The new fence

Posted by Ellen


When Sarah Palin discovered that the house next door to her lakeside mansion in Wasilla had been rented to writer Joe McGinniss--an investigative journalist working on a book about Alaska that was unlikely to be sympathetic to her world view--she quickly put up a tall fence to block off his side windows.

"Wonder what kind of material he'll gather," mused Palin, "while overlooking Piper's bedroom, my little garden, and the family's swimming hole?"

The family's swimming hole? Um. That swimming hole is a 360-acre lake with a Best Western motel, at least four paved ramps to accommodate boat trailers, and umpteen float-plane docks. 

I can understand how she feels. I wouldn't want my next-door neighbor to be writing a book about how stupid I am. But if he were, I think I'd probably try to be nice. It wouldn't work, I'm sure, and he'd go right ahead and write his book pointing out all my stupidities. If I'd been nice to him, however, I could lick my wounds afterwards by telling myself: What a jerk. I went out of my way to be nice, and look what he did.

By accusing McGinniss essentially of stalking her, of spending his days waiting for a glimpse of Sarah in her bathing suit and standing at his window staring at her little girl in her bedroom, Palin is . . . well, it works for her.