19 April 2005

It's Grey, You Morons!

While driving to an appointment this morning on the other side of town, I was listening to the CBS radio news out of Chicago (WBBM). They interrupted with a special bulletin from the Vatican, resulting in a Salvador Dali moment. For the next fifteen minutes, I got to listen to four different correspondents argue about whether the smoke was black or white. Leaving aside that all smoke is grey for the moment, what was most startling was how deadpan they carried on this controversy. They didn't get it. They were arguing about "black" or "white" concerning the election of a religious leader—a religious leader whose inerrancy was proclaimed some time back.

I'd make even more smartass remarks about "grey areas" and the election of a "grey eminence" as a result of the white (or black) smoke, but I have to actually do some work today. Let's just say this wasn't one of the prouder moments for the media; nor was it a proud moment for the Church, as all somebody really needed to do was send a Blackberry message over to the official Vatican news agency to tell them "It's white this time, now genuflect to Benedict XVI!"