Tonight, I face a difficult choice. Watch two bitter rivals square off for the final time as they near the end of an epic campaign? Or watch the presidential debate?
The other option, of course, is game seven of the National League Championship Series between the St. Louis Cardinals and the San Franisco Giants. As a New Yorker transplanted to the Bay Area, I feel a certain fondness for the boys in orange and black. Not to the extent that I feel for the Mets, but I unreservedly want the Giants to win.
Obviously, the baseball game offers more entertainment value. Political debates CAN entertain, in much the same way that NASCAR races can entertain: Though overwhelmingly repetitive and predictable, you can pretty much rely on at least one spectacular crash. I still regret that I missed the seminal moment when Mitt "Bluebeard" Romney first referred to his "binders full of women." Who knows what Mittens will let slip tonight as he and President Obama square off over foreign policy? Over the summer, Romney nearly got us into a war with England; perhaps tonight he'll advocate a pre-emptive strike on Canada's syrup-industrial complex.
(Actually, that could get him my vote. . . .But I digress.)
I know that as a citizen, as a teacher, as an ostensible role model to impressionable youth, I should probably set an example by watching the debate. And I admit a certain guilt over the fact that I am currently watching the game (Giants are up 2-0!) and will probably keep it on even when the debate gets underway. But let's face it: I've decided whom I'm voting for (OK, given my family background, I had basically decided that pre-natally). Unless Obama stands at the lectern and advocates random carpet-bombing of Western Europe, nothing that happens at the debate will change my mind. And even then. . . .
So who gets my vote? The Giants!