Thursday, May 26, 2005

Thomas Friedman wants a little more night music

I read my husband Thomas Friedman's column and could only think: "That's what happens when I make the mistake of thinking I can listen to my music. I'm rocking out while hand washing Thomas Friedman's boxers -- not just the silk ones but the cotten-poly blends as well -- and he's ripping off Lenny Kravitz."

Ever since we spent 8 days on the road to hell and heartland, Thomas Friedman has taken to referring to himself as a refugee of the road.

Honestly, you'd think Thomas Friedman just got off the chitlin circuit opening for the Ike & Tina Turner Review the way he keeps moaning about "life on the road." In his column, I noticed that eight days became six weeks. I asked him about that and Thomas Friedman replied "poetic license. Didn't you learn anything from Laura Bush posing as a Desperate Housewife!"

I had tried for days to use something similar with his shorts but Thomas Friedman insisted that he cannot feel sexy in drawers that smell like the heartland.

I suggest that maybe he could use them during playtime to pretend to be Kevin Costner and we could play Field of Dreams instead of Iraqi invasion but Thomas Friedman shot that idea down.

"Okay," I said still trying, "What about Brad Pitt in A River Runs Through It?"

Though this did lead to a twenty minute discussion of whether or not he should get highlights, it was otherwise a waste of time.

"What about," I was grasping at straws here, "Reese Witherspoon's boyfriend in Sweet Home Alabama?"

"Why not Witherspoon!" Thomas Friedman howled. "I am America's sweetheart! More so than that Judy Miller!"

Now who can argue with logic like that?

"Okay, you be Reese," I told Thomas Friedman who looked happy for about ten seconds before he started bawling.

"But, but," Thomas Friedman sputtered while blowing his nose on a kitchen towel, "she's got fat arms!"

To get him to stop snotting all over the kitchen towels I just washed, dried and folded, I gave up.

"You know what? I'll wash your shorts by hand."

Blowing his nose in a fresh kitchen towel, Thomas Friedman nodded.

So I got to work on washing his shorts by hand in the kitchen sink while Thomas Friedman tried to settle down. He's been so emotional since I started him on those vitamins.

As I was scrubbing one particularly nasty stain, I heard him chuckle.

"Betinna," he giggled. "What's the matter with Kansas?"

"I don't know. What?"

"It's flat and it smells!" he chortled gasping for breath. "And so are the people!"

"Now Thomas Friedman," I said as gently as possible, "we didn't go to Kansas."

"So what!" Thomas Friedman exploded. "The joke is funnier this way. Remember Laura Bush slaying them with her jokes about being a Desperate Housewife!"

"Thomas Friedman," I said as calmly as possible, "if you put that in your column, you are going to offend a lot of people in Kansas."

"So what!"

"So people in Kansas buy books too."

"Gosh golly darn it!" Thomas Friedman hollered kicking the kitchen table. "You always spoil my fun! I hate you!"

"But you love Judy Garland and The Wizard of Oz and Dorothy is from Kansas."

"So," he whined pouting. "I love 'The Trolley Song' too. Does that mean I can't write about mass transportation?"

Sniffle, sniffle, sniffle went his nose. Stomp, stomp, stomp went his feet. Zing, zing, zing went my mood as he headed out of the room.

I plugged in the casette player in the kitchen. Thomas Friedman swears it is the very latest in home stereo equipment. Fishing the Lenny Kravitz tape out of from a drawer, I was set to finish washing those shorts and forget all about Thomas Friedman.

That may be a little harsh. He did buy me the Lenny Kravitz tape at Goodwill.

I should probably stop here to explain.

Goodwill is a store Thomas Friedman takes me to for most of my shoes and pantyhose (for dresses, he just buys me sheets which he says make me look exotic). Thomas Friedman says Goodwill is a very exclusive store and that is why he never worries that we will bump into anyone we know there.

One time, I thought I swore Judy Miller. Thomas Friedman did not agree.

I said, "Thomas Friedman, that is either Judy Miller or someone has stolen your Judy Miller wig!"

But Thomas Friedman told me there was no way it was Judy Miller because the only thing she needs is some integrity and you can't purchase that second-hand.

So there I am washing Thomas Friedman's dirty drawers and singing along with Lenny Kravitz:

Does anybody know how many lives we've lost?
Can anybody ever pay the cost?
What will it take for us to join peace my friends?
Does anybody out there even care?

I love the song, it's called "Does Anybody Out There Even Care?" I love singing along with that.
But then this morning, I'm out of excuses and Thomas Friedman keeps pestering me to finish reading his column.

Read this:

Is there any constituency that should be clamoring for a sane energy policy more than U.S. industry? Is there any group that should be mobilizing voters to lobby Congress to pass the Caribbean Free Trade Agreement and complete the Doha round more than U.S. multinationals? Should anyone be more concerned about the fiscally reckless deficits we are leaving our children than Wall Street?

That's my husband Thomas Friedman attempting to "borrow" from Lenny Kravitz.

I pointed that out too and boy, did Thomas Friedman get mad. He started insisting that the world could use "a little more night music!" and that the paper could have more than one in-house poet.

He was so upset, I slipped two vitamins into his prune juice and patted his tummy until he felt better. Tomorrow's another column and Thomas Friedman is still blocked. He says that is a sign of a great artist. When Thomas Friedman starts talking about "great artist," that usually means I'm going to end up having to write his column for him at the last minute.