November 9, 2010

Kicking off Bush Week with Mom, Baseball (and the Brother or Sister He Never Had)

Jsa / AP

How did NBC lead offBush Week,” having scored the kick-off interview to the week long marathon of Bush re-entry and reconstitution? Well, they did it with baseball, Texas, motherhood, a focus on ancient history and a radically graphic anti-abortion mental picture. In this shot, taken Aug. 19, 1989 in Kennebunkport, we see two peas in a pod — as we’re prompted to imagine another pea out of the pod, so to speak.

The brilliant stroke in the new Bush memoir, and the clever stroke with Bush’s lead off interview and the photo accompanying NBC’s lead article, was to use the first day of the re-introduction to highlight Dubya’s recounting of how he drove his mother to the hospital while she was holding her miscarried fetus in a jar.

I know I should have been feeling manipulated, but we’re talking morning TV, the affable Matt Lauer, and a more genial George (not to mention the baseball and apple pie), so instead, I just felt empathy — and the celebration of life. Didn’t you?

(11/11 2am PST – slightly revised)

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Michael Shaw
See other posts by Michael here.

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