Sunday, April 24, 2011

Holy Spray-on Tan

A catholic priest and a rabbi are sitting in an upscale Starbucks. The rabbi looks knowingly over at the priest, and their eyes meet. Soon they are sitting next to each other discussing finer points of theology and faith.

It is Easter -HAPPY EASTER- . Children everywhere are celebrating the miracles surrounding the mutilation of an ancient god with bunny ears and chocolate eggs. Spring is in full stride for most of the well-populated areas of the northern hemisphere, and those with young hearts find their thoughts turned towards love. In a ritualistic homage to the mating dance of the praying mantis children everywhere will bite the heads off of chocolate rabbits.

Silk-Dyed Goose Eggs
The priest and the rabbi settle into their frothy espresso drinks. The conversation turns to things more personal. The rabbi asks the priest where he is going, where he has come from.

“You look like you just graduated from seminary?” asks the rabbi “Off to a small parish outpost in a countryside of heathens?”

“About a month ago...” says the priest, adding with a dull thud “I'm off to Tooele Utah”

“Ahhhh...well...a young priest must pay for the cloth I suppose. Still you look like a young man with great promise. You look like a young man who will go far in life, and the afterlife I suppose. Barring any unpleasantries being found out about alter-boys you should move up fast. Where could you go when your rising star escapes Tooele?” asks the rabbi; a mischievous tic developing in the corner of his right eye.

The priest is a little confused by the mixing of insult and compliment, and decides to interpret it as all compliment.

“I might become a bishop someday” replies the priest.

“Bishop...Bishop...Bishop is good. Pointy hats, curly staff, dresses -if you are into that sort of thing-. Yep, all good. I can see why you would want to be bishop. A young man of your character should become bishop in no time. Barring any unpleasantries surrounding the shuffling of pedophile priests from parish to parish you would move up fast as a bishop. Where can you go from bishop?” Asks the rabbi; the tic now randomly quivering the entire right side of his face.

The priest is a little unsure about whether he is witnessing the beginnings of a stroke.

“I might someday become an archbishop” the priest tentatively offers

“Archbishop....Archbishop....Archbishop. The name is impressive. You get a sash and a yamaka. I like yamakas myself, prevent those nasty sunburns peculiar to middle-aged men. I think a young man of your caliber would become an archbishop in no time. You would do well. Baring any unpleasantries connected to covering up the actions of pedophile priest besieged bishops you should outgrow the position of archbishop. Where can you go from archbishop?” Asks the rabbi; the tic now settling down into a broad smile.

The priest connects the smile to the offhanded pedophile comments, and begins to become irritated.

“A few are summoned to become cardinals” answers the priest, and then adds: “by the grace of the holly spirit I might be amongst them”

“Cardinal...Cardinal...Cardinal. Red clothing always makes me look flushed in the wrong light. I suppose you could powder your face, but if you sweat it would leave a white film on your collar. I think a young man like yourself would be summoned to become cardinal in no time. You would do well. Barring any unpleasantiries associated with some unfortunately unearthed church history you should outgrow the position of cardinal. Where can you go from cardinal?” Asks the rabbi; his smile now broad and toothy.

The priest is confused for a moment. The rabbi has apparently abandoned the pedophile jabs, but for what? Jabs about wardrobe malfunctions? Perhaps he should hit back with some cut about learning to tuck in one's shirt properly. The rabbi's grin is troublesome.

“Pope. The pope is head of the Roman Catholic Church.” replies the priest deadpan.

Pope...Pope...Pope. Pope is good. I'm not sure about that funny aquarium on wheels he rides around on. I would think that would be hot on a sunny day, but what do I know? But you will have to get out more. An old man with pasty white skin wearing that white dress is just a little unfashionable, Perhaps you could get a holy spray-on tan while pope. I think a man of your character would make a great pope. You would do well. But if the pope is head of the Roman Catholic Church then...that's as far as you can go? Where can you go from pope?” Asks the rabbi; the corners of his mouth now stretched so far by his smile that they threaten to connect at the back of his head, and dislodge the top of his skull.

The priest realizes that he is talking to a smiling crazy person. 'holy spray-on tan'...what nonsense...what blasphemy!

The priest decides not to slurp the foam from his skinny caramel machiato, and rises to leave. Thoughts and insecurities whip his confusion into peaks of irritation. He tries to come up with a witty parting shot, and fails.

Jesus Christ!” he murmurs in frustration.

One of our guys made it!” replies the rabbi; grinning.

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