From our alt-brethren at The Weekly Dig:
Day Three â 'We've been drinking since we got here â¦'
dispatches from one pathetic presidential primary
by Chris Faraone
I promised to bring you in the back rooms and bar booths where locals, staffers, volunteers and journalists dance the pre-primary tango. Weâve been drinking since we got here, but on Saturday we hit the strip with pens drawn. While most reporters crowded in and outside of the debates at St. Anselmâs, my crew split up to cover the jamborees that campaigns host around Manchester.
I arrived at Murphyâs Tavern minutes before the Ron Paul wagon pulled in. Unlike in Boston, where bars were reluctant to change the channel from ESPN to C-SPAN when the Democratic National Convention was in town, even Manchesterâs greasiest moron holes blast politics during primary week. At Murphyâs, only one screen was left on football, presumably for the drunk, loud Neanderthal who was committed to screaming over the debate.
At first, the only dissent around the room came from a peanut gallery of Huckabee supporters in the back. It was standard arbitrary cheer; like when insecure baseball fans broadcast their preference for the visiting team. The Paul people were equally obnoxious, but considering that they had the home team advantage, and that their candidate was the only Republican on stage who speaks truth â not hollow consultant scripted tag lines â they had a right to party. Their tendency to roar every time Paul got face time reminded me of when my entire family went to see my cousinâs two-second cameo in Married to the Mob.
The only Republican candidate who the Paul supporters outright booed was Romney; one guy suggested that Mitt could free America from its foreign oil habit by simply shaving his head. The group seemed to respect John McCain and, for the most part, lacked the aggressive prep school arrogance that you generally find at grand old gatherings. Thatâs no surprise, since Paul is more of a cheap suit Libertarian than a Brooks Brothers Republican.
I left Murphyâs near the end of the Republican debate to find a liberal bar. Ignorant as most conservatives are, lefties have them beat on closed-mindedness. As I predicted, the gather.com herd at Millyâs Tavern had no interest in the Republican debate, even though a lot of them were allegedly there to write about it. The entire scene at this party was abhorrent; in addition to how the kiddies talked through the Republicans and shushed the room for Barack and Hillary, organizers had roped off a corner for about a couple dozen bloggers to set up. Since my next dispatch will feature a heavy tirade on blog culture, Iâll hold back for now. But if anyone can explain why I have to share space, air and wi-fi signals with every post-collegiate dip with a shiny MacBook Pro and trite opinions, please enlighten me in the comment section below.
Iâm sorry â did you want me to tell you about the actual debate? On the Democratic side, my only notable opinion is that Barack Obama sucks every time he gets knocked off his stump. Heâs a gifted speaker, but he canât smack the curve balls. I would have something to say about Bill Richardson and John Edwardsâ performances, but since theyâre unpopular amongst the college weblog crowd, I was unable to hear anything they said over all the chitchat that went down when they were talking. Well, I do have one thing: I think that Bill Richardson and Dennis Kucinich have the same hair stylist. Either that or their mothers still lick their hands and glue their bangs down with spit before they leave their houses every day.
Sunday morning called for a bowel rupturing brunch. This shouldnât have been a problem at 11 am; most visitors were out campaigning at events, and the few yuppies back in downtown Manchester were all in line at Dunkin Donuts playing with their Blackberries. But due to the local service industryâs drastic unpreparedness, I had to walk out of three fast fooderies after not being served for several minutes.
I would have been angry about my hapless calorie hunt had it not ended with a blessing. Just when I was about to get angry, some guy with a bullhorn announced that in minutes Kucinich would be appearing at a nearby restaurant with Hollywood heavyweight Viggo Mortensen. I heart Dennis, but I was enthralled to see Viggo, who is kind of an inside joke between me and my girlfriend; not because we think heâs a bad actor or anything like that, but because of the Vanity Fair cover on which he looked like a gay porn star, and because his name is Viggo.
As it turns out, Viggo is the Goddamn man; pretty boy is the most eloquent and enlightened star endorser out here pitching. He knows issues, and heâs right: this country really is in too much trouble to not have a real leader with compassionate convictions. Too bad we never will. Since Ron Paul had been able to sneak so much progressive rhetoric into his debate appearance, and Kucinich had been excluded from the Democratic crossfire, I asked the congressman if heâd ever considered running as a Republican. He gave me an answer so strong and so passionate that for the first time I understood how he roped that stunning wife of his. The man has heart, and next to thick cocks, thatâs probably the number one turn-on for most women.
The semi-homeless guy with the five-foot dreadlock at the Kucinich press conference didnât make it to Romneyâs event at Elm Street Middle School in Nashua. Itâs a good thing, too, because they would have stopped him at the door. This event â billed as âAsk Mitt Anythingâ â was a pristine production. Mitt rode in on a cocaine white unicorn cradling a small child. Other than a red hot blonde MySpace slut with hoop earrings, everyone on stage looked like they just jumped off a page in J Crewâs winter catalogue.
I can understand why rich, simple-minded yuppies and other assorted selfish jerkoffs gravitate to Romney. He says all the optimistic economic babble, family junk and racist anti-immigration fluff they love, which is especially easy when everybodyâs lobbing questions at you. Sure, you could ask Mitt anything, but only if itâs written on a cue card that gets handed to you at the rally. To the lady who got up and gave a spiel about how her and her kid have diabetes: if thatâs not true I hope your husband takes your youngest daughterâs virginity with a baseball bat.
Sorry for the aggression. I should be happy that I got into the event wearing my dingy old wax coat. Not everyone was so lucky; due to a costume ban, some global warming protestors in snowman suits were denied access, as was a girl who drove from Haverhill to hold her sign. After covering Romney for three years in Massachusetts, I can attest to the metaphorical value of their non-admittance. If Mitt pulls this off, they wonât be the only ones left outside.