Belfast Telegraph

Pope's assistant Georg stands head and shoulders above the rest

By Nuala McKeeever

In all the coverage of the Pope’s visit, the words “sex apppeal” and “glamour” aren’t ones you’d expect to find.

Step up Georg Ganswein — or Gorgeous Georg as he’s been called in the Italian Press — the Pope’s personal secretary. He’s the tall, good-looking one, helping Benedict with his clothes, his Popemobile and, probably, his policy statements.

The Italian and now the world’s media are going a bit “Thornbirds” over him — because he’s handsome. However, buried many paragraphs down in any discussion of him, is a mention of the fact that he was a professor of canon law at a university closely affiliated to the conservative Catholic order Opus Dei.

So, he may be a right winger but hey, let’s not worry about that cos we’ve got photos and he looks damn sexy in a pair of tennis shorts!

I read all this and tut-tutted at journalists focusing on such irrelevant nonsense. “What is it with sensible people that they lose their critical faculties the minute a man or woman with a pleasing arrangement of physical attributes hoves into view?” I sighed, superiorly. “Thank God, I’m not like that!”

Now, I’m quite tall for my age. If I’m going out of an evening to work at a function and I put on modest high heels, I often end up being able to see over the heads of 90% of the men in the company. Great for catching a passing waiter-with-free-drink-on-a-tray’s eye, but not so great if you want to feel petite and feminine.

So when, as happened this week, I meet a man much taller than I am, it’s a novelty. If, as happened this week, he happens to be very good looking as well as very tall, that’s a very nice novelty.

But you wouldn’t catch me gazing into a man’s eyes like a puppy just cos he’s a looker. I do have a brain. I mean, unless the guy’s also funny and smart and interesting, there’d be nothing to hold my attention would there?

So, how to explain the fact that I stood for ages talking to a tall good-looking rather dull man with whom I had absolutely nothing in common? The only explanation seems to be that while my brain was muttering, “God, this guy would give drying paint a run for its money”, my body was screaming, “Yes! Yes! Yes! Whatever you want! The answer’s yes! Take me now!”

“So what’s yer problem?” you ask.

Well, it’s just that I don’t know how to respond to my response. I mean, is it a cause for concern, a sign that I’m a hormonally-led moron, in which case I probably need to give myself a proverbial slap while having a cold shower, or ... is it a cause for celebration?

Is it a good thing that for once I simply let myself enjoy an animal urge to procreate with the fittest looking male specimen around?

But if that’s the case, where will it lead? Will I wake up one day to discover my brain’s been totally colonised by my groin? If I meet Gorgeous Georg will I hear myself confessing, “Bless me Father for I would like to sin?” Will he be wearing his tennis shorts and if so will he keep the light on in the confession box?

Maybe we should just be grateful Hitler was an ugly shorta**e, otherwise we might all be speaking German now.

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