Thursday, April 05, 2007

Only In Barre: Cross-Dressing Mayor Tripped Up By Thong Loophole

You know, sometimes even Snarky Boy can be shocked by the oddness of the so-called real news. In other words, sometimes you just can’t even make this shit up. And, let’s face it, Barre’s Mayor Thom Lauzon is the gift that keeps giving when it comes to the delightful combination of whack jobs and real news.

Yes, you remember Thommy-boy, don’t you? If not, here’s a quick refresher course: He’s the Barre mayor who is strangely wedded to the Sisyphean task of trying to take the Barre out of Barre. Worse, he’s got one hell of a Napoleon complex. Thommy has, for example, tried to close the town’s titty bar, forbid certain x-mas signs, called for the death penalty for drug dealers (hell, there goes his tax base), cross-dressed for cash and promoted a curfew for Barre’s youth. Oh yeah, and did I mention that he’s done all of this with the kind of “hey, look at me” obnoxious self-promotion that would make Donald Trump blush?

Hey, wait a second, I think I’m onto something there: Lauzon IS Barre’s Donald Trump, just without the comb-over (yet), the money, the talent or the location. As they say in the real estate market: location, location, location.

But Lauzon’s tacky like Trump. He owns tons of real estate like Trump. He thinks people care about his opinions like Trump. He’s got some over-the-top self-love going on like Trump. And, better yet, he owns one of George Steinbrenner’s horses like Trump. Yo Thommy, you’re on your way…

But before old Thommy-boy gets too full of himself, let’s get back to that location thing. Dude, you’re the mayor of Barre! And no matter how many superfluous “h’s” you add to your first name, you’re still just the mayor of Barre. So whenever you get that urge to go into that Trump role, why don’t you come down from your little horsy farm on the hill and stand in the parking lot of Barre’s real and true hotspot, Dunkin Donuts, and repeat these lines: This is my town. This is my town. This is my town. And then leave it – and us – alone. Please?

Lauzon, you see, is a master of saying off-the-wall things, getting the media to cover it, and then pretending he’s some kind of media darling. But someone over in Barre has got to whisper these few words into his tin ear: We’re laughing at you, Thommy, not with you.

Lauzon, for example, made the newspapers again this week with the news that he failed in his self-imposed Barre purification project to close the town’s second biggest hotspot, Planet Rock (aka: the titty bar). Lauzon, as you may know, has been bird dogging the titty bar for a long, long time, trying to pass and enforce town ordinances that legislate three-foot distances between dancers and patrons and also trying to regulate the employee to patron ratio. Yo Thommy, got something better to do?

I’m guessing that Thommy-boy is just frustrated that he hasn’t had the gumption to actually walk into Planet Rock. I’ll bet he got the idea for all these stupid ordinances while driving around and around the block trying to get a peep inside the window each time he went by, only being frustrated by his lack of seeing anything but the delight on the faces of the customers coming in and out. Curses!

When Thommy got all heavy handed with Planet Rock, its owner, Danny Garr, a true hero to the working man in Barre, fired back with lawsuits against Lauzon and every Barre City Councilor who voted in favor of the strip club crackdown. And, earlier this week, Garr won by agreeing to drop the lawsuits if the city agreed to hand him $7,500 in damages, stop enforcing their silly new rules, and allow him to start operating again. And the city’s attorneys advised that they accept Garr’s demands because the court cases would be hard to win – not to mention bizarre and embarrassing. Again, don’t they have something better to do?

Here’s the money quote from the Times Argus’ coverage of the settlement:

“Confronted with a case that would likely have turned on the definition of ‘nude’ and ‘lewd’ the city’s lawyers advised councilors to agree to the settlement and put the matter behind them.”

Emphasis on the word “behind,” please. As in: Ass. As in: The Mayor is an ass-face for taking this thing this far.

Garr and his lawyers were loaded for bare(ness) on this one, too. [I know, I know, that was bad but I’m getting bored.] They were prepared to turn the three-foot rule on its head, complete with plenty of head-turning testimony on what constitutes nudity, lewdness or – in the case of the mayor – stupidity. I’m just bummed that those of us who wanted to see this case will be denied what could have been a most memorable courtroom moment when Garr’s attorneys introduced the photo of Mayor Thom in the pink dress he recently wore in public. Anything for attention, huh Mayor?

But Garr’s lawyers, for example, were ready to argue successfully that the charges that one of the Planet Rock dancers “illegally” buried a man’s face in her chest were unfounded. Why? Well, because the “lewd” statute the Mayor and his uptight band of no-fun enforcers were citing would have required the dancer to be nude. And she wasn’t – she was wearing a thong! Gotta love a defense based on the thong loophole, huh? But, believe it or not, it’s this “thin” piece of evidence – along with city attorneys smart enough to sniff out a waste of time – that put an end to this episode of “Let’s Watch the Mayor Be Stupid – Barre Edition.”

Yo Thommy, enough with this nonsense. Go get yourself a lap dance, work this shit out of your system and – please – let Barre be Barre. I’ll be looking for you at Dunkin Donuts….