legal 5.07

My First Annual Christmas Column

First, a correction: Last month I wrote about the Pop-a-Top Pub. I was irate because the OLCC had proposed to suspend its license as punishment for permitting “lewd conduct” by dancers. I still think that the OLCC should suffer from boils and swelling as punishment for being such weenies, but I am glad to report that, in this case, they offered the club owner the alternative of paying a fine, that the club owner did so, and that the Pop-a-Top will therefore remain open. Drop by and say hello!

Chestnuts roasting on an open fire... Just getting in the secular, nondenominational, winter-holiday period spirit. Depending on when you are reading this, and who you are, I wish you a Merry Christmas, a happy Hannukah, a satisfactory Twelfth Night or a good President’s Day. That oughta cover it. [Ed. comment: Hey! You missed Kwaanza and New Years!]

People get low in spirit at the holidays, so I have decided, as a public service, to prepare and offer to you My Holiday Gift List of People Who Are Worse Off Than You. I don’t mean people who are poor in worldly goods. I mean people who merit special attention because, as someone once said, “no-one’s life is a complete waste: they can always serve as a horrible example.” These folks have demonstrated such a streak of puritanical, prudish, privacy-invading priggishness that holding them up to ridicule is the least I can do.

So here they are: the people I’d most like to see roasting along with the chestnuts. Some of them I’ve mentioned before, but the holidays are a time for remembering old friends, right?

The mayor of Falls City, Iowa, who eavesdropped on a private conversation and then made a citizen’s arrest of a teenager for using “profane language." In order to respect his sensibilities, my present to him is a non-verbal middle finger gesture.

The Iowa legislature, for banning nude dancing even in juice bars. The OLCC says they have to regulate “lewd behavior” in bars because you’ll all run amok from the combination of booze and breasts. In Iowa, they figure you’ll run amok even if you are only drinking prune juice. To them I give a nice, fruit-juicy Hawaiian Punch.

The Oklahoma City cops, for breaking federal laws and defying common sense in order to track down those criminals who had rented the video of The Tin Drum, a sensitive story of life during wartime which happens to feature some midget groping. People who are equally offended by sex and swastikas are a rare breed, proving that cousins shouldn’t marry.

Assistant Virginia Commonwealth’s Attorney William E. Fitzpatrick, who told a jury that a video was obscene because the makers deliberately tried to titillate its audience by making the female actresses appear as “young as possible.” I am unaware of any video in which the actresses are made up to look as old as possible. I am giving Mr. Fitzpatrick a case of Max Factor Naked Blush.

Rep. Lynn Snodgrass of the Oregon House, the chair of the Rules Committee, for sponsoring legislation to declare every April to be “Christian Heritage Month,” to recognize her version of revealed religion as the One True Church. Lynn’s version of Christian heritage is, of course, not compatible with sexual enjoyment. In order to expand her horizons, I offer Lynn one Gideon Bible with the Song of Solomon printed in oversized type so she can’t miss it.

Last, but hardly least, the OCA, the love of my life, which has not one but two ballot initiatives circulating for the 1998 season. One would allow the government to define who is and isn’t a member of your family. The other would ban most abortions. The OCA hasn’t had a real win since 1978 but they come back every election season like the flu, or a bad rash.

To you, dear readers, I wish much better fates, mostly involving warming up by the fire with somebody you love, or at least like a lot.

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