Derelict Junction

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Wednesday, August 11, 2004

Soldiers in Apathy.

Posted by Hello
Time to put down those opinions and decide. The world has become a complex and volatile place. No one can be faulted for standing up for what they believe is best right now. But I have reached a point that has stopped me cold in my tracks. All of my recent loud-mouth campaigning is now silent. For I no longer know where I stand. This month, a decision must be made, and that is the decision of what to care less about, The Republican National Convention (starting Aug.30), or the Olympics (starting Aug. 13th).

This really shouldn't be a problem for me. After all, I grew up in the apathetic 80's, and sat out the disillusioned 90's, so I'm an old hat at this. Still, this is a tough one. On one hand, there's the predictable patriotic posturing of the Republicans, as they desperately try to use simple, easy to understand, slogans to gain acceptence of middle America in order to push through further tax cuts for the rich. On the other hand, there's equestrian events and the USA basketball team. Tough call.

I'm going to have to go with the Olympics, and it's not because I secretly love all the country music that will wallpaper the convention. Even though the Olympics only happen once every 4 years, I feel like I've already seen them. Remember that Keri Shrug gymnast? Everyone was so amazed at her performance except people who saw the same storyline unfold with Mary Lou Retton years before, the only difference was it meant more in the 80's because the Cold War was in full swing (Bring back the evil Soviets!). What was even worse was when Chris Kattan did Shrug on SNL, that got the old apathy gland a pumpin'. I just don't think I can stomach another one of those once-in-a-lifetime moments, AGAIN.

As a sports fan, I do like seeing the less popular sports take center stage, but for many of those you're basically seeing them done no different, just faster. Say what you want about the X-Games, but every year you know you're going to see some nut-job do something incredibly dangerous that's never been tried before. The only true interest I have is seeing the USA basketball team lose, since they've done so poorly leading up to the Olympics. But we all know they'll probably steamroll the competition. Boring!

The Convention on the other hand will be vastly predictable, but I still can't deny my overwhelming compulsion to care slightly about. The presidential election is a dead heat. Even now, as Kerry seems to be pulling ahead in the key swing staes, the difference in the polls is still within the margin of error. So I will care slightly, if for no other reason, than to see how low the GOP will swoop in an attempt to woo both the easily scared and uneducated.

Patton Oswalt has a great joke about how it always amazes him when he meets poor people who support Bush. He equates that to a teenage girl who blows Michael Damian at a county fair and truly believes he's in love with her and won't forget that moment. As he puts it, "No, honey, he appreciated the blowjob, but he's not coming back. Don't fool yourself."

So even though the prime directive of the Republican Party is to desperately protect the wealth from taxation (and allow a few friendly corporations to win multi-mullion dollar government contracts along the way!), they'll be doing everything in their power (hell, yes, country music!) to seem like just you and me.

So you'll have to run solo, Colin Powell, I'll be at home caring just slightly about the Republican Convention.

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At 6:31 PM, Blogger J Shifty said...

You've forgotten the Olympic event that makes all the melodramatic backstory vignettes and rampant unhappily strapped-down breasts palatable: tracking the slow unraveling of Bob Costas' physical and mental state.

Covering several dozen olympic events wall-to-wall, twenty four hours a day takes a slow, delightful toll on a man. I mean, we're only three days into things, and Bob already has a glazed look in his eyes and several hairs around his temples have taken on lives of their own. Did I detect a slight eyelid twitch during that introduction to women's beach volleyball this afternoon?

Never mind the race for the gold. This is the reason the Olympics are still worth watching.

 

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