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  • Here's a little Cowbird Presidential Quizz for you, kids. Multiple Choice. Are you ready?

    Q: What do Al Gore and I have in common?

    A. You also helped to invent the internet?
    B. You produced an award-winning documentary film on Global Warming?
    C. You won the presidential race, but still didn't get the job?
    D. None of the Above?
    E. All of the Above?
    F. Phone a Friend?

    If you guessed "C.", you are correct! Like Al, I also ran for president. Like Al, I won my race. Like Al, I somehow did not get the job.

    In 2006, on Presidents' Day (of course), I answered the call to duty, and tried out for the Washington Nationals Racing Presidents, their 12-foot tall mascots who run a race every game after the 4th inning at Nationals Park (RFK Stadium back then). That's me as George Washington. Clearly in the lead at that point, and I pulled away down the stretch, and won by 10 furlongs, easy.

    45 different contenders entered the race, and each suite up, 4 at a time in the George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Teddy Roosevelt, and Abraham Lincoln gigantic heads, and ran two 100-yard races against each other. Most of the contenders were 20-something or 30-something. I was the only one over 40 - I was 52. I won both of my races.

    I was in the second group to hit the track, and I got my suit on first, got out there, and quickly figured out that it was more about balance than speed. If you tried to go too fast, that big old head would start to wobble, and you were in trouble. A steady pace out of the gates, with slowly increasing momentum, keeping the head straight up, was the key. I used my head!

    I won both of my races, but did not get selected to be a Racing President. I contend that it was age discrimination! I'm sure that the "suits" in the Nationals law offices worried about me having a heart attack in that 12 foot head in the middle of a game in the hot, humid D.C. summertime. I coulda been a contendah!

    In case anyone is wandering, I am available to be a college lecturer, and will gladly help produce a documentary film on global warming.

    Move over, Al. I feel your pain, buddy!
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