Endless Bummer

Imagine for a second that you aren't an A1 major newspaper reporter with a White House beat who has real insider contacts to play games with, but rather, a lowly wire-reporting journalist with the task of writing up George Bush's stupid pet tricks in this roasting summer of 2005. Imagine you are Christopher Smith, a "Today George Bush cut brush on his ranch with a chainsaw" writer for the Associated Press. It's week four of five, and while the cooler kids get to cover and smother Cindy Sheehan, you're left staring at piles of neatly sawn non-indigenous Flemish elm.

It would be a relief to find out that while Bush will be doing the same assortment of pet tricks, you at least will be in a new setting in which to report them. Christopher Smith had just that kind of luck this week.

George Bush took a breather from his vacation in Crawford for a jaunt Utah and Idaho, and while his time in Mormon country was spicy enough for a tear gas session on the populace, it was the beauties of Idaho (admittedly also quite heavily Mormon) that got Christopher Smith's juices flowing:


DONNELLY, Idaho -- President Bush spent Tuesday at a resort in the Idaho Rockies, mountain biking around a rugged trail circuit before going fishing in a small pontoon boat on a wind-whipped lake.

"I'm kind of hanging loose, as they say," Bush said earlier outside of his lodge at the 9-month-old Tamarack Resort, where he was spending two nights away from his Texas ranch.
Gripping stuff.

You'll be disappointed as I was to learn that Bush didn't catch any small mouth bass during his fishing trip. However, in my recent road trip through the Gem State, I snagged three. Bush got all heavy and elliptical about the beauty and wonders of Idaho: "It's a beautiful state."

I too have something to say about Idaho -- and for that matter, the rest of the states in this region of the country -- and the two newest things on the block for every small town in them since I last visited the area two years ago: they ALL have espresso shacks where you can order decaf soy lattes, and they ALL have wifi even in their dankest motels. Make of it what you will....

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