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Penn Magazine November 2017

The inaugural issue of Penn Magazine


66/Penn Magazine/November 2017

The News from Moon Rock Lake At the close of each episode of The New American Dream Radio Show Chuck Gregory performs The News Well, it’s been another long week in Moon Rock Lake, Ohio, my hometown, at the end of the empire. Father Ralph is pastor of “Good God What Is It Good For” Catholic parish in Moon Rock Lake. It’s his home. He grew up in this town. “ ...why did you treat Mr. Garrison as you did, which is to say quite rudely, almost as if you were accusing him of doing wrong by trying to find the killers of President Kennedy. GGWGF was his first assignment out of St. Paul Seminary and after he had his run-around of assignments over the course of the next forty years, he asked to come back home. His last stop. End of the line. Ballgame’s over. Stick those matches and lighters in the air and everyone weave back and forth and hum Freebird. Father Ralph doesn’t have to do much in Moon Rock Lake, along the lines of saving the world .. but he was listening on TV about Wisconsin when they had their little revolution a few years back. And he found the yellow pad in the middle drawer and he thought he might just see what might come out if he prepared a homily ahead of time one last time. He slid his rolling chair to his desk and tugged hard on the middle draw- er, raked through the vanilla folders and found the old homily he wanted to give again that Sunday … maybe now was the time. The altar area smelled of the branches of evergreen curled around the toes of Saint Joseph and Mary on either side of the altar that nobody took down from last Christmas … or the Christmas before. “... Well, anywhoo, there was this child I recall, back a hundred years ago, in the past century in nineteen hundred and sixty-three. “This young boy was standing at the green table, still gripping his Flintstones lunch box. “The morning kids had just left. The brand new shiny metal box held his banana and his beads for the Christmas tree. On the blackboard, which covered the whole one side of the room, as big as a bus, his teacher had engraved in new, white chalk: President John F. Kennedy. “Soon all the children were gathered for the afternoon session. They stood beside their tables for the Pledge of Allegiance. Just as they had finished, the principal, Sister Mary, came in and talked to Sister George. “The kids remained standing as Sister Mary told the children that President Kennedy had been shot and killed. “The boy felt a warm stream down his leg as his socks became wet and a puddle formed between his feet.” … November 2017/Penn Magazine/67

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