Unit of delay, ‘Where’s Marilyn?’ family game spawned by Musgrave antics

This started out as the latest installment of the Marilyn Musgrave Concession Watch — we’re approaching 24 days since the Colorado Republican lost her 4th District congressional seat to Democrat Betsy Markey, and she still hasn’t conceded the race or even thanked her supporters — but at some point that just feels like piling on. So we’ll turn to Denver Post columnist Ed Quillen and the Greeley Tribune’s Mike Peters, who did some piling on of their own this past weekend.

Quillen asks in his Sunday column whether a passel of Colorado politicians have so distinguished themselves that they deserve scientific units of measurement bearing their names. OK, the conceit is a stretch, but it lets the Salida-based wag unload on a half-dozen pols for their particular idiosyncrasies, including Musgrave’s difficulty picking up a phone.

The musgrave (for Marilyn Musgrave, representative of the 4th Congressional District, 2003-09) is an indefinite period of time expressing the interval between the time one is expected to do something and when it actually gets done, as with her concession, expected on Nov. 4 or 5, and still not delivered a fortnight later. Usage: “I called to see when I was going to get paid for the last job, and the SOB told me that with this economy, it might be a couple of musgraves before I see my money.”

Quillen cleaves down the middle with his ridicule, reserving equal time for Democrats Ken Salazar, Jared Polis and Bill Ritter, alongside additional Republican targets Doug Lamborn and Dick Wadhams.

It might not be such a stretch to turn a Colorado politician’s name into a word, Quillen observes, noting that Doug Bruce has already lent his name to the “debrucing” activity governments must take to shed tax-and-spend limits imposed by Bruce’s TABOR amendment. Still, the columnist avers, “bruce” could “someday become a unit of kicking force,” spreading the vocabulary beyond state boundaries.

The Greeley Tribune’s “Gnarly Trombone” column weighed in on the Musgrave front Saturday with a proposed “New, Special, Educational, First-Time-Ever, Family Fun-Filled” game called “Where’s Marilyn?” Noting that the congresswoman’s whereabouts were well known until a few weeks ago, staff writer Mike Peters outlines the rules:

So, here’s the way the game is played:

• Everyone in the game gets their own Marilyn Doll.

• Everyone hides their doll.

• Everyone looks for her.

• The first person to find her wins the prize: They get to sit in Marilyn’s chair in the U.S. Congress, since no one seems to be using it right now.

Peters also asks readers who actually do locate Marilyn to give a call, because she hasn’t been returning the newspaper’s calls either.

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Ernest Luning

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