When I first heard that the job of Pope was soon going to be free I was kind of tempted to send off an application to Rome. I mean, who wouldn’t want to sit around all day hearing juicy confessions and having everyone you meet kiss your ring?
However, the more I thought about it the more I realized that this job just isn’t for me. If you want to want to know why you should avoid putting your name forward for the next conclave then here are the top reasons.
1. No Cutting Edge Clothes
Any job description which mentions the need to wear a uniform which includes items like a house dress, a chasuble and a cassock immediately sets alarm bells ringing, doesn’t it? When did you ever see a Pope wearing jeans or a nice jacket? You would think that the trendy Italians would come up with some of racy, cutting edge designs like semi transparent cassocks and mitres with GPS and a Wi-Fi connection. Sadly you would need to wear the same sort of gear which your predecessors wore centuries ago and which probably weren’t even in fashion back then.
2. I Would Need to Speak How Many Languages?
Learning one language kind of sucks but to be the Pope you need to know lots of them. For a start, everyone around you speaks in a dead language and they expect you to communicate with everyone in the world in their native language. You can’t exactly rock up to Buenos Aires or Paris and say, “Hey, I am just going to do this mass thing in English if you don’t mind”. Pope John Paul II famously learned 12 foreign tongues but all that studying wouldn’t leave you a lot of time for watching American Idol after mass.
3. The Popemobile Is Not a Good Look
I mean, what is that thing? Can you buy one of those from your local Popemobile dealer or did they make it especially for the Pontiff? I don’t think you can get up to any great speeds in the Popemobile and another drawback is that if you ever crashed into a parked car or ran over a dog the cops wouldn’t have too much trouble finding out who was to blame.
4. You Can’t Dabble with the Ladies
Wouldn’t it be a great chat up line; “Hi, I am the Pope. Do you want me to hear your confessions now or in the morning?” Sadly, the ladies will be off limits for you from the moment you slip on the papal cassock for the first time. You could throw yourself into the job and start taking bromide in your tea like British soldiers but at some point you are going to feel the urge to do something which Popes simply can’t do.
5. Drinking Heavily Is Probably Out of the Question
I have always wondered what the wine that priests drink tastes like. Is it good enough that you would fill your chalice up to the brim and truly savor it while you were reading mass? I guess all that incense in the air would give it a certain earthiness but I am not sure I could get the idea of it really being blood out of my head. It is the only chance you would have to drink so you would want to make the most of it, though. After all, you aren’t going to be able to drive round the Vatican City in the Popemobile while wearing your house dress and swigging from a bottle of whisky without causing a bit of a stir.