Thursday, September 4, 2008

Her speech

It annoys me that adjectives such as "electrifying" are being applied to the speech Sarah Palin gave at the GOP convention last night. Hearing Sarah speak has always annoyed me, even when I've agreed with her point of view (shockingly not often, but it has happened.) I have always found her method of delivery to be terribly annoying...grating even. I've frequently felt as though she is being vaguely condescneding, but that never seemed quite right in terms of my problem. Yet, I was unable to put a finger on what my problem is, exactly.

Last night while listening to her speak I realized precisely what I find so annoying about her delivery (and maybe why it feels vaguely condescending.) It's because when she is speaking in public-- ESPECIALLY when she is reading a prepared speech or statement as opposed to something more extemporaneous-- she sounds exactly like someone sounds when they're reading a book out loud to a child. The reason I can't stand listening to her speak is because she sounds like she is telling me a story. Of course! Now it makes so much sense.

Of course, this realization has the potential to sound like a vaguely "anti-mother" or anti woman/ mother in politics sort of thing. I don't mean it that way. Even though I think Sara is a crazy conservative, even though I disagree with her on most social and political issues and even though having 5 kids seems socially and ecologically selfish and irresponsible to my personal way of thinking, I don't actually have a problem with her being an active mother and successful politician. I'm delighted to see the two in combination. In fact, that is one of the few things I do like about her. (I also like how she is the quintessential Alaskan woman in so many ways. The things the national media thinks are odd, like fishing, field dressing a moose and snowmachining...I like those things about her.)

I want kids someday (2, 3 max...not 5) and I want to be actively involved in a successful career. I have a great deal of respect for the fact that she is pulling off both. It doesn't mean I like her reading her speeches to me as though she were telling a story to her children. That's just not an oratorical style I can throw my support or enthusiasm behind unless it's actually being used to tell a story to kid.

Oy veigh.

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