Saturday, October 16, 2004

Four reactions in Philadelphia to the Bush-Kerry debates
A little while earlier, coming in from Haverford, I'd witnessed another political ripple: An old lady, perched like a mocking bird on an aisle seat of the R5 local, had noticed my PW, with its mnemonic "Vote Kerry or Burn in Hell" headline.

She clapped me on the shoulder. "I've been a Republican all of my life," she chirped, her eyes bloodshot. "But this sumbitch is a liar!"

"Madame, that's no way to talk about the president," admonished a skinny fellow in blue-and-white seersucker, a briefcase balanced on his lap.

"Tush to you, sir!" she said. "Bush destroyed the GOP! Him and that gang of zealots--Rumsfeld, Cheney, Wolfowitz ... "

"Mentioning Wolfowitz makes you anti-Semitic as well as uninformed," Seersucker rejoined.

"Shush, tush!" the Democrat convert cried. She looked like she was going to hit him with her purse: "No weapons of mass destruction! No connection to Al Qaeda! Two hundred billion in taxpayers' money to prosecute the damned war! And a lot of it going to Cheney's Halliburton."

nonsense," Seersucker shot back. "Left-wing propaganda."

"Oh, shush, you fool! Kerry's as boring as you are. But at least he's relatively honest."

And we rolled into 30th Street.

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