We can return now to our game shows and soap operas.
On many a day for the last five months, Sean Spicer starred in the best show on daytime TV, the White House daily press briefing. Nothing beat the way Spicer, President Donald Trump’s press secretary, got huffy and red and served up, in the immortal words of one of his defenders, “alternative facts.”
Spicer’s performances became a gauge of his boss’ always brooding id. Would he make nice today or try to bully? Tell true facts or make it up? Cajole or command?
Spicer seemed to confirm reports Tuesday that he’ll be giving up the job of press secretary and moving to a new role in the Trump administration. The White House, he said in classic Spicer-speak, “is looking for ways to do a better job of articulating the president’s message.”
Sad. We’ll miss those “Spicey” sketches by Melissa McCarthy on Saturday Night Live. She caught the vibe.
There was the time Spicer insisted Trump’s inauguration was witnessed by “the largest audience” ever. You knew he didn’t believe it.
There was the time he insisted that even Hitler never sank to using chemical weapons, forgetting about the Holocaust.
There was the time he insisted the president’s ban on travelers from Muslim countries was not a ban, though the president kept calling it a ban.
Spicer caught grief from both sides. Reporters would question his facts. Then the president, having watched on TV, would question his suit.
At one presser, Spicer wore a flag pin upside down, an international signal of distress.
As if anybody had to be told.