Filling in the Gaps

The network tv season has just about reached its conclusion.  Summer re-run season is upon us and in a meaningful way it no longer matters at all.  I am effectively down to one show (“The Middle”) that I truthfully consider entertaining.  It’s been about two years since “The Big Bang Theory” was funny.  “Last Man Standing” which used to add a tiny amount of right wing commentary in with the family sit-com formula had a comatose season that telegraphed the news that this season would be its last.  “Kevin Can Wait” is a pale shadow of how funny “King of Queens” sometimes was and nothing else on the tube even mildly interests me.  So, I’ve finally had to face it.  There is no reason to watch network television anymore.  Cable is slightly more promising.  There are a few series that I hear are entertaining.  I’ve been watching earlier seasons of Silicon Valley and it is funny but hardly worth paying for HBO.  I can probably stream whatever I want on Amazon or Netflix or Hulu or blah, blah, blah.  So, I can probably also join the ranks of those who have cut the cable and use the internet as their data and entertainment umbilicus.  But for me that’s weird.

The baby boomers were raised by the boob tube.  It seemed like it was always on.  It was the background music to our lives.  ABC, NBC and CBS were our babysitters, our teachers, our neighbors and in a strange way our friends.  We sort of depended on them to tell us what cars were cool, what other kids were wearing and what music we should listen to.  Now I guess that has been replaced by the ubiquitous cell phone link to you-tube and facebook and whatever is trending on Twitter.  Well, I don’t do cell phone, but I guess the internet on my laptop is the equivalent.  So now I amuse myself with that.  But it’s not the same.  Sure, I’ve replaced the network news with a handful of blogs and news aggregators.  And I search for reviews of movies and cable shows and books on the right-wing blogs and for the most part I can find what I want but something is missing.

In the 1990s I went to work and could talk to coworkers and find out about shows like Seinfeld and Home Improvement and it felt like we all shared a similar perspective on the humor or the take on current events.  The writers of the shows reflected the common culture and the sensibilities of the country at large.  That’s completely gone.  We are fractured and alienated from each other to such an extent that it almost isn’t meaningful to talk about one country as existing anymore.  I guess we are at least two peoples.  And unfortunately, the group I’m in doesn’t have a media.  We have the rudiments of one.  But it’s much harder to make it work effectively and it doesn’t feel as seamless and comforting as the old one was.

So, this post is just me thinking out loud and reflecting on where we are.  I can remember one day during the Iraq War driving home from work and listening to NPR on the car radio.  The slanted and dishonest reporting was so unbearable that I vowed never to listen to another show of any kind on Public Radio or television.  And just saying it felt good.  But it was the beginning of a long process to identify alternate sources and structures to patronize and support.  I buy my fiction from sources that do not force a leftist narrative on their authors.  I never click on a news article from the NY Times or the Washington Post or Politico or any of the other leftist mouthpieces.  I never watch a Colbert or a Jon Stewart routine.  I don’t go to or rent a movie with a leftist slant or agenda.  I support politicians who vote for the things I want.  I sent a substantial check to Donald Trump during his campaign.  I only support charities and organizations that reflect my values.  I fill in the gaps around the places where the cancer had to be excised.

And I write this blog.  I give my opinions and I spread the word on any people or sites that I think are right wing and useful.  And I try to entertain and give encouragement.

So where are we?  At the beginning.  Is it good enough? No, but it’s a beginning.

Trump vs The F.B.I.

Scene 1 (White House, Oval Office)

President Trump (PT) – Look Jeff, I’m glad that Comey is finally out of there but you’ve got to clean out that nest of bozos over there right away.  I’ve got to have the FBI doing some real work.  Between the narcotraficantes and the street gangs Americans are losing faith in the government.

Jeff Sessions (JS) – Mr. President, we’re firing and reorganizing as quickly as we can but there are just so many Obama plants in the FBI that it’s like trying to swat a cloud of mosquitoes.  You’re still gonna get bit.

PT – That bad?  How many useful agents are there?

JS – I’d say about 40%.  And there’s just no easy way to segregate the good from the bad effectively enough to control the problems.  When we restrict the classified clearance of the known bad actors they jump on someone else’s computer and steal info off the database when they get a chance.  And how can you stop that?  It’s hard to tell one guy in a cheap suit and a bad haircut from another.

PT – Never disparage a guy in a cheap suit and a bad haircut.  He could be the next Commander in Chief.

JS – No offense intended sir.

PT – And none perceived.

JS – Exactly.

PT – Well, Jeff, something’s gotta give.  I’ll discuss this with my highest counsel and get back to you.

JS – Ivanka?

PT – No, Schmoopy.

Scene 2 (White House, West Wing)

PT – Hello Schmoopy.

Melania Trump (MT) – Hello Schmoopy.  Why do you have on the sad face?

PT – Because the FBI is full of bozos.

MT – Schmoopy, what is the bozos?

PT – A bozo is a clown.

MT – But the bozos should make you smile and laugh.  Do they wear the funny face and the big shoes?

PT – No they wear the cheap suit and the bad haircut.

MT – Well that is the problem.  I never laugh at the cheap suit and the bad haircut.  It is not funny but very sad.  Why do you not make them wear the bozo suit?

PT – Because no one would put up with that.  He’d quit first.

MT – Would that be so bad.

PT – No Schmoopy.  That would be kinda good.  Thanks.

MT – That reminds me, I’ve got to bring in the tailor and the barber for you.  We must look our best Schmoopy.


Scene 3 (FBI Headquarters – Jeff Sessions addressing the Executive Leadership of the FBI divisions)

JS – President Trump has formulated a strategy to streamline and optimize the reorganization of the Bureau.  Effective immediately the organization will be divided into two groupings.  The new division will start out essentially empty.  It will contain a new director whom I will select and an administrative staff. This division will be augmented by any of the existing personnel of the Bureau who can be reliably vetted as effective agents.  This new division will be designated the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Agent Smith (AG) – Mr. Sessions, won’t the other division still be called the FBI.

JS – Yes, it will in fact be called the FBI.  This older grouping will start out with all the personnel of the current Bureau.  It will be up to the rank and file to facilitate their transfer to the new organization.  They can do this by telling us where the “bodies are buried.”

AG – Why exactly would we want to leave our present positions?  We have a pretty good organization and we like the way things are done now.

JS – Well, there are some changes coming down the pike.  For one we’re changing the dress code.  Here is a visual on the standard attire that will be expected starting Monday.  Of course, some variation will be accommodated for gender and ethnic considerations but essentially this is your new look.

AG – Sir, that’s a photo of Bozo the Clown.

JS – Yes, the beloved Icon of the 1960s and ‘70s.  You all will don the face paint, big red squeaky nose, orange hair tufts, size twenty shoes and colorful puffy jumpsuit of Bozo.  This will incentivize you to consider helping us clean out the rat’s nest of Obama bitter clingers and fifth columnists.  Also, it will allow us to easily monitor your proximity around sensitive information and systems.  Standard operating procedure will be to check for clowns before leaving your work station unattended even for a second.  And on your official government identification badge will be emblazoned your new department name FBI – Feckless Bozos of Imbecility.

AG – You paint a vivid picture Mr. Sessions.

JS – We want to make this decision as clear as we possibly can.  You will stay in your present structure under the new arrangement.  You will be assigned duties that include Saturday Morning Children’s Television and outreach to pediatric hospital wards.  Classes in juggling and seltzer squirting marksmanship will be mandatory.  This will go on until either:

  • You show us you can work for the country instead of against it.
  • We find out you were involved in the leaks.
  • You resign.

AG – Go to hell Sessions.

JS – Ah, ah ah!  That’s a Bozo no-no!

The Shrieking Calliope of Rage

I think Steampunk exists because the steam powered devices of the 19th century were so impressive to the senses.  A steam locomotive fairly writhed with barely latent explosive potential.  Even the safety relief valves that prevented the whole thing from rupturing into a multi-ton shrapnel device assaulted your ears with a screeching shriek that hardly spoke to any sane person’s mind of safety or relief.  This impressiveness transfers well to the written page.  A good writer can weave a word image of the sights and sounds and the feel of the vibrations and even the taste and smell of steam coming off one of these mechanical monsters.  Off the top of my head, I can think of two examples from imaginative works.  The first is the Calliope and Carousel from Bradbury’s “Something Wicked This Way Comes.”  The other is in the final scene in the boiler room from King’s “The Shining.”  In both cases the steam powered engine is almost an entity in itself.  A manic energy emanates from it and powers the action of the scene and drives the protagonist to attempt to disarm the menace of his shrieking foe.

So, where am I going with this? Oh come on, you know me by now.  The hissing, sputtering, shrieking machine that threatens at any minute to explode from apoplectic rage is the MSM and its faithful audience.  In the last week or so we have had any number of the usual suspects screaming, crying, cussing and threatening disaster over every and any action of the Administration.  In some ways it is impressive.  To keep up a hissy fit this long is no mean feat.  Some of these individuals are not young and so you’d think the risk of stroke is not negligible.  I’d say the most noteworthy instances to list were Stephen Colbert and Maxine Waters.  Colbert had a meltdown over Trump disrespecting a CBS reporter named Dickerson.  Colbert went into a rant against Trump and used some extremely derogatory sexual comments that even partisans of the left found offensive.  Following that a few days later, he extemporized to his studio audience on the breaking news of FBI Director Comey’s firing and was chagrined when the crowd cheered the news.  He claimed it was the result of a pro-Trump audience.  More likely, his constant attacks on Comey for harming Hillary’s election chances temporarily confused the audience into forgetting that we’ve always been at war with Eastasia.  I’m sure he straightened them out on that right away.

Waters took the Comey firing as the one hundredth excuse, to once again, call for the immediate impeachment of Donald Trump. When asked if she would have supported Hillary Clinton firing Comey she said she definitely would.  Wow.

In the olden days B.T. (before Trump), a republican president or Congress would quail and jibber under the endless assault of the outrage machine. A Bush or a McCain would waffle and kowtow to accusations of racism or sexism or just plain ism.  They were a hapless bunch and the Media and the dems knew it.  That’s why they are still hitting this play so hard.  It always yousta work.

We may be in a golden period. A place in time where the libs are still using tactics that no longer work but before they figure out that they actually do real harm to their case.  If this is the case then the trolling of Trump may actually be a very effective way of turning the public against the public positions of the left.  Someone like Colbert blowing a fuse on screen might have a truly revelatory effect if at the same time an unapologetic President is managing to get things done in Washington at the same time.

As the inimitable Vox Day has noted SJWs always double down. If that is the case, then there may come a point when even the somnambulistic public wakes up to the fact that the Left has become a shrieking steam engine whose relief valve has been overwhelmed in furtherance of doubling down.  And with any luck the Left will blow the whole thing sky high or run it right into a brick wall.  If so I can make one last steam analogy reference, “God He stole the handle and the train won’t stop going, no way to slow down.”

Tolkien: A Very, Very Long Story – Part 1 – On the Screen vs. the Mind’s Eye

Okay, The Lord of the Rings, the big enchilada. Tolkien wrote about a half a million words about his war of the ring. His son Christopher has made a cottage industry of publishing every scrap of draft paper that his father ever scribbled and analyzing them as if they were papyrus palimpsests of the lost plays of Sophocles. In the last sixty plus years an unending stream of analysis both professional and personal has been generated about these books. Everything that could be said has been said and about a million times. So, what possible justification is there for me to add to the ocean?

Well, it’s my damn blog and I want to. So, without further ado…

I read the Lord of the Rings when I was about twelve. I was highly impressed. Obviously as I matured my opinion of the story was based on an evolving baseline of experience with fiction and personal experience of the world around me. Over the years my personal preferences among the various characters and scenes have altered somewhat. But my overall opinion of the work is still very high and very enthusiastic.
Over the course of the time I have been a fan of the Lord of the Rings, Hollywood has from time to time attempted to produce motion picture versions of it. Some of these were animated films. One was drawing superimposed over live action frames of film (Ralph Bakshi’s film). Recently a sophisticated live action and CGI combination was produced by Peter Jackson and managed to win the Academy Award for best picture. The relationship between these films and the text is the subject of this post.
I will state categorically that none of the film versions of the Lord of the Rings before Peter Jackson’s version ever succeeded (except in very small sections) in capturing the feeling of the book. The inability to draw the viewer into the reality of the story was always too strong. But in the Jackson version it succeeded.

Okay, here come the qualifiers. Do not confuse the above statement with an unconditional endorsement of every aspect of the movie. There are any number of things about the movie that I object to (some extremely strenuously). For instance, Denethor is rendered as a terrible man. I do not think that reflects Tolkien’s intent or description. Also, some aspects of the treatment of Frodo and Sam’s friendship is oddly portrayed and off-putting. The super human abilities of Legolas seem exaggerated and some of the silly treatment of Gimli are annoying. A hundred little and not so little problems exist.

Getting that out of the way I will say that Jackson’s movies bring the Lord of the Rings alive. In a certain sense these films will give Tolkien’s work a chance to become part of the mythology of the whole human race. Because although millions of people have read the books, billions of people will see the movies. Not every viewer will be impacted deeply by the story but enough of the books comes across in the films that the films will act as an amplifier of the story in the digital realm we now inhabit. So, on balance the Jackson films are a net positive for the Tolkien lovers of the world.

I’ll cut this first Tolkien post short here. After all this is an endless pursuit. Best not to drone on too much. But I’ll end with my opinion on the best scene in the Jackson films. And I’ll specify I’m talking about the extended versions. The best scene is the Ride of the Rohirrim at the Battle of Minas Tirith. It was stirring and well done. Feel free to leave your opinion on the best scene in the comments.

What Does the Comey Firing Mean?

If you look at the various news aggregation sites, you’ll find any number of articles that explain how Trump’s firing of Comey will either:

  1. Cause the end of democracy in America, or
  2. Trigger Trump’s impeachment and guillotining

So, where does this leave us normal people? Well, as I usually exclaim in my magisterial fashion, “Damned if I know.”  Does Comey and Obama’s people have some kind of deep game that they are trying to play that will hobble or destroy Trump and his administration?  Maybe?  Is Trump counterattacking with the full force of the executive branch’s formidable resources?  Could be?  Or is this just Trump clearing the decks to get his own guys in there to move on to new business?  Sure, why not?

For even a staunch supporter of the “Troller-in-Chief”, such as myself, it sometimes seems like this administration punishes its supporters as much as its enemies. Honestly, on a daily basis I reach the giddy heights of schadenfreude with the release of the latest Hillary rant, followed by a plunge into the stygian depths of terror when a sophomoric presidential tweet erupts onto the media scene.  It’s exhausting.

But I’m in this thing for the long haul and Trump’s is the star that I’ve hitched my wagon to. I’m gonna give him as much slack as I have and let him get it done.  Firing Comey seems like exactly the opposite play from a JEB! or Romney move.  This tells me it’s probably smart (or at least brave).  Some people are saying that Trump’s motive is to get a team into the FBI to start pursuing Hillary and/or the leakers from Obama’s people.  These sound like high risk moves.  And that makes me think high risk/high reward.  It’s entirely possible we have someone with guts in the White House.  Good.

It should be interesting to see how this plays out over the next few days. Right now Schumer is calling for a special prosecutor.  Blumenthal is accusing the administration of treason.  I’m guessing if the democrats weren’t all atheists there would be charges of heresy.  What would be indicative of Trump effectiveness would be if the administration can start getting ahead of the democrats in the news cycle and produce indictments of someone on the other side.  I’d love to see some democrat operative testifying under immunity and naming names.  Can you just imagine the howls of pain if some of the actual villains were unmasked and the sausage making that went on in the White House last year came to light?  Who knows?  Maybe even Saint Barack might appear with his halo slipping down a little if enough prosecutorial pressure was applied to the right Obama flunky.  Admittedly that’s just my dream version of how the post-Obama landscape could play out.  More likely it would just tend to silence the press if they thought that pursuing the leaks would go away if they gave Trump some good press.  So let’s see who’s winning and who’s losing.  We should know soon.

Bathtub Nitroglycerine and Perpetual Motion Machines

Families are a great invention.  They allow us to remember stuff from long ago and be young again.  Case in point, I have a descendant who is in middle school.  He is forever describing to me machines he has invented that turn kinetic energy and wind and sunlight into potential energy stored in batteries and flywheels and allowing him to perpetually power the imaginary kingdom he rules with an iron hand.  On a fairly frequent interval I remind him of the three laws of thermodynamics and the scourge of entropy.  He laughs it off as fake news.  Apparently, his generation has formulated the fourth law, magic.

All of these flights of fancy reminded me of my own early technological history.  As a youngster, I had a fascination with chemistry.  I quickly graduated from the hobbyist set up with a few bottles of sodium bisulfate, test tubes and an alcohol lamp to a professional ground glass distillation set up, temperature controlled electric heating, reagent bottles full of mineral acids and even some formidable organic solvents.  I searched in arcane book stores for the organic chemistry recipes and set-ups that allowed for practical synthesis of various compounds that in my young mind were interesting.  At one point, I obtained an old organic chemistry text that was part of a medical school curriculum from the 1920s.  It included a number of compounds that interested me including nitroglycerine and trinitrotoluene.  I went as far as obtaining all the reagents, equipment and vessels I would need to perform the reaction.  On the day I had set for producing the first batch I was walking down to the supermarket to buy the fifty pounds of ice I needed to cool the reaction when it occurred to me that this might just possibly be a “bad idea.”  You see I remembered that nitroglycerine was a material that wasn’t just dangerous during production but remained sensitive to heat and vibration at all times.  Not owning a reinforced concrete bunker, I realized that after I manufactured the “soup” I had no place to keep it.  Well, no place that would survive a detonation.  Now you might think that this kind of rational evaluation would have steered me clear of all pyrotechnic and explosive materials.  You would be wrong.  The extent of my caution was to shift over to something less unstable but equally exothermic.  I started working with thermite.  In these post 9-11 days I imagine my experiments would probably fall under the heading of possible terror activity.  Back then they were the stuff of Fourth of July celebratory hijinks.  But even these relatively tame and successful forays into amateur pyrotechnics now give me pause.  Just precisely how stupid is a teenage boy when it comes to unsafe activities.  The answer comes back loud and clear.  Infinitely stupid.  I can remember what back then seemed to me to be failsafe precautions.  In hindsight what I see was ignorance and just plain dumb luck.  And that really frightens me.

Needless to say, these memories inform my present situation.  It occurs to me that the adults around when I was hatching my munitions program thought that my forays into chemistry were altogether benign and to be encouraged.  Hmmm.  Who knows what evil lurks in the hearts of men?  Not just the Shadow.  Any man who was ever a fourteen year-old boy knows too.

I intend to monitor my young Archimedes’ progress with an eye for safety.  I have gotten him some books on electricity and machines that stress safety and standard components.  I know he has an interest in robotics.  And I know he enjoys BattleBots so I will keep an eye out for any indication that his creations will include cutting surfaces or kinetic devices such as circular saw blades or pneumatic hammers.  If my cautionary tale rings any bells in your own case, remember, the apple does not fall far from the tree.

TCM Goes Full Nitwit

Like many right-wing folk I was raised on the movies that were made in the Golden Age of Hollywood.  Many of the movies made in the ‘30s and ‘40s possess a charm and appeal completely lacking in later decades.  They reflect (or maybe echo) qualities of a culture and people that are appealing even to the decadent descendants of that world living in the tattered remains of today.

That’s why even though Robert Osborne, the late host of Turner Classic Movies, was an obvious member of the Hollywood leftist fraternity it was still worth my while to tune in to TCM and watch the films.  For the most part I didn’t even mind listening to him discuss the movies either directly to the tv audience or as a dialog with some other Hollywood boob.  As annoying as it was to hear Osborne discussing aspects of the film with the likes of Alec Baldwin or Sally Field it was still bearable for the most part.  Osborne rarely went full tilt commie during these discussions so the tooth gritting quotient was still acceptable.

As Osborne aged, management must have decided that they needed a succession plan.  To this end they installed an auxiliary host in the person of Ben Mankiewicz.  Ben is the grandson of a Hollywood screenwriter and a strident leftist who appeared alongside the “Young Turks” during the 2016 presidential election results while they were melting down on camera.  Occasionally his moonbattery has been on display but like Osborne he was usually able to keep his affliction under control.

Well, last month Osborne died.  I guess Mankiewicz is nominally the host now.  But several new hosts have been trotted out.  Diversity, of course, is being touted in the choice of genders and races on display for these new hosts and based on the complete lack of name or face recognition associated with them I’m guessing they are essentially unknowns and therefore extremely economical employees for TCM to utilize.  Well, what can you do?  It’s not as if Osborne was any big star.  I think his claim to fame was that he knew some of the golden age actresses personally and was able to get them to appear on the show for interviews.  These new hosts blather on from their points of view but they’re not that much worse than the old act.

But now we’re reaching a new level of abuse.  Tonight, the presentation of “The Bad and the Beautiful” was co-hosted by Alec Baldwin and David Letterman.  Now this is a level of toxic television viewing that I would compare with having to listen to Sauron chatting with Saruman about the latest advances in orc breeding.  We have reached the limit.  I assume a meltdown is imminent.  It will probably occur during a John Wayne western and will involve words like imperialism, cultural appropriation, patriarchy and racial genocide.  At that point, I’ll either have to cancel TCM or shove my foot through the LED screen.

To combat the sense of loss I feel at having to cede yet another familiar cultural facet to the leftist demolition brigade I have decided to add classic movie reviews as a regular part of this blog.  In the past I have endeavored to mix in a few sci-fi and western movies into my normal “current events” posts.  Going forward I propose to increase them and expand the selection to golden age and equivalent quality later films that I think will be of interest to my readers (and you know who you are!).

So farewell Robert Osborne, you were a mostly benign lefty host of TCM.  You are sorely missed now that we know what’s coming next.

You Mean the Sky is Not Falling?

Andrew Klavan has been making me laugh and think since I found him at PJ Media about a decade ago.  His “Klavan on the Culture” videos were hilarious and brilliant skewering of leftist thought and action that brightened up many a depressing day of the Bush and Obama presidencies.  He continues his video presence on the Daily Wire but he put up an article at PJ Media that was linked on Real Clear Politics     (  ) that I think addressed the endless negativity that not only defines the MSM but also infects right wing publications on a daily basis.  Klavan is far from a Trump cheerleader.  He’s a smart guy who sees the contradictions we are living with.  The alleged intellectual leaders of the republican party were complicit with the progressives in handing over the government (all three branches) to radicals who have basically dismantled our world and reassembled it into a grotesque parody that assaults our moral and physical senses with its depravity.  The spectacle of men masquerading as women in every corner of the public space is only the latest symptom of the systemic infection that has been allowed to overrun the normal outline of our world.  It’s a case of life outdoing art and so much so that a Fellini movie would now be considered a taming down of the real world.

So, the thesis of his article is that Trump and the Congress should be cut a little slack.  They have lately been making headway in reining in the excesses of the former administration and have even made some progress toward improving the situation.  One point that I thought was important, was that Trump took advantage of a rule (the Congressional Review Act) that allows any government regulation less than 60 days old to be deleted with almost no effort at all.  He set about the job of negating all the poison pill regulations that Obama enacted after finding out Trump had won the election.  Klavan noted that the New York Times (“a former newspaper” as he always adds) decried this Trump action, in a tear drenched article, as a part of the demolition of the Obama legacy.  This panic on the left hardly jibes with the non-stop lamentations that the right wing has been ululating for the last week or so.  So, what is going on then?  Who is right?

Isn’t it lucky for all of you that I’m here in all of my Olympian objectivity and divine wisdom to pronounce on who is right and who is wrong and the generic whichness of what?

Of course it is.

Well they’re both right (of course).  The right wing faithful are rightly aggrieved at the current state of affairs and the slowness of improvement.  With the Presidency, the Congress and the Supreme Court all nominally under right wing majority you would expect the guillotine working overtime piling up the severed heads of progressive malefactors at the base of Capitol Hill.  You would imagine Nancy Pelosi, Barack Obama, Harry Reid, Hillary Clinton and Barney Frank would be in the docket trying to plead for clemency while a special prosecutor was loading up a list of high crimes and misdemeanors long enough to reach the orbit of Mars.  Rats like Stephen Colbert, Lena Dunham and Al Gore would be reduced to pushing shopping carts around on the streets of Los Angeles hoping to score a cheese rind or grapefruit peel from the dumpster behind the local Trader Joe’s.

And the republicans in government are right to remember how the American people punished them for shutting down the government when Clinton rejected their budget balancing work in the 1990s.  That left a mark that they never forgot.  Careers were ended and democrats took seats in red states.  It’s pretty much a truism that people get the government that they deserve.

So I’m going to throw the tie to Trump on this one.  He’s making a dent.  And one other thing Klavan notes in his article, Trump’s continual trolling of the left is a gift that keeps on giving.  It enrages them and provokes them to ever higher heights of moonbattery (e.g. Colbert’s recent ravings).  These people have reached a frothing state that’s bound to take a toll on their public image.  Whereas Trump’s rating seems to be slightly rising.

So in conclusion, the sky is not falling and I’m not even close to being tired of winning.

Wherefore Art Thou Shmoe-meo?

The Last 1360 Days of the Trump Presidency


Lycra Spandexy (LS) – Oh Shmoe-meo, Shmoe-meo, wherefore art thou Shmoe-meo?

Morning Shmoe (MS) – I’m right here at the teleprompter and it’s 37 seconds past the quarter hour my dear Lycra.

LS – Oh, Shmoe-meo renounce thy father’s name, for I refuse to become Lycra Spandexy-Browfurrowed.  A girl can only endure so much.  You’re a modern metrosexual man.  Take Spandexy as your last name. Shmoe Spandexy has a kind of alliterative magic to it.

MS – Sure baby, a rose by any other name would blah, blah, blah.  Just as long as we tie the knot before Chris Cashews is on the show again.  He’s getting that tingle up his leg again and I don’t think either one of us is safe alone with him during commercial breaks.

LS – Wow, that’s grim.  Okay I am sold oh Shmoe-meo.  I’ll make the announcement on-air and the joyous huzzahs will resound around the set.

MS – Uh, yeah sure.  And three, two, one!

LS – And we’re back.  During the break, Morning Shmoe agreed to become my husband and equal partner for life.

MS – You said it toots.

LS – And since we’re both delirious with joy, we wanted our audience to be the first to know.

MS – And since this is the network that never stops pushing, we’re going to turn today’s show into a forum devoted to giving us the best advice for our life together.  Lycra, who do we have scheduled for the panel?

LS – First up is our very own Snarkful Sadclown.  And who better than an androgynous lesbian to help me pick out my wedding dress?

Snarkful Sadclown (SS) – Well, Lycra, if you really intend to degrade your body by becoming a walking biological function and a chattel handmaiden for the patriarchy, the least I can do is make sure you arrive in comfortable loafers and a sensible pantsuit from the Hillary Collection.

LS – But Mommy and Daddy said I’d look like a princess!

SS – This ain’t your Mommy’s network Princess.  And I’d recommend a number two buzzcut for the hairstyle.  That’s right, this is real, you aren’t dreaming, this your life.

LS – Why do you keep saying that?

SS – You-Tube said it gets clicks.

MS – Next up is noted gender studies authority and NY Times bestselling author of, “Painful Changes, Wardrobe Choices,” Dave-Sue Haddgonadds.  Good morning Dr. Haddgonadds.  Am I pronouncing that correctly?

Dave-Sue Haddgonadds (DSH) – The dees are silent, you silly man.

MS – My apologies.  Dr., what can I learn from you to make my marriage more fulfilling?

DSH – First of all, Shmoe, be aware that even contemplating yet another marriage between white, heterosexual, cis-gendered people is a crime against all LGBTQ and people of color.  You are transgressing against the gorgeous mosaic that is the American life of today.  It is vibrant, it is diverse and it will not be flouted by your retrogressive, hate-filled choices.

LS – Yes but we are white, heterosexual, cis-gendered people.

DSH – That’s no excuse.  Nowadays, options in transgender hormone therapy and transformative surgery allow any number of alternative body choices.  For instance, Shmoe, I envision you as a five foot three inch tall black woman with a penchant for shall we say alimentary amorous pursuits.

MS – Five foot three?

DSH – Yes Dr. Farber is a virtuoso with the bone saw.

MS – I’m not sure I’m comfortable with the idea of gender reassignment surgery.

DSH – No problem.  There’s no pressure whatsoever.  Our motto is “If you like your genitalia you can keep your genitalia.”

MS – Somehow, that’s less than totally reassuring.

DSH – And you, Lycra, would be just a stunning creature at 6’ 3’’with a Douglas Fairbanks Jr. mustache and a Heidelberg scar.

LS – But I want to be a princess!

DSH – Fine.  We’ll compromise You can be bi-sexual.  See I’m willing to meet you half way.

MS – Dr., I hope during the break we can find some common ground on our vision of married life but first let me introduce our next panelist.  He’s the greatest living authority on pre-nuptial agreements Tad Litigious.  Good morning Counselor, am I pronouncing that correctly?

Tad Litigious (TL) – No, Shmoe, the vee is silent.

MS – But there is no vee.

TL – That’s why it’s silent.

MS – Okay, Tad, what do I need to know about the legal aspects of marriage.

TL – Well, first off Shmoe, you’re gonna need an ironclad pre-nup before you sign up for this rodeo.

MS – Why?  Lycra and I are modern people with deep empathy for each other and compatible views on life and social responsibility.  I respect her as a strong independent woman and I embrace her life choices both personally and professionally.

TL – Sure you do Poindexter.  But listen to Uncle Tad for a minute and I’ll set you straight on a couple of items.  So, you two are on the same wavelength and believe in all the same touchy-feely talking points.  Super-duper.  But let’s look about five years down the road.  By then little blondie over there is just a skosh less perky here and there and your network will be replacing her with the twinkie du jure.  Now based on what I’ve heard from the two of you, Little Miss Muffet over there isn’t going to go into the baby raising business for you.  She’s gonna shop her act around the networks and she’ll end up parked on the Home Shopping Network with the rest of the over the hill bimbos and probably putting down about a pint of gin every a.m. before curtain.  My guess is you’re the kind of old boy who’ll find the twinkie du jure sort of interesting and with one thing following another, I’m guessing you’ll be calling me up and handing me a seven-figure retainer to help you switch around Mrs. Browfurroweds.  Now, if you don’t have a pre-nup in place, she’ll get 85% of your stuff.  If you have one she’ll get 55%.  So, it’s your call.  I get paid either way.

MS – Well Tad, that all seems very unlikely, (sotto voce) call me later.

LS – Hey I heard that!

MS – Well that’s all the time we have, but I just want all our guests to know that we valued their advice and with any luck at all we will have a full and happy life as man and wife.  Or as something and something and for some reasonable length of time.  But for me and Lycra…

LS – Up yours Shmoe!

MS – Here’s to a happy and progressive today.