Sunday, August 31, 2008

Umm... President Buchanan... about that book you're writing...

The 15th President James Buchanan was often accused in his day of being a closeted homosexual. The argument was famously put forth by James Loewen in "Lies Across America: What Our Historic Sites Get Wrong", and continues to have its proponents and critics. 

It is unknown whether gay romance novelist James Buchanan is aware of this irony. It is also unknown whether or not the works of gay romance novelist James Buchanan are actually posthumous publications of the former president himself. Let's assume, for the moment, that they are. And so I present you with a list of the homoerotic works of former President James Buchanan:

Twice the Cowboy, Twice the Ride: Manuel Santos Fuentes was not the type of cowboy Jess Graff was used to. From the moment they met during the El Paso International Rodeo, Jess wanted the Charro. When Manuel is injured during El Paso de la Muerte, Jess seizes the opportunity to get his vaquero into bed. But cross-cultural misunderstandings and family feuds threaten to destroy their relationship before it really starts. Can two men from wildly different backgrounds overcome hatred and jealousy and learn to trust in each other?

The Good Thief: What if the wrong guy, turns out to be the right guy for you? Caesar Serrano thought he screwed up when he landed in the bed of LAPD Officer Nathan Reilly. But when Caesar breaks into the wrong house and stumbles upon a heinous crime, implicating a high ranking LAPD officer, Nate is the only person he knows to turn to. The resulting investigation throws the Blue Brigade into panic. Now he's running for his life and Nate is his only hope for survival. Can two men, on opposite sides of the law, come together to bring a monster to justice?

My Brother, Coyote: Seth and True are cousins, born in the same house on the Navajo reservation. That's about all they have in common, though, what with Seth going the way of a bad seed, and True living up to his name and going to college while studying with the tribe to become a medicine man. They have one other thing in common, though. They love each other, to the point where secrets in both this world and the spirit world threaten to destroy them because of it. When they're trapped by a vicious pothunter they believe is raiding a sacred burial ground, they learn that some secrets can kill. Can these brother-cousins stay alive...and stay together?

Oh President Buchanan, we hardly knew ye.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Quiz Time

It was the tumultuous 60s, the country was at war, and the Democratic convention descended upon Chicago to select a Presidential candidate. Do you know was nominated? Or have I fooled you again?


Dear nerd,

I hope you're not busy, because I'm about to steal 30 minutes of your time with this website. It's a timeline of Teddy Roosevelt's life composed of entries from his diary. The hilarity cannot be unintentional; it's just too good for it to be the work of some stodgy Teddy Roosevelt Collection librarian who accidently put together a work of unintended comedy greatness. Here are some choice quotes:

April  1873: In Vienna "I bought a black cock and used up all my arsenic on him"

November  1878: 
2nd - At Porcelain initiation, "...was higher with wine than ever have been before-or will again. Still, I could wind my watch. Wine makes me awful fighty."
26th - Begins teaching Sunday school at Christ Church on Garden street opposite Cambridge Common

March 1879: Romping through Maine

September 1883: Kills first buffalo

August 1884: Kills two deer with one bullet. "This was much the best shot I ever made."

May 1885: Picks up new herd in Medora. Survives late night stampede

May 1896: Comptroller Fitch's testy exchange results in the offering of a duel. "Pistols or anything else!" Yells Roosevelt. Cools off and tells reporters there will be no duel.

February 1904: Lunch with Buffalo Bill

April 1904: Letter to Ted: "I am very glad I have been doing this Japanese wrestling... My right ankle and my left wrist and one thumb and both great toes are swollen sufficiently to more or less impair their usefulness... since you left they have taught me three new throws that are perfect corkers."

December 1909: Dines on elephant trunk soup from the beast he and Kermit disposed of the preceding evening. 

December 1913:
13th - "Caymans were becoming more plentiful. The ugly brutes lay on the sand-flats and mud banks like logs, always with the head raised, sometimes with the jaws open... it is good to shoot them. I killed half a dozen..."
25th - Arrives in Corumba
27th - Bags ant-eater

January 1914: Bags tapir

February 1917: Writes letter to Secretary of War requesting permission to "raise a Division of Infantry with a divisional brigade of cavalry in the event of war (possibly with the permission to make one or two of the brigades of infantry, mounted infantry.)" Request denied.

March 1817: "In view of the fact that Germany is now actually engaged in war with us, I again earnestly ask permission to be allowed to raise a division for immediate service at the front." Request rejected the following day. 

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Sunday, August 17, 2008

A bit of Teddy

Browsing through my 1968 Life Magazine Special Issue on the Presidency, as I'm wont to do on weekends, and I found two interesting Roosevelt quotes:

"I wish I had 16 or 20 lions to turn loose on the Senate floor"

A first natural reaction to this was that he was angry at the Senate and wanted lions to attack them. More likely though he was sitting in the Senate floor, bored and daydreaming, and felt the sudden urge to hunt 16 or 20 lions. So urgent was the need that he didn't want to wait to go home, book a week long boat trip to Africa, hike for days across the Serengeti, and stalk and kill one maybe two lions. No, he wanted to kill 16 to 20 lions right then and there. Such is bloodlust.

Apparently he also called golf a "sissy game" and advised Taft that if he played it in public he would lose the 1908 election. I couldn't agree more. I mean, would you vote for this?

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Mary Odd

I find the title of Brian Thornton's book, "101 Things You Didn't Know about Lincoln", a little bit condescending. Oh yeah, Mr.Thornton? Are you so sure I'm a Lincoln illiterate simpleton who doesn't know any of these 101 things about Abe Lincoln? Well I like to think I know a little bit about Abraham Gregory Lincoln, our nations first President, inventor of the lightbulb, and legendary general who defeated Napoleon in World War I. Despite my haughtiness I gave the book a chance, and while I was entertained, the title was a damned lie: I didn't learn a whole lot new about Lincoln. I did, however, learn a few things about Lincoln's wife Mary Todd.

After Lincoln's assassination, Mary didn't leave the White House for five weeks. I wonder if Andrew Johnson and his family moved in before she moved out and they shared awkward, silent dinners with Mary dressed in widow's garb? When she did finally leave the White House she was wearing so many black veils that people could not see her face at all. Creepy!

I also learned she supposedly once chased Abe down the road with either a butcher knife or a broom. I'd say the difference there is important. And later, after Lincoln's death but before her son Robert had her committed to a sanitarium, she would pay hotel maids to sleep in her hotel room with her because she was afraid to sleep alone. I knew she was a little off, but that's not Drew Barrymore or Cameron Diaz slightly nuts, that's Howard Hughes or Charlie Sheen batshit crazy.

101 things I didn't know about Lincoln? No. A couple stories about crazy old Mary Todd Lincoln I've never heard before? Definitely.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

T.R.: Warmonger?

The insightful and witty James Poulos thinks that William Jennings Bryan needs to shut his silver loving, evolution hating mouth about Teddy Roosevelt.... not in so many words of course.

He argues that T.R. gets the short shrift from critics who call him a warmonger. Sure, as President he kept his cool, but as undersecretary of the navy? He was a bit overzealous about the Spanish-American war... what with trying to start it and all. And that wasn't even his first choice of wars, what he really wanted was a war with Germany. After overseeing the arming of the U.S.S. Maine, Roosevelt thought it would be swell if there was war to be had, any old war would do, really:

"I wish there was a chance that the Maine was going to be used against some foreign power; by preference Germany-but I am not particular, and I'd take even Spain if nothing better offered"

Luckily for Roosevelt, unluckily for the Maine, he got his wish when the Maine exploded in a Cuban harbor and provided him with an excuse to begin pushing for a war. How hard did he push for war? I'll let his boss, Secretary of the Navy John Long, tell you:

"I find that Roosevelt, in his precipitate way, has come very near causing more of an explosion than happened to the Maine... The very devil seemed to possess him."

I've gotta say, with all due respect to the James Poulos and the 1906 Nobel Prize Committee, that sounds a bit like a warmonger.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Some Hayes Never Learn

In what must have been a debauched orgy of bacchanal delights, the living descendants of Rutherford B. Hayes gathered at his home in Fremont Ohio Saturday to pay tribute and share memories. Stephen Hayes, great-great-grandson of Ruddy, let's us know what fun it was growing up in such a historical site: "Many rooms were off limits. My parents wouldn't let us go into any room on the second floor." Which must have been tough for the young boy, as the second floor was where the President Hayes kept his climbnasium, ball pit, and trampoline collection.

Showing us how much the Hayes family descendants have learned since the 1870s, Hayes' great-granddaughter Margaret Clark tells us

...she admired the Hayes heritage because they took a stand for such principles as truth and honesty. "'Lemonade Lucy' -- I'm very proud of that," she said, referring to the name given Lucy Hayes because of the stance she and the President took on abstinence in the White House. "She had the fortitude to stand up for what is right."

You don't see many people taking a stand for prohibition these days. It would have been refreshing, if a little anachronistic, had she not followed that up immediately by calling for a reinstatement of the fugitive slave act and denouncing "carnal modernisms" like the telephone and the daguerreotype.

Oh my God he's going to do it!

He's tired of losing steam in the polls, and he's been reading our website, so now he knows what the American people really want. He's going to follow our advice and end this election right here and now the way it should be done!

Friday, August 8, 2008

Now THAT would be badass...

We've all received the chain mail from our racist aunt or uncle from Kentucky making the water-tight case for Obama as anti-christ. Now, according to this this Time article, people are suggesting the new McCain video is designed to insinuate that the rumor is true. Like we needed more proof! Right, Aunt Mabel?

The article itself really, truly says it best:

It's not easy to make the infamous Willie Horton ad from the 1988 presidential campaign seem benign. But suggesting that Barack Obama is the Antichrist might just do it.

Seriously though, if it were true -and I'm not saying it is- that would be pretty badass. Lightning from his hands, plagues of locusts, parting and unparting seas at his whimsy. He'd be unstoppable and would dominate in a fight against any president... unless of course the mythical, paranoid rumors that racist rednecks spread about Martin Van Buren were also true, and he was actually a partially shaved yetti. THEN we'd have a fight on our hands. What do you say, Anti-christ v.s. Yetti, who takes it?

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Alternative Theories

"Nixon was always being attacked sexually. It was always said that he was a fag and that he had no sexual relations with his wife for 15 years and that was why he liked power. And Hitler had only one ball, and that was why he wanted to conquer the world."

That's future Governer Schwarzenneger delivering a handful of homophobic smack-down to Dick Nixon in a 1977 interview. I can think of another Reason why Pat Nixon (a stone cold fox, by the way) wouldn't have slept with Nixon for 15 years. I'll give you a clue; it's paunchy, sweaty, and covered in phlebitis.

"I am not a gay"

Good point, Woody

"men of ordinary physique and discretion cannot be President and live, if the strain be not somehow relieved. We shall be obliged always to be picking our chief magistrates from among wise and prudent athletes-a small class" ~ Woodrow Wilson

Woodrow Wilson knew Presidents need to be tough. It's amazing then, given his advice that we elect only athletes, that Wilson ever ran for President, because he was sick and getting sicker. He began suffering from repeated neurological diseases starting six years before he was elected. Presidential health historian Kenneth Crispell counts six "medical episodes" between 1906 and 1920 that affected his performance as president.

I don't need to go on about how sick he was, I think I've made the point...but I will anyway.

During his last term he suffered a stroke so bad that his face grew more paralyzed every time he smiled. He grew a beard and moustache for the first time in his life to try and hide this. His doctor warned cabinet members not to upset him because "any excitement might kill him". Yet somehow, the depressed, semiparalyzed Wilson, who thought that presidents should be "wise and prudent athletes", attempted to seek a third term.

Woodrow Wilson's words support our website in theory, and his actions prove the need for it to be done in reality, rather than merely speculatively. If Dennis Kucinich thinks he is one of the "wise and prudent athletes" fit to run the country, then I say he proves it. Give us 30 pushups, beat Olympia Snowe in a fist-fight (fair match-up, no?), or stop running for President.

Monday, August 4, 2008

maybe there is some pie

Already full from lunch, a worn and beaten Barack Obama gave in to the fatty expectations of the patrons of a Missouri diner. "Well, I've had lunch today but I'm thinking maybe there is some pie", he conceded. Like a first time visitor to an italian home for dinner, he does not know how to politely say no to the persistent "Eat! You're too skinny! Eat something!" What he needs to learn, is how to say "No thanks, I'm full. You fat, petty, fucking idiots."

It's hard to blame him for yielding to the peer pressure though (he had the fried chicken, not pie). The people are genuinely confused by Obama's physical appearance, and as a potential future president, he needs to clarify things for them. For instance, the sincerely puzzled Glen Johnson, informed us in a recent Associated Press article that "Sometimes it's hard to tell if Barack Obama is running for president of the United States or Mr. Universe." It's understandable how Mr.Johnson and other functionally retarded individuals are so easily perplexed. You see, Barack Obama goes to the gym, and when Glen Johnson sees someone in a gym, he assumes he's training to compete for Mr.Universe. Likewise, he's unsure of whether or not John McCain is a senator or a bus driver. You see, John McCain is often seen on a bus, surely he drives it for a living?

McCain campaign manager Rick Davis is more than confused, he's indignant. "Only celebrities like Barack Obama go to the gym three times a day" he insightfully sneered. He's right, and Obama should thank him for the advice and embrace his strategy. First you go to the gym, then you win Mr.Universe, then you become a celebrity, and then and only then do you run for an executive office.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Problem Wit You Is You Ain't Fat Enough, Friend.

The Wall Street Journal has their fingers on the fat sweaty pulse of the nation, and they let us know that fat people (i.e. most people) don't like to be reminded of their fatness by a skinny Presidential candidate. Apparently people are uncomfortable because Obama is too skinny. "He ain't like me! He ain't like me!", the public worries.

One enlightened voter lays out the case:

"I won't vote for any beanpole guy," another Clinton supporter wrote last week on a Yahoo politics message board.

Why am I not surprised this quote comes from on an internet message board rather than a jogger in the park, or someone standing under the own power? If I were Obama, I wouldn't worry about this guy and his demographic. Maury Povich can't show up at all of their houses with a forklift to hoist them to the polls on election day.

Actually, I think we have a photo of the guy who posted that comment as he posted it.

This article is so rich with hilarious goodness that there will be at least 2 more posts on it to come (hint: they mention Taft). Thank you WSJ, for assuring us what the voters want: "Yeah, I agree with his values and qualifications... but who would win in a fight?"

We Stand Corrected

Good news. Lifted from the comments, our friends at Studio Macbeth assuage our worries:

You'll be happy to know that we have not neglected historical moments in Lincoln's life. This is a series of portraits and we are holding back a good number of them for the moment... Lest anyone get the wrong impression from your ending sentence, be assured that we are creating no images of Lincoln brushing his teeth or worse.

We're relieved to hear that they will not be doing 3D renditions of Lincoln biting his toenails, smelling his finger, or burying a dead pet cat. NOT that we wouldn't want to see those things per se, in fact I would pay a good deal of money to see a 3D rendition of Lincoln biting his toenails. We just worried that talent was being wasted, but we worry no more. Thanks for the correction Studio Macbeth, and keep up the good work... and I hate to be a nag, but have you thought about doing one of Lincoln kicking Rutherford B. Hayes in the crotch? Now THAT would be a good use of your talent.