Reading While Eating for Mar. 12: The Vatican’s Next Top Cardinal

In today's must-read links for your lunch break: Everything you need to know about the Papal election as Conclave begins.

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Cardinals attend the Pro Eligendo Romano Pontifice Mass at St Peter's Basilica, before they enter the conclave to decide who the next pope will be, on March 12. Red is very in this season.

Conclave Begins Today. As usual, white smoke will indicate that a new pope has been elected, while black smoke means that everyone can stop staring at the Vatican chimney for a few hours. A decision is expected by week’s end. (The New York Times)

Betting Odds on the Next Pope. Archbishop Angelo Scola of Italy, once considered the favorite, has fallen behind Cardinal Peter Turkson of Ghana. Oh, and if you’re in the U.S., this infographic is for entertainment purposes only—betting on Benedict’s successor is illegal because the process is considered an election. (Popular Science)

Popeology 101: How to Interpret the Sistine Chapel Results. As usual, if Dennis Rodman is elected, the apocalypse is near and you should begin stocking up on bottled water and canned goods. (

Darth Vader Spotted in Australia. In Canberra, to be precise. The Vatican has yet to release a statement regarding the significance of the sighting, though movie critics are expected to say it’s an omen that J.J. Abrams’ Star Wars will further tarnish the memory of the original trilogy. (The Daily What)

Eight Beautiful Bookstores in Residential Spaces. This may seem somewhat impractical, but it’s certainly better that the inverse. Because earthquakes, right? (Flavorwire)

Bloomberg Enlists Faith Leaders in Fight for Gun Control. No word yet on whether the faith leaders will be doubling down and supporting the New York City mayor’s stalled effort to ban plus-sized sodas. (BuzzFeed)

A Scandal at the Bolshoi Ballet. David Remnick takes an in-depth look at saga surrounding the acid attack that left the dance company’s director disfigured. Longreads has this one pegged at nearly 45 minutes, so let’s hope you bought a second sandwich. (The New Yorker)

Fan-Made Movie Trailers. Dear Video Experts, can someone please make one of these that mashes up the Fast and Furious franchise with the Die Hard franchise? Yours truly, The Internet. (mental_floss)