It’s August 9th, 1964, 1:17 pm. The Gulf of Tonkin incident, the most famous false flag incident in modern history, occurred just 7 days ago and just 2 days ago a resolution was passed that would effectively give the President, Lyndon Baines Johnson, the authority to enter hostile conflict with the North Vietnam forces. It happens. The phone call. An event that would reverberate throughout history and into my dorm room on December 1st, 2021 at 12:30 am. For a little bit of background, this phone call occurs between LBJ and Joseph Haggar, a man described by TexasMonthly as a “pants tycoon”. Now throughout this infamous conversation LBJ does many utterly confounding things. The purpose for this short phone call is quite understandable, LBJ wants some “slacks,” that are “real lightweight,” which have more space in the crotch – “down where your nuts hang”. LBJ is perhaps our most vocally “hung” president, although I hold the personal belief that John Tyler was secretly packing heat. Regardless, in the course of a few short minutes, LBJ: describes how many pants hurt his testicular region, lets out a belch that can only be described as profound, asks once more for extra space in the pants in between the zipper and the “bunghole”, and concludes by saying he’s “running for a funeral.” This last part enraptured me. Whose funeral?
The world was in shambles, America was about to go to war and LBJ’s balls hurt cause his pants were too tight. Whose funeral was more important than the multitude of issues facing a man who would lead the country to war on false premises? I needed to know, and so did my only other friend who was still awake at this time, Cormac. What followed was an incredible display of historical scholarship. We split up and searched databases, scouring for evidence and rejoicing as the puzzle began to take shape. Now looking back I realize we made some errors. For instance, in the first website link Cormac sent to me just minutes into our mission, in the middle of the page it lists the location of the funeral and the individual whose funeral it was. Now both of us missed this because neither of us bothered to read past the first few sentences of the website, but scholarly research is about the journey, not the destination. Instead, we proceeded to do over an hour of research on the world’s stupidest conversation. Then we found it, “President Johnson flew to Texas late in the afternoon of Friday, 7 August, to spend the weekend at his ranch and attend the funeral of Bess Beeman, a former campaign worker.” Incredible journeys are often followed by a crushing sense of emptiness. No great revelations, no secret plot to hide that JFK was still alive, just a U.S. president going to the funeral of a former employee… wearing a pair of slacks that were just an inch too tight around his nads.