Monday, January 7, 2008

60 seconds of silence.

OK, I think I am hopping on the bandwagon. It’s time for me to just accept that Hillary pisses me off for reasons I can’t entirely figure out, and that even though I like John Edwards, he’s not going to get the nomination. Not to mention that in an interview on NPR the morning after the Iowa caucuses he made some unnecessarily rude remark about Hillary that I didn’t think showed him in his best light. So, even though I think Barack Obama sometimes has the air of a petulant teenager about him, and even though his constant lambasting of the old guard personified by the Clintons to my mind overemphasizes their perceived irrelevance to a new world, nonetheless I, too, like the idea of something completely new in Washington. Now, I think it’s a little false to pretend that one person and his administration could waltz into Washington and shake things up so thoroughly; somehow do things so differently, that the lumbering, bureaucratic machine of Washington would defy nature and pop up, pixie-like, on the tips of its sprightly little toes, and embrace that change. However, it’s mighty intoxicating to imagine that it could happen, and Obama is the one candidate who I think represents at least that dreamy possibility.

Pundits, even Republican ones, are describing Obama as having the potential to be a Robert Kennedy-like figure. One article I read today described a “leading Republican strategist” as saying that Obama has the power to appeal even to a substantial number of Republicans. I wonder!? That’s heady stuff.

Anyway. Did I mention that having a baby is on occasion, usually in the middle of the night, an unpleasant state of affairs? Take last night, for example. Our lovely, four month old son, Eeyore, had some kind of bug up his butt that woke him up for a 90-minute crying jag at 10:30, then again at 3:15. What fun it is trying to decipher what could be wrong with a baby who shouldn’t be hungry, has a clean diaper, has no fever, has no stuffed up nose, and generally doesn’t appear to have anything wrong with him whatsoever! How delightful to stand over his crib for the sixth time in 10 minutes, feeling less sympathetic and more crazed with each pulling-back of the covers of my warm bed. How did he know to time his cries just to the moment I drifted back into sleep?

As R. and I stared at him, shell-shocked, he stared straight back at us and continued his dentist drill of waa-waa-waas. I imagined the thoughts circulating in his less-than-developed little brain:

Eeyore: “I hate you, mommy.”

Kate: “I can see that, dear.”

Eeyore: “It’s kind of funny how I can just lie here and scream and you have to figure out what to do about it.”

Kate: “It’s not at all funny, fruitcake; we worry about you. Are you sick? Does your tummy hurt? Isn’t there anything we can do to make you feel better?

Eeyore: “Wouldn’t you like to know?!”

Kate: “Yes, please! OK, let me pick you up and snuggle your little ear next to mine and maybe that will help.”

Eeyore: “Waa! Waa! Waa! Why can’t you figure it out!? You can’t do anything right! You’re a lousy mommy.”

Kate: “Jesus! Fine. Get back in your crib. Here’s your pacifier; I’m going back to bed.”

Eeyore: “Waa! Waa! Waa! Waa! Waa! WAAAAAAAAA!”

Eeyore’s Dad: “Why did we have this baby? Come here, Eeyore, let me hold you.”

Eeyore: “Coo… snuggle, snuggle, snuggle….snore.”

Kate: “Nice.”


Cindy said...

I'm with you that having a baby is often simply not hilarious. It was one of the hardest times of my life, exacerbated by worries that I was doing it all wrong, should have been happier, etc. I don't think I really started liking my daughter much until she was about six months old, and she was probably about a year before I felt I simply could not live without her. But at almost eight, she's absolutely my favorite person on the planet. Those babies are a trip.

Good luck catching some rest!

David James said...

For the past few days I've been struggling to understand and describe the nagging, unidentifiable reluctance I feel towards Hillary. I loved her husband when he was President (not that that matters, I guess) and am confident that she would do a fine job. Certainly better than the fuckwit we've had in place for the past 7 years.

Part of me is reluctant because I feel she's unelectable. Not because of misogyny, although it's still very alive today. Not because she wouldn't be able to capture the support form the Democrats. Not because her policies are out-of-line with core Democratic values.

The reason I don't want Hillary to get the Democratic nomination is that she would serve as a lightning rod and revise the right-wing freaks who are already frothing at the mouth, waiting for her to get to the general election. People absolutely *hate* her for a number of irrational reasons -- Bill did terrible things, she's a socialist, she's not trust worthy. I even read one article that said that people hated her because she gives Southern women a bad name ("Bring back Lady Bird Johnson" one article wrote).

She would absolutely motivate the Republican base which is currently debating which utterly flawed stooge will be their candidate: McCain (the elder statesmen who will pander to anyone to get elected; Romney (the crazy, flip-flopping Mormon); Guliani (the thrice-married, unqualified former mayor of NY); Thompson (the Reagan wanna-be who looks totally disinterested in debates); Paul (the Libertarian nut who at least opposes the war); and my personal favorite, Huckaby (the former Baptist minister that disavows Evolution and who, during his term as Governor of Arkansas was the subject of 14 ethics complaints and a volley of questions about his integrity).

And it saddens me to admit this, but I think that she would probably lose to at least half of those inferior candidates because she is so polarizing. To state it differently, if she can't persuade blue-blood Democrats like us to jump on board with both feet, how is she going to win the swing vote?

The only thing which would make it worse is if she named Lieberman as her running mate.

Kate said...

You know, you're right. I completely agree with you that her nomination would bring out the crazies in force because people do have this over-the-top hatred for her. I don't think she is going to get the nomination.

Broady said...

As someone who will most likely vote GOP, I concur that Hillary tends to unite folks in irrational hatred. Don't get me wrong-- I can't abide by the woman-- but there are a lot of people who probably know very little about her actual platform that would rather see Attila the Hun lead the country. This makes her a weak candidate (in my opinion).

On the Eyeore front: you have perfectly described my nightmare. I hope (without much hope) that my solution to ceaseless crying jags will be similar.