Notes from Hell, Volume 99:
“I just remembered why I stopped reading your comments years ago. Your topic caught my attention and against my better judgment, I read it. Quite an interesting article until I got to the end …
“He may not be your choice as he wasn’t for others, but he is still the president of our country, so grow up and put on some big man pants and accept it!”
— Debra Hester Owens
First of all, thanks for reading my column titled “A nude beach in Palm Beach County is barely plausible,” even if the reading was simply due to a temporary memory lapse on your part. Have you tried ginkgo biloba?
Apparently, your reading misadventure of my column was turning out just fine as you cruised by the part about the head nudist being named “Dickey.” The alarm bells didn’t start ringing until the last line, in which I casually suggested the beachfront at Mar-a-Lago as a suitable site for the county’s nude beach.
This, for some reason, set you off, including to tell me to “put on some big man pants,” which is strange advice coming from somebody who just enjoyed reading a whole column of nude-beach humor.
But what I mainly want to address is your contention that I don’t “accept” the presidency of Donald Trump. Nothing could be further than the truth. Nobody has accepted the presidency of Donald Trump more than me.
Not only do I accept it. I revel in it. I embrace it. I pay the mortgage with it.
I write about him just about every week. He’s the raisins in my oatmeal cookie.
You’ve got it backward. Trump’s great for me. He’s endlessly entertaining, outrageous, incompetent and dishonest — in other words, a columnist’s dream.
He’s just not great for you and most other Americans.
“Thank God there are other writers with much more interesting and informative newsworthy articles. Yours I don’t pay attention to as you are always pushing your Trump hater agenda … Here is a challenge for you, write something positive about what Trump has done in such a short time in office.”
— Carlos Farina
My, oh, my, Carlos. That is a challenge.
Does Anthony Scaramucci count?
“It’s the greatest privilege of my life to live in the same county as the guy who’s gotten the most done in the shortest period of time since FDR.
“Keep it up; I’ll continue not to read you.”
— Norman Berkowitz
Acting Attorney General Sally Yates. National Security Advisor Michael Flynn. FBI Director James Comey. White House Communications Director Mike Dubke. Director of the Office of Government Ethics Walter Shaub. White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer. Senior Assistant Press Secretary Michael Short. Chief of Staff Reince Priebus. And White House Communications Director Anthony Scaramucci.
All of them, done. And in record time.
And that’s not counting Attorney Gen. Jeff Sessions, whom Trump wants to get done, not to mention Special Counsel Robert Mueller, who may still not be done hiring lawyers to investigate all that Trump has done.
Mueller’s most recent hire, Greg Andres, the 16th lawyer on the team, has previous experience in the U.S. Justice Department running the fraud unit that targeted illegal foreign bribery.
You can almost hear the opening strains of the theme song from Dragnet: “Done-da-done-done.”
By the way, Franklin Delano Roosevelt isn’t in Trump’s league.
All that FDR got done during the first months of his presidency was to convene the Congress for an emergency three-month session and get lawmakers from both parties to approve the Federal Emergency Relief Administration, the Civil Works Administration, the Works Progress Administration, The Tennessee Valley Authority, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, the Civilian Conservation Corps and the National Industrial Recovery Act, the Emergency Banking Act and the Farm Credit Act.
Those are just some of the 15 major bills, er, excuse me, I mean, “burdensome federal regulations,” that Roosevelt got through Congress in his first 100 days in office. Disgraceful government overreach.
“You know when I was growing up, I was taught that if you cannot say anything nice about someone, don’t say anything. Have you ever written a nice column about anyone?
“Your articles may be humorous, but about the President of the United States of America.”
I’m going to float the idea to my editor and see what she says. On some days, instead of my column running, the paper will have a large empty space on the bottom of the page, with the words, “Frank has nothing nice to say about anybody today.”
But to prove to you that I can write something both humorous and nice about somebody, I have written a limerick just for you, Barbara.
Barbara, the kindliest reader
Said on Trump I ought to be sweeter
So I heaped on the praise
for all of my days
And now I drink gin by the liter.
Sorry, Barbara. I tried.
But as Deborah Hester Owens might say, I was doing great until I got to the end.