Tuesday, June 17, 2008
Famous for DC
While I didn't grow up blowing rails with Brian Austin Green and Mark-Paul Gosselaar in a bathroom stall everyday at Beverly Hills High, I can imagine how, if you did, that just might be part of your daily routine--living. loving, being in LA.
Instead, I grew up in DC, and DC is like Hollywood, but instead of the silicon-breasted and cranially empty, we have the poorly tailored and terminally wonkish. As such, our celebrity sightings aren't quite as exciting. For instance, I once saw Colin Powell buying produce at the grocery store. Another time, I waited for the Metro with David Broder. These things kind of just happen, and when they do, you think about telling someone, but then, you sort of lose momentum. Yeah, whoah, David Broder waits for the Metro--he's just like me. (Except he's even older and more decrepit than you'd think.)
Part of the problem with seeing famous-for-DC types is that in the end, you never catch them doing anything incongruous, anything mundane, at least, compared to what they would be doing otherwise. When Colin Powell isn't buying groceries, he's sitting at a desk, reading intelligence prepared by some middling hack who can't speak Arabic and probably doesn't know the difference between a Sunni and a Shia. Big whoop. But if you see Brian Austin Green blowing rails in the bathroom--or, better yet--if you're doing it with him, you're participating in the devil-may-care, party-all-the-time lifestyle of hip young Hollywood. In a way, you've kind of made it.
Or if you see Mark Wahlberg at Jamba Juice, you're all like, whoah, Mark Wahlberg doesn't just blow rails in his Calvin Kleins at the Playboy Mansion. He's. Just. Like. Me. He's totally into the Aloha Pineapple too.
Anyway, this is all a roundabout way of saying that while I've grown accustomed to being disinterested in the political and media types who traverse my old burg, never, never ever, did I expect Tim Russert's corpse--okay, just his casket--to be put on display in my old school cafeteria. His second to last resting place, the somber site of his public mourning, is the same black-wood-paneled room a sadistic Mr. Kennedy once made me eat apple pie out of the trash can. That learned me good for getting up out of my seat without asking permission!
God speed you Tim Russert! I don't know why our self-obsessed media vortex is covering your death like you were Nelson Mandela, but still, you seemed like a nice guy. I hope the beef stew in heaven tastes better than the kind Dolly and Mr. Dunne used to make.