The Saving Grace of Thinking Fast

I watched, with some horror, news reports of the verbal onslaught that was a recent GOP debate.   Keep in mind, I didn’t actually see the debate–just the bitchy aftermath. 

I happen to be a Republican, but lately, I do believe that’s only because I can’t tolerate Democrats.    Anyway, as I watched a clip of said fisticuffs, I realized how completely uncomfortable it made me.   Namely, Michelle Bachman’s  upper cut to Texas Governor, Rick Perry regarding his Executive Order about  inoculating girls as young as 11 against the human  papillomavirus  virus, which is a leading cause of cervical cancer.   For me, a fifth generation Texan, Perry’s deer-in-the headlight response was an awkward moment.  It embarrassing and something akin to watching the horrible fights that Rosie O’Donnell and Elizabeth Hasselback used to have on their daytime gab fest, “The View”.  

Now, please keep in mind, I DO NOT watch “The View”.   To do so would be admitting that I’m a gay man, which I’m not, though admittedly, we do like the same things.   I watched their fight as I did the GOP debate…in highlights onYou Tube, the Cliff’s notes  of the new millenium.

On-air fights over politics between two people ill-equipped to have them is difficult to watch; a true exercise in awkward futility.  

Let it be known here and now that I don’t like Rosie O’Donnell. I don’t care who or what she sleeps with–that has nothing to do with it. I just don’t like her brash approach to everything she does.  I don’t like any star who assumes bully pupitdom.    Yet, I understand St. Oprah of Winfrey is giving her own talk show once again, on her OWN network.   I doubt if Rosie gets very political on this end result of her ability to kiss ass, but that won’t matter one iota for me.  I won’t watch her show.     Her party affiliation doesn’t matter either.  Liberal, Conservative….Whig Party–I don’t want anything crammed down my throat. As for the mousy Elizabeth, I probably align with her more politically, but I’m not a fan of hers either. In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised to see her caged in a medical research lab someday and forced to eat processed cheezy poofs, saccharin and nicotine 24/7.

Bachman went on to say that Perry’s   former chief of staff, Mike Toomey, lobbied on the company’s behalf  of Merck, who developed the vaccine .   Toomey now is helping run the political action committee, “Make Us Great Again”, which is taking unlimited campaign contributions to aid Perry’s presidential campaign bid.   Not only that, Merck reportedly also helped bankroll a national advocacy group headed in Texas by the mother-in-law of another staffer.

Perry’s response?   He said the program had been a mistake, but he had erred on the side of protecting girls from cancer. Furthermore, he said, the drug company’s donations represented a fraction of his $30-million campaign war chest.

 “If you are saying I can be bought for $5,000, I’m offended,” was his pithy comeback.   

Seems Ricky can’t be bought for five grand…but if you shell out, $28,500 that’s a different story apparently.    Merck’s political action committee has contributed that amount to Perry’s election efforts since 2000, including $5,000 in his 2010 campaign, or so says USA TODAY  which analysed  Texas campaign-finance data.   

Perry had a national spotlight shining brightly on him.  He could have responded with something seeringly clever, but noooooooooooooo.   He and his perfectly coiffed hair just stood there.

What bothered me about Elizabeth Hasselback is the exact same thing that bothered me about Governor Ricky.  I deduced that these two chicks just can’t think very fast.   Now,  the sign of a good politician is his ability to think on her or her feet.   As a politican, no one could touch Clinton who was primo at thinking on his feet in tough situations.   

.

I can think of Clinton and this comeback in particular and two words come to mind:  brass ones.  

Obviously, Liz and Rick could learn a thing or two.

Witty comebacks are as follows:

EXAMPLE #1

My brother-in-law was asked by his 11-year-old son, “What’s a 69?”

My brother-in-law responded, “It’s the last year the Mets won the pennant”.

Brilliant.

EXAMPLE #2

A friend was having trouble with her marriage. The relationship she had with her husband was very acrimonious. They sniped at each other constantly.  She was angry over his lack of affection and overall bad mood. He thought she had gained too much weight over the years.

Well, she made an appointment to see the doctor to figure out what was wrong.   We met at her house after her appointment.  We were talking about an impending procedure she needed to have when her husband came through the door. I braced myself for the nastiness.   I wasn’t disappointed at all.

He asked her about her visit to the doctor.  She replied that they’d talk about it later. He then continued to press the issue and asked if the doctor mentioned anything about her “fat ass”.

Her answer? Destined to be a classic, she said, “No. He didn’t ask about YOU!”

Fabulous.

EXAMPLE #3

True story that happened my Junior year in High School.

I’d come home from some event and placed my purse down on the kitchen table as I sauntered into the kitchen. It opened wide enough to reveal its contents, namely a round, light pink plastic compact looking container, holding a blister pack that was filled with 30 tiny, white pills, all marked to coincide with a specific day of the month.  

My father walked  by and glanced inside my purse.   He reached in, picked up the pink blister pack and asked sternly, “What the hell is this?”

Without missing a beat, I answered,  “It’s a Pez sundial”.

Grounded?  Yes

Knocked up?   Never.

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