Saturday, November 12, 2016

Every Day, in Every Way

Do you remember, in "The Return of the Pink Panther," how Chief Inspector Dreyfus keeps repeating Emile Coué's mantra "Every day, in every way, I'm getting better and better"? That's exactly how I feel. I'm a little unhinged, but I keep telling myself that things will be OK. American democracy is resilient. It's built to contain the power of any one individual. I may be babbling and emotionally unstable at the moment, but every day, in every way, I'm getting better and better.

(Of course, in the movie, Dreyfus becomes progressively more insane as the mantra fails him. Hopefully I won't slide down that slippery slope.)

I'm saddened by the remarks I see on Facebook about people cancelling Thanksgiving with family members who voted for Trump, and that kind of thing. One of my coworkers was talking about the need for parts of the United States to secede. That's just not productive thinking. Americans have more similarities than differences. As Michael Moore said this week on Morning Joe, we want the same things for our kids. We just disagree about the best way to attain them. It sucks to be on the losing end of a vote -- and I maintain that part of what makes this vote particularly sucky is the media's complete failure to adequately anticipate a Trump presidency -- but these people are still our family members, and we all have to learn to communicate past this disaster.

Admittedly, I may have trouble talking about the election results with them -- at least without slipping into Dreyfus-like twitching -- but I'm not cancelling family holidays.

It will be interesting to see if physical conflicts, such as family disturbance calls to the police, rise during Thanksgiving and Christmas. I always joke that it's not a family holiday in Florida until there's a fistfight in the front yard -- this comes from my days as a reporter, when I heard plenty of that kind of action on the police scanner -- but I have a feeling that most of the people who would be fistfighting probably voted the Trump side of the ballot.

(Yes, I know. I'm generalizing.)

What really helped me yesterday was seeing this picture of Hillary, hiking in New York the day after conceding. I'm glad to see she's OK, and not curled up in some dark closet. I mean, she's a tough woman. She's been through a lot. I knew she would emerge from this, just as she has from all her past difficulties, but it made me happy to see photographic evidence.

(Photo: A trompe l'oeil delivery van in Cricklewood, last weekend.)


  1. I do not share your optimism that things will be okay. Time will tell.

  2. What a lovely story about Margot Gerster's encounter with the Clintons. Somehow I just cannot imagine Trump walking quietly through autumn woodland, sensitively observing the nuances of Nature and listening to the wind in the trees. He's just not human that way.

  3. It would also be interesting to see if there is an increase in race-hate crimes as we saw with Brexit. Trump's rhetoric will certainly have given the race-haters licence to act.

  4. I've seen several comments, including from Michael Moore (who accurately predicted a Trump win months ago) that DT will most likely not serve out his term. Michael feels he will do something self serving and illegal. It has also been mentioned that he only got in the race to make money for his brand and never expected to win. He obviously has no idea what he's doing. He has the attention span of a gnat. He's surrounding himself with political insiders (how ironic) and lobbyists who do not have our best interests at heart. They will run the country. What can go wrong? Of course, if Trump is out, that leaves Pence...less stupid, more dangerous. If you want a laugh, though, google "Periods for Pence". It's pretty entertaining.

  5. I've thought about that picture of Hillary so much. She looks almost ethereally beautiful.
    If I'd just gone through what she's gone through, I'd be sitting in a closet, surrounded by empty bottles of vodka.
    Which is why I'll never run for any office ever.
    I got good sleep last night and although I know that nothing has changed except that every bit of news we get about DT's plans, his choices for advisors is WORSE and more scary, at least I feel more capable of...
    Fuck it.
    I don't feel capable of anything. But I did get good sleep.
    Thankfully, all but one family member of mine (and she's an in-law) are yellow dog Democrats. Thanksgiving may have tears but they will be shared equally.

  6. That is a perfect description of me too. Every day, better and better. I watched Bill Maher with my friends Julie and Dave last night and that made me feel a little better too. And, you are right about Thanksgiving. I'm having it with a mix of Democrat and Republican friends. I'm guessing we won't talk much politics but if we do, I'm confident it will be civil.

  7. The reports of hate crimes, especially in schools, is what I find so incredibly disturbing. Horrific signs left on water fountains; Muslim kids accosted in lunchrooms; chants of "Build that wall" in a school that includes Hispanic children. That is what these Trump supporters voted for. And not one single person who voted for Trump should be able to say, "oh, I'm not racist. I like his economic policies." He has no "policies." He can't string together a sentence, much less have a coherent policy. And by voting for him, that was a vote of approval for behavior that is now playing out across this country.

  8. I've voted in plenty of elections where my candidate didn't win. this is not that. he wasn't just an opposing candidate, he is a completely immoral liar cheater stealer racist bigot misogynist who bragged about being a sexual predator, who has a trial for rape and one for fraud coming up, and a failure as a businessman. I can deal with losing to an opponent. what I can't deal with is that America elected this horrid excuse for a human being to the highest office in this country.

  9. I'm back to not knowing what to think. Angella at 37paddington had an insightful post yesterday that made me stop being optimistic and start worrying, and today there was a follow-up post by Tim Urban to the one I posted on Friday, in which he admits he may have missed a few points because he wrote his first post so quickly after the election. So I'm still processing it all, too. No matter what, I do think we need to be very, very wary and watchful. Things cannot be allowed to deteriorate into free fall.
    Here is Tim's follow up post, in case you read the first one and wanted to see what sober second thought did for him:

  10. By the way, that van paint job is amazingly real-looking - I had to look carefully to see that it was just paint. Very cool.

  11. Family holidays and fist fights in the front yard! In part of the world I came from it wasn't a decent wedding unless there was a full-on brawl.

    It's that thin veneer of civilisation....


  12. I too am wanting to know a bit more about the paint job on the van. Very nice.

    I can't even watch the news these days. It sickens me.

  13. I got talked down off the ledge by a cousin, so I'll be heading to NC for Thanksgiving as planned. And although my annual T-giving poem refers to the fact that my candidate lost (they won't be surprised), we will not otherwise discuss politics. But I'm going to be biting my tongue while I interact with my nice Christian aunts who voted for that man. Sigh.