With that smidgen of self-deprecating humor that he hopes will transform him from pedant toad into charming curmudgeon, John Derbyshire, writes in the latest National Review of the difficulties of life on suburban Long Island. Were you to read it, you'd understand the significant sacrifices that the 101st Keyboarders make for us. Huntington or Basra? They're both damned scary.
It seems poor Mr Derbyshire has to paint his garage. Even worse - the evil environmentalists want him to properly dispose of the chips of lead paint after he removes them. 'The Derb' knows that calling lead dangerous is just liberal hysteria, and would happily feed it to his two children, but he is afraid of the New York Secret Police - they're not that different from Sadaam's Security Forces, after all. He then runs into the problem of actually painting the thing.
Operating in the free market seems to make this problematic - his choice is between hiring people he can afford (who won't speak English and who will do a terrible job while they play "Death Metal at you from the radio in a dilapidated, salacious-decal-festooned truck"), and a nice company, one which is way over his budget. Because he is a true conservative, not a Bush neo-con, he wants to stay under budget, while still not having a person of color on his land. (1/4 Acre) He thus comes to the conclusion that he must do it himself.
Then the temperature rears its ugly head - after all; the average daytime temp in Huntington last month was 52 degrees. Far too cold for 'The Derb.' "I am not short of advice here, only of will, and of tolerance for outdoor work in midwinter."
Last year, I asked you to send additional armor to protect our soldiers in Iraq This year, please send 'The Derb' some warm socks. Please. He just can't tolerate it.
James Brown would undoubtedly have left 'The Derb' his cape, had he only understood.