Friday, July 30, 2010

Car bombs, hospitals, and muckrakers

I've been spending my days and my nights at the hospital with my grandmother. She's doing much, much better now. She has good days, and she's had some bad days. A few days ago we had a very bad day on my watch. I had requested they give her a mild painkiller because she was showing several signs of discomfort. I was assured it was very mild and would have few side effects, not even drowsiness. I've taken the same drug, and had no reactions as well. She took it and settled down nicely. Later on she really started to scare me with some very disoriented remarks. She told me to ask my deceased grandfather a question (really upsetting me), told me to put a blanket on the phone, and some other scary non-sequitors. She was falling asleep every few minutes, and waking right back up. I got very worried and asked for help. Turns out the nurses were wrong and the drug can make a person quite loopy and does cause marked drowsiness. So all my fears were taken care of. Once the drug wore off she went back to being herself- sick, but herself. Nonetheless, I've still been a little more aware of her lucidity.
Which brings me to Thursday evening. We're watching her favorite news program, a commercial comes on, and she says to me, "That's the man that put a bomb in your cousin's car."
The crazy flag instantly went up, and I became worried again that she was disoriented. I checked her out, watched her vitals, and asked a few questions, including, "Which cousin?"
"Jack Anderson."
Oh, well, that changes things. Jack Anderson is actually my grandmother's cousin's husband. He's also deceased. But before he passed away he was a notorious shock journalist, or as he called himself, a "muckraker." He had more than a few enemies. For instance, President Nixon tried to have him assassinated. No, seriously. True story.
So suddenly a bomb in his car doesn't seem so implausible, does it?
She fell asleep shortly thereafter, and I had to wait for the commercial to air again to figure out who the man she's accusing was.
Oh, G. Gordon Liddy, the currently well-respected political radio show host, and Watergate felon. Yeah, he hated Jack big time. Again, a bomb doesn't seem so implausible.
I did some quick research and never could find a car bomb story online. However, I did find several sources saying that Liddy once plotted (because Nixon ordered it so) to kill Jack by putting poison on his steering wheel. However, the plan was foiled before it was attempted because Liddy was arrested at the Watergate.
Pretty crazy, eh? Well, hold on, it gets even stranger. There are some out there that believe that Nixon also ordered some of his henchmen to kill the now Vice President Biden. Do you know how VP Biden's wife and children were killed in a car accident right after he got elected to the Senate in 1971? Some people suspect that the henchmen may have put poison on the steering wheel. (VP Biden does not give credit to the theory.) Why? Because he was an anti-Vietnam war incoming freshman. And Nixon had no problems with criminal resolutions to his problems.

Oh the things you can learn when you have to quickly google to find out if your grandmother is crazy. Now I just need to ask her more about this car bomb.


  1. Wow, who needs tv or the movies when you've got family history?? Genealogy always turns up the best stories!

  2. I'm old enough to remember Jack Anderson's stories. He was an absolutely fascinating journalist to me as a teenager. Unfortunately, all I had to do was mention his name and my Dad went ballistic! So, obviously, as a teenager, I had to work Jack Anderson into as many conversations as possible, right?


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