Friday, July 12, 2024

Rudy and Mr. Cicada

I was enjoying a quiet afternoon here at Stately Phalon Manor when the doorbell rang. I looked at my doorbell camera and saw it was Mr. Cicada! But kind of early. I opened the door.

“Mr. Cicada! Good to see you again but aren’t you a little early? You were just here in 2021,” I said.

“Oh, that was my cousin from Brood 10,” he said. “I’m from Brood 13. We’ve been hibernating since 2007.”

“OK, I understand,” I said.

“Apparently my trashy relatives from Brood 19 are going to be here this year, too,” Mr. C. lamented. “But let’s catch up. Who became president after Rudy Giuliani?”

“Rudy Giuliani? President? Where have you been since 2007, under a rock?”

“Uh, yeah,” responded Mr. Cicada.

“Oh, yes. Of course. My bad.”

“Last I heard, George W. Bush’s second term was coming to an end with a great economy, record stock market and the strongest banking system in the world,” Mr. C. said. “The Republicans were cruising to a win in 2008, and Rudy was leading in the polls for the GOP nomination. Rudy the shoo-in.”

“We need to talk,” I said.

“What’s there to talk about? Giuliani is ‘America’s Mayor,’ with all sorts of successful business ventures happening. He’s worth north of $100 million, last I checked. How could he not become president? It was all set to be a Rudy-Hillary race.”

“Well, he kinda fizzled right out of the box in 2008,” I said. “Hillary was a big dud, too. Then the economy crashed followed by the Great Recession.”

“So, who got elected?”

“Barack Hussein Obama.”

“Yeah, right,” said my little friend. “Next thing you’re gonna tell me is that Donald Trump got elected next.”

I explained the next four presidential elections to him and told him how Rudy got a little wackier recently, even more than he usually is.

“Well, he got totally plastered on election night and told President Trump he should go out and claim he won, despite all the evidence to the contrary,” I said. “Then things got weird. He had an unhinged press conference to claim Trump won. You know the Four Seasons in Philadelphia?”

“Oh, yeah, luxury hotel. I buzzed by there one night about 17 years ago. Nice place,” Mr. Cicada said.

“No, Four Seasons Landscaping, next to the funeral home and across the street from the adult bookstore. They got their venues a little mixed up.”

I told Mr. C. how Rudy kind of went crazy with wacky theories on how the election was stolen from Donald Trump.

“Rudy said, ‘We have lots of theories. Now we just need some evidence.’ He actually said that with a straight face.”

Next, I told him how America’s Mayor falsely accused two election workers of trying to steal the election in Georgia. They sued him and now he owes them $148 million. And he’s been indicted in Georgia for trying to steal the election. And Arizona, too. And, also, that he declared bankruptcy.

“Didn’t you used know Rudy?” Mr. C. asked.

“Yes, a little, when he was U.S. attorney for Manhattan before he was mayor, when I was a journalist covering New York City courts and legal issues.”

“What was he like then?”

“He was a little crazy then, too,” I answered. “People forget that on September 10, 2001, he was about to be ridden out of New York on a rail. He second wife was about to clean him out, and he was literally sleeping on a friend’s couch in those final days of his term.”

“Wow, that’s sad,” said Mr. Cicada. “I missed that part. I must have been under a rock.”

“Yeah, it is sad,” I said. “He didn’t just recently get crazy. This has always been him. His ‘America’s Mayor’ years were the anomaly.”

“Sadly, I’m going to have to wait 17 years to find out what happens this November,” my friend chirped. “But I must be moving on. I want to check out the new Pontiacs, and I have a tape I forgot to return to Blockbuster last time I was in town. I probably own a fortune.”

“I don’t think you have anything to worry about.”

Joe Phalon
Joe Phalon, Contributing Writer
Contributing Writer

Joe was lured out of retirement by the opportunity to be a part of the Ridge View Echo. During a decades-long career in publishing and journalism, he has covered government on many levels from local school boards to the United States Supreme Court.

Along the way, Joe has worked at American Lawyer Magazine, The National Law Journal and The Record among other publications, and as the Press Officer of Columbia Law School. His work has been recognized with several first place awards from the Society of Professional Journalists and the New Jersey Press Association.

Being part of the Ridge View Echo brings Joe back to his roots and the kind of news coverage he loves: Telling the stories of people and local communities as well as keeping an eye on how their money is spent by their government officials.

Joe lives in Blairstown with his wife Rose, the founder of Quilting for a Cause, and their two wiener dogs. He is an artist in his spare time.