I watched the pope's recent appearance at Yankee Stadium with great sadness. The reason for my sadness was because I missed an opportunity to do some good in the world.
See, I had a fantastic plan.
Ever since I learned the pope was going to hold mass in front of nearly 60,000 Catholics in Yankee Stadium, I had this idea to invent a bomb and drop it on them. Not an exploding-shrapnel-death-and-destruction type of bomb—rather, a bomb that bombs only righteousness and goodness to humankind.
The plan was to make a device that, upon detonation, releases some sort of intelligence gas, then fly it over Yankee stadium and drop it, thereby bringing common sense and rational thought to a stadium-full of Catholics at once.
And I almost succeeded. I actually created a bomb that would release a gas that is concentrated with the molecules of rational thought. The only problem was that the gasses also boiled your bone marrow, so the effin FDA—always the sticklers—didn't approve it. Thus was my golden opportunity lost.
But can you imagine if it were successful? Can you imagine if, in an instant, nearly 60,000 Catholics; hundreds of high-level cardinals, bishops and priests; the pontiff himself; and a couple of dozen Yankees players were stricken with the vapors of rational thought? Wouldn't it just be awesome to see that happen? Then the guys who operate the JumboTron, themselves fumigated by the gasses of rationality, start looping quotes from famous free thinkers on the giant screen. So as each person in the stadium feels the effects of the vapors, they simultaneously see the quotes and realize how much sense they make.
“Where knowledge ends, religion begins,” the words on the JumboTron say.
Well, yes, that makes perfect sense now, the soon-to-be-formerly faithful think.
“Absence of evidence is evidence of absence.”
Oh, my God, yes!
“God always behaves like the people who created him.”
So true, so true—why hadn't I thought of that before?
Then the last quote in the loop appears: “Religion does three things effectively: divides people, controls people, deludes people.” And all 60,000 formerly faithful simultaneously understand their lives to have been a sham, and they begin to murmur, grumble and stomp until the entire stadium rumbles on its foundation.
But then, because they have common sense, they realize this is a good thing, that they're unshackled now, liberated, free to live their lives as they see fit. So the formerly faithful rejoice, and they sing and dance and start a wave—a wave of rational thought that ripples around the whole stadium.
And then the crowd becomes quiet. Then a deacon, himself afflicted with the fumes of free thinking, approaches the microphone.
“May the vapors of rational thought be with you,” he sings.
“And also with you,” the choir responds.
Then the deacon sings the new-and-improved Gospel According to John:
“Jesus said to his disciples, ‘Where I am going. Do you know the way?' Ah, who am I kidding? How do we know what Jesus said? We were not there. For all we know, he said, ‘Where I am going is the Tijuana strip clubs. Take 805 south. That is the way.'”
Then the pope, himself tingling with the carbonation of critical thinking, finally addresses the crowd.
“My brothers and seesters,” he says with frail German accent. “Vaht a colossal dope I have been. Vaht was I thinking?! Jesus was mortal, virgins don't get pregnant and Noah could never have fit all those animals on one boat. So screw this noise, my chil-druhn—let us party!”
And just like on graduation day, all the high-level clergymen throw their funny hats in the air. And the P.A. cranks Black Sabbath.
Then, when “mass” is over, the pope flies back to the Vatican and uses all the power and treasure of the Catholic Church to continue fighting poverty, hunger and disease and none of it for converting people into believing in fairy tales.
And all the New England Catholics return to their lives and begin spreading the highly viral vapors of intelligence to other Catholics, Jews, Muslims and Red Sox fans.
And they stop teaching their children to believe in fairy tales like Creationism, the Garden of Eden and that abstinence is the only reliable birth control.
And people get off their praying knees and start actually doing shit to improve their lives and their world.
And bookstore owners remove all the Bibles from the religious section and put them where they belong: in the comedy section.
And the formerly faithful Yankees stop thanking God for their clutch performances and instead give thanks to the real reason for their successes—steroids—and they start taking more.
And judges remove religious statues and plaques from city property.
And the words “Under God” are removed from the Pledge of Allegiance and instead used as the title of an upcoming gay-porn movie about priests boinking altar boys.
And formerly Christian rock bands stop singing about Jesus with their eyes closed and their open hands raised to the heavens and go back to singing about sex and drugs with one foot on the monitor, holding the microphone stand upside down in the air.
And strangers no longer knock on my door when I'm eating, except to say, “You were right, Ed, you were right all along.”
Alleluia, alleluia, ah-ah-lay-lu-jah!