Saturday, July 25, 2009

Brief Encounter

I was walking out of the Vienna Metro station yesterday, after a long day doing whatever it is government workers do. I was hot and tired, and eager to get to the parking garage so that I could climb into my vintage 1988 Suburban and make my way to the sanctuary of the Paco Command Center as quickly as possible.

On passing through the exit, though, I encountered a young woman holding a clipboard, obviously engaged in collecting signatures. She was a fresh-faced girl, probably a college student, who, in modest attire, long hair tied back with a ribbon, and steel-rimmed glasses, looked like a schoolmarm in the larval stage. She asked me sweetly, “Would you like to express your support for President Obama’s health care plan?” I didn’t, of course, but I figured it might be interesting to hear her explain it to me. Unfortunately, she was unable to cast any more light on the subject than the president himself in his press conference the other night; however, she held her clipboard out in such an abjectly pleading way - all doe-eyed innocence and rosy cheeks - that I agreed to sign her petition.

Now, there have been several times in my life when I’ve found myself in the position of having to provide someone with a fake name on extremely short notice. I don’t know why it is, but I never seem to be prepared for the contingency, and this occasion was no different. My mind went blank for a few seconds, so I fumbled with the pen to stall for time, and then bunged down the first name that popped into my head (absurdly, I’m afraid, “Algonquin J. Calhoun”).

Condemn me if you will, but, as I say, I was hot and tired and the girl was an extraordinarily cute little airhead; in weighing this act of perfidy, bear in mind that I have sent a score of emails to my (and quite possibly your) elected representatives under my real name, damning Obama’s health care plan and any elected official who would actually vote for it. On the other hand, if Obama Care, or something like it, ever becomes the law of the land, and the linchpin of the legislation’s successful passage turns out to have been the signature of one Algonquin J. Calhoun, then I pledge to fall on my sword.

16 comments:

JeffS said...

I don't see this as an issue, Paco, especially as how the Dhimmicrats lean towards voter fraud and intimidation (e.g., the New Black Panthers and ACORN). Indeed, if anyone actually checks the names on those petitions, I suspect that a significant portion of them are fake.

If I were so propositioned (so to speak), I might sign the petition as "Joseph Goebbels".

But I'm funny that way.

Mild Colonial Boy, Esq. said...

Ah, Paco, if only you had put John C. Calhoun on a petition that increased the power of the Federal Government.

smitty1e said...

These examples are too realistic.
I'd go for "Q. Wolfgang Imboodaga", if completely under duress (did she dimple-whip you?).
But I'd more likely give a gentle, cheerful explanation of how all this Progressive thought is turning the country towards being a banana republic.

Paco said...

Smitty: that was my first impulse, but this one was too moonstruck to be converted. Trust me.

RebeccaH said...

Ah, you men. I wish I'd been there. As might be surmised, I'm immune to the doe-eyed cuteness of girls (unless they are my granddaughters), and so I would have asked her to explain the details of the plan, and if she couldn't, I'd want to know why she's supporting a radical health care plan she knows nothing about. But then I'm a cranky old lady.

SwampWoman said...

Unh hunh. I'm with Rebecca. Miz Cute Thang would have gotten a lecture on independent thought because going through life trusting and stupid sucks.

mojo said...

Sherwood P. Dunwoody

Sometimes I throw in a "III", depending on the smug level.

Steve Burri said...

Jack Kevorkian would have been good.

richard mcenroe said...

Of course you realize, Paco, that by signing Calhoun's name you are now claiming several of WC Fields' longlost bank accounts from his vaudeville tour days. All you have to do is find them.

Minicapt said...

"Mike, from Canmore"
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F1GUoQpkr0s

Cheers

rian said...

Dear RebeccaH and SwampWoman, I understand where you're coming from but please remember that the male half of the species is at a little bit of a disadvantage in these situations. I trust that both of you have wisely manipulated that weakness at some points in your lives. We males are predictably hopeless, which this cute little college girl probably understood quite well. From a guys standpoint the fake signature was a huge victory of willpower!

Paco said...

Rian: I couldn't put it better myself!

Anonymous said...

T. Elmer Bugg, for the next time you can't resist a pretty girl. By the way, what does Mrs. Paco think of this weakness?

Retread

Paco said...

Mrs. Paco is well aware that, in acting the preux chevalier, I am simply trying to avoid giving offense to the young and impressionable.

Michael Lonie said...

Rebecca and Swanp Woman,
And if a college-age Tom Hanks lookalike had approached you with a similar request and smiled roguishly at you while asking, no doubt you would have asked him "... to explain the details of the plan, and if [he] couldn't, I'd want to know why [he's] supporting a radical health care plan she knows nothing about." Then refused to sign. Right?

I'm keeping the name Throckmorton T. Beauregard III, Colonel, CSAF, in reserve for a similar situation.

RebeccaH said...

Michael Lonie, et al, I understand the male's POV on this situation. You don't stay with the same man for 40+ years, and raise sons and help to raise grandsons without understanding. As for the young handsome man scenario, for women it's a little different. When you get to my age, you've already experienced what young men have to offer, you've detected (or been burned by) all the "lines" and tactics, and usually, you're pretty realistic about your own attractions. We women of the mature variety might enjoy the eye candy, but we're seldom influenced by it against our better judgment.

I make an exception for liberal female journalists of any age, of course.