Ask Matt Labash

Ask Matt Labash: A marriage proposal, Euro-screwed, and interrupting Barack O’bama

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Matt Labash
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      Matt Labash

      Hi, welcome to “Ask Matt Labash.” I’ll be your host, Matt Labash. The idea for this column – if idea isn’t too strong a word – is that it is not a column at all. Rather, it’s a conversation. One in which I do ninety-five percent of the talking. If you did most of the talking, you’d have to watch my eyes go dead and my attention wander until it was my turn to talk again. So trust me, it’s better this way.

      For those unfamiliar with me from my day job at The Weekly Standard, I’ll give you a capsule bio by way of introduction: I have the gift of wisdom. Does that sound arrogant? I’m sorry, that wasn’t my intention. I didn’t choose wisdom. It chose me. If I had my druthers, I’d have chosen another gift, perhaps the untold riches of Lil’ Wayne, whose teeth are made of actual diamonds, or to be the sexiest man alive, like Rachel Maddow. But wisdom is what they gave me, so wisdom is all I have to give back to you.

      This is not, you should know, a mere advice column. If you need advice, I’ll give it. But the only rule here is that there are no rules. You can ask me a question about anything that’s on your mind: current events, pop culture, media, theology, string theory, fishing tips, wicker repair. The only limits we have are those of your imagination. And those of my knowledge base. Which is considerably limited, truth be told. So try not to ask me anything that requires research. Though they tell me I have access to Google on this computer if we need it.

      If all goes according to plan, ours will not be a traditional writer/reader relationship. It’s more complex than that. I might empathize or cajole. I might educate, instruct, or inspire. I might pretend to answer your question while actually reporting you to Social Services, since you’re a dangerous person who should not have contact with children. I might tell you to climb up on my shoulders, that you’re not heavy, you’re my brother. Or I might tell you that you are heavy, and that you should hop down until you lose a few pounds. I might just sidle up behind you, put my big strong man hands on the small of your back, and whisper in your ear the words of the poet, Kenny Rogers: “We’ve got tonight, who needs tomorrow?”

      To which you’ll say something like, “I can’t, I’ve got to go home and wash my hair.”
      To which I’ll say something like, “Shhh. We’ve got tonight babe, why don’t you stay?”
      Wherever this takes us, our journey begins now:

      <i>Matt Labash is a senior writer with The Weekly Standard. His first book, <a href="http://www.amazon.com/Fly-Fishing-Darth-Vader-Evangelical/dp/1439159971">Fly Fishing with Darth Vader: And Other Adventures with Evangelical Wrestlers, Political Hitmen, and Jewish Cowboys</a> will be published next month by Simon & Schuster.</i>

Editor’s Note: Have a question for Matt Labash? Submit it here.

Dear Matt Labash, After reading your latest, it has come to my attention that you might  be useful around the house and that if you are not gay,  I would like to marry you.  So… 1. Are you gay? And, if not, then  2. Will you marry me? Yours in sincerity (define “sincerity” though) – Mariana Nolan

I will take your questions in chronological order:

1. I am not gay, though I am an unqualified supporter of lesbianism, especially when they let me watch. When I do have sex — which I try not to do too often, in the interest of saving my strength for my parkour team, and because I like to leave the ladies wanting more — I only desire women.  Their soft caress. Their swan-like grace.  Their sweet whispers. Which, when you break my desire down into its component parts, actually sounds pretty gay.  Maybe I should butch it up a little.  Does anyone have Hilary Swank’s number?

2. I would happily marry you, especially if you’re hot and rich (What’s on the inside isn’t so important. Everybody has insides. But not everybody is hot and rich.) I am, however, indeed already married to a lovely lass. I would post photos of her, but don’t want my creepy readers asking me to send them pictures of her feet.  Not that I’m above posting those in the interest of traffic generation. Okay, here they are:

Sorry gents, she’s all mine.

Puh-lease can you explain the Euro debt crisis? What the hell’s the matter with them?!?” – A.C.

You mean besides them being European? As if that’s not problem enough? The place where their banana hammocks are too short, and their armpit hair, too long?  The place where they think soccer is a sport that warrants watching, instead of somewhere you take your kid on Saturday mornings because they’re too young to play tackle football? The place that birthed Roxette, Milli Vanilli, and Il Divo? The place where they think they’re entitled to statutory eight-week paid vacations and retiring in their mid 50s, which they compensate for by also demanding outrageous pension benefits, cradle-to-grave social services and midday naps? Who do they think they are? Journalists, or something?

Don’t get me wrong, I lived in Europe for three years, and it is one of my favorite ecumenical continents – a place where you are free to choose between atheism and Islam.   Also, they have lots of pretty museums, architecture and cathedrals, to remind themselves what they used to be before becoming hollowed-out husks of their former selves. Though they’re not too hollowed out, apparently. Now comes word that Europeans are even catching up to us in obesity rates. It seems that complaining incessantly about America does not count as cardio.

And now their best hope – their only hope, really – is for Germany, the country that nearly derailed the entire 20th century and the course of civilization, not to mention the Jews, to restore order. That’s encouraging.

Whatever the various micro-causes of the European debt crisis – real estate bubbles bursting, the unsustainability of members of the Eurozone playing by different rules, obscenely expensive public sector commitments, banking bailouts, general profligacy – the horror is amplified due to one incontrovertible fact: this is the first major crisis since World War II that Europe has been forced to face with the sobering knowledge that the U.S. can’t do anything to save it. At this point, we’re lucky if we can save ourselves. There’s a moral here somewhere, besides, “we’re all screwed.” But damned if I know what it is.