On May 11, 2016, I officially launched my write-in campaign to be named the Best Bahn Mi in the Chicago Reader’s Best of Chicago 2016 online poll.
The results were announced yesterday, naming Nhu Lan Bakery the best Vietnamese sandwich Chicago offers.
What follows is a text of the concession speech I delivered at my campaign headquarters on Thursday, June 23.
Hello, thank you! Thank you! Thank you!
They said it couldn’t be done! They said there has never been a best food winner of a “Chicago Reader Best Of” that wasn’t actually a food or involved even remotely in the preparation of said food.
They said, “Paul, you’re crazy! You’re just some wild-eyed dreamer, not a French-influenced Vietnamese sandwich made of delicious combination of head cheese, mayonnaise, carrots, daikon, peppers and cilantro on a baguette!”
Like walking on the moon, like cracking the human genome, like creating this country we call America, they said it couldn’t be done.
It turns out they were right. I lost, like, super-bad.
I am here today to congratulate Nhu Lan Bakery’s bahn mi sandwich on its victory, big victory. We live in a republic and our voters make these decisions and we respect that very much and it was a big win. In light of this win, I am officially suspending my campaign for Best Bahn Mi in Chicago, 2016.
I would like of course to thank my family for standing proudly at my side throughout this campaign. My wife Tammy Lynette, our three beautiful children, our two ugly ones, our dog America the Beautiful and our cat Dr. Hercules Veruca steadfastly stood by me through the late nights, endless campaign trips, late-night meetings in different parking garages with the underlings of my numerous, numerous illegal campaign contributors.
They literally stood by my side throughout the campaign, all standing in a row, smiling and waving literally nonstop since I announced the campaign. Even when the cameras weren’t on, or that time I went swimming, they stood by my side through it all.
Just… just standing there. The whole time.
You can stop now, Tammy. Please… just stop.
Of course, I also need to thank my campaign staff, from the high-level opposition research operatives who dug up every dirty secret Nhu Lan’s bahn mi had to the wide-eyed college interns who didn’t go to the media with the late-night genital photos I snapchatted.
From the valedictorian political science student I got to dress up as Pinocchio to follow my opponent’s rallies, screaming that my opponent’s a liar — thanks Gov. Rauner for the idea — to the high-level donors flooding my coffers with anonymous influxes of unregulated corporate cash, we couldn’t have gotten this far without you.
Thank you all. By my personal Lord and Savior, thank you.
And I would like to say thank you to one more group of people: America.
As I stand here before the American flag, proudly wearing an American flag lapel pin that itself has a smaller American flag atop it, as I stand before you on this podium made of flags in the actual American flag boxing gear Apollo Creed wore in “Rocky IV,” talking into a microphone that has not one, not two but seven small American flags and one Greek one left over from the Grexit symposium on Tuesday — Abel, you were supposed to get all of them… Abel, you’re fired — as I stand here in the greatest city in the greatest country on, yes it’s not “politically correct” to say this but by my personal Lord and Savior it’s true — the greatest quadrant of the greatest hemisphere on earth!
[Pause for cheers for the region located north of the equator, west of the prime meridian and east of the 180th meridian.]
Yes! Yes! God bless the northern quadrant of the western hemisphere, including but not limited to Mexico, Canada, Ireland, Greenland, Iceland, Suriname, Guyana, French Guiana, Venezuela, Belize, Nicaragua, Portugal, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Panama, Morocco, Western Sahara, Mauritania, Senegal, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Liberia, Sierra Leone and Côte d’Ivoire, sections of Brazil, Columbia, Ecuador, Mali, Algeria, Ghana, England, France and Burkina Faso, all the Caribbean islands AND AMERICA!!!
[More cheers, band plays “God Bless the Northern Quadrant of the Western Hemisphere.”]
Thank you thank you, no seriously shut up. Thank you.
I would like now to close now with a prayer, a prayer I wish to share with you and with my personal Lord and Savior. Please bow your heads and join me.
[Audience bows its collective head in silence.]
Oh Tlazolteotl the Filth-Eater, we thank you today for the blessings you have bestowed upon us. We call you of many names: She Of The Two Faces, She Who Devours Our Excrement or The Death That Comes From Lust.
You might not have gotten Chicago to choose me as the best Vietnamese baguette sandwich in a free weekly newspaper’s web poll, but I thank you for letting me bask in your glory, oh patron goddess of fertility, childbirth, steam baths and prostitutes.
And of me. Thank you, my God, for this moment.
May God strengthen our people. May God strengthen our nation. May God strengthen the conservative movement. May God strengthen the Republican Party. May God strengthen our eventual nominee. And may God always bless and strengthen this great nation, the United States of America. Thank you and God bless you all. Thank you very much.