Pope John Paul II's visit to the United States has inspired a play--what Shaw would have called a comedietta .
Andrew Delaplaine's "A Matter of State" is a satirical one-act in which advance men from the White House and the Vatican work out a delicate issue--whether the Pope or the Reagans will be given the suite with the bathroom at the Villa Vizcaya in Miami, where they are to meet (and did on Thursday).
Delaplaine was inspired by a report in Miami Magazine that such negotiations were actually held this summer, but his play (in which the Pope himself doesn't appear) is entirely imagined.
"It's a gentle satire, but I hope not too gentle," Delaplaine said over the phone Friday from Miami. "It's about the incredible trivialization and hoopla that surround these visits. The Pope may talk about important issues when he comes here, but nobody else does.