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The World According To Ben Part 23 ...The Gipper Had A Subie Secret


“Ronald Reagan Drove A BRAT.” (Free-Meter Rhyme)

Learned yesterday that Ronald Reagan drove a BRAT. An odd factoid. Don’t quite know what to do with that. I’m just trying to picture him—The Gipper, Mr. Red/White/Blue— Tooling around Rancho Del Cielo in a tiny Subaru.

That’s right: a Japanese trucklet with two extra seats in the bed. When pissed with young Ron and Patty, he stuck them there instead Of letting them share the tiny, cozy cab with Daddy. In his nascent dementia, did he think he was driving a Caddy, Just shrunken a bit about the waist an shoulders? Did he actually think it could safely climb boulders?

Could he imagine his Hard-Right supporters knowing That his carefully crafted image he was close to blowing… That, rather than a big Ford/Chevy/Dodge pickup with a gun rack, Ronnie was spending good old deregulated American greenbacks On a product of Fuji Heavy Industries?

Yes—that big conglomerate across the vast Pacific seas That, in World War II, churned out Nakajima planes As part of the empire’s effort to beat the brains Out of the “round eyes” and their wicked western ways. No doubt RWR had long since forgotten those days,

Instead hanging conspiratorially with Ollie North, Jim Baker, Liz Dole… Digging the beginnings of the no-more-middle-class hole… And, of course, staging photo ops at the ranch with a Jeep— All American—not wishing to appear like any ordinary creep Who would spend his Donald Regan-autographed cash on a ’Roo instead. But he did. Neocons/paleocons/decepticons, get it through your heads. Have nightmares about it in the dark of your foam-top nights. Let them wake you with flop-sweaty frights.

Accept it: Ronald Reagan drove a Subaru. Let the knowledge soak deep inside of you: That despite it being “Morning Again In America,” He was committing a sin that would drive you to hysteria. Again, blame it on early onset Alzheimer’s if you choose. In any case, as far as political symbolism goes, you lose.

© Verse-Case Scenario, LLC 2019 ------- The kernel of information imparted in this poem was embedded in an e-mail from Hagerty (my classic car insurance company when we still owned the Riviera). Personally, I trust car guys, car ladies, and car guys and car ladies who are also writers, quite implicitly. You can’t make this stuff up, and I’m sure they didn’t. I had myself fantasized owning a BRAT as a “next-if-ever collectible,” but one just sold in an online auction for $46,000. Current average auction price for a top-condition BRAT is $17K and change, so this was a case of two bidders who “just had to have it.” I further understand that the loser lost because his attempted winning bid didn’t register before the time limit expired. Wow. Just Wow. Might have been a $47K BRAT.

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