"How About You Read Bob Herbert's Treatise On Misogyny While I Look For A Better Pic Of The Paula Jones Penthouse Cover?"

Illustration for article titled "How About You Read Bob Herbert's Treatise On Misogyny While I Look For A Better Pic Of The Paula Jones Penthouse Cover?"

Surprise! Identity politics is the topic du jour. Well, that and how Iraq would like our military to keep its surge on until the Jamie Lynn Spears gives birth to her first grandchild or whatever. Today the New York Times found a few Latino kids to talk about how their parents were too racist to let them date black guys/vote for Obama. Depressing. Also Bob Herbert visits a Nevada whorehouse and gets depressed, we catch up with the Girls Girls Girls of Clintongate and talk pornography and get depressed. Hey, Paula! Grab a Prozac and stay awhile!


MOE: So as badly as we may have fucked up Iraq would like to renew our contract for the next 10 years but how about we talk about something more fun than that.


MOE: Like Monica, Paula, Kathleen and Juanita!

MEGAN: Oldies but goodies.

MOE: Oldies but plastic surgery-preserved and enhanced!

MEGAN: With the stipulation that Kathleen is sort of obviously suffering from mental illness and so our job is to hope that she gets treatment and not to make too much fun.
I think Monica's probably still without, but the other women: completely surgically "enhanced"

MOE: Well to be fair to Juanita I really have nooooo idea. Okay, so: race to find a better image of Paula Jones than the one here!

I did not turn "Safe Search" on
You know I don't use it, and you are maybe not a good person.

MOE: Crap, I forgot I had moderate safe search ON.
what did I miss????

MEGAN: The Penthouse spread was apparently not her first experience with public nudity.


MOE: Hahaha I love how when you check your Google settings you can click "Esperanto" as a language."

MEGAN: Oh, my soul hurts now.
But this might be my favorite because it strikes me as funny.


MOE: Oh.My.God.

MEGAN: Let us just tell people, as a public service, do not do a Google image search for Paula Jones without your Safe Search function enabled.


MOE: Wait, did you read this story? Apparently Bill told Monica he wouldn't go for Kathleen because of her small breasts? Because Kathleen had confided in Linda who told Monica?

MEGAN: I mean, Kathleen's cat disappeared years later and she thinks Hillary's minions catnapped and killed it.
Also, her husband killed himself that day.


MOE: Here's what I think: he pawed her, the subsequent smear campaign made her batty.

MEGAN: He pawed her on the day her husband blew his head off. I'm not sure the smear campaign was required.


MOE: Oh, that's totally true. Her life was full of problems and her story was full of problems and she was a desperate, desperate woman. But I think it's a vicious cycle. What was her husband's deal anyway? They just said they had financial problems of "his own making."
And no one preyed on the weak more than Linda Tripp.

MEGAN: That I agree with. She was no one's friend.

MOE: There's CYANIDE in them Christmas sleighs
And she was possibly the last person to see Vince Foster?


MEGAN: She sold out every single person she befriended for... something.

MOE: Yeah, she couldn't even pay to get her own work done.

MEGAN: It was never her face that needed work, it was her soul. She was Dorian Gray without the protrait.


MOE: Oh MY GOD you have to read the story.
The author goes to LInda Tripp's Christmas shop and Linda claims she's not Linda!!!
I mean, I've never been to that particular shop, but Christmas shops are small.

MEGAN: Well, and she's been on the news that she owns it!


I look at the woman who calls herself Karen and she looks back, her mouth twitching. She bears an uncanny resemblance to the pictures I have seen of Tripp, postplastic surgery. Could this be Linda's sister? But her sister isn't called Karen.

I explain who I am and that I had heard Linda owns the shop. "She does actually - with her husband," says the woman who calls herself Karen. That must have been the husband I had glimpsed going into the back of the store earlier wearing lederhosen, just as he is pictured in the leaflet advertising the store.

But no, it cannot be him because, as Karen tells me when I ask if I can speak to them: "They are not here right now. They won't be back until tomorrow."

But you are here. You are her, I want to say. But then I remember what Linda Tripp told Monica when discussing what she would say if she was asked under oath about the affair with Clinton: "I would do almost anything for my kids, but I don't think I would lie on the stand for them." Linda Tripp would not pretend to be someone else when a reporter came in.

"She doesn't speak to the press at all," says the woman who calls herself Karen, but then adds: "I am told they are going to do one interview," for the tenth anniversary. I wonder who told Karen. Linda?


Also, that's kind of faulty logic, but whatevs.

MEGAN: Maybe all those years of evil-doing have taken a toll on her mental health?
I don't think I could have an entire conversation about myself in the third person without messing it up.


MOE: Jesus Christ the whole thing is so creepy.

MEGAN: I mean, Gennifer Flowers seems almost like the normal one, or Monica.

MOE: Um, so you wanna read Bob Herbert's treatise on misogyny while I look for that Penthouse cover?
Well, the difference is that Gennifer is supporting Hillary while Monica is not.
Or that Gennifer is blond and Monica is brunette


MEGAN: Gennifer is comfortable with her sexuality and what she did and Monica is not.

MOE: Right, the Gennifer affair was downright wholesome.
Whereas you get involved with any powerful middle aged man at age 21 and it's going to haunt you. I mean, I IMAGINE.

MEGAN: Luckily, I'm not really attracted to powerful men.

MOE: Hey, here's something I didn't know:

The Starr team did not want much of the information they had uncovered to enter the public domain, because they believed it was too salacious and they wanted to preserve the dignity of the presidency. But when it was sent to Capitol Hill the House of Representatives decided to release it all before even reading it. "Our position was that it was not our job to tell the House what should or should not be made public. We believed that the House - especially because we had specifically warned them in the transmittal letter of the sensitive nature of the facts - would act responsibly and at least read the referral before releasing it."


Yeah powerful men have a tendency to act with a sense of sexual entitlement that irritates the shit out of me. I had a job interview when I was 21 with a man who told me he had a hardon just talking to me. And I REALLY REALLY needed a job.

MEGAN: I've never really had someone treat me like that in an interview or supervisory situation, but I come across as the kind of bitch who would sue.


MOE: I lived in Hong Kong and didn't really pay taxes so, you know, you deal with shit like that.

MEGAN: Good point.

MOE: Um so apparently now Hillary is being compared to Tracy Flick
There's a theme in here...somewhere...
Oh my god and speaking of Hillary did you get the most epic of all epic Robert Morrow, Clinton expert emails last night?


MEGAN: Naturally. That guy is just so... strange.

MOE: Well, he is mentally ill.
Is Ken Starr the lone oasis of sanity to have emerged from Team Rabid Puritan?


MEGAN: Wow, that would be strange, wouldn't it? Because, frankly, anyone that details someone else's sex life in that much written detail and isn't writing erotica but legal briefs obviously has some issues with sex

MOE: Right, it's kind of shocking to me he didn't turn up in a bathhouse somewhere. He's helping free death row inmates and there was a kind of sweet story a few years back in the Post about his work with, like, "the children." That said, all of the dudes emerged relatively unscathed. Newt Gingrich is happily married to Wife #3 and has refashioned himself as some sort of environmentalist, Joe Lieberman is hanging with the GOP frontrunner, Bill is saving the world etc., and every woman entangled in the whole mess ...well, it's messy.


MEGAN: I mean, that's not surprising to me at all. I think women (particularly of that generation) are far, far more conflicted about their own sexuality than men are.

MOE: Yeah, which is why I'm not quite sure I'm with Bob Herbert on the prostitution thing. Sex workers in this country, at the very least, GET something for being objectified.
Did you read Tracie's thing on "cerebral porn" yesterday?


MEGAN: I did. I mean, I think it's a hard line.
No pun intended.
Because I've worked near the downtown strip clubs here, and you can walk by in your nice suit looking not at all sexualized and the first thing every guy does when walking out is look directly at your tits.

MOE: Yeah, I don't know what is cerebral about getting off. I generally have to stamp out whatever vestiges of intellect are left at the end of the day.


MEGAN: I think if porn was less filled with fake plastic women that might as well be dolls, it would be a little less open to the criticism of misogyny.
Because, yes, it promotes a fantasy: that women are all huge breasted, incredibly thin, collagen injusted lipped sluts.

MOE: Sometimes I'll watch porn and I'll start THINKING "Why am I doing this? What about this is helping me achieve this release? Who are those girls? Where do they come from?" It's the bonerkiller to end all bonerkillers. That's why I'm going back to sex as soon as I can find a willing partner.


MOE: Yeah I think like anything — psychopharmaceuticals, for instance — it's just strange to argue that all porn is good, or that excessive exposure to it has no potentially deleterious effect on the way we see sexuality. So I'm with Herbert there. On the other hand I'm a fan of openness. Porn after a breakup is like Prozac after a breakup: you just don't want to become dependent. And yes, while porn and erotica can be thought-provoking or cerebral or an artform or whatever, it's .. uh ... well that's sort of missing the point of what it's meant to achieve.

MEGAN: I keep trying to think of a good response, but I don't have one. Also, now I'm like depressed and horny at the same time and have to work.


MOE: Depressed/horny is sort of the steady-state of the endlessly-recovering-from-the-last-breakup. Oh, to be married!



@athertonmerriweather: I'm a fan as well. She's got the prettiest hair, ever.