Thursday, July 31, 2008

In Pretense of Inurement

Beware the spew of Chlamydosaurus kingii, aka The Frilled Dragon

As a self-described word-wonk, I'm always up for the bite of nice, chewy neologisms, but when it comes to using them in writing, I regard them the same way I do a platter of chocolate-chip cookies: indulge in more than one or two and you're risking that sick-to-the-stomach feeling. When doled out or consumed in ill-considered bulk, that which is fresh and tasty becomes cloying, then stomach-turning. Witty turns to clever-assed, the kissing-cousin of shtick.

And so it is with the neologism-choked "writing" of Michelle Malkin.

Apparently, the rising star of Barack Obama--and more specifically, the appearance of his family's smiling faces in the racks of our grocery store checkout lines--is giving Malkin a bad case of agita:
People brings you the scoop on what really matters in this critical presidential campaign: Michelle hula-hoops with her daughters. They’re just like you and me! The kids have slumber parties. They’re just like you and me! Barack does laundry, but he doesn’t fold it. They’re just like you and me! The kids get small allowances. They’re just like you and me! The Obamas wear normal clothes while doing normal things.

Er, we are talking about People magazine, right? Last time I checked (yeah, I'll cop to it, it was the Oscars fashion double issue with photographs of all the gowns and jewelry), People wasn't exactly the go-to source for candidates' economic or national security policy outlines. It's a gossip lifestyle magazine--a fluffy-light marshmallow of a publication, the cover photos of which have brightened many an otherwise-gloomy morning for this accidental grocery shopper (see Owen, Clive; Pitt, Brad; Clooney, George).

Lifestyle as in, pictures of celebrities (actors, musicians, politicians) living their lives just like you and me. Photos of picnics, snapshots of little ones in strollers, informal family-gathering portraits with everyone in the frame smiling and trying to affect a thrilled-to-be-here mood despite the fact that Uncle Remus is lying face-down in the marigolds--again--having consumed three pitchers of rum punch all by his lonesome and then thrown up on the trampoline.

In other words, just like you and me. Only richer and possessed of newer, pricier outfits and top-shelf legal representation.

For Malkin, though, the tableaux vivants on display at her local supermarket this weekend reveal something false. Something false about Obama, that poseur, that presumptuous, that...that...actual husband, actual father, actual attorney-and-law-professor-turned-successful-politician. But really, everyone, how dare he try to be JUST LIKE YOU AND ME when you just know he darned well isn't? I mean, I mean...oh, what do I mean? I need some new words to describe what I'm feeling. Let's see...
Chicago corruptocrats
JustLikeYou&Me Michelle

Which one to deploy today, though? Which will be most likely to irritate the Defeatocrats? Decisions, decisions. Ah, fudge, I'll just use them all--they make the piece so much punchier and more attention-getting.

Kind of like pom-poms and pleated minskirts, only you don't have to wax first.

(H/T Sadly, No!)

Also at Cogitamus.

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