The Bush and Kerry Battle Extravaganza will soon end. So here’s my take on things.

First, I was wrong in my prediction of the Mets winning the World Series. But I’m pumped how it all turned out. Congratulations Boston, and suck it, Yankees.

Now that I bring it up, the sports landscape is actually much more fun than its political counterpart, and most everyone from pee wees to pundits agree. So I propose we mix the two. Thousands more people would vote if we encourage them to throw tailgate parties outside the voting booths and replace pin-on buttons with giant foam fingers. Cheerleaders, taunting, $12 nachos, you name it. But sorry, folks…beer sales are cut off the night before Election Day, for safety’s sake. So you better vote early, Kennedy clan.

Americans truly love competition, which may explain why polling is so popular. Polls basically exist so we can see what other people think. Correct me if I’m wrong, but there isn’t a voting contingent made up of sixth graders. Is peer pressure necessary? Not really, and yet polls are more rampant than computer spyware.

I saw a poll last week that simply said a new poll was coming soon (margin of error: sooner or later). I believe that people who participate are professional, full-time poll takers. Honestly, I’ve never met anyone who has taken part in a Gallup questionnaire. I bet these folks are just the last remaining 500 souls who have yet to sign themselves up for the national “do-not-call” list. Do we really want to trust the opinions of those lazy individuals?

If I were polled, I would certainly give my opinions. As stated in my previous column, I don’t want to sound too soap-boxy, so I’ll try to keep it light-hearted.

First of all, I don’t care what 1% of the people say…it’s a two-man race. Having Ralph Nader on the ballot is like putting your new baby’s name on the answering machine. Sure, technically he lives there, but come on…nobody is calling for him…well, not unless they feel a national duty to call and they don’t like either parent.

Nader, who I call “Rudy with a lazy eye”, wasn’t even invited to the debates, which should have been scheduled around the baseball playoffs. As a true American, I was glued to the October classic. I tried to record the debates to watch later, but Tivo didn’t recognize the command I gave it: “Record Bullshit”. By the third debate, it finally accepted that entry, but all I got was a bunch of commercials featuring happy AOL customers (those people are extremely good actors).

By the way, John Kerry is a big Red Sox fan. But that’s only because he need not worry about New York. Finding a Bush supporter in the Big Apple is like finding a surplus of the flu vaccine at a nursing home…impossible. If Johnny Panderer needed the votes, however, he would surely don a Yankees jersey and claim to have been best friends with Billy Martin. Of course Georgie Bush used to own the Texas Rangers and inexplicably traded away Sammy Sosa. I’m starting to think that the annoying cartoon “Scooter” ball on Fox knows more about baseball than these guys. That ball, for those who may not know, appears from time to time to explain numerous aspects of the game.

Again, if we mix politics and athletics, we could just as easily implement a cartoon bald eagle during the debates. It would show up after each answer and say something like, “That spin is brought to you by Maytag” or “Knowing the questions in advance and still dodging the issue is a strategy often referred to as the ‘Washington rope-a-dope’.” Of course if such an idea were ever employed, politicians may try to get another animated figure to feed them the best answers. Kind of like a Manchurian Candidate managed by that Microsoft paper clip guy who pops up with blinking eyebrows. “Blink-blink. Are you debating? Well, here’s the party line…blink-blink.”

I did see footage of the first debate. President Bush, scowling on occasion, was apparently in disbelief at some of Kerry’s comments, and he could do nothing in reply except grimace. If his advisors were in touch with the young voters of today, he would have been better received with a quick, “Oh-no-he-didn’t!” (Note: the second d in “didn’t” is not to be pronounced. Correctly, it is “di’n’t”. I researched this at the mall. Note #2: nothing is more annoying than teenagers on cell phones.)

It is true that the candidates not only demanded to know the questions beforehand, but also insisted upon the surrounding environment. With Kerry and Edwards being trial lawyers, I expected to hear one of them voice an objection: “My statement regarding impending globalization was given when the room was a steamy 74 degrees, not the required 70. Move to strike from the record.” And their request would be accepted, because Americans love John Grisham novels and because Johnny Edwards, lest we forget, is the son of mill workers, which isn’t important but he continually brings it up as a reminder that he wasn’t always an ambulance chaser.

My final thought on the debates is about the moderators. Because I didn’t watch, I cannot make an informed opinion. I will list, however, some good alternate moderators. Carrot Top the prop comic could lead the event using a clock timer attached to a snooze bar…a very handy amenity for when the rhetoric becomes way too tiring. Or how about Alex Trebek? He could reverse the format and give answers first, like on Jeopardy.

Alex: “Mr. President…Iraqis yearn for freedom, and may God bless America.”
Bush: “What is…my reply to everything from health care to employment rates?”
Alex: “Mr. Edwards…my father was a hard-working mill worker with honest values.”
Edwards: “Ditto to what Bush just said.”

What about the issues? We all know the important ones, such as Iraq, the economy, and the fight against baldness, but what about the dramatic ones? We live in a country in which more people recognize Montel Williams than Colin Powell, so it doesn’t surprise me how minor topics make major headlines. Like Teresa Heinz Kerry saying “shove it” or Dick Grey Poupon Cheney having a lesbian daughter. First of all, I admire Kerry’s wife because not only does she speak her mind, but she also seems to look drunk all the time. The disinterested, eyes-half-shut look may soon be all the rage. As for the Vice President, I think his child is an asset. With her in their corner, Republicans can more affectively go after the gay vote, and they have a much better chance of winning the Washington D.C. co-ed softball tournament. I’m just sayin’.

So who will win the biggest election in the past four years? It’s way too close to tell, but if my ideas were ever enacted, it sure would be a lot more fun to watch.

If you have a problem with what I have written here…relax. This column’s margin-of-error is plus/minus…hey, baseball highlights are on ESPN.

Categories: Columns