F/M/K: Hugh Laurie, Rahm Emanuel, Anthony Bourdain

by Julie Klausner and Natasha Vargas-Cooper

Natasha: Jewlz, this is a potent list of Silvery Fox Men you’ve thrown down.

I think I speak for all women and the 110th Congress when I ask: does it count as fisting if the dude only has four fingers? Even outside the parameters of this salt-n-pepper trifecta, Rahm ranks in single digits of my FUCK BUCKET LIST of all time. On looks alone he’s a hot piece of bone: hooded eyes, sharp cheek bones, and hands-on-hips Israeli paratrooper posture. It all just makes a girl like me (i.e. one who digs men of The Tribe) tingly. Though my unyielding sexual attraction to Rahm mainly stems from his persona: a totally Machiavellian, calculating, corrupt, real politik power broker. He’s a cad — villainous, even! He’s in part responsible for one of the most abhorrent strands of the modern political era: The Clinton Democrat. But, of course, simultaneous feelings of loathing and desire can only be resolved through sexual conquest. And what’s not to love about a guy who not only maintains an enemies list but sends them dead fish wrapped in newspaper? He’s like Robert Duvall in both Godfather and Apocalypse Now! One part brainy strategist and another part take-no-prisoners cowboy, and in my case my lady parts are the Vietnamese jungle and I want Rahm’s napalm ALL OVER IT WITH WAGNER BOOMING FROM ABOVE!

Naturally, Hugh Laurie is husband material because he’s British and therefore everything that comes out of his mouth is entrancing! This one time, I had an open-mouth party with a guy from Manchester and whenever he spoke it felt like I had entered a magical storyland of yore populated by Charles Dickens’ orphans, corgis, ivory merchants, and bespectacled wizards, but after noticing the assortment of plastic LIVESTRONG-style bracelets on his wrists I grew suspicious. When we were doing the post-fluid-swap chat I was like, “so who’s your favorite author?” and in the Queen’s English he was all, “John Grisham and I love Dan Brown.” That’s usually a DO NOT PASS GO stateside, but with his Limey style he still totally got to touch my boobs. Hugh Laurie has that, AND a really good novel he penned, AND dry wit, AND master thespian chops. I only wish I had an extra pair of boobs for him to matrimonially fondle.

This is a no-brainer: kill Bourdain WITH EASE. I’ve never been won over by this guy. I get the whole no-bullshit, I-used-to-shoot-smack-so-don’t-get-cute-with-me-about-your-flavor-profile thing, but he grinds my nerves. I find him to be a little too self-satisfied, and his willingness to cash in on his rebel thing is distasteful. He also wears that miserable little hoop earring. That tiny totem of faux-outdated rebellion puts him directly into the DEATH-CANO (volcano of kill).

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Julie: Natasha, my Chola-Jewess bizarro self, I must tip my frizzy side-bangs to your choices here, and offer only my contrast to the power of why.

Rahm is truly the bone wolf of Silver Jews, isn’t he? (No David Berman homo.) He speaks to the agricultural kibbutz capability, the machine gun swagger, and the nationalist fury that Hebrews would have more firmly and historically embedded into our DNA had we had the benefit of our own country for longer than approximately the same amount of time that’s passed since psychoanalysis was invented. Incidentally, which modernist development is more controversial? Psychology or Zionism? It is a question that, along with hubris and everything bagels, is the only thing keeping Phillip Roth alive today.

But Rahm is an ACTION JEW, which is compelling and exotic and thoroughly, essentially, beautifully boneable. Do I need to mention power? Do I need to talk about it? I can, and I will and I have, but it’s not to remind men how Machiavellian THEY think WE are (bitches be wanting men who can all “carry themselves” and “form a sentence” and “provide for their families by demonstrating expertise in their line of work” and “cause you inhale sharply just by entering a room in a suit and, at the same time, have something important to do IN THAT ROOM”), because how dare we for not just wanting a squeezable pair of tushy buns atop two muscle stems, or whatever it is guys like about Eva Longoria.

I also wish to add that the reason Rahm has a missing finger part is because he lost it in a roast beef slicer when he worked at Arby’s in high school. Oh, and his middle name is Israel. Therefore! Blessed art thou, Lord our God, King of the Universe — may Rahm and I boning cause Yasser Arafat to not only roll in his grave, but also to find Yitzhak Rabin in ghost form and shake his goddamn hand again, in a spiritual reenactment of Rahm’s accomplishment when both were on Earth and Rahmbo got Clinton on Team Florida.

Now, Hugh Laurie I would marry without ever meeting in person. I would see a photo, I would hear him speak, and The End. That man makes a House a home. Get it? Look, I don’t care that he’s Dr. House. He could be the half-man on Two and a Half Men and I’d still want his DNA inside my babies. Firstly, he is so beautiful, it makes me want to puke violently. His vertical cheek lines are like face cleavage; upward-facing arrows that point to those Australian Shepherd-blue eyes.

And certainly, we have to speak to the powerful semiotics of Laurie’s Britishness, because it runs as thick as fryer smoke in a tiny chip shop kitchen. This guy. This bloke! He suffers from severe clinical depression, like all Brits, but A) admits to it and B) claims the writings of P.G. Wodehouse saved his life? Are you serious? Could that be Britisher? How? How could it be Britisher? If you were drinking tea when you read it? Fuck you, it couldn’t be more English. I also wish to point out that Laurie is, along with Minnie Driver, the only Brit I think who can really, truly, masterfully and convincingly, pull off an American accent with no seams. And when you look at his sketch comedy pedigree, one should blanch like an asparagus spear. Stephen Fry was his comedy partner. Who is your comedy partner? The fat guy you met in Sketch 101? The one who knows Final Cut?

American Gents: British guys are our Asian ladies. There is excellence there, and grace and brains, and for God’s sake Hugh Laurie rowed in college (Zuckerberg, can you hear me?) and for that he was called an OARSMAN. An oarsman!

Finally, obviously, always, kill Bourdain. Bequeath the life insurance policy to his first wife Nancy, the high school sweetheart who stayed by his side during his memoir-fodder years, when he was slinging his dick around in hot kitchens, and enjoying the company of heroin and the goddamn New York Dolls, we get it, you love that music, Dad.

Kill him. Make a joke about it the way he jokes about killing the “cute bunnies” he cooks and eats, not because it’s not okay to kill rabbits for food, but because pointing out how mean it is, is SO UNFUNNY. God save me from those who, when learning how their “outrageous gallows humor” offends those more sensitive or conservative, pump fists into the air like Snooki. Bill Hicks is dead, okay? He’s never going to discover you, your world views will never collide over an espresso and an unfiltered Camel, and your band is never going to open for him. Get a new cause. Are American tourists fat and dumb and lazy, and do we clog up European sidewalks when we go visit? Maybe! Is it high on my list of pet peeves right now? Nope!

Fine. He is hot. Like, “yowza” how-does-he-still-look-so-good hot, I don’t even mind that dumb tattoo hot, the earring is Harrison Ford-y hot. But! The persona! The persona is deafening! So canned, so retro Bogosian, so baby boomer autopilot, scored with ’90s bands. Bacon! Bukowski! Bourbon! Blues Explosion! I wrote more about the “Bourdainians” here, and the “Cool Dad” cliché, and John Larroquette’s Twitter (he only follow Tom Waits). But YES, Tony is hot. He’s super hot. It’s why I think about him so much. And I’d eat his food. But in the words of Legs McNeill, kind of — “Please Kill Tony.”

Previously: F/M/K: James Gandolfini, Steve Buscemi, Michael Imperioli.

Julie Klausner wrote a BOOK and Natasha Vargas-Cooper wrote a BOOK, and both of them are experts in concurrently frightening and arousing weak men with discourse and panache. Sophie’s F/M/K is a regular column on The Hairpin!