February 8, 2008

Fight no more forever

Sadness. Despair. Heartbreak. Carrots.When I first heard the news that Mitt Romney was dropping out of the presidential race, my reaction was scattershot. Like a child who has just lost his pet parakeet in a gas leak, I sat, speechless, as a panacea of bewildered emotions fluttered through my head. So many questions, so few answers.How did we get here? When Mittens beat out that heartless wench Shannon O’Brien in 2002, I can’t say I was thrilled, but people spoke highly of him as a reformer. It seemed natural to have a socially liberal, economically conservative governor work alongside the solidly blue General Court. So what did Mittens do? He took gigantic, BFG-sized steps to the right on the death penalty, gay marriage, abortion, and stem cell research, while barely focusing on anything else. In 2006, he spent 212 days out of state, most of which consisted of him making fun of the commonwealth he was supposed to be governing. The man supposed to rebuild the Republican party in Massachusetts instead left it in shambles and his heir apparent was crushed in a landslide. So as his support widened in the months leading up to the primary season, I couldn’t help but wonder what the heck people were thinking.For me, Mitt Romney never stood for principles, or policy, or positions, or even principled policy positions. Instead, Romney was more like John Lithgow’s character in Third Rock From the Sun: Well intentioned, intelligent and adaptive to new challenges, but just so incredibly out of touch with his environment that he ended up making egregious, often comical, errors—his decision to croon “Who Let the Dogs Out” at an MLK Day rally in Jacksonville, for instance, or his Thanksgiving day football game, complete with cones, flags, and matching jerseys. In his everyday actions on the trail, there was always a hint of surrealism mixed in.From time to time, flashes of real, extraterrestrial, Romnipotence would pop to the surface. Poor Mittens didn’t understand that a Vanilla Steamer was more than just an option at Dairy Queen, so he ordered it anyway, because he really, really likes Dairy Queen. Likewise, I didn’t rightly care that he was Mormon, or even that he was a Republican, but his abusive relationship with his dog, Seamus stood out to me as an insight into a darker, deeper soulless interior of my former Governor. The type of man who’d tie his dog to the roof of his car is definitely the type of guy who’d desert his adopted home state in the middle of his term. Forget Mitt-bot; The living, breathing man himself was enough.So Mittens, if you’re reading this, keep your chin up and go about the rest of your life with clear eyes and a full heart. And some day, if you have the time, drop me a line. We can finally finish that conversation about radical-Islamic-nuclear-jihad-ism.Cheers.