Now, I know you’re thinking, “What do watermelons have to do with politics?” Well, please read on for today’s enlightenment.
Many, many years ago in a galaxy far, far away…well, it was many, many years ago, but it wasn’t a galaxy, it was on a military ship in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean (and, no, it didn’t have sails…I’m not that old). Come to think of it, a military ship in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean seems like a galaxy far, far away. But I digress. I do need to mention though, that as improbable as the following story is, it is true.
One day after noon chow a group of us, as was the usual practice, sat on the deck in the berthing area talking. We weren’t trying to solve the world’s problems, just talking. In the middle of our conversation, Simon (yes his real name, maybe) said, “You know, it takes 23 ½ minutes for the sun’s rays to reach the earth.” We stopped talking and looked at Simon (we affectionately called him Simple Simon). His remark didn’t fit ANY conversation we EVER had on board that ship, but I couldn’t let it pass. I said, “No, it takes longer.” Now I don’t remember exactly how long it takes, and I don’t care, but Simon did and he seemed upset that I would question his statement. I told him again that it took longer and that I could prove it. He asked how and he never should have. Simon was intelligent but had a hard time finding the light switch. I told him that if it only took 23 ½ minutes, farmers wouldn’t have time to turn their watermelons over.
OK, here we go. Simon wanted to know what that had to do with it. I asked him if he had noticed watermelons that were dark green on one side and light green on the other, well he had. I told Simon that was because the farmers never turned them over because the Sun’s rays got to the earth too soon. I lost him there, so I had to explain that if the watermelons weren’t turned over that it would cause the price of Polar Bear furs to fall in Australia. The game was afoot!
Simon was confused and lost, but not ready to give up his 23 ½ minute statement. Others joined in explaining to Simon about the severe, adverse economic impacts that occurred if watermelons weren’t turned over. Before we were done, or Simon was done, we had the world’s economies in a tailspin because the Sun’s rays got here too quick and we did it straight-faced!
Now for the politics. We have two issues our country is facing, one is the government shutdown and the other is the debt ceiling increase. Both are important issues that need resolution. So here we are trying to have a rational conversation about getting the government functioning again and raising the debt ceiling before we default, then comes—
Rep. Markwayne Mullin (R-OK)—“This country isn’t ran by just one individual it’s ran by four branches, but three branches that are in control of this. As long as those three branches control it, then we all have to figure out how to negotiate. Not all of us is going to get 100% of what we want, but we should do what’s right.” Markwayne, please name the four branches of our government and then do what’s right—pass a clean CR.
Rep. Ted Yoho (R-FL)—“I think, personally, it would bring stability to the world markets.” According to Ted, the current government shutdown is “the tremor before the tsunami.” Do we really need a tremor before a tsunami, especially a financial tsunami? I don’t believe that Ted understands financial tsunamis.
Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX) believes that the government shutdown would actually keep the U.S. from defaulting on its debts if and when Congress refuses to raise the debt ceiling. Louie, please explain how this isn’t a default if the government is shut down. Does it mean that if I shut down my home and go on vacation that I don’t need to pay my bills because they just don’t come due?
When you’re trying to have an intelligent conversation and people say stupid things like this, just stop talking and look at them while you try to think of anything that would continue the conversation you were having. Or you tell them about watermelons and wait for the congressional hearings on the variation in watermelon colors.
See, watermelons and politics—told you so! Please feel free to add your personal favorite stupid political statement. For now, I’m headed out to my backyard to turn over my watermelons; I sure don’t want to be responsible for a fall in prices of Polar Bear furs in Australia.