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Sunday, August 01, 2004

"W would make a fine garden gnome"

Thus the headline on my letter to the BI Review and published by the sainted editor, Doug Crist, on July 10.

So many folks seem to remember it and wave cheerily over the Safeway cheese counter that I thought I'd let everyone know how Doug handled the titling, and run the bally thing again.
"Bravo that splendid double broadside from Jimmy Shenfield, and what perfect timing for your patriotic hol.

JS's outburst gave "Fahrenheit 9/11" the feel of must-see movie of the season; I lost no time making a beeline for our belovèd Lynwood. Even the queuing had a feel-good nobility about it.

As for the film itself - not a bad little cinematic romp. Truth to tell, I'm not all that up on whatever Bush is meant to have done to merit this documentary - a mite busy blushing for our equally bogus Blair across the water in Westminster - but I do take issue with one of Shenfield's observations.

Far from de -humanizing GWB by bringing out his cartoonish qualities, I found the film actually added a bit of character to the presidential blandness. Also, I hadn’t until now noticed Bush’s distinct resemblance to one of those garden gnomes so favoured by lawn owners of good taste.

I thought Moore did an ace job letting that aspect speak for itself: beaky little nose, those shifty eyes. All that was lacking was pointy cap and fishing rod.

I wonder what the design mould copyright situation would be there ....

Where I do sympathize with Shenfield is over Moore's mischievous technique of just letting the camera linger on the man: this is not someone favored by lens or alphabet and the dignity of the office should be protected by only the most careful examples of the editor's art.

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