Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Unpopular Thoughts

I enjoyed Doctor Who when I watched it after classes in the afternoon during my Scottish schooldays. The BBC wisely programmed it for right when we'd have a break between Geometry and footer.  The daily episodes were only twenty minutes long, so it was perfect.  They were also in black and white with a budget of about five pounds.  I always found the Doctor [Jon Pertwee, in my day] prickly, peevish, obtuse, and mostly insufferable.  In other words, he was just like many 21st century, educated, Caucasian women in their thirties, which makes the recent re-casting all but perfect.

I also appreciate the new trend of dusting off tired, discarded action movie scripts and casting them with women.  Not only does this enable the studio to use something they had already paid [a little] money for, but the final product makes them look "cutting edge" and "progressive" to the American audience and is popular with the more lucrative Chinese market, as it ratifies the common view of Western women as brutish, violent, and immodest.  The movie may stink, but it'll make money for all involved. Well, except for the original scriptwriter.

Speaking of casting, I remember back a couple of decades when a deployment officer of a diocese told me she was only going to recommend gay women for parish positions as there were too many straight men in the church who had been recommended by straight, male deployment officers. Coincidentally, she was a gay woman.  See?  Same script, different casting.

During the year, in addition to working in a parish and maintaining a secular job, I am expected to attend various meetings and "clergy days".  This means 20% of the days for which I'm paid by the parish are spent anywhere but the parish.  This is complicated when one must schedule these meetings around a secular job schedule, too.  Given that 54% of Episcopal clergy are now part-time, this seems to be yet another example of the 20th century thinking that vexes the greater church.

Come to think of it, Alex Trebek would have made a good Doctor, too.