Thursday, January 03, 2013

Close the "-gate"

     Right along the Potomac River in the Foggy Bottom neighborhood of Washington, D.C., there lies a complex of buildings that sort of look like cruise boats sitting on the land.  Without the part that goes under the water, of course.  And one looks like a cruise boat on land without the underwater part that is shaped like a doughnut.  Go ahead, take a look and prove me wrong.
Looks like The Love Boat without the boat I guess this is what love looks like.  If you don't see this image when you look at your wife, husband, or child, then you don't love them.  Sorry.
      So anyway, this sort of awful looking example of 1960s narrow-tie-and-horned-rim-glasses awful architecture is on the National Register of Historic Places mostly because it is the infamous Watergate Complex.  Begun in August 1963, and not completed until January 1971, the Watergate Complex is a group of five - count 'em five - buildings that break down thusly: one office building, three apartment buildings, and an hotel/office building.  It was this last building, the hotel/office one, that in 1972 housed the headquarters of the Democratic National Committee on the sixth floor.  It was this office that was burglarized, the act that led to the eventual resignation of President Richard M. Nixon.  And that's the only time that has EVER happened.  And it made Gerald Ford president.  And caused Chevy Chase to get famous on Saturday Night Live for impersonating Gerald Ford.  And it led the awesome movie Dick to be made.  But I digress.  The worst thing that came out of that break-in was that the complex led its name to the overall scandal, so that the whole affair is called the Watergate Scandal, or just Watergate.
Teapot Dome, which neither looks like a teapot or a dome.
     Why is this bad?  Well fuck me running.  Sorry, I just always wanted to say that.  The reason that is bad is because it was the biggest national scandal since Teapot Dome.  So now, the media - who are assplows - have decided to tack the suffix "-gate" (which is not a real suffix by the way) onto the end of every long running news story or scandal.  So the New Orleans Saints bounty scandal became "Bountygate," the firing of eleven Republican U.S. Attorneys by President George W. Bush became "Lawyergate," President Bill Clinton had four "-gates" -  "Pardongate," the very politically incorrectly named "Wampumgate," "Filegate," and "Travelgate."  President Reagan had something called "Sewergate" which sounds like something that if you open it lets sewage out into your backyard, and "Debategate" which rhymes so isn't so bad.  Then there was "Koreagate" and "Bonusgate" and three separate "Troopergates."  But it goes beyond politics.  There was "Closetgate,""Nipplegate,""Climategate," something called "Slutgate" that should have been more interesting than it really was, "Bladegate,""Grannygate,""Sonicsgate," and of course "Tollalagate," which involved buying expensive towels. There have been so many things labeled with the term "-gate" that there is actually a Wikipedia page entitled "List of scandals with '-gate' suffix" that I wish I would have found before I went out and found all of those examples on my own.
    If you spend even one moment looking through that list, you will agree with me that this is out of fucking hand, Company.  You have to agree.  What is shows is a severe and crippling lack of creativity from just about every news outlet in America.  Do you want to know what the largest modern political scandal in Italy was called?  Tangentopoli.  Which means approximately "Bribe City."  Brilliant.  Meanwhile we are stuck with something called "Spygate" which happened not once, but twice, and did not involve a single spy in the traditional, James Bond sense.
    Now I am not suggesting that we give a new an unique name for each scandal that happens around the world.  Our news media are not smart enough for that, and they have way too short of an attention span anyway.  But the least they could do is change things up, and I submit that we look to Teapot Dome as inspiration.  There was also a scandal known as "Operation Plunder Dome" which sounds pretty cool, doesn't it?  I think that "Sonicdome" sounds a lot cooler than "Sonicgate."  Ditto "Slutdome" and "Nippledome."  My, I think that gave me an erection.  I would be riveted to both of those scandals, and the gentleman's clubs that go by those names will appreciate the free advertising I am sure.
     Just think about it, because something has to change.  I can't take any more "-gates."  I just can't.  It is on the verge of becoming an endemic problem, which as things currently stand, would have to be called "Gategate," and that would cause a rip in the space/time continuum.  We might as well just cross the streams.  Or, we could just get creative and close the "-gate."  Yeah, let's just close the "-gate."

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