19 April 2008

Random Observations on the Pope and Other Oddities

One can easily tell who the head of the Catholic Church is. The Pope has the tallest hat. I like the idea of using such a simple signal to indicate who is in charge and think that all organizations – from pre-schools to corporations and nation-states - should use the “taller the hat, the more authority” system.

I was in the gym and did not hear the commentary, but CNN showed nuns giving the pope a standing ovation. Is that really newsworthy? Nuns clapping for the pope?

I heard that when the pope finished his speech the other day, Bush leaned forward and whispered to him, “Awesome speech.” Future historians are likely to conclude that democracies were doomed when we made a man who is basically a 10th grader the head of the free world. “Awesome speech?” Really?

I was down by the beach the other day and a couple of beach bums were walking down the side walk in classic attire: flip flops, shorts, and Hawaiian shirts. The scrawniest of the two, though, had recklessly embellished his outfit, inexplicably donning boxing gloves at some point in his day. A third guy caught up with him and exclaims, “Are you wearing boxing gloves?!” At last, I think. Someone will call him on the obvious absurdity of this. “Yeah,” the guy smiles. “Awesome!” said the third beach bum, his tone conveying nothing but admiration. I looked down the street for George W., wondering if he knew that his buddies were enjoying this beautiful spring day without him.

Last week, airlines stranded about 3.7 million travelers. (Okay, perhaps I exaggerate, but does the actual number really matter?) And yet they persist in scheduling flights for 8:07 PM arrivals, even as they miss scheduled times by a matter of days. There ought to be a rule: an airline has to be exactly on time on at least two consecutive days before they can pretend to be so accurate. Meanwhile, why not just say, “We’ll arrive sometime after 8 PM. We hope.”

Critics have decided that Obama is elitist. He is one of three remaining people who is likely to become our next president. Is “elitist” an accusation or a statement of fact?

A salesman from Provo, Utah is suing his former employer for waterboarding during a team building exercise. “You saw how hard Chad fought for air,” the boss allegedly announced. “I want you to go back inside and fight that hard to make sales.” One can only speculate that when Cheney heard about this new trend towards the trivialization of torture, he said, “Awesome.”


nunya said...


You're funny :)

Lifehiker said...

My youngest son, who lives here in Gilbert, AZ, with wife and kids (and who Good Witch and I are visiting this week), says he has a lot of respect for the pope. "You got to be really great to tour without an album", he said.

Jennifer H said...

Way to wrap it all up and tie it with a great big bow.

Funny stuff. I could even say awesome, but I won't. And may never, ever again.

slouching mom said...

when my husband and i saw that clip, of bush leaning over to say, "awesome speech!," we mutually cringed.


Gypsy at Heart said...

Given Mr. Bush's singular brand of eloquence, 'awesome' almost sounds like a vocabulary upgrade for him. This post was a tragicomedy Ron. Enjoyed it.

cce said...

In these parts 'awesome' has been replaced by 'wicked' or 'sick' which used to be 'wicked awesome' or 'wicked sick' but 'awesome' being entirely too ubiquitous was dropped about five years ago. Even the third graders of South School Elementary know that awesome just doesn't work as a superlative anymore. I guess GW missed the memo.

Anonymous said...

I've actually been pretty impressed with the Pope on this visit, and I didn't expect to be.

Is there a store you know of where I can buy a hat like that? Usually I wear a big floppy canvas hat with a wide brim, but I bet a hat like that would get me a lot more respect.

Damon said...

I'm actually rather surprised that you find Bush's speech of interest still Ron. It's not like we didn't know about his "down-home" speech and mannerisms when we voted him in.

If America so badly wanted a scholarly and more uptight gentleman, John Kerry wouldn't have lost so badly.

SEVEN years into the Bush presidency and people are still shocked by this?...and you wonder at the news-worthy-ness of nuns clapping for the pope?

Ron Davison said...

thank you (he said, having absolutely nothing when suddenly put on the spot like that and expected to prove that he's funny).

that is worthy of a chuckle. If I weren't in Indy, I'd insist that you come a few hours further west and visit. You and the good witch would be welcome in the guest room.

jennifer h,
don't let them scare you away from awesome (he said in the anguished tones of someone fighting for a much more important right).

slouching mom,
mutual cringing is, if nothing else, a bonding exercise. oy indeed.

put in context ... yes, you are right - this is not so bad for him.

missed the memo? I think that George has someone abbreviate abbreviations for him and summarize summaries.

Halloween before last, my wife was kind enough to make one for me. Just for the record, I did not discern an increase in respect.

you conservatives - first you defend bush and now you just shrug and say, "How can you still be surprised?" Where is your intervening sense of shame for having put the man in office? Where Damon? Where?

Damon said...

it took a while, but we conservatives finally learned from liberals how to be shameless. =)

David said...

Really funny Ron-O. Ditto Damon. When GWB leaves it won't be good news for every liberal though. Dave Letterman will have to give up his "Great Moments in Presidential Speeches" bit each night. That is, unless.....nah.