Saturday, July 2, 2011

Mamma Mia, John Wayne

Did Michele Bachman flub when she confused John Wayne, the Cowboy from Winterset, Iowa, with John Wayne Garcy, the Klownkilla from Waterloo, Iowa? Not really, She was probably not aware of Garcy. This, on the other hand, leads to the question whether she knows Waterloo, her assumed hometown, at all. And if not, why did she start her campaign there in the first place as opposed to, say, St. Cloud, the town she actually represents other than to score points for the Iowa Caucus? Then again, isn’t scoring points for the Iowa Caucus what this is all about?

Where was I? Right, John Wayne, née Marion Robert Morrison, the actor. So, John Cowboy Wayne was in fact born in Iowa, albeit about hundred and fifty miles away from Waterloo, whereas John Clownkiller Wayne was born in Chicago, Illinois. Not that much of a homeboy, either.

What bothers me more, however, is that Bachmann did not mean to refer to John Wayne at all. Wayne was a womanizing, twice divorced chain-smoking Hollywood actor who did not enlist in World War II, who had a severe drinking problem (after all, he was an Irishman) and an early love for Socialism albeit, later in life, he switched to White Supremacy. What Bachmann was referring to is the characters played by John Wayne; the quintessential Indian shooting, waggon-circling American cowboy. Quite a difference!

Actors do confuse themselves with their characters from time to time — Joey Trebbiani who believed that he was actually Doctor Drake Ramory comes to mind, or Ronald Reagan, who played a GI in WWII propaganda movies. Later, he told an Israeli Premier that he had personally helped liberate Auschwitz in, I assume, Burbank. CA.

Basically, confusing John Wayne with John Wayne is like confusing Tina Fey with Sarah Palin. Speaking of which, I met Sarah Palin as well, in Pella, Iowa, a dutch settlement and the blondest town I‘ve ever been, including Groningen. She attracted a lot of fans who all could see themselves voting for Michele Bachmann.

On a different, but really not so different note, Bachmann started her campaign in a town called Waterloo. That might be a bad omen. Or, maybe, she meant to evoke the Abba song about that girl getting married on a Greek Island.

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