Recall Sam Adams spokesman Jasun Wurster essentially admitted defeat at city council last week, taking three minutes to deliver a prepared speech with a handful of his allies also in attendance. One gentleman wore a pair of sunglasses and a stars and stripes shirt, another a baseball cap with a placard attached, reading "Liar." He reminded me of a cartoon in The New Yorker last week featuring a guy walking down the street waving a placard saying, "I am a nut job." Only less funny.

Wurster told council he had 12 days left until the October 5 deadline to gather his stated goal of 50,000 signatures, and that he had "distributed petitions for the potential of over 100,000 signatures."

But how many signatures has he actually got? "We don't want to get into saying how many we've got," Wurster told me. "Because the number will be too high for some people and too low for others. There were two possible wins for this campaign. One was to get Adams out of office, the other was to get people involved in the political process, and that's already been achieved.

"We've also got some big things planned for the next 12 days," he continued. Not to kick a terminally ill horse, but is he talking about "big failures"?

Back in August, the Mercury discovered the recall campaign needed to gather 786 signatures a day to reach its goal of 50,000 signatures by the deadline. The only conceivable reason for keeping quiet about the numbers now is an epic failure.

Wurster had some harsh words for Mayor Sam Adams. "It's not about you being a punch line... this recall is about our fair city, and the unfairness by which you stole an election."

Trouble is, Wurster's rapidly becoming a punch line, himself. He also asked City Commissioner Randy Leonard, "Really, do you want to be known as Commissioner Randy 'F-Bomb' Leonard? Really, do you kiss your wife with that mouth?" in relation to Leonard's recent run-in with a Leverage production crewmember outside city hall.

I still have the red mark where I slammed my palm into my forehead. If I were Commissioner Leonard, I would henceforth demand that people only refer to me as "the F-Bomb"—or perhaps simply "the Bomb," for short. The recall movement has become increasingly tone deaf over recent weeks, but at that moment it crossed into chiding schoolmarm ridiculousness. For many of us, it can't disappear quickly enough.