Monday, September 29, 2014

Yet Another Weekend Mass at St. Elsewhere ...

**This entry was posted on September 29, 2014.**

Dawn over the beach at Cape May, N.J., this morning, 6:51AM September 29, 2014.

My mom sent me this picture a short while ago. She has been in Cape May this weekend though I think she and Ray are returning today.


Just a brief Monday morning update.

So another pointless weekend has concluded in which I did nothing but spend and drink too much, although I got in a good gym workout on Saturday. Yesterday was a total bust in that I didn't even take a bike ride. Instead, I sat inside St. Matthew's Cathedral for about 45 minutes as the place filled up ahead of the 530PM mass, for which I did not stay. I left -- and had to run the usual gauntlet of aggressive panhandlers in front of the church steps -- and went to No. 9. Later, I went to Larry's Lounge.

The interior of St. Matthew's Cathedral, Washington, D.C., 4:49PM September 28, 2014.


St. Matthew's is pleasant enough inside (and there was even Gregorian chant music being piped in through the speakers), but the place is also a de facto homeless shelter when it is open. (I guess most urban churches are like that.) One lady in particular has lived in and on the steps of the cathedral for at least 15 years. She has her bedding including this old, dirty umbrella that she is able to keep in a little storage space in the church. She has slept outside in all imaginable weather including large snowstorms, sleet, rain, and bitter cold during that time.

Communion wafers and some sort of oil on a little table that I don't think is supposed to be all out in the open like that.


She is not an aggressive panhandler at all. Indeed, she won't even take any money unless you call it a donation. She's pleasant enough to talk to (as I have done a few times over the years.) She's just in her own devoutly Catholic world, though clearly mentally ill as well. (I think someone helps her to use the nearby National Capital YMCA in the morning.)

St. Anthony's Chapel, St. Matthew's Cathedral, 5:21PM September 28, 2014.


I used to spend a lot of time at St. Matthew's back in the mid-1990s -- going to the 5:30PM Sunday mass before JR's happy hour time and then for a few years hanging around that crazy rightwing single men's group (the St. Lawrence Society) that used to meet there because I liked this awful person named Tim who is long gone from there. The church's congregation is a mix of people with a sizable component of young, affluent gay men next to the old, working poor Hispanic women.

And let's not even start with Father, now Monsignor Watkins, who isn't even at St. Matthew's anymore but has moved his one-man Italian Operatic and Drag Show Society to another nearby church (last I heard, it was Immaculate Conception) as he dreams of being the Archbishop of the Archdiocese of Washington, D.C.

St. Anthony's Chapel, St. Matthew's Cathedral, 5:21PM September 28, 2014.

Now that we have this awesome pope -- Pope Francis -- I can actually go back to Catholic Church and not feel agitated, annoyed, or angry.


Mgr. Watkins is such a learned man, too, with 18 letters after his name including Ph.D., because I always want my spiritual minister to have a doctorate, speak Italian and Greek (even during Confession), rudely turn away even when you compliment his theatrical performances, and above all else, have the finest dining experiences.

As for St. Matthew's Cathedral, Monsignor Jameson is still the rector there after all these years. He is a nice guy. I like him.

Speaking of wealth and who doesn't have it versus who does, read Paul Krugman's New York Times op-ed today (link embedded): Our Invisible Rich. By this, he means the top 0.1 percent multi-millionaires and billionaires whose lives are so far removed from most Americans that the latter actually have little idea how unequal our society has become in this new and ugly Gilded Age.

As always, also, read Prof. Krugman's regularly updated blog as well.

Changing subjects, I really need a haircut. I'm starting to look like an ashen-gray chia head. I suppose I could go to the Hair Cutter right after work, except that would interfere with my Monday gym night.

Maybe I'll go tomorrow ... except that would interfere with my occasional Tuesday night happy hour ... so maybe Wednesday ... except that is also a gym night. Definitely Thursday. Unless it's Friday, which is the ideal day.

I would have gone last Friday except I had that Medieval Madness dinner theatre to attend.

But I can't stand how my hair feels all big and poofy, and I am running out of that CHI pomade stuff, so maybe I'll go today.

OK, that's all for now. I'm just going to try to have a low-key, productive week. My next update might not be until Tuesday night.


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