Saturday, July 29, 2006

You rang?

Sometimes Mo Dowd gets it exactly right, but not in her review of the G8 Players' production of "Helzapoppin 2006," I'm afraid. Stevens, the butler in "The Remains of the Day," as portrayed by Anthony Hopkins, had a dignity that Tony Blair will never achieve. You saw him hovering around his loutish master -- if Stevens, or Hudson, or even Lurch, were addressed in that offhand manner ("Yo, Blair!") he would have given notice instantly. Tony looked more like one of the Queen's corgis hoping for a table scrap. I wouldn't be surprised if mild seismic activity in the vicinity of Blenheim Palace proved to be Mr. Churchill turning over.

It was a bizarre summit for a bizarre time. Vladimir Putin evidently thought he was the host of a Friars Club roast, cracking wise about Blair's pounds-for-peerages scandal as if everything in Russia weren't for sale, including seats in the increasingly irrelevant Duma. The German chancellor probably wishes she had brought her pepper spray. Another milestone was passed in German-American relations:

1962: "Ich bin ein Berliner."

1983: "Mr. Gorbachev, tear down that wall."

2006: "I thought you were gonna ask me about the pig."

Me? No, no, I'm Canadian. From Tranta. Go Jays, eh?


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