As usual, my wife said it best. She waved towards the swimming pool and the cedars and the wall to Carmelita Drive in Beverly Hills, where we live sometimes.
“Out there, there are riots and people shooting each other. And supposedly serious people are pretending it’s a big civil rights issue whether a fat sweaty 70-year-old man can sit in a toilet stall next to your five-year-old daughter. And a man takes a semi-automatic sporting rifle, and he’s a Muslim. And he’s shouting that he’s going to kill all the people he can in an Orlando nightclub in the name of Allah and ISIS — and the media are debating what his motivation was. And they’re blaming a piece of metal, a totally inert piece of metal, for the murderous acts of a crazy man. And we’re supposed to believe that Islam is a religion of peace.”
“Bush said it, too,” I said.
“Right. And there’s always the defense that anyone who kills 49 totally innocent strangers is by definition insane. But he’s nuts on the subject of radical Islam, which seems to take mentally ill people and tell them they’re sane to kill and it’s the innocent gays who are crazy. And Obama is going along with them. And we have a President who possibly sympathizes with the mass murderer and blames a totally inert piece of metal, a gun that’s as harmless as an egg beater unless a murderer picks it up.”
“He’s been hostile to the Second Amendment since day one,” I said.
“And even though pistols are used in 20 times as many murders every year as ‘assault weapons,’ we’re not going to do a thing about pistols. Why?”
“Because the gangstas have guns and Obama is genuinely afraid of them.”
“Right.” Then my wife paused and looked at a fabulous Norman Rockwell portrait of Dwight Eisenhower that we have on our fridge. Next to it is a photo of a dignified German Short Haired Pointer sitting in a canoe on a mountain lake’s placid surface.
“Right,” said my wifey again. “But we don’t need to worry about that right now because we’re inside Club Stein. And anyway all that stuff I said about guns is just stuff you said all along.”
“Club Stein.” That’s the best club in the world. It has as its main attraction the world’s most wonderful woman, my wife for life, Alexandra Denman of Idabel, Oklahoma. Daughter of gigantic war hero. Niece of gigantic war hero, both of Prescott, Arkansas.
Not one other club, not Burning Tree, not the Chevy Chase Club, not El Dorado, has Alex. Sometimes, our spectacularly wonderful club in Rancho Mirage, Morningside, has Alex. It also has superb food and service and views and friendly, clubbable people. It’s my favorite place on earth — during the winter. But it’s Alex who is the jewel in the crown.
We have a tiny little house in Malibu. Babs Streisand, our neighbor, would not use it to store old paint cans. But it’s enough for us, and when it has Alex in residence, it’s Club Stein and it’s the most exclusive club on earth.
We have a 27 ½ foot Cobalt on Lake Pendoreille in Idaho. With Alex smiling her dazzling smile next to the wheel as we glide towards Bottle Bay, it’s better than any oil sheikh’s boat or any Wall Streeter’s ocean liner.
I’ll make this short: the rest of the world is going nuts. That was not a joke a moment ago. In a world where Muslim killers are impaling little kids on stakes and raping early teen girls until they become pregnant, then selling them, in a world where the most brutal dictatorship on earth — North Korea — has nuclear weapons and long range missiles, in a world where Sweden, once one of the most peaceful nations on earth, has become the world capital of rape and gang rape because of the wholesale arrival of Muslim men and the PC police are not allowed to even talk about it, in that world, we’re supposed to be worried about whether a gay man can move his bowels next to sorority girls. And this is supposed to be a real problem.
“All history repeats itself,” said Marx. “The first time as tragedy. The second time as farce.” But somehow, it doesn’t seem funny.
Never mind. In Club Stein we have hot dogs for lunch and they’re better than caviar. In Club Stein we rarely leave the house except to go to another house. In Club Stein we have full diversity. We have 7 cats of every color and 2 dogs — GSP’s — of brown, gray, black, and white. We have Hispanics in our club and Asians (doing nails and getting help with their college homework) and blacks calling to tell me I have an overdraft. That happens almost every day so Club Stein will someday soon have to consolidate its clubhouses.
It won’t matter because Club Stein is about Alex, who is the kindest, most forgiving, most loving, funniest, most un-PC, most empathetic, most beautiful woman ever made. She’s a divinity. She literally — and I mean literally — treats other people the way she would want to be treated and will not do anything to others she would not want done to her. I’m not even remotely in her league
We’re not the only members. We have our Rosa and Jennifer and Judah and Bob and Phil and Jacqueline and Carla and Tim and Aram and John and Barron and Karl and Mike and Nancy and Rachel and Mel and Julie and David and Linda and Mike and Marcia and Wlady and Nolan. But the board of directors are Alex and the dogs and I, and we pay homage many times a day to Richard Nixon, the peacemaker, and to the Crusader for Peace, Ike, and to the mountain lakes which are the America we pledge allegiance to when we pledge allegiance. Outside, the aliens are invading. Inside, it’s The Garden of the Finzi Steins for a few more moments.
Meanwhile, it’s Alex’s birthday and one more year of membership in Club Stein, where life still makes sense and Ike is still President. There’s also a Constitutional right to carry a dog.