Ya-low. Hey, what’s happening? Hold on a minute while I move into another room. The Missus is watching “Judge Judy” and, well, let’s just say that Bluetooth headphones, um, make certain aspects of domestic life infinitely more tolerable.

Problem is, these don’t cancel out every other sound, like for instance, some idiot telling a fake judge in a fake TV courtroom that the $3,000 he got from his cousin was a gift when the cousin has text messages showing the guy’s promise to pay it back.

Good grief.

Huh? No, wiseguy, I don’t wear the headphones all the time. If only, right? Wait, that’s off the record. Yeah, yeah, I know the rules. You hafta say that BEFORE speaking. I did learn a few of the more salient rules of the road during my decades in what was once was called journalism.

Journalism rules? Year, you’re right. That has become a bit of an oxymoron, hasn’t it? No, an oxymoron isn’t a dumbass tryin’ to get whiter whites and brighter brights on laundry day. That was lame, Dude.

So what’s up? Yes, I absolutely was tempted to go “Wazzzz-zahp Bro!” Of course it’s dated and grating. That’s the whole point, ain’t it? Anyway, to answer your question, not a whole hellova lot. You? The last one just started her freshman year in college? Holy crap! You are old. And soon to be poor. I mean, poor-er.

Yeah, I know. As soon as they become interesting, they move out and take all their electronic gear with ‘em. Except for those who return. We turned our son’s room into a guest room, a description that still gets him all bent out of shape, even though he’s married, has two kids and lives five hours away.

You’ve got one more parent’s weekend ahead of ya this month, right? Oh, you don’t hafta tell me. From sophomore year on, every visit is a parents’ weekend, with activities limited to taking them shopping and then splurging for dinner for them and their whole friggin’ posse.

Cha-ching, right?

No, of course it’s fun, especially seeing your pride and joy and all those other kids on their very best behavior. Oh, absolutely. There’s no doubt in my mind that on that Sunday night somebody’s dorm room is packed with kids hefting and sloshing red party cups full of cheap beer ‘neath a “They’re Finally Gone!” banner.

Oh, woe to those with 8 a.m. Monday classes.

Huh? The election? What election? THAT one is more than a year away, Dude. Political years are like dog years. You know how much can happen between now and then? Not that it matters. I gotta believe that pro-Trump and anti-Trump voters made up their minds long ago. We can look forward to a year’s worth of political drama. Sound and fury signifying nothing.

What’s that from? Um, let me think… It was from… Hmmmm…

Wait, I got it! “Macbeth.”

Huh? Of course I remembered. What, do you think I Googled it while stalling for time?

You think me that slick that I’d…

Fine. You got me. I throw meself on the mercy of the court. Thought it was Macbeth, but wanted to be sure before YOU looked it up and lorded it over me.

Oh, and thanks for the reminder. I was indeed an English major, which provided job opportunities equal in number to those currently trained in building and repairing Conestoga wagons.

Right, right. “This little baby here belonged to a family who left Council Bluffs, Iowa but only went as far as Scottsbluff, Nebraska. Dysentery? Cholera? Nooooo, they just liked the town so much they decided against goin’ all the way to Oregon. Now, she’s priced to sell!”

What? Sure, I coulda been “The Wolf of Dirt Street.” Hey, look down by that crick. Those girls just exposed their ankles! Hot damn!

No, I didn’t watch the Democratic debate. Why? It’s like tuning in to a ball game during spring training. Instead of “Who’s Who” you get “Who’s That?” 

You know the smart money’s on Joe Biden, although Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren can’t be counted out. Then again, the so-called smart money was on Hillary three years ago, wasn’t it?

Notice how media outlets from Portland, Oregon to Portland, Maine are obsessed with who “wins” these ridiculously early debates?  Can’t blame ‘em, really, since other than the odd outrageous quote, that’s the only news value there. I mean, how many different ways can you say “Trump sucks” and “I can stop climate change, racial and gender discrimination and provide gun control and healthcare to all during my first 36 minutes in office.”

It all boils down to this: Have we as a people and as a country progressed to the point where the time is finally right to take that big, bold step beyond past presidential political orthodoxy, demonstrating to the body politic and indeed the entire world that we can indeed elect… a guy named Beto.

Trump would have a field day with that. Can you imagine the tweets?

“Betojuice, Betojuice, Betojuice.”

No, wait! 

Beto, Beto, BoBeto banana fanna Mo Meto, Me My Mo-Meto, Beto!

Ok, can’t argue with you there. I am more than just a bid jaded. But “realistic” is a more apt description, don’t you think?  

You don’t. Well fine. Anyway, my point is that if one-one thousandth of a hundredth percent of a tenth of one percent of the promises made by presidential candidates ever came to pass, we’d be living in the freakin’ Emerald City:

We get up at 12 
and start each day at one.
Take an hour for lunch 
and then at two we’re done.
Jolly good fun!

That’s your average workday, right? I mean, you are an attorney.

What? Now that was unkind. You kiss your children with that mouth?

Lawyer jokes? You’re actually asking me? Ah, to get it over with as soon as possible. Can’t argue your logic there. 

Ok, here’s one: What do an apple and an attorney have in common?

They both look good hanging from a tree!

I said, they both look good hanging from a tree!

Hello? You still there? 

What? Don’t blame me, counselor. You asked, remember? But in so doing, you failed to qualify said request, i.e. whether said joke was to be great or a groaner. As an officer of the court, you of all people should…

You know, I just realized that the talking apple trees along the Yellow Brick Road must have been attorneys! They were confrontational and argumentative and…

Yeah, I know. I’m making myself wince. I’ll let you go get a good night’s sleep so you’re bright and fresh in the morning, ready to meet the challenge of heartlessly dispossessing widows and orphans.  

Yeah, you too.

One of these days we’ve got to…

Oh, dear lord! Some guy wants $5,000 for a car damaged in an accident by a guy with no insurance, even though the Kelley Blue Book value is only $1,200.

What’s wrong with you, you idiot! You think someone’s gonna start peeling off hundred-dollar bills just on your say so? Where do they find these people? It really makes you wonder if…



East End Beacon
The East End Beacon is your guide to social and environmental issues, arts & culture on the East End of Long Island.

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