Secret Pop

May 2, 2005


Beulah discovered recently that she was a big fan of the Pope. The most recent one. I guess it all kicked in when he died. She Tivo'ed the funeral services and wrote about it in her blog and launched into some spiritual soul-searching. It's interesting to me. Because I took no interest in it at all. But she spent many of her formative years in Italy and was surrounded by Christian -- and specifically Catholic -- iconography and by a lot more ritual and majesty than I was exposed to, growing up as I did in places like Guam and Japan. Guam is a very Catholic town, too, but I think it's too hot there for people to really get into the groove. And the religious rituals I saw in Japan, while impactful, did little to curry my interest in the papacy.

Anyway, Beulah's into it.

And if you know anything about Beulah, you know that she's also a fan of a lot of morbid, gory, horrible things. She told me tonight that she ordered a book about the "bad" popes, which came as no surprise to me. And it occurred to me that her dream publication would be a book about pope autopsies. And the more pictures the better.

I know a lot of girls who like gore. I wonder what that comes from. I'm very cringey and squeamish. I don't like to watch surgery on television. I get scared easily. I don't really like to watch scary movies, especially if I'm all by myself. And big suspenseful surprises make me throw my popcorn up in the air like a big jerk. But both of my sisters loved all the serial killer stories and the horror flicks and knowing what killed this or that celebrity and what it probably looked like. I don't even like the creature episodes of X-Files. I can find easy reasons to wallow in a sense of inadequacy, it seems.

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