Karl Rove Diaries
since Sen. Bob Graham announced that he was running for president,
the media have been having a field day mocking his quirky
habit of keeping a meticulous log of his every waking moment.
(Since 1977, he’s filled some 4,000 2-by-3 inch notebooks
with the daily details of his life, including where he slept,
what he ate, whom he met, and what he wore.) Some have labeled
Graham’s practice a disturbing fetish; others have praised
it as a sign of extreme self-discipline. Still others wonder
whether it was necessary for so many trees to make the ultimate
sacrifice just so that we might know that Sen. Graham wore
khakis and had the grilled salmon at his 12:47 lunch yesterday.
Unfortunately, Graham’s chronicle makes for disappointingly
dull reading. His entries, while scrupulous, are strangely
detached (“8:40 . . . bedroom, bathroom—change to blue shorts—apply
scalp medication”) and offer little useful insight into either
Bob Graham the man or how America is governed.
How much better it would be if we had an obsessively detailed
running log of the daily activities of Karl Rove—the man his
biographer dubbed “the most powerful unelected person in America.”
Now, that would be a diary worth poring over. The devil, after
all, is in the details and Rove’s details would surely reveal
his true nature.
It might go something like this:
Log 6.9.03 (Monday)
5:05: Awake. Castigate self for sleeping in. Remove snooze
bar from clock radio with pliers.
5:05-5:15: Bathroom. Brush teeth, massage gums, trim nose
hairs. Practice affable grin (in mirror).
5:15: Exchange customary morning greeting with Darby: “Good
Morning, Mr. Co-President,” “Good Morning, Mrs. Co-First Lady.”
5:17: Kiss Darby (cheek).
5:18: Start to get dressed. Hesitate over underwear drawer.
Boxers or briefs?
5:19: Call Frank Luntz to ask him to run quick Insta-poll.
Luntz asleep. Not fully “on board?”
5:25: Crunch numbers (they come back indecisive).
5:26: Decide to “go commando.” It’s more “on message”: all
5:35-6:35: Kitchen. B’fast: Waffles (syrup), Lucky Charms
w/milk (2 percent), coffee (black), Metamucil (Orange). Skim
sampling of fair and balanced news coverage: Washington
Times, FreeRepublic.com, Wall Street Journal editorial
page, Weekly Standard, Newsmax.com, Fox News (Remember
to send Ailes another gift basket for war coverage).
6:50-6:55: Walk to car, enter car, close car door, fasten
seatbelt, adjust rearview mirror. Realize I’ve forgotten keys.
Use family-friendly exclamation, “Darn!” Undo seatbelt, exit
car, walk back to house, locate keys. Repeat initial car entry.
Then repeat again (just to be safe).
6:55-7:12: Drive to work. Listen to Dobson’s Focus on the
Family. Notice that he hits talking points word for word.
Smile w/satisfaction. Switch to lesbian strippers on Stern
7:13 (LATE!!!)-8:00: Staff meeting in WWO (West Wing Office).
Answer e-mails and excoriate low-level aide for no good reason
while meeting w/Dan Bartlett and Margaret Spellings to discuss
best way to counter negative fallout from child tax credit
decision: Senate plan? House plan? Invade Syria?
8:03-8:05: Exchange pleasantries in hallway w/A. Card. Utilize
affable-but- disarmingly distant smile. Note Card has switched
aftershave (sign that he’s looking for private sector job?).
8:06-8:07: Walk to Oval Office (feel the awe and fear of those
8:08-8:48: Oval Office. Meet w/W, discuss next phase in “Operation
Landslide”: W scuba diving to submerged submarine to meet
with Navy SEALS. Secret Service opposed (still fail to grasp
political realities). Undermine A. Card (too easy!). Mention
8:48-8:53: Stay behind to talk to W about nickname problem:
Stress overwhelming preference for “Boy Genius” over “Turd
8:54-8:55: Walk back to West Wing (feel chafing; regret earlier
choice re: underwear).
8:56: Call Darby, ask her to bring over boxers (the ones with
9:14-9:16: Call Ari Fleischer. Tell him to blackball next
reporter who asks about lack of Iraqi WMD.
9:17-9:47: Meet w/lobbyist for tobacco industry. Swap war
stories from my Philip Morris days. Smoke two Marlboro reds
(old time’s sake).
9:51: Suddenly not sure which to be today: fox or hedgehog.
9:52: Realize I can be both (hell, I’m Karl Rove). Feel the
9:55-10:55: Leave screaming, over-the-top phone message for
author James Moore—(show him how Bush’s Brain really
10:56: Take high-blood-pressure medicine and lozenge for sore
12:10-1:00: Working lunch (salmon, garlic mashed potatoes,
iced tea). Map out entire day-to-day strategy for 2006 midterm
races (early prediction: barring blowback from ’04 invasion
of Syria/Iran/Pakistan, we gain 5 seats in Senate and 12 in
House with demonization of unpatriotic treasonous Democrats).
2:15: Show John McCain what war is really like: spread vicious
rumor about him. Black lovechild arrested for al Qaeda ties.
2:17: Watch McCain rumor being disseminated on Fox.
3:05: Have fleeting, unprovoked sympathetic thought about
old benefactor Ken Lay.
3:06: Banish thought forever.
5:01-7:30: Attend RNC fundraiser. Mingle. Accept praise and
adulation. Also checks. (Overuse affable smile?) Wonder if
I am officially a rock star now (Yes!).
7:35-8:00: Drive home. Listen to books-on-tape recording of
Slander (make joke to self re: Coulter being our hottest
8:01: Walk from driveway to house. Open front door. Karl Rove’s
9:28-10:15: Watch TIVOed replay of American Idol final.
Smile to self for engineering Ruben’s win.
11:07: Shower + dress for sleep (blue striped PJs). Draft
tomorrow’s “to do” list: Give grief. Make threats. Impugn
patriotism. Intimidate media. Pursue bait-and-switch policies.
Strong-arm donors. Manipulate. Plot. Connive. Pick up dry
12:05: Kiss Darby goodnight (lips, but no tongue).
12:06: Asleep. Dream that I’m the most powerful unelected
person in American history (Oh wait, I am!).