Everything was Pope Crazy today.
Benedict XVI was in town, meeting with our demented manchild of a president before cruising up to Catholic University in that sporty Pope-mobile. What on Earth could those two talk about behind closed doors, I wonder?
If only I were a fly on the wall for THAT meeting...it actually wouldn't matter, because flies (probably) don't understand human speech. They're funny that way.
But it was fascinating to observe the general reaction to all the papal fuss. Most folks seemed to be having fun with it, with jokes at Benedict's expense: Pope-mobiles, sexual scandals, is-he-a-nazi-or-isn't-he, dig those rockin' red shoes, etc... I wondered if the devout Catholics out there were taking it all with reverence and strength, outright embarrassment, or quiet indifference.
I was Catholic-by-association during childhood: Catholic school until 4th grade, mass on Sundays, the whole trip. And frankly, it's no religion for children. That shit scared the liver-flapping hell outta me.
No pun attempted.
As I saw it, God was an old white man with severe "competition" issues, his boy was a blue-eyed hippie fruitcake that was doomed from birth by scripture but had to slog through life anyway (the ultimate 'foregone conclusion'), and these "priest" people were like earthbound lawyers: here to translate and explain the ritual disciplines necessary to be saved, because the whole thing was so bloody complicated.
Oh, and the kicker: Thanks to Original Sin, NOBODY is truly worthy of "salvation" so the best you can hope for is to catch the old man in a good mood when you get to the Reception Desk. Thus, it's a swindle. The books have been cooked by a revolutionary sect that became a worldwide government.
The Holy Roman Empire (who, by the way, stole the concept of urban planning from the Etruscans and took credit for it; just sayin') was to become the most grisly slaughterhouse in human history. And its agents are still with us today.
I left the Catholic scene far behind in the smoking ruins of childhood. Thus, during all this Pope Stuff today, it was almost shocking to find that there was still a Catholic church operating in modern times... Therefore, there must still be real Catholics walking the earth.
Didn't all that just cease to exist when I stopped paying attention?
Now of course this is not a slam against modern Catholics, just some self-indulgent naval-gazing. Benedict's arrival has indeed been thought-provoking.
But I find it interesting that some of the most vibrant and happy agnostics, pagans, Wiccans, Druids, Asatru, Dianics, and Discordians I've ever met started out as Catholics. So maybe it wasn't just ME having nightmares of getting my astral ass kicked by that jealous bearded dude in the clouds.
A TV crew from Eurovision has been camped out at the front door of my office building for the past two days with cameras on Thomas Circle, preparing to film something Pope-ish (Popian? Popoid?). I assume the motorcade passed by today shortly after noon, en route to the Basilica, where Benedict was going to host a big bash for the folks of Catholic University.
If I wasn't up to my neck in magazine deadlines, I would've embedded myself in the madness with camera, notebook, and evil grin. But alas.
Next time, Pope. I'll catch ye next time.