Honest Abe

lincoln-bdayBefore “Presidents’ Day” was concocted, the February birthdays of Abraham Lincoln and George Washington (12th  and 22nd  respectively) were celebrated separately. That meant TWO days off from school, which in the dead of winter was a most welcome hiatus.

The big joke back then was, “Did you know Abe Lincoln was Jewish? Yeah – he was shot in the temple!” Just as funny today, innit.

Arguably, Lincoln was America’s greatest president, but he was no saint. Saints don’t get to be president. But like many saints, he was a tragic figure who endured crueltyand suffering tossed his way by forces beyond his control, many of them human (technical term: “assholes”).

When I think of Lincoln, for some reason I flash back to this corny 60-second spot for CLEP (College Level Examination Program), where his character’s basic decency and intelligence is simultaneously acknowledged and disparaged as inadequate (I know you’re a smart guy. You know you’re a smart guy. But without the sheepskin, you ain’t goin’ anywhere….”). Defeated, downcast, dismissed, he departs, despondent.

Too bad there wasn’t Trump University back then.

Happy Birthday, Mister President!


This entry was posted in People Who Died, Died. Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to Honest Abe

  1. Miami Harold says:

    “Defeated, downcast, dismissed, he departs, despondent.”
    Good. Close. Better:
    Despondent, dismissed, downcast, and defeated, he departs. Or:
    He departs, despondent, dismissed, downcast, and defeated.
    Bewitched, bothered, and bewildered.
    Abe Lincoln, lovable loser.
    No other president warrants poetry.
    Sad for them (and us), but
    A tip of the stove-pipe to him.

    • Squathole says:

      Wow, Miami Harold, back from the days before the day. An early inspiration, and still at it! Great to hear from you again.

  2. Lois Terms says:

    Whatever happened to Missing Lincoln?

  3. Beardsley says:

    I agree that President Lincoln was a tragic figure. He was reviled by both sides in the Civil War even as his personal life was fraying from within. And yet he prevailed, emerging from chaos with the fervent hope of universal reconciliation. His reward: assassination.

    Can you imagine him in today’s Republican party? I can’t.

  4. Dawgbowl says:

    “CLEP?” Really? Which executive material genius came up with THAT moniker?

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