This blog has had great sport dinging on occasional Strib columnist and unhinged person Susan Lenfestey.
It's almost that funny.
Vacation, in her world, is a bitter, wrenching experience:
I'm sitting on my duff on Mackinac Island and fussing about the heat. With no newspaper, no TV and a gummy-slow Internet, I'm in a news vacuum.Let's see: the President, the leader of the free world, in wartime, marinades in information, almost 24/7, even when he's on vacation, which frequently gets interrupted by events. This, compared to a ditzy old biddy who fusses about Republicans and writes fevered screeds.
I now understand how George W. Bush got to be the way he is. If you don't read the news, and only occasionally step off the shady porch to slash brush, you can pretty much avoid knowing that the world is blowing up around you. You get the most peripheral take on things, little glimpses of trouble spots, which prompt you to mutter inane things about who oughta stop doin' what to whom. Just the other day I said to my husband, "Whassup with Israel?" That's about as deep as it gets when your daily news intake has the nutritional value of a marshmallow.
Yep. Perfect comparison.
Back home in Minneapolis I start the day with the media equivalent of bran and hardtack. My teeth grind, my stomach knots and the little needle on my rage meter pings over to the red zone.Frothing by 8AM.
Susan Lenfestey must be a riot at parties.
Up here I take my coffee looking out at Lake Huron, a sweep of clear, fresh water that shimmers over the distant horizon like the world's biggest infinity pool, which in a way it is. After the religious wars and the oil wars -- if there is an after -- they say it'll be the water wars, which puts those of us situated in the middle of the five Great Lakes sort of in the catbird seat. Or in a war zone.There are surveys that show that conservatives are, as a broad rule, happier people that liberals. It sounds like Lenfestey might skew the results.
Not only is she in a full-time froth, what with her, personally, being the focal point of all the world's trouble - but it appears to piss her off that other people can block out the purported impending doom:
These sailors come ashore with an all-too-familiar swagger of privilege, claiming dehydration and sexual deprivation from their weekend ordeal on the open water. Unlike their less lucky counterparts stuck in, say, the 115-degree heat of Iraq, these guys have free Bacardi rum and a whole slew of sturdy Michigan Girls Gone Wild, bare midriffs and breasts billowing like spinnakers, to slake their various thirsts."DON'T YOU PEOPLE SEE? THERE'S GOING TO BE A WATER WAR! RIGHT HERE! QUIT HAVING FUN! IF YOU'RE NOT OUTRAGED, YOU'RE AN IDIOT!"
"AND KNOCK OFF ALL THAT DRINKING AND SEX! CONCENTRATE ON POLITICS!"
As I write I can hear them partying on the lawn of the hotel below. The sky blazes blue overhead, the soft breeze smells of balsam trees. The band is playing an old Edgar Winter rock song called "Free Ride." Well, that's over.Wow - what do you supposed the odds were?
Let me flip on the radio and see if I can count on such convenient irony. (flips switch).
Wow, whaddya know - "Mother" by Pink Floyd! As if on cue!
Even those of us still coasting on the top know that the free ride our dunderhead president promised us is now -- and in reality always was -- a free fall, and at this point no one knows how to stop it. I'd rather be left home alone with Macaulay Culkin than with our bring-it-on kid in the White House. Note to Mom and Dad or any grown-up out there: Please come home.Have I mentioned that Susan Lenfestey is one of the "non-partisan" patricians who signed the "Happy to Bend Over For a Big Budget" proclamation?
Have no fear...no, strike that. Have nothing but fear, if you're in Susan Lenfestey's frothing little world:
Eventually the anesthesia of oblivion wears off and you feel the pain, even as the crazed surgeons continue to slice up the world and there's nothing you can do to stop them. Vacation is over.It is impossible to even satirize this kind of thing.
Have no fear: She's coming home to save the world, in her own, frothing, spittle-flecked, hate-choked manner:
I'll go home and dip my puny oar into the political waters of the midterm elections and pull toward that little sandbar of hope, though some days it feels like bailing a lake with a thimble.Who wants to sit in a boat with Susan Lenfestey?
But if those with oars pull together and those with thimbles keep bailing, maybe we can still get there.
Anyone?Posted by Mitch at July 27, 2006 07:24 AM | TrackBack