Pretend presidential run must be fun

By Kevin Wilson: CNJ staff writer

I’m in a fortunate position where I can expend 500 to 600 words reflecting on whatever I want. Sometimes, a thought of mine simply isn’t enough to fill that word amount. So here’s a bunch of thoughts worth sharing but not worth their own column:

• If somebody lures you into a talk about the 2008 presidential campaign and you want a quick way out, look at your watch, pause a few seconds and say, “Well, my watch tells me that party conventions are still 16 months away, and I’m betting the energy we’d spend talking about them now would take away from something that would actually help this country.” It works even if you don’t have a watch.

• If you still want to talk elections, though, the best 2008 election joke of the week comes from Comedy Central’s Stephen Colbert: “Tom Vilsack is withdrawing his candidacy for president. In other news, Tom Vilsack was running for president.”

• It’s been a week since we found out that Patriots quarterback Tom Brady is the father of model Bridget Moynahan’s baby. I’m kind of shocked I’m the only person who’s made a joke about how Brady needs more protection.

• I read Monday that Rev. Al Sharpton wants a DNA test to find out if he’s related to the late Sen. Strom Thurmond, a former segregationist. The question I haven’t answered is, “What other story involving Washington figures would approach this level of insanity?” But then again, reality’s pretty strange. Consider our current president successfully ran as a Washington outsider even though his grandfather had been a senator and his dad had been head of the CIA, vice president and president.

• As Al Gore’s shown during Saturday Night Live and during his comic Oscar acceptance speech, it’s more fun to pretend you’re president and to pretend you’re running for president than actually doing those things.

• I enjoyed the acceptance speeches from Gore, Forest Whitaker and Martin Scorsese, and the rest of the Oscars was pure exhilaration. By that, I mean, “enough free time to wash dishes, fold laundry, organize my DVD collection and catch up on a week’s worth of e-mail.”

• There’s something kind of satisfying about owning the DVD of a movie, then seeing it win an Academy Award. It says you’re ahead of the curve. Of course, any joy is instantly wiped out the second the studio releases an Academy Awards Special Edition DVD of that movie, with an hour of extra features.

• Whenever I hear somebody talk about how America should bomb a particular country “back into the stone age,” I always wonder what the caveman from the Geico commercials would think.

• During the holidays, I was shopping at a mall in Montana and came across a discount bookstore. I found a hardcover version of John Feinstein’s “The Punch,” and figured it was worth the $1.99 price to have a hardcover copy, even though I owned the paperback. The clerk gave me my penny back and my receipt, which said, “No refunds.” It made me wonder, who would try to return a $2 book? The answer, of course, is the same person who buys a $2 book and waits for the receipt.

Kevin Wilson is a columnist for Freedom Newspapers of New Mexico. He can be reached at 763-3431, ext. 313, or by e-mail: