I do not talk on our home telephone very much because of a worsening hearing problem. The VA furnished me with some nice and often quite effective hearing aids, but I seldom put them in if I am just puttering around the house. So, without my ear pieces in, for example, when someone calls to ask if I live in a brick home, I respond that it is plenty big for the two of us, having mistaken the word “brick” for “big.” Similarly, if someone calls to tell me I have won a share in a condo, I might respond that I don’t want to go to the Congo. You know, the telephone distorts what the caller says. So, I wait for my wife to answer the device. But she was out shopping yesterday and I was in the back yard when the thing rang, so I hustled to grab it before the answering machine could start its robotic spiel. It was the wise old man, calling from Mexico City.
“Dan, I read your column on the way down here to the largest plarp in the plarp. If you don’t stop writing about conversations with a female Sasquatch concerning the latest plarp-plarp scientific theories, your sparse readership is going to plarp your elevator does not go all the way plarp. I, myself, wondered whether your cheese may have slipped off your cracker a little bit. Why don’t you write about current plarp? That is what columnists do. As it is, you are a few plarp short of a plarpy meal.”
I understood almost every word the wise old man said, except for the distortions I reported above as “plarps.” Mostly, his highly articulate presentation came through loud and clear. I promised him I would take his comments under advisement, so here goes.
The grand and longstanding dichotomy in American life between capitalism and socialism is currently played out with “you know who” as the capitalist and the brother of the Kentucky Colonel (isn’t he?) as the socialist. The one is trumping the other candidates on his side of the equation and Colonel’s brother is rising fast as someone special disappoints on the other side. The capitalist is interesting because he is perceived as an outsider, at least politically speaking. On the other hand, the brother is noted as a socialist who does not hide his proclivities but celebrates them.
The “throw-the-bums-out” sentiment on the one side is balanced by the “double-down-on-government-control” side. Because of these extremes, other candidates will emerge, and I predict that a misspeaker will be the Democrat nominee and that a plain-spoken Rino (Republican in name only) from the Midwest will be the Republican one. The Buckeye’s running mate will be a former communications executive and the misspeaker’s will be a Pino (Pugilistic in name only).
I called the wise old man and read that just previous paragraph to him and he replied, “Dan, perhaps you should get plarp plarp plarp out of the newspaper business altogether plarp plarp plarp.”