Friday Filler – The Value of Dead Presidents in TSTO

I am writing this early again, because I am going to be on a plane, or will have just gotten off of a plane, or am sleeping off the final stages of my trip back East to see grandson Jake, with a little side trip to see Alissa, Sam and Riley.

For me, the 4th of July celebration this year was special, in that we didn’t celebrate it. It wasn’t a political statement, it was a choice of staying a couple of extra days and spending almost another $800 on airfare, or flying on the 4th, when everyone else is celebrating and airfares are cheap.

Flying is always a literal pain these days…less leg room, no free food (water and a cookie), and the knowledge that any connection could turn into a nightmare of cancelled flights can turn a short trip into a nightmare, (which has the vibe of current headlines for some people trying to become Americans).

But, it is a great chance to reflect…and take stock of the Presidents we have in TSTO…even if they are all dead, and just retreads from past events.

I’m not going to complain about the lack of a NEW Dead President. And although Gorge HW Bush was actually on the show, and is now in the same place that the rest of the Presidents in our game are (no longer with us, as my Aunt used to say), it is too soon. If the game is still around a year from now, perhaps. But, not this year. Too soon.

However, we do have SIX great representations of Presidents in our game.  All with varying values in real life, and all featured with tasks that represent who they were in real life. Kind of a mini-hysterical-history lesson, so to speak.

Going in chronological order…not in the order in which we got them in our games, makes more sense. It’s more accurate, and may explain something about our country. Or not.

George Washington was called the “Father of our Country.”  He was the most logical and best choice for the first President of our country, as he had spent the better part of the previous decade, going all over a lot of what was considered “our country,” even before it wasn’t our country. While Franklin and Jefferson were considered far more experienced statesmen, Washington was considered a true leader.  Ironically, one of the most important things he did, was to LEAVE the Presidency when he could have been President for life. He knew that being a lifetime ruler made the chances of a dictator or King (the guy we had just revolted against) more likely. There are so many myths about this guy (wooden teeth, the cherry tree bit). But, if you want to spend your  time seeing every monument or plaque about George Washington…you could spend your entire life doing so, and not see them all. I just went to “Washington Rock.”

It’s where Washington liked to go to check out British troop movement. Pretty cool. Nice place. I can see why he liked it. Washington. Great Man (and no…we aren’t going to go into the whole “he was a slaveholder bit). We’ll just say that he was late to that party.

Next up was Honest Abe Lincoln (not to be confused with Abe Simpson…who isn’t so much dishonest, as he is confused about his own reality).  What can you say about Abe Lincoln, who is known for doing so many great things, but mostly for freeing the slaves, and keeping the United States in one piece (when it wasn’t trying pull itself in half during the Civil War).  We can never know what more he could have done, had he not decided to catch a performance at Ford’s Theater. But it is safe to say, that there is no other President who faced more challenges, and brought us all through it, by gathering leaders of several parties, and forcing them to make decisions that were difficult, and not always popular.

One of my favorite books of all time is Doris Kearns Goodwin’s amazing “Team of Rivals,” which (according to WIKI) tells the story of Lincoln and some of the men who served with him in his cabinet from 1861 to 1865. Three of his Cabinet members had previously run against Lincoln in the 1860 election: Attorney General Edward Bates, Secretary of the Treasury Salmon P. Chase and Secretary of State William H. Seward. The book focuses on Lincoln’s mostly successful attempts to reconcile conflicting personalities and political factions on the path to abolition and victory in the American Civil War. Kind of makes today’s inoperable, squabble instead of solutions congress look silly. But I digress…

And, who can forget old “Rough-Rider” Teddy Roosevelt who was a real rabble-rouser, and the kind of guy who “just got things done?”  He had experience in loads of areas, including being a cowboy, a New York Police Commissioner, Assistant Secretary of the Navy, leader of the famous Rough Riders during the Spanish/Cuban war, Governor of New York, Vice President, and finally President. He was known as one of the key leaders of the “Progressive Era” working to break up huge monopolies, advocating for “pure food and drugs,”  establishing the National Parks system, and opening the Panama Canal. All this from a guy who as a boy was called “Sickly” and suffered from debilitating asthma.  Pretty impressive.

Next up was another Republican (yes, all of the previous on the list were Republicans of a different flavor), Dwight Eisenhower. Known primarily as the “leader of the Western Forces” in WWII, Ike (his nickname was Ike), is perhaps best remembered for being an avid golfer (who didn’t golf even 1/4 as much as our current President) and someone who warned us about the dangers of letting our country be shaped and  ruined by “The Industrial Military Complex.”  Basically, he was a soldier who disliked war…and could see the dangers of basing an economy on making machines and tools of war, for the fear that we had to use them.

This is heady stuff…and today,  people seem more inclined to argue about who played the most golf while in office.  This is a pretty funny site, dedicated to breaking down Presidential Golf.  For the record, Obama played a healthy 333 rounds over his 8 years as President, which is far less than Eisenhower who played more than 800 rounds in two terms. But Woodrow Wilson is WAY out front on the Golf Leaderboard (at least for now) with 1,200 rounds over his two terms (average of 150 rounds a year).  So…while it seems that Trump plays a ton of golf, as of today, he has played just under 200 rounds…in two years. So, way more than any other modern President, but way fewer than Wilson.

Nixon.  What can you say about Nixon  that hasn’t been said?  He opened up trade with China…and well…did a whole lot of other stuff that has made him one of the most disliked Presidents in history.  He got us out of Vietnam, after illegally keeping us in it…and then got himself into trouble while getting re-elected (which is why we have the Watergate in our games). He wasn’t a golfer…but he was an avid bowler.  People thought he was the first to have a bowling ally in the White House. He wasn’t. That was Truman. But, he was said to be a great bowler.  The good thing about bowling, is that it is very hard to cheat at bowling. You count how many pins you knock down…and everyone can see the results. Of all of the Republicans listed above, Nixon was part of the “new kind” which isn’t very much like the “old kind,” and a LOT different than the newest brand. But, I digress…

Finally, we come to Reagan. He was an actor for most, if not all of his life. He delivered lines well, and had a great speech writing team to help.  He has a checkered administration which held the 2nd worst record for the most indictments in the modern era (Nixon had 76, Reagan 26), but doesn’t come close to the worst…which goes to guys like Buchanan, Harding, Andrew Jackson, and Grant, during the “good old days” of “Government as a form of personal financial reward).  I have never been a fan…as his deregulation policies have haunted the country since. But, I digress.

The most important part of all of this, is that if we are to ever get anything done, we need to be able to look back and realize that those who did the most, did so by working with people with whom they may not always agree.

And to that point…
Three years ago, a “peace treaty” was struck between two warring TSTO factions.  While it is true that she and I do not always agree, and certainly not on politics, we DO agree on the value of family, friends, and learning to appreciate what is important in life.  I treasure every minute since that day. So much has happened…including watching Riley-roo go from being an infant at our first meeting (one of the primary reasons that Alissa and I bonded again) and who she is today…. someone who gets “Mr. Pat’s” weird humor.

After lunch…she got ice cream with sprinkles…or Jimmies if you prefer.  And in fact, Alissa and Andrew her husband don’t agree on this finer point.  Alissa calls them Sprinkles….Andrew calls them Jimmies.  So, in the interest of “working across the aisle” I told Riley that her ice cream toppings were almost ALL Sprinkles…but there are a handful of rogue”James” that might pop out of her mouth and onto her shirt!  She spent the rest of the meal, having me check her mouth for James.  Hilarious!

Riley 2016….cute as a button!

Riley- 2019– Chasing James! And Soooo Cute!

Differing Political Views?  Pfffftttt…. Who cares when there are James  to hunt?

Time to CELEBRATE the future generation…


During our visit, we checked a ton off of the “All Things American” list…including a bunch of swimming, little league baseball, and going to a minor league baseball game (the Somerset Patriots)…





And of course…the NEW 4th of July Tradition...Chasing Grandpa with the Light Saber that his big brother got at the Patriots game! (apparently nothings says American Baseball like a light saber with the team logo on it).

And finally…. our last breakfast with Jake before getting on the plane.  This little guy re-energized his old grandpa with his ever-present smile, his open and friendly personality (he always gathers a crowd where ever he goes), and his big hugs.

The Tee Shirt Says, “I try to be good, but I take after grandpa” Perfect.

And finally…Jake may also end up golfing…and with this kind of determination, he too could end up as a President in TSTO someday….right?

The lessons we can learn from a bunch of Dead Presidents…
1. You can never play too much golf.
2. Life Currency is taken…not earned.
3. The Good, The Bad, and the Marginal may all end up as TSTO characters.
4. Be nice to one another…you never know when you may need to work together. 

56 responses to “Friday Filler – The Value of Dead Presidents in TSTO

  1. So many cute babies! My youngest and eighth baby is three and I’m already missing that baby stage. Makes me want another!

    I look forward to collecting all the presidents in my Springfield.

  2. There is a movie called Dead Presidents .

    🐒🌎 . Live well and prosper . See ya bye . 👽

  3. Great article Pat! Gotta say Teddy is my favorite from the bunch so far, I love the National Parks. I know Bill Clinton has had multiple humorous appearances on the show, but uh… not sure how people would feel about having him in the game. And as far as politics, I can’t say I’m not surprised at how level headed you are! President Washington gave America a lot of warnings in his farewell address, which we seem to have forgotten about… It’s pretty obvious a lot of us are divided and unwilling to listen to others, something I hope we can fix (with a leader who promotes understanding). It’s not only Repubs, and it’s not only Dems… it’s a problem everywhere in our government right now.

    • Agreed…100%. It’s no longer about working together to find solutions, it is making sure the “other side” loses…no matter what the cost.

  4. Great recap and mini history lesson to boot! Always good to have a refresher. And agreed that it’s too soon for Bush, Sr! Hopefully next year will be the right time.

  5. Very disappointed no President this year. If I had to pick one it would have been rhecrecently deceased George Bush. I believe we have his house in this game. He was on one of the most memorable episodes also.

  6. For your consideration, Reagan did this country a great service by deregulating the oil industry. It ended the gasoline lines at service stations. It would have been better if the Democrats didn’t insist on “windfall” oil tax. Also you are able to fly cross country at a cheap price because of his deregulation of the air line industry. We also benefited from the breakup of Bell in 1982 under his watch.

    • And…he deregulated broadcasting (not good) and embroiled is in the Iran Contra mess… so, sorry.

      • So what do you have against deregulating the broadcast industry?

        • By blowing up the fairness doctrine, it made it possible for Limbaugh…then FOX and CNN…and 24 hours of polarizing, made up, half-truths from both sides. Then….under Clinton, ownership was deregulated. All…bad.

          • I guess you dislike twitter and Facebook also. It is better than the monopoly of the Associated Press: NYT/WP/CBS/NBC/ABC/PBS all liberal biased.

            • Can we not turn this into a political mess? Email each other if you want to debate.

              • Tracy-1ltwoody920

                What if we chose not to debate,
                But rather to proclomate !?

                Personally, I’m currently undecided as to whether our current President is:
                The Best at being the Worst
                The Worst at being the Best
                The Best at being the Best
                The Worst at being the Worst
                Simply somewhere mixt amongst these categories

                I dunno.
                Literally, I don’t know.

              • I’m relatively certain. Almost any of the above indicate the need for a change.

              • That’s for history to tell. Gauging presidents while they’re in office is notoriously fraught with flaws. Harding was one of the most beloved presidents during his presidency. He is consistently rated among the worst. Lincoln was hated as a tyrant, even by many in the North. He is consistently rated among the best.

            • Charles…as someone who has been in media almost my entire life, the difference between any of the 24 hour news channels, is that they need to fill up 24 hours with something. They ceased being NEWS sources years ago…and are now simply opinion shows, both Left and Right. To the original point, that is what Reagan unleashed. And no…it wasn’t a good thing.

            • Uhm….Facebook and Twitter aren’t even close to being actual News Sources. They SHOULD be regulated, like other media, by the FCC. But, instead, they are easily manipulated by bots, foreign entities, and any other sort of nefarious players. They are good for cat pics, and baby pics, but little else as it pertains to actual news.

              • #CancelSM

              • True, but you seem to think the “News” outlets before deregulation were actually true and honest. It was filled with distortions and omissions. If they favored a side they would show close up of “protests” to not show how few people showed up. If there were against it a position they would either ignore it or find people with the most extreme positions to make a side look foolish.

              • K guys this has gone on enough. This is a Simpsons site not political site. Enough.

              • Agreed…Clearly Charles and I will never agree, on much of anything. We can take it offline if we care to.

              • Grazie

          • And the end of the fairness doctrine was ultimately codified under the Obama administration. Ah, swamp.

    • Airlines were deregulated by Carter, not Reagan. It was the Airline Deregulation Act of 1978 that did it.

  7. Well written as usual. Still manage to state political opinions while not saying the words, but I digress. The decision makers would never create an Obama character….they just would not. It’s way easier to create a spoof of a person with different ideals or Rush Limbaugh, for example, and easier to write comedy about people they see as funny in real life. I can imagine a game where people like Rachel Maddow, or Hilary Clinton could subtly poked at, made fun of,….but for some reason these characters would never created. Have a nice weekend everyone! Anyone out there secretly hoping the U.S. Women lose the World Cup???……oh you know who you are.

    • Trust me…I would welcome some “poking” at many if not all of those. It should be the “Simpsons way.” But, good luck with that…if you look at the political makeup of the writers. I’m not personally a fan of Hillary or Maddow.

      And as far as the women? I’d mostly like to see them paid the same as the men.

  8. Jake and Riley are really wonderful 😍

  9. Here’s to Dead Presidents …. and the 6.4 followed by the 7.1 earthquakes that woke everyone up to the fact Mother Nature’s pissed (yeah estabrook having the ground at your feet roll like it was ocean water)

    💜 Seeing pictures of happy children and happy adults (I hope everyone had a nice 4th of July), let’s hope there’s no more seismic activity for me 😮

  10. Continuing with whats important in life…..
    16 yrs ago this morning i acquired the title of mom for the 1st time. My baby girl is sweet sixteen!!!❤ Where does the time go…seriously?

    • Happy momaversary!

    • It is amazing……. time… had my 17 year-Old grandson and my 14 month old grandson in my grasp within a week of one another, on opposite coasts! As a father of five daughters…16 is a special year.

    • Happy birthday to her! My oldest girl is 16 also. . .and came home a little late tonight. . .Sweet 16 but maybe a little bitter sweet as I worry more now.
      You have two darling cuties, Alissa! Enjoy them while they are young!

  11. I relate Politicians to Baseball Umpires. They are both horrible jobs… No matter call/decision you make you are wrong. Approx 50 people like you and 50 people hate you as a result.

    However umpires can’t introduce the legalization of Marijuana to guarantee their job next year..

  12. Tracy-1ltwoody920

    I’m probably late to the game,
    But it just struck me….
    ALL the President Characters are Republican?


    • Well…technically, Washington was a hybrid….from the Democratic Republican Party…which later became the Republican Party. “Overall, his political views were more overarching in their scope, rather than specific. Washington stood for national freedom, individual liberties, and a strong central government that would serve to protect the freedoms and liberties of its citizens. Also, he believed in complete separation of church and the state.”

    • Tracy-1ltwoody920

      They all have a Republican Headquarters to go to 😉

  13. Alissa’s correct, they’re called sprinkles, ’cause you “sprinkle” them on the top of your ice cream!
    I rest my case.
    I often wonder what ol’ George or Teddy would make of the state of today’s D.C. I can’t imagine they’d be pleased.

  14. Gracias como siempre por los post, la información y la dedicación!
    Preciosa familia, saludos desde Málaga, España 🙂

  15. Anal retentive that I am……..
    And stirrer of the pot….(that I am)
    George Washington was NOT the first President, he was, as I recall
    Numero Eight
    Number one was John Hanson, who served one year as:
    President of the United States (in Congress Assembled)
    And, among other things, he created the Great Seal, that is still used,
    And, established the Treasry Department.

    • Not the same. Constitution had to come, before the actual definition of President of the United States could exist. He was President of the Congress…a governing body…not the overarching President of the country. It is comparable to President of the Senate. But, it isn’t even a tomato potato distinction.

  16. In a previous thread, I suggested Thomas Jefferson should be in the game because his statue played a role in “Mr. Lisa Goes to Washington”. A little further digging I found he appeared as a non-statue in “Bart Gets an F”.
    I would also suggest Gerald Ford – he had a hilarious appearance at the end of “Two Bad Neighbors”, and it should not be too soon for him to appear in game.

  17. Keith1Roon991

    Milk and cookies not water yuk, as a Scotsman I think more American than British, with an Irish ancestry, I think I know more presidents than UK prime minister’s, I also think I have GGG fighting in the civil war or uncles, so an independence for the country I love and live it would be the ultimate goal with in my life time. Ghw bush rip, freedom !!! 😀

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