The Passing Parade: Cheap Shots from a Drive By Mind

"...difficile est saturam non scribere. Nam quis iniquae tam patiens urbis, tam ferreus, ut teneat se..." " is hard not to write Satire. For who is so tolerant of the unjust City, so steeled, that he can restrain himself... Juvenal, The Satires (1.30-32)

Monday, August 02, 2004

PARTY PATCHES: We have before us the Spectator issue of June 2, 1711, in which Mr. Spectator, Joseph Addison himself, no less, comments on the then new fashion amongst stylish women of attending the opera wearing small patches on their faces, the better to advertise their political affiliations. Patches worn on the left side of the face branded one as a Tory, whereas patches on the right side marked the lady as a Whig. Women born with a mole on the partisanally incorrect side of their faces were at something of a loss at the time, what with having to defend themselves against charges of betraying their party from the womb onwards. The price of having a zit in the wrong place could mean social and political disaster.

In our enlightened age, we are more advanced than the poor bewigged wretches of the 18th century, so for us patches are not necessary, but the need for a strong party identification remains, so the Federal Elections Commission has ordered that henceforth Democratic women will wear donkey shaped tongue studs and nose rings to demonstrate party loyalty, whereas Republican women will wear tasteful pearl earrings and a butterfly tattoo on some portion of their anatomy not immediately visible to the curious onlooker. Republican women may have a problem with this, as the elephant is the traditional symbol of the GOP, but Microsoft has bought the rights to the elephant symbol for an undisclosed amount of cash and several Western states, and so the Republicans, as part of that same deal, will now use Microsoft's butterfly logo as its party symbol. What it lacks in tradition, however, it makes up for in looks. Butterflies, let's face it, are more attractive than elephants.


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