By Art Kumbalek 52 minutes ago
I’m Art Kumbalek and man oh manischewitz what a world, ain’a? So the springtime is here to stay, I hear. We’ll see about that. I’ll tell you, mine own two personal signs that spring is truly here are when the first member of the Brewers’ mound crew blows out his soupbone and parks his butt on the DL for the rest of the season/career, and when I blow off writing my essay for the issue of the good Shepherd that appears right before Easter Sunday because more pressing for me than slapping a boatload of palaver together is hooking up with the fellas over by the Uptowner tavern/charm school majestically crammed onto the corner of wistfully hysteric Humboldt Boulevard and the fabled Center Street—where today is always at least a day before tomorrow, and yesterday may gosh darn well be today.
But before I go, what with the Passover and Easter family get-togethers that may be on your docket, here’s a little story you might want to bring and share:
So a priest and a rabbi are seatmates flying the friendly skies. The priest opens the conversation by saying, “I know that in your religion, you are not supposed to eat pork, but have you ever tasted it?” And the rabbi says, “I must tell you the truth. Yes I have, on the odd occasion.”
It was now the rabbi’s turn. “Your religion, Father, I know that you are to be celibate, but...” Interrupting, the priest said, “I know what you’re going to ask, Rabbi. Alas, I have succumbed, once or twice.” "There was silence. And the rabbi said, “Better than pork, am I right?” Ba-ding! OK, got to go. Come along if you’d like, but you buy the first round. Let’s get going.
Julius: Any you’s guys know if any local radio stations play 24-hour continuous Easter music this time of year?
Ernie: Good focking question ’cause I believe Easter ought to be a way bigger holiday than Christmas. What’s such the big deal with Christmas? For christ sakes, a lot of really important guys get born all the time, but how many guys actually rise from the dead? Now that’s something to write home about, ain’a?
Little Jimmy Iodine: Jeez, off the top of my head, I can only think of two other guys who got up from the dead—Richard Nixon in 1968 and that John Travolta actor after he made the “Pulp whatcha-call-it.”
Emil: Easter will never be bigger than the Christmas because every year they dick with the goddamn date it’s supposed to be on. Is that because Easter comes in spring and the Pope likes to check the weather forecast in the Farmers’ Almanac first before he chooses the exact date to make sure the people have a nice day for their Easter parade?
Julius: You talk like a sausage, Emil.
Herbie: You focking bunch of nitwits. We go through this every year. How many times I got to tell you’s the exact date when Christ became resurrected has nothing to do when Easter comes. Easter comes the first Sunday after the full moon, also known as the paschal moon, that comes after the vernal equinox. Now, if the paschal moon—deduced from a system of golden numbers and epacts and does not necessarily coincide with the astronomical full moon—occurs on a Sunday, Easter day is the succeeding Sunday. Thus, unless you’re a focking idiot, you know that Easter can fall anywheres between March 22 and April 25.
Ray: Thank you, Mr. Bri-focking-ttanica. What the fock, I never heard Sister talk meshuggah like that when she explained the Easter to us. But I tell you, when it comes to religion and they try to figure a date by using bullshit like full moons, equinoxes and golden numbers, it makes a guy feel like instead of going to the Pick ’N Pocket for the Easter ham, he ought to go buy a whole pig somewheres and slaughter it right there on his front lawn for the sacrifice. And maybe a couple of goats to boot.
Little Jimmy: Hey, Artie! Over here. Put a load on your keister.
Art: Hey gents, what do you know, what do you hear.
Emil: I hear Easter falls on a Sunday this year.
Herbie: The other day on the bus, this guy sitting next to me asked if I’ve accepted Jesus Christ as my lord and savior. I said I could accept Jesus as a son of a god—the son of a god who never flushed a toilet or picked up a bar tab. Sure, god knows everything, but do you think he ever had to remember where his focking car keys were? I think not. But how ’bout a daughter of god? I can and will only accept Marilyn Monroe as my saviour-ess. Now there’s a Second Coming I could get behind, so to speaketh.
(Hey, it’s getting late and I know you got to go, but thanks for letting us bend your ear, ’cause I’m Art Kumbalek and I told you so.)