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Edwin's reality: 'A man's only as old as the woman he feels'

July 13, 2011

The recent news that former Louisiana Gov. Edwin Edwards and his fiancée, 32-year-old Trina Grimes Scott, are in talks with a reality television producer shone a ray of hope on the cultural wasteland.  If there are going to be shows about aging cat daddies and their relationships with blondes 50 years their junior, Edwards makes a lot livelier subject than Hugh Hefner.

In keeping with the times, the 83-year-old Edwards posted the news on his Face book page.

“Trina Grimes Scott and I are very excited about this opportunity and wanted you all to hear it here first! No further details at this time, but I will say that it is in the developmental stages!" he posted.

Last week, Edwards ended six months of house arrest his daughter’s, following eight years in a federal prison on racketeering charges. Like a Cajun Napoleon, he’s barred from running for office for another 15 years, but he’s already done some consulting for the state Democratic Party.

Not to mention the reality show feelers. This format wasn’t exactly kind to Sarah Palin, but Edwards could be a natural. We remember him in his high-rolling days, when he defied federal prosecutors by riding a horse-driven coach to court and bamboozled David Duke at every turn in their memorable 1991 governor’s race. To hear his fiancée tell it, he hasn’t lost that old pizzazz.

“He came in larger than life, shaking hands and talking to everybody,” she said of her first meeting with Edwards, at the Oakdale Federal Prison visitation center.

Edwards made his first formal public appearance Tuesday night at the Foundation for Historical Louisiana, and he seemed to be in his old form.

“A man’s only as old as the woman he feels,” Edwards told well-wishers, his future bride No. 3 by his side.

He got two standing ovations.

"I really feel like I came out of prison more popular than I went in," Edwards said. "I think in some part because people realize that an injustice occurred and that I handled it like a man. I took it. I survived. I said that I would walk out, and I did."

There are lots of political situations these days which suggest themselves to a reality-show kind of treatment.  There might be an audience for instance, for a show that contrasts the daily lives of South Carolina’s former governor, Mark Sanford, with its current one, Nikki Haley. The location shots in Argentina would be a strong point.

Then there’s the taciturn Barack Obama faced off against the insistent Eric Cantor, with the increasingly nervous John Boehner in between. You can almost imagine the cutaways, as each character relives what they’ve just experienced.

Maybe that one could be done “Survivor”-style, with all the contestants on a raft headed for a waterfall.



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