I swear, it was an accident -- I have never watched Hannity

I was channel surfing and stopped when I saw James Richard Perry staring straight ahead, being interviewed -- if one can call it that -- by this weird looking talking head with bad hair.

His name was Hannity --- oh, him -- I've heard of him, but that wasn't what caught me, and Hannity wasn't quite repugnant enough to make me keep on moving this time as I always have when seeing that face in the channel surf.

Jimmy Dick was fascinating to see.
He wasn't there in person, but on remote, and was staring straight into the camera.
Weird expression, but one I'd seen before.
I used to produce local tv shows.
Regular people, not actors.

He was afraid.

He was afraid the camera could see behind his smiling mask, could see some secret that no one was allowed to see.

He wasn't in the same room where he could use his big boy body energy to override. And he wasn't used to that.

Being on tv, oh yes, he was used to that.
But being on tv and being asked questions about who he was when he couldn't play the questioner -- no.


He was covering something that was really shameful -- shameful to him, anyway.
Nothing outlaw -- he's Texan.
Nothing like hookers or strippers or gambling or drugs ..
those wouldn't need anything more than that great big smile and a "We-e-ellll, you know."

Getting D's and F's at A&M?
Hey -- being dumb as a dead snake is ok in Texas.
Lots of really smart people there -- I lived there, worked there, met them, worked with them -- some of smartest people I've ever met -- worked there -- got to know the way things worked, guys are tough, but there's a decency in the code -- and they don't mistreat dummies.

Killing someone?
Hell, he's got 237 notches on his belt -- what's one or two more, done personally?
He wouldn't want that out there, but it wouldn't make him ashamed.

It's about what might be shameful to him, shameful in the eyes of the men he pushes around.

And like Nixon, who projected waves of paranoia, dark deeds covered up with scowls and gravitas, Jimmy Dick covers up the shameful whatever it is with Good Ole Boy smiles and shoulder slaps. And all that just makes people want to know -- "Hey! What's he trying to cover up?"

My guess -- gay.

I'm not nearly the first person to look at the bodybuilder's chest and shoulders, the controlled posture, all the smiling and nodding at other candidates during debate, almost as if he spoke no English but wanted to be friendly.
Giving the big smile and the thumbs up.

And once that possibility crosses the mind "I wonder -- is he gay?" -- it settles in and become more than just a possibility -- becomes perceived reality.
The mind becomes Nancy Grace ... Clothes, posture, hair, etc... yeah, it all fits, and fantasy supplants reality.

Politics is about mythic image.*

History is driven by mythology, and the great poet Charles Olson pointed out that mythology is "that which is said about that which is said."

(What does that mean? In other words, it didn't matter what Nixon did, and it didn't matter what he said -- "I'm not a crook" -- what moved history was what people said about what he said.)

So it doesn't matter what Jimmy Dick really is -- gay or straight.
And it doesn't matter that some people -- like me tonight -- say "I think he's in the closet."

What will happen with him depends on what people say about statements like that one, doesn't matter if it's a real fact or not. And it's kind of poetic, that his career may be affected by statements that are total fantasy. Like the ones he makes.


* Nixon looked like the guy in western movies who ran the bank and stole land from widows and orphans. Daniel Ellsberg looked like a hero, like the hero he was. Nixon's fall was predictable and inevitable.


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