Last week, in an effort to explain third quarter sales that were down slightly from sales reported in the third quarter of 2014, the restaurant Cosi pointed the finger at an unlikely figure: the Pope!

Cosi takes its chances with hell: Blames Pope's visit for bad sales, which is a way worse excuse than the weather.

— Dave Benoit (@DaveCBenoit) October 7, 2015

On October 7, Cosi announced that while sales were down in the third quarter for both company-owned and franchise stores, these figures were "distorted" by certain non-recurring events. "Business interruptions resulting from the pope's visit on Sept. 22–26, 2015, negatively impacted 30 percent of our company-owned restaurants," Cosi said. The company added that the impact of the papal visit for

the 4 Weeks Ended September 28, 2015, and the 13 Weeks Ended September 28, 2015, on comparable restaurant sales of Company-owned locations has been estimated to be -0.9% and -0.3%, respectively.

According to CNBC, although Cosi has over 100 restaurants operating in 15 states, it "has an outsize presence in the New York, Philadelphia and D.C. areas, where Pope Francis visited in September."

I'm not at all sure I understand how the Pope's visit hurt sales. As questioned in the tweet below,

Cosi blames the Pope's visit for weak sales, but didn't people in the crowds need places to eat? $COSI

— Jessica Wohl (@jessicawohl) October 7, 2015

I mean, look at these crowds to see the Pope in D.C.! Nobody wanted a cosi® club?