The Polish town of Wadowice has banned ads for alcohol, contraceptives, lingerie and tampons during Pope Benedict’s visit. “[T]he faithful may feel hurt if programming devoted to the Pope’s visit is interrupted by frivolous ads,” says an exec at the state-run TV network.

A Salon e-mailer opines: “Apparently the female reproductive cycle and its consequent necessities are somehow evil and offensive to the Church hierarchy?”

Salon adds: “I mean, did the Virgin Mary not menstruate? Or is it just that the church prefers pads?”

Truthdig wonders: Maybe they’re still reeling from “The Da Vinci Code’s” fantasy that Mary Magdalene had Jesus’ child.


Rome is the home of ice cream and for generations, citizens and tourists alike have forsaken dessert in a restaurant for the simple pleasure of sitting outside with a takeaway cone.

The last Pope, John Paul II, used to have tubs of his favourite flavour, marron glace, delivered to his summer residence.

But if his successor, Pope Benedict XVI, wants to see how Polish ice cream compares during a trip there this week, he is likely to be disappointed.


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