And for whatever reason, like we all needed a reason, there’s a profile of Tina Brown! What is a Tina Brown? “’Tina’s a revolutionary leader,’ [Hendrik] Hertzberg says by way of explaining why she left The New Yorker. ‘Revolutionary leaders go wrong when they stay too long. George Washington went back to the farm; Fidel Castro didn’t.’”
Now, I’m no student of American history, mostly because my high school history teacher was so depressed and endrunkened that he committed suicide not long after my American history semester ended, but, basically, George Washington retired twice. (To the “farm,” which… calling that a “farm” is a stretch. I think we would call it a “plantation”! At the end it was 8000 acres and the house had 20 rooms.) Washington retired for the final time, sort of, in 1797, after his second term as President, at which point he began making whiskey and then promptly went back into the army the next year, to start planning a war with France, and then pretty much died. (If only we’d finally finished off France back then!) The first time he retired, after the Revolution, was when, lesse, the battle of Fort Washington (uptown, baby) was in 1776, and then, finally, finally, he got to retire at the end of 1783, just before Christmas, because of the stupid British, who never know when to leave a party. But he “retired”… for fewer than four years, because beginning in May of 1787, he was honchoing the Constitutional Convention. And within that period, he was writing constantly and his diary for 1784, for instance, records his arduous business travel schedule. Hmm, yeah, actually that does sound a lot like Tina Brown! Score one for Mr. Hertzberg. Now is when I would Photoshop a historical hat on a picture of Tina Brown if it wasn’t Friday.