“It should be a relatively painless and quick recovery.” This now ranks with “That will make you go blind,” “it’s not you, it’s me,” and “I did not have sexual relations with that woman, Monica Lewinsky,” as one of the biggest lies I’ve ever heard. I’m beginning to think the Doctor left a gerbil habitrail in my lower torso.
My back hurts so much I’m thinking of having it removed. I’ve long since run out of painkillers, though I still from time to time shove my tongue in the bottle — which makes me look like I’ve got a teeny weeny horse feedbag on my face. The fair Jessica is leaving town for eight days (she’s going to Switzerland on the same trip I went on last year) and I fear that she will return to find me (after a whole week lacking her assistance) crawling on the floor in search of tubers and grubs under my couch (you’d be amazed at what can grow in soil composed entirely from old issues of Juggs
and The New Criterion
, and pizza crusts).
I am so far behind in NRO paperwork — especially, paying some contributors — that some writers have started coming to my house and just taking stuff. The other day I caught Steve Hayes walking out with my coffee maker and my commemorative Spock plate from the Franklin Mint. And then just this morning I learned that once again I’m not getting a MacArthur “Genius Grant.” When will my contribution ever be recognized!? Meanwhile I had to file my quarterly estimated income taxes, and I was never good dealing with fractions that small. Anyway, what I am trying to say is that I am not operating at a hundred percent and I’m falling ever further behind.
So, I want to enlist your help. I don’t want to write a whole column thingy today. You know with words and ideas in the right order and all that stuff. Instead, I want to offer an idea and then rely on you guys to send me the evidence I need to make my case.
If you want serious words and stuff like that from me you could read
- The piece I wrote yesterday about abortion and the death penalty;
- My syndicated column on the death penalty… though read it soon, because this link will change soon to some other columnist [Link Defunct];
- My impassioned denunciation of the anti-hound-dog media bias; or
- you could prowl the archives for this column; or
- you could just sit there in your cubicle playing Minesweeper.
There are many ways you can help me, first and foremost by sending cash, painkillers, and Tito Puente albums. But if that’s out of the question you can help me with an idea I’m working on.
On Monday, I suggested that Vice President Gore might be an alien impersonating a human being. No I don’t mean like Rod Stewart. I mean that Gore might actually be an extra-terrestrial. Maybe it’s because I’m sucking down drain cleaner to drown out the pain in my lower back and the attendant fever is making me delusional, but I think I’m on to something.
Think about it. So many intelligent people seem to be at a loss when it comes to explaining what makes Gore tick. Maybe it’s because the real answer lies outside the realm of what we believe to be possible? For centuries, brilliant astronomers, navigators, and theologians could not help but force all new data into their Aristotelian worldview.
Even when Galileo saw that the sun and stars seemed to be stationary while the earth moved he had to propose his theories as purely hypothetical (though that was more the Church’s idea than his).
More to the point, recall the Saturday Night Live skit and movie, The Coneheads. Beldar (Dan Aykroyd) and Co. had huge, two-foot-high foreheads; drank beer out of the six pack, without removing the plastic bindings; and made love by throwing little hula hoops on each other’s heads. And yet, pretty much everyone was willing to accept their assertion: “We are from France.”
When you think about it, a huge percentage of science fiction and popular culture is about extra-terrestrials who can slip in amongst us virtually unnoticed: Invasion of the Body Snatchers, Mork and Mindy, Men in Black, They Live, Third Rock from the Sun, etc.
(Pop culture fanatics: Please do not accuse me of deliberately snubbing or being ignorant of other movies of this genre. I am not leaving out Suburban Commando, out of spite or because I’m unacquainted with this, Hulk Hogan’s second-best film. Oh and while I am talking to you intra-parentheses, please don’t tell me how the original Body Snatchers was a metaphor for anti-Communist hysteria. I’ve been hearing that for years from pencil-necked liberals who think it is a brilliant bit of anti-McCarthy satire until I point out to them that the aliens — like the %$^&%# Commies — actually existed. So the paranoiacs were right).
Perhaps, we are trying to tell ourselves something? Perhaps, like some great Jungian expression of our collective subconscious, we are trying to make ourselves see what we all know is going on: We are not alone. Indeed, when you actually look at some of the people on, say, the #42 bus in Washington, D.C., or when you think about the fact that all of these picture-framing and Oriental-rug stores stay in business despite the fact that they never have customers, it all starts to come together.
We know from the sci-fi oeuvre (French for “stuff”) that there are several ways to identify a human impersonator. For example, according to John Carpenter’s remake of The Thing, we could set the Vice President’s blood on fire and see if runs away. But the Secret Service frowns on such things, and if we were wrong, it would be a pretty high-profile mistake.
Another way is to see if in his private moments the Veep eats live rats — as the visitors did in V. Again, hard to get this kind of access (or to keep Carville from hoarding the little critters). No, the safest bet is to just pay attention to what the man says and does.
And that’s where you guys come in. I want to start cataloguing evidence that the Vice President of the United States and the putative nominee of the Democratic Party, is, in fact, a honky from another planet. Anytime you see Gore dance like his human suit is malfunctioning or if you hear him saying things that don’t quite sound like what a human would say, I want you to send me the citation.
But first, to make the job easier, I’ll give you some pointers.
The first sign that someone is an alien visitor is if they behave like one, asking a lot of strange questions and looking at the world from an off-worldly perspective.
There are few better Gore impersonations than that of Jeff Bridges in Star Man. In the film, Bridges adopts a jerky, deliberate body language that, while a bit more endearing than Gore’s, is still eerily similar. The aliens in the recently released Galaxy Quest also have a very Gore-like range of motion. The reason for this probably has to do with their problems getting comfortable in their human suit or accommodating the new sensory input. Anyone who has seen Al Gore high-five someone, or dance, or pump his fist in the air, knows exactly what I’m talking about.
Which leads to the fact that sometimes human impersonators let slip certain observations of statements that hint at their real identity. For example, Kirsten Johnson in 3rd Rock from the Sun (a show I hate) is making meatloaf and then suddenly shrieks, “”I have dead cow on my hands!” Indeed, extreme literalism — usually at the expense of everyday expressions — is a key sign of human impersonation, like when Beldar Conehead says, “Can I have fifty-five words with you?”
As I mentioned on Monday, what first tipped me off was when Gore said, “just as having two eyes gives you depth perception…” as if we all talk about our eyes that way. Since then, the clues have been flooding in.
Gore held a series of conferences on the metaphor at the White House, as if that is something a normal human would want to discuss. His book brims with observations about how our “planet” is dysfunctional. His pet issue is having an Earth Channel which shows the planet from outer space. Perhaps this is the view he grew up with?
Rick Brookhiser wrote a piece for NR a while back which had a passage about Gore visiting a school. “When [Gore] smooches small children,” Brookhiser writes, “he actually picks them up. (When a kid in New Hampshire started squalling at this close encounter, he murmured reassuringly, ‘I’m not too scary.’)”
“Close encounter”? “I’m not too scary.” Maybe children can see through the disguise. Maybe Brookhiser can. Who knows?
Anyway, I’m looking for more evidence. Send me what you can.
The truth is out there.