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What the . . . Get Out the Vote Campaign?

October 19, 2012

I’m Mayor McCheese and I approved this message.

What the…Friday? is a weekly Friday feature in which I resuscitate a video relic from the swampy pits of Pop Culture Wasteland.

Today:  What the Get Out the Vote Campaign?

I always promised myself I wouldn’t use my blog as a political platform, you know, to push a political agenda.

Today, I have flip-flopped.

And today’s agenda is apathy.

No, I’m kidding.

No, really.  I am.

Yes, our forefathers just rolled over in their graves.  Yes, they just tried to punch me in the face.  Yes, George Washington just threw his wooden teeth at me.

But you’ll see what I mean in a minute when I present today’s WTF? video.  Which is my all-time favorite Election Day chant.

Politics really don’t belong on my blog.  My blog is about childhood and about growing up in the 70s and 80s.  And the closest I ever got to politics as a kid was when Jimmy Carter did a pop-in to see my town’s tornado wreckage.

Oh, I didn’t get to meet him or anything.  Are you kidding?  My parents are Republicans.

I’m Socks Clinton and I approved this message.

By college, I think the President’s name was Bill Clinton.  I think his cat’s name was Socks.  I think I voted to get a free t-shirt.

But then, right out of college, I took my bright eyes and bushy tail to my State Legislature and began working for a young up-and-comer.  Then I helped run his campaign for State Attorney General.  And then I went to a lot of fish fries.  And parades.  And backyard barbecues.  And stuffed a lot of envelopes.  And got a lot of paper-cuts.   And later got a lot of college interns to stuff a lot of envelopes so that they would get the paper-cuts.   And then I got to go hang out in that Attorney General’s office for a while.  And then I got to write his speeches and plan his events and take high school students to the State Penitentiary to scare them straight.  And set up meth presentations using meth addicts’ before and after photos . . .

. . . that looked kind of like this.

And then I got bored and moved on.

But it was pretty fun.  The politics stuff.

Although, what I remember all too well is that I didn’t care a hoot about the agenda I was pushing.  I thought it sucked, in fact.  But I’d be damned if I wanted the Other Side to win!  Damned!

Never mind that the Other Side said some pretty smart stuff.  Never mind that the Other Side threw much better fundraising parties.  Never mind because they were the Other Side.  They were rat-faced bastards.  And I wanted to push those rat-faces into the mud.

After I quit my job, I switched to the Other Side.  For the better fundraising parties?  Well, yes and no.

I’m a rat-faced bastard and I approved this message.

You know that whole thing where if you know a person who worked in a restaurant and that person no longer wants to eat at that restaurant, you should probably also avoid eating at that restaurant?

Yeah, well I saw the Governor put rotten mayonnaise on a customer’s sandwich.  And then pick his scabs before tossing the salad.

But you know what?  It just doesn’t matter.  The whole My Side and Other Side thing.  The whole I’m Right and You’re Wrong.  It just doesn’t matter.

Doesn’t it feel good to say that?

It just doesn’t matter!

Wonderful.

It just doesn’t matter!

That’s right!  Say it louder now!

It just doesn’t matter!

Again!

It just doesn’t matter!

Ah, sweet relief.

But, wait, don’t misunderstand me here.  No, no!  Calm down for a moment.  Put the chairs back on the floor.

Vote, vote, vote!  You see, you cannot participate in my Election Day It just doesn’t matter! chant unless you have voted.

I cannot stress this more.

Vote!  Even if you are on the Other Side.  Even if you are a rat-faced bastard.  Vote!

Only people who vote have a right to join me in It just doesn’t matter!  Only after voting do we have the right to be apathetic.

After all, that’s exactly what our forefathers intended.  That’s exactly what George Washington fought for.

That and a decent set of teeth.

67 Comments leave one →
  1. Jill Pinnella Corso permalink
    October 19, 2012 10:46 am

    I love hearing about your political past. More interesting than you maybe think. I think a lot of people fantasize about running the show for a hotshot politician, like MJF did on Spin City, even if they realize the day-to-day probably sucks as much as any other job.

    I’m ashamed to say I don’t know what Meatballs is. But I like it.

    • October 28, 2012 8:47 pm

      Thanks, Jill. The weird thing is that usually people like me who worked behind the scenes have zero desire to the be the up-front and center politician — why is that? I guess because it’s much more fun to yell out, “Pay no attention to the person behind the curtain!”

      Meatballs has its merit. Give it a chance. Your life will change. Or probably not.

  2. October 19, 2012 11:01 am

    Oh my goodness, rats are SO CUTE! Rats for president! A thousand rats stuffed in a suit, running on a platform that’s really a wheel, begging for more cheese. You’ll hardly know the difference!

    • October 19, 2012 12:18 pm

      Ewww. Rats.

      • October 19, 2012 12:20 pm

        I’m sorry to hear we disagree politically, Peg. I hope we can still be friends.

      • October 19, 2012 12:38 pm

        Even though we disagree rodentially, I still love you.

      • October 20, 2012 5:31 pm

        It’s cool. I’m allergic to rats anyway. And the winter house mice have turned me anti-rodent in general. Down with rats! Rats off to ya, rats!

      • October 28, 2012 8:50 pm

        Even rats in suits? Adorable! Come on, Peg. Open up your heart a little.

    • October 28, 2012 8:49 pm

      I’ll have you know, Nicki, that I was *this* close to closing off all comments after this one from you. I laughed and laughed and laughed and proclaimed it “comment perfection” and raised a glass of Tang to it. I almost bronzed it and hung it on my wall.

  3. October 19, 2012 11:08 am

    Socks! I forgot about Socks! I wonder where he is now. I loved hearing about your political past. Would it be OK with you if I started a write-in campaign for you? I think old videos from the 80s is something the American people can get behind. You are our hope.

    • October 28, 2012 8:52 pm

      I loved Socks. I don’t even remember any animals that came before Socks. I suppose maybe Ronnie had a dog or something?

      Me run for office? Get outta town! You are so kind. As it turns out, I have a whole social justice platform based exclusively around The More You Know PSAs.

  4. October 19, 2012 11:18 am

    Yeah!! “It just doesn’t matter!” Ah, hell, Angie. I think that might be my new motto. “The man in the mirror” one was getting a bit old anyway. Thanks for your flashback and for introducing me to quite possibly the best motivational speech I’ve EVER heard. Have an awesome weekend (scrumptious lentil soup on the menu over here).

    PS – does it count if I physically go vote, but abstain from voting for either candidate?

    • October 28, 2012 8:54 pm

      If anyone was going to embrace my “It just doesn’t matter!” election day chant, I knew it’d be you, Shannon.

      Hope your lentil soup was as good as I said it’d be.

  5. October 19, 2012 11:47 am

    ha ha! Good video clip – I agree it just doesn’t seem to matter. During the debates the other night, I had to leave the room several times, I almost had a seizure of annoyance. There should definitely be more parties, more candidates, more choice, and less b.s. I miss Nader and wish there were more of his type with enough support to at least get more diverse and varied messages and ideas into the American consciousness. Of course I’ll be voting in an “eh” kind of way…but I know that it just doesn’t matter….

    • October 28, 2012 8:58 pm

      Yeah, I think we need a three-party system. Like European countries have. That’d liven things up. For one, I don’t think there have ever been debates as wild as when Perot was in there back in ’92. That was fun. That was like watching some kind of crazy reality show episode of I Want To Be The American President or something. Good times!

  6. October 19, 2012 11:58 am

    I’ll join you in your apathy….tomorrow.

    • October 28, 2012 9:00 pm

      You can join in whenever the spirit moves you (or lack thereof).

  7. October 19, 2012 12:20 pm

    Rachel over on your sidebar looks less than enthused about Bill Murray’s motivational speech. Maybe she should be replaced by someone so enthusiastic about your videos, and life in general, that she shows it by joyfully riding a sheep! Not that I know anybody fitting that description.

    • October 28, 2012 9:01 pm

      Rachel over on my sidebar is just temporarily drunk on AquaNet fumes. Once her head clears a bit, she’ll be chanting along with me, just you wait.

  8. October 19, 2012 12:28 pm

    Wow. Bill Murray was so YOUNG in that clip. And I’m ashamed to say that I have never actually seen Meatballs. Caddy Shack? Yes. But I somehow missed this other teen comedy romp. You still love me, right?

    I will join in your apathy campaign. I mean, I don’t really care about it or anything, but whatevs. Meh.

    • October 28, 2012 9:04 pm

      Of course I won’t hold it against you for having never seen Meatballs. I have no idea why I’ve seen it 30,000 times. I must’ve been raised in Canada or something, though I have no recollection of this. But I do have recollections of seeing Meatballs twice a year since I was six.

      Meatballs must be viewed during the summer. Too many summer season and camping references. To watch it now would be like watching It’s A Wonderful Life in July.

  9. Tony permalink
    October 19, 2012 12:41 pm

    What’s all this have to do with Mayor McCheese? You had my hopes up. So disappointed in you, sis. ;-)

    • October 28, 2012 9:05 pm

      I know. I still need to do my Top Ten Favorite Product Mascots post. It will happen soon, I promise. And Mayor McCheese will rule the day.

  10. October 19, 2012 1:57 pm

    I would LOVE (LOVE!!!) to see “Childhood Relived” Angie write an Attorney General speech for her blog.

    You have some stories to tell, Nnng. And I will get them out of you. Because it matters. To me. Oh yeah. I said it.

    Now time to return to my regularly scheduled apathy.

    • October 28, 2012 9:07 pm

      Oh my God, Jules. That would really be something.

      1982-Angie: “Crime is bad. Don’t do it. People who do crime things are bad. My political party is really good. We are the best about making sure people don’t do bad things. Vote for me. Bye.”

      How was that?

  11. October 19, 2012 1:59 pm

    I always hate it when students talk about which party they belong to. No, you don’t – you’re not 18. You join a party and give up some of your personal beliefs in order to gain strength of numbers. Why would you subvert those beliefs before you have to? Or worse, use a gang to decide your personal beliefs for you in the first place?

    • October 28, 2012 9:11 pm

      Very wise of you to point out. I toss around the idea of switching to Independent. Except I’d call myself “Inde” because that sounds really, really cool.

  12. October 19, 2012 3:21 pm

    I’ll vote, then I’ll walk out fo the booth and the elementary school it’s set up in and shrug my shoulders. I’ve never seen “Meatballs” and probably never will. If I want an inspirational speech, I’ll go with Bluto Blutarski’s “Animal House” rant.

    In other news, you looked so different before preschool. They really stole your innocence and put a few too many miles on your Bigwheel. You seem to have recovered nicely, though.

    • October 28, 2012 9:15 pm

      I grew up watching Meatballs. I hadn’t seen it for years and suddenly wanted to rent it at age 32. My husband pointed out it was cheaper to buy it than rent it, so now we own it on DVD. I watched it once and thought, “eh?” That was five years ago. It has it’s moments. The above clips is one of the better ones. The Animal House rant is a good one too.

      The “before” photo was taken the day before preschool. The “after” was taken the day before I went to rehab.

  13. October 19, 2012 7:37 pm

    My word, I have never seen that movie. How is that possible? Could life have been different had I seen that motivational speech?

    • October 28, 2012 9:19 pm

      Yes, Karen. Life might’ve been different. The apathy that’d no doubt manifest after watching this scene could have provided tremendous comfort to you throughout your tumultuous teen years. If only…

  14. October 19, 2012 10:08 pm

    I think I’ll have to agree with Tony on this one: I got keyed up by the sight of Mayor McCheese, too. Maybe your next post could deal with a run-in you once had with the burger-skulled mayor…

    • October 28, 2012 9:21 pm

      Mayor McCheese has in fact made a campaign stop on this blog before. I’m sure he’ll stop by again soon. He’s savvy. He knows where his base resides.

      • October 28, 2012 10:55 pm

        Not only is he savvy, but remove his legs and arms, and he’s quite delicious, too.

        And now that I actually read what I just wrote, it sounds less funny, and decidedly more creepy. My apologies.

  15. October 20, 2012 6:02 am

    I want to vote for Bill Murray. Well, at least the young mullet-wearing version of Bill. I think with most things in life, I could use the chant “It just doesn’t matter!” It’s an all-purpose slogan.
    By the way, the before and after meth photos have completely scared me straight and away from preschools in general. (but you were so dang cute!!!)

    • October 28, 2012 9:23 pm

      Bill Murray with a mullet for President! Of course, isn’t there an old adage about not trusting a man with a mullet? Or is that a beard? Or is that a Camaro?

  16. October 20, 2012 7:40 am

    I’m quite sure that it is no coincidence that an ad for Mitt Romney popped up in the middle of the clip. Those damn Koch brothers have infiltrated you blog, Angie. Beware!

    • October 28, 2012 9:24 pm

      What? You’re kidding me, right? Oh, you mean on the video clip. Phew, for a second there I thought I needed to shut this whole thing down.

  17. October 20, 2012 7:40 am

    Oh and are you trying to fire me up???????

  18. October 20, 2012 8:05 am

    I’m all for apathy, but if Mittens gets elected, I’m going to strap fifty dogs to the roof of my car and drive off a cliff.

    • October 22, 2012 12:13 am

      I was feeling entirely apathetic until I read this comment. DON’T DO IT SPEAKER 7. There are still good things in this world, like donuts, and Nickelback, and giant cockroaches…. Oh, hmmm… Perhaps I should go back to apathy. Inspirational speeches don’t appear to be my strong suit.

      • October 28, 2012 9:27 pm

        Are these donuts in cider mills? And you still haven’t told me what a cider mill and a donut have to do with one another.

      • October 28, 2012 9:32 pm

        Gah!!! (Your high school English teacher just counted all those exclamation points and cried…) A cider mill is where they press apples, dump sugar in there and end up with delicious cider. I’d send you the book, but few paperback books survive three kids.

        Also, I have no idea why apple cider is so much better than apple juice. It’s one of the great mysteries of life.

      • October 28, 2012 9:35 pm

        I actually live near a massive apple orchard that cranks out a few truckloads of cider every year. I forgot. Oops. But I didn’t know they served donuts there. So I learned something new. Super!

        P.S. How’d you know my high school English teacher hated excessive punctuation!?!?!!!!?

      • October 28, 2012 9:41 pm

        They all do. I think there’s a yearly continuing ed class where all English teachers get together and gripe about it… amongst other grammatical crimes. Of course. I hear they also LOVE sentence fragments, but… Sometimes nothing says what you need to say quite like a sentence fragment.

        And I’m jealous of where you live. I’m told I live near the path of a hurricane (which is a lot less fun).

      • October 28, 2012 9:46 pm

        That’s me. The queen of sentence fragments.

        Wow — stay safe out there!

      • October 28, 2012 9:33 pm

        P.S. I really think you should be more concerned about your friend driving off a cliff. Just sayin’…

      • October 28, 2012 9:38 pm

        Ah, well. More cider and donuts for us.

      • October 28, 2012 9:42 pm

        This is not a great way to maintain friendships. Thank goodness, bloggers aren’t real people anyway. Phew!

      • October 28, 2012 9:48 pm

        S7 is bluffing. She’s not the type to drive off a cliff. No, she’ll climb into her Forever Lazy suit, watch 3,000 hours of reality TV and end it that way. And I will join her.

      • October 28, 2012 9:50 pm

        I would offer to join the two of you, but I require donuts, apple cider, and regular injections of caffeine. I’m kind of a high-maintenance couch potato.

    • October 28, 2012 9:26 pm

      And Big Bird. Take him with you. By then he’ll be no good to us anyway.

  19. October 20, 2012 8:34 pm

    You’re a genius, pairing the Meatballs speech with politics! It just doesn’t matter! Yes, I’ll vote, but deep down I’ll know the truth. It just doesn’t matter!

    • October 23, 2012 8:34 am

      Your tea bag defiance cracked me up. I can sooo see you fishing it out again. (Uh, that would be me too.)

    • October 23, 2012 8:36 am

      Oops! Sorry Sara for any confusion. That comment was directed at Jean-François below.

    • October 28, 2012 9:28 pm

      You got it, Sara! I’m so glad I could provide such a boost to your civic pride. Or, no, I probably mean the opposite of that.

  20. October 22, 2012 12:30 pm

    As a new resident in the US, what I think truly doesn’t matter at all, from a legal perspective anyway. I am allowed to pay taxes, but not to vote (which prompted me to throw a tea bag into the Pacific, an act of defiance that went largely unnoticed; it didn’t help that I immediately fished the thing out, because I give a hoot about the environment). Coming from Canada, where voting happens a month or two after the election is called — and having spent many years in Japan, where the Prime Minister changes every couple of weeks for no apparent reason — this two years of campaigning is striking me as very, very odd and just a tad more expensive than it need be. But hey, I am new here; I must be missing something.

    While I’m on the topic, I’m a little concerned to see that Mayor McCheese is still in power. I think such long reigns lead to abuse. Based on the strong family resemblance to H.R. Pufnstuff, the Mayor of Living Island, I also think there might be some nepotism going on. Would that I could vote and have my voice heard on these issues.

    • October 23, 2012 8:35 am

      I think I clicked on the wrong “reply” button. The comment to Sara above was meant for you!

      • October 23, 2012 1:43 pm

        I wonder what the environmental impact of the Boston Tea Party was? At very least, those fish got a little too much caffein, methinks.

      • October 23, 2012 2:38 pm

        Caffeinated fish? There might be market for that! It’d be like a two-fer. Ha.

    • October 28, 2012 9:32 pm

      Since I am an American and therefore know almost nothing about what the rest of the world does with its time, I blacked out through most of your comment until I got to the line containing Mayor McCheese. I like cheese.

  21. October 22, 2012 10:21 pm

    “I am a rat-faced bastard and I approve this message.” Awe.Some.

  22. October 23, 2012 12:00 pm

    C’mon, do I have to?

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