no wheat for me, please

Church Says Girl’s Communion Not Valid

According to the Vatican, communion wafers must have some unleavened wheat in them. Many parishes interpret this to mean that a communion is not valid unless this rule is kept.

Of course when you have a little girl who can’t eat wheat because she could die, one might argue that an exception would be made. Of course, it’s not for the Bishop of New Jersey to, you know, make any kind of rational sense.

Now, in its defense, the entire diocese can’t be called “jackass.” When their “church’s pastor refused to allow a substitute, a priest at a nearby parish volunteered to offer one.” Luckily for the forces of stupidity, “the diocese told the priest that the church would not validate Haley’s sacrament because of the substitute wafer.”

This doesn’t make sense. Now, in some sense, Catholic dogma is often very important. It’s not really a religion unless you have your rules about what’s right and wrong – there should be some guidelines that allow people to become enlightened; ostensibly, the point of any religion. Wheat, however, cannot be construed as being a stepping stone on the path to greatness. Why? Because it’s wheat! JC transubstantiated bread into his own body, and wine into his own blood. As far as I know, there’s no record of him saying, “Right. Now, take notes y’all. The bread should contain unleavened wheat, and the wine? it should be red. And 15% alcohol by volume.”

The food groups are not important when taking communion. Communing with god is! How hard is this? Do I have to join the priest hood just so I can go around kicking ass and taking names? I could be a Jesuit. That sounds fun.


Sound my age, and russian gymnasts

So, today, I got a phonecall. I had a chance to enter a raffle! To win a bed! There were, unfortunately, two problems: one on their end, and one on mine. My problem was that, well, I already have a bed; while I’m sure I could find a use for two, I don’t really have the space. Their problem was that there were restrictions on who could enter the contest: One had to be at least 30 years old. The (nice?) lady on the other end of the line says to me, “You must be 30 years or older. Are you at least 30? You sound young.”

I sound young? I mean, hello? While I don’t sound like a crotchety old man, I’m not quite sure I like “you sound young.” I sound: I don’t know. Not young. Yet, not really old. Preferably, I’d sound like that perfect age that we think greek gods are. What would that be? Somehow, I imagine it being a multiple of five.

That got me thinking about olympic gymnastics. How, you ask, did I jump from point A to point B? Well, honestly, I have no idea. Today, I was thinking I should write about A and B. It’s just your luck that I’ve somehow tried to link the two.

Right, Olympic gymnastics is fascinating. Usually, I find both men’s and women’s completely engrossing. Men’s (I have an entire story about that apostrophe, but we’re going leave that for a book review) gymnastics is amazing, mainly because you have these guys that look mostly normal; except for the fact that they’re huge, and they can perform feats of strength, flexibility, and balance that, well, I can’t. That’s really it; you look at them and think, “I could do that. If I worked out a lot, and was far more disciplined than I actually am. Except, I’m not.” Women’s gymnastics is interesting for some of the same reasons, except they’re not quite as normal. Female gymnasts are smaller, and younger. So, in that respect, they’re not quite as impressive. In another, they’re more impressive, because they peak so early. At 15, you know what I was doing? Right, I don’t either. I think I had a driver’s permit. That was the sum total of my accomplishments. That, and a decent score on the SAT.

So, I’m completely fascinated by russian gymnast Svetlana Khorkina. At twenty-five, she’s old for a gymnast, and completely aloof. When she does well, there’s little fanfare; when she does badly, she’s far more vocal. I remember her competing in 1996 (when the US catapulted to the fore, forcing the russians to take silver), and in 2000 when the vault was too low.

I’d swear there was a point to all this, and, luckily I’ve already said it: I’m completely fascinated by an old female russian gymnast. That, and I’m completely engrossed by the olympics. From swimming to fencing, to gymnastics and kayaking: I can’t think of a better way to spend two weeks.

Well, that’s not true. I suppose I could go outside. That, and maybe get some work done.