Tom McLaughlin

A former history teacher, Tom is a columnist who lives in Lovell, Maine. His column is published in Maine and New Hampshire newspapers and on numerous web sites. Email: tommclaughlin@fairpoint.net

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Venting




Several things have been bothering me lately, and what good is it to be a columnist if I can’t spout off about them in this space? I’ve been yelling at the television and that’s a sign I need to vent. I’ll start with cliches.

If I use an annoying cliche, someone please - please berate me publicly for it. And if I should ever repeat it, I pledge here and now to make a $100 donation to your favorite charity, even if it happens to be the OJ Simpson or Hot Rod Blagojevich Defense Fund. I’m that serious. Meanwhile, I’m begging people in the media to stop saying “thrown under the bus.” I’ve had enough of that phrase. I’m ready to highjack a bus and drive it into the NBC Headquarters in New York City if I hear it again.

While we’re at it, I’m already sick of “take a haircut,” aren’t you? I heard it for the first time only about a month ago, but it’s gotten to me already. I know we’re in tough economic times and we all have to cut back. I promise to do my share, but please don’t phrase it that way anymore, okay? Let’s resurrect “tighten our belts” for a while, and when that wears out, I’ll come up with something else. There must be a thesaurus for worn-out phrases out there somewhere. I’m volunteering to buy one and list alternative ways of trying to sound hip.

Thank goodness “think outside the box” has gone out of fashion. Though I’ve been attending just as many meetings as I’ve always had to, I haven’t heard that for months now and I’m very thankful. People in sports use cliches the most, but I can forgive them. They don’t claim to be smart. They’re not expected to be gifted at expressing themselves, only doing things. Though most of them don’t seem too bright, politicians pretend to be intelligent. So when they use cliches, it’s much more annoying because they think they sound so snappy when they just sound dumb, especially if it’s Nancy Pelosi.

Speaking of Rod Blagojevich and haircuts, what is it about sleazy Serbs and their hair? It’s pretty clear that whatever time Blagojevich has when he’s not selling Senate seats, shaking down children’s hospitals, or trying to get editorial writers fired, he’s working on his hair. It’s so important to him that the Chicago Sun Times suspected Blago suffered from “Narcissistic Personality Disorder.” He must have stayed up late watching Ted Koppel a lot when he was a kid and made him a role model. Then there’s Radovan Karadzic. Remember him? The guy accused of murdering 7500 Bosnians about twelve years ago just because they weren’t Serbs? It looked to me that, aside from killing people, the thing he cared most about in the world was his hair. In addition to being a mass murderer, he was also a psychiatrist who could have diagnosed himself with Blago’s disorder mentioned above. I don’t know if he has access to hairspray and mirrors while he’s on trial in The Hague for war crimes, but if he hasn’t, that might the punishment that hurts him most. Better put him on suicide watch.

And speaking of liberal politicians from the upper midwest, there’s Comb-over Carl Levin, Democrat Senator from Michigan. I shouldn’t have to spell this out, but look Carl: a lot of guys go bald on top and it’s doesn’t make you a bad person. Invariably, it looks dumb when you grow that side hair long and comb it over your bald dome and then plaster it down somehow. It doesn’t fool anybody and proclaims to the world that “I’m bald and I can’t deal with it!” If it gets too cold up there in Michigan, ask Joe Biden where he got his hair plugs installed or wear a hat.

There now. I feel better already.

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8 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Give it up. You can't write and you aren't funny.

12/17/08, 9:01 AM  
Anonymous Pam said...

Then write your own funny articles, Anonymous, and let us judge. Oh right, we won't know who you are...

12/17/08, 9:28 AM  
Anonymous Swamprat said...

Tom - I think you're great. I LOVED your column. Anonymous has a screw loose somewhere. I suspect it's in his brain.

12/17/08, 9:35 AM  
Anonymous Geo said...

Loved it, particularly, being a bald man from Michigan, the part about "comb-over Carl". Keep'em coming.

12/17/08, 10:23 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Tom

I think you need to get better information on the Kosovo/Bosnia/Serbia mess.

Bosnia is definitely part of the bloody borders of islam and the Serbs are doing an excellent job, putting the regional muslim thugs in their place. "WERE" doing, I should probably say. Until BJ-Billy had to start a war against Serbia, to distract American TV audiences from his lies and deceptions.

Serbs are a good Christian people, who have repeatedly defended Europe against the onslaught of the Turks and Ottomans for centuries. The fighting between Bosniaks, Kosovars, Albanians and Serbs isn't pretty, but the Serbs are definitely the good guys with a good cause. And that time, America was WRONG! And on the side of jihad! I hope , that mistake will never be repeated.

TC

12/17/08, 7:30 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I believe that the reason politicians and many others use the cliches is because they want people to know what they're talking about. Not just to look snappy. They believe that people can catch on better to their ideas if they use those catch-phrases.

Another thing, the hair? Um. Don't celebrities spend 100 dollars or more on their hair? And yet, we don't complain about them. Oh, wait right, that's because they have to look good because they're always on tv right? And in those trashy magazines if Britney Spears dares go out of her house with out the right amount of hair spray she's called trash.

But wait, aren't politicians on tv a lot too? Hmm...

And even if his hair does look silly, why judge him. I don't hear you complaining about your students coming into class with their hair color changed from blond to blue.

Even if they are political figures with bad taste, I think you need to find something with a little more depth to complain about.

Or have you got nothing better to talk about?

TSM, Conway

12/23/08, 11:13 PM  
Blogger canadian52 said...

Sounds like you've been dealing with alot. I'd like to share something with you. I know of a social networking site kind of like Facebook where you can vent in your own words over the phone and the message will be posted online without having to think about what your writing then you can post it on your blog. Here is a post on the website that talks about how Voike can be used as a venting tool. https://ho.voike.com/.

12/28/08, 6:13 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Some more info you will not find in the MSM on the Serbia/Kosovo disaster:

http://gatesofvienna.blogspot.com/2008/12/mass-grave-of-serbs.html#readfurther

No, it's NOT about hair ...

TC

12/30/08, 8:04 PM  

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