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Whatever Happened to Bill O’Reilly’s Loofah?

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Thanksgiving brought us the one-month anniversary of Bill O’Reilly’s disclosure on his show that “to protect my family” he had settled with Ms Andrea Mackris and her lawyer Benedict Morelli, thus cutting off what millions of O’Reilly haters had hoped would be a protracted season of public humiliation for Fox’s apex bully. The settlement established that all parties agreed there had been no wrong doing and as an earnest of good faith O’Reilly (if you believe the New York Daily News) had paid anywhere from $2 million to $10 million to Mackris, nice money if true, though not as nice as the $60 million Morelli had originally suggested to O’Reilly as a satisfactorily round figure.

But there remains the mystery of the transmuted loofa, about which I had been hoping for some pleasing courtroom exchanges. Let’s pick up the thread in the court document lodged in Nassau county, N.J., by Morelli on behalf of Mackris.

11.06 pm September 1, 2004.

O’Reilly calls Mackris, a 33 year-old innocent from the Show Me state, working as a producer on the O’Reilly show. She, poor lamb, says she thought it was about business and told him she’d call him right back. At this point, we surmise Ms Mackris may have activated a recording device and with the tape rolling, dialed the boss, who promptly gets down to business, launching into what the complaint harshly stigmatized as “a lewd and lascivious, unsolicited and disturbing sexually graphic talk”, about how he imagines he would handle business if they were in the West Indies.

First he’d get two wines into Ms Mackris, “maybe intravenously”. Then, “You would basically be in the shower and then I would come in and I’d join you and you would have your back to me and I would take the little loofa thing”

A loofa! This is no Motel 6, though it’s not the Ritz either, where loofas would scarcely be “little”, though admittedly size doesn’t come up in the description of loofa offered by the The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language: Fourth Edition. 2000.

SYLLABICATION:
loo·fa

VARIANT FORMS:
or loo·fah also luf·fa NOUN:
1. Any of several Old World tropical vines of the genus Luffa, having cylindrical fruit with a fibrous, spongelike interior.

2. The dried, fibrous part of the loofa fruit, used as a washing sponge or as a filter. Also called dishcloth gourd, vegetable sponge.

ETYMOLOGY:

Arabic loof singulative form of loofa.

And what is O’Reilly, so strong, so masterful, planning to do with this thing of Arab origin? “I would take the little loofa thing and kinda’ soap your back and rub it all over you, get you to relax, hot wate rand um You know, you’d feel the tension drain out of you and um you still would be with your back to me then I would kinda’ put my arms–it’s one of those mitts, those loofa mitts you know, so I got my hands in it and I would put it around front, kinda’ rub your tummy with it and then with my other hand I would start to massage your boobs, get your nipples really hard ‘cuz I like that and you have really spectacular boobs.”

At this point, in the document filed in the court house in Nassau County, which would indeed appear to be a transcript right down to the ums, there’s an ellipse.

“So anyway I’d be rubbing your big boobs and getting your nipples really hard, kinda kissing your neck from behind and then the other hand with the felafel thing”

NOUN:
1. Ground spiced chickpeas shaped into balls and fried.

2. A sandwich filled with such a mixture.

What happened to the loofa?

Maybe Abe Foxman called him on the other line to warn about “going Arab on us”.

And what is O’Reilly planning to do with the falafel?

“I would take the other hand with the falafel thing (sic)and I’d put it on your pussy, but you’d have to do it really light, just kind of a tease business.”

According to the courtroom document available for inspection on Smoking Gun, the quality of the conversation goes down hill from there on in. It may be that O’Reilly’s tour of Arab commodities was proleptic, as he began to shift gears through the vowel sounds. For an interesting discussion of the processes involved I recommend Sebastiano Timpanaro’s philological investigation, published in translation years ago by Verso, entitled The Freudian Slip. From loofa to felafel to Well, let Ms Mackris and her lawyer tell it their way. O’Reilly “suggested he would perform oral sex” on Ms Mackris and she would “perform fellatio on his ‘big cock’ but not complete the act”, maybe to conserve his energies for further deployment of the little loofa or the felafel, though the lifespan of a felafel in a shower is surely limited in duration. After the exciting fa-fel-fell monologue and what to Ms Mackris’ “repulsed” ear sounded like the hum of a vibrator and acoustic intimations of satisfactory climax O’Reilly launched into a discussion concerning how good he was during a recent appearance on “The Today Show”.

Mind you, though O’Reilly may have thought he was on safe political ground with presumptively Israeli falafel, the word ­ and indeed the snack ­ is also of Arab origin.

Thank you Ms Mackris. It must have been just horrible for you, but it was in a good cause. You gave us a bright moment in a dark year.

This article originally appeared in the November 2004 edition of CounterPunch

Alexander Cockburn’s Guillotined! and A Colossal Wreck are available from CounterPunch.

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