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July 1998

Creative Commons License
This work by Chumworth is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.
July 21, 1998.
  Web Posted at: 1:15 pm UTC
The Bill and Monica Mess

The other day whilst I was puttering around the apartment watering the goldfish plants and cleaning out the cat pan, it all of sudden hit me. It came upon me with such suddenness that I had to put down the watering can and just let it wash over me. I sank back in the couch and lit a smoke.

What had come to me was the realization of just what it was about this whole Clinton-Lewinsky mess that bothered me the most.

What had bothered me the most about this whole Clinton-Lewinsky mess wasn’t the fact that the 50 year old leader of the free world was fooling around with a Gen-X intern in the oval office. Or the fact that, in the process, he redefed, in my mind at least, the meaning of the term ‘baby boomer’. Oh sure, it was immoral, unsavory, and, given the two participants involved, gross. And, yeah, can there be any reasonable doubt that old Bill lied about it left and right, on camera and off, and pressured, either directly or indirectly, young Monica into lying about it also?

These were all good reasons to be bothered by the whole Clinton-Lewinsky mess, and yet I knew that these things didn’t bother me. Why? Because, despite these and other presidential antics, the value of my mutual fund holdings continues to go up and up. I think that I speak for many of my fellow Americans when I say that, so long as the stock market keeps on going on, Mr Bill can pretty do whatever and whoever wherever he wants, for all I care. Just don’t mess with my equity.

No sir, what I realized on this day was what it really was that had bothered me the most about this whole Clinton-Lewinsky mess was the god-awful, white-bread, unoriginal, and most definitely boring manner in which Willie tried to cover his rear. Here’s a guy who grew up in the 1960′s, decade of the freaks; a guy who couldn’t run for reelection in two years even if he wanted to and the best approach he and his celebrated spin-miesters could come up with is the fresh haircut, nice suit, look-me-in-the-eye-and-ask-for-forgiveness-during-prime-time approach?

How boring! If you ask me, that’s far worse than any crime he may have committed.

Come on, Bill! We pay you more than $200,000 a year, give you free room, board, bodily protection, transportation, and, most importantly, TV air-time, and a very weak ‘I regret it’ is the best you can do?! It’s insulting! Entertain us! If this whole sordid mess has shown us one thing about you, it’s that, deep down, despite that haircut, you’re really a freak. Now that you’re at the end of your political run and there’s no more elections to be won, come on out and admit it. Revel in it. Have some fun with it. Let’s go!

Yeah, I know, you’re worried about your place in history. Sure, it’d be nice to be remembered as a great leader, like a Franklin Roosevelt or an Abraham Lincoln. But, let’s face it, there’s no world war you can win in the next two years and there ain’t no more slaves to free or rebels to whomp. So, it’s time to get funky and officially reinvent your public persona. And you know what? There’s more than a few freaks that’ve remained close to our hearts. Closer to most hearts than you can ever hope to be, given your present trajectory. And the reason we love em? They weren’t afraid to be different and let it all hang out in public.

Not convinced? Let’s take a quick look at a few famous freaks who made the right choice:

(1) Vincent Van Gogh – impressionist painter. Went nuts and lopped off ear. The public loves a tortured soul. Paintings worth millions.

(2) Elizabeth Taylor – cute little darling of ‘National Velvet’ over-ate, over-drugged, and over-married. We ate it up.

(3) Timothy Leary – respected Harvard psychology professor takes acid and becomes one of the leading freaks of the 20th century. Dying days are captured live on the world wide web.

(4) John Lennon – lovable, clean cut, suit wearing, mop top transforms self into long-haired radical hippie giving press conferences in bed. No one was in that tree.

(5) David Bowie – one-time Davy Jones goes from Ziggy Stardust to thin white duke to earthling. Sleeps with Mick Jagger. Becomes an internet service provider.

Van Gogh, Liz, Leary, Lennon, Bowie. Freaks, one and all. And we love every one of em.

You could join that group Mr President. What’ll it be? Jimmy Carter or Major Tom? Waste no more of my time with press conferences or apologies. Unless you’re giving them from a bed in Amsterdam.

-Chum    [link | comment]

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