Sorry, Charlie

We think it was Carlin’s. Or it might have been Robert Klein’s. Or maybe it was just low-hanging fruit, waiting to be plucked.

The premise of Charlie the Tuna — see, you know where this is going already — was that he was desperate to be chosen. Dying, even. He wanted to be good enough, make the team. Charlie didn’t want to be left behind.

But good enough for what? To be eaten, of course. That was unspoken in the commercials, which made it ripe for comedy. Just what is going on here? An anthropomorphic tuna with a deathwish?

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The Narcissist in Winter

You may have heard that he made a couple of appearances this weekend.

Or maybe you didn’t. You can read the reports, but usually we don’t have to wait for the news to hear what he said. Everybody’s talking about him anyway.

But not Friday night, and not Saturday night, either. Statue garden? Barely a ripple. New race war? Save it for the Analysis columns.

For the first time since he descended the Escalator to Hell, Donald Trump was being ignored.

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War-Torn America

Last fall, before the bottom fell out of America, we surveyed the state of our nation’s rapid decline, and the time it would take to recover.

It was really a survey of our nation’s government. The country as a whole, well, we’d muddle along as always, perhaps worse off than before, but substantially unchanged.

We were adorable in our implicit optimism. As bad as things were, we had no fucking clue how bad they could get.

Saturday night, shots were fired in Louisville.

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The Thick Blue Line

We thought we were going to talk about Tulsa.

There’s a lot to say about Tulsa. How it was supposed to be the Tyrant’s triumphant return to public life. How he would once again ramble on before an adoring crowd. How it was originally deliberately scheduled to step on Juneteenth, in the city where a racist massacre happened a century ago. How his campaign hyped the registration numbers, which were wildly inflated by kids monkeywrenching the online signup. How, in the end, the 19,000-seat arena was only a third full.

There’s a lot to say, but we didn’t know where to start.

And then we saw this photo.

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It Takes a Nation of Karens to Hold Us Back

It’s a video we’re familiar with by now: a presumptuous white woman lording it over someone who is black. Or, in some newer variations, brown.

“Lording” is the word we came up with when looking for a verb: Lord of the manor. I own this joint. I own this situation. I own you. Fact of life. Deal with it.

It’s the woman we were talking about the moment before we started talking about George Floyd, the woman in Central Park. It’s the woman we’ve seen many times since, so frequently that there are multiple “Karens Gone Wild” accounts on Twitter, collecting examples.

The guys we’ve seen, well, they’re usually police, fully dehumanized — and dehumanizing — in their riot gear. The women need no such protection. They’re capable of complete dehumanization in their street clothes.

“Is this your property?” asks Karen.

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The Fire This Time

It’s not like this is the first time.

We’re familiar with the murder of an unarmed black man — or woman, or child — by police, just as we’re familiar with the massacre of children — or churchgoers, or revelers — by someone with a high-capacity weapon.

These things happen. Frequently. It’s the country we live in.

Also familiar is the response: A wave of anger.

Anger, followed by frustration, followed by life, such as it is, moving on. The wave crashes on the unyielding shore, then dissipates. The moment passes.

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Summer is Coming

“Ok,” the post began, “I need to say that this is the most ASININE thing I’ve seen yet.”

The caps were not ironic. More were to follow, and quickly.

“Went to Twisters Soft Serve Icecream,” it continued, “and ordered 2 doggie cups. Then I wanted a friggin icecream cone with jimmies — nope. Not allowed.”

You probably have questions. We know we did.

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