Happy Birthday, Mr. McCain

John McCain turns seventy-two (72) today and what that means is if you were alive when the Hoover Dam was completed, Sada Abe was arrested after wandering the streets of Tokyo for days with her dead lover’s severed genitals in her hand or when Jesse Owens won his fourth gold medal at the summer Olympic games becoming the first American to win four medals in one Olympics, then you are too old to read this site and you should go back to watching your stories or looking for your teeth.

All the people I have ever known who were alive in 1936 are dead now, but I would like to say that there are several notable Americans who are still alive and kicking at the ripe old age of 72 alongside Mr. John McCain. Like Alan Alda of M*A*S*H fame. I never liked the show M*A*S*H because when I would come home from school I had a heavy rotation of cartoons to watch and when M*A*S*H came on I knew it was time for me to do my homework and if there is one thing I’ve always hated more than M*A*S*H it was my homework. I did like playing the game MASH, though, where you’d have to pick five boys, cars, colors, occupations, numbers and locations and then you’d pick a number and cycle through until it was decided that you were going to live in a shack in Boise, Idaho with Father O’Brien and own a brown Pinto and while you were working as a shoe salesman at Payless, Father O’Brien would be taking care of your 86 children. Life can be so cruel.

When I was in my first year at the University of Washington, I would wander campus on my way back from an evening Music class and attempt to smoke an entire cigarette without getting sick, a goal I had set for myself alongside going to German class at least once a week. I never managed, usually only getting about four puffs into my menthol before stubbing it out in Red Square and well, I dropped out of German. One night when I was feeling particularly dedicated to finishing off a smoke, I sat on a bench near the obelisk and lit up. I watched a stout figure in the distance come closer until Senator John McCain was standing before me, holding out a Virginia Slims cigarette, asking for a light. We sat together in silence, puffing and coughing away and when he finished, he thanked me, turned and walked back into the shadows. As he disappeared, I noticed he was balding and realized that he wasn’t John McCain, but John Tesh.


  1. August 29, 2008

    You obviously took up smoking way too late in life. If you start when you’re like 9 or something it’s a lot easier for some reason and makes homework more fun too.

  2. E's Mom
    August 29, 2008

    You see, but when you throw in that last line folks won’t understand that you really DID pop on some Live: At Red Rocks when John Boy came in to the Blockbuster all those years ago. And it was very funny.

  3. heathen
    August 29, 2008

    XUP – I guess you’re right, but the terror of what would happen to a young smoker at my strict Catholic grade school was too much of a deterrent. I guess there’s always hope for my own children. I’ll start them straight out of the womb.

    Carrie – that’s true, but this is the Internet, no one believes anything anyone writes on here, so it doesn’t matter that John Tesh hates listening to his own music. They’d never believe it.

  4. August 31, 2008

    my lawd you crack me up!

    it sounds like you gave up the smoking gig? i got sick when i first started too but like a good addict, i kept it up until i had resistance.

    how did you know my teeth were missing? and if you know that, can you tell me where they are?

  5. heathen
    September 1, 2008

    I think I’ve smoked about four cigarettes in my life, if you added up all the smoking I have ever done. It’s just not the thing for me.

    I don’t know where your teeth are, but I’d say that a good place to start looking is the washing machine. I find all sorts of things in there, like just yesterday I found my checkbook.

Comments are closed.