My priest, Monsignor Felix Fyodore Ayonsokopsosky, told me I should give up Fox News for Lent.
"You have been acting very strange lately, my son. You need to quit watching Fox News. You look terrible. You smell worse than terrible. You've become paranoid schizophrenic. It's made you a cave dweller," Monsignor Ayonsokopsosky told me after confession.
"But Father Ayonsokopsosky, Fox News has become my only contact with the outside world. I heed their advice and I'm afraid to venture 50 feet from my house. There's terrorists, left-wing nutcases, and really mean women like Megyn Kelly out there everywhere."
"No, no, no, my son. Fox News is not the light at the end of the tunnel. And the end of the tunnel is not an illusion. The tunnel is the illusion. And Fox News is a mere test pattern of the modern-day psychobabble machine," Father Ayonsokopsosky said.
He cupped his hands under a vial of holy water he was carrying and threw the liquid all over me. Somehow, it seemed refreshing, but then again, I hadn't showered or bathed for a couple of months.
"It's not a psychobabble machine," I protested. "Like my old English Comp Teacher, Feducious T. Flynt, always use to say when ending a class, 'I saw it on the news, so it has to be true.'"
"Well, my son, your old English Comp professor was insane. And now, guess what, so are you. I wish the Holy See gave me the Papal powers to prescribe medications for you. I'd give you a good dosage of Thorazine and Mellaril. And if I had a shock treatment machine in the rectory, I'd zap you about a dozen times. And come to think of it, you could really use a good lobotomy, a shave, a haircut, and maybe a new tattoo."
"So what's the damage?" I asked.
"What do you mean, 'what's the damage?'" Monsignor Ayonsokopsosky asked.
"How many prayers do I have to say to be absolved from all my sins?"
"Say one thousand 'Our Fathers', then say the 'Hail Mary' three thousand times, throw in the 'Prayer of Saint Francis", well, let me see - rattle it off about 2,300 times, then genuflect in front of the altar seven hundred times, and get the Beelzebub out of here. Beat it. Scram," the Monsignor said.
"Have I really been that sinful? Why do I have to say all those prayers and then do a total body workout just to be absolved of all my sins? Oh Monsignor, I'm doomed to a life of hell after this life ends! Oh no is me, oh woe is me."
"No, no, no, my son. It's just a way for you to get all that mind clutter about world events and the national propaganda out of your head. You're not nearly that bad. You've been tortured and tormented by those evildoers. They've put a hex on you and I'm considering calling the exorcist of the diocese. Let's face it, a good exorcism would do you a lot of good," he said.
"You're a troglodyte. That's a new word I learned on O'Reilly the other night. It means you're a 'cave dweller'. You know how Bill ends the show with those rare, obsolete words?"
"Yeah, I scribble them down and whenever I go to the corner store, I spray-paint them all over the outside of the building. Their cigarette prices are way too high and they don't have too many snacks in there. And the people that own the place are foreigners."
"Oh, you didn't mention such a sin in confession. Spraying graffiti on walls of businesses is a sin. Not a cardinal sin, but a jiminy cricket sin. So add another thousand 'Our Fathers'."
I just stood there and shook my head. I couldn't understand his logic or reasoning.
"....Yes, yes, yes, my son....And if you stick around the church for about nine hours and say all those prayers and do all that genuflecting, it will be like a boy's night out for you," he said.
"Help yourself to the communion wine. None of it's blessed yet. Don't drink too much of the white wine, since it'll make you sick and you'll have a nasty headache all day tomorrow. But the red wine's primo vino. Scharatush!"
"Wow. You are very kind, Monsignor. A true shepherd of the ratty-assed black sheep of your flock. And if I get hungry can I help myself to the hosts?"
"No, no, no. Leave them alone. I blessed them this morning. They're off limits to you. But there's a turkey, ham, salami and cheddar sub in the fridge back there. And a half a pizza. Go for it. Now I've got to get back to the rectory. Lock up the church when you leave. (He throws me the keys).
I grab the keys in mid-air and manage a smile. The Monsignor winks at me.
"And if the men in black come to visit while I'm gone, don't get upset or worried. They're not here for you, they're here for me. And don't look them in the eye. They'll hypnotize you then suck all the blood out of your veins," Monsignor Ayonsokopsosky said, then skedaddled out of the church's back door.
I headed right for the fridge to chow down on that sub. Then I'd have to be gone, with the pizza box under my arm, of course. Hannity was about to start in another fifteen minutes and it was a ten minute walk back to the house.