DC, Philly and New York – hope you’re surviving Pope Francis mania. Thank God (lit’rally) he’s heading back to Italy today so your roads will be (fairly) back to normal!
Yesterday, Pope Francis touched down in his Shepherd One (large Alitalia plane) in Washington, D.C. for his first visit to the States as Pope (and as a human). It marked the beginning of a five-day trip on the east coast, and if I’m being real, interrupted my viewing of Ellen with Lester Holt describing a Fiat 500L. Even if you’re not Catholic, or religious, it’s still fascinating to keep up with, and if you’re a resident of DC, New York or Philadelphia, it’s kind of necessary since it will probably either make or break your day. So if you’re in one of these cities where the Pope is lit’rally blessing you with his presence, here are some guidelines to follow to stay sane with the holy one.
Get Ready For Angry Commuters
In Los Angeles, we already deal with a lot of traffic. But people’s anger is tested when the President is in town, as major streets have to be closed, subsequently rerouting folks all over the place. It’s the kind of anger that’s usually taken out on all social media platforms by pretty much anyone. There’s nothing worse than assuming you’ll be on time for work only to find out the roads are closed and you have to take 15 side streets instead, but everyone else is doing the same thing and you’re at a full stop and the only way to vent your frustration is by tweeting #THANKSOBAMA.
Spot His Ride
In likely Pope fashion, he got off the plane, walked on a red carpet, greeted the Obamas and misc. members of the archdiocese and got in his sleek, black, spacious Fiat 500L. If you’re one of the folks who saw this and thought, ‘Well that’s a choice’, Pope Francis is known for using more modest cars, as a reflection of his emphasis for a simple less consumeristic lifestyle. Still, the Popemobile is nothing compared to the whip he usually rides in all around the Vatican, a Renault 4 that’s 20 years old and has over 170,000 miles on it. I know Catholics are super not into change, but come on bro, at least see if Fiat can score you a 500L after giving them free advertising.
Hey, remember when Pope Francis’ predecessor quit? That was a good time.
So, your Pope has left you. Abdicated. Resigned. Whatever you call it, one day you had a Pope, and the next you didn’t. “I thought we were infallible!,” you say. “Bonds only broken by death! Probably yours, because you’re really, really old!”
I know. I know. It’s hard. The worst breakups are the ones where you never saw coming. In these days adjusting to life without a Pope, I’m here to offer words of support. There are plenty of Cardinals in the sea. It’s not you, it’s him. Or Him. I’m not sure which. Have you ever thought about online church?
Like many ladies who have been dumped, I am turning to the seminal self-help dating guide, He’s Just Not That Into You, and its companion volume, It’s Called A Breakup Because It’s Broken. You may know these books from the Sex and the City tie-in, or more likely, from reading them stealthily in the corner of a bookstore or library while heartbroken. Here is some advice from these books, and how it can help you in these dark, Pope-less days.
- He’s Just Not That Into You If He’s Breaking Up With You
I know you thought you were special to him, but considering he’s leaving you in the dust, Pope Benedict XVI was just not that into you. If he were, he’d be here.
- He’s Just Not That Into You If He’s Disappeared On You
One day, you guys are doing great. The Pope is retweeting your witty Latin retorts and answering all your prayers. Then you notice that he’s suddenly off of Facebook every time you sign on. You text the Pope, and he gets back to you two days later, and is all, “my phone was charging.” Before you know it, every time you try to receive a benediction at St. Peter’s, the Pope is all, “sorry, I have to shepherd to the faithful in Somalia this week.” And you check the news, and the Pope wasn’t even IN Somalia. Sorry, lady — the Pope’s just not that into you.
- He’s Just not that into you if he’s married (and other insane variations of being unavailable)
This one, along with the chapter “he’s just not that into you if he’s not having sex with you,” really says it all about your relationship with the pope. He’s married to God, or something, and also to the whole Church. You really expect someone who is married to the entire largest religion in the world to be into you? He’s not and I’m sorry.
- He’s just not that into you if he only wants to see you when he’s drunk
The ONLY time Pope Benedict XVI called you to worship was when he had a chalice of communion wine at the ready. You didn’t feel even a little weird about that?
- Don’t See Him Or Talk To Him For 60 Days
The best advice I’ve ever received is to cut off contact for a good long while – like, a month or two, at least. Don’t call the pope. Don’t answer his texts. Delete his number if you have to. Block the pope on G-Chat. Unfollow him on Twitter. You need to get that pope out of your head, and the only way to do that is to move on. When that white smoke appears above Vatican City, you don’t want to be all hung up on the old pope. You want to be ready to love again.
- Get Rid Of His Stuff And The Things That Remind You Of Him
“But this CD has Pope Benedict’s favorite hymn on it!” – No. Stop. Who still has CDs anyway? Are you my dad?
“P.B.16 gave such a great speech on this piece of catechism!” – Put it down. Now.
“But my commemorative Pope Benedict collector’s plate might be worth big money some day!” – No it won’t. We all remember what happened with Beanie Babies.
- Get Your Ass in Motion Every Day
You can’t just lounge around eating communion wafers all day. First of all, I think that’s church-illegal. Second, it’s just pathetic. Join an activity. Go to church, where the constant sitting and standing is a small-scale aerobic workout. Or stay home if that’s still too fresh and painful for you. Maybe join a book club*. Like eight out of ten book club members are people who have just been through breakups and need a distraction. The other two are new to the city.
* In the interest of full disclosure, sometimes my friends and I have “book club” but that’s just code for watching Dance Moms and drinking wine.