I have managed to tear myself away from the House, M.D. Drinking Game (drink every time it could be Lupus, drink twice every time there’s a computer graphic of someone’s disgusting insides) just in time to notice that it’s time for midterm elections. You have probably just emerged from the “Schuman Mentions House” Drinking Game [drink] only to discover the same thing. Like the exams they’re named after, midterm elections are overblown, underwhelming and exist mostly to provide sororities with an excuse to make stupid signs (“Rock UR midtermz _! Heart, _”). Except that by “Kappa Kappa Gamma” I mean “Big Oil, Karl Rove and George Soros” and by “stupid signs” I mean “the most ridiculous series of campaign ads since the last time there was an election of any sort, and if you haven’t bashed your TV in yet you are a either a masochist, watch TV for a living, or just love House that much, drink.”
Sure, there’s a chance the Democrats could regain one or two (or however many there are) houses of Congress, but, to paraphrase the Kappa Kappa Gamma sisterhood song, who gives a shit? Say Karl Rove reemerges from the primordial ooze having produced nine terrorist attacks, a serial rapist/murderer whose killing spree originated the day he was allowed to marry his homosexual life partner, and a dollar-a-gallon gas epidemic, and the Republican majority increases. Things continue as they are and the Apocalypse comes sooner. Mike Seaver and the rest of the faithful are sucked up to Heaven naked and the rest of us get seven years of blood-rivers and the reign of the Antichrist. The only bummer there would be missing the season finale of House [drink].
On the other hand, say Rove gets distracted at the Evil Genius PowerPoint Seminar and Fun Fair — like, they have a bouncey-bounce shaped like Hillary Clinton and he gets one of his legs stuck in it — and the Democrats take back the Senate. Now they’ve got two years of decision-making power and 2008 will come just in time to blame them for whatever Karl Rove cooked up when he finally freed his leg. Some racist deer-hunter jock will be elected President, and the Apocalypse will come approximately two and a half years later than it otherwise would. And what will we really accomplish in those two and a half years? Three awesome new pledge classes for Kappa Kappa Gamma? Leggings going back out and then coming back in again? God help us all.
Not to sound cynical or anything (cynicism went out with boot-cut jeans, and the jeans I’m currently wearing are so skinny that my ankles have the same “soft-serve ice-cream cone effect” as my midsection), but the outcome of the midterm elections gives us what dead critical theorists call a “false choice,” which is critical-theory-talk for “two options that suck.” Sort of like the recently-surfaced sex tape featuring the classy exploits of Dustin “Screech” Diamond: we have a “false choice” either to watch it (and develop the facial dexterity necessary to gnaw out our own eyes), or not to watch it (and spend the rest of our lives wondering if what they say about Jewish men is true and Screech is hung like Zack Morris’s old mobile phone). We can either vote for a Democrat, and hope the reclaimed Senate doesn’t blow its wad just in time for President Giuliani, vote for a Republican and hope we never have to explain what a “false choice” is to some 19-year-old PFC’s grieving parents, or not vote at all and get jealousy-induced heartburn every time we see someone wearing a little “I voted!” sticker with a little check mark on it. As Derrida once said, that’s like a choice between skinny jeans with zippers or skinny jeans with no zippers — and that’s no kind of choice at all.