I'm still amazed by this Internet thing. Maybe because I'm not a techno-geek. (A geek, yes, because anyone who majored in ancient Greek is not normal. But I can be flummoxed by trying to open a can of beans.)
So this web deal verges on the supernatural to me. I'm astounded at how easy it is to contact anyone anywhere these days.
Thanks to the magical wonders of email, I recently reconnected with Fox News' Alan Colmes. (For blog readers outside the US, Alan is the liberal half of the enormously successful prime-time television debate show Hannity & Colmes in which Alan pairs-up with conservative Sean Hannity for nightly sparring.)
My quick email exchange with Alan released long-suppressed memories of my appearances years ago on his WPIX-FM radio show in New York—when, while a rock & roll musician I ran (clearly in response to some undiagnosed psychiatric disorder) as an independent candidate for US President.
Here's an example of our scintillating dialogue from a 1980 interview:
Alan: I'd like to be Secretary of Comedy.
Me: Well, my rule of patronage is "You scratch my back and I'll scratch my back."
Alan: What do you feel about war, John?
Me: I'm against it.
Alan: What are your feelings about marriage and the family?
Me: I think marriage is a wonderful thing. I think families are wonderful.
Alan: It's refreshing to hear this from a politician… Would you enforce strong drug laws?
Me: I'd like to institute a drug program of some kind. The first place I'd start is my band.
Alan: 1984 is kind of an Orwellian year… does that have any effect on your candidacy?
Me: Originally my motto was "Everybody's big brother," but I realized that might scare some people, so my new motto is: "Ask not what money can do for you, ask what you can do for money."
(I used several campaign mottos that year. My personal favorite was "If you can't trust a politician, whom can you trust?")
It turns out that my four-year campaign did not succeed in unseating the Republican incumbent, Ronald Reagan, in 1984 (though the write-in votes are still being tallied beneath the radar of the US Supreme Court).
The loss, and the hundreds of dollars I personally spent on the campaign, forced me to give up politics and become a management consultant. But let it be noted that Walter Mondale, the Democratic nominee, despite the prodigious resources available to him, won only one more state than I did that year. (This is indisputable proof of something, though I'm not sure exactly what.)
But I remain astonished that technology has made it so effortless to reconnect with friends and acquaintances of bygone ages—which can stir remembrances (significant or otherwise) of things past.