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Walk past a "Heavy Plant" warning and wonder vaguely if the trees thought it was for them; if whoever put it up had enough imag...

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Threefold Inaccurate Catholics

I do hope that the same courtesies being extended to the Catholic Church will be extended to the World gathering of Pastafari that I propose takes place in Sydney next year. As a devout Pastafarian I will expect the city to be shut down, helicopters to hover constantly overhead and Spaghetti Carbonara to be available on every street corner. I believe it is everyone’s right to believe in the omnipotent supernatural being of their choice with as little evidence as they like and disrupt the lives of millions of others accordingly.

There are many things that I find innately annoying about World Youth Day, starting with the arrogant inaccuracy of the name:

  1. World; amazingly not everyone is a Catholic. The name may mean universal but there are an awful lot of Indonesians, Indians, Chinese and pretty well the whole Middle and Far East to whom this really doesn’t apply. There’s quite a few Anglicans too, they used to burn Catholics…
  2. Youth; it is a matter of record that unaccompanied minors and catholic clergy should not mix. In fact The German Shepherd himself is going to apologise for this very thing whilst he is here. This means that the city is filled with the only thing worse than devout children; the kind of devout adult who would volunteer to take them to WYD08
  3. Day; day! It goes on for at least a week of rubbernecking pious bastardry.

Those attending WYD08 are known as ‘Pilgrims’ which I also cannot stand as it makes me adopt a John Wayne voice as I shove them out of the way (and sometimes into the harbour, I only wanted to see if they could walk on water…). Also in the age of cheaply available air travel is the word Pilgrim really appropriate? Surely the whole idea of pilgrimage is that it was meant to be hard, you were meant to go on foot and you were meant to discover things about the world around you and about yourself. What do I discover when I travel by air?

  1. I don’t like most people
  2. I don’t like airports
  3. I don’t like aeroplanes
  4. I do like a glass of wine and a decent movie

These are all things I could have discovered by travelling to my local shopping mall to pick up a DVD and a bottle of plonk, not travelling halfway round the world for a glimpse of the pope and to chant halleluiah tunelessly in another country.

The effect thousands of additional people in a city they don’t know very well has had a less than positive impact on the public transport system. The events in the city are supposedly timed not to coincide with the morning rush-hour. Unfortunately if you are pious enough and jet-lagged enough there’s no real way of predicting just how early you will get up do a little God-bothering sightseeing.

At least the propensity to wear the flag of their nation of origin and brightly coloured clothing and accessories makes them very easy to see through a rifle scope.