CAUTION: The following contains brief, comical thoughts relating to politics. It is not meant to endorse OR affront any particular political leaning. This is basically an idea I had on the morning commute that amused me, and I hope it does the same for you.
"What do you think's going to happen in next year's election?" Husband asked me this morning, while we were driving to work.
(We were on the subject of John McCain because Husband had had an action-movie-style dream about him last night (this is normal for us).)
I shrugged. "It's not going to be pretty," I answered. Elections generally aren't. Seriously. I once witnessed an election where the losing presidential candidate briefly threatened suicide.
Granted, that was a high school drama club election - true story! - but elections are not known for their warm fuzziness.
"Who do you think will be the Republican nominee?" Husband asked.
I shrugged again. In my caffeine-withdrawn brain (for I was once again rationing my coffee until I got to work), a muddly idea spun slowly and took shape. "The candidates... are like -- cheeses," I said.
"What?" Husband looked at me like he does sometimes, mildly concerned that this is it, and I've finally gone mad.
"The Republican candidates are like cheeses," I repeated. It made more sense when I said it the second time, and I started talking faster.
"Because, I mean, think about it! Whenever a new potential candidate appears on the horizon, he's lauded as a 'rising star' of the party. He's fresh, flavorful, distinctive... but then everybody -- Fox News, CNN, MSNBC -- has to have a taste, so he never gets covered up or preserved at all. The overexposure leads to some kind of funky mold that he can't scrape off (googling Santorum, anyone?), and then nobody wants him anymore."
"So who wins the nomination, then? Who lasts?" Husband challenged.
I thought to myself, and then I grinned. "The American cheese!" I declared. "The one that's processed and produced for mass consumption. Nobody's crazy about it, but everybody will eat it if they have to."
Well, Husband and I had a good laugh about it, and then I decided to write it all down for you, net-friends.
I even made you a reference list of 2012 primary candidates!
(Again, please note that this list doesn't bear on my political leanings per se -- I'd have a list for Democrats if they were in a primary race this election cycle. And it would have "limburger" on it. John Edwards, I'm looking at you.)
In alphabetical order:
Michele Bachmann: Emmentaler. It's pretty firm, piquant (which can mean hot or pungent, depending on your personal opinion of her), and produces random holes. BONUS for this analogy? The holes are also known as "eyes!" That perfectly fits Newsweek's pathetically-bad-judgment nickname for Ms. "Crazy-Eyes" Bachmann.
Herman Cain: Mozzarella. Could I really go with anything else for the former Godfather's Pizza CEO? Not to mention that Cain, like Mozzarella, is currently the most popular of these candidates across the country.
Newt Gingrich: Pecorino Romano. Good in small doses. It's a grating cheese (PUN!), very firm, and aged for months or years (or, in Gingrich's case, decades).
Sarah Palin: Pepper Jack. It's tart, spicy, and fiercely American. It has kind of a niche market, though -- quesadillas and burgers -- and it doesn't mix well with those "elite" cheeses.
(I know she recently announced that she's not planning on seeking the Republican nomination... but Palin's nothing if not unconventional, and SarahPAC is still out there gathering funds. I'm just saying.)
Ron Paul: Blue/Bleu. The very fact that this pungent cheese can be spelled two ways is controversial! But when you consider the "Blue Republican" movement that Paul has inspired, it also fits on its own. Not to mention that people generally love or hate blue cheese, and Ron Paul is nothing if not polarizing.
Tim Pawlenty: Gouda. Generally inoffensive, not particularly memorable.
Rick Perry: Roquefort. It has a protected designation of origin (PDO), much like the Texas governor's ideal America, and it's white and tangy! Wikipedia also tells me that roquefort's taste "fades to a salty finish," which is what I think most people are expecting from Perry at this point.
Mitt Romney: Velveeta!!! Romney's versatile, slickly produced, and reasonably "pasteurized" by his previous campaign. He's also got a longevity that none of the other candidates have been able to match. Is he genuine cheese? Well... not really. But he's marketing himself for the masses, and that's why, as the American cheese, he's the expected front-runner.
Do you have any cheeses/candidates to add? What about Democrats/Independents/President Obama? What kind of cheese is our Commander-in-Chief?
Also, have a great weekend!