Ah, yellow ribbon… so we meet again. I remember first learning to hate you back in the era of Bush I / Iraq I as you became the de facto anti- anti- war emblem. Those were heady times. I was a young idealist, you were a star in one the greatest shell-game boondoggles ever perpetrated on American political debate: Support The Troops! mania. Even through my pinko-tinted vision, I grimly admired your Machiavellian mindfuckery as you manipulated public opinion on the war right back up its own ass. The infuriating black-hole logic of your halcyon days was brilliantly captured in this Mr. Show sketch.
Over time though, you’ve really taken a dive. As land lines moved to cell phones and VHS gave way to DVD, you went from graceful ribbon to prosaic car magnet, banished forever to truck stops and convenience stores. Anyone care for a watered-down political (or, I dunno… apolitical) statement with their People magazine and pack of Big Red?
Once your war was won/lost you drifted from pillar to post like a forgotten child star, a statement without a cause. Desperate for attention, acceptance and love, you’d eagerly apply your toothless $2 fellatio to any cause that trawled down your alley: arthritis awareness, breast cancer, testicular cancer, hell — all-inclusive cancer awareness. You went so far as to sell out to the other side with the Support Our Troops/Bring Them Home! thing, even took up with the shadowy POW-MIA movement (and yeeesh, those are some greasy bastards).
But as the great sage Tracy Jordan said on “30 Rock” the other night, you can’t change, you’re like a chameleon: always a lizard. And what do you mean now? A morbidly obese woman in phone sales wants to share her love for the ornamental lifeform she owns. Really? Why am I forced to know this? Finally, the last drop of significance has been wrung, and there you stand stick, a lifeless husk. It’s kinda embarrassing to see, even for an old adversary. Still, it won’t keep me from chronicling your demise. Call me a terrible person, but if you look to the left of the picture above you can see a distorted reflection of a figure who’s jumped out of their car at a stoplight to take a picture with their phone.
That’s me, gloating.