Responded John Lennon, when asked to provide an alternate handle for ‘rock and roll.’ Now, If you pressed me for a two-word surrogate for ‘theology’ I’d likely offer up…Anne Lamott…especially at this moment in the semester, when a non theologian teaching the required first-year course is mighty grateful for a conversation starter the likes of Ms. Lamott’s ‘Traveling Mercies.’ She plies a spirituality of the ordinary, this avowedly ‘self-obsessed’ recovering person; always highly ‘relatable,’ as the kids like to say: funnier–as I like to say–than Therese of Lisieux, patron saint of us neurotics everywhere.
But not ‘shockingly’ funny, the smart money tab on cousin Bobby’s new show, premiering Tuesday the 8th, 9:30 on Fox. Bobby has lectured in my theology classes; he was winning and wicked good. Four decades and a half earlier–when Aunt Ellen and Uncle Bobby and Bobby and his brothers and sister did a southern stint–we took up positions, Irish Yankee kids amok on the Fredericksburg battleground.
Our immediate families both continually moved at cross-purposes, yet connected always we remained. Then finally we returned to No. Jersey while Bobby and gang was still down in Monmouth County (just across Rte. 36 from Kevin Smith’s Quik Stop of ‘Clerks’ infamy). Just as quickly did they relocate to LA. I visited in the summer of 73 via Continental Trailways, my original battered copy of ‘On the Road’ in hand frenzied coast to coast. Bobby went on to pitch against Daryl Strawberry and John Elway; later co-wrote ‘Wedding Crashers.’ Now see this: