The editors of scene have given me a unique opportunity. After all, a column like this allows a writer to raise important issues as part of a civilized discourse encouraged by the American journalistic tradition. Or just to make pronouncements from on high, to whine about some mundane issue, or to poke fun at people who, well, don’t have columns. Sometimes this results in blanket hatred and death threats — as I’ve learned during my journalistic tenure — but it’s important to remain committed to the public’s right to know the truth, or at least to know the version of the “truth” that’s bandying about in my head.
And with that, here’s this week’s misinformed pronouncement — John Kerry is a goon.
Now at first glance, that statement may appear harsh, petty, misguided and shallow. You know what? It is all these things. But it needs to be said — if Mr. Kerry would like to be elected president, he needs to stop being such a goon.
How does one go about defining “goon?” Well, all behavior that causes any normal human being to shake his head in disbelief constitutes goonishness. This can run the gamut from poorly crafted statements to poorly selected clothing ensembles to poorly executed cosmetic procedures to general physical awkwardness. Now, the fact that I’m evaluating goonishness is a bit like me throwing stones at a glass house. But hey, I should thus be an expert on the matter. Oh, and the sole sources for intel on a potential goon are the gossip columns and hearsay. The mainstream media generally misses out on the biggest tip-offs for goonishness, deeming them as irrelevant to the news cycle.
Granted, the incumbent president certainly has had his gaffes — what with “strategery” and “nookuler” as staples of his lexicon, but he has a knack for connecting with the American public that characterizes only the best politicos.
But Mr. Kerry continually outdoes his own goonishness. Let’s start with the cosmetic surgery. Now, I’m turning to the popular rumor mill as my “infallible” source, and it tells me that face-paralyzing Botox bacteria appear to be floating throughout Kerry’s forehead. And recently, his skin seems to have taken on an orange hue. Sunless tanning and Botox are never good ways to ingratiate yourself to redneck swing voters. I may be the pastiest kid around, but I’m convinced that the medieval preference for pale skin will be making a comeback. And if Mr. Kerry actually likes NASCAR, as he claims, he should just assimilate and go for the farmer’s tan.
Now fashion. Both candidates seem to dress well. But the ever-trustworthy rumor mill also tells me the Mr. Kerry spent $20,000 on custom ties from New England designer Vineyard Vines. High-quality products, to be sure, but I can think of a few better uses for that sum of cash. Most of them involve big-screen plasma televisions and several trips to White Castle. Or maybe we could use it as the first of three trillion installments in paying down the national debt. Hey, maybe we can consolidate some of that debt on some low-interest credit cards — I get e-mails about this stuff every day. Why does no one ask me for the answers?
And on a more personal note, I’m upset with this Bob Shrum fellow, a top advisor to Mr. Kerry. He’s stealing my thunder. Now when I Google myself while procrastinating, this other Mr. Shrum is the first link to pop up. Let me tell you, if I were the other Bob Shrum, I would concentrate on two things — making sure that the phrase “trees are cathedrals of nature” is never uttered again and teaching Mr. Kerry how to throw and catch a football. The race between the two candidates to see who can fall off their bike the most is neck-and-neck, but President Bush has the upper hand in the “not throwing like a complete maladroit” department.
Irrelevant criticisms, you may say? Perhaps. But hey, what’s a modern presidential election without considering juicy factoids that have little or no bearing on actual political matters? I’m happy to do what I can to help make you, the reader, an informed voter, with information as fair and balanced as FOX News. All in a day’s work.
Robby Schrum knows that there are actually four, not seven, Horsemen of the Apocalypse. All hate mail should be sent using sidewalk chalk.