My cousin, his wife Hubbard, and Liz at a 2007 fundraiser for Fred Thompson.Contrary to the title of this article, I did not date Liz Cheney, but this isn't my story. This is the story of my cousin, Bert, who dated Liz Cheney for two months in 1990 and who has been her friend ever since. He is half a step away from having her cell phone number and she calls him on a secure line, just to chat, two or three times a month. Last year he wintered with the Cheney-Perry family for a week at the Cheney family island near the Turks and Caicos. Don't bother looking for it on Google Earth, it's not there, but Bert said that when he took the helicopter there it was closest to an island "shaped like a banjo."
Bert met Liz at a Foggy Bottom summer picnic in 1989. They were both in college still and working warm-up jobs in DC. Those were heady times to be a college Republican. The Reagan pictures were still hanging in all the police stations and libraries, Dick was SecDef, and it was early days for Bush Senior. Bert was with the young republicans and working in Denny Hastert's office as a summer intern.
Rarely seen apart in DC or elsewhere.Even back then Liz was hooked up in one of those jobs specifically designed to burnish the resume of a protege or family member, the sort of job that sounded impressive, came with a car and a USA credit card, but was really just a chance to network. If you can't hack it in the big show you can go work for a think tank writing white papers about leftist Burmese guerrilla groups and how babies in Tongo are catching AIDS from the drinking water. That was Bert, Liz was bound for better things.
Bert told me Liz was quite drunk at the party and really hitting on Dick Armitage, laughing at all of his golf jokes and hanging on his arm, which is weird because back then everyone called Armitage "Baby Dick," as in he was a baby version of Dick Cheney and, if DC madams are to be trusted, because he had a baby-sized wiener. Bert peeled Liz off her daddy stand-in and held her hair while she spewed chardonnay into a potted ficus. Not one of her finer moments, but it was the start of a friendship with Bert that heated up to romance during the spring of 1990.
Bert has told me dozens of stories about the Cheney family, many of which I am sworn to secrecy on, but Bert has authorized me to share the following.
- The Cremation of Care is one of the most important coming-of-age rituals for a member of the political elite.In August of '89 Bert was invited to Bohemian Grove by Hastert, who needed a valet for his steamer trunks full of bondage equipment and fat-man-sized wedding dresses. Liz played one of the dancing nymphs during the Cremation of Care at the Owl Shrine. She was making eyes at Bert, but he had to play the part of Wicked Chalice and act out a simulated esoteric blood ritual by torchlight. He was also approached to join the Gay CIA at this same Bohemian Grove event, which turned out to be a dare/prank invented by Nixon to trick G. Gordon Liddy into inhaling one of Nixon's infamous "fart bags."
- Liz became obsessed with necklacing. While working for USAID in 1990 she flew to South Africa, sneaked out of the embassy with a security detail, and paid a Joburg cocaine gang called the Bright Eye Boys to necklace a giraffe on videotape.
- Dick Cheney hated the movie The Abyss, though he never explained why. Any time it was on a TV in the 1990s he would become irate and demand the TV be shut off. If he caught even a glimpse of the butterfly alien creatures at the bottom of the ocean he became particularly angry and claimed, once, "That's not what they looked like."
- The Cheneys enjoy a vacation in Germany.Bert probably doesn't want me sharing this one, but Liz Cheney prefers to have sex (with strangers) bent over a fence and outdoors, like a horse, and years later confessed while drunk that this is also how she prefers to give birth (to strangers). All but one of her children was born this way. Grace Cheney was born in a dolphin birthing pool in Hawaii with the assistance of a pod of bottle-noseds. They mistook the newborn for a shark and attempted to jam her gills with their noses.
- During a visit to Israel Liz Cheney was shown a secret part of the Torah that only Likud Party members and a handful of pro-Israel Christians are ever allowed to see. This version of the Torah is the source of the term "neocon" and describes, in prophecy, Paul Wolfowitz emerging from a "screaming, gnashing fissure" in the earth.
- During Cheney's stint as VP, he was so paranoid that he formed an unofficial SSS or Super Secret Service to protect him from the regular Secret Service. They mostly just played cards with him and showed him how to get onto the Internet to look up the mineral resources of various former Soviet states.
You might think the Cheney family would carefully guard all these secrets, but they don't. They figure anything bad enough to be damaging would either also damage the person telling it or would be too strange to be believed. I don't know about that, but when Bert tells his stories I tend to believe them.
Even though Bert is still in touch with Liz, he has moved on politically from the Republicans and considers himself a true libertarian. The last time I spoke with him he was considering running for Sheriff so that he could fire all the cops. Liz Cheney is currently a policy analyst, critic of the current President, part of the Draft Liz Cheney for 2012 movement, and author of the Liz Cheney/Predator Drone 2012 campaign platform.
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