Harry Reid So Boring That His New Yorker Profile Is About Sharron Angle
There was a time, probably, when a New Yorker journalistic profile was a very interesting thing to read. Maybe the noted figures of politics or media or sport were just a lot more interesting themselves, in the vague "sometime in the past" era we vaguely recall? Maybe the New Yorker writers were better? Whatever the case, the modern day profile in the esteemed magazine is guaranteed to be dull and just make us sad about the banal horror of Modern American Life. Harry Reid, it would be fun to learn a lot about him, right? No? Well let's do the profile anyway, something's got to go between "Talk of the Town" and the cat/psychiatrist cartoons.
As other feature-magazine writers have learned, there's nothing interesting about Harry Reid. It is not even interesting that he does yoga or apparently listens to the horrible records of the horrible dead-hippie band "The Grateful Dead," because all old white people with a little money do yoga and "jam to the Dead" or whatever they call it. These are the main activities at "senior retreats."
It is not even interesting that Harry Reid is boring yet has a powerful position in the U.S. Senate. Think back on the past twenty or forty years and try to even remember the name of another Senate majority leader. Just because Lyndon Johnson was a crazy Texan vulgarian Senate entertainer half a century ago does not mean the job expects or demands any personality. But every profile of a Senate majority leader must mention LBJ, because that big old redneck sure kicked ass!
Harry Reid is so dull that it takes 15 paragraphs for Harry Reid to make an appearance in his own profile (not counting a bland Reid/Senate anecdote by someone at a Sharron Angle event, in the fourth paragraph, and the pointless repetition of Angle's "Man up, Harry Reid" line in, we think, the 13th graf). And once Reid is finally there, the reporter is so bored with the subject that he describes the Nevada senator as a "country parson" -- marking the first time that phrase has been used in a periodical since 1955, when E.B. White employed the term to describe a very small cat who works as a psychiatrist, in single-panel cartoons. The whole profile is basically about Sharron Angle.
Harry Reid looks like a country par son, with a thin, vertically lined face, pursed lips, a short hank of neatly parted gray hair, and small wire-rimmed spectacles. Although he first ran for office at the age of twenty-eight and he is now seventy, he is still strikingly bad at the public part of his job. His voice is soft, with little resonance. When he’s talking to someone, he has a habit of looking down instead of into the person’s eyes. His gestures on a podium are awkward hand chops. He does not naturally embody the conservative view that he is an all-powerful caudillo.
(A caudillo is a gay Italian sausage you "chop" with your hands.)
Later, there is the usual stuff about the movie Casino (surprisingly, Harry Reid wrote and directed it!), and how there is a very small mining town and Harry Reid is from there, and that's about it. Oh one time he ineptly shot a rabbit, so he is also capable of being the senator from West Virginia.
Anyway, don't read this article, unless you want to know that "People go to Nevada to loosen the bonds of traditional society and try something new," which, of course, people quit doing a solid three years ago. Nevada has been hemorrhaging people and jobs ever since. What's left are unemployed drywall hangers who would leave if they could afford the bus fare, angry old whites watching their meager retirement savings evaporate like urine in a Las Vegas parking lot, and a desperate Latino service sector facing the highest joblessness rate in the country.
Besides, there's no "traditional society" in America in 2010 and there hasn't been for three decades. The stuff that made Nevada unique -- sex and gambling, mostly -- hasn't been unique since the nationwide arrival of cable porn and regional gambling towns/boats like Atlantic City and lotto tickets sold by the roll in every shit-ass convenience store, "for the schools," which produce a monstrous race of dumb hippos unable to even read each other's (misspelled) tattoos. [New Yorker]