Out of the purple prose and mixed metaphors, errant insults and flattery of the boss, emerged Newt Gingrich — oral action hero: Newt Grinrich’s press secretary wins this week’s award for the most mixed metaphors. James Taranto explains,
The Puffington Host, whose founder was an early proponent of a Newt Gingrich presidential run, quotes a response from Gingrich’s press secretary Rick Tyler to a query about media coverage of the kerfuffle we discussed above:
“The literati sent out their minions to do their bidding,” Tyler wrote. “Washington cannot tolerate threats from outsiders who might disrupt their comfortable world. The firefight started when the cowardly sensed weakness. They fired timidly at first, then the sheep not wanting to be dropped from the establishment’s cocktail party invite list unloaded their entire clip, firing without taking aim their distortions and falsehoods. Now they are left exposed by their bylines and handles. But surely they had killed him off. This is the way it always worked. A lesser person could not have survived the first few minutes of the onslaught. But out of the billowing smoke and dust of tweets and trivia emerged Gingrich, once again ready to lead those who won’t be intimated by the political elite and are ready to take on the challenges America faces.”
This thing goes bad with the second word. If we’re discussing sheep, the word is not “literati” but “critterati.” And the ovine partygoers are sipping cocktails and emptying their clips, exposed by their handles amid dust of tweets? There is only one man alive who can write this badly: Thomas Friedman.
On the other hand, Tyler, or whoever actually wrote this, has a point about sheep at cocktail parties. They’re really baaad conversationalists, and it’s awkward as hell when the waiter comes around with those delicious lamb-chop lollipops.
One time we went to a cocktail party at a Washington establishment and the place was filled with sheep. What’s more, the ratio was terrible–of the few humans in attendance, almost all were guys. It was so bad, we complained to the proprietor. To his credit, he was apologetic. “There will be many other nights like this,” he promised. “But there will never be another ewe.”
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