Folks, we’ve arrived at that most sacred of days for Americans: State of the Union Day. During the Bush administration’s tenure, it was decreed by common law that all citizens had to drink their way through George W’s annual one-man show “My Presidential Play,” alternating between yelling obscenities at The Television and playing Foosball in the other room like patriots.
During the Bush-administration years, we drank because we thought Things Couldn’t Get Any Worse. But in the post-Hope era, we drink because This Is As Good As It’s Likely To Get, And It’s Still Really Quite Awful. Here, nerds, are the rules for this year’s SOTU DRINKING GAME!
To begin, you’ll want a few cans of cheap beer handy. The cheaper the better. You know, the economy and all. If anybody reading this post lives in St. Paul, Minnesota, I think you can still get a 30-rack of Milwaukee Special Reserve for like 6 bucks and change — be warned, it tastes like used bathwater — so go pick up a few of those and invite some friends over. And get a bottle of Turkey or Beam or something, because these speeches always last longer than you expect. Or get some Canadian corn whiskey, again, because of the joblessness of America.
Oh, before I forget. If any of your friends say things like, “You know, I think Matt Taibbi was too hard on David Brooks,” give them actual used bathwater to drink but tell them it’s dark rum. They will believe you, because this friend of yours is not very perceptive.
SO. Take a drink if:
— Obama says, “hope,” “change,” or “yes we can,” and it feels really awkward, like an ex saying, “I still love you”
— Obama says, “let me be clear”
— Obama says, “we need to set aside our differences,” or “reach across the aisle”
— Joe Biden stays standing for too long after an applause line. Take an extra sip if he makes a “my bad!” face
— Obama says the words, “economy,” “jobs,” and “recovery.” They are his “9/11,” “terrorism,” and, “resolve,” respectively.
— Obama says, “terrorist,” “terrorism,” or “al Queda.” He has to say these words as mandated by the Constitution, so get ready for drinks
— Republicans stay sitting when Democrats stand
— They show Evan Bayh and you want to punch him right in his stupid face
— Same, but replace Bayh with Max Baucus, Mary Landrieu, or Kent Conrad
Finish your drink if:
— Republicans hold up childish children’s signs and look like they might have wet themselves
— Obama says he’s fighting the Special Interests, especially concerning Health Care, Financial regulation, etc. We’ll hear a lot of this, most of which won’t be true. Load an extra beer in the chamber
— The camera shows Michelle Obama sitting with Real Americans, to prove Obama understands What’s Important
— Nancy Pelosi visibly nods off
— Biden yells, “I’m gonna say it. Massachusetts ain’t shit!”
— Biden, in response to Obama addressing the spending freeze, whispers, “I’m cool as ice.”
— Screamin’ Joe Wilson just pulls a straight up Michael Richards
— Obama mentions a major progressive legislative victory (don’t hold your breath!)
Take a shot if:
— Obama uses the phrase, “fat cats”
— Biden gives the wink and the gun to someone in the front few rows
— Obama mentions Guantanamo Bay
— Obama goes 5 minutes without invoking something like “God is on our side.” This omission alone (fingers crossed) will make his presidency a success
— Obama says “Our forces in Yemen,” or “Our forces in Pakistan”
— Gov. Bob McDonnell, while giving the GOP response, uses any of the following phrases: “same old partisan politics,” “America wants Washington to get things done,” “we need to make Washington work,” or “terrorists be crazy”
Take 2 shots if:
— Obama says the word, “Depression”
That’s it for now. If you want to add any rules, email me at the address in the column on the right. I’ll be updating this list throughout the day if I get suggestions.
I’ll be liveblogging the speech here tonight, so come back and let’s have fun with politics, which are horrible.