Did you watch the memorial service in Tucson last night? It sure seemed to me to be a cavalcade of statemanship -- presidents of nations and universities and student bodies, governors new and old, political figures on the left and right, cabinet officials and interns, all coming together to put a human face on the fallen, and give heroes at all levels a chance to bask in the gratitude of a thankful nation. What a fortunate thing it is, to see such lives blaze so gloriously in a time of darkness.
At least, that's what normal humans may have taken away from the experience. If you were a member of the 24-hour cable teevee media, all that can be said about the Way We Mourn Now is that it was such an awful inconvenience! Oh, my stars and garters! Did hearing about the way this tragedy affected so many people have to take so long? Because there were other speeches at other times by other people that were much shorter. How dare this remembrance tax our attention spans in this manner!
THIS JUST IN: ANDERSON COOPER IS GETTING SOME TWEETS TO READ TO AMERICA. Now, 140 characters: that we can handle! Why couldn't Obama have just said, "We are up in yr hearts, having teh sadz! #kanyeshrug #picturesofkittens."
But, wow, since you asked the cable teevee pundits to review the memorial service in "rapid-response" fashion -- you remember asking the cable teevee pundits to do that, right? -- let them mansplain to you at length about how the moment "transformed a presidency," and affected all of the horse-race politics that we will be talking about for the next two years! Didn't we just get through bitching about how the service went on and on and on and on, and how Obama demanded a half-hour of our time? JESUS! DOES HE WANT TO BECOME "OVEREXPOSED" AGAIN? Anyway, blah-dee-blah-dee-blah-dee-blah, I have about an hour of stuff to say about how these dead people figure into my deep thoughts about politics.
Tell me, is any human experience truly complete without David Gergen expounding on Barack Obama's "campaign mojo?" David Gergen doesn't think so!
Anyway, here is a montage of the many media people who reminded America that Top Chef was on last night, and sent them fleeing in that direction. (Their punditry probably worked in the studio, just not with a national audience.)
[Video produced by Ben Craw.]