I’m sorry this is, as usual, late. It took me awhile to find my eyeballs after they rolled out of my head. That was Sunday afternoon (OK, it was Monday) when I was reading the Sunday Times Week-in-Review section, wherein one Maureen Dowd actually chastised First Lady Michelle Obama for being away on her husband’s birthday. Seriously. I’m a great admirer of Dowd’s accomplishments, though not so much of her columns. Frequently clever and usually wickedly funny, they’re not especially sharp or insightful. For me, anyway. This one, however, was deranged.
How much has Michelle Obama sacrificed for her husband’s career? How much did she give up to get him where he wanted to go? From where I stand – or kneel on all fours, desperately raking the rug for my ocular orbs – it looks like the woman has done more than her fair share for her man. No one knows what goes on in anyone’s marriage, including her own sometimes, so we certainly don’t need to be reminding a professional woman, a wife and mother, what she owes her husband on his birthday. What, was he turning 10? Did he get his first pair of big boy pants? No, the man is 49, and I’m willing to bet he’s missed more than a few family birthdays over the course of his marriage. “[A]t moments when you think Michelle might make her husband toast, or better yet a martini, she’s often off on a girls’ trip.” Note the use of the word girls’ here, that’s code. You’re supposed to picture Michelle drinking overly sweet cocktails with some flighty gal pals as they laugh overly loudly about cute boys. In reality, she was showing her daughter the world while acting as an excellent ambassador for our nation. Oh, Maureen, this is beneath you. It’s insulting, it’s chauvinistic, and it’s silly.