Sunday, December 14, 2008

Missing Maureen

Name: Maureen Dowd
Age: A well-preserved 56
Hometown: Washington, DC, but frequently seen lurking in the Halls of Power.
Last Seen: November 30, 2008
Recent Whereabouts: Drinking vodka martinis with Tina Fey

We here at Dowd Central are shaking with panic because for the fourth time in two weeks we have searched the New York Times Opinion page for our beloved Maureen only to find this frustratingly unenlightening notice:

Maureen Dowd is off today.
And while Tim Egan is doing a yeoman's job of filling the breach, despite some Kristol-like problems with getting quotes right, he is no MoDo.

If you have any first-hand knowledge of her current situation, or even some third-hand hearsay or innuendo, please let us know. Until then we will just have to light a vigil candle and pray that wherever she is, she is safe and warm and healthy.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Necessary Reading

With Maureen Dowd's long sabbatical well into it's second week, we here at Dowd Central have had to cast our nets a little wider to get the insightful yet still bitterly funny political insight that we are so addicted to. One mandatory feature of a blog that we have been remiss in deploying is the blogroll, that sidebar feature that directs traffic to other blogs far wittier and relevant that the one you are reading at the time. To rectify that situation, we have instituted one of our own featuring our favorite bloggers, bloggers that seem to have a Maureen Dowd obsession nearly as great as ours, and a few that are trainwrecks we just can't stop glancing at. You make the call about which are which. With no further ado, here we go.

Scriptoids. Grace Nearing (which is about the most sublime online moniker I have ever chanced across) always has a witty and pithy take on something or another. Never dull, frequently funny, and always thought provoking. That she is the most loyal commenter here has no bearing on her blog being placed on top of this list.

Jon Swift. While very low in Dowd-related content, Jon Swift is the preeminent conservative pundit on the web and the only one willing to make the bold pronouncements nobody else is making. He is also a leading advocate for the rights of Pseudonym-Americans. Despite the name, the blog is woefully short on recipes for Irish babies.

Bats Left/Throws Right. Doghouse Riley is one of more amusing curmudgeons on the web who is never short of an opinion about national or local politics.

Whiskey Fire. While blogmeister Thers is the ringleader, it is the Molly Ivors rants that really turn our crank. Invariably critical of the Dowdster, the label of invective Ivors muster makes one worry for her hypertension risk.

The Daily Howler. While a little long-winded, there is no greater DowdHater in the blogosphere than Bob Somerby. The depth and breadth of his decades long evisceration of Maureen is impressive in its obsession.

Shakesville. There is no more vociferous despiser of Dowd than Melissa McEwen and her viciously creative nicknames. And she has a lot to say about other topics as well.

Maureen Dowd Is Worthless. We here at Dowd Central pride ourselves on being the best blog devoted exlusively to Maureen Dowd, relying largely on our uniquity to justify the claim. Fortunately for us, newcomer MDIW is far more wide-ranging in topics than the title would imply.

As always, we are open to suggestions and commentary. Please let us know what else we should be paying attention to.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Actually, Most Days

Just how intentional was the irony in the last two paragraphs of Tim Egan's lament about Joe the Plumber getting a book deal?

There was a time when I wanted to be like Sting, the singer, belting out, “Roxanne ...” I guess that’s why we have karaoke, for fantasy night. If only there was such a thing for failed plumbers, politicians or celebrities who think they can write.

Maureen Dowd is off today.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Dowd Profiles Fey

Maureen Dowd is moonlighting as a celebrity journalist and has a profile of Tina Fey in this month’s Vanity Fair. Most of it chronicles the ugly duckling/rags-to-comedy-gold/My Fair Lady rise from chubby staff writer to pin-up girl for the Mensa set. Or as Maureen quotes another wag:

...the New Yorker staff writer Michael Specter calls “the sex symbol for every man who reads without moving his lips.”
As part of her research, she gets to hang out on the Upper West Side drinking vodka martinis, not exactly heavy lifting. She paints Tina as a ball-buster with a soft side. Tina’s husband is kept on a short leash.
Richmond wades in. “When we were first dating,” he says, harking back to Chicago in 1994, “some of the guys at Second City said, ‘Hey, wouldn’t it be a hoot if we go over—”’
”’—over to the Doll House,”’ Fey finishes. “ ‘We’ll go to this strip club ironically.’ I was like, ‘The fuck you will.”’
And Fey still recoils. “It didn’t go great when you came back, did it? I was very angry. It was disrespectful.”
Maureen even slips in a second-hand Rude Name®:
There’s a reason her former S.N.L. pal Colin Quinn dubbed Tina Fey “Herman the German.” She’s a sprite with a Rommel battle plan.
Other literary and pop cultural allusions thrown out include:
  • Leni Riefenstahl the Nazi filmographer
  • Elly May Clampett of The Beverly Hillbillies
  • Sally Bowles from Cabaret
  • Daisy Buchanan from The Great Gatsby
  • Elaine from Seinfeld
  • Mary Richards in The Mary Tyler Moore Show
And of course there are the Sarah Palin references as well as plenty of compare/contrast bits (mostly compare) between Tina and Liz Lemon, her 30 Rock alter ego.

Maureen seems to be carving out a niche as a interviewer of smart and funny celebs. It takes one snarky semi-bitter babe to know one.