Tag Archives: Pope

January 10th

On this day in 236 a bloke called Fabian became the Pope.

Does this seem a little dull? I’m sorry about that, but all the stuff I could find for this day more or less bored the arse off me, so in the end I just went with Fabian because it was that or write about four paragraphs about how bloody boring January 10th is. Which I might still end up doing anyway, but meanwhile, back to Fabian.

Jesus the Dove flies into JPII face. The message being "why did you make this idiot pope?!"

There is one interesting thing about him becoming pope. You see, it is said that he wasn’t a bishop or a priest, or anything like that. He was a a simple layman who just happened to be in Rome when all the bishops had got together to elect a new pope (Anterus, the previous pope had died about a week before after being pope for only one month and ten days. It’s almost certain that he was murdered for being more trouble than he was worth. Cf. Pope John Paul I who might turn up here one of these days). They were all up for electing a Bishop, as was the usual way of things, but as they all stood around nattering about who’d make the best pope and comparing frocks and jewellery and stuff like that, a dove came along and sort of fluttered about over Fabian’s head.

Well, being religious sorts who knew their bible and all the stories it contained they all went “Bloody Nora! That dove is totally like Jesus innit! He’s telling us to elect Fabian! Er, do we have to do that? Really?”

The dove did not move while they were all prevaricating, so they decided

Fabian's deadly poo. Bishops look on and are heard to say "that turd will kill him!"

they’d better do what Jesus was telling them to through a bird, the big thickos. To be honest, it wasn’t that difficult for them to decide to go along with the dove, because even though being pope was a top job with well nice frocks and the best jewels in Christendom, given that Anterus had probably been murdered and they reckoned that the next pope would probably be done in as well, none of the bishops were that keen on being pope as they preferred being alive.

As it happened, Fabian turned out to be quite a good pope, sending people to places like France to tell them how nice it was to be a Catholic and doing some nice building and stuff around Rome. Oh and he also did something with Chrism, which wasn’t as rude as it sounds. So, he wasn’t murdered and got to be pope for fourteen years. He wasn’t murdered to death, he died of bursting a vein in his head when struggling to have a poo, just like Elvis.

And that is the story of Pope Fabian. Oh he got to be a saint as well, which given what we read about yesterday, doesn’t mean much of anything at all.

Still, nice as it was to talk about bishops in pretty frocks, doves and getting to be pope in olden times, I bloody hope there’s something more interesting to rabbit on about tomorrow. Let’s hope there’s a semi-interesting birthday for today. Fingers crossed, I’m off to have a look now.

Today is the birthday of Roderick Stewart. I mention this not because I give a flying fornication about Rod the Mod, but because until today I had no idea that his given name was Roderick and it amuses me no end.

Imagine having that face looming over you?

I’m not totally anti-Rod. The man’s done some good songs and stuff, but anyone who can sing “do you think I’m sexy” whilst wearing the most hideous leopard print tight trousers in the world is a bit of a joke. That and the fact that he keeps marrying the same blonde woman, just changing her for a slightly younger model every few years or so, which is just too icky for words.

But, blah, it’s Rod’s birthday. He will probably put on a kilt and a tartan hat and go on about how Scottish he is, despite being from North London and being a plastic Jock. Or joke, whichever you prefer.

It was also the birthday of Mary Ingalls, the older sister of Laura Ingalls

The real Mary Ingalls.

Wilder who wrote all the “Little House” books. Unlike the pretty crazily blue-eyed girl in the tv series of Little House on the Prairie, Mary never married, although she did go blind and did go to the blind school that the TV Mary went to. But there was not crazily blue-eyed teacher for her to fall in love with and get married to and so her non-existent husband did not fall over and get concussion and magically get his eyesight back and take her to NYC where he could finally be a lawyer and not a crappy old teacher. Her life was slightly less dramatic than that.

When she finished school, she went back home to live with Ma and Pa, made fly nets for horses and when her parents died went to live with her sister Grace and then with Carrie, before dying herself. I note that she did not live with Laura, who was probably to high and mighty to let her blind sister live with her by then.

Despite her dull life, it’s fair to say that Mary was probably more worthy of inclusion in this little blog than Roderick the Mod, because while she never accomplished much, she also never put her flabby arse into stupid trousers and pretended to be a bit half gay when she thought it was trendy. All in all, Mary the bland trumps Rod the twat.

Happy birthday to them both! Sort of.

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May 26th

On this day in 1328 there was quite a flurry in Avignon when a bunch of Franciscan friars did a midnight flit to escape from Pope John XXII who was totally up for having their guts for garters, or at the very least cutting their heads off for getting right on his tits.

William giving the J Dog evils

A couple of explanatory points. Those of you not aware of the intricacies of Catholic and Papal history are probably wondering what the pope was doing in Avignon. It’s all rather tiresome really. In 1309 Pope Clement V, who was a Frenchman, said that he wasn’t moving to Rome and set up a papal enclave in Avignon. This was partly because he was really lazy and partly because at this point in time there was all sorts of bother going on between the French kings and the papacy. Then for the next 68 years the succeeding popes, all seven of them and all French, stayed in Avignon, getting cosier and cosier with the French monarchy, until in 1377 Pope Gregory XI was all “sod this for a game of soldiers” and moved back to Rome. There then followed a brief period of the proper pope being in Rome and a couple of anti-popes in Avignon and then everything went back to normal and la!

There’s your background and now you’re wondering why John XXII wanted a bunch of Franciscan friars dead. Well, one of them was Father William of Ockham and if his name rings a bell, it’s because of Ockham’s (Occam’s) razor. Ockham’s razor is the philosophical principle that we should tend toward simpler theories. It doesn’t mean that the simplest theory is always right, but that we shouldn’t tit about with really complicated theories, using stuff that is a bit esoteric and not very well-known, unless it’s really, really necessary, because tried and trusted simpler routes will often be the right ones to take. Nothing particularly contentious about that, but it had John XXII absolutely raging. He liked to be all fancy-Dan with his theories and didn’t like some English monk coming over and telling him how he should think. He also really resented William getting a principle named after him while he, the Pope, FFS, got nothing.

J-Dog just before he threatened to "cut those bitches with a knife"

In one of their meetings, William explained to John that the only reason it had happened was because one day while he was shaving his tonsure with a Gillette Fusion ProGlide Gamer Mach 79 razor, he’d realised that there was no need for such a stupidly bladed razor, so he got out some old razor with just the one blade and found it did just as good a job. This just made John even angrier and he got all sweary in French, shouting about not having a tonsure, not having a principle, and this that and the other, like a big old baby in a frock. William had brought his mate Michael of Cesena along for a bit of moral support and at this point Mike made a really big error. He turned to John and said “Yeah, but you get to be the Pope, God’s representative on earth. You get all the jewellery, a nice palace and nearly everyone in the world has to do what you say, so, you know, you’ve got it pretty good.” John threw a total shit fit.

The exact nature of John’s shit fit isn’t known for sure, but in the Secret Diary of Michael of Cesena aged 61½, written a few years after the event he wrote:

J went all red in the face and I knew he was pissed off because I’d been going on about all the nice gear he had and he was already on my case ‘cos I was on at him to tone down the bling and be a bit more of an example to the poor. Me and Willy standing there with our baldy heads and brown robes just made him lose it big stylee and I reckon if he’d had an axe on him there, he’d have had our heads off on the spot. As it was he was all “Fuck you, you’re so dead with your poxy razors and all this shit about ecclesiastical poverty. I’ve had it with you” and I was all “Calm down, J, it’s only words, keep the rings and stuff if you want, cuz.” But Willy had a bit more about him than me and he was all “Just shut it, Mike, Big Papa J is well angry, innit. We better get out of here.” and then J was all “Yeah, fuck off, but I’m having you two and your mates, so think on that, you slags!”

So they went back to the monastery and got their posse together. William packed up his books, some spare underpants and a razor and they all crept out of Avignon and went to live in Munich. John couldn’t execute them, so he excommunicated them, but they were so not bothered. As it turned out, William got un-excommunicated by Innocent VI in 1359, 11 years after his death,which meant that he got to go to heaven. Probably.

Ah birthdays. I’m still not in a good birthday place and I really don’t know why this is. But I do have to big up Miles Davis who was born on this day and is a genius of 20th century music, whose influence is so huge and wide that most people probably don’t even realise that a lot of the music they love was inspired and made possible by this jazz trumpeter, this band leader, this composer, this master of musical theory. If you don’t have a copy of Kind of Blue, you are missing out on one of life’s most sublime pleasures, so get out and buy one now!

My name is Henry and I am a total knobend

It is also the day that Peter Cushing was born. He was such a lovely chap who could be recommended to bring a touch of class to whatever film he appeared in. I would highly recommend watching Blood Beast Terror, which is undoubtedly one of the worst films ever made and one in which Cushing mostly just wanders through while smoking endless fags. It is utterly brilliant in its ineptitude and I highly recommend it.  Here’s the trailer.

And finally, it is also the day that Henry Holland was born. Most of you will be all “who?” and that’s the way it should be. He is a so-called fashion designer who is shit and he is only famous because he hangs around with that model Agyeness Deynesesnsne or whatever TF she chooses to call herself. He is an utter twat and a big fat ponce of a poncing ponce. His clothes should be burned or put on scarecrows. That is all.

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February 12th

On this day in 881 Pope John VIII crowned Charles the Fat King of Italy and Emperor of whatever he fancied being Emperor of. The latter was because Fat Charlie rescued the Pope from a wicked duke by the name of Guy who was being quite the invader and walking into all the Papal States and bagsing them. Charles stopped him, by virtue of his bulk and the Pope, as we have seen, gave him a nice big reward.

Charles wore a corset for his coronation

Although Charles was the King of Italy, he was in fact a German by birth, although of course Germany didn’t exist, but despite this his dad was Called Louis the German. His mum was Emma the Welf, a Welf being the result of a mating between a wolf and an elf. She was famed for her beauty and her hirsuteness. Charles had two older brothers, Louis the son-of-a-Welf and Carloman the Bugger, both of whom very much disappointed their father and as a result were cut off and died in penury. Charles nearly disappointed his father when, as a wee thing, he had a funny turn, which was put down to demonic possession, but as he did not go the whole Linda Blair route, his father decided to forgive him, mostly because he’d run out of children who could inherit his lands. The German died in 876 and from that date onward Charles the Fat became King of Germania, which at the time was a little village in Bavaria with two half-decent pubs, a church and a post office.

His route to becoming Emperor of everything was not an easy one. He had many enemies, including Charles the Bald – name self-explanatory – and Engleschalk II who was not a bad lad at heart, but  had turned a bit vicious after years of being teased at school for having a very stupid name. Fatty had friends too, including Notker the Stammerer (a distant relative of our own George VI) and his best mate Richardis , who one day took off all his clothes, revealed he was a she, and married Charles in a private ceremony followed by a reception for close friends and any family members that weren’t dead, at their local Harvester.

In the years following his coronation by John VIII (who was not the so-called-Pope Joan, although he did look a lot like Larry

Pope John VIII

Grayson) life was not easy for Charlie. Richardis was not able to have children, probably because she really was a he who’d hidden her maleness under a large merkin, and she eventually left him to go and live with some nuns, who were less bothered by her beard than Charlie. Left alone, with only his cousin Ermentrude to keep him company, things went from bad to worse. His empire pretty much fell apart, Geoffrey Rush of Australasia cured Notker of his stammer which led Notker to rethink his options and leave Charles for a life of booze and loose women; Ermentrude was offered a starring role in a miracle play called The Magic Roundabout and Charles caught gout off of a peasant and died sad, alone and nowhere near as fat as everyone insisted he was.

 

 

 

Today was the birthday of three notable figures from history. Charles Darwin, who discovered evolution on  his ship The Beagle, which was named in honour of his love of Charles Schulz‘s Snoopy; Abraham Lincoln, the first giant to become President of the US

Anna has a bit of a dance while waiting for her meringues to bake

and the victim of a Jackass stunt that went horribly wrong; and Anna Pavlova, who successfully combined careers in dancing and patisserie and invented meringues and sugar plum fairies.

It is difficult to decide which of these three has had the most important impact on the world. One is minded to rule out Abraham Lincoln immediately, because while being a giant and popularising the stove-pipe hat is quite the achievement, if pretty much falls away in the face of evolution and meringues. Left with Charles and the lovely Anna, we have to decide which is more significant: inventing monkeys or discovering the secret of mixing egg whites and sugar. Hard as it is to choose and lovely as monkeys are, it is obvious that the meringue has had a more decisive impact on modern humanity than evolution, King Kong notwithstanding.

So, we celebrate the births of this stellar trio of illustrious worthies, remembering as we do that egg whites and sugar trump monkeys and giants and say to all three. Thank you. Thank you for the music, thank you for the four score years and seven, thank you for Every Which Way But Loose, and a very happy birthday to you one and all!

 

Darwin and Lincoln once had a Beard-off. Darwin won

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