After a year of pre-release news articles, alleged death threats to filmmaker Mel Gibson and star Jim Caviezel, the actual death of a patron who suffered a heart attack during screening, sold-out theaters and boffo box office, what more could possibly hype The Passion of the Christ? How about the body of Christ turning up in Orange County? The Orange County Sheriff's Departmenton Feb. 20 faxes us an artist's rendering of a man found near the intersection of West Kimberly and South Placentia avenues in Anaheim on Dec. 26, 2002—the day after you-know-who's 2002nd birthday—and holy shit if he doesn't look like Mr. Jesus H. Christhimself. Just look at the accompanying drawing; the likeness to the western image of the son of God is unmistakable. Deputies, who need the public's help to identify the man, pin his age between 45 to 64, but as anyone who's seen The Passion knows, the world's most famous carpenter was buff and can play much younger than 2002. More clues: the man was homeless (the world's most famous rabbi was a wanderer); five feet 10 and 118 pounds (befitting our image of the svelte messiah); Caucasian or Hispanic (Caucasian + Hispanic = Galilean); went by "Sonny" (the son of you-know-who); and bore a tattoo with the words "Homeward Bound" (you know which home he was bound for). One mystery: he also had tats of a ship, a sailor and the words "U.S. Coast Guard." Guess that explains those missing years in the Bible.
SUPER BOWLED-OVER As mega-broadcaster after mega-broadcastervows before a congressional committee on Feb. 27 they will clean up their own acts in the wake of Janet Jackson's exposed boobage, Representative Christopher Cox (R-Newport Beach) tells colleagues nippalia is a grave threat to our fair republic. His evidence: Cox says his five-year-old sondid not see the Super Bowl halftime show, but when the congressman recently called for a "halftime" while wrestling around with the kid, his son pulled off his T-shirt to expose a male teat and ask, "Halftime show?" Cox tells his fellow panelists he's a libertarian who does not condone the government telling Americans what to say or how to act. But when innocent kindergartners pick up stuff like that on the playgrounds of America, Cox fumes, TV's influence has spread too far, by gum! Yes, it was much better back in the days when five-year-olds only learned potty humor, fat jokes and racist taunts at recess. IF IT'S BROWN, DRINK IT DOWNAs the Orange County Water District moves ahead with plans to turn human waste into drinking water, Japanese municipalities report that drinkable turds have saved them, according to the Feb. 27 Mainichi Daily News. International treaties force tiny towns such as Tenkawato stop pouring man shit directly into the ocean by 2007. An Osaka water-purification company came up with a system using the right balance of sludge-munching microbes to make water from feces—try that, Jesus!—after much trial and yuck. Purification plant president Kunihiko Yamamoto says, "There was shit everywhere" and, "Every day was a huge battle against poop" and, "After a little while, I got used to the idea of wearing clothes covered in a bit of poop." (Here's one vote for granting raises to everyone who'll deal with what's politely called the Orange County Groundwater Replenishment System.) But fear not, tap-water drinkers, for the liquid pouring from Tenkawa's pipes is now reportedly cleaner than that flowing through most Japanese rivers, although the recycled version is turd-colored because of "bile pigment." Remind us to drink only whiskey next time we're in Tokyo. YOU BET YOUR LIFE Your favorite campaign stopwatch gets a mysterious fax with no cover sheet or return phone number on Feb. 27 stating that "Liberal Labor Unions, Pechanga Gambling Tribe Pour $600,000 into Maddox." The message goes on to accuse unsuccessful Republican state Senate candidate Ken Maddox of having "an extreme pro-casino, pro-labor voting record in the Assembly." The fax says his winning opponent John Campbellis strictly pro-business, a thorn in the side of labor ("especially public-employee labor unions") and a staunch campaigner for Governor Gray Davis' recall and Arnold Schwarzenegger's election, both of which succeeded, the fax notes, despite Pechanga contributions of more than $3 million to fight the recall and support Cruz Bustamante. If the $600,000 figure is accurate, fine. It's fair to expose that—just as it's fair to expose all the polluters, land rapers and white-collar criminals who've backed Campbell's political career over the years. But the reason this fax was anonymous probably has to do with the divisive reference to the Pechanga Gambling Tribe. Was it the Pechanga who gave 3-1 odds against Custersurviving Little Bighorn or the Cherokee? Perhaps Pechanga was the tribe that gambled the white man would live with them in harmony and not drive entire peoples off their land, wipe them out with war and disease, and force them into poverty as polluters, land rapers and white-collar criminals reign supreme.
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Midnight Christianity Etiquette Guide
As we welcome former participants of Midnight Insanity's screenings of The Rocky Horror Picture Show, Midnight Christianity would like to offer the following tips to properly enjoy our late-night showings of The Passion of the Christ. First, anyone can dress up as Roman soldiers, Hebrew high holy men, peasants, lost boys and most disciples, but you MUST audition for main roles such as Pontius Pilate, high priest Caiphas, Claudia Procles, the Marys (Magdalene and mother), Peter, Judas, the devil and, of course, Jesus. Be aware that final selection of the overly flamboyant King Herod will be done by secret ballot due to the high number of Midnight Insanity applicants.
ACCEPTABLE PROPS TO THROW AT THE SCREEN: Moonpies (whenever the full moon is shown—and it's shown a lot), pennies (whenever Judas' 30 pieces of silver hit the ground), rice (to symbolize the maggot slithering into the devil's nostril), rubber snakes (the devil's serpent that crawls toward Jesus) and Avon Ruby Rogue No. 5 lipstick (when blood covers Mary's lips after she kisses Christ's foot). ACCEPTABLE RESPONSES TO SHOUT AT THE SCREEN:The "Trojan Man" theme from the popular condom commercial (whenever Roman soldiers appear), "Nice mount!" (whenever the high ground where Jesus gave a sermon and was crucified is shown), "HONDA!" (after Jesus says, "I lay down of my own accord"), "PRIEST!" (after anyone onscreen yells, "Judas!"), and "I can see my house from here" (right as Jesus' cross is pulled upright). UNACCEPTABLE RESPONSES TO SHOUT AT THE SCREEN:"Run, Forrest, Run" (when Peter darts into the forest to avoid capture), "KRAMER!" (when a Joseph the Beloved bursts through Mary's door) and "He's not just the owner of Hair Club for Men—he's a member!" (when King Herod puts on his wig). Also, absolutely NO humming "Stuck in the Middle With You" after the ear of Caiphas' servent is lopped off or "If I Had a Hammer" when nails are driven into Christ. PROGRAM CHANGE: Due to overuse caused by the many instances in which Jesus is whipped, we will no longer herald each strike with "Thank you, sir, may I have another?" Instead, we'll confine ourselves to yelling, "That's gonna leave a mark"—but ONLY during the half dozen or so times that the sight of squirting blood and flesh being torn from Jesus' torso is accompanied by squishy sounds.