July 27, 2008

"Even for Sarkozy the American, who loves everything in our culture... it was a wild gush over a new Washington crush."

On to the Maureen Dowd column. Yeah, I know I could be more creative about where to go for a Sunday morning's blogging, but the Frank Rich/Maureen Dowd pairing is telling today.
“You must want a cigarette after that,” I teased the candidate after the amorous joint press conference, as he flew from Paris to London for the finale of his grand tour.
Okay, so Dowd has some sardonic distance on the love fest — and yet I feel that she's teasing us here, showing off that she got close to the world's boyfriend — and can even kind of talk about sex with him. It's an interview. (Is Frank jealous?) She's on the plane, having a personal conversation! I'm jealous.
“I think we could work well together,” he said of Sarko, smiling broadly.

He did not get to meet his fan, Carla Bruni. “She wasn’t there,” he said. “Which I think disappointed all my staff. That was the only thing they were really interested in.”

He admitted showing “extraordinarily poor judgment” in leaving Paris after only a few hours. Watching Paris recede from behind the frosted glass of his limo was “a pretty good metaphor” for how constricted his life has become, he said, compared with his student days tramping around Europe with “a feeling of complete freedom.”
Aw. The man in the bubble. Let's write a different movie scenario — one where the fabulously successful candidate realizes he doesn't want to live like this. He only wants to be free. He just runs off one night. Have him climb out a window. He melts into the crowd. No one ever hears from him again. Maybe he grows a big beard and starts wearing glasses. Spends the rest of his life giving free legal services to the poor and teaching night classes as a third tier law school somewhere in America....

But he can't climb out the window now. He's on an airplane. With Maureen Dowd:
“But the flip side is that I deeply enjoy the work,” he said, “so it’s a trade-off.”
It's all about enjoying your work. Wouldn't it be amusing if some day, a President resigned because he just wasn't enjoying the work — not deeply, anyway?

But that comment makes me feel a little wistful and sad for the world's boyfriend. He admitted he feels trapped in his new role — he's given up his freedom. Yet, because he's a candidate, he had to immediately say that he really does enjoy it. Deeply.

Assertions of depth ≈ shallowness.

Life must be hollow now. Oh! I shed a tear for our boyfriend.
“One of the values of this trip for me was to remind me of what this campaign should be about,” he said. “It’s so easy to get sucked into day-to-day, tit-for-tat thinking, finding some clever retort for whatever comment your opponent made. And then I think I’m not doing my job, which should be to raise up some big important issues.”
The sacrifices our boyfriend makes for us.

But he's going to be even better in the future. He's going to raise up some big important issues. He won't just raise issues. He will raise up issues. He will glorify issues. And not just issues. Big important issues.
I asked how his “Citizen of the World” tour will go down in Steubenville, Ohio.

“There will probably be some backlash,” he said. “I’m a big believer that if something’s good then there’s a bad to it, and vice versa. We had a good week. That always inspires the press to knock me down a peg....

“Even if you start believing your own hype, which I rarely do, things’ll turn on you pretty quick anyway,” he said. “I have a fairly steady temperament that has at times been interpreted as, ‘Oh, he’s sort of too cool.’ But it’s not real.”
This is a good theme for him. Even, balanced, seeing the good and bad in everything....

Sigh.

28 comments:

vbspurs said...

Someone please tell me that a New York Times columnist didn't use "Access Hollywood" ratings to bolster his Op-Ed essay. Please.

I think HL Mencken died a little today, again.

Cheers,
Victoria

chuck b. said...

You're salty today, Ann Salthouse.

Ruth Anne Adams said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Awesome said...

“One of the values of this trip for me was to remind me of what this campaign should be about,” he said. “It’s so easy to get sucked into day-to-day, tit-for-tat thinking, finding some clever retort for whatever comment your opponent made. And then I think I’m not doing my job, which should be to raise up some big important issues.”

Sucked?
Tit?
'Job?
Raise Up?

Is BO subliminally flirting with MoDo?

Awesome said...

The whole column read as if the two of them had joined the Mile High Club on the flight from Paris.

vbspurs said...

If BO is subliminally flirting with MoDo, MO had better not find out else BO will lose his Mojo.

Doh,
Victoria

Jim Hu said...

Hmm... so there was room for MoDo on the plane, but no room for Ryan Lizza? The Obama apologists argued that there weren't enough seats for everyone who wanted on, but I haven't seen a list of who actually got to go on the magical mystery tour.

Zach said...

"Even if you start believing your own hype, which I rarely do..."

Dust Bunny Queen said...

Democratic theme song for the convention?

Palladian said...

"Watching Paris recede from behind the frosted glass of his limo was “a pretty good metaphor” for how constricted his life has become, he said, compared with his student days tramping around Europe with “a feeling of complete freedom.”

Hmm, did Maureen Dowd bring her copy of "The Bell Jar" on the plane?

"There is something demoralizing about watching two people get more and more crazy about each other, especially when you are the only extra person in the room.

It's like watching Paris from an express caboose heading in the opposite direction– every second the city gets smaller and smaller, only you feel it's really you getting smaller and smaller and lonelier and lonelier, rushing away from all those lights and that excitement at about a million miles an hour."

I hope this campaign doesn't end with someone putting their head in the oven.

Zach said...

Hmm... so there was room for MoDo on the plane, but no room for Ryan Lizza?

Dowd sat in Obama's lap the entire flight, eliminating the need for a seat.

vbspurs said...

LOL Zach!

You quoted earlier:

"Even if you start believing your own hype, which I rarely do..."

It's not good when Obama refers to the phenomenon used by a movie coming out against him

Hype: The Obama Effect

A blogpost which also mentions Oliver Stone's "W", out 22 October.

Cheers,
Victoria

Jim Hu said...

Zach - LOL!

ricpic said...

I, Obamalord, would gladly return to my student days of unscheduled anonymity, but then MY DICK WOULD SHRINK!! and that would be totally unacceptable.

rhhardin said...

You know what big ears means. Dowd was the first to mention them.

rhhardin said...

The question is how the theater even gets into the public debate.

I'd guess the 19th Amendment.

Ralph said...

I’m not doing my job, which should be to raise up some big important issues.
Such as the dead.

vbspurs said...

Such as the dead.

Wouldn't raising McCain's campaign be counterproductive?

Cheers,
Victoria

Theo Boehm said...

That quote from The Bell Jar is a little disturbing.
I certainly hope there isn't a Sylvia Plath Bake-Off among his many girlfriends were President Obama not to be elected.

veni vidi vici said...

"This is a good theme for him. Even, balanced, seeing the good and bad in everything...."

yeah, but if he doesn't start burnishing it with something beyond smalltalk soon (and no, i'm not talking about committee-authored position papers on his web site, i'm talking about his thoughts and positions, synthesized and articulated by himself, through his own piehole) I predict that it's going to accelerate public burnout.

Then again, what do I know - how many people voted for Kerry again?

garage mahal said...

ENOUGH already with this ally man crush. I want a manly man like John Sidney McCain. He chokes dignitaries while out of the country. That's leadership. He's crazy, old and forgetful - and has a hair trigger. Do we want allies working with us, or do we just choke them? The choice is clear.

OldGrouchy said...

Obama, Obama, Obama! Just words, the Constitution, just words!

Beth said...

Obama! Just words, the Constitution, just words!

No, that's Alberto Gonzalez.

OldGrouchy said...

"He'll he'll demand your soul, he'll establish a Civilian National Defense Corps, funded as well as the Department of Defense." Or, was that only MO's words?

Wake up, Beth, your national nightmare is over and guess what your BushHilter didn't overturn the Constitution in spite of your rabid flights of fancy.

Jeez, will you Obamanuts grow up and stop with the nonsense you've been spreading since 2001! But, have a nice day!

section9 said...

You know, just out of interest, I wonder how Maureen Dowd's fantasy life has been lately...

"...bucking and plunging like a demented mustang..."

This wasn't a column. This was porn.

Beth said...

OldGrouchy, I have no idea what you're babbling about. You seem to be projecting any number of your fears and fantasies on me. You have a nice day, too.

vbspurs said...

DBQ, I referenced your "Boyfriend's back" suggestion in Monday's blogpost. :)

It's actually about Hillary Clinton, though.

Cheers,
Victoria

Salamandyr said...

I don't buy his assertion that he doesn't buy his own hype. The man oozes a presumption of superiority with every breath.