Friday, April 10, 2009

Things Papal, or not

Because I wrote a book called What to Wear to See the Pope, which many people - including those who should know better - assumed wrongly was largely autobiographical, they also assume that I did actually see the Pope.
For the record, I have never seen the Pope. Not in Rome and not in Yonkers. Not in Uruguay.
But I did see a movie yesterday called The Pope's Toilet. My friend Becky and I went to MOMA, ostensibly to see paintings from Picasso's blue period, because she is obsessed with all things blue. As we bought tickets I noticed that in 20 minutes there was a showing of The Pope's Toilet. A title conceived to pique one's interest? The gentlemen at the desk told me they had received many irate calls about the film. Of course we had to abandon Picasso and his blues, and descend into the theater. It was a lovely film, about a bicycling smuggler who hopes to make money with a pay toilet when the Pope's visit brings the devout hordes into Melo, Uruguay. The Pope and the Popemobile make their scheduled appearance, but the devout hordes never materialize. Don't count on a happy ending. (I did, and was very sad.)


Rebecca Rice said...

It is a testament to your fictional gifts that your readers do assume you've seen the Pope!

Diggitt said...

I can recall a visit somewhere by Great Britain's Princess Margaret. The folks whose institution she was visiting built a whole new lavatory for the princess. The new toilet was pink and so was its seat, and so were the sink and walls and ceiling. The guy who did it was so pleased with the project! Afterwards reporters visited and he had to admit, sadly, that the princess had not entered the lavatory.

I have been wondering ever since what these larger-than-life people do, use Depends? These days someone like that goes into a quasipublic lavatory and leaves a used tissue behind, it will find its way to eBay.

There's a photograph around that shows the Buckingham Palace bathtub used by the royal family. During WW2, the story goes, the king painted a line two or three inches above the bottom, and warm water was not supposed to be higher than that line. It was a very homely tub.

I'm really sorry you didn't get to see the pope. That was all a story? Even the sari and the bike?