Tuesday, July 1, 2008

From Broad to Dame, for the rest of her life

Original Link: http://paganpower.wordpress.com/2008/06/22/from-broad-to-dame-for-the-rest-of-her-life/

There’s a point when a broad becomes a dame—and Hillary Clinton has just earned her shoulder pads.

She’d been anointed a broad some time ago by circumstances. She was fighting with the boys on their turf—the Presidency. She dug in her pumps and rolled up her sleeves to expose a designer watch and a diamond ring. Just like the men, she could wear her fortune like a uniform. She wasn’t afraid of money; she knew the good it could do. She said, “Yeah, I’ve got it, and now I wanna give some to you.”

She didn’t say this to the boys, mind you. She said it to the spectators, to the hoi polloi sitting in the nose bleed seats on high, or the ones with their noses pressed to the canvas, they were squeezed in around the ring so close. She wasn’t making her case to the referees, she was making it to the hard-working masses who came to the match every four years to watch. She was a petite broad in a suit, and she looked so out of place—but the words, the words were right.

Those sweaty-faced line-workers turned their strained ears on high and listened to the woman with the boys swinging punches at her like crazy, and missing. They listened and they felt that thing lost in hard times. They felt hope. They liked this sassy lady and her proud belly laugh. They liked that she wasn’t too fussy about a low-blow here and there. They liked that she didn’t talk down to them even though she stood on a platform. They liked her a little because she’d married a man with their roots. They liked her a lot because she’d chosen their roots for her own.

Well, that broad took off her designer coat and the boys realized that she was getting comfortable while they were getting worn-out. They didn’t like it, this “girl” in their territory. The disdain didn’t stem only from her sex, but from that realization that she was setting the bar, and that bar was climbing far too high for them to reach, even on the very tips of their toes. So, they did what animals do when their territory is threatened. They banded together—and they attacked.

Twelve long months of practice rounds went by, with the broad in question no worse for wear. The scoreboard—the polls—said that she remained lengths ahead of her competitors. Still, they swiped and dug. Like mad dogs, they snarled about her clothes and their mates sneered at her husband. Some outside commentators went so far as to attack her child. This broad, while a classy lady to be sure, wouldn’t take that lying down. She struck in earnest for the first time and landed a knockout punch.

The boys inside the ropes winced, imagining when that delicate fist would land them on the cement, and withdrew, cowed by the femme in fuchsia. She could win this. She could take them out. It made them uneasy, made some afraid. Most jumped ship. A single one stayed.

This one thought he had something. While the lady spoke knowingly to the citizens below wavering from the long wait—and laboring still under enormous strain—he had sauntered slyly to the referees. They were predisposed to the broad. She and they went way back. But it was a hard time in the world and it didn’t take more than a few dollars for the refs’ whistles to go silent at the most inopportune times. Sold out for a whisper and a payday.

Hillary Clinton never stood a chance. It was when she realized that, when she saw the referees and the coaches of her opponent smugly nodding as she went down, that she became a dame. She could’ve stayed down after the first big fight was lost. Iowa was a blow, and one could say it set the stage for the rest of the Shakespearean affair.

However, giving up wasn’t in the blood of the working-man that flowed through her veins. Her father hadn’t made her a trampled rose, but a resilient one. The count went to 3 and she got back up, dusted off her pantsuit, and put up her dukes. New Hampshire was her round and she took it to the mat.

Super Tuesday was a draw. He got up at the five-count, she got up at the seven—but she got up at all, and that made the difference. She fought her heart out in every match after that. Oh, you should’ve seen the March 4th round—it was beauty and history all made up in a bow. Rhode Island—sucker punch. Ohio—upper-cut. Texas—rock ‘em, sock ‘em right on the chin. He got a kidney shot in—Vermont. She smiled, bold and fearless, like the great dame that came before her, Joan Crawford. For all her backbone, there was a bit of vulnerability inside, but she’d be damned and buried before she let it be seen. That title belt was made for her. Should’ve been hers that day, but the refs—the refs said, “not enough” and made them go another round.

May 5th, she stood in North Carolina and held out her hands to the people that came to see her. She looked like a president standing on the back of that pick-up truck, more so, she looked like a champion. In her Carolina blue, pin-striped suit, she traded the mantle of dame for Southern belle and it looked good on her. She knew it was a match not made for her shelf, but she came for the hopeful. She came to see them, because they, in their lesser numbers, wanted her to be their broad. She came, she saw, she inspired. And that night, though there was foul after foul perpetrated against her, she walked away with another match. This one, Indiana.

About this time, the “little people” in the mud around the ring, began to notice something strange. They noticed how the other guy’s gloves were heavy, how they hung low. In spite of looking like a washed out has-been, he still swaggered around the ring and roared after countless beatings. Their populist dame looked radiant for her part. Instead of winding down, she was getting fired up. She was sweeping matches. The twinkle in her eye was not to be ignored, but they could not help but feel a slight catching in their breath whenever the referees made a call. The call was always wrong when it was their girl, but there was no call against the cool, young kid without a title worth having to his name. This was fixed, this was rigged. This was cheating.

Their mama told them, that if they had to cheat to win, they hadn’t won.

The lady with the blonde hair stood poised for the title belt. It was narrow and petite—just right for her. She won another match by miles—West Virginia. She smacked him down in Kentucky, splitting the day’s difference when the kid took Oregon. She beat him again in a foreign ring. Puerto Rico had bowed down before the impressive dama and raised a Presidente in a bottle in her honor. On the final night, a night that was promised to be devastating to her cause, she rose one last time to the challenge of the championship. She owed the folks in the cruddy seats, who had waited eight years to watch someone give a damn. She came to the fight and she showed her stripes. She walked away with half the victory that night.

The kid had the title belt bestowed upon him by the sponsors of the match as the refs stood proudly by. Well, not the title belt, but one of them. This one had a woman’s name on it and was made with a woman’s figure in mind. He’d get his later, at the big ceremony, months away. But for the moment, he looked a terrible fool in an arena filled with screaming aristocrats, holding a prize above his head inscribed with someone else’s name.

On another stage, in another town, a triumphant dame that used to be just a broad with an attitude stood with a microphone and raised her arms up high. There wasn’t a belt in those hands, but there was something greater: the prayers of an entire body of people—and their belief in her. Their votes, their cheers, had been the saber that knighted her and made her a royalty of her own lineage. Not because she was better than them, but because she was just like them.

She was their street fighter, their protector, their advocate, their tried and trusted friend. She was their choice, however overruled.

That kid was gonna have a mighty pair of shoulder pads to fill. He was a fading mimic, a weak copycat, so half-hearted in his efforts to imitate his better that he was hardly recognizable as her least fit twin. He’d bounced around the ring and talked a lot of trash while she’d kept mostly stationary and checked for weaknesses. She’d been too tasteful to hit him where it hurt, but do believe she knew where that would be.

Still does.

The dame lingers in graceful repose while the rookie flounders on his feet. She can wait. She will wait.

There’s still the coronation.

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