People in Washington were never friendly, but now they are really, really unfriendly. But then there’s Charleston.
Here I am at the Atlanta airport. I flew in from LAX this morning. I was so groggy when I awakened in L.A. I literally could not remember where I was even though I was in my own bedroom.
Things are sad at our home. Our beloved Brigid, German Shorthaired Pointer of my dreams, heiress to the love I had for Mary Margaret of Santa Cruz, Trixie, Puppy Wuppy, Ginger, is in extremis.
She can still get around our house in Rancho Mirage because it’s all on one floor, but we have to carry her up and down the stairs in Beverly Hills. Even though she is considerably diminished in size and weight, that’s still a chore. Plus, she falls down frequently. Her back legs just go out from under her. It is (as my wife would say) “heart rendering.”
Brigid is also extremely incontinent. My wife, a literal saint (I mean, a real saint) lets Brigid sleep next to her and deals with the mess with total aplomb. I am too weak to do it.
Anyway, Brigid, who slept next to me for 11 years, will soon be sleeping with Old Shep.
That’s what makes things sad at our home.
I slept almost the entire way from LAX to ATL. It was a super flight, a Delta 777 with comfy seats and a great staff. Then, when we got to Hartsfield, the whole place was filled with soldiers. I greeted them to the extent they did not overwhelm me, then went in search of one of my favorite foods, Popeyes chicken. All around me were kind, friendly people wanting to talk about the issues of the day. Mostly, they were TV watchers who had seen me on Fox or CNN or, even more often, CBS Sunday Morning. They were uniformly upbeat, happy, outgoing. No sneering. None of that garbage about “I usually agree with you but sometimes you’re really off base” that I get from people in Beverly Hills or New York.
I looked around me as I ate my chicken wing. The men and women had friendly faces. I know I use that term too much. But it means everything to me to have friendly faces nearby. In my main home, in Bev Hills, too many people look suspicious and cunning. Well, I am going to get in trouble if I go much further with this. Let’s just say that when wifey and I are walking around in Beverly Hills, I feel as if my pocket is being picked emotionally. Out there in AMERICA, I feel as if I am refilled.
I ate my chicken, also some string beans, went to my gate, posed for a lot of photos with soldiers (who are apparently all flying to Fort Sill for training), then got on a surprisingly large plane to one of my favorite places, Charleston.
Omar, my Charleston driver, picked me up and took me to The Charleston Place, a fine hotel, where they put me in my room.
It was COLD there in Charleston. I did not have a heavy coat, so I walked in my skimpy, pitiful threadbare blazer to a nearby barbecue place. Closed. I met a trio of men who had just eaten at FIG, a famous bistro in Charleston. One of them invited me to join them for a drink at the hotel lounge. I don’t drink, but I went with them. One of them gave me his takeout container of steak from FIG. It was heavenly. I ordered a cheeseburger. Fabulous. It was literally the best cheeseburger I have ever had.
All of us at the bar had a long conversation about current events, especially the recession. Then I went to my room, watched some nutty movie about zombies for 30 seconds, and then to bed.
I have to tell you that except for north Idaho, the Deep South is my favorite place in this world. Polite, intelligent people. Great food. No bad attitude. Love them.
Up and down to a café at The Charleston Place to meet some donors to the cause for which I am speaking in Charleston, a hospital and health care environment called “Roper St. Francis.” The guests were all happy and charming. Charleston has a lot of good-looking people, men and women. I found myself sitting next to a super successful property magnate named Jim. By an amazing stroke, he also loves German Shorthaired Pointers. He has a huge farm in North Carolina and many, many, many other homes, but his main love seems to be his dogs, which is as it should be.
I am not sure I have ever hit it off so quickly and happily with anyone else in my life as I did with Jim. It turned out we had met before at a bank conference. He is my new hero.
A man of faith in a godless age is hitting Americans where it hurts.
Mr. and Mrs. American Spectator Reader, let P.J. O’Rourke talk sense to your kids.
In Britain, defending your property can get you life.
The debacle of this president’s administration is both a cause and a symptom of the decline of American values. Unless Congress impeaches him, that decline will go on unchecked. An eminent jurist surveys the damage and assesses the chances for the recovery of our culture.
It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
The American Christmas, like the songs that celebrate it, makes room for everybody under the rainbow. Is that why so many people seem to be hostile to it?
Was the President done in by the economy, or by the politics of the economy?