I was all about this blog the day I started it. I was ready to dive right in; ready to make people laugh, make people think, have people discuss my thoughts and ramblings during their obligatory water cooler talk at work. (Is that still an actual thing or is it just an expression now? Do water coolers in the work place still exist? Or have all pop culture discussions moved to social media? Answer in the comments below… I really don’t know.) I was ready to finally make my mark on the world. Move over, Kim K… or at least Kim Zolciak, Donny is here.
And then election night happened. To say I was thrown off course is an understatement. Anything you’ve read or any skit you’ve seen about how these results shook liberal white people to their core while people of color already knew how nasty this nation could be was written about me. I was useless for a few days. Catatonic, even.
A few days later, my sadness and despair turned to anger and confusion. I didn’t know how this could have happened. We had the numbers! Was this country really set up to only help rich, white, straight cis-gendered men? (Spoiler Alert: Yes.) I took my anger during those few days to spew the same venom as the people who “won*,” including, but not limited to, posting old nudes of soon-to-be First Lady**. I quickly deleted them, but I was still disgusted with myself that I had stooped to this man (and his followers)’s level.
*Spoiler Alert Part II: Nobody “won” with these results. If you’re on your high horse now and saying otherwise now, get back to me in 4 years when you’re competing in the Hunger Games.
**DISCLAIMER: I have no problem with First Lady Melania Trump. Is she my FLOTUS? No-tus. That spot will always be reserved for Mama Michelle, but Melania has done nothing wrong. She was a model, she found a sugar daddy, and somehow along the way, got roped into this whole campaign. I don’t blame the woman for her husband’s views. Sure, she could have left him, but she was rolling in dollar bills based on nothing except her looks. If you got it, flaunt it, honey.
As I was going through the stages of grief, my anger finally turned to acceptance. Did I decide to accept this man as our president? I’ll let Michelle take it from here:
Short answer: no, I did not. There’s tons of white conservatives going on about how NOW we need to unite. To that, I respond, unite amongst yourselves. It’s clear your president has no vision of uniting. He’s made his views clear. So, no, there won’t be any uniting coming from me. There will, however, be hope.
I listened to Obama, I listened to Hillary. I listened to anyone offering messages of hope. I had no choice. I marched, and in one of the most powerful and meaningful days of my life, felt connected to so many people that I didn’t know. I had taken this awful day in American history and was ready to move forward. I had finally bit down on the pillow and accepted this presidency.
And then Inauguration Day happened. And sure enough, I was back to being useless.
I texted some friends about how I was feeling, hoping that they’d have something to get me out of my funk: an invitation to a Fight Club, heroine, information on the president I could use to blackmail him. I wasn’t picky.
One of my closest friends/one of the most inspired and motivated women I know, Emily, sent me a message written by comedian Patton Oswalt. I won’t post the whole thing now, but what I needed to hear most was:
IF you can afford it — go find a struggling theater company and pay to see whatever play they’re putting on. Or a struggling art gallery or music club or museum. Leave ’em money and see what they’re about. Go see an indie film that’s got stellar reviews and no audience. Or a new restaurant or other small business that needs friends and customers. Download a new band. Go to an independent bookstore and buy something from a small press. Go to an open mike. Or see any comedian. Tip your barista or barkeep a little extra.In other words, do all of the cultural and aesthetic things that Trump thinks are worthless. Make a whole big chunk of existence suddenly spike in importance. And then keep doing that, if you can.This is going to be loooooooooooong, tense four years. We elect leaders to take worry and tension OFF of our plates. We have enough of that as it is. But for some reason, we decided to put someone in charge where the everyday weight of keeping the world from cracking apart is COMPLETELY on our shoulders, along with everything else we already have to deal with.So if we’re really going to fight back, and resist, the first thing we have to do — and it’s only a little thing, really, but it’s gotta be everyday — is an ongoing, gentle blowing on the tiny spark of sanity that’s still left, to keep it glowing.We’ve got a President who bellows cold ignorance from dawn to dusk, and he could give a shit if he kills that spark.So keep it lit. And keep things light. And huddle up.This is gonna be bad. So be good.