Life of the Privileged

Everett Edward Kavanaugh Jr. was born in New Haven, Connecticut on June 9, 1941. It’s not too hard to figure out why he was born in New Haven. His father, Everett Edward Kavanaugh Sr., was not only born there but he also attended the city’s most famous institute of higher learning– Yale University.

Now, Brett Michael Kavanaugh, was not born in New Haven, Connecticut. He was born in Washington DC on February 12, 1965. It’s not too hard to figure out why Brett wasn’t born in New Haven, Connecticut like his daddy and granddaddy. That’s because his father Everett Jr. did not go to Yale. He went to Georgetown University. And then he got a job locally as a sales representative for the Northwestern Mutual Insurance Company where he worked for five years beginning in 1963.

Naturally, since Brett was not born in New Haven, Connecticut and his father did not actually attend that city’s most famous institute of higher learning, that means that Brett did not have any connection to Yale University.

Of course that’s nonsense, so when he testified under oath on Thursday that “I got into Yale Law School. That’s the number one law school in the country. I had no connections there. I got there by busting my tail in college,” he must have been making the rather pedantic point that while he was a legacy student as an applicant to the Yale undergraduate program, he was actually accepted to the Law School strictly on merit.

The thing is, Kavanaugh probably got accepted as a Yale undergrad without needing his granddaddy as a notch. It’s just that he likes to talk about his merit as a student at the strangest times:

SEN. SHELDON WHITEHOUSE (Yale University, Class of ’78): So the vomiting that you reference in the Ralph Club reference, related to the consumption of alcohol?

BRETT KAVANAUGH (Yale University, Class of ’87): Senator, I was at the top of my class academically, busted my butt in school. Captain of the varsity basketball team. Got in Yale College. When I got into Yale College, got into Yale Law School. Worked my tail off.

SEN. SHELDON WHITEHOUSE: And did the world “ralph” you used in your yearbook…

Several things were kind of great about this exchange, like the the fact that Sen. Whitehouse’s grandfather, Edwin Sheldon Whitehouse, was a Class of ’05 graduate of Yale University which made Kavanaugh’s Class of ’28 grandfather a bit of a newb. And yet there Brett was demonstrating, one legacy to another, just how hard it is to explain away membership in the high school Ralph Club.

The problem, obviously, is that Sheldon is basically just a Protestant version of Brett. He knows it’s possible to crush your courses at an Ivy League school when you really only used to get juiced in it. He knows this because he witnessed it firsthand.  And he also knows the look of a guy who did so many keg stands at Yale that his face is permanently blood-flushed.

BRETT KAVANAUGH (Yale University, Class of ’87): I like beer. I like beer. I don’t know if you do…

SEN. SHELDON WHITEHOUSE (Yale University, Class of ’78): OK.

BRETT KAVANAUGH: … do you like beer, Senator, or not?

SHELDON WHITEHOUSE: Um, next…

BRETT KAVANAUGH: What do you like to drink?

SHELDON WHITEHOUSE: Next one is…

BRETT KAVANAUGH: Senator, what do you like to drink?

SHELDON WHITEHOUSE: … Judge, have you — I don’t know if it’s “boufed” or “boofed” — how do you pronounce that?

BRETT KAVANAUGH: That refers to flatulence. We were 16.

Watching these Elis pretend not to know the meaning of boof and ralph made for some excellent theater for people like me who spent half my senior year at Princeton High School at parties with Princeton University seniors. It reminded me of the time I witnessed Brooke Shields (Princeton University, Class of ’87) hurl into a heavyweight Hefty trash bag on the front lawn of the Colonial Club after losing one too many points in Beer Pong.

Has anyone called her up to get the correct pronunciation of boof?

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