The Blue Raccoon

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Gurney Tourney
Political puns and judge bribing

Image of a past Gurney Tourney, from the site.

Just taking a respite on this still, humid Saturday, from which all wind and temperate nature has been taken due to the activities of Ike in the Gulf. And I'm practicing avoidance from editing that I'm really having difficulty with.

Through my day job, I pulled a stint as one of five judges in the 10th Annual AnthemGurney Tourney this morning. The event benefits the Hospital Hospitality Center and the VCU Pauley Center. Various groups of medical students and professionals create "floats" built around the humble and utilitarian hospital gurney.

I wondered, given the fractious tenor of the times, if there'd be some attempt at political humor. My thought was that due to the sensitivity of the issues, the competitors would stay away from this topic. But, thankfully, I was selling short both the sense of fun and inventiveness of these participants.

There was a group of "First Ladies" who were from the VCU Health Systems Performance Improvement office, sponsored by UPS. All real women, no drag that I could see, and they dressed themselves as the current crop of political wives, and Sarah Palin.

Another came from the VCU Hume-Lee Transplant Center, sponsored by Owens and Minor, and this had both Obama and McCain emerging from a black, home made Humvee while two quite striking female detail of security guards in black shorts and boots provided unsmiling protection. The McCain was taller than the Obama, but they both went down the judges line, shaking hands and urging us not to vote for the other guy.

As judge, you are given a curly white Rumpole wig, a robe and the tourney crews attempt grand measures of bribery. This involves bags and sacks of candy, wine, fake money, and my favorite came from Cindy McCain, who handed me a 40 of Bud saying with great sweetness, "A gift from my family business." She also plied us with her famous oatmeal cookies.

The Bracco-sponsored VCUHS Radiology--Stony Point was a great favorite, with an elaborate tribute to Alice In Wonderland. The imaginative and colorful MCV Foundation sponsored Massey Center/Thomas Palliative Care entry featured pretty girls dressed as butterflies and a healing garden of paradise.

One of the groups--I don't remember which--included an actual cold bottle of Coors Light. During the formal judging back in the Hospitality House library I opened mine. Guess I looked like a lush, but goodness, the day was quite warm and those wigs are hot. And why waste a cold, well, sort of a beer? I applied the bottle to my cooling points--temples, wrists--before ingesting.

But the biggest joke of the day was, in the First Ladies tableaux, the gurney was providing respite for a very pregnant looking young woman who, well, resembled who you think she would've needed to resemble. And they all had their political wives waves down.

Meantime, at the risk of redundancy for the billion-eyed audience, by way of Facebook came this Funny Or Die parody featuring a long-time fave of mine, Gina Gershon -- whew! -- lampooning Palin.

Gina Gershon is, well, stammer-inspiring. Gina Gershon in a bikini, wearing glasses and brandishing a fire arm is...well...quite compelling. I don't know why this is and I suspect that I am not the only man out there who shares similar sensations.

And now my feelings are all confused.

See more Gina Gershon videos at Funny or Die

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