Exclusively in our imaginations, that is. We’re not sure whether Hillary Clinton, in the past 48 hours, has called Silda Wall Spitzer. But it’s not out of the realm of possibility. Clinton is close with the Spitzers, and she did call Dina Matos McGreevey after her ordeal with the whole “My husband’s a gay governor” thing to give counsel. So we’re just going to assume that she did for a moment (we’re not sure you’ll ever hear the real story confirmed by her press people anyway — they likely don’t want to remind everyone that Hillary for a long time was best known for standing by a philandering husband). We’ll never know for sure what might have gone on in such a conversation (until, of course, Silda gives up on Eliot and gets her $3 million book deal), but we do have an idea. Thus, we have constructed for your reading pleasure an imaginary phone conversation between Hillary Clinton and Silda Wall Spitzer:
[A phone rings somewhere in the Spitzer apartment on the Upper East Side. Silda is holed up in the bedroom, reading a copy of Honor Thyself, Danielle Steel’s latest best-seller. She does not get up — the thing has been ringing off the hook, and it’s always for him. Usually these insistent calls come late at night, after she’s thankfully taken a Klonopin and drifted off to sleep. On the other side of the apartment, Eliot is surrounded by advisers in the children’s playroom. He is seated precariously on a Playmobil tea table. He picks up the phone.]
Eliot: If this is anyone but the Daily Princetonian, I have no comment, okay?
Hillary: Hello, Eliot.
Eliot: Kristen? Is it you? I’ve been trying—
Hillary: NO, it’s not KRISTEN. God, they always have white-trash names, don’t they?
Hillary: [Her voice drips like acid on a baby’s flesh] It’s me. Remember, your friend who you fucked with your idiotic driver’s-licenses-for-illegal-immigrants bullshit? Oh, sorry, fucked was the wrong word. You save that for interstate hookers.
Eliot: Oh, hi, Hillary.
Hillary: Can I speak to Silda, please?
[Eliot looks relieved and tells an aide to alert his wife. She’s within shouting distance, but since yesterday she’s been doing that thing she does where she pretends she can’t hear him. Silda picks up the phone in the bedroom.]
Hillary: Silda, it’s Hillary.
Silda: Eliot! Get off the phone. I can hear you panting.
Eliot: I just wanted to make sure it connected. Bye!
Silda: I know you’re still there, Eliot. Wouldn’t you rather go stick your dick in a muffler and drive across state lines? Get off the phone! [Eliot hangs up.]
Hillary: Ah, I remember those days. Cock jokes really help. This kind of thing makes you realize that men are giant phalluses, huh?
Silda: Don’t take this the wrong way, Hillary, but when you start calling, it means the shit has really hit the fan.
Hillary: I know. Though I prefer to use the term “the cigar has hit the intern.”
Silda: I don’t know if I’m ready to laugh about this yet.
Hillary: You’re going to have to. These next few weeks are going to be filled with such seriousness that you’re going to have to laugh every once in a while. Otherwise you’ll want to kill him.
Silda: But I don’t want to let him off the hook.
Hillary: You should really deal with this head on and take all the pain you can; otherwise you’ll never get over it. But part of you will need to not take this seriously. He’s going to do this thing where he’s going to be really serious and act like everything he does is so grave and important and sad. It’s another way of him relishing the fact that he is the powerful one, even if it means his power has destroyed things. You need to deflate that. Otherwise you’ll hate him, and he’ll go on thinking he is the center of the world.
Silda: Wow. Is that what you did?
Hillary: No, swatted him in the balls with Lyndon Johnson’s nine iron.
Silda: Did that help?
Hillary: It meant he didn’t cheat on me for at least a two-week period. Listen, these men are all the same. I think it’s too late to change who they are. But it doesn’t mean you can’t still have a family and you can’t still have a great life.
Silda: Do you think they ever learn that their actions have consequences?
Hillary: I don’t think Bill ever did. Otherwise he wouldn’t have been able to be so confident through that mess. I think you’re lucky, in a way. Not because of the embarrassment, but because all this horrible shame has made Eliot a human again.
Silda: But I don’t know if I was with him because he was a human. I mean, I married him because of it, but at this point with our kids nearly grown up, our life wasn’t really about us. It was about the public.
Hillary: But it wasn’t, for him, you know? He was still taking time out for himself in a selfish way — with the other girls and all. Now you need to take as much time for you as you can. Do whatever you want.
Silda: Should I leave him, do you think?
Hillary: That’s a decision only you can make. You’re the hero of the family now.
Silda: But I just don’t know how I feel. It’s all too public. I wish someone would just tell me what to do.
Hillary: Well, think about what you want in the long term, after all of this has died down. It really depends on that.
Silda: On what?
Hillary: On whether or not you want to run for office, of course.