There’s a poll over in the upper left column for you — You! Many of whom I’ve never met! What trust! — to vote for your favorite name for my sprawling Maine estate. Write-in votes will be accepted in the comments section.
I’ve scooped the Weekly World News! Michaelgenrich.com has discovered a shameful chapter in political strategist James Carville’s past: The Secret Brother He Never Loved!
Animals and crime! Animals and crime! A combination on this island that’s as natural as cousin and cousin.
Today’s Police Beat entry was reported from my hometown. No one should have to live in such close proximity to such dastardly evil.
SOUTHWEST HARBOR — A concerned citizen reported an injured duck on Feb. 13. Police notified the Acadia Wildlife Foundation, who agreed to pick up the bird and tend to it.
On the plus side, NBC has contacted me to develop a new television series in their wildly overextended franchise family: Law & Order: MDI. The pilot episode will involve a wig that has been removed from a lobster trap, and the injured duck who sold it to a group of wandering cattle. I don’t want to jinx it, but I think I’ve convinced Angela Lansbury to get on board.
Holy cow, and I thought I had a problem with mixed metaphors:
“We’ll say we’ve received the ball and are studying the ball and will continue to study the ball and that we’ll pass the ball to experts because we’ve never quite seen a ball like this before.”
— a U.N. Security Council diplomat speaking on condition of anonymity about North Korea’s failure to comply with its disarmament obligations, quoted in an MSNBC report.
From James Taranto’s Best of the Web Today
Busy day at work today, and the boy’s been keeping us up the last two nights. Also, I didn’t buy a newspaper today. This all means that I have literally nothing to say today.
I do, however, have a lovely image of political strategist James Carville for you to enjoy. I want this photo on a coffee mug or a thong, so if you’re shopping for my birthday, why not go to Cafe Press and make it happen?
I have seen Carville twice, both times in Alexandria, Virginia. One time he was jogging down Union Street, near the Potomac River, shuffling along the road like a guy with chammies glued to the soles of his shoes who’s trying to polish the asphalt surface. The second time, O Glorious Day, we were both selecting jellies and/or jams from the same shelf at Trader Joe’s. The man was right next to me, and I couldn’t think of a thing to say. When I recounted this experience to a guy I know, he told me I should have said this:
“Y’know, try as I might, I just can’t picture you f***ing Mary Matalin.”
James, if you’re reading this — I promise you I’ve never tried to picture that. But I will give you fifty dollars if you’ll rip off Tucker Carlson’s bowtie and eat it on the next edition of Crossfire.
Dan suggested that my next From The Grave entry revive a letter I wrote to a particularly horrid former neighbor about five years ago. I’m quite happy to oblige:
Dear Obnoxiously Evil Ex-Upstairs-Neighbor (not her real name):
You may have noticed that we no longer reside in the first floor unit of the building in which you live. You may be confused and frightened by this sudden change, much as a hamster becomes disoriented when his exercise wheel is relocated from one corner of his cage to another.
We have moved, and we will not be returning. This means that the Tammy Wynette songs that you play at riot-control levels will no longer reach our ears. When you yell at your children to “get in [their] fucking room,” we will no longer hear you and wonder if your parenting technique is superior to ours.
Please don’t misunderstand — our memories of you will not be completely negative. Your frequently changing hair color was our own private aurora borealis. We will fondly remember watching you flick cigarette butts from your patio and judging you on style, grouping, and estimated minutes subtracted from your life expectancy.
As a token of the appreciation we have for the unique experience of having lived in your vicinity, please find attached to this letter a piece of furniture that we want you to have. It is a free-standing closet, with one door conveniently ripped off to fit in with your overall decorating motif. You will find it useful for many things — we would suggest it as a possible residential solution following your next inevitable eviction.
I missed last week’s promised Police Beat. I won’t forget tomorrow’s edition.
As a weakly offered attempt at apology, please enjoy these four Maine-related entries from The Smoking Gun:
I took the two ambulatory boys skating over the long weekend. I skated along with the younger boy while his older brother took his new hockey stick into battle in a little pickup game at the far end of the ice. After a few minutes of watching Zach’s adorable shuffling method of skating, I struck up a conversation with a guy skating alongside his four-year-old son. When I told him we’d just had the fourth child, he asked me, “So how’s it feel switching from man-to-man to zone coverage?”
It was a funny line, but it was also a perfect analogy for child-raising: you’re always playing defense. You need to guard against accidents, mean dogs, pedophiles, and Democrats, of course. But the kids are always on the attack too: sneaking ice cream, “remodeling” the house, placing roller skates and other high-comedy-potential toys on the stairs. So a parent must channel Bill Belichick to create a constantly-changing, anticipatory defense against the threats to your children and the threats your children pose to you.
But in the end, it doesn’t matter what defense you play, because Kobe’s coming to town every night.
(P.S. Yes, I mixed my football and basketball metaphors in one post. If you plan on being a regular reader of this site, I’d advise you to get used to such grammatical heresy.)
More complaining about the cold weather today. Yes, it’s repetitive and boring, like a televised bowling match. But I stand by the writing advice of “write what you know,” and boy do I know cold weather. We’ve lived together so long that we might be considered married by common law.
Anyway, today’s severe weather alert from the National Weather Service warned of dangerous wind chills for yet another night. But this bulletin threw a curveball:
THOSE PLANNING TO VENTURE OUTDOORS SHOULD DRESS IN LAYERS…
Venture? Venture? We’re talking about going outside, not trekking through the jungles of Zaire. When did going outside become a life-or-death decision?
COASTAL HANCOCK ME-COASTAL WASHINGTON ME- INCLUDING THE CITIES OF...MACHIAS...ELLSWORTH...EASTPORT... CHERRYFIELD...BLUE HILL AND BAR HARBOR 320 PM EST THU FEB 13 2003 ...WIND CHILL ADVISORY TONIGHT THROUGH FRIDAY NIGHT FOR WIND CHILL TEMPERATURES OF 20 BELOW TO 30 BELOW... BITTER COLD TEMPERATURES IN COMBINATION WITH BRISK WINDS WILL PRODUCE VERY COLD WIND CHILL TEMPERATURES TONIGHT THROUGH FRIDAY NIGHT. THESE WIND CHILL VALUES COULD PRODUCE FROSTBITE IN A SHORT PERIOD OF TIME ON UNCOVERED SKIN. IF YOU ARE PLANNING TO BE OUTDOORS...DRESS VERY WARMLY MAKING SURE TO PROTECT EXPOSED SKIN AND MINIMIZED EXPOSURE TO THE WIND.