Showing posts with label Unintended Consequences. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Unintended Consequences. Show all posts

Monday, August 14, 2023

I Became A Bully

I became a bully.  I didn’t mean to.  I didn’t want to.  I think it happened because I didn’t do enough to make sure it didn’t happen.  I learned early on that the bullied kids often became the best bullies.  That key bit of information should have been enough to keep me out of this, but it didn’t.

Now that we’re all in the third quarter of our lives, I’ve heard my classmates say that our school had a problem with bullying.  I don’t know how to tell if that’s true.  We certainly weren’t as bad as you saw in the movies, but it sure felt like something wrong was happening when it happened to you.  

We were a small school.  Education in Jackson became fractured over the issue of integration, and St. Andrews decided early on to try and go their own way to avoid both sides of the argument.  They also chose to pay their bills with tuition rather than depending on large donations, so it ended up being the most expensive school in the state.

In the fifth grade, I began to grow faster than my classmates.  A York barbell set lay dormant in our playroom from when Coach Jack Carlisle wanted my brother to move with him from Murrah to Prep, and he wanted him to put on muscle weight, hence the barbells.  My brother found much more to occupy his time at Prep than football, so the barbells gathered dust until I discovered them.

Beamon Drugs in Maywood Mart had a different selection of magazines than the Totesum nearby.  They hadn’t any comic books, only things older kids and adults might read.  Architectural Digest caught my eye.  My dad liked my AD magazines so much that he subscribed.  I also found Strength and Health and Iron Man.  Beamon Drugs also had a godawful early form of milk whey protein powder and a broad selection of dietary supplements.  I decided I had no interest in making my body a temple, but a bulldozer might be useful.

One of the first people to notice the effects of my growth spurt and weight training was Jack Carlisle, who lobbied me to switch to Prep from the fifth grade until my second year in college.  For a guy with only one leg, he was pretty tenacious.  

We were pretty isolated from the Junior High kids in fifth and sixth grade.  They had a reputation, but apart from some taunts across the football field that separated us, their reputation had nothing to do with us.  That all changed when we were in the seventh grade.  We moved from our safe, isolated part of campus into their midst. 

My introduction to seventh grade was that a boy from Prep sent out word that, for him to have an adequate position at Prep, he would have to fight me.  That made absolutely no sense, but after sizing him up, I decided it wouldn’t be so bad.  Word went out that we were supposed to meet at Mr. Gattis Pizza (now Amerigo) for the big fight.  None of us could drive yet, so getting a ride to Mr. Gattis without betraying the purpose was probably the most complicated part of the mission.

I had never been in a fight before, so I let him start.  He threw a few punches that landed but didn’t seem to make much difference.  In the movies, if you hit a guy in the jaw, he passes out.  That didn’t happen.  Maybe I was immune.  I’ve been hit in the jaw a lot since, and it never made me pass out.  

I didn’t want to hit him because that didn’t seem gentlemanly, so I tried a hold I had seen on television.  I knew wrestling was fake, but I figured the moves were authentic, so I turned him around and wrapt him in what I thought was a full nelson, only I’d done it wrong, and I was pressing his arm against the arteries in his neck in, what the wrestlers called, a sleeper hold.  

Just as his body began to go limp, grownups ran out of the pizza restaurant to make us stop.  It’s probably a good thing because sleeper holds are actually quite dangerous, and neither of us knew what we were doing.  Our unimpressive encounter satisfied my opponent, and he never challenged me again.  I’d gotten through my first real fight without any damage and an overestimation of my abilities.  The grownups stopped before it ended, but I had the advantage.

Back at St. Andrews, the boys taunting us safely across the football field were now a few steps away.  That changed things considerably.  Most of the eighth and ninth graders weren’t bullies, but some were notorious, and the notorious ones loved nothing more than waiting for us seventh graders to try and gather outside the classroom.

Winter in Mississippi is more of a concept than a reality.  January of that year was unusually cold despite our reputation, and one morning, while we were in class, it began to snow.  When the lunch bell rang, everybody ran out of the upper school buildings looking for enough snow to make a ball to throw at each other.  Soon, we used up all the snow around the buildings and the bleachers, and intrepid snowball fighters moved out onto the football field and its fresh coat of snow.

We seventh graders got there first, but that made no difference when the ninth graders began to move in.  Soon, the biggest bullies found my friend Walter and started tripping him so he’d fall into the snow and mud, pushing him when he tried to get up while his three bully friends roared in laughter.  Something broke in me.  “I’m bigger than him!  I’m bigger than anybody!” I thought.  I ran to Walter’s antagonist and shoved him with all my might.  “I’m tired of you!” I shouted as he stumbled back.  “I’m tired of your shit!” I said his name. “STOP!”  I shouted and slammed my foot on the snowy earth.  I’d heard people say, “I put my foot down” all my life without knowing it was a natural response when you loudly wanted to make your point.

The moments that followed lasted forever.  Nobody expected this.  Lots of people joked about “what would happen if Boyd lost his temper?”  “What would happen if Boyd got in a real fight?”  That moment was here.  Walter’s antagonist was shocked but ready.  He came at me with vengeance and arms flailing.  One, two, three punches to the face.  He was stronger than the boy at Mr. Gattis, but hitting my face wasn’t a sweet spot.  He grappled me, and I wrestled back.  Young, untrained, but unrestrained bodies were testing their limits.  

One edge of our football field ended in a steep hill that led down into some undeveloped woods.  Our pushing and grappling landed us on the precipice of this hill.  I got enough leverage to slam him on the ground by twisting him over my hip.  His glasses flew off.

I pulled him up from the ground and pinned his arms behind him,  I could tell I couldn’t hold him long, but while I had him, I shouted, “Somebody get his glasses!”  Fighting was one thing; breaking a boy's glasses could get you in real trouble.  Walter’s nose was still a little bloody and red when he slipped in to pick up his bully's glasses.  He wanted the bully to know he was a part of this.  Bob Trent and Mrs. Sergeant ran in from the blind spot behind us to break us up.  “Boyd!  Stop!  Stop!”  They yelled for me to stop, not the boy I was fighting.  That made me feel horrible and guilty.  

I didn’t get in trouble, but I got a lecture.  “Your body is changing, Boyd.”  “You have to be careful.”  “You could do some real damage.”  “There are always better ways of solving things.”  We never discussed it, but I always wanted to ask Bob Trent why I didn’t get in trouble.  Was it because he knew how the fight started, or was it just because fighting wasn’t as serious as I thought?  Even though I stopped the fight to save that boy’s glasses, I felt very guilty.  I told my father what happened, thinking I’d be in trouble.  He said I did the right thing.

I don’t think you could say I won either of these fights, but I didn’t lose, and in kid parlance, that meant something.  What I didn’t know–what I had no real reason to suspect, was that if you stood up to a bully, that made him want to befriend you and make you one of them.  I suppose that’s what hazing is all about.  You pass some sort of test, so you become one of them.  My former enemy, now new friends, fully expected me to bully my old friends, and I hate to admit it, but sometimes I did.  

I don’t think I was prepared to be asked to join them.  What bothers me now is that maybe a part of me saw this as a social promotion.  Sitting with the bullies might make me look cooler than sitting with the nerds, even though I had nothing to talk about with the bullies.  Spending all day talking about whose breasts had gotten the biggest and speculating about who was doing what with whom wasn’t nearly as interesting as figuring out how the muppets operated or all the cool things the Ultra Seven Warriors could do.

Bullying was pretty easy.  Find a trait of the person you’re picking on, it doesn’t really matter what trait, exaggerate it and draw it out in a funny voice, and they’ll get mad.  They might get really mad, but what were they gonna do?  I was the strongest kid in three schools and had a team of meaner bullies behind me.  For one boy, we changed the “i” in his name to “eeee, " which was enough to bully him.  Another boy had a big nose and a funny voice, so we called him Gonzo after the muppet monster on the Muppet Show.  

I didn’t like bullying, but it became my place in our little society.  I was the bully victim turned bully himself.  Maybe they all were.  Maybe being bullied is what made you become a bully.  

One of my new friends played football with me.  Before games, Coach Clark was determined we spend two or three hours with our teammates in quiet reflection, thinking about football and the lord.  During one of these quiet sessions, one of the biggest bullies of all told me about what his father did to him.  I believed him, too, because when we played, his father would shout the most horrible things to his son from the sidelines.  Nothing he did was good enough.  He tried shouting at me too, but I just looked at him like, “Who the hell are you?” He never addressed me again.  Without a doubt, whatever this boy was doing to seventh graders at Saint Andrew's was nothing compared to what his father did to him at home.  I never thought of him as a bully again.  He was a victim.  He still did and said the most horrible things, but more horrible things were happening to him than anyone knew.  

A famous artist sent his daughter to school in ninth grade with us.  I’m not really qualified to speculate on this, but something was very different about her.  I suspect it may have been some form of autism, but nobody ever told us anything.  Maybe even the teachers didn’t have a very complete diagnosis of her as this was still the seventies.  She also had terrible scoliosis and had to wear a bulky back brace to endure sitting in the classroom all day.  

I don’t know what to tell you about this girl’s intelligence.  She made it through her classes with us ok, but she found socializing nearly impossible.   Her hygiene was inconsistent and awkward at an age when most girls were obsessed with their looks.  She soon found herself bullied by almost everyone.  Even some teachers turned their faces away from the painful spectacle in the high school courtyard every day.  They weren’t prepared for it either

She preferred Bea Donnelly and Jerry McBride and ran to them when we upset her. They tried to help her, but I always thought the school was at something of a loss about how to handle this.  Had any of the teachers explained to us what was happening, we might have been kinder or even just said, “Hey, we’re in kind of a spot here with this girl; can you help us out and be nice to her?” but no one did.  Maybe they didn’t know themselves.  

You know kids are being cruel when they replace somebody’s name with the word “The.”  For the entire student body, her name was not “Laurie”; it was “The.”  We said “The Gadd,” but what we meant was “The Monster,” “The Outsider,” and “The Misfit.”  I’ve spent forty-five years wishing I’d tried to understand this person rather than make fun of her.  I supposed that’s going to be my burden.  

My time as a bully didn’t last.  I realized it didn’t feel right.  I’d rather be the kid that tried to stop his friend from being bullied than being a bully myself.  I’ll always think that maybe life wasn’t cruel enough to me for the urge to bully to stick.  Everyone has some pain in their lives, but to stay a bully, I think there has to be more pain than reward.

I never saw most of the kids I bullied again.  I had a speech ready in my head if I ever did.  My artist friends told me how important The Gadd’s father was in the world of Mississippi artists, and my heart sank.  I could have made a difference.  As big as I was, maybe I could have turned the tide and shielded her from some of the poison other kids threw at her.  I didn’t, though.  I didn’t add to it, but I didn’t stop it.   Not stopping it when I could have made me feel more like a bully than anything else I ever did.  I stood up to these boys when they pushed Walter into the mud and snow; I could have stood up to them again, but being accepted among them changed something.  I was no longer as interested in what was right as I was in what my social position might be.

There are a million books and movies about high school and college because that’s when you go from what you really are and try on different masks to see what you will become.  For a time, I wore the mask of a bully.  I didn’t care for it, and I don’t think I was any good at it, but I learned to be cruel.  Being popular was more important than being right, at least for a while.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Karl Marx Was An Asshole

Recently I wrote about how conservatives in these troubled times are returning to their roots and re-reading Ayn Rand. In the interest of fairness, I'd like to also point out that liberals are showing a renewed interest in Karl Marx.

If you don't know, Marx was the evil genius behind communism and he was a real asshole. Despite his reputation as a humanitarian, the people who actually tried communism would tell you there wasn't much improvement between having the state own everything and the old system where the king owned everything.

Like Rand, Marx had no practical experience in any of the subjects he wrote about. He idolized Darwin but decided to forgo Darwin's extensive fieldwork and based his economic and political theories entirely on stuff he read in books.

It's not like people never gave Marxism a chance. Russia and China both tried Marxism, but the only way they could keep order was by killing tens of millions of people. Even hippies were barely able to eek out a medieval subsistence using Marxism, only made bearable by copious amounts of cannabis and lots of sex with hairy women. Marx called religion "the opiate of the people", never realizing how much actual narcotics his own system required.

Professional English asshole, Christopher Hitchens recently waxed nostalgic about Marx in his Atlantic Monthly article: The Revenge of Karl Marx. I could write a whole article on how Hitchens is an arrogant ass and pretty much wrong about everything.

To bring things full circle, I hear a lot of buzz among the republican zombies about how President Obama is trashing the constitution and ushering in an era of communism in America.

First off, Obama isn't trashing the constitution any more than any of his twenty predecessors. Compared to George W Bush, he's John Adams himself. The office of the president is far more powerful than the founding fathers ever intended, but that started some time before Lincoln and growing ever since.

Secondly, Obama isn't introducing communism. Communists take over successful, going companies to expand their power and install their social plans. Obama is taking over decidedly unsuccessful companies in what one could best describe as something of a super-power bankruptcy action for companies "too big to fail".

These companies could easily avoid any government aggression by simply getting their act together and not taking any government bailout money. It doesn't take a genius to figure out that Obama's actions with these companies is an effort to calm people's concerns about the bailout process. People want to know this money is well spent so the government is getting involved to make sure these companies do fairly logical things like reducing salaries, which, by some twisted logic, they weren't doing on their own.

Most of these companies probably won't exist in ten years, no matter what the government does. The Obama administration is trying to engineer some sort of soft landing for the rest of the economy as these really big companies implode. Obama may be liberal, but he's no communist.

To be quite honest, incendiary political speech like this really chaps my ass. I realize it's people's preferred way to play the game these days, both on the left and the right, but it's simply not helpful in any way. You have to accurately describe what's going on before you can understand it and deal with it. Otherwise, you might as well just say George Bush is Godzilla and Obama is Gamera and cheer them on from the rubble like a Japanese school kid.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Barbie and the Death of Tattoos

Every style and trend has a life span, and for some time now, I've been wondering what would signal the end of the tattoo trend in western cultures. This might be it.

Barbie, still the best selling girl's toy (now that they've eliminated those pesky Bratz dolls with fancy legal footwork) turns 50 this year and to celebrate Mattel introduces the Totally Stylin' Tattoos Barbie, which features both tattoo stickers and washable ink tattoos girls can apply to their dolls.

Most fashion trends last about a generation, then they're verboten for a while before they have a brief revival as "retro". It's been about 20 years for tattoos so they're probably headed for the Elysian fields with poodle skirts and flat-top hair cuts.

Nothing kills an edgy fashion statement like seeing it show up on a barbie doll.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Google Knows I'm Bald

As you've probably noticed, I've been experimenting with advertising on my blog.

It's not making much money, but that wasn't the point. I wanted to experiment and educate myself on this business of online advertising since I believe that's where the web and the world is headed.

The ads that interest me the most are the Google AdWords. The premise is that it reads your blog and then presents the most appropriate ads based on your content. That idea fascinates me. If I write a blog entry about two-headed zebras, then AdWords will pick ads for people who are interested in two-headed zebras (if there are any).

I've been monitoring the ads and so far it's been pretty cool. It's not always perfectly accurate though. Sometimes I might write an article about how the lawyers involved in the Dickie Scruggs scandal all suck, and AdWords will serve ads for people looking for cheap lawyers in Mississippi or I'll write about the president dealing with the economic crisis and it'll serve ads for schemes on how you can get in on all this stimulus money.

A couple of weeks ago, I started noticing AdWords serving more and more ads about hair loss and baldness cures. Now, I am bald, but I've never actually written about being bald. I looked over my old posts just to make sure.

Where were these ads coming from? At first it was a real mystery, then I started to look over the whole site and I noticed that, even though I've never written about being bald, on every page was my little profile picture that, sure enough, showed my shiny head in all its glory.

I can't find any confirmation that google is using images to gather information for their AdWords program, but it's the only way I can figure they would serve these ads. Google does have technology where computers can read images though. If you use google image search, it has a program that can look at pictures and filter out the ones that might be nude or depicting sex acts, so maybe they can read my picture and tell I'm bald.

It's a little intimidating to think computers might be that sophisticated, but it's pretty cool too. It's not artificial intelligence yet, but it gives you an idea of how people might use artificial intelligence in the future.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

How to Smoke a Cat

For many years, scientists have argued whether or not marijuana smoking has any detrimental effects on the brain, particularly in the areas of logic and cognitive functions. Recently a story out of Nebraska provided evidence to support the argument that pot can really fuck up your mind.

Police sought Twenty-year-old Acea Schomaker of Lincoln Nebraska on marijuana charges. When they found him, he was smoking a home-made bong made of plexiglas and rubber tubing, with a six-month-old kitten duct-taped inside.

Schomaker said he put the kitten inside the bong because it was high-strung and needed the marijuana smoke to calm down. Police incarcerated Schomaker, seized the bong and took custody of the cat who was turned over to an animal shelter to be checked out by a vet to see if the experience damaged its health.

Schomaker said he had smoked the cat several times before. Police charged him with animal cruelty and possession of marijuana. So far, the kitten seems to be recovering.

Link: KETV Omaha Nebraska

Friday, January 30, 2009

Miss-Matched Presidential Hands

Ok, I feel competent to comment on this story since I'm in it. Believe it or not, Barack Obama has white hands.

Among a lot of other novelty items, I sell Cardboard Standups. They're kooky, they're fun at parties and they come in all your favorite characters: including the new president of the United States, Barack Obama.

A week ago, I get a phone call from what sounds like a young, black woman asking about the Obama standup. That part wasn't all that unusual as I'd been getting calls about it for weeks. She didn't want to buy one though, she wanted me to look at its hands.

At this point, I should admit that I'd long suspected the photograph from the Obama Standup was photoshopped. The grain and focus of the head is pretty different from the body. Other than that, I never gave it much thought.

The caller wants to know if I notice anything unusual about the hands. "Not really" I said. That's when her questions start getting really pointed. "Who is this?" I ask.

She identifies herself as Dayo Olopade, saying she's a reporter for the Washington Post. For people of my generation, the Washington Post has something of a gilded reputation because of their part in Watergate. Needless to say, that caught my attention.

I'd never talked to a reporter from the Washington Post before, and I guess I had really high expectations of Post reporters, because this young woman wasn't at all what I expected one to be like. She didn't seem very professional, especially since we're ten minutes into the conversation and she's just now told me she's a reporter for the Washington Post or anybody else.

First she wants me to look at the hands. "What's he holding?" she asks. I can't really tell, it looks kind of like a blackberry, which I thought would be cool since Obama seems to be a crackberry addict. "Look closer" she says. It's glasses in his hands. "Obama doesn't wear glasses" she says.

"Well, Duh!" I'm thinking. That's because it's not his hands. The body is a stock image. To make a cardboard standup you have to start with a head-to-toe photograph and it's unlikely Advanced Graphics, the maker of the standup could have found one in the early days of the Obama campaign when they came out with the Obama standup, so they improvised, putting Obama's head on a stock image body. Several of their political standups are made the same way.

"Do you think those are white hands?" She asks. "Oh, boy" I'm thinking. This conversation just got serious. There's a young black woman from the Washington Post asking me if a product I'm selling of the first black president, just a few days from his historic inauguration has white hands.

The thing is, I'd been staring at the hands for a few minutes trying to figure out what he's holding, and it never occurs to me that they're white! We'd sold a bunch of these by this time and nobody else had noticed they were white either.

"What was your name again?" I ask. I'd been searching the Washington Post website for any mention of her name, spelling it in several different names and nothing's coming up. "You're with the Washington Post?"

That's when she adds that it's not the Post she works for but a news magazine they own called The Root. She directs me to, and sure enough her name's on there, so I take more questions.

The thing is she's not asking questions, she's making statements and not particularly asking me anything. This lady is mad that Obama has white hands. For some reason, she has it in her head the body belongs to Tom Daschle, because he wears glasses and Obama doesn't.

I try to explain to her what photoshop is and what stock images are and she's just not getting it. "And who owns this stock image company?" She asks. I don't know! There are dozens and dozens of them, maybe even hundreds. Asking me who owns the stock image company is kind of like asking me where they bought their cameras.

At this point I'm beginning to suspect that my caller isn't who she says she is. She's not a reporter. Reporters ask questions and all this lady wants is to give me a schoolin'. Tom Daschle's hands? Give me a break.

I'd never heard of The Root, but if the Post owns it they must have some sort of professional standards and whoever it is on the phone sounds more like an angry college student than a professional reporter. "Are you sure you're a reporter?" I ask.

She offers to have her editor confirm her identity. "Sure, let me speak to him." He's not available, but he can email me. I agree he should do so.

Finally, she starts asking questions:

"Are these Tom Dashle's hands?" "I doubt it." Why is she obsessed with Daschle?
"Was it just sloppy work?" "Not particularly."
"Am I ashamed the hands aren't black?" "Not particularly."

I try to explain to her that President Obama's skin isn't very dark, and it may have been easier to start with a white model's hands and darken them than to start with a black model's hands and lighten them.

The color of the hands on the standup are a fairly good match to the face, good enough that I'd been looking at the image for months and not noticed and none of the people we sold them to had noticed either. She even admits in her column that she'd taken a photograph of herself kissing the standup before she noticed either. (Not sure a reporter should admit to kissing the photograph of any politician. So much for the media not having a bias, I guess)

By this time, she's getting belligerent and not asking any questions and I'm convinced she's not who she says she is so I end the conversation.

About an hour later, I get email from an editor at confirming that the person who called me does indeed work for them. By this time I'd been able to find out more about the company. It's a black perspective blog with about eight or nine writers. There are a lot of black folks who live in DC so I'm assuming that's the connection with the Washington Post.

I call the telephone number listed on the editor's email. He doesn't answer but, Olopade does. (hmmmm...) At this point, I'm wondering if he sent me the email or if she did. I'm willing to believe she is who she says she is this time though, because her photograph on their website looks like she's in her mid-twenties and her other articles tell me she's not so much of a reporter as she is a commentator.

The editor, who may or may not have sent me the email, (I never got to speak to him) looks from his photograph to be about my age. I'm wondering if he's really going to publish her piece when it's finished because this lady's kinna crazy. Well, he does.

Not surprisingly, Olopade doesn't quote me correctly even once. It never seemed to me like she was taking notes like a reporter might. She's already made up her mind what to write, she's just looking for somebody to pin her assumptions on, other than herself. Fortunately she doesn't say I told her they were Tom Daschle's hands.

Well, that's the end of that, I think. Alexia puts's readership low enough that I don't see many people ever reading the story. That might have been the end of it, but she repeats a truncated version of the story on some sort of weird tag-team blog over at

Two things happen at this point. The websites that repost the Slate's RSS feed reprint the story and NPR picks up the story, doing a short piece on it in their Morning Edition broadcast. Fortunately, I'm not in any of those. They at least manage to get an interview with Steve Hoagland who works for Advanced Graphics and he does a pretty good job at explaining the situation.

While all this is going on, stock levels on the original White-Hands Obama Standup are getting really low. The original standup was made fairly hastily at the beginning of the campaign and Advanced Graphics intends to replace it with two new designs now that Obama won the election.

I try and make the case that they should continue offering the original white-hands version, because with all the press it's now a collector's item and might sell even better than before. They decline.

So, no, you can't get the original white-hands Obama standup from us. If you already have one you got from us, hold on to it because you can probably sell it on ebay for more than what you paid for it. You can get the new design for the Barack Obama Cardboard Standup here, and the second design Obama speaking from the presidential podium here.

As for Olopade, she may be a really good writer one day, but for the moment, not so much. Woodward and Bernstein have nothing to worry about from her.

For a brief moment there, I thought I was really being interviewed by the Washington Post, which wasn't really a life's goal of mine, but would have been pretty cool.

As to whether it was morally wrong to use a white model's hands on a Barack Obama standup, I really don't think so. If his face were much darker then maybe it would have been an issue, but the fact that none of my other customers noticed says something. Race is mostly a social construction. When it gets down to actual skin tone, the differences aren't always as great as you might thing.

I have to wonder if Olopade would have still kissed her Obama standup had she known he had a white man's body. Let's not tell her Obama's momma was white. That might ruin the whole experience for her.

Monday, January 19, 2009

The Impotence of of Proofreading

I need to get this guy to help with my blog posts.

Taylor Mali performing "the impotence of of proofreading"

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Sarah Palin Forever

Having proven themselves really poor losers over the past several years, the American Democratic Party now shows us how really bad they can be as winners.

Instead of doing a little happy dance when they came out of the convention season ahead of the Republicans and an almost certain shoe-in for the presidential election, they went into full attack mode, not at the Republican nominee, but his vice-presidential pick, Sarah Palin.

Completely unknown six months ago, Palin is now a part of our permanent cultural experience. Stories are coming in from all directions of the offers she's had for national television gigs after the election and she's twice now suggested she might be a candidate for president in 2012.

Had the Democrats reacted to Palin with a shrug as they should have instead of a full court press, the nation would have too. By now she'd be almost forgotten if it weren't for the almost pathological reaction Democrats had to her.

Having run a pretty clean campaign up to that point, Obama supporters will now go down in the history books as really a bunch of jerks for the way they attacked Palin instead of the fairly obvious choice, McCain, the actual Republican nominee.

Oh and let's not forget the pain we Democrat sympathisers felt when the possibility of the dream ticket hung in the balance, Obama announced Joe Biden of all people as his own choice for veep. Biden? Really? Biden?

It's not just the real Sarah Palin we'll have to put up with for the next twenty years, it's all the false Palins too. The Palin impersonators on SNL, YouTube, Political Cartoons, Halloween Costumes and more. The doctored photo of Sarah Palin in a Bikini and the real pictures of Sarah Palin as a beauty queen will hang around forever like painful mementos from that bad weekend trip to TiaJuana when you were in college.

So, thanks very much Democrats. Thanks to you we'll be living with this women for the rest of our natural lives: assholes.

Official Ted Lasso