So I spent today in Pasadena at Politicon, which had been described by my friend Mike Moodian as “Comic-Con meets politics.”
Being that: A. I’ve never attended Comic-Con; B. I like politics; C. Quirky opportunities should never be bypassed, I applied for a press credential. And (gasp) was granted one.
So, again, I spent today in Pasadena at Politicon. And it was, well, weird. And fun. And off-putting. There were a solid number of people in those red MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN caps. There was a decent Donald Trump impersonator and an even better Kellyanne Conway impersonator (who was a man, to my delight). There was a big convention hall filled with booths for people who believe pot should be legalized; who believe Lyndon LaRouche is the truth; who believe pink vagina hats will forever be en vogue. MSNBC was handing out free cups of coffee. Michael Steele was making the rounds. Quaz alum Guy Benson was selling and signing books. I received about a dozen free stickers, and stood THIS close to a guy who may well have been Rob Reiner.
Most of my time, however, was spent listening to people talk. And talk. And talk. And talk. And talk. Though this is, technically, a political event, what struck me most is that Politicon is—more than anything—an event for professional talkers. There were panels atop panels atop panels, with the same people we see every day on cable TV talking about the same subjects with the same words and the same emphasis. Don’t get enough of Paul Begala explaining Hillary Clinton’s demise on CNN? Good news! He was here—explaining Hillary Clinton’s demise. Don’t have your fill of Tomi Lahren doing her best to irk liberals. Fantastic! Tomi Lahren was here—irking liberals. Roger Stone wants marijuana completely legalized—as I’ve heard 100 times already. Ann Coulter says outrageous things! So OUTRAGEOUS that I’ll capitalize OUTRAGEOUS! Twice! Then some people booed. And some people cheered.
What Politicon reminded me is that I’m fucking exhausted of having and hearing the same six conversations on an endless loop. (1) Trump is Satan. (2) Trump isn’t Satan. (3) Democrats failed to understand working whites (4) The Republican health care debacle was a Republican health care debacle. (5) Hillary blew it. (6) Remember how dignified Obama was.
We get it. We get it.
Did I enjoy the day? Absolutely. I had a really excellent chicken wrap, Mike Moodian is terrific company, the Coulter-Ana Kasparian was actually pretty good entertainment, if you stare at Roger Stone long enough you see the ghost of Leslie Nielsen and, hell, who doesn’t like stickers?
But, again, there has to be more to life than professional talkers talking about the same shit they always talk about as we listen to the professional talkers talking professionally about being professional talkers.
Where’s Dan Quayle when we need him?