On election day, I went to bed after my personal news black-out. I awoke too early at 4:00 am, gave up trying to go back to sleep, and turned on the radio to hear about the depressing disaster. NPR was on, and they were doing their usual multicultural report, interviewing an illegal alien or some such about how they “felt” about the election. I was able to infer some disturbance in the narrative, but it would take a few minutes to glean what it was from NPR. So I switched to KGO, where I heard a talk show host and pillow spokesperson named Chip in full liberal gloat and end-zone dance about how Republicans were now in the dustbin of history. But I was soon able to determine that this was a rebroadcast from election day, prior to any vote counting. I switched to KCBS, and immediately was informed that Trump had won, and Republicans held both the Senate And the House. Oh My! I was pleasantly surprised, to put it mildly.
The train ride to San Francisco was very somber, as were the downtown streets. I took the elevator up the high-rise with my boss and two colleagues who immediately starting talking about the results. The boss demanded that they shut up, he did not want to hear any whining. But when out of earshot, the day was full of whining and bewilderment from the lawyers I work with, with much vulgar contempt for Trump voters. Although I am known to be more conservative than the local average, nobody assumed I was a Trump supporter and, needing to earn a living, I kept my head down and did not say much.
I went out for lunch, and was astonished to see high schoolers marching under Mexican Flags, and “Pride” Flags on Market Street. In the actual street! My first thought was that this is no place for children, as Market Street has many bums urinating and young ladies openly injecting drugs into their arms. Who let them out of school? If they are counted as absent that day, it is very costly for the school, but that depends on how they “count”.
At the end of the day, I took the elevator down with silent strangers. There were hipsters, young people lucky enough to be employed in the new information (advertising?) economy, the new “masters of the universe”, able to afford San Francisco and things. At the last moment, a guy looking like Pajama Boy, but dressed for work in skin tight pants, cool shoes, untucked shirt and full brimmed hat, announced, “dark times ahead”. Such is the wisdom of children. I have a feeling I will never forget that day.
It has gotten worse. My colleagues, lawyers all, informed and smart and good people almost all (I know, cue the guffaws) are reporting “massive voter suppression” in 33 states. Massive vote tampering, etc. (Fake news might actually be a real problem). A very handsome, elegant, black man with an impeccable British accent is reporting hostile glares and Uber discrimination on the streets of San Francisco! An Indian women is afraid of internment camps and trying to come up with an escape plan. The worst was a lawyer reporting to our boss that he had purchased a gun “to protect his minority friends”. Is this acceptable workplace behavior? Instead of firing him, the boss, a minority, advised him to “keep on his meds”.
I live in a true alternative universe. It is starting to wear me down.