Good evening Mr. & Mrs. Catholic, and all you other Christians at sea. Welcome to the Weekly Newsreel sponsored once again by the fine folks at Acts of the Apostasy, home of the 3 1/2 Time-Outs Tuesday. Now off to press.
DATELINE: PERNAMBUCO - According to Fox News Latino, “three people accused of killing at least three women in the northeastern Brazilian state of Pernambuco said they ate some of their victims' flesh and also used it to make the empanadas they sold to their neighbors.” The accused claim they belong to a sect that receives orders from a "voice" to do away with women they consider evil, dining on their flesh as part of a purification ritual. Shows what I know. I’d always heard it’s us Catholics who were supposed to be the cannibals.
DATELINE: HOLLYWOOD – It’s the rare moment when pop science/entertainment site ion9 posts anything friendly towards religion, so it’s no surprise that “after weeks of hot debating, io9's readers have now officially picked the very worst science fiction movie of all time” and it turns out to be one with religious undertones. What is surprising, however, is the religion in question isn’t Christianity. Nope, it turns out that L. Ron Hubbard’s brainchild, Scientology, is the guilty party behind the most atrocious cinematic sci-fi offering ever. That’s right, after whittling down a list that included everything from Catwoman to Highlander II, it was Battlefield Earth which took top (or perhaps bottom) honors in the polling. Sorry, Scientologists. At least you’ll always have Tom Cruise.
DATELINE: SOMEWHERE TOO CLOSE TO ME - Over the course of my life I’ve been called a jerk by more people than I would care to count, and to tell the truth, most of them have been justified in doing so. But it appears one of the things I’ve been consistently rude about all these years may not have been completely my fault. The New York Times reports that “for people with a condition that some scientists call misophonia, mealtime can be torture. The sounds of other people eating - chewing, chomping, slurping, gurgling - can send them into an instantaneous, blood-boiling rage… The condition almost always begins in late childhood or early adolescence and worsens over time, often expanding to include more trigger sounds, usually those of eating and breathing… Aage R. Moller, a neuroscientist at the University of Texas at Dallas… believes the condition is hard-wired, like right or left-handedness, and is probably not an auditory disorder but a ‘physiological abnormality’ that resides in brain structures activated by processed sound.” So to all the friends and family who over the years have suffered my wrath at the dinner table, please forgive me. Apparently you were not, in fact, EATING LIKE A @#*%^@! GOAT WITH THE TABLE MANNERS OF A SPASTIC VIKING!!! It was just me and my messed up physiology. Fortunately, over the past decade or so, I’ve been able to train myself to suppress my angry outbursts when eating with others, although doing so often makes me appear distracted or uninterested in my tablemates. So if any of you reading this ever find yourself dining with me and I seem inattentive, please don’t take it personally. It’s not because I don’t like you… I’m just trying not to think about murdering you.
I view my little problem with the sound of eating as just another thing to work around. Everybody’s got their own little hang-ups, after all. But for those dealing with more serious issues, the National Catholic Partnership on Disability, established in 1982 to foster implementation of the Pastoral Statement of U.S. Catholic Bishops on People with Disabilities, has a ton of resources worth checking out.
And with that it’s time to sign off another Newsreel, as is our custom, with the immortal words of the great Les Nessman. Good evening, and may the good news be yours.