ComPost Live with Alexandra Petri

Apr 09, 2013

Join us next Tuesday to laugh, cry, and dish about the moments that amused you, shocked you, or caused you to yell things that frightened the other people on the subway.

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Connect on Twitter: @PostLive | @petridishes

Hello, all! How's squirrel week treating you? I remember this time last year we were up against a chat about squirrel vocalizations. 

Also, spring! 

If this is not about composting then why is it called "ComPost"?

Just print out a few pages and festoon them around your tulips and tell me it doesn't encourage them.

I believe I have a political compromise that will work politically in Virginia: Gays can marry in Virginia, but they can't have sex.

And this will be a good way to get on track to ban all forms of sex, which is really what the people of The Great State of Virginia require, never mind that slogan.

I think I can see the AG approving of this position.

I think one should attempt to communicate with squirrels. Although the last time I was in a park mimicking squirrel sounds and attempting to wave my tail in communications with their tails, park security took me away.

See, what you need is a government grant. 

Gene Weingarten tried matchmaking in last weekend's Date Lab. How do you think you would do in the same field?


I've accidentally set up four of my friends since arriving in DC, and I am confident that I can work the same accidental magic on the general populace! 

I think Gene's criteria would have made a grand match if they had to get off a boat and be wed instantly, but the qualities he identified might not necessarily be what kindles a first-date spark.

Sounds more ominous to me than shark week. I still don't understand why squirrels need protection. It seems that we have more of them than we need, and that the ones in my neighborhood carry a surfeit of avoirdupois.

I greatly appreciate the image of the squirrels with a "surfeit of avoirdupois" bumbling around your neighborhood. Are we talking Chris Christie-level squirrel or William Howard Taft-level?

Dave Barry wages an unrelenting war against squirrels on his blog. One week seems inadequate as a response.

Squirrels and lawn grass are two species that seem to have been the unintentional beneficiaries of the human takeover of the planet. I mean, grass. Who would have expected? Also, bulldogs are doing much better than anyone would have anticipated, given the way they're constructed -- although since we did that to them, they might not count. 

Nobody was talking about Thatcher. But Annette....

It was funny to watch the conversation pivot suddenly. I mean, priorities must be maintained.

I have a friend who had never seen a squirrel until she was in her 30s and moved to California. From Adelaide.


Would you please find a date for me? I am a nerd who loves Star Wars, humor, and communicating with squirrels in the park.

I think I found your soulmate.

but lots and lots of him. Mostly in my yard. How many Christies equal a Taft?

I'm going to open this up to the group...

Watching this hashtag get misread was the highlight of my day yesterday.

That was indeed a highlight. Cowards die many times before their deaths, or people on Twitter whose names can be misinterpreted in hashtags.


OK, I have the new slogan" "Virginia is for Lovers, Just Not THAT Kind of Love."

Virginia would do anything for lovers, but they won't do THAT. 

If squirrels ever figure out how to interbeed with sharks.... The consequences are unimaginable. Wait. SNL. Land sharks. I guess someone imagined them.

But did they envisage the dread WATERSQUIRREL?

According to this ( Chris weighs as much as Taft did.

I guess bathtubs across America are just larger now so we don't notice.

Hey! That other person answered before I did. I would actually have said more Mike Huckabee-level: Would be cute if he lost the weight and could probably do it. Chris Christie-level, to me, means that the weight is the first thing you notice about him. Taft-level, to me, means that the weight is the ONLY thing you notice about him, even if he is helping an old lady across the street or is perched on a Scrooge McDuck-like pile of double eagle coins.

This is accurate. 

I believe the reason so many people like "Mad Men" is we all wish we could have jobs where we can just sit around all day and think while drinking alcohol, smoking cigarettes, and having affairs with co-workers and people we interview. Sadly, the days of advertising being like that are gone, and the only profession where one can still do that is journalism.

What is advertising like these days? I always think it's changed and grown demure, and then the Super Bowl comes around and it seems like everyone's on some substance I didn't know you could ingest without dying. 

"I believe the reason so many people like "Mad Men" is we all wish we could have jobs where we can just sit around all day and think while drinking alcohol, smoking cigarettes, and having affairs with co-workers and people we interview." In that case, what explains the appeal of "The Walking Dead"? Or "Girls"?

1) Zombies

2) Schadenfreude

What? No way. The first thing you notice about him is that mustache. (As the late great Barbara Holland said in her hilarious "Hail To The Chiefs," people mix up Taft with Cleveland, which is ridiculous. Cleveland looked like a walrus, Taft like a water buffalo.")

He does look like a water buffalo! Although I think Teddy looked as much like one as he did. 

We are all anxiously waiting: Was your meatloaf still good, or did you finally throw it away without trying some more, or is it still in your refrigerator reaching that point where maybe you shouldn't see if it was what made you sick....

So, I doggedly ate my way through about half of it just to get my money's worth, and my stomach grumbled but took it. Then I threw it away. 

Looks like I won't have to move to South Park after all!

Mazel tov!

I tried dating Jedi squirrel, but it was really hard getting seated into restaurants. Do you have any other dating suggestions?

Even if, like Taft, he has sleep apnea from his avoirdupois, there are devices available today to keep him from suffering too badly from apnea. But judging by Chris's activities and demeanor, he doesn't have apnea. Yet.

So basically what we meant to ask was: squirrel person, did they look like water buffalo with sleep apnea?

Yes, but with Teddy there were so many other things about him to notice as soon as you looked at him. Like those teeth. And what he was saying. Because he was always saying something.

Speaking of which, how do we feel about the new Teddy-Taft racing? And apparently they'll be joined by Selina Meyer of Veep fame?

Your stomach or the meatloaf?


If President Obama refers to a female politician as "easy on the eyes," might he really mean that she is good at connecting with independent voters?

Or a talented oculist! 

But, see, this is the kind of backbending spin that is generally frowned upon.

I fear I already mentioned this, but in case I did not, let me tell you a meatloaf making secret: Wrap bacon around it.

Frank N. Furter already shared that tip!

I never gave squirrels much thought--certainly did not try to mow them down when they ran across the road in front of me. Then they invaded my elderly parents' house--moving from the attic down through the walls to erupt from a hole they made in the kitchen wall. They sprang forth directly underneath the table in the breakfast nook. There ensued a chase with a broom that sent the squirrels scrambling over the draperies (which they pulled down) and furniture until they were finally shooed out the front door. None of us had much good to say about squirrels after that.

Oh no! That does not sound optimal!

This reminds me, where's Squirrel Bopper this week?

Why don't the Nationals ever have racing Vice Presidents?: Nelson Rockefeller versus Hannibal Hamlin versus Dick Cheney versus Joe Biden should draw in lots more fans.

And don't forget Andrew Johnson and Gerald Ford!

OOOoooo. Is that a boy nerd or a girl nerd? Forget I asked. I'm a nerd too. I can't afford to be fussy.

As long as you're not a squirrel.

Are we still allowed to dance the "Time Warp" in Virginia?

This was never permitted.

I asked about the squark. :)


of course!

Currently at the top of the page under the masthead. I would like to see the algorithm that decides the priority of listing. Why does Penney get the coveted And Also Starring last credit?

Hey, I'm surprised enough that Margaret Thatcher is preceding Annette. 

If Obama were praising you in a speech, what awkward feature of your would he compliment?

Probably my meatloaf-making skills. 

This won't make sense unless you know I have a cat as my profile photo: Your new dating suggestion is a match!

Calloo callay!

I am a boy nerd, the one going out on dates with the the jedi squirrel and jedi cat. Sadly, those have been my two best dates in my life. Well, the only dates in my life, I was going to say we need a place for nerds to meet, and then I remembered, I have my tickets to Comic Con!


Speaking of nerd gatherings, although not really, I'm 
already excited for the International Whistling Convention next week. Whom do we think is drawn to international whistling? Actual talented musicians? People who aren't musical, but love to whistle? Or just good-natured random aspirants? Either way? I'm hoping to place 43rd or higher! 

Wow, he's a brilliant scientist and he knows about bacon? I should consider studying with him. Think about what he might do with me in just seven days.

(six long nights)

Barack, dude, Kathleen Kane, Attorney General of Pennsylvania, is way hotter.

People keep saying this. I'm not sure these are waters into which he wants to wade any deeper.

Are you entered in the whistling contest? Maybe we form a cheerleading squad for you? What should we cheer?

"Don't crack up! Don't crack up!" "Whistle better!" Er. Maybe hold the cheering squad.

Aaaaah, my ears! Stop whistling in the grocery stores!!!!!!!!

Apologies. They say that whistling is always infinitely more pleasant for the person doing it than the person on the receiving end.

Did you hear the IRS may monitor your Facebook and other social media accounts, use to verify that the business deduction is not pictured as a non-business item. So, no more using your filing cabinet for storing your alcohol and for use as a squirrel haven..

Dang it! 

But in theory, that's work-related. This chat is work-related. Right? 

I had an intern who was reprimanded by our boss for whistling too loudly, Sigh, some people don't appreciate the arts.

Send that intern to North Carolina for the contest! Tis not too late to seek a newer world!

Was it you who arranged the date between Taylor Swift and Jedi Squirrel? I can't wait to hear what song emerges from that.

I will download that single! 

Taylor Swift, Single, releases Taylor Swift Single, as they say

My uncle, like the rest of my Irish family that whistles like it breathes, was told by his secretary when he was promoted to executive ranks, that it was time for him to stop whistling and dancing in the hallway.

Aw, heavy lies the head that wears the executive rank, I guess.

What would be the least useful category to be the World Champion in?

I don't know, but that's my life dream.

So I bought a bag for the first time in a while and they changed the lime to a nasty green apple. This is a failure on par with changing JC Penny into a no sale zone. What is happening to America?!?

In This Chat
Alexandra Petri
Alexandra Petri writes the ComPost, a lighter take on the news and issues of the day, and she contributes to the Post editorial page. Her work has appeared in venues such as The Huffington Post, The Week,,, Collegehumor, and The Harvard Crimson. She has appeared on Jeopardy!, Showbiz Tonight and Canadian radio, and she has performed at Boston's Comedy Studio and Comedy Connection. She would love to be on your TV show, radio show, Daily Show, HBO special, or to be an honored guest (or regular guest) at your Bar Mitzvah. She is the author of two books (unpublished, but contact her!), two screenplays, three plays, one musical, and one memoir (Ernest Hemingway's A Moveable Feast.)
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