Living Out Loud: : Playground Politics

Taking a look at the prime-time players

It is already the last week in July and I have no summer vacation plans in sight. Bummer. Fortunately for me, it's Election Year, and I've been able to entertain myself by sending e-mails to a friend, offering intelligent and introspective meanderings on our current political scene, not to mention observations on our astounding list of bona-fide, A-1 quality, top-shelf candidates. Nudge, nudge.

To name only a few of the prime-time players we have been graced to observe, we have Evil Eye Nader and his chubby friend Mike, ready to foil anybody's plan, wringing their hands and throwing their heads back while laughing their all-knowing evil laugh.

There's Cheney, who, I'm sure, spends his days dribbling coffee down his chin and onto the front of his shirt. We've got Bush, with his team of personnel still trying to convince the world that he graduated from kindergarten. Kerry is brandishing the sword and trying hard not to chop everyone's head off, because you know he can. Then there's the really funny-looking Kucinich guy who shows up every now and then, looking like a Harry Potter House Elf.

Who needs issues with personalities like these?

Saving John Edwards, the rest of the group could be found in a West Wing reject bin.

Damn, Edwards is hot, too. And he's on top of things. A real Superman.

My friend Jeff, not missing a beat, turns my e-mail around and responds, "Edwards had my vote six months ago when I caught the glimpse of his English major wife. Where was I when she was storming through a southern lit program?"

Geez, here we go, I thought. It's time to compare and analyze the presidential wifely booty. It was a forgivable comment, though. Jeff is also a former English major — they have some kind of weird bond — and he's been on the road this summer. But, being the word master that he is, he had to crack, and "women are dying to get a closer look at either McCain or Cheney when the big announcement (for veep) comes. Ha."

Now, where the hell did that come from? That was just low. He might be on the road, and his head filled with mush, but Christ, that comment just made me crawl.

I'm so sure that women all over America are creaming in their pants right this very moment over McCain and Cheney. This nails it: The nitty-gritty; the down and dirty; the salt of the earth. We say it's all about issues and politics, but get real. What we really want are personalities, intrigue, Survivor players, talk show hosts. We want a GQ presidency with a full GQ entourage. What we don't want are McCains and Cheneys.

We stretched it in 2000 when Dubya was, um, "elected." Little Bush not being much to look at — or Mom and Pop, for that matter — we honed in on Laura and gushed over how darn "cute" she was. But now, with the Edwards factor, we've got it coming out our friggin' ears.

Jeff asks where he was during Elizabeth's southern lit class? I'm sure he was sitting in the back of the room with the other guys, picking his ... fingernails, when Liz stormed through. Then he must have dropped his pencils on the floor. Probably to sneak a closer look. She is vice presidential booty for sure.

But on the other hand, let's be real. I know if John Edwards strolled into one of my classes, it would be a "holy shit" moment. I can feel my face go flush and nose turn pink right now. Jesus.

I'd sink into my desk chair and bury my face in a book, peer around it and make some kind of weird choking noise. That not being enough to annihilate my already battered ego, I'd end up having to leave in a coughing fit. I had more bruises on my hips and shoulders from bumping into desk chairs, walls and doorframes when I was around that type; you know, those people with that Colgate Smile — the one you swear actually tings and sparkles when they grin.

The point being, GQ has nothing on that couple. I don't know about you, but I could definitely spend the next four years looking at Sen. Edwards grinning back at me from the tube.

Let's see, what are our options for comparison anyway? McCain still has that idiot scar across his head. As for Major League Cheney, enough has been said. Presidentially speaking, Kerry is no hotty either, and Bush gives the impression of a spoiled 10-year-old who lost a soccer game because the ref was "unfair." Go ahead, say it out loud like a 10-year-old: "That's Un Fa-ir." Not attractive. In an age of West Wing populism, these things must be considered.

Wake up and piss on the daisies! We need attractive people in the White House, by God. We're Americans and deserve to be represented by good looking people. Or at least by people who can rock and roll.

Look at Bill; he played the sax. That was cool. Tipper, who played in a girl band, almost won the election for Al. Except he was such a nerd that people wondered why someone who was as cool and good-looking as Tipper during her college days married such a geek. Then they got suspicious. She was probably pissed, too.

But now we've got it: The double-whammy. Brains and beauty. Just think about it; the international implications are limitless. It's what we want. In fact, it's what the world wants. Even the terrorists won't know what hit them. How could they not want to be friends with us now? They'd get a chance to play with John Edwards and his knock-out wife. Now there's a couple who probably knew how to trade lunch snacks.

Here's the skinny: if Bush were re-elected, we'd have the spoiled 10-year-old for another four years. Listen, I have a 10 year-old. I know that other 10-year-olds like to beat up kids like that. No wonder we're getting the global snot whacked out of us.

Issues be damned. I say it's time to kick Georgie off the playground and invite John-John to play.

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