From your first cigarette to your last dying day

In my formative Social Studies years I aspired to ace the Current Events quiz every week.  Back then we heard reports of Mao's Cultural Revolution and of his wife's Gang of Four.  They were causing  horrible suffering for the Chinese people far beyond the ability of our junior high minds to grasp.  Still, it hit me as strange to hear President Obama refer to a Senate "Gang of Six" working on the budget/debt ceiling crisis.

Sure, I enjoy reading about the outlaw gangs, those Jameses, Youngers, and Daltons.  They weren't nice boys, and they weren't Robin Hoods.  I wouldn't want them in charge in Washington.

Gang is a troubling word.  I'm too young to remember the Little Rascals of Our Gang beyond a vague image of Alfalfa and the phrase "Teacher, Miss Pretty".

"West Side Story" is my favorite movie  I've never seen.  I played the soundtrack LP over and over on my parents' mono record player while pouring over the album cover and liner notes, imagining all the scenes.  Do I want the Jets and Sharks negotiating tax deductions and loopholes?  No, but I will snap my fingers until the Senators deal!  Those guys sure need a choreographer!

Disney's "Robin Hood" is a movie I've seen way too many times.  I can only wish the Senate Gang of Six included a bear voiced by Phil Harris and a very cute fox dressed in green:

  • Little John: You know somethin', Robin. I was just wonderin', are we good guys or bad guys? You know, I mean, uh? Our robbin' the rich to feed the poor. 
  • Robin Hood: Rob? Tsk tsk tsk. That's a naughty word. We never rob. We just sort of borrow a bit from those who can afford it.
  •  Little John: Borrow? Boy, are we in debt.

What else could Obama call the "Gang of Six, or maybe Seven"?  Long ago I had a large number of high school studentes who came to the condo every Friday for a noon meal.  I called them the "Lunch Bunch".  We need a better collective noun for leading compromising bipartisan statesmen, and we need it fast.  Merry Men?  Let's make every elected representative in Congress wear tights until they work out a deal.

© 2011 Nancy L. Ruder


Kim said...

Yes, pantyhose in August heat! They deserve it. And wool sweaters, too.

Kathleen said...

I, too, have been troubled by the word "gang" and by the accident that a poetry group I was in a while back referred to itself as the Gang of 4. It turned into a sort of Gang of 6, too, in a timely but still troubling fashion. Perhaps I will suggest we call ourselves a "bunch" when/if next we meet.

Hm, but "Don't get your panties in a bunch" comes to mind. Don't get your poets in a bunch...?!

Collagemama said...

King Arthur had a Round Table... The expression, "Put on your big girl panties and deal with it," is another thing I'd like to tell Congress.


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