A man who is reputed to be the governor of one of the U.S.'s more regressive states, South Carolina to be exact, found -- as has been the case with many another political figure not only lately but throughout history -- that he could no longer resist his extramarital urges, and he took time out from his busy schedule of misapprehensions -- five days it was said -- to catch a plane to a city in the next continent to the south, and in fact way down near South America's southern tip -- Buenos Aires, to be accurate -- and there, as he confessed later, he satisfied his bodily desires with a lady of that country, Argentina.
He said that this was the third time he had done that, but meanwhile, unknown to him while he was deep in tango country expressing his love for the said lady -- an activity that, all other considerations aside, any red-blooded male would envy -- this time things were happening back up north at home that were different.
Somebody must have put a little birdie in someone else's ear,because this time, after he was gone for about two days, all of a sudden the media and its listeners and readers all over the country had become entranced by cries and even howls of, "Where has the governor of South Carolina disappeared to?"
Ordinarily the whereabouts of this man should be a matter of towering unimportance. He is, after all, only the governor of South Carolina, and a Republican at that. But the question was asked with such frequency and urgency that it became easy to suspect all sorts of things,up to and including foul play. Oddly, however, I don't remember it including anything romantic. Maybe there was no perception of him being capable of anything that vital and interesting.
As this kind of hanky-panky performed by one after another American political figure has become so routine, the most interesting aspect of this particular case is trying to imagine how the governor must have felt when, way down in tangy Buenos Aires, after he had cleaned up and zipped up and had bade the toothsome lady goodbye for another two or three months or whenever, and had stepped down into the hotel lobby or wherever, he thought he'd peruse a paper to see what had been happening in the world during those deliciously prolonged moments when he had been absolutely lost in his supreme satisfactions and ecstasies, and bang! There it was.
Where are you, sucker!
I can think of no better expression that must've come to his mind than one that is often heard in one of the cultures that I came from. It is uttered at moments when the worst sort of thing has happened, after a person has been feeling that he was definitely getting away with something. It is best done with the eyes clamped tight shut for a moment, the head bobbing, and one hand clenched in a fist that the person can barely resist using to punch a large hole in his own forehead. And the words that come out, strung out for long seconds by the anticipation of the terrible consequences that will follow without any question, "Ohhh Sh-t!" And then repeated with despair and so much resigned recognition of his terrible fate that he leaves out the exclamation mark and uses caps instead,"Awww SH-T."
It is chagrin with a capital "C." And in this man's case that desperate feeling must've been magnified many times over because he was so well-known throughout the country, and his party was looking at him as a good possibility to run in the national electoral race of four years from now.
That must've been a VERY long flight from Buenos Aires home to SC, because I can't believe the Fates would have been so unkind to have the news popped to him after he stepped off the plane in the Palmetto State.
Now in things you read about this, people are having a good time speculating on what this means for the future -- his and his party's. Can he get over this. And the old piece of advice is dragged out once again, as if the writers feel that they are the first ever to have formulated it, namely that maintaining a coverup is worse than committing the misdeed. Little to nothing is said, though, about the virtues of not going astray in the first place. Maybe that is assumed, though I think that's giving people too much credit.
But where is the coverup here? The only covers I can see are the ones that the governor and his lover threw aside before cleaving to each other.
Oh, I guess they mean the stories that his underlings gave to account for his absence, the aides who professed to know anything at all, of which the main line seems to have been that he donned a backpack and was hiking the Appalachian Trail.
But the good governor didn't say that that was what he was doing, and he had no idea that a coverup might be needed till (speculatively on my part like most else that he did on that junket) he opened that English language paper down in distant Argentina, and he knew that the jig -- all of it -- was up,and we know what he said then.
I merely want to add that the lady and the Argentines are not entirely free of blame in this matter, and that should be duly noted. I don't know what the proportion is to the rest of the population, but according to two movies I have seen, Argentina produces some truly devastating female humans. If you don't believe this, see the ones that populate a genuine masterpiece called "Tango," and another film, "Tango Assassin," a Robert Duvall effort in which a hitman job is lamely depicted merely to keep company with observations about tango, as performed by two sisters who had no physical resemblance to each other whatsoever, but were both in and of themselves spectacular in appearance almost beyond belief. Or maybe it's just what their national dance does for the women down there.