Sunday, November 8, 2009

Judging a book by its cover

When I was a kid in the 1940s, the world was a nice friendly place, full of nice friendly puzzles. When we picked up a glossy magazine, we were thrilled to be faced with the metaphysical challenge of deciding, for the Nth time, which of two identical twins was sporting a high-priced professional hairdo, and which one had settled for an affordable do-it-yourself perm using a product from the Toni company.

Maybe I should correct my opening sentence. Let's say, more accurately, that the world was almost a nice friendly place. But everybody was aware that this world had recently been marked indelibly by the barbarities of a monster named Hitler and his henchmen. In amassing piles of human hair at Auschwitz, the Nazi barbers were not concerned about who might have had a Toni.

In the case of these twin book covers, which one is the real thing? I can't answer that question, because neither book has been published yet. They won't be coming out until 17 November. For the moment, we can only judge them by their covers, and everybody knows that this is an unwise operation. But, since we've got nothing better to do...

In the case of both books, the photo on the cover depicts the same real—all too real—person: Sarah Palin, a former governor of Alaska who could have easily and rapidly become the most powerful leader on earth. All she needed, to attain this status, was a simple series of two events: (1) Barack Obama is defeated in the presidential election by John McCain, and (2) the winner of this election disappears abruptly from the political arena, for one reason or another.

My God, when you look back on those recent dangerous days, it was as if America were a drunken driver at the wheel of a big powerful automobile on a dark and busy highway.

Fortunately, there was no accident. Nobody got killed. Not even injured... apart, maybe, from the poor young guy named Levi Johnston, who no doubt chose an unsuitable moment to establish a deep contact with a potential First Vice-Daughter (where my use of the term "vice" has nothing to do with an implied lack of virtue).

The author of the future book on the left, entitled Going Rogue, is the heroine herself, Sarah Palin. As you can see, there's a nice friendly blue sky behind her. Concerning the title of the future book on the right, Going Rouge, the wording is quite close to the other title, but I'm not sure what it's supposed to mean. A French reader might be forgiven for imagining that it's a book about Sarah Palin's leftist tendencies, and the great conspiracy theory concerning her links to international Communism, symbolized by the dark storm clouds in the background of the cover image. But something tells me that this guess is probably wrong. Maybe the rouge in the title designates the crude reddish cosmetic powder that some women put on their face. So, maybe we should look closely at the two book covers, and ask a fundamental question: Which twin has the bad makeup?

As you can see, I don't really have much solid information to give you. So, maybe you might prefer to look at the website of the people behind Going Rouge [display], where you can already place an order for the future book. And, while we're awaiting these books, here's a video that throws a little light on the subject:

Did I say "light"? Red light, of course.

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