Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Side Pieceology 101: Do Not Overplay Your Position

OK folks, we're all adults here.  So chances are at some point in our many years on this planet we have all encountered what hip-hop parlance commonly refers to as the "side piece."  Perhaps you have been the side piece for a person who was in a steady relationship.  Perhaps you were the one who actually had the side piece.  Hey, The Janitor is not here to judge.  "Everybody plays the fools, sometimes; there's no exceptions to the rule"...or so they say.   If we go all the way back to the beginning of human history, we will invariably recover the first skeletal remains of King So-and-So's side piece(s).  Resolved: as long as there have been marriages, there have been side pieces.  OK.   Now that we've gotten that bit of inconvenient truth out of the way (tune in next week as we reveal that there's no Easter Bunny), it is notable to observe that if you insist on being or having a side piece (not advisable, by the way) then there are rules to abide by.  A universal Side Piece Manual, if you will.  "A step-by-step booklet for you to get your game on track, not your wig pushed back" to quote the late B.I.G.  Again, The Urban Politico does not condone or endorse the actions of anybody who ventures down the path of side-piecedom, but if you do then you should know that the fundamental rule is simple: don't get caught.  From this single fundamental principal all other side piece rules are derived.  After all, if you're going to knowingly become a man or woman's side piece, then as a threshold matter you concede that a relationship already exists that you are not a part of.  There's a reason that you (figuratively speaking here, of course) are not the "main" piece:  your lover chose to settle down with somebody else.  Some side pieces (rookies no doubt) sometimes have a hard time accepting this fact and, from time to time, fall victim to the urge to engage in conduct unbecoming of a side piece.  This activity is called "Overplaying Your Position."  And with that lead-in, please welcome to the show 4-Star General and former Director of the CIA, David Petraeus, his biographer Paula Broadwell, and some random chick named Jill Kelley.

Meet General David Petraeus:
"Hi, I'm David.  I like deep sea diving, going to the movies,
cheating on my wife, and adding side pieces to my team."
Meet Paula Broadwell:
"Hi, I'm Paula.  I like writing, taking long walks on the beach,
cheating on my husband, and overplaying my position
as somebody else's side piece."
Meet Jill Kelley:
"Hi, I'm Jill.  Not sure why I'm here, exactly.
  By the way, I have a lot of friends in the FBI
and they do not care about your civil liberties AT ALL
so mess with me if you dare."
Let me just say up front that the media does not have all of the facts of this debacle yet but from what we do know there have been major violations of the Side Piece Manual that go something like this:

David Petraeus is married to Holly Knowlton, daughter of Army General William A Knowlton who directed West Point Academy; David and Holly have a son, Stephen, and a daughter, Anne.  Paula Broadwell is married to a radiologist named Scott; they have 2 sons and live in a nice house in Charlotte, North Carolina. Jill Kelley is also married.  Jill's husband is a doctor named Scott and together they have 3 daughters and reside in Tampa Bay, Florida.  [EDITOR'S NOTE: I highlight the families to note that by engaging in this risky activity, these 3 individuals have not only affected their own lives but also the lives of their respective spouses and a total of 7 children.]


In a nutshell, General Petraeus and Paula Broadwell decide to become side pieces to each other while Paula was writing the General's biography.  OK.  To each their own.  So be it.  These are not the first two people in the history of the planet to have an affair. Normally, the story would end here, but due to a serious violation of the Side Piece Manual, now the whole world is talking about this mess.  What was the violation, you ask?  Apparently, the General, Paula and Jill all attended the same dinner event.  At this dinner, Jill was allegedly seated next to and, according to Paula, playing footsie with the General (Jill denies that this ever happened).

If Paula had consulted her Side Piece Manual, she would have clearly seen on page 1 that the rules of being a side piece strictly prohibit any possessive behavior towards the General.  This is especially true when the side piece in question (Paula) is already married with her own husband and 2 kids back home.   She has absolutely ZERO standing to regulate the additional extra-marital affairs of a man that she, herself, is in an extra-marital affair with.  These are the rules.

But Paula didn't read that chapter.

Paula begins to send harassing e-mails to Jill from an anonymous e-mail account.  Little does Paula know, however, Jill has friends in high places.  Jill then drops a dime to the FBI and the FBI opens up an investigation on the anonymous e-mails.  They quickly trace these e-mails (sent via gmail) back to Paula Broadwell.  However, the FBI doesn't stop there.  They keep digging through Paula's personal e-mail and come across a series of e-mails between Paula and the General.  But the FBI doesn't stop there (4th Amendment?  What 4th Amendment?).  They then hack into the General's personal e-mail account to confirm whether the General may have sent e-mails to Paula which breach national security.

This invariably led to a media frenzy as reporters tried to uncover how far the affair went, what privacy rights were violated by the FBI, whether the FBI violated investigative protocols, who among the justice department knew what and when, etc.  Joe Scarborough on Morning Joe summarized these concerns this morning:

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And to think that all of this could have been avoided if Paula Broadwell, a self-identified side piece, simply would have fought the urge to Overplay Her Position!

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