Monday, July 15, 2013


There are some things in life demonstrably true yet unbelievable nonetheless. 
Softball-sized hail, for instance. Double rainbows. Adam Sandler's movie career. But then there was a little news headline on the bottom of the TV screen today that made me doubt even my own existence: ELIOT SPITZER WRITES LIFE-ADVICE BOOK.  

Wow. Was this from the same publisher that brought you George Zimmerman's Guide to Race Relations? Modesty Tips by Kim Kardashian? Gaining Respect from Your Fellow Americans by Eric Holder?

No, it had to have been a Nutella-induced hallucination. I Googled "ELIOT SPITZER LIFE-ADVICE BOOK" -- my fingers could barely type the words, they were so bizarre -- to confirm I was indeed seeing things right. Eliot Spitzer, the former Luv-Gov, now candidate for Comptroller,  who gave new meaning to political phrase "unwavering positions," had indeed entered the world of Dr. Phil. The local CBS affiliate's website had the lowdown:

The book titled ‘Protecting Capitalism, Case By Case’ offers, among other things, a series of rules for life which include placing a premium on loyalty and financial duty.

Loyalty to whom? Certainly not his wife. And financial duty, I presume, means paying your hookers extra when you talk her into giving you a blumpkin. (I'd rather you look it up than have me explain it.)

But there had to be more than that. The Wall Street Journal quotes from his book, "Even on the darkest day, it is better to have a spring in one's step, and a sense of adventure in one's mind, than to be overcome by the gloom and darkness of cynicism and doubt." I'm certain he thought that same thing a year and a half ago, on a gloomy winter's afternoon on an Upper East Side street off Central Park, when I responded to his uninvited hand wave and shit-eating grin by giving him the finger. It was the most satisfying, yet unfortunately fruitless, political move I'd made since contributing 20 bucks to Jerry Brown's presidential campaign in 1992.

Eliot Spitzer shares his favorite escort service numbers.

The Wall Street Journal piece unintentionally leaves the door open for plenty of ridicule on my part. For instance, the other Spitzer quote, "It is better to go down fighting than not to fight at all." I bet you Spitzer's black socks that his "dates" sure as hell went down fighting. We also learn Spitzer "eschewed traditional publishers" -- yeah, she eschewed, too, heh heh! Just the website of his publisher, Rosetta Books, offers further opportunity for juvenile derision. Its authors' names are listed alphabetically in two columns. To the direct left of Eliot Spitzer is Phillip K. Dick. Can. Not. Make. This. Up.

There must be something behind Sanford's
dopey face for him to land a hot tamale like that.
Luckily for Spitzer and especially his fellow sex maniac and mayoral candidate Anthony Weiner, Democrats are revved up for a sweep after 20 years of Republican rule (or, technically, 16 if you take into account Mike Bloomberg's switch to Independent in his final term). If one of their candidates was a can of turpentine, it'd be invited to the debates and featured in the New York Times Sunday magazine. Too, Spitzer can take comfort in Republican Mark Sanford's unexpected comeback after his week-long  "hike along the Appalachian Trail" somewhere in Argentina in 2009. A gay cabarello, he definitely wasn't. Just ask Maria Belen Chapur, his amante-turned-esposa.

"There was a man from
Sometimes it just comes down to name recognition. People will often go for the familiar over the new, the same way you probably brush with Crest instead of Tom's of Maine. Name recognition didn't help Caroline Kennedy's nutty, half-assed run for Senator in 2008, however, having believed that she could coast into office by her name alone. On the other hand, she's just been named Ambassador to Japan, presumably on her knowledge of the best East Side sushi joints. Be sure to take it easy on the saké, Caroline! You know how you Kennedys are when it comes to liquor.

Maybe Spitzer will escape the Caroline's fate. Stranger things have happened -- like anybody taking Spitzer seriously again. Let's not completely write him off. Just the other day, he assured Charlie Rose that he hadn't used a hooker in five whole years! And he admitted that, yes, prostitution is exploitative, and no, it shouldn't be legalized. I'm sure the people who ran the other prostitution rings -- that is, the ones he didn't use -- whom he threw in jail will be interested to hear that. Especially since they served time in prison while his punishment was hosting a talk show on MSNBC. 

Come to think of it, I'm not sure who got the better deal.


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