Celestial Lands The Religious Crossroads of Politics, Power, and Theology

Staycation and Mr. Bean

This week is Candidating Week for the congregation that I am serving as an Interim Minister.  Now, by all indications Candidating Week has gone well, and the congregation will vote tomorrow on whether to call Jeff Liebmann as their new settled minister.  What will be with that will be… and that is not what I am writing about.

As an Interim Minister, Candidating Week is a time when I can have no contact with the congregation, so that the Candidate for the settled ministry can fill the role of the Minister in congregational life, and do so without immediate comparisons to the Interim.  They can critique the Interim, or even say how what they would bring would be different without worrying that the Interim is in the room.  They can show the congregation what their joint ministry would be like, by “being” the minister for that week.

The joy of this is that it means that the Interim Minister gets a week away from the congregation.  Now, many of you are aware that most interim contracts include four weeks of vacation and four weeks of study-leave.  Unfortunately, in my case much of those 8 weeks is taken up with military service requirements, which are even higher stress and more energy intensive than the time I spend with the congregation.  So, Candidating Week is a blessing in that I need to remain in town in case the Candidate needs to talk to me about something, and the congregation has someone else to minister with them.

At first, I had great plans for this week.  I planned to do all kinds of online military training that has been waiting on my attention.  I planned on going through all our “stuff” to decide what is going to California and what is not.  I planned on completing some military evaluation forms.  I planned on meeting with the movers (which I did) and getting an estimate.  I planned on doing some delayed maintenance on my car.  I planned on taking a few trips to visit some of the Michigan tourist sites before we leave.  I planned on many many things… few of which actually happened.

Now, I have an excuse… my cat, Athena Warrior Princess, became ill.  She ended up needing surgery this week to remove a stone from her bladder, and I needed to be around to make sure she was okay… that she did not do any jumping that might rip her stitches and that she received her antibiotics on the right schedule.  (She’s recovering well, by the way).

So, having this excuse, I moved away from most of my great plans for this week, and instead spent the week watching episodes of “Mr. Bean”.

Yes, Mr. Bean… the greatest character of physical comedy of all time.

My love for Mr. Bean (and indeed most of Rowan Atkinson’s work) is always somewhat controversial.  I have been a fan all the way back to his performance in “Never Say Never Again”, as well as “The Thin Blue Line” and “Johnny English”… but he will always be the indomitable Mr. Bean to me.  Though I have seen most of the episodes before, watching them in order over a period of a week had me smiling and belly laughing… and rejuvenating in a way I had not in awhile.

My favorite has been the scene in a Christmas episode where Mr. Bean is playing with a nativity scene by having a Dalek defend baby Jesus from an attacking dinosaur.  Alien robot/cyborg from outer space defends Baby Jesus from a rampaging T-Rex… priceless… and plausible in a 6,000 year old earth…

When others use the word “Staycation”, they mean to stay at home, but visit all of the tourist sites in your area… to go all of the places that tourists go.  For me, it means to stay at home, in my apartment, and do little of socially redeeming value.  It means to sleep late, to get up and watch episodes of Mr. Bean, to sit in the floor and pet my cat, to read some senseless Science Fiction, to breathe deeply and be just a short while without responsibilities.  As it is coming to a close, this week of my staycation, I am realizing how vital it is for me to have such times.

My life runs along at a fairly rapid pace… and there are times I just have to stop and watch Mr. Bean.

And maybe, when no one is looking… do the Mr. Bean dance…

Yours in faith,

Rev. David


4 Thoughts on “Staycation and Mr. Bean

  1. I cannot believe it but I have not seen this episode! Thank you, thank you for posting it! My favorite is when he goes to church and sings Al-le-lu……u….ia.

  2. Ah, Mr. Bean! I think my favorite of Rowan Atkinson’s work has to be his role as a priest-in-training in ‘Four Weddings and a Funeral.’ Each time he misspeaks during a wedding I laugh out loud!

  3. The Congregation voted unanimously to call and ordain Jeff Liebmann as their new settled minister…

    Athena Warrior Princess continues to heal, but is quite annoyed at how itchy her hair growing back in is…

    And my Staycation is over, as of tomorrow morning…


  4. Pingback: Judgment Day, sex in the news, and other UU blogging « uuworld.org : The Interdependent Web

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