Bristol's odd, and very politically convenient, pregnancy with Tripp Johnston.
Taking up where we left of in the first part of my review of Levi's book, Trig has just arrived, and (pg. 53) Levi finally confirms what Sadie and her mother have been saying all along, that Bristol WANTED to get pregnant:
"I'm the one," Bristol said, "who should be having a baby. Not Sarah."
"Bristol looked at me. "Let's get pregnant."
So for all of those haters out there who called Sadie names and ridiculed her for "spreading false stories about poor Bristol," this one's for you!
On pg. 54 Levi says:
As Sarah slipped into her old routine, back and forth to Anchorage, with an occasional trip to Juneau, the furor about Trig--was Bristol the real mommy?--continued. We pretty much ignored it; it was too crazy for words.
"Too crazy for words?" Remember this phrase when we get to the last post on this book, it will prove interesting.
On pg. 55 Levi asks Bristol the following:
Are you pregnant? I asked her over the phone.
Are you lying?
No. She shot back. I'm not fucking lying.
Fine I told her. But I knew.
He then goes on to say that having a baby was all she had talked about since Trig had arrived TWO WEEKS BEFORE!
This would have been less than eight months before Tripp was born on December 27, and it was announced that his due date was supposed to be about ten days earlier than that by the Palin family. So if Levi is correct that means that the Palin's absolutely moved the pregnancy up in order to make it inconceivable that Bristol could be Trig's mother AND also be ready to give birth in mid December.
It is only one page later that Levi says Bristol confirmed her pregnancy by showing him, you guessed it, "one of these Clearblue plastic pregnancy tests." (Is that the only brand they sell in Wasilla?)
However Bristol apparently has NO plans to tell her mother, claiming; "My mom didn't tell me she was pregnant, did she? Why should I tell her?"
However one page later the situation is taken out of their hands when Willow, who apparently finds pregnancy tests with the accuracy of a hog rooting out truffles, finds the test strip in Bristol's purse.
So Levi, Bristol, and the famous supportive friend, who Levi now reveals to be Sammy Becker, head on over to the Palin house to break the news.
Levi claims that this very uncomfortable conversation came the day after his birthday.
So essentially it was the day AFTER this picture was taken.
I wonder how much somebody gets paid for giving a speech about THAT to a room full of Christian women?
Okay now for the most bizarre part of Levi's version of Bristol's pregnancy story.
On pg. 60 Levi says that he and Bristol were in Rebirth Tattoo parlor, and while Levi was getting Bristol's name tattooed on his finger (So he would have something to regret in a few months), Bristol's phone rings. Levi reports the following exchange:
"No, Sarah," she said. "That won't be happening."
"No, Levi and I want this baby. We are not giving it to you. Never."
I could hear her mother's voice. She was saying that she and Todd would be adopting our baby to avoid a scandal.
"No, No, No." Bristol's forehead was a series of crinkly lines. "No. nope. I don't care. No."
"I'm worried," Sarah said to Bristol, "about you."
She'd already told her attorney, Thomas Van Flein, to draw up papers.
Okay now according to Levi this conversation happened only a week after Sammy Becker broke the news that Bristol was pregnant. In other words only about three weeks after Trig arrived. [Correction. It appears from Levi's Vanity Fair article that this conversation happened in August. As I mentioned before Levi's book is poorly written, and this passage was not at all clear. Apparently the "week later" it references, was a week after Sadie, Sherry, and Sarah went to the Winona Judd concert, NOT a week after they broke the pregnancy news to Sarah.]
Now riddle me this Batman. How does adopting Tripp protect Bristol from scandalous talk? Especially if many people were still pretty sure that she was the real mother of Trig?
Sarah might be able to trick people into believing that she gave birth to ONE baby but certainly not TWO! And what about the VP nomination that Sarah was angling for at that same time?
No, nothing about the timeline of this conversation makes sense.
Even if Sarah were offering to adopt Tripp, but NOT fake another pregnancy, it would do NOTHING to keep people from believing it was Bristol's child. Of course, as we all know, Sarah was soon to throw Bristol under the bus to keep people from asking to see Trig's birth certificate anyhow.
As it turned out Bristol's pregnancy was the very thing that Sarah needed to get the press off her back, and to give the public something new and shiny to distract them, a teen pregnancy!
But the crazy thing about Bristol's pregnancy is that it is almost as odd as her mother's.
For instance THIS is how Bristol looked in July of 2008. (Photo courtesy of Dennis Zaki.)
According to Levi's timeline this should only be Bristol's second month of pregnancy, so she looks about right. However less than seven weeks later, at the RNC on September 3rd, Bristol looked like THIS:
You know as a middle aged man I feel very uncomfortable staring at a young woman's chest, but seriously, WTF?
I think it is fairly clear that Bristol had some help in making her pregnancy look further along than it actually was.
Which makes sense, because essentially Sarah was using her daughter as a living breathing subsitute for Trig's birth certificate. Apparently padding up her daughter to look like the Michelin Man in front of millions of Americans was less humiliating than having to produce a child's birth certificate.
Of course the real reason to go this route was because IT was possible, and the other was NOT!
After the election the Palins came home to Wasilla and suddenly Levi is trapped in a house of anger and hostility.
Sarah is in a constant rage toward Obama, who she believes stole the election.
From pg. 82:
She said Obama cheated to win. She talked as it they were the only two running. Not Biden, not McCain. Sarah and Barack, in hand-to-hand combat.
Levi had also once asked what Sarah thought a Vice President does exactly:
Take over--she had smiled--when the president dies. (Are the hairs on the back of YOUR neck standing up? Yeah, me too!)
Fortunately for ALL Americans Palin never got THAT close to the White House, and after the political campaign was over, and Sarah no longer needed to fake a happy little family for the knuckledraggers, she decided that Bristol would be better off as a single teen mother, and started trying to pry the teens apart.
From pg. 83:
Things went from bad to worse. Bristol started saying that her mom wanted her to dump me. To my face, Sarah acted all nice.
Todd told Bristol that if she left me, he would buy her a brand new car. Bristol thought Sarah was making him say that.
Now even with all of that negativity Levi tried to stick it out, and did manage to keep it together and hang in there until December.
Now let me take you back a little to what was happening around this time on my blog, Regina's blog, Bree's blog, and Audrey's blog, and a few others as well.
We were constantly posing the question of, "Where was Bristol's child?" As we got past mid-December we started to point out that as we moved further from the announced due date and closer to January that Bristol being pregnant was losing it effectiveness as a reason why SHE could not be Trig's birth mother.
Now what is very interesting about Levi's story is that he claims
Todd, who you will remember is offering Bristol a car to dump him,
suddenly asks him to come along on a snowmachine trip up to the family's
cabin. Levi feels comfortable doing so because, as Levi "writes" on pg 88:
Bristol wasn't due for another three weeks.
That's right! According to Levi, Bristol was supposed to give birth toward the end of January, NOT mid-December!
Now three weeks before the baby is due, but two weeks after the world expected the baby to arrive, Todd suggest that he and Levi take a little snowmachine trip. Not only that, but they also take Willow
and Piper up there as well, leaving Bristol and Sarah behind.
So now you have the entire Palin family, including Levi far away from Wasilla, leaving Bristol and her now panicky mother alone in the house.
Gee what could possibly go wrong?
At ten o'clock that night, the night of December 26th, Levi receives a call saying that Bristol is about to give birth, three weeks early, and just in time to keep those rumors about babygate off limits to the mainstream media.
He races back in plenty of time to witness the birth. The very convenient, and perfectly timed birth.
The day that Tripp arrived Sadie was only allowed to visit her newborn nephew at the hospital (and yes it WAS Mat-Su Regional) for about a minute. And then she was summarily kicked out.
Sherry, who had to get permission from her parole officer to leave the house, had to wait until the next day to see the baby. She was ALSO only allowed to visit with little Tripp for a few minutes.
But the Palins did not really care about the feelings of the Johnston family, after all they had outlived their usefulness. Essentially Tripp's arrival signaled the beginning of Levi's departure. And in just over a week Bristol kicked him to the curb.
A few months later after trying unsuccessfully to spend time with his son, Levi was forced to go on national television in an effort to convince the Palins to let him see Tripp.
Oooh, I love this next part! This is where I come into the picture, and things REALLY start to get interesting!
Team Levi, or the gang that could not (or would not) shoot straight!