City Desk

Morning Roundup: The “Homer Simpson Gets a Thumbs-Up From the Pope, Sort Of” Edition

Good morning, City Desk readers. Last I met you in this space, we were engaging in panic about the impending Snowpocalypse. And I didn't even know then about the snowball-toting anarchists!

Speaking of anarchists, President Barack Obama phoned in yesterday to WTOP's "Ask the Governor," on which Virginia's outgoing chief executive, Tim Kaine, was taking a final goodwill lap. This "Barry from D.C." stunt would have been all fine and good, except that it came at 10:18, when the station was due for its traffic update ("Traffic and weather together, on the 8s"). And then Obama made a joke about traffic! In Northern Virginia! Does he not know how many poor boobs were still out there on the Beltway, trying to get to work, desperately awaiting the next "8" so they could plot (or re-plot) their alternate route?

Just a little heads-up to the commander-in-chief: If you have a helicopter, and, if when you're not using that helicopter, you travel around in a street-clearing motorcade that can get you across the river to Ray's Hell Burger or anywhere you wish in, like, four minutes, even during the peak of the rush, I'm pretty sure you don't have a right to joke about traffic, especially while you're preempting coverage of it. Anarchist indeed.

The Washington Post has another story (triple byline) this morning on the Salahis. City Paper's Jonathan Fischer noted in yesterday's Arts Desk roundup that the Post already had two Party Crashers stories this week. I'm just curious, does anyone not know these people are frauds? Does anyone care about them? I personally won't read past the third graf, which says:

The picture that emerges from court documents and interviews with detectives, sheriff's deputies and two dozen people who say they were bilked is that the Salahis created for themselves a fantastic world of champagne bubbles and fashion, famous friends and jet-setting good times, when, in fact, the reality was far different.

homer-simpson-pictureSpeaking of a fantastic world of champagne bubbles and fashion, famous friends, and jet-setting good times, the Pope's newspaper has congratulated "The Simpsons" on its 20th anniversary! L'Osservatore Romano praised the show's philosophical leanings and its irreverent take on religion, which seems kind of ironic to me since the Catholic Church I grew up with didn't seem to think anything irreverent was funny. Actually, I don't think it found anything funny.

Homer's religious confusion and ignorance are "a mirror of the indifference and the need that modern man feels toward faith," the paper said.

It commented on several religion-themed episodes, including one in which Homer calls for divine intervention by crying: "I'm not normally a religious man, but if you're up there, save me, Superman!"

"Homer finds in God his last refuge, even though he sometimes gets His name sensationally wrong," L'Osservatore said. "But these are just minor mistakes, after all, the two know each other well."

The paper did say there was reason to, well, not like the "excessively crude language, the violence of certain episodes or some extreme choices by the scriptwriters." Now that sounds more like the Pope.

He probably wouldn't approve of some City Paper coverage.

Have a nice day!

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