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Ask Bill About It

They say 'calcubrating' like it's a bad thing

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Mr. Hamperstein told me tonight I had a very insightful insight about Hillary and that I should write it down before I forget what I said, so as soon as everyone left, which was possibly because of me telling them not to flush the toilet because I've been having some problems with plug-ups lately, so I thought as long as I'm writing it down, I might as well write it down on an email and send it to you to see what you think of my insight. Oh, did I tell you I have your email number or whatever it's called? Yes, I do, but don't get mad at that nice girl who gave it to me because I told her I was your long-lost sister from Italy who hadn't seen you since you were a baby and that I wanted to surprise you. They haven't been gone even 15 minutes yet, but I didn't want to waste any time because as Mr. Hamperstein said, whenever you think of something insightful, you'd better write it down because insights can disappear from your brain quicker than one of those telephone numbers they shout about four times in a row from a television commercial like the one I saw last night about a miracle weight loss pill. And wouldn't you know it, by the time I found a ballpoint that still had any ink in it, I forgot the number.

So my insight about Hillary is that maybe it's a good thing she is calibrating, like everybody says she is, especially Dottie. As soon as we started the discussion tonight, that's all Dottie wanted to talk about, which was how calibrating Hillary is and how she can't believe anyone could even think about voting for her, like of course I am. And Dottie knows it. I hear a lot of people on television call her calibrating, too, and it makes me mad they do, until tonight when I had to use the bathroom right in the middle of the discussion, and while I was in there, it hit me. What's so wrong with calibrating? Don't we want a president to be calibrating? Isn't a calibrating president a lot better than having one who never thinks about what he's doing? I could hardly wait to get back out to the discussion before they changed the subject, which Dottie does all the time before I get a chance to say my ideas. And wouldn't you know it, that's just what she had done while I was in the bathroom, shaking the flapper thingie in the tank so the toilet wouldn't overflow. When I came out, Dottie was talking about how that awful Donald Trump was going to really shake things up when he's president, and Mr. Hamperstein was putting on his coat to leave because he hates Donald Trump almost as much as he hates Dottie. So I sort of blurted out that I'd a lot rather have a calibrating president than one who can't even concentrate on anything longer than it takes to start another war, and what's wrong with calibrating, anyway? Or something like that. I can't remember exactly how I put it because I was trying to say it fast enough that Dottie wouldn't interrupt me. Like she does all the time. And that's when Mr. Hamperstein said it was a very insightful insight and that I should write it down. Which I am doing right now.

So is this an insight you might be able to use? I know if anybody can, you can, Willy Billy. Oh, and also, this is Anonymous from the Cope'-Latest-Column Discussion Group, in case you haven't figured that out, so you don't have to worry about me telling anyone else your email number, or whatever it's called, because I am very trusty about keeping secrets. Ask Dottie if you don't believe me. She has been pestering me for your phone number ever since I told her I had it, but she can't get it out of me, even when she threatens to tell the discussion group my secret recipe punch is really just apple juice mixed with Mountain Dew. That's how trusty I am.

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Wow, Anon! That's the longest e-mail I've gotten this week. Or maybe ever. But to the point. Yes, I agree with Mr. Hamperstein. Your insight is very insightful. But I'm wondering if, rather than "calibrating," you mean to say "calculating." They are close, those two, only the former means—loosely—to refine the adjustments on something to ensure it's running smoothly, while the latter is something they call women who dare to be smarter than they are. It's thought to be a sign of deviousness, but if we really think about one who "calculates all the possibilities," whether it be in her choice of words or what might come from a presidential decision, it is obviously something we would hope for from our leaders. No one can tell me that Abe Lincoln wasn't calculating up a storm all the way through the Civil War. Or that FDR could have ended the Depression and won the war without calculating the hell out of things. Besides, we've tried a president who was so uncalculating, he was content to let Dick Cheney do all the calculating for him, and look where that got us.

Now Anon, as you have done something no other reader has done before—to finagle my email out of a first-day intern at Boise Weekly—allow me to give you my new address. It is bcope@takeaflyingf***.org. Now, as you probably know, you must immediately wipe all traces of the old address—the one you used to reach me here—from both your computer and your memory, or the new email won't work and your computer will crash and probably blow up. You don't want that to happen, I'm sure. It's worse than an overflowing toilet, any day.