In my attempt at a humor column loosely related to the first presidential debate, I learned a lesson. I angered two groups of people: those who thought I should have blamed Trump, and those who thought I should have blamed Biden.

I’m not falling into that trap, dear readers. Many of the columns that appear next to mine are doing a terrific job of echoing your views, or raising your blood pressure. Not mine. As America’s slowest-rising newspaper columnist, I can assure you that this column is hanging by a thread. One critical letter, or one angry phone call, and you may be reading recipes or medical advice in this space next week. I think we can all agree, either would be an upgrade.

So what can I do to make everyone happy? I have an idea.

Do you remember that charming store in the mall? First, do you remember the mall? Anyway, the store is called Build-A-Bear Workshop. They assemble teddy bears and other stuffed animals, tailored to your tastes. Purple, blue, or brown fur? You name it. Big eyes, button nose, shy smile? Done. Everybody leaves Build-A-Bear happy, because they get exactly what they want.

With that in mind, today you can Build-A-Column. Grab a pen, circle your selections of the candidates and the multiple choice answers, and create your own personal column. When finished, cut it out, and put it on the fridge for others to see. Let’s get started.

“After observing the 2020 presidential campaign, and starting with no pre-conceived notions, I have decided that (Trump) (Biden) is the obvious choice.

I say this because he is the only candidate who will A) preserve our American way of life, B) keep our foreign adversaries at bay, or C) provide “Saturday Night Live” with the funniest material.

It has also become apparent that he will A) rewrite immigration laws, B) enforce law and order, or C) watch “Law and Order.”

I think anyone can see that (Biden) (Trump) is a man who can A) think on his feet, B) stand on his record, or C) never pass a polygraph test.

It has become abundantly clear that (Trump) (Biden) has spent A) too much time in his basement, B) too much time in his bunker, or C) too much money on his hair.

Now let’s talk foreign policy. This election is all about our nation’s reputation. If (Biden) (Trump) is elected, you will see A) America in its rightful place as a world leader, B) dictators shaking in their boots, or C) a spike in border crossings to Canada.

You can tell a lot about a man by his supporters. That’s why (Trump) (Biden) is endorsed by A) the Hollywood elite, B) the lunatic fringe, or C) newspaper cartoonists.

There’s no doubt (Biden) (Trump) is a family man. His family will soon make headlines by A) being strong role models, B) advocating for policies to move America forward, or C) trying to avoid prison.

Before the next debate, (Trump) (Biden) should demand A) an unbiased moderator, B) a free and open exchange of ideas, or C) five bathroom breaks.

We should all be thankful the next debate will not include A) Chris Wallace, B) audience members without masks, or C) a swimsuit competition.

Speaking of TV, I miss the days when A) Walter Cronkite just read the news without telling me what to think, B) Johnny Carson joked about both candidates equally, or C) my remote control had only five buttons.

When the election is finally over, we can say for sure that A) the pre-election polls were right, B) the pre-election polls were wrong, or C) no one wants to pick up the campaign signs.

I feel certain that after my candidate wins the election, he will say, A) “I’m going to continue the proven policies of the past four years,” B) “I’m going to erase the failed policies of the past four years,” or C) “Who in their right mind would want this job?”

Whoever loses the election will blame it on A) a rigged voting system, B) the coronavirus, or C) voters who wrote in “Is this all you got?”

You can be sure that if (Biden) (Trump) doesn’t win, he will say, A) “Let’s put the negativity behind us and unite as a nation,” B) “Can we make it best two out of three?” or C) “The loser doesn’t have to go build houses like Jimmy Carter, right?”

In closing, regardless of the outcome, I promise to spend the next four years A) supporting President Trump, B) supporting President Biden, or C) living in the woods, far from civilization. Y’all let me know when you get this figured out, okay?

David Carroll, a Chattanooga news anchor, is the author of “Volunteer Bama Dawg,” a collection of his best columns. You may contact him at 900 Whitehall Road, Chattanooga, TN 37405 or



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