Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Very Sneaky, Mr. Senator

(I'm listening to the President right now. Do you hear the crickets in the background?)

Watching the news and hearing people discuss the events of the last week does have my head spinning a bit. I’m trying to keep my focus on a couple weeks from now, when I’ll get a little breather while being cradled in the arms of the music I’m mad about.

My sister and I also realized that I will be at her house for the Vice Presidential debate. This is perfection. She, her husband, and I watching together in real time as opposed to the cell phone updates that might have ensued. She also makes the best apple pie on the planet, which will make listening to Palin’s grating, nasal voice go down a lot easier. (Again, to you merry men who think she’s sexy. Think of the audio that would go with. WAKE UP.)

But this morning I woke up and realized something very important. I am so distracted by my disapproval of Palin that I’m not paying attention to what is actually being said by our presidential candidates. I’m not thinking about, or working toward an intelligent discussion of where my candidate stands because I’m so goddamn terrified that if McCain is elected and chokes on a chicken bone that Palin will drag us all through her End Times Fantasy and get us all killed.

Now, that ain’t right. And I can’t help but wonder if this isn’t in fact McCain’s true intent in selecting such a miserably unqualified running mate. And by unqualified, I mean, as in the town this woman ran is smaller than the town where I grew up, Martins Ferry, Ohio. And folks, it don’t take much to run Martins Ferry.

So it occurs to me that by throwing so much of the focus ON to Palin, McCain has taken the heat OFF of himself AND Obama. And now he wants to postpone the debate to fix the financial crisis? Weenie. Work on the Hill until 6 p.m., do the debate, and then go back to the Hill to finish your job. That’s how it should be done. There's no reason you can't keep doing your job and interview for the next one at the same time. People do it every day. Have your scheduler call me, I'll explain how it works.
On my way to work I decided, with IBMA looming ahead, I needed to give myself a break from the chatter in my head and the news blasts, and listen to some real old fashioned bluegrass. So I pulled up some Bill Monroe. Early bluegrass is basically old time music on stimulants. And, it reminds me of what happens when you try to do things too fast. Kind of like this bailout package Herr Pretzledent wants us to welcome with open arms. This one is called, appropriately, Fire on the Hill, er, I mean, Mountain. Learning a tune like this might require a "slow downer" program, something Congress might do well to put into service about now, too, before they do something hasty.
And before you do something hasty, make sure you do your homework. Don't get too caught up in the Palin love fest or the attention-grabbing grandstanding McCain is using to buy time and make it look like he cares after 26 years of doing nothing. To both candidates, if you have to be in Mississippi at 8, and then back in DC to finish the job at 1 a.m., well, that's the way it goes. You think being President of the United States is a 40 hour a week job?
There is a fire on the mountain. Run, boys, run.


At September 26, 2008 8:16 AM, Blogger DrDon said...

Alright Mando, the fact is that Palin does have a certain sex appeal. You need to get over that. We men don't want to hear her talk anyway. And no one is saying they want to marry her. The fact is that among women in politics, she doesn't exactly have a lot of competition in the looks department.

I could say the same thing about Clinton and Obama. Neither of these guys is Brad Pitt or George Clooney but some women swoon over Obama and women definitely swooned over Clinton. So give us guys a break. You women aren't immune to erroneous evaluations of sexiness of politicians. It seems to me that just having a politician under the age of 50 makes him/her somewhat attractive.

At September 26, 2008 12:37 PM, Blogger Mando Mama said...

Well you know, Doc, if you want to talk about "sexy," there was that whole Kennedy allure that had the nation, and frankly a good part of Europe, in its grasp. There is nothing wrong with that at all. It was damn near magical. But the difference between what is illustrated by guys' lust for a half-bit politician like Palin and the world's affection for Clinton and almost any Kennedy who has held any office anywhere is pretty obvious. The Kennedys and Clinton are all smart as hell. Clinton's a Fulbright scholar. Now if Palin were really smart, or smart at all, and not a mean, horrible person (not that some of the Kennedys weren't that too, certainly they have that gene from Joe) I might feel totally different. In fact I think it would be great for the nation's entire morale. But she is the wrong package in almost every way.

At September 27, 2008 6:47 PM, Blogger DrDon said...

Well Mando, much of the time we agree but not on this topic. Kennedy may have been smart but like most of the Kennedy's, he was a bastard. He repeatedly cheated on his wife and the entire clan used their political and financial power to place themselves above the law. Smart or not, as far as being a good person goes, I don't believe he was any better than Palin.

With respect to Clinton, it's funny but during his candidacy when stories were being written about his popularity among women, I don't seem to recall many of the women mentioning him being a Fulbright Scholar. I guarantee you that the majority of women in America didn't and still don't know that about him. He got one of his biggest popularity bumps when he appeared on television in sunglasses playing his saxophone. Brilliant? Yes, but it didn't have a lot to do with being president.

I guess what gets me is that women like to act as though they are so much different or better than men. I think that's complete baloney. The reason men don't care about Sarah Palin's intelligence is because it has nothing to do with her appearance. Many Hollywood starlets and pop singers are total dim bulbs but that doesn't mean they can't be sexy. Again, we're not talking about spending a lifetime with the woman. We're simply talking about whether she has any characteristics, mainly physical, that would make us think about taking her to bed. And frankly, while I can't stand much about Sarah Palin, she looks better than a lot of the 40-something mother of 5 housewives I've seen in my life.

And again, women are no different. How many male celebrities or athletes do women drool over and find "sexy?" There will never be a female actor on TV who gets a nickname like "McDreamy." But there are millions of women who fantasize over Patrick Dempsey. Is it because he's a genius? LeBron James could go out to the Warehouse District tonight and go home with 10 women, all of whom would gladly open up their legs for him. Is that because he's curing cancer?

I'm not trying to slam on women here. My point is that there's nothing wrong with finding people sexy. It may not be someone you like. I personally think Patrick Dempsey looks like a horse who's had a stroke but that's just me. I don't condemn women who find him sexy because he doesn't measure up to my standards. I couldn't care less about him. Sexy is in the eye of the beholder and as a guy I'm tired of women always trying to make us feel guilty for being attracted to anyone they don't like (usually meaning anyone except them).

The truth of it is that a lot of women hate Sarah Palin because she's getting attention they aren't getting. They feel they're more capable, batter looking, etc. But this is typical women cattiness. You guys love each other but you hate each other. You spend so much time tearing down your own gender and then wonder why you guys can't get anywhere. Women talk about the anorexic stereotype but then women owned and operated fashion magazines continue to promulgate that very stereotype. Women are constantly dieting yet hate other women who are thin.

It's fine to find a woman sexy because she has a naughty librarian look, or big boobs, or a tight butt, or a flat tummy. And it's fine for a women to like a guy because he's tall, or has broad shoulders, or a nice ass, or drives a Porsche. Whatever turns you on. Just be honest about it. If you like the guy because he's powerful or rich, don't say it's because he's intelligent or has a great sense of humor. We'd all like to find someone to marry who is smart, funny, successful, kind, and who we find physically attractive. That goes without saying. But people also just have old brain, biological sexual desire. Who we find attractive is personal to us and doesn't always make sense but I think the world would be an easier place to live in if women just admitted that they do this too.

At September 28, 2008 9:19 AM, Blogger Mando Mama said...

All that is true enough, Doc. The fact is that my blog is an expression of what I see through my lens. Through my lens, Cal Ripken Jr., is intoxicating. So is Richard Dawkins. So is Kevin Spacey. So is Harrison Ford. So is Tim Robbins (and for that matter, Susan Sarandon, although, you know, not my type). Yes, like millions of American women, so are George Clooney and Johnny Depp (who is, in fact, brilliant). So are you, so is Boring, so are a lot of ordinary men who have a certain spark or passion about something.

Through that same lens, Tom Cruise is a dog. I found him attractive until he went off the deep end of Scientology. So is John Edwards. I found the news about his cheating pretty upsetting, but the fact of the matter is, I bet we couldn't find many US Presidents who didn't do that, sadly enough.

You are right about John Kennedy. What Jackie chose to live with, and how she chose to live with it, is something I find hard to understand. Men of power and influence sometimes find it hard to resist what presents itself. But it's a choice, and I never said I agree with it.

Not everyone works the same. I can no more fall for a guy just because he has great hair and baby blue eyes than I can fall for another species.

I don't hate Sarah Palin because some men think she's sexy. There are a lot of women I think are sexy, too. In fact I don't hate her at all. But I hate the fact that any person with her decision-making tree has the potential to become the leader of the free world. Through my lens, she is an ugly person, she has hate in her heart that I find indefensible, and at the very least, a big turnoff. So regardless of whether it makes sense, the fact that so many men find her to be a "MILF" disturbs me in a different, rather mystifying, and ultimately personal way. If Susan Sarandon were on his ticket, even I'd consider voting for McCain.

At September 28, 2008 6:34 PM, Blogger DrDon said...

Well, you're really making two points here Mando. First is whether one sees Palin as qualified for the office she's running for. The second is a commentary not on Palin but on men who find her attractive. While you are correct that you blog, like all of ours, is your lens on these topics, I think that when we put these thoughts out there we invite both praise and criticism. As you say, there's something that disturbs you about men who find Sarah to be a MILF. My comments were thoughts about why that is. In other words, why is that disturbing to you? You admit that everyone had their own criteria for attraction so why does it bother you that men find Palin attractive?

And it's not just you. There seems to be this vitriol coming from women about Palin that I don't quite understand. I have my thoughts about it, some of which I expressed here, but this women seems to bring something out in women. When Hillary was running, there were women who didn't like her either but it didn't seem so intensely personal. You'll probably say that Hillary was smarter than Palin so people who disliked her maybe just disagreed with her ideas. But why don't people just leave it at that with Palin and not also criticize that men find her attractive? To me that piece seems irrelevant.

Something about Sarah Palin touches a different nerve with women. The comments are hear about her often seem simply catty (while couched in rhetoric about her intellect and experience). I think she's a dunce too. But whether I find her attractive or any other person does really has nothing to do with anything. But it does seem to mean something to women and watching the cattiness and one-upsmanship of the women at the bars last night, it seems there's something else going on than simply job qualifications.

At September 28, 2008 6:37 PM, Blogger DrDon said...

Geez, sorry for all the typos. This wireless keyboard isn't always easy to use.

At September 30, 2008 7:37 AM, Blogger Mando Mama said...

Hey Don,
Time flies. At this point, more folks are finally starting to realize The Empress Has No Clothes and that she'd make a lousy Veep. Hallelujia. Of course, meanwhile, Rome is burning at a pretty good clip. Tomorrow we may not even be allowed to do this.

To your point, though, I don't know what the offense is that has so many women worked up. I think for me personally it's just my inability to appreciate that men don't need anything but, you know, what they "need" in a woman. I think if we didn't know anything at all about her I could rationalize it, but at this point I just can't get past it. But I do get that men don't care, that there is a constant primal drum banging in their heads that often defies any rational override. I suppose I've concluded that the reason men think Sarah Palin is hot is probably the same reason a reasonably attractive, energetic, friendly, intellectually capable single mother like me is not hooked up with somebody (well that and the single mother part, but, that's someone else's loss, not mine). Put another way, I guess I'm too much work for the average American male.

Still, I got to thinking, and realized I haven't been entirely fair to you in this discussion. I can cite one or two examples of nice looking fellas for example at the gym. I know at least one is a dad. These two guys don't look anything alike, but each turned my head in a different way. Still, once I got past that part, my brain kicks in almost immediately with the process of elimination..."what if they're Republicans?" "What if they like money and power?" "What if I'm too old?" And on and on. But, I guess I can't say that I didn't take a first look because I found something about them attractive.


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