Backstory: For Election 2012, my platform is me

I would like to take this opportunity to announce my candidacy for the 2012 Democratic or Republican nomination. (Your choice, America.)

I am doing this today because so many candidates got such a late start in the 2008 race.

By entering at the last minute, the 2008 candidates have been forced to spend too much time dealing with issues. I say, "Issues, shmishues." Personal relationships are what choosing a president is all about.

That's why my campaign slogan, "Getting to Know Me," is simple but deep. (Not unlike me.) That is why, with five years ahead of us, you will get to know not just Chuck, but my family and friends. On my behalf, all of us are joining hands to meet face to face with the American voters, their children, and their pets.

You will get to know my wife, Lady Janet, and her English accent, which she will be happy to teach you at her "Talk Like Helen Mirren" seminars. Many of you will attend a film with my son, Jon, and his girlfriend Genny, where you will learn how a Chuck win will bring down the price of a large drink and box of Goobers at your multiplex.

Others will get to know me through my friends. And isn't the desire to be friends with a candidate the real issue in any election? Abe Lincoln or Gen. George McClellan? No choice. Teddy Roosevelt or Judge Alton B. Parker? Are you kidding?

Yes, American voters will have the chance to meet either a member of Chuck's family or one of Chuck's buddies. It could be a get-together with Dick, who will rub your feet in a reverse or forward circular motion, depending on your preference. Or Larry, who will not only lose at golf for you but will let you make fun of his putting.

Gary, David, and Paul will graciously open their homes for bar mitzvahs, weddings, and Sweet 16 parties. They'll put on a waiter's jacket and pass crab puffs, pigs in blankets, and those squirts of pink stuff on a cracker.

Nick will assure you that your children are gifted. Robert will tell you how good you look, no matter what your spouse says about your haircut. And Joel has pledged to make even the shortest person feel tall.

Now I realize that my "Getting to Know Me" campaign is slightly unconventional. But politics, like cable television, is whacky. So let's put aside the issues. You know they'll always be there. But how often do you get a chance to eat crab puffs while getting your feet massaged?

In the words of my campaign song:

Getting to know Chuck.

Getting to know all about him.

Getting to know Chuck.

Getting to know Chuck likes you.

See you at Thanksgiving. You want white meat? You got it.

Chuck Cohen, an advertising writer, lives in Mill Valley, Calif.

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