Did you know that no presidential couple ever “wanted each other” until the coming of The One and his Michelle? Well Stacy Schiff of New York Magazine knows, blurting out like a star-struck 13-year-old at a Jonas Brothers concert the question, “How long has it been since a First Couple seemed to want each other?” What about George W. and Laura’s love? Must have all been a head fake. H.W. Bush and Barbara, it’s all a sham I tell you. Nancy and Ron? Fuggedabout it. Bill and Hillary… OK, you might have something there. None of the rest really care about each other who can doubt? Not Schiff, anyway. No, as far as Schiff is concerned, love’s been reinvented by Michelle and her beau, The One.
It’s either a sole example of love in the Oval office… or it’s just another appalling exercise in Old Media sycophancy that takes slobbering devotion to a new level. I guess this is what passes for “reporting” these days, but it still seems like maudlin hero worship to me. It causes one to wonder what crackerjack box Schiff found her mind reading cap in to enable her to learn that no other presidential couple “want each other”? Still, Schiff has divined the fact for us like a late-night informercial psychic, nonetheless.
Schiff starts out at a gallop in a first paragraph stuffed with more hyperbole and kitsch than the worst teen idol interview you’ve ever seen.
Look, Ma, no hands! Only one cool forehead and some extra-strength hairspray touch, and yet everything combusts in this Inauguration Night photo. Not since Doris Day and Rock Hudson split a pair of pajamas–also under intoxicating circumstances, if not in a freight elevator–has there been such chemistry in a shared outfit. Admit it, if you were one of the Secret Service guys, you’d find your BlackBerry suddenly compelling too. And if you’re a woman, you want what she’s having. Here is the answer to Freud’s question; the black tie is optional.
One can almost hear Schiff giggle like a school girl in this paragraph. I wonder how many “likes” and “ya knows” her editor had to remove from this thing before it went to press? I mean, was that even in English? It sounds more like TEENglish. For a grown women to write like this is surreal. Sadly it gets no more newsworthy than that, heck it doesn’t even get any deeper than a teaspoon.
Get this slosh about Michelle:
You could be uncharitable: She outranked and outearned him. And after she had gamely explained the concept of billable hours, he went on to sabotage her career, introduce her to single motherhood, and shrink her salary. Under the circumstances, the least Obama can do is offer his wife his jacket. It’s been a long time, after all, since anyone sat on her stoop and aspired to be First Lady. Reese Witherspoon aside, no one goes to Harvard Law to be reduced to her wardrobe. The reason to get a fancy education is to avoid having to fuss about the fancy dress.
It only lacks the phrase “smartest woman in the world” to seal the deal for the worst level of thralldom ever.
And now for the finale that contains more sugar than your kid’s favorite breakfast cereal.
But we’re in uncharted territory here. The gesture is sweetly old-fashioned, redolent of letter sweaters, gallantry, and Cary Grant. The girl is spicy and newfangled. She’s ushering us around a social corner as much as a political one. Professional rivals, Rock and Doris leaped out of bed in those pj’s the year Obama was born; only now are we discovering what a functioning marriage between equals actually looks like. Michelle Obama promises to resolve the mystery Mrs. Spitzer, Mrs. Edwards, and Mrs. McCain left us helplessly to contemplate: What purpose does the political wife serve if she is neither accessory nor casualty? After decades of fake financials and fictitious balance sheets, WMDs that weren’t there and detention centers that were, our new First Lady is the genuine article. She has a real body–arms! Legs! Curves! And she has a real marriage. Here are two people whose bodies speak as eloquently as their words, who hold each other up, who between them get the temperature just right.
I don’t think we are into any “uncharted territory” at all, here. After all, Schiff is wallowing in the same sold-out, love-struck sycophancy as the rest of her ilk. And with a few spasms of Bush Derangement Syndrome added as garnish, this silly little filly has all the bases covered. How she squeezed in a spurious connection between a first lady being a “genuine article” and “WMDs that weren’t there and detention centers that were” is gymnastics of the non-sequitur that boggles the mind.
Me thinks Ms Schiff is trying out for a starring spot on the front page of the DailyKos with saccharine syrup like this. But one thing it isn’t and that’s writing.
Finally, one wonders why after two months Schiff is all of a sudden revisiting the presumably affecting image of Barack’s suit coat around Michelle’s shoulders on inaugural day? Could it be that Obama is just starting to see some negative press and Schiff is trying to bring some TheOneness back to The One? There really doesn’t seem to be any compelling reason for this groveling, lapdogesque article. This months old photo isn’t anything new, after all.
So, what gives? Why this slobberfest now over a two months old photo? Actually, why ever is a better question.
(Photo: Courtesy of White House Photo/Pete Souza)