Monday, February 21, 2011

My new boyfriend

Happy President's Day!  I have been reading the book 1776 by David McCullough and I think I'm a tiny bit in love with George Washington.  He was so brave, and heroic, and tall, and such a good leader.  (Sigh.)  What really did it for me was when I read a story to a kindergarten class last week about how Washington returned General Howe's dog when it was captured by the Yankees during the revolutionary war.  The Yankees wanted to keep it as it would serve as a blow to the moral of the British, but keeping someone's pet for spite was too much for George, and he called a cease-fire and returned the dog.  Awwww!!  (It's a true story.  I looked it up.) I also recently watched the HBO miniseries John Adams, which was wonderful, and David Morse of Hack fame played George Washington.  Oh, you have never heard of the show Hack?  How embarrassing for you.  It was a show about a cab driver (David Morse) and Mitch and I liked it because the Hack character would push people down on a regular basis.  David Morse is HUGE.  He can really push. And he makes a great GW.

David Morse as GW
Of course, I don't think anything will come of my infatuation with George Washington, so don't worry about my marriage.  George Washington will never come between Mitch and me.  For one thing, he's 238 years older than me.  He and I together would be grosser than Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta-Jones.  Also, he had worse teeth than me.  By the time he was president he only had one natural tooth left so he wore dentures which were NOT made out of wood, but out of ivory, gold, springs, and at least one cow tooth (gross), and although I am in no position to criticize someone else's teeth, I would not want to have any long frenchers with someone with cow teeth.  (No offense, Martha)

He was a snappy dresser.  He had his uniforms and suits made for him in London by a tailor and he always looked impeccable.  Most men of the time wore wigs, but not George.  He wore his own hair in a pony and powdered it white.  He wasn't a big fan of bathing though.  He thought too many baths were unhealthy.  I bet he didn't smell all that great, unless his hair powder was made by Drakkar Noir, but I'm pretty sure they didn't have Drakkar back then. (just kidding, Drakkar: yuck)

my  boyfriend
George was a fantastic horse rider. (Horses! EEEE!) Unfortunately during the French and Indian War he had two horses shot out from under him.  TWO!  He was really broken up about that because he loved animals.  He was a dog breeder and really loved his dogs.  He had really cute names for his dogs like Sweetlips and Truelove.  Awww!  (But also he had some dogs named Drunkard and Tipler.  That could be a red flag.  I don't know if I would want to have a relationship with a man with a bunch of alcoholic dogs.)

He never had biological children of his own.  Some historians speculate that because he had smallpox as a young adult it might have caused him to be sterile.  (Sterility: not a deal-breaker) Martha had two children from her previous marriage before she married George (her first husband died) and George raised them and loved them like they were his own.  Unfortunately they both died young.  Then George and Martha raised their two grandchildren.

George was a Southern plantation man and had slaves.  Lots and lots of slaves.  (Slavery, that's kind of a deal-breaker for me.)  Of course he set all his slaves free in his will, but that's kind of a fuck-you gift to the black man of 1799 isn't it?  "You're free, now beat it!"  I don't know.  Probably.  He had misgivings about slavery but never spoke publicly about it because he didn't want the country torn apart by the slavery issue.  (OMG!  Predict the future much?!) He left orders in the will that the older slaves be clothed and fed and provided for, and the younger ones to be educated and trained in an occupation, so, that's something, I guess.

So anyway, despite the 238 year age difference, my insistence on basic hygiene, and my opposition to alcoholic pets and slavery, I think I am still in love with George Washington.  I can't help myself!

Happy Birthday, George!


  1. What a great post. I learned things I never knew. I wonder where the whole false teeth made of wood came from?

  2. I could have love George also!
    Great Post!

  3. Okay, are you seeing the trend here?

    TWO horses shot out (and killed?) from under him.

    TWO kids from another marriage that "died Young"?

    TWO dogs with alcoholic names?

    This un-bathed dude sounds a tad sketchy to me...



  4. It sounds like someone needs to change her Facebook status.

  5. dbs: Ha ha, I already did post my love for GW on FB. Everyone knows.

    Stephanie: You are Canadian so I understand your suspicion of GW. But watch it, Sister!

    Eva, people thought his teeth were wood because when ivory gets stained it turns wood-color brown.

  6. Dana McKibbage WaldbilligFebruary 27, 2011 at 11:54 AM

    As a history major, I can't believe how much I learned in this post! There were at least a dozen things I never knew about GW. Thank you, Sarah, for being a bigger nerd than I am.


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