Thursday, July 31, 2008

Makes you wonder where the mouthpiece goes.

In anticipation of the inevitable media freakout over the Obama Semi-World Tour and the guaranteed assaults on my intelligence, last week I switched from my usual cable political programs to game shows.

Not a bad choice.

I discovered that I don’t much care for Wheel of Fortune. This is not only because Pat Sajak’s head is disconcertingly large in proportion to the rest of his body and because he writes vapid columns for Human Events but also because the missing-letters format of the show reminds me of the migraine-related visual disturbances I used to suffer.

Eventually I settled on Family Feud, now hosted by the guy who used to play Elaine‘s boss, J. Peterman, on Seinfeld. The great thing about Family Feud, I came to realize, is that it requires nothing more of its TeeVee audience than the occasional readjustment of the volume setting. Perfect.

Perfect until the night when, in response to the question, “Name a musical instrument that you play while holding it between your legs,” the contestant confidently responded, “A tuba.”

Peterman looked sideways at the camera, arched his well-tended eyebrows, and quipped, “Makes you wonder where the mouthpiece goes.”

It was time to head back to MSNBC, where we all know where the mouthpieces go.

After the switchback from gameshowland, I suddenly realized how much MSNBC political programming resembles Family Feud, only with better makeup and wardrobe and much less mindless handclapping. Nearly every segment within each MSNBC political program seems to feature two or three keywords that are to be repeated as often as possible before the next commercial break.

My admittedly rough tally reveals that according to a survey of 10 MSNBC studio pundits for part of the last week of July, Barack Obama is most likely to be described as follows.

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