Opinion » Bill Cope

The Written Red

'Whas Tha Durn Pope Up T, Huh?'

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Red came to me, as always, with a question. "Ain't y' gunner do a collum on hows tha' new Cat'lic pope feller wan's t' cozy up t' them gays?" I told him no, that I don't much give a crap what popes do or don't do, and he jumped on it. "So there's y'r chance, Cope," referring to the offer I'd made to let him write a column on some topic I don't give a crap about. I thought, What harm can it do?... other than offending all of my Catholic and gay readers, that is. Besides, it will free me up for a week before the election so that I'll have plenty of time to fidget about, chewing my fingernails and attending to my nervous bladder.

So here it is, Red's "collum." He's titled it "Whas Tha Durn Pope Up T, Huh?" And I should warn you, I promised him I'd print it exactly as written.

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I aint Catlick. Lemme get that sayed first off. I aint got nottin agin Catlicks. I een got some Catlick buds what I knows from way back my grammy school days. But I aint one of em. Is was born a Babtist and Is gunner die a Babtist, except for them years when I was a George Bush Methdist. I nose how some Babtists are always saying how Catlicks are the Hoors of Baby Lawn but I aint that kind a Babtist. Is the other kind what says Hollywood is the Hoors of Baby Lawn.

So mayb you peepls whats reading this don think Is got any biness talking bout the new Pope whas sposed t be such a nice feller. Bu jus acause I aint Catlick don mean I ain't got idees bout what a Pope ought not be doin. An gull durnit when he stars spreadin that nicefulness oer to them gays a feller like me got a oblygato to speek up. Thern already too many peepl ben nice t gays ifn y ask me. Ther be gays on the t v eer time y turn it on anymor. An ther be judjes whatr sayin gays cn get themselvs hitched when everone nose God made Adem and Eev not Adem and Steev. An een heer in Idaho ther be gays whatr wantn our state lecherslechers to add some words like we aint got too many gull durn words aready. An now heer come this Pope Franksus what says we ought treets em wit mor nicefulness.

I says ptoowee on that. Ptoowee! God don't wan us t be nice to gays. Thas wy he sents dow so many harbl tarnadles and dizeazes and catrapstacies. T remint us t keep been meen t gays. Ast any gud ol Babtist preetcher. Heel tell y. If God wantd us t be nice t gays heda made mor of em truk drivrs an roofrs ensted o bally dancrs an floorists. An anothr thin...

"Alright. Alright! That's it. I've heard enough. Damn, Red, I'm not going to let you use my column to propagate these awful stereotypes and prejudices. And for God's sake, where did you learn to spell?"

"Taught m'self, Cope. Too many o' them words don' look like what they sound, so I fix 'em. An' you cain't stop me now. I ain't even got t' m' main point yet."

"But you're going to drive away half my readership."

"You promised, Cope! Y'ain't gonna go back on y'r word, is y'?"

"Oooooooooo... fine! But let's wrap this up. Get to your point."

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An anothr thin. We need t get us ar own Pope. All thees yeers, them Catlicks heer in Merica been letting some feller way yonder over in som nuther country be telling em wha t do. Thas bullarky ifn y ask me. Wha the deel? Aint we got no Pope material heer in the U an S of A?

Already Is cn heer them Catlicks whinin. Bu Red, ther cn only be one Pope. An hes got t live in that Vadicn City like he was fr all them hunerts o yeers.

I says ptoowee on tha. Ptoowee! Whas Vadicn City got wha Orlando aint got? Or Branson? Is tell y, ifn we had r own Pope livn in Branson, all them Catlicks frm all oer Merica could go ther anytime wht they felt lik getn blessd up an communifucated. An then afterwars they cud go see the Oak Ridge Boys. Hows cud y beet that? Baby Jesus blood wine an Elvira. All n one trip.

But the main thin is wudnt be no Catlicks cozyn up t no gays ifn we had r own gud ol Merica growd Pope. An I nose jus how t pick im. We spred out a blanket and put alotta belongins from one the dead Popes along wit stuf wht dint belong t anbody mportant. Toothbrushrs an wallets an pocktnives an shotguns an such. Then a few o them gud ol preetchers like wha we see on Sundy mornin t v can pick the thins they getta Popey vibe offn. And wha eer preetcher picks the mos dead Pope stuff is the winnr an we cn burn som white doves t let all the Catlicks nose thers a new Pope in town.

Then asoon as he gets int his Pope duds he cn go t tellin folks ther aint gon be no gays comin t tha church no mor nless they go t one o them progrms wha turns em back int...

"Alright, Red. Time's up. You made your point."

"Hold on, Cope. Is ain't got t' the part 'bout havin a boot camp f'r gays what wants t' get 'emselves fixed. I figger Texas 'bout as good a place as any f'r tha'."

"Look, I didn't say you could just go on and on. And besides, I have to leave room on the page for an apology, anyway. So you're done."

"Wha' you mean, apol'gy?"

To any Catholics, members of the LGBT community, and/or lovers of the English language, I apologize from the bottom of my heart for what you have just read.

—Bill Cope