Recently, I received a piece of advice in response to my take on Obama, the comic, appearing at the Washington Correspondent's Dinner. Someone helpfully suggested that I dunk my head in a pool of cold water in the hope of a revival of my sense of humor. Sounded like a great idea -- the pool in my back yard was perfect for following that advice.
Alas, as refreshing as the experience proved to be, it did nothing to shift my opinion of Obama's stand-up performance at the Correspondent's Dinner a few nights ago. I repeat, Not Funny.
Maybe I was missing a step, the way that one missing ingredient in a forwarded recipe can astonishingly alter a finished product. For instance, maybe my head and my ass should have been simultaneously dipped into the pool?
I know for sure I'm missing something. Is it, after all, my sense of humor? Has it dried totally up, like turd pellets crumbled and blown into microscopic dust in the desert air of my Los Angeles neighborhood?
Surely if Bill Maher thought Obama's comic material was fantastic, as reported in other words by the brilliant Arianna Huffington, something in me is (seriously) amiss. I love Arianna, and she is optimistic and generous toward the President's performance. Is loss of humor an underreported chemical side effect in my drinking water? Wherever my humor is, it is tragically N/A.
Instead, I am left to wonder, humorlessly, how we got to be in this American place of demanding the social defense of "lightening everything up" in our responses to reality. This defense is terrific news, by the way, for criminals everywhere and for corrupt politicians. Americans can today be counted on to lighten up the bold and unbeautiful cable news-delivered, nefarious deeds of just about anyone. In fact, if there is a way to mock something or strip away any serious meaning from say, the upcoming oil drillings or spillage or middle class looting by another Goldman Sachs, for example, then "Yes, We Can"!
We'll always have Tiger Woods, or we can turn to Obama's recent co-host Jay Leno who, coming off a devastating loss in popularity numbers to winner Conan O'Brien, is now losing in comedy polls to our own President. The Hilarious Comedy Chops of Obama is the freshly insisted-upon remake of the Emperor's New Clothes, brought to us this time via the Red-Carpeted Correspondent's Dinner.
In a time when show business pros and politicians are rated and reviewed side-by-side and perform inter-changeably, there's only one thing to do, for heaven's sake: