It would seem that this is the first kick arse article in which there is a slight possibility that I may one day become the subject of my rambling, however unlikely that may be. Alright, so there's still the matter of my being an atheist, but I have faith that I will be able to combat this. Honestly.

1. Being old

Slightly more in the theme of 'why it would kick arse to be the current pope', being a doddering old git has considerable benefits. Unless you're living alone or something, in which case it's a pain in the arse, but when you're head of the Roman Catholic Church, it's a blast! Remember that your every word is noted down by Christians around the world. Imagine how much more interesting catholicism would be if half the Pope's speeches went along the lines of 'What? What? Mm. Who's this? Where's my tea?' or similar. Of course, you have to wonder how the current pope would deal with the second coming of Jesus.

JC: I have returned, gentle mortals!

ADVISOR: Mr. Pope! We have a special visitor for you!

POPE: Mm? What? Who're you?

ADVISOR: I'm your advisor of 30 years, Mr. Pope. And look who's returned to Earth this morning!

JC: Be excellent to each other!

POPE: What? Who's this young whippersnapper?

ADVISOR: Er ... this is Jesus Christ, our lord. Remember? He died for all our sins?

POPE: What? I didn't vote for him. Can't stand hippies. Tell him to cut his hair.

ADVISOR: I'm very sorry about this, Mr. Christ.

JC: You wait 'till my dad hears about this.

2. Living in a huge palace

Whenever I think of the Vatican and the doddering old Pope together I always imagine him going through second childhood syndrome and pedalling furiously on a plastic tricycle down the immaculately clean corridors, making 'Brrrrm! Brrrrm!' noises between his lips. I then go a little further and imagine bishops and things diving out of the way, and the pope wearing his little pope hat and making screeching noises as he turns corners. Then he'd bump into someone's ladder and they'd fall to their deaths. Someone should film that. It'd be great. It'd be like an incredibly ironic version of the Omen.

3. Being head of a major religion

The Pope is next in line to God. Anything he says about catholicism goes without argument. If, for instance, he ate lime jelly on a Thursday and enjoyed it very much, he could theoretically declare lime jelly a sacred object and mark every Thursday as a day when all Catholics had to eat lime jelly. A small cult might grow up where people only eat lime jelly and baptise children in huge vats of the stuff. If he was sitting on his balcony making a big speech to a huge crowd he could suddenly burst into a song from The Sound of Music and everyone would have to join in, thinking that God loves Judy Garland.

If he did kill someone with his plastic tricycle he wouldn't get locked up or anything. No, they'd mark it 'Knock People Off Ladders Day' and introduce a festival where people parade around Rome on plastic tricycles and ladders. And if I was Pope, I'd look down on all those people doing exactly what I tell them to, and I'd laugh. I'd laugh like the maniac I am.

Also, you get to decide who becomes a saint. That'd rock! If I was Pope I'd mark every even date as 'St Yahtzee's Day' and every odd date as 'St Bruce Campbell's Day'. It would bring a whole new irony to Ash Wednesday.

4. Being close friends with a major deity

I always cringe at those scenes in films where kids get bullied by older kids with quiffs and leather jackets. And I always enjoy the bits where the kids bring their older brothers over and get them to beat the bullies to a bloody pulp on the floor. Now, imagine the bullied kids being the Pope and imagine the older brother being God. Bit hard to get your head round, isn't it. But it's true! The Pope has a direct line to the almighty. The first three buttons on his automatic dialler are labelled 'The Father', 'The Son' and 'The Holy Ghost'. If that was true you wouldn't dare touch the old bastard! Except God doesn't beat people to a bloody pulp on the floor, he just smites them. 'Smite' is a special word which means 'beat people to a bloody pulp on the floor' if you're God.


5. No sex

Did you hear about the statement the Pope made a few years back saying 'there will be no sex in heaven'? Did you remember how disappointed you were if you did? Well, the Pope doesn't understand the problem, 'cos he doesn't know what an orgasm is. From birth he's raised to the belief that there's no such thing as sex and people are brought by the stork, or at least grown organically in special modified bean pods in the Vatican gardens. Obviously he found out about sex eventually, assumed it was evil, and said there wouldn't be any in heaven. Bastard!

SCENE 2: Heaven

(The Holy Ghost replaces phone. God emerges from a room, doing up his belt)

GOD: Who was that on the phone?

HOLY GHOST: The Pope. He wanted to know if there's any sex up here.

GOD: (laughs) And you said?

HOLY GHOST: I said, 'It's Heaven, you old twat, it's paradise, what do you think?'

(Jesus rushes in)

JC: Dad! HG! The Pope's been going round saying there's no sex up here!

GOD: What! But we're at it like knives 24/7! If the public thinks there's no sex they won't want to come here anymore!

HOLY GHOST: That doddering old git! I'm gonna go smite him.

JC: No! We must preach a message of peace and non-killing!

(God and HG exchange looks)

GOD: Go clean your room, young man.

JC: Aww. (leaves)

GOD: (to Holy Ghost) I'm gonna go back in my harem for a few hours. You try and sort this mess up. And take that sheet off your head!


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