Maddow Widowers’ Support Group, open for business

mwsg When the esteemed Dr. Rachel Maddow, Ph.D. (that’s Pretty hot Dyke, for those unfamiliar with academic acronyms) blew onto the national TV scene as a commentator for MSNBC, tons of gals’ undies got all up in a wad. And I mean that in a good way.

Coast to coast and up and down the internets, the Sisters of Sappho were all: Jumpin’ Jehosephat! It’s one of us up there! And of the butchie stripe, heretofore The Gender That Dare Not Speak Its Name! (At least it dare not speak its name on the television set, and according to reports by those who watch the series, if you were to search for this in between part of the gender spectrum on even something like The L Word you would be searching a long, long, long time.) But back to Dr. Maddow: She’s smart, we all said!  Plus she’s leftie!  Plus she’s not apologetic about any of the above!  I even got a little giddy myself (exhibit A).

There was just one eeensy, teensy problem I hadn’t anticipated, in my initial glee: having one of my kind representing on the TV set meant that I got to witness my beloved watching one of my kind representing on the TV set.  (Cue sound of record player needle being scratched violently off the vinyl.)  Yeah. So when we all laugh at Dr. M’s rapier wit, the beloved laughs just a leeetle bit harder than I do. You get the idea.

Okay, now before a bunch of you accuse me of being a wimp, I have two things to say. One: you’re right!  Wimp wimp wimp! Monsieur Wimp, c’est moi! But two: Hey! Gals like me, we don’t have any practice!  One of the side-effects of being virtually invisible in the sphere of popular culture is that you don’t have the opportunity to inure yourself to your sweetie swooning over tempting, if improbable, alternatives to yourself.  Which, surprise surprise, Dr. Maddow’s appearance nightly has provided.  You know, alongside probing and insightful analysis of breaking national and international political events.

What’s a gal to do? Carpe carpem, that’s what I say! Don’t suffer alone, quietly! Suffer with others, noisily! And thus was born the Maddow Widowers’ Support Group. Membership is open to all who find themselves bobbing adrift in the sea of their sweetie’s Dr. M-induced mooning.  Most of us MWSG members will be mannish lesbians, but let’s face it, straight women and gay men have found themselves mooning over Dr. M too.  So befuddled straight and gay guys are more than welcome. I am a very strong advocate of coalition-building across difference.  Basically, come one, come all, long-faced and cranky.

Why am I uniquely qualified to call the MWSG to order?  Glad you asked.  My mind has been boggled, lo these many months of Dr. M’s ascendency, by an eerie number of coincidences between my biography and that of the esteemed left-wing lesbian commentator.  To make matters more excruciating, each one is a “close but no cigar” type deal, again making me the gal for the job.  Allow me to draw your attention to just some of the highlights:

  1. We grew up in the same town, only I’m older. By like ten years or something. Unfortunately, we’re in the age range now where older is not better. It’s just, like, with more gray hairs, crow’s feet, and a paunch.
  2. We went to the same high school, only when I went, it was still staggering in the wake of Proposition 13’s devastating public education budget cuts, and it had absolutely no academic distinction whatsoever. In fact, my recollection was, it was crappy (sorry, but that’s my recollection.  Could be that my entire high school experience would have been crappy anywhere, what can I say).  Later it won some kind of “California Distinguished School” award, but when I was there it was distinguished only by a trend-setting “smoking section.”  Now of course it’s distinguished by being Dr. M’s high school alma mater. (Is there an emoticon for “bitter”?)
  3. In high school, I was on the swim team and the basketball team.  Sounds nice and jock-y, yes? No. Because Dr. M? Swim team, basketball, AND volleyball.  One-upped again. To make matters worse, she’s described as the type of player who was “frequently injured diving for balls.”  We all know there are two kinds of people: people who dive for balls and people who would never consider it.  I’ll just stop there.
  4. She attended Stanford University as an undergrad, whereas I went to that low-cost public school across the bay that is constantly complaining about Stanford and defensively citing our greater # of Nobel Laureate professors.  You brats.
  5. She attended graduate school at Oxford University as a Rhodes Scholar, and completed a Ph.D. in Political Science. I, on the other hand, was in a Ph.D program  in the great upper midwest at, again, a fine, low-cost public school.  Dropped out before orals, meaning I can officially only place M.A. after my name.  Don’t even get A.B.D. (All But Dissertation). I haven’t devised what M.A. stands for, but sadly, Pretty hot Dyke is already taken.
  6. One of the several jobs I had after grad school was one that entailed advising would-be Rhodes Scholars’ at my alma mater. Again, I think I’ll just stop there.
  7. I’ll finish with the biographical factoid that I find the most devastating. I like to think I’m tall for a gal — 5 foot 10 and a half inches, and don’t think I don’t count that last half-inch.  And guess what. Go ahead, guess how tall Dr. Maddow is.  No, really, guess. I’ll wait.  Uh huh.  5’11”.

I think I’ve made the “single white female” case pretty well here.  Now the only question is, what activities should the Maddow Widowers’ Support Group undertake? Uplift is my main concern. Healing. Helping equip ourselves with the skills and capacity to move on, and with self-love.  We could do other stuff.  I’m open to suggestions.

24 thoughts on “Maddow Widowers’ Support Group, open for business”

  1. Well, seeing as I get most of my non-Internet-based news from Dr. Maddow and NPR’s Wait, Wait, Don’t Tell Me, I’m not sure I qualify for your membership. As one of Dr. M’s fellow Oxonians (albeit not a Rhodes), however, I will suggest an activity for your group, involving one of that institution’s most revered practices, the pub crawl. Choose ginger ale/ginger beer if you’re so inclined, but go for cameraderie and a night out, especially 9-10 p.m. EST.

  2. O, Dana, the saddest thing of this whole sad charade is that I, too, watch her as often as possible. We even got ourselves a TV this past fall, both for the debate coverage and what we felt increasingly sure would be the presidential election night and inaugural coverage (didn’t quite have the same impact in YouTube-sized chunks) and, yes, for Dr. M. So I’d have to do my crawl after 10pm Eastern. Which means I would be crawling with that special sad sack look on my face.

  3. Okay, up popped this page and the girlie chuckled.

    She said, looking at the accompanying graphic, “What’s that?”

    I said, “A sad face.”

    She said, “It doesn’t look like a sad face.”

    I said, “Does it look like Baba?”

    She chuckled again and smiled and nodded, and said, “Yeah. It does.”

    See what I’m saying?

  4. I have to join your group, alas. On one recent Valentine’s day, I headed up to bed to find a little red envelope sitting underneath the remote control. The note, in frilly penmanship, highlighted all of the lovely evenings we were about to enjoy. I looked over at BioMom quizzically. “Turn it on!” said she. I did and up popped not a fox but well, yes, I guess a fox. A fox in a hot butch dyke’s (frilled up a little for primetime) clothing!!!

    This is the equivalent of the 1950s guy giving his gal a bowling ball for Valentine’s day.


  5. This reminds me of one time when I was little. My dad was upstairs, I asked him what he was doing. He said go tell your mother I’m upstairs sticking pins in a Harry Reasoner doll. Maybe they sell Rachel Maddow dolls? I’ll try to find you one. And a pin. Or two.

    (Looking around I’m probably the oldest person here—he was an ABC network newscaster back in the day who reported, among other things, during the Nixon administration and subsequent meltdown).

  6. Vilkommen, bienvenue, welcome, you both! Thanks for reading. And thanks, St, for the warning? I think?

    And, hey, Karen: I totally remember Harry Reasoner. Just not at the age where he’d be a thrilling addition to marital dynamics. Am standing by for the doll.

  7. okay well i’ve been yakkin about her for a year now…..
    not sure what the activities of your RM Klatch should be, as i feel compelled to watch her, i consider her the amazing history/civics teacher i never had.
    plus some.
    but at my house we are both fascinated, and do a critique of the ill-fitting blazer-du-jour.
    i always wished “queer eye” would have first helped out their lesbian sisters FIRST

  8. Yes, and after the blazer would come the loving, sympathetic notations of each new haircut, and how femmy the make-up gal was able to style it this time. Since folks have seen her in her regular, civilian garb, we know that she dresses normal. You know, like you and me.

    I think one of the more fun hidden camera moments would be her in her make-up chair. What happens with the give-and-take. Etc.

    No, but I don’t think the MWSG should eschew watching her. Alas, we probably all feel as cozy as can be, what with her feeling so gosh darn familiar. And truly: the political analysis and angle. Unparalleled on the TV set.

    Now I wouldn’t mind engaging in a team-building activity, like making some kind of MWSG home brew, as a populist antidote to the high-falutin’ mixology. Or, maybe some butch-to-butch cooking classes. Since, as I discovered on Valentine’s Day, a really, really fine Hollandaise can take a gal very far. And we know from her showing on Martha Stewart that she’s rather uncomfortable in the kitchen. Maybe we could get folks to come in and provide thumbnail sketches of policy analyses, if that, indeed, and not the ill-fitting suits, has been what’s been drawing the attention of our sweeties.

    But really, the field’s wide open.

  9. Let’s see, the only alum of note from my high school was Gary Kroeger – a comedian from the worst season (and there have been many) of Saturday Night Live. He stepped up in his career and became a gameshow host. Then, he put tail between and returned home.

    I haven’t had to return home and don’t even watch game shows, so I win!

    Your Rachel problem sounds quite serious. I’d go with the Hollandaise sauce competition because I, as a butchly thing, know this to be a skill that will take you far with your woman. Oh, and Maddow can’t cook.

  10. We only get bite-sized internet stream over here. I can only imagine the effect of nightly scheduling!
    Why not open the business with some ‘Rachel Maddow stole my wife swag’? or maybe even, given your points above, ‘I am Rachel Maddow’.

  11. as i said on twitter, sign me up. my love has actually told me that if dr. m. shows up on her motorcycle at our door, all bets are off. (and i’m on target to be a dr. m[accool] in my own right soon! and i’m left-handed! but alas not 5’11”. nor even 5’10”.)

    congrats on the lezzy award.

  12. Can my husband join?

    But, in my case, this is all entirely your fault. I had never saw her show, but after seeing your tweets, got curious, and found the video podcast. Am now head over heels after about three episodes.

  13. Marjorie, welcome! And youbetcha he can join. Ultimately I see your interest in Dr. M as a positive thing, since in the final equation, any swing voter swung this-a-way is a positive thing. Ever the recruiter, me.

    Reno, you flatter. However, you must remember, my feet are ten years older than hers, too.

    Leomaccool, we can all commiserate together. As a fresh Dr. M you can perhaps give some of the advanced seminars. On doctoring. What have you.

    Chumpy, you have lobbed us our first deathless logos. I have been wracking my brain all day trying to think of a good, simple, accompanying graphic for each of these. Will keep you updated. And will hope your household eschews high speed cable as long as possible.

    Hahn, you are a lucky woman. You have no idea the pressure I’m under. Also, I can’t help but read your “Maddow can’t cook” in the “[fill in the blank] can’t throw,” or “Batter can’t hit” kind of sandlot sing-song. Thinking you might have meant it this way, too.

    Looky,Daddy, ahem, thank you so much. Yer check will be in the mail soon.

  14. This post falls in the funny but true category. My beloved, beautiful butch that she is, can’t watch Dr Maddow. She is too busy watching me for signs for infatuation. If I turn to MSNBC, I get snarky comments about “my new girlfriend”. I have to laugh, but quietly. Plus, as I always remind T, Rachel Maddow is way too tall for me! I’m going to send her the link to this post ~ I’m sure she’ll be joining you.

  15. I know that my posting will leave a bit of a gap, but I couldn’t resist. Both my beloved girlie and I are associated in various ways with the university associated with Boulder, CO and the annual conference on world affairs is coming to town. She went last year and was all a-twitter about being in the same room with the good Dr., so when she got the reminder this year, she made such a joyous ruckus that I thought I was going to have to pull the car over to save lives. Unfortunately for my sweet girlfriend, there will be no Maddow sightings in Boulder this year; I have been trying to cheer her up for about a week now.

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