Tuesday, November 04, 2008

The Sorry Dance

I descended into the depths of the Duane Reade on 59th and 8th, looking for where they might sell money orders. Amidst the aisles and aisles of candy, paper towels and soap. Around a corner, I nearly ran into a middle-aged black woman with short hair and glasses. I feinted to my left; she to her right. We were momentarily suspended in space and time. Finally we do-si-do'd.

"Sorry!" she said. "Dance."

It was a funny interaction and a funny thing for her to say. It got me thinking about other sorry dances.

Like Larry Eagleburger being forced to apologize for criticizing Sarah Palin. He'd originally told the truth - that she is obviously not ready to be Vice President. He didn't savage her - he's a Republican, after all, and often cited by McCain as one of five former Secretaries of State who support him (not that he can remember them all ) - but he made a very sober and lucid assessment of her obvious lack of preparation and know-how. Transparently, someone from the campaign then dressed him down overnight, read him the riot act. I don't know what they might have said to him. He doesn't have a political future - he's 78 years old. Did they torture him? In effect, they cut off his cock. They forced him to humiliate himself on Fox News, to bow down low, to sweatingly and haltingly take back everything he'd said in serene sincerity the day before. It's suggestive of dissidents of authoritarian regimes being forced to recant or die. The Nazis, the Soviets, the Khmer Rouge. The Spanish Inquisition. Convert or die. Confess or die. Those demonic - worse than demonic, really - bargains. You sell your soul but get nothing in return. Honestly, what did they tell him to scare him straight? Or is he just that weak?

So that's the sorry dance. It's the jangly dance performed by a fool when those he's desperate to please pepper the floor beneath his feet with bullets.

Fortunately, a stranger's riding into town.

Obama will win big today.