The Tank is the converted theater where the un-credentialed left-wing bloggers are setting up shop during convention week. It’s on the far west end on 42nd Street, between 9th and 10th, and getting there requires dodging the hawkers in front of the Lion King as well as those guys who importune passersby with “a business opportunity” while handing out slips of paper that say to meet later at some hotel in New Jersey.
Last night, the Tank was the site of a party called Sleeping With The Enemy: A Bi-Partisan Affair. The idea was to get young liberals and young republicans together, get them drunk, and let the carnal magic unfold a velvet path across the aisle. Party identification at the bar determined who got a red cup or a blue cup. It was perhaps a testament to size and gender makeup of the co-sponsoring New York Young Republican Club that there seemed to be far fewer red cups than blue ones, and I saw only one girl holding red, which I think might have been an accident. Not that the color coding was needed, since other than the aforementioned instance, all the red ups were all in the hands of dudes whose button-downs and pleated chinos gave their affiliation away from fifty yards.
It was a nice time, a welcome improvement over the media party, despite that it looked like there was little bi-partisan love brewing in the Tank’s courtyard.
“I haven’t seen much yet,” said David Alpert, one of the organizers. “We though that the couches might get used. But no luck so far.”
I was disappointed by the lack of ladies with red cups, because I’ve been secretly hoping to see some Republican romance — either a) intra-Republican mating, for anthropological purposes, or b) inter-faith “dialogue” between Republicans and Democrats, or c) a special sub-variety thereof involving one young Republican lass and me.
The only way to understand them, I’ve decided, is to love them. So for the sake of coming to terms with this convention and what it means for humankind, I think I have to go on a Republican date. But I haven’t really seen any opportunities. The Republicans for Choice are not in my age bracket. The Log Cabin Republicans don’t do it for me. And then it was slim pickings from the red cups at the Sleeping With the Enemy party.
Still, I’m convinced I must press forward. Mostly because of this weird dream I had the other night where I seduced this earnest young southern belle-type Republican delegate who was being harassed by nasty protesters. They were hosing her down, not in the she’s-my-cherry-pie-by-Warrant way but more in the eyes-on-the-prize-Bull-Connor-way, and in the morphean morality my mind generated, this was an acceptable punishment at first for being a Republican delegate, but at a certain point she became a victim. I intervened. She looked up at me in gratitude. The strangest part was how my voice fell to sotto voce and I drew her near while also saying "you know that the President has the worst job approval ratings in history — you know that don't you? Don’t you?" She began to accept this, to believe me as she came closer, to part her lips as she changed her mind about Bush, and that's the last thing I remember before the phone rang.