Our title today does not refer to harvesting longish green vegetables from the garden. Cucumbers came in weeks ago (in the D.C. area, rather poorly this year because of hard rains.) No, the phrase is an older way of referring to the “Silly Season,” the time in summer when politics and other activities die down temporarily, at least in theory. Reality hasn’t exactly followed the theory this year. (See: Afghanistan, COVID, the U.S.—Mexico border crisis, spiking murder and crime statistics, wildfires, hurricanes, Latin Mass scuffles, clerics on GRINDR, etc.) Things are so somber on so many fronts at this rag end of Summer 2021 that to call these days “silly” would be an insult to wide swaths of acute human suffering.
But there is a sense in which this season is still “silly.” Another feature of Cucumber Time – again in theory – is that the lack of serious events is supposed to drive the media to invent virtually weightless “news” stories to fill space. There’s much of real consequence to write about these days, but our ever-ready MSM has maintained the most sacred elements of the Silly Season, even in the face of overwhelming odds.
It’s no secret that MSM basically stopped being “news” outlets the past few years and turned into highly partisan outlets – mostly of a liberal/left bent. They’ve turned passing political matters – parties, elections, movements like BLM, Critical Race Theory, even vaccinations and face masks – into quasi-religious crusades. So, in some respects, it’s welcome relief when they engage in “silly” stories.