Letter From The Editor 

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I was all set to write a column on these nutty reality television shows — especially the ones about peoples' jobs. You've seen them. There are now shows about loggers, truck drivers, commercial fishermen, pawnbrokers, pest-control guys, even guys who make fish tanks! It's insane, but clearly there is money to be made in coming up with these concepts.

So, before I decided not to write a column about the subject, I'd come up with a few new shows: Like Sheet-Rockers, in which a family of burly, battlin' guys goes around putting up drywall, gettin' all dusty and stuff, and leaving empty fast-food bags in peoples' bedrooms. And there was Cool Dudes, about a family of burly, battlin' guys who go to peoples' houses, inspect their AC unit, and try to talk them into new ductwork. Also, I had Weed Whackers, about a family of burly, battlin' guys who go around cutting grass, piling giant black bags of debris in the street, and cutting down hydrangeas by mistake. TV gold, I tell you.

It would have been a great column. Unfortunately, as I was about to finish it, Randy Haspel sent me this week's Rant (p. 63). Now I'm forced to change up and waste all those great ideas.

So instead, I'm going to write about Colombian hookers. As you know, the fallout continues from the incident in Cartagena, in which members of the president's Secret Service detail hired prostitutes for a big party in their hotel. Naturally, Republicans, who refuse to give President Obama any credit for killing Osama bin Laden, are all too happy to try to pin direct responsibility for this incident on him. That's politics as usual, hardly worth mentioning. What is worth mentioning is that were it not for the fact that prostitution is legal in Colombia, these shenanigans would likely never have been exposed.

As we now know, there was a dispute over fees. The Colombian hooker felt she'd been, er, stiffed on the agreed-upon price. After arguing vociferously for a while, the agent paid the woman a lesser amount and sent her on her way, no doubt, thinking, "What's she going to do, go to the police? Ha ha."

Of course, that's exactly what she did. As a legitimate businesswoman, she filed a complaint and demanded justice. The cops investigated, and, voila, an international incident ensued. There's a lesson there, somewhere, no doubt. And maybe a reality television show. Cartagena Hookers, anyone?

Bruce VanWyngarden
brucev@memphisflyer.com

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