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I find it at best silly and at worst dangerous that the chattering classes seem to be asking themselves what the separation of Al and Tipper Gore after 40 years of marriage ought to mean to The Rest Of Us.

The answer is absolutely nothing.

The Gores are creatures of the political/celebrity culture, and I doubt seriously if their marriage was ever anything much more than a tool by which to promote their, or more accurately, his attainments within that culture.  (It still amazes me that anyone thought that stage kiss he planted on her at the 2000 convention was anything other than a stunt for the cameras.) Gore has now conceded that he is never going to hold elective office again, so there is no real need to keep up the pretense anymore.  (Being without Tipper will not, on the other hand, hamper him in his current role as International Global Warming Nag.)

Some people, like Sally Quinn, essentially confirming my suspicion, are now arguing that the Gores’ acceptance of this and decision to part and pursue their own “paths” is somehow a good thing, or in her words, “a gift.”  To me, however, it only illustrates the probable hollowness of the relationship they had before.

Bottom line? If you’re looking for role-models in the moral or spiritual line, for Heaven’s sake don’t turn to politicians and celebrities.

My email quote-of-the-day source sends along a little ditty that I find quite amusing and thought my fellow port-swillers with a taste for the nautical might enjoy as well:

Me father was the keeper of the Eddystone Light,

And he slept with a mermaid one fine night.

From this union there came three:

A porpoise, and a porgy, and the other was me!

Yo-ho-ho, the wind blows free,

Oh, for the life on the rolling sea!

One night, as I was a-trimmin’ of the glim,*

Singing a verse of the evening hymn,

A voice on the starboard shouted, “Ahoy!”

And there was my mother, a-sitting on a buoy.


“Oh what has become of my children three?”

My mother then she asked of me.

“One was exhibited as a talking fish;

The other was served on a chafing dish.”


Then the phosphorous flashed in her seaweed hair.

I looked again and my mother wasn’t there.

But her voice came echoing back from the night,

“To Hell with the keeper of the Eddystone Light!”

Yo-ho-ho, the wind blows free,

Oh, for the life on the rolling sea!

– “Me Father Was the Keeper of the Eddystone Light”

(traditional English sea-faring ballad)

Yo, ho, ho!


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June 2010