Last night, I planned on seeing John Oliver at Chicago Theatre.
I even turned down a dinner invitation from mom, something I never normally do. One of my most sacred rules for keeping life buoyant is never turn down the opportunity to indulge in the Morelli Salad, especially when it’s prepared by the genius palate of Babs.
But when 7pm struck, instead of momentum building to begin the lonely pilgrimage of scalping a solo ticket at Chicago Theatre, where I could study the man Jon Stewart had recently entrusted with the helm of The Daily Show, all I could do was crash-out on the couch, lost in a zombie bender of “Modern Family.”
Not a bad trade-off, since “Modern Family” is a fine-tuned balance of ensemble chemistry and funny-as-fuck writing. But I wanted to watch John Oliver work. I don’t care how fine-tuned you are, when it’s just you and a microphone, in a room filled with people on the brink of laughter, there’s a glimpse of raw truth beneath the awkwardness which is a close as I’ve ever come to uncovering buried treasure.
X Marks The Spot. And It Ain’t On The Couch.
I can’t be entirely sure, since I’ve been away for 10-days. But I get the feeling the problem we’re currently having in America is the lack of raw truth beneath the awkwardness. There’s no release. Laughter is an obvious form of release, on the most basic level. I could get into the why. But who cares why? Seriously? Who?
If it works, it works. Enough said.
When there are lies beneath the awkwardness, it’s the equivalent of being held hostage and turning down freedom when the opportunity presents itself. Every election cycle the opportunity presents itself. Every election cycle we embrace our captors for the sake of little more than name recognition. Every election cycle we set ourselves up to fail.
Their job is to wear flag pins and scold. Their job is to smile for the camera and lie. Their job is to give us an unabashed glimpse of American Exceptionalism.
Americans are exceptionally fat, ignoring “early onset” in front of the word “diabetes” as a clue to put down the fork. Americans are exceptionally stupid, bending facts to accommodate the pre-disposition of a brat. Americans are exceptionally mean-spirited, seeking opportunities to win.
At all cost.
Even the cost of decency.
Especially the cost of decency.
Whenever I sit down to write, I put myself in the position to be wrong. But this time I’m right: 100%. For the record, let me just say this, the victory is thin.
I hate Ted Cruz, he’s an over-educated liar in ostrich cowboy boots. I hate John Boehner, he’s an amateur negotiator with a $2 tan. I hate Paul Ryan, he’s a man with a plan and plan doesn’t rhyme with scam but it’s close enough, pal.