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Zaleski: Dancin' in the moonlight? Don't do it

There was a full moon last week. I've not bought into the myth that a full moon makes people goofy. However, some of the phone calls that drifted out of the ether in the past few days came close to making me a believer in the lunar-inspired defin...

There was a full moon last week. I've not bought into the myth that a full moon makes people goofy. However, some of the phone calls that drifted out of the ether in the past few days came close to making me a believer in the lunar-inspired definition of lunatic.

A few examples:

Commenting on the slaying of a Fargo dentist, a caller made this bizarre connection. "If Obama wasn't president, this would not have happened!"

Wait a minute, I said. The president is to blame for a murder-for-hire in Fargo?

"Damn right!" he screamed. "He's corrupt - all that Chicago crowd - so murderers think they can get away with ..."

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Hold on, I interrupted. Let me understand. A family tragedy stretching from Oklahoma to North Dakota is the president's fault?

"You just don't get it, do you?" he said. "You're part of the problem, you media people. You should investigate this thing. Obama's behind it. ... He is!"

I could not suppress a laugh. The caller apparently was offended. Mercifully, he hung up.

A caller identifying herself as "a real American" said "all those liberals you guys in the media love" should be rounded up and shipped off to New York City, "or one of those other un-American places in this great country ..."

The Yankees had won the World Series the night before so I asked: You mean New York, where the Yankees play baseball, is un-American?

"Ha!" she said triumphantly. "You bet it's un-American. The Yankees, too. You see any real American names on that team. I sure don't. They got Japanese, Mexicans and who knows what else. No real Americans ..."

Real Americans? I asked.

"You know what I mean," she said. "You know ..."

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No, I don't, I said.

"Well, with your name - Pollack, I'm guessin'? - I suppose you wouldn't get it," she sneered.

I hung up.

A soft-spoken women who identified herself as Jane said: "This flu thing? It's a plot by our government so people won't pay attention to this health care reform thing."

I was confused. You mean, I said, that the government is using a flu scare to get people to stop thinking about health care? How does that work? The whole flu shot stuff is about health care, isn't it?

"No, no," she said with menacing calm, "if we're sick with the flu or whatever, we won't have the energy to fight them."

Fight whom?

"The government! The government, you ninny!" she said. "The flu is a hoax - to scare us. No one needs flu shots. It's all a big scare ..."

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But, I said, doesn't that mean we won't get sick and we will have the energy you said we won't have?

Long pause. "Now you're trying to confuse me," she said, her voice rising. "You must be part of the conspiracy ..."

Gosh, I said, first I've heard of it.

Click, she was gone.

There's a great song from 1973, "Dancin' in the Moonlight" by King Harvest, apparently a one-hit wonder. Part of the lyrics go like this:

"We get it on most every night

"When that old moon gets so big and bright

"It's a supernatural delight

"Everybody was dancin' in the moonlight."

A little advice for folks a tad out of plumb: Don't dance in the moonlight.

Readers can reach Forum Editorial Page Editor Jack Zaleski at (701) 241-5521.

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