The Pencil Today:


“Obviously crime pays, or there’d be no crime.” — G. Gordon Liddy


Before I even begin this particular howl, I’ll remind readers that both the Republicans and Democrats have long, storied histories of stealing votes and even whole elections.

The Ballot Box That Put LBJ Over The Top

That caveat out of the way, I can barely control my indignation over the latest GOP dirty trick.

It’s getting personal now.

A little background: Saturday morning, the Boys of Soma were sitting around reminding each other through unverifiable anecdotes how clever, strong, and sexually potent we are. By and by, it sank in that if we continued to lie to each other loudly, some outside observers might begin to consider us liars. And that wouldn’t do.

So we settled into a brief quiet. And then Saunders piped up.

“I’m very disappointed in Nicole (not her real name),” he said, dolefully.

The rest of us glanced at each other. Nicole is an honorary Boy of Soma. Some consider her, in fact, the leader of the B of S because, well, she could probably kick the hell out of most of us. Okay, any of us.


Nicole is cherished for a variety of reasons. She’s smart, athletic, outspoken, direct, and one or two of the Boys has been known to become dreamy-eyed while watching her exit the coffeehouse. There is a general agreement within our ranks that her husband, Rod (again, not his real name) is a man to be envied.

No one has ever uttered a discouraging word about Nicole. That is, before Saunders piped up Saturday.

“What is it?” Tough Guy Mac demanded. “What’s the matter with Nicole?” I may be wrong but I think he may have balled his fists.

“Didja see who she’s going for in the election?” Saunders countered.

“No, who?” Mac and Irish Pat said as one.

Saunders dropped the bombshell. “Romney,” he said.

No, No, Say It Ain’t So!

We uttered a collective gasp. Even Barista Jericho’s iPod, heard over the room speakers at the time, stopped playing.

“Naw!” Tough Guy Mac said, waving Saunders off.

“Can’t be,” Irish Pat said.

“Whaddya talking about?” I said.

Saunders shrugged. “Look at her Facebook page,” he said.

So I pulled out the old machine and logged in. Sure enough, there it was, in a pretty display of electrons: “Nicole Magnuson Likes Mitt Romney.”

Can It Be?

Again, we fell silent. Gloom settled over our corner of the place.

“Well,” I said, “I’m gonna have to have some words with that young lady.”

“Somebody’s gonna have to,” Irish Pat said.

“I wish she was here right now so we could find out what the hell’s goin’ on,” Tough Guy Mac said.

“In fact, I’m gonna send her a message right now,” I said. Nicole at the time was out of town, in Cincinnati visiting her dear old mother. I clacked out a message telling her I was heartbroken that she’d disappointed us so.

Bang, a return message came back within seconds. “What? What’d I do?” she’d typed.

After a brief discussion during which the three of us at Soma marveled that even so backward a hamlet as Cincinnati now has the Internet, we agreed on the wording of our indictment.

Cincinnati Has Entered The 20th Century — Who Knew?

“We’re sitting here with our faces in our hands, weeping unashamedly,” I wrote. “None of us can believe it. You…, you…, you like Romney! There. I’ve said it!”

What followed was a long, outraged recount from Nicole of the dirty trick that’d been played on her. It seems someone’s busy these days hacking into people’s Facebook accounts and making them “Like” Mitt Romney.

Apparently, Mitt Romney is trying to get 8 million Likes. I suppose it’s some kind of weird political penis envy, considering that Barack Obama’s page has some 30 million Likes.

In any case, a dark, as yet unindicted soul within the Romney camp is behind this outrage.

Funny how one of Mitt’s talking points is that Barack Obama has been trying to turn people against each other. His own campaign almost came between Nicole and us.


When all was said and done, Nicole zinged me with this one: “I’m the one who should be disappointed with you. You should know me better than to think I’d go for Romney. I thought we were friends.”

The only events listings you need in Bloomington.

Wednesday, October 3rd, 2012

Brought to you by The Electron Pencil: Bloomington Arts, Culture, Politics, and Hot Air. Daily.

ART ◗ Ivy Tech Waldron Center, outside WFHB StudiosPublic participation in creating a ten-foot sculpture called “The Angel,” Rain or shine; 9am-5pm

SALE ◗ IU Morrison HallKinsey Institute Library Book Sale; 9am-5pm

STUDIO TOUR ◗ Brown County, various locationsThe Backroads of Brown County Studio Tour, free, self-guided tour of 16 local artists’ & craftspersons’ studios; 10am-5pm, through October

CLASS ◗ Monroe County Public LibraryDating Your Old Family Photos; 4pm

CLASS ◗ Purdue Extension, 3400 S. Walnut St.2012 Monroe County Citizens’ Academy, Learn how county government works; 6-9pm

CLASS ◗ Monroe County Public LibraryLights, Camera, Write: An Introduction to the Art of Screenwriting, 8-session course; 6:30-8:30pm, through November 28th (except November 21st)

MUSIC ◗ Muddy Boots Cafe, NashvilleLloyd Wood; 7-9pm

MUSIC ◗ Cafe DjangoTom Miller; 7pm

LECTURE ◗ Monroe County Public Library — “Money in the 2012 Elections,” presented by Marjorie Hershey of the IU Political Science Department; 7pm

VARIETY ◗ Buskirk Chumley TheaterIU’s Got Talent; 7pm

PERFORMANCE ◗ Unity of Bloomington ChurchAuditions and rehearsal, Bloomington Peace Choir; 7pm

MUSIC ◗ IU Ford-Crawford HallFaculty Recital: Carl Lenthe on trombone, Kimberly Carballo on piano; 7pm

CLASS ◗ IU Lilly LibraryLifelong Learning Series: We’re Off to See the Wizard, On the life and work of L. Frank Baum, 3 weekly sessions through October 17th; 7pm

FILM ◗ IU Cinema — “Gun Hill Road,” with personal appearance by actor Esai Morales; 7pm

FILM ◗ SoFA, Room 102 — “The Cove,” Part of the Animal Behavior Film Series; 7pm

FILM ◗ IU Memorial Union, Whittenberger AuditoriumUB Films: “Turn Me On, Dammit!“; 7:30pm

MUSIC ◗ Max’s PlaceOpen mic; 7:30pm

MUSIC ◗ The Player’s PubSarah’s Swing Set; 8pm

MUSIC ◗ IU Musical Arts CenterPhilharmonic Orchestra, David Efron, conductor, performs Mahler; 8pm

GAMES ◗ The Root Cellar at Farm BloomingtonTeam trivia, new night; 8pm

DANCING ◗ Harmony SchoolContra dancing; 8pm

MUSIC ◗ IU Ford-Crawford HallDoctoral Recital: Ilya Friedberg on piano; 8:30pm

ASTRONOMY ◗ IU Kirkwood ObservatoryOpen house, public viewing through the main telescope; 8:30pm

MUSIC ◗ The BluebirdThe Main Squeeze; 9pm

MUSIC ◗ The BishopWilder Maker, Hotfox, Bonesetters; 9:30pm


ART ◗ IU Art MuseumExhibits:

  • “New Acquisitions,” David Hockney; through October 21st
  • Paintings by Contemporary Native American Artists; through October 14th
  • “Paragons of Filial Piety,” by Utagawa Kuniyoshi; through December 31st
  • “Intimate Models: Photographs of Husbands, Wives, and Lovers,” by Julia Margaret, Cameron, Edward Weston, & Harry Callahan; through December 31st
  • French Printmaking in the Seventeenth Century;” through December 31st
  • Celebration of Cuban Art & Film: Pop-art by Joe Tilson; through December 31st
  • Workers of the World, Unite!” through December 31st

ART ◗ Ivy Tech Waldron CenterExhibits:

  • Ab-Fab — Extreme Quilting,” by Sandy Hill; October 5th through October 27th
  • Street View — Bloomington Scenes,” by Tom Rhea; October 5th through October 27th
  • From the Heartwoods,” by James Alexander Thom; October 5th through October 27th
  • The Spaces in Between,” by Ellen Starr Lyon; October 5th through October 27th

ART ◗ IU SoFA Grunwald GalleryExhibit:

  • “Samenwerken,” Interdisciplinary collaborative multi-media works; through October 11th

ART ◗ IU Kinsey Institute GalleryExhibits opening September 28th:

  • A Place Aside: Artists and Their Partners;” through December 20th
  • Gender Expressions;” through December 20th

PHOTOGRAPHY ◗ IU Mathers Museum of World CulturesExhibit:

  • “CUBAmistad” photos

ART ◗ IU Mathers Museum of World CulturesExhibits:

  • “¡Cuba Si! Posters from the Revolution: 1960s and 1970s”
  • “From the Big Bang to the World Wide Web: The Origins of Everything”
  • “Thoughts, Things, and Theories… What Is Culture?”
  • “Picturing Archaeology”
  • “Personal Accents: Accessories from Around the World”
  • “Blended Harmonies: Music and Religion in Nepal”
  • “The Day in Its Color: A Hoosier Photographer’s Journey through Mid-century America”
  • “TOYing with Ideas”
  • “Living Heritage: Performing Arts of Southeast Asia”
  • “On a Wing and a Prayer”

BOOKS ◗ IU Lilly LibraryExhibit:

  • Outsiders and Others:Arkham House, Weird Fiction, and the Legacy of HP Lovecraft;” through November 1st
  • A World of Puzzles,” selections form the Slocum Puzzle Collection

PHOTOGRAPHY ◗ Soup’s OnExhibit:

  • Celebration of Cuban Art & Culture: “CUBAmistad photos; through October

PHOTOGRAPHY ◗ Monroe County History CenterExhibit:

  • Bloomington: Then and Now,” presented by Bloomington Fading; through October 27th

ARTIFACTS ◗ Monroe County History CenterExhibit:

  • “Doctors and Dentists: A Look into the Monroe County Medical professions

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One thought on “The Pencil Today:

  1. david paglis - the lake county republican says:

    mike: i’m a little skeptical of your friends denial of liking mitt. what political advantage is gained from having facebook friends? i think maybe her birkenstocks were too tight or her foo-foo tea you liberals like fermented a little and that explains her descent into madness.

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