The Night I Went To Bed With Nancy Pelosi

This past Saturday night I settled in to watch the Senate debate and vote on health care reform.  Big disappointment.  There was none of the “theater” that  had surrounded the House debate which took place two weeks ago.  The entire thing took less than an hour. On the Saturday night of two weeks earlier I had sat all evening  glued to my TV watching CSpan coverage of the House of Representatives shenanigans.  A day or two later, De was in the office and told us that he had spent two hours on Saturday night watching that debate.  I chimed in that I had spent the entire night watching the goings on.  De’s reaction was, “And I thought I was a loser!”   If nothing else,  it was nice to know that  I had made him feel better about himself.  A mitzvah.

Although the House proceedings were more or less pro forma I was just so fascinated by the  performances of the Congresspersons. And it was all performance.  There wasn’t the remotest chance that anyone’s mind would be changed by the speeches and orations delivered by the various members.  The “fix” was in.  I was both amused and fascinated by the quaintness of the proceedings and the rules in play–the courtliness present even when there was such real enmity and differences present.  Always referencing the opposition as “the gentleman or gentlelady”  from whatever state.  Just once, just once  I wish someone had said something along the lines, “The gentleman from South Carolina is a fuckin’ asshole”…or something like that.  It was way more civil and dispassionate l than I would have liked. 

I like to play a game when I’m watching this kind of stuff.  When I don’t know the legislator who has the floor,  I like to guess if he or she is a Rebublican or a Democrat–just by appearances.  I have a very, very high success rate.  First of all if the congressperson is a minority, that’s a no brainer.  And if it’s a woman, it’s way more likely that we have a Democrat here.  But the real skill comes when it’s a white male who is under scrutiny.  First, I check the nose.  If that’s a Jewish nose I’m looking at…well there’s a 99+ % likelihood that’s a Democrat, (just check your blog history).  When I apply this criteria I can’t help but think of Arlen Spector (anagram: Learn Respect).  Here’s a guy with a punam that’s a dead giveaway.  Yet, for so many years he was a Republican.  He finally (and necessarily) switched over.  But, I think he must often have felt tortured and  so much like a “woman trapped in a man’s body” and now he’s transgendered to his rightful place.   But, to get back to my “diving rod” for determining party affiliation; if it’s a white male with a smallish nose, the best way to figure out his politics is to check  his hair.  Neatly combed….straight as an arrow part, no question–that’s someone from the GOP.  Bushy haired, desheveled…well you get it.

The members of  the House are a lot different from those in the Senate.  First of all, from the day they’re elected, they’re running for re-election which is two years later.   In many cases, this is the best job some of these people will ever have–by far-….why wouldn’t they want to keep it.  A lot of them come from very rural areas and are, as my father used to say, “local yokels”.  As a generality, they have a lot less sophistication and polish than their counterparts in the Senate.  A lot more fun to watch.

The health care debate wore on and on. I was getting very tired but was able to stay awake for a squeaker of a vote around one AM.  Despite the fact that it contained a ridiculous restriction on coverage for abortions, I was generally pleased.  The entire  Democratic leadership  went overboard in praising the resourcefulness and steadfastness of the Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi (anagram: Canny Islope).  By the time  she took the podium to make a speech, I had settled into my bed. After a bit, my  lids started closing  and I dozed off to  the sweet sound of the Speaker’s voice.

Hope everyone has a happy Thanksgiving.


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