It produced Drew Carey, who used to be an affable large man who hosted “Whose Line Is It Anyway?” and now is slowly melting into Bob Barker. LeBron James used to be there as well, but he left.
I have been to Cleveland a couple of times because the airplane I was riding insisted on stopping in Cleveland. Airplanes love to visit Cleveland. No matter where you want to go, the airplane wants to make sure you visit Cleveland, too. You could be going to Florida and the airplane will still take you to Cleveland first, just to show you all that it has to offer. The airport does seem well ventilated and has good snacks. But airports can mislead you.
Maybe it was the airport that did it (or maybe not; airplanes don’t seem as fixated on it as they once were), but the Republican National Convention is going to be in Cleveland in 2016.
Having been to the last Republican convention, in Tampa, Fla., (reports of exciting times at Tampa’s strip clubs were, alas, greatly exaggerated) I have a solid idea of what it takes to host the kind of Republican Convention that will make candidates wired, pundits overjoyed and journalists feeling happy, but tired. Here is a packing list, so the city can stock up well in advance.
-Real Americans (every good convention needs lots of these so that reporters who did not pack their convention access badges, or brought the wrong badge so that they can only get into the convention equivalent of the Outer Rim Territories (slogan: “If there’s a bright center to this convention, you are in the cordoned-off media section that it’s farthest from!”), will have someone to interview. It means a great deal to us. If possible, these Real Americans should be middle-aged and willing to talk a lot about their hopes and vague senses of what the candidates’ personalities are like.)
-Traveling protesters (preferably with signs implying that one or more of the candidates are going to be roasting in Hell. Ideally these protesters show up at every single stop on the campaign, even though these stops require lots of costly air travel and the protesters’ only belongings appear to be big signs that don’t have spaces between words that usually have spaces between them.)
-Some water (bodies of water are good so that TV reporters can stand in front of them)
-Bunting (can’t have a convention without bunting)
-Guy with a Cat in the Hat by Dr. Seuss parody book called The New Democrat by Dr. Truth, who mysteriously shows up everywhere you go
-Big pool of coffee for reporters and others
-Dangerous-looking place for you to get lost while looking for Real Americans
-Distinctive food item that everyone can try a whole bunch of times and describe with surprise and alarm, as though they have never been anywhere in the country that wasn’t the Mid-Atlantic Seaboard before
-One or two very obvious places to visit — like, say, a big array of strip clubs — that lots of hopeful reporters can base their stories around, only to be frustrated by actual events
-A chair, in case Clint Eastwood makes it back.