Published August 13, 2022 by Nan Mykel


When things and the state of the United States get too tense during blog writing, different folks let off steam in…well, different ways, whether it be by having snarks, remembering and sharing soothing old songs  (Filosofa’s Word) or  Dr.  Rex’s Wordless Wednesday and Friday Fun Facts (It Is What It Is).  And someone has Caturdays.  Me, I’m not into fun too much.  I prefer  acting out, being weird.

For example, today I dawdled on Google and marveled at all the different acronyms that have been used in titling congressional bills:

Some acronyms are more popular than others. The most popular word, SAFE, is used 131 times, meaning such things as:

  • Screening Applied Fairly and Equitably
  • Secure Access to Firearms Enhancement
  • Screening Applied Fairly and Equitably
  • Security Against Foreclosures and Education
  • Security and Accountability For Every
  • Swift Approval, Full Evaluation
  • Security and Fairness Enhancement
  • Stop Abuse for Every
  • Safe, Accountable, Fair, and Efficient
  • Security and Financial Empowerment

Other popular words include CAREFAIRSTOPHELPHOPEDREAM, and PROTECT.  [noahveltman.com/acronyms]


On a lark, giving myself free reign to be (ahem)  different,  I remembered the flying bishop as described on pages 218-219  of Colin Wilson’s 1971 book The Occult.  I was curious to see what  Google had to say about the flying bishop.  There was silence about Wilson’s “strange sickly boy  who became known as ‘Open Mouth’ because his mouth usually hung open; one commentator remarked  that ‘he was not far from what today we would call a state of feeble-mindedness’.”   But maybe Google had him listed by name?  Duh.  Wikipedia, via Google,  had him under St. Joseph of Copertino.  Wikipedia’s descripion of the flying monk  is more skeptical than Wilson’s.  No surprise there, I guess, and Wikipedia did not even list The Occult as a resource.  Wilson’s version is a happier one, and that’s what I was seeking today.  So nice I get to choose.

At the age of seventeen Joseph was accepted into the Capuchin order, but was dismissed eight months later because of total inability to concentrate.  Soon thereafter the Order of Conventuals accepted him as a stable boy, and at twenty-two he became a Franciscan priest.  One day, in the midst of his prayers after mass, he floated off the ground and  landed on the altar in a state of ecstasy. Floating in the air in a state of delight seemed to be his sole accomplishment.  The flying bishop was oberved to repeatedly fly when joyous, in full sight of  the congregation.  Kings, dukes, Leibnitz and even the Pope witnessed him floating or flying in the air.  When Joseph’s canonization was suggested after his death at the age of sixty, the Church started an investigation into his flights, and after  hundreds of depositions had been taken. he was declared a saint  on February 24, 1767 by Pope Clement XIII.

As I read on, the sources of information opened and I read that since flying was associated with witchcraft, he was called before the  holy inquisition, but after more than one session he was found not guilty, largely because it became apparent that he did not take pleasure from his levitation, was not proud of them, and could not control them. For the rest of Joseph’s life after the trial, he was shuffled around, treated by the church as a dirty little secret and moved to out of the way locations, being occasionally called back before the authority of the Inquisition for some further questioning before being maintained innocent again.  As mentioned above, four years after his death the church’s  “dirty little secret” became a saint.

Now that’s out of my system, maybe I can attend to  reblogging Bob Shepherd’s post tomorrow.  Whew!  That’s my exercise for today.

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