Can you write like Sarah Palin?

November 24, 2009

I wish this would happen.

Or rather, can you write like Sarah Palin’s ghostwriter?

Here are some sample sentences from her new book:

“As the soles of my shoes hit the soft ground, I pushed past the tall cottonwood trees in a euphoric cadence, and meandered through willow branches that the moose munched on.”


“I breathed in an autumn bouquet that combined everything small-town America with rugged splashes of the Last Frontier.”

Slate characterizes her style as having “multiple references to local flora and fauna, heavy use of PSAT vocabulary, slightly defensive tone, and difficult-to-parse meaning.” They even created a pretty funny index for the book. Sample entries:

food, Alaskan
________halibut tacos, 1
________reindeer sausage 1
________caribou lasagna, 218

They’re also having a contest to see who can write the most Palinesque sentence. Contest details here.

If you’re new to Pageslap, welcome!


Two videoslaps.

November 7, 2008

This is me, I admit it: The Onion reports: Obama Win Causes Obsessive Supporters To Realize How Utterly Empty Their Lives Are.

And this other one is for Alison and the rest of the TDS kids, so unless you’re a total Broadway-slash-Uta Hagen stylez nerd, don’t bother. But I like it for several reasons, most of all because it’s so obviously the fourth-year theatre school class at some university theatre program in a Midwestern state, and if videocameras had existed back when I was a lad, my class would so totally have done this. Probably in two versions so we could double-cast the leads. In this case, I particularly like the choice of casting McCain as Javert and Palin as the Thenardiers. And I like seeing the one ambiguously-ethnic girl with the belty voice as Eponine (I identify with her!). Also, don’t Marius, Cosette, and Eponine remind you of Jim, Pam, and Karen Fillipelli from The Office? And most of all, I like the fact that there was no black dude in that class to play Obama/Valjean. (Us neither! It would have been Eric J Rose, or maybe Patrick Young in politically-incorrect makeup for a stunning faculty cameo!)

Okay, theatre-school digression over.
…For now.

Newsweek’s Special Election Report

November 6, 2008

Newsweek has released highlights of its Special Election Project:

“How He Did It, 2008” is an inside, behind-the-scenes account of the presidential election produced by a special team of reporters working for more than a year on an embargoed basis and detached from the weekly magazine and Everything the project team learns is kept confidential until the day after the polls close.

The report includes some super-juicy reading:

On Palin’s extravagant wardrobe:

One aide estimated that she spent “tens of thousands” more than the reported $150,000, and that $20,000 to $40,000 went to buy clothes for her husband. Some articles of clothing have apparently been lost. An angry aide characterized the shopping spree as “Wasilla hillbillies looting Neiman Marcus from coast to coast”.

The following tidbit may explain why McCain finally started referring to Obama as “a decent Christian American” in his speeches:

McCain was dumbfounded when Congressman John Lewis, a civil-rights hero, issued a press release comparing the GOP nominee with former Alabama governor George Wallace, a segregationist infamous for stirring racial fears. McCain had devoted a chapter to Lewis in one of his books, “Why Courage Matters,” and had so admired Lewis that he had once taken his children to meet him.

Obama was nervous about the debates:

When he was preparing for [the debates] during the Democratic primaries, Obama was recorded saying, “I don’t consider this to be a good format for me, which makes me more cautious. I often find myself trapped by the questions and thinking to myself, ‘You know, this is a stupid question, but let me … answer it.’

Stars! They’re just like us!
I can’t wait to read the whole thing.
Merci, Hillery, pour le tip.

Election day messages from Obama & McCain

November 4, 2008

I’m on the mailing lists for both US presidential campaigns. In the last hours leading up to election day, both campaigns are understandably reaching out to spread the message one more time. The messages have the same goal, but they’re framed quite differently.

From the Obama camp:
A heartfelt, sweeping message. A simple and moving 2-minute video: images of Obama supporters all over America. It’s a montage of people of all ages & races, smiling, volunteering, waving and cheering:




The video is carried by Obama’s ringing voice, sincerely thanking Americans for standing behind him and humbly asking them to cap it off with one last push. There’s even a gorgeous image of him speaking to a huge crowd in the rain:


The man is a prince, I’m not kidding. Watching this I lost my breath a little. It’s online here.

From the McCain camp:
Ummm. A script to use when phoning people to convince them to vote… and a list of 10 people’s names and home phone numbers. Not kidding. McCain & Palin emailed me- and remember, I’m a stranger from another country, and I am not a registered US voter, let alone a registered Republican- but nonetheless, they emailed me a list of people’s names and their families’ home phone numbers.

Who’s to say I’m not gonna call them all night & breathe heavy into their ears? What’s to stop me from threatening or intimidating them? Way to go, McCain. Thanks to you, half the population of Ohio’s gonna be asked tonight if their refrigerators are running.

McCain emailed people's names & numbers to a foreigner like me.

CLICK TO ENLARGE: McCain emailed people's names & numbers to a foreigner like me.

What else is there to say?

One campaign makes you feel so amazing your heart tries to pump its way out your ribcage with love.

The other begs you to do some last-minute election night drunk-dialing.

Which one would you like to see in charge?

Oh I hope I hope I hope I hope.


Happy Hallowe’enie!

October 31, 2008

I have a couple of kickass Hallowe’en links to share with y’all, but first, friends, let me remind you of the true meaning of Hallow’een. It’s not scariness, or candy. The fundamental question for Hallowe’en is actually,

How can I make my costume sexy, even if sexiness is not at all relevant to my costume?

Alison and I went to an actors’ Hallowe’en party last night, which was filled with professional dancers and musical theatre performers. As you might imagine, most of them were partially nude. There was a sexy cop, two Playboy bunnies, a gaggle of Gladiators, a shirtless Batman, a sexy female Robin in a sports bra, sexy Terminator team complete with flashing LED bionic eye and sexy tight pants, and even a sexy Woodland Minotaur Lady-Goat with shaggy brown furry legs and a bare torso strewn with strategically-placed flowers.

Oh, also there was a slim 6’5″ dude wearing 5″ heels and a fluffy blonde wig, towering over the party as a sexy draggy seven-foot-tall Nomi Malone (that link is not the link we’re here to discuss, but it’s a tangent well worth clicking, friends).

One guy was just wearing a strawberry blond afro wig with his regular clothes, and I jokingly said, “hey, you could say you were Richard Simmons if you were wearing short-shorts.” He made a sort of sheepish face and I thought “oops, I embarrassed him,” but then I noticed he was removing his pants and rugger shirt, revealing a perfectly toned mandancer’s body in red hipster underoos and a tank top. Before the jeans were even past his knees he was already posing for photos. It was just that kind of party.

Artist's interpretation of that guy last night.

Artist's interpretation of that guy last night.

Alison fit right in, dolled up in her little pencil skirt and secretary hair- she looked like the first act of a certain kind of movie. But me? In my suit and flat shoes and 5-o’clock shadow? Not sexy. Unless you think clever political satire revealing the satirist’s unapologetic Liberal bias is sexy (which I totally do, can I get a what-what?) But honestly, this wasn’t that kind of party.

Let that one be a lesson to you.

Let that one be a lesson to you.

We’re going out again tonight and I’m totally planning to be Sexy Obama: the same hair, ears, eyebrows, and blazer…. paired with a bustier, miniskirt, fishnets, and high boots. I’ll let you know how it goes.

Oh wait, didn’t I promise you two good Hallowe’en links way back up a the top of this post? It was so long ago, I barely remember, but — Yes. So what I was going to say was, learn from my mistake: make sure your costume is sexy.

And here’s promised link #1, a great primer to get you started: PlanetDan’s Sexy Hallowe’en Costume Guide



(thanks to dziga for yet another killer link).


Today’s Wicked Ween Link # 2 reminds me of a trip I took to Germany some years ago. The German friend I was staying with sang in an a capella man-choir (I know!), and let me come to one of his rehearsals. They sang jaw-droppingly complex arrangements of American pop songs in their German accents, and I loved them so much I made my friend burn me a CD of their music, which I still listen to on occasion. Imagine 30 earnest German guys in perfect precision, belting out Right Set Fred songs. Amazing.

I was right back there in Bavaria when JP flung me this incredible YouTube video today. I think it’s the French accent that really does me in. I recommend viewing it in fullscreen, and make sure to watch ’til the Vincent Price voiceover, which kind of sounds like Jean Chretien doing a Vincent Price voiceover:

So there. Happy Hallowe’en, friends and neighbours. Don’t eat unwrapped candy, wear light colours so you don’t get hit by a minivan, and for the love of the Great Pumpkin, make sure your costume shows your navel.

Tina Fey does Sarah Palin

September 15, 2008

Did you see Charlie Gibson skewering an embarrassingly ill-equipped Sarah Palin in her first big interview since joining the ticket?

(ABC has made it difficult to get directly to the video- but look in the sidebar for the Palin-Gibson interview and click there to make it play.)

Now check out this gold.

Two Tough Ladies.

Fey and Poehler as Palin and Clinton: Two Tough Ladies.