Diary of a Mad County

WEDNESDAY Aug. 4 Girl felon Mary Kay LeTourneau gets out of a Washington state prison, where she says she found God and God said it was totally cool with Him that she and her boy boyfriend, Vili Fualaau, get back together and start pumping out more babies and make plans for the winter formal—after all, he's 21 now, and she's a loon. LeTourneau's father was the late, notorious OC Congressman John Schmitz, whose conservative politics didn't stop him from getting so much on the side that he produced two children out of wedlock. Schmitz never apologized (“I ought to get the Right to Life man-of-the-year award for this,” he told reporters soon after the 1982 scandal broke) and ran once more for congress. His daughter took the back way out of the prison, avoiding hecklers and Fox TV executives waiting at the prison gates. So, it looks like they're a couple again, and as a man who has some experience living with a woman in her 40s, I'd like to pass on some words of advice to this onetime criminally young man. No. 1: do not forget her birthday. Mature women demand recognition. Jewelry is always a nice touch, especially when it doesn't contain a tracking device. No. 2: women in their 40s are in their sexual prime—a cruel joke perpetrated by a cruel God who put men in their peak in their teens, but who am I to tell you? Anyways, you're going to have to keep an eye out for competing suitors, which is especially challenging in your case since your gal presents a much wider strike zone. Be on the lookout for the usual suspects—boys choirs, Little League squads; avoid Scout Jamborees at all costs. Good luck, young lover. You, too, Mary Kay.

THURSDAY Aug. 5 Arnold Schwarzeneggeris talking tough. Again. He says he wants to make far-reaching changes in the way the state is run, foremost being the creation of a part-time legislature. (Interestingly, he doesn't mention anything about a part-time governor, but given how much time he actually devotes to his job as opposed to fund-raising and TV appearances, that's pretty much implied.) He blusters that some will oppose his idea but that these people are not to be taken seriously since they belong to the dread “special interests,” you know, like the special interests who opposed his idea of slashing funds for the physically and developmentally disabled. Or the powerful Puppy/Kitty Lobby who fought his idea of speeding up the euthanization of pets. Now will undoubtedly come special interests who believe that if North Dakota has a full-time legislature, so should the world's fifth-largest economy. Thing of it is, Schwarzenegger will back down from this one as he did the others. Though he tries hard to act like a Republican—tearing up any constitution that doesn't suit their needs (Election 2000, Patriot Act)—he doesn't really have the stomach for this stuff. Sure, like any good Austrian, Schwarzenegger is terrific at creating scapegoats, characterizing opponents with broad accusations—special interests, girlie men, physically handicapped—aimed at people's basest fears and prejudices. Unfortunately, his years in Hollywood have instilled in him a strong desire to be liked, and when people oppose him, he tends to turn well-muscled tail and talk backward. So this is for you, Gov: “pussy loudmouth a you're.”

FRIDAY Aug. 6 That didn't take long. Never does. Schwarzenegger goes on the state-sponsored Tonight Showand tells administration spokesman Jay Leno—who was once very funny, really—that he didn't mean any of that stuff he said about a part-time legislature. Dude's act is getting as old and tired as, well, Jay Leno's. He says something crazy or stupid or crazystupid, then when people react, he backs away from it quicker than Maria Shriver from a spare rib (EAT!). A part-time legislature? Just something he “mentioned,” he says, he wasn't serious, he says, which is news to the guy already collecting signatures to put the part-time legislature “mention” on the ballot. This is the same guy who was the first to start collecting signatures for the recall of Gray Davis, and isn't that looking like a better idea every day? Lets see, we got rid of Davis because he was a divisive force who didn't live up to his word, couldn't deliver a budget on time, couldn't get along with people in his own party and seemed to spend all of his time raising money. What we got was Schwarzenegger, who's increasingly a divisive force, doesn't live up to his word, can't deliver a budget on time, can't get along with anyone in his party and spends most of his time raising money. Fuhntahstic.

SATURDAY Aug. 7 Many people wake to find that funk artist Rick James has died, greeting the news with that initial jolt and inevitable recognition that accompanied the passings of John Belushi, Chris Farley and Courtney Love. I'll miss Rick, but I'm far more spooked by the discovery of another celebrity's–kinda—death. Postmodern writer Ronald Sukenick died. Actually, he died last week, but since I don't watch a lot of Access Hollywood, I'm just finding out now. Now, I forget if postmodernists are writers what use no punctuations or writers critical of the outmoded methods of the U.S. Postal Service; point is I'm spooked because one of the last things Ronald Sukenick did was write a letter very critical of the Weekly. We had run a book review critical of a friend of his, and Sukenick wrote defending his buddy and ripping us. And then he died. The thing of it is, about six months earlier, Bobby Hatfield of the Righteous Brothers died soon after writing a letter critical of the Weekly. Oooooh. Hatfield wasn't happy about where we ranked the Righteous Brothers in a list of the top 149 Orange County musical acts. Perhaps he was pissed at being behind Sugar Ray, or maybe it was because we ranked the Righteous Brothers 149. Anyway, he wrote that we were “lowlife cocksuckers,” a sentiment that I don't believe is so much postmodern as accurate.

SUNDAY Aug. 8 Okay, I just have to say this: Rick James is not the Super Freak. I am sick and tired of reading Rick James obits that refer to him as the Super Freak. Rick James sang about having sex with the Super Freak. The Super Freak was a woman Rick James was having sex with. So, when you call Rick James the Super Freak, you are in effect saying Rick James could go fuck himself. In effect. Mostly. Yeoow.

MONDAY Aug. 9 Hilarious child abduction. Not enough space. Tell you next week.

TUESDAY Aug. 10 George W. Bushannounces his choice to lead the CIA—you know, that government agency that works much better in movies than in real life. Just as everyone expected, Bush's choice is a Republican congressman. But it's not Christopher Cox (R-the Irvine Co.), whom some thought was in line for this job the same way he was in line for the job of V.P. or federal judge or Supreme Court Justice or Securities and Exchange Commissioner or the new head of the Willy Wonka factory. The man Bush picked is named Porter Goss. A former CIA agent and onetime partner of Dolly Parton, Goss is considered too close to the intelligence community to bring any real reforms to an agency whose agents' thoughts, words and deeds have become as meaningless as the governor of California's.

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