The Odd Coupling

The theatrical version of The Odd Couple movie starred Jack Lemmon and Walter Matthau.  The TV version featured fictional divorcees, Tony Randall, as the fastidious Felix Unger, and Jack Klugman as the hard-drinking, womanizer and gambler, Oscar Madison. As part of the hilarious love-hate relationship between the two men was Oscar’s open disdain for the idiosyncratic and often annoying habits of Felix.  Two men could not have been more at odds and at the same time validating each other, than Oscar and Felix. That brings us to ‘Oscar’ Trump and ‘Felix’ Pence. It has been an open secret that Mr. Trump has ridiculed Pence’s religiosity and his relationship with his wife to underlings who sit around either the Oval Office or the situation room pleasing the comic-in-chief with phony laughter.  

I spent Sunday morning being subjected to a poorer rendition of the Odd Couple ensemble cast in the guise of Republican Senator Lindsey Graham, Republican Congressmen Jim Jordan and Steve Scalise along with the dreaded White House Adviser Stephen Miller.  Graham, who took his place at the Madison apartment Sunday morning talk show circuit poker table, once encouraged the Impeachment of former President Bill Clinton with these words, “if this body [Congress] determines that your conduct as a public official is clearly out of bounds in your role . . . because impeachment is not about punishment. Impeachment is about cleansing the office. Impeachment is about restoring honor and integrity to the office.” Graham is now lukewarm on a rush to judgment.

Jim Jordan, who has never sufficiently answered questions about his involvement in a molestation scandal involving the men’s wrestling team at Ohio State University, was called out by CNN’s Jake Tapper for repeating inexplicable GOP talking points accidentally released to Democratic operatives, to answer queries from the media.  The parade of Trump verbal pretzels is being led by Rudy Giuliani, who is more Trump’s Officer Murray Greshler than his so-called Roy Cohn.  For many the most memorable scene from the movie was Matthau hurling a plate of linguini against the wall and declaring, “now it’s garbage.”

For the first time in a long time, en masse, the Sunday morning head nodders challenged, fact-checked and refused to be gaslighted. Tapper, Stephanopoulos, and even Chuck Todd stood their ground.  I was fearful of hearing, again, the regurgitated reworking of “what about her emails” for another election cycle. Either both or one of two things is happening in the run-up to this election season. Reporters are tired of being targeted as “enemies of the people” or they feel foolish for being used as dupes in 2016. In either instance, I am glad the lights are on, and the gas is off.  

The famous Odd Couple intro I sat in front of my tv and watched weekly and tried to learn was a quick synopsis of how Oscar and Felix ended up roomies. The tagline was in the form of a question “Can two divorced men share an apartment, without driving each other crazy?”   I call on America to divorce the Trump Administration, and end this coupling “requesting that he never return!”

Vote in 2020 for Change.