Topic: "Better Man" (3)
Frodo has always had a special affection, if not admiration, for the truly solid citizen. The pulling guard who makes one-fiftieth of what the running back makes, but without whom there would be no running back. The police officer who works his shift, mows his lawn, and still finds time to volunteer for those special days at school telling classmates of his son what he does for a living. The Social Security Representative who listens, patiently, to person-after-person complain, yet handles each person as if they were truly a "client." There is a special place in Heaven for those who just do their job; Frodo laments that the need for money has changed the motivations of far too many.
David Gergen, to Frodo, is such a person. He has worked for four different Presidential Administrations; different Political Parties, with very different policies. Seemingly, he is the guy who helps put together the "message," particularly when nobody else seems capable of explaining just what the hell is happening. The rest of the time he appears on television as a paid observer of government behavior. Frodo, while punching the remote, always stops when David Gergen is talking, no matter what channel or subject. He is thoughtful, sensitive, honest, and has earned Frodo's trust.
He looks like the guy who works behind the meat counter at Publix. He talks like the guy who explains the difference between an annuity and a defined benefits plan. He dresses like the guy who passes the collection plate down the aisle every Sunday. He listens like the college professor who takes your response and presents another thoughtful question. He is the next-door neighbor who returns your garbage can back down the driveway once the truck has passed.
He is not Snoopy Dog Doo (Frodo's special moniker for Brother Broaddus). He is not "Pacman" Jones. He is not Karl Rove. He is not Paul Wolfowitz.
He has never humiliated someone else in public. He does not shout down a differing opinion while participating in a media forum. He just acts and sounds like a guy Frodo would like to know.
Occasionally now, Frodo will stop and just talk for a minute about those people we seem to never really talk about. Johnny Carson used to bring out actors whom we had all seen time-and-again, like Dub Taylor, but whose name was lost as the credits rolled swiftly toward the lighting of the theater. Frodo is proud that he first has picked David Gergen, and he hopes that someday, when Mr. Gergen "googles" his own name, that he takes note of Frodo's heart-felt admiration, nay respect, for David Gergen, American.