Saturday, January 10, 2009


On the Watch for Obama Time

He may have a bitch of a job before him, but already the iconography surrounding the man portends great things.

My colleague Lisa's daughter wanted only one thing for Christmas: an Obama waving watch. Unfortunately, they were all sold out. More are supposed to be ready for inauguration day, but we'll see. Lisa certainly hasn't given up on Fifi's fondest wish. I even sort of wanted one for a time, but being the old and practical bag that I am, I knew that I'd tire of the waving thing quickly... it would turn into a sort of windshield wiper on the wrist, and besides, it would probably crap out well before the end of the first term.

What does 60-plus years on the planet get you? An advanced case of consumer jaundice, that's what.

So I contemplated the novelty watch. I had a Mickey Mouse watch when I was nine. Would that ever be worth something today, had I not childishly worn it into the Pacific for some serious salt and sand damage.

I wondered: was there a George W Bush watch? Well, yes, to Google it would certainly yield lots of Image Results. However, they were mostly in the form of George W Bush watching something, usually military reviews and the like, or the media watching George W Bush, likely where he and Laura were going, whether or not there was actual hootch in that so-called non-alcoholic beer, etc.

But no watch. If anybody has one (perhaps rushed out in the wake of 9/11), it's probably stuffed into some archive, waiting for the market for such treasures to be stimulated by a stretch of historical forgetfulness, that precursor to all periods of nostalgia. I did find this dandy Mission Accomplished Bush Action Figure on eBay, though. It does feature a tiny chronometer on W's wrist, less than the size of a dime, and someone has thoughtfully inserted an electric toothbrush up his ass, no extra charge. 3 days left on this must-have auction item!

But other than Obama, whose election has spawned an entire generation of watches, the waving one being an action figure of sorts, the novelty watch seems to be more about Betty Boop than it is about Dubya.

Purists, of course, will want to move beyond mere idolatry around political figures and declare their nonpartisan passion for Jesus Christ, who among other radical political acts, changed Dubya's heart, just in time for the debate season at the turn of the millennium. Those were the days! Of course, then Dick Cheney changed it right back for him, but if he had purchased this handsome watch, he might have never lost his way.

In the meantime my best friend in California has sent me a countdown keychain... not on the number of days Bush has left in office, (which she also sent, in her time), but the number of days till Obama takes office.

Thanks to his work ethic (and the lack of same in that flaccid-bottomed lame duck, who saves it all for clearing brush), he already has.

But what the hell. As I always say, Any excuse for a party.

If I were to buy a novelty watch, it might be one that depicts the shoe thrown @ Bush's head. I know people want tokens & memorabilia, but the merchandising and constant asking for money from the Obama camp is getting old. It is like a sports marketing franchise.

Anyway.... perhaps this watch is just waving goodbye to Bush, after the inauguration it will do the fist bump?
Watch MSNBC for just an hour and you'll see a ton of ads hawking all sorts of Obama crap.
From china plates with his face on them to coins with his profile painted on them, there's a plethora of Obama crap out there for the taking.
Who knew Obama would so quickly join the pope and JFK as one of the kitsch world's greatest hits?
I can only hope that they'll be advertising like mad on the 20th, since I will happily park my ass before a TV on inauguration day. I can already hear the urgent voices of announcers: Own a bit of history with this finely crafted Obama beer stein!

the ironic thing is that a broken chimpy watch still would not be right twice a day. i suppose the hands would just lie at the bottom, pointing to everything else as the reasons for the watch's failure.

have i wished you a happy new year yet, lulu? even if i have, no harm in doing it again--happy new year, lulu dear!
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