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Earning America Points

Memorial Day was hot, the sun was punishing. Kieran, being an idiot, wore jeans. Saba, not being an idiot, wore a dress.

Kieran and Saba went to Mt. Vernon - the perfect destination for Memorial Day. Not feeling like driving (Kieran rarely feels like driving), Kieran proposed taking a cruise up the river and back, which made for a longer day but a more leisurely and enjoyable experience. They docked at the Mt. Vernon wharf, headed up the hill toward the estate, detoured briefly en route to stop at the slaves' cemetery.

Then onward to the tombs of George and Martha Washington. Kieran and Saba stood there for a few moments before realizing that they had for some reason been chained off, with most visitors on the other side of the chains, Kieran and Saba on the inside of the chains. Then one length of chain was lifted, and Saba spied the man with the Alaska T-shirt.

"What are the odds?" Saba said, knowing of course of Kieran's Alaska connection.

"Do you know who that is?" asked Kieran, spying the person next to the man in the Alaska T-shirt.

"Yes, it's some guy in an Alaska T-shirt," said Saba.

"No," explained Kieran. "It's Governor Palin."

And so it was: Sarah Palin, husband Todd, daughter Piper, a couple others. And, apparently being treated as part of the entourage, Kieran and Saba.

The previously reticent guide now expounded in detail about the tomb. Then he turned to Piper and asked her to lead the group in reciting the Pledge of Allegiance.

Kieran doesn't like the Pledge of Allegiance. He thinks it's silly and mind-numbing. He thinks pretty much the same about Sarah Palin. And yet, like a sheep (or out of respect to his adopted nation, which despite everything he loves), he placed hand on heart and recited along.

England-born Kieran and Ethiopia-born (but Chicago-raised) Saba, reciting the Pledge of Allegiance. With Sarah Palin. On Memorial Day. In front of George Washington's tomb. That has to be worth at least a million America points right there.

Afterward, Kieran and Saba had to counterbalance the Americaness of it all by watching this:

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