Well, this certainly constitutes a shocker. It’s actually difficult to believe that they actually named John Ratzenberger the new pope, but it seems true. It’s not really a traditional appointment, but maybe the church has decided that it’s time to pay tribute to pop culture, you know? Perhaps an attempt to get a more younger, hipper kind of believer inside those church doors? After all, the church today is largely made up of older people. That said, it was certainly a day of wide-eyed surprise for the pilgrims who made their way to St. Peter’s Square yesterday in Rome.

So it’s true. Just minutes after the plume of white smoke billowed out of the chimney, John Ratzenberger emerged yesterday on the Vatican balcony as the 265th pontiff! As the tens of thousands of stunned, yet grateful people gathered in St. Peter’s Square to cheer him, Ratzenberger paused, raised his arms, and made his first address to the waiting throng of the devoted:

“You know, it’s a little known fact that the smartest animal is a pig. Scientists say if pigs had thumbs and a language, they could be trained to do simple manual labor. They give you 20-30 years of loyal service and then at their retirement dinner you can eat them.”

With that, Ratzenberger walked back in to survey his new surroundings and was heard to say “oh boy, when the gang from Cheers comes to visit, there’s going to be real hijinks!”

Oh – wait a minute here. The new pope’s name is Joseph Ratzinger. Nevermind.

Well, in other very amusing tidbits, it seems that the song “Total Eclipse of the Heart” hasn’t aged so well. Before I get to the link, though, I must relay a childhood story. I remember one day after school, I had rode my bike across town to hang out with some friends. We had just discovered girls, so you can imagine what it was we were doing – riding our bikes past cute girls houses to see if they’d come out and pay just a smidge of attention to us. Of course, we’d never actually go knock on the door, though. That would be far too logical and we all know from experience that logic isn’t something many young teen boys posess much of. Oh, the stories I could tell.

Anyway, we pulled into the driveway of one Jenny Bailey and we caught her at the right time – she was standing there at the door, and “Total Eclipse of the Heart” was just absolutely cranking on the stereo and she was singing right along. You could hear it a block away (the song, not Jenny). Ever since then, whenever I hear that song, I think of Jenny Bailey standing in her doorway.

My point has nothing whatsoever to do with Jenny Bailey. My point is this: some dudes did a rendition of this song that must be seen to be believed (the top link is a DivX file, the bottom link can be viewed using Quicktime). Make it a point to watch this. It has it all – old kitchen appliances, ass cracks, long beards….the works. I’m here to help you through the day, kids. Tip of the hat here to to Dan for pointing this one out. A classic.