The pretentious motorcade rolling by the office building this week can only mean that it's U.N. time again. In order to accommodate the world's most powerful men (I believe they have all been awarded "World's Greatest Grandpa" mugs), 42nd street has been tri-sected to form a very special "center lane" because, you know, God forbid Kofi Annan has to sit in traffic like the rest of us. Fuck these people. Let them take the bus.
Despite how loathsome people in power tend to be, occasionally a gem pops out of their sweaty, over-indulged mouths: Hugo Chavez called President Bush the Devil. Now, I think Hugo Chavez may have played third base for the Yankees in the mid-90's, but he raises a valid but ultimately trite point. Yeah, yeah, yeah. The Bush administration's evil. We get it. Can we all please give up this ridiculous idea that somehow it matters? It makes no difference if it's George W. Bush or TV's lovable Conrad Bain sitting in the White House, the machinations of democracy are an illusion. You can rock the vote, march on Washington, make a macaroni peace sign and annoy people all day in Union Square, but it will never make a difference. What Chavez wants to say is that America is evil. And we are. Evil and rich. Which brings me to Kentucky.
A Comair flight went down in Kentucky and killed 49 people. Conan O'Brien did a sketch for the Emmys involving a plane crash which aired not long after the accident, prompting NBC affiliate WLEX to express outrage and offer an immediate apology (both on behalf of NBC and against it. I'm sure provincial governors in the Roman empire did a lot of this sort of thing too). This country is going out of its fucking mind with the apologizing bullshit. And the plane crash was an ancillary part of the sketch. I can see if Conan O'Brien lit a model plane on fire and threw it into a bucket of Kentucky Fried Chicken and screamed "THAT'S YOU FLIGHT 5191! THAT'S WHAT YOU LOOK LIKE!" But he didn't. So who are we apologizing to? The families of the 49 people who died? What are the chances they were watching the Emmys mere hours after their loved ones collided with a planet? What are the chances they watch the Emmys period? Apologizing for a completely unrelated comedy sketch is an empty gesture, a senseless public relations move. And any Americans audacious enough to be offended by something like that are frauds and cads. What's offensive is the speed with which these groveling apologies come these days. Our people are preemptively sorry and they stink.
"These days?" What am I, 95?