Category Archives: Personal

Apparently Anger is Not a Strategy

Regular readers may have already read Rebecca Traister’s profile of 2017 HRC. If not, now you know how you’ll spend Memorial Day weekend: mourning the memory of democracy last summer.

Here’s my favorite passage, in which Hillary Rodham Clinton, who doesn’t have time for therapy except for a few sessions with Bill in the 90s, echoes what my therapist recently told me about my own feminist anger:

There are plenty of people who yearned for Clinton to get mad; during the campaign, an imagined litany of Clinton’s fury entitled “Let Me Remind You Fuckers Who I Am” went viral. “Oh, I am [pissed],” she says. But as a woman in public life, “you can’t be angry for yourself. You just can’t. You can be indignant, you can be annoyed, you can be frustrated, but you can’t be angry … I don’t think anger’s a strategy.”

You mean it’s not a strategy for you, I clarify. “For me, yeah.” She pauses. “But I don’t think it’s a good strategy for most people.”

But this was an election that was, in many ways, about anger. And Trump and Sanders capitalized on that.

“Yes.” Clinton nods. “And I beat both of them.”

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They Learn Early

Last night the preschooler told us a complex story about a giant who was carrying a baby. The giant got tired and put the baby down, but the baby still wanted to be carried. So the giant carried the baby longer. That went on for a while until the giant ate the baby. So he could get bigger. And the giant ate more babies. He kept eating babies until he got really, really big. Much bigger than a house.

It’s like the kid reads the news. He’s caught on somehow.

Politics today: compassion compassion compassion until the giant eats you.

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Hot Frigging Chocolate

When our government lays the groundwork for conditions that thoughtful people cogently compare to Nazi Germany and fascist Italy; when our president issues racist orders and statements unrepentantly; when our elected representatives appear to ignore millions of constituents who insist on full rejection of a racist, sexist, sadistic set of know-nothings running our most important federal agencies and a Nazi on the National Security Council is this a waking nightmare or are you just happy to see me; I have but one recommendation:

Put equal amounts of sugar and cocoa powder in a saucepan over medium heat. Dribble in milk (dairy for maximum custardy taste!) and whisk to make a paste. When it’s smoooooove, whisk in more milk until the color looks yum. Heat over medium until it bubbles around the edges, and then keep heating it a bit longer to toast the milk sugars for nutty puddingness.

If you overmilked it and you’re like damn just opening Twitter today requires heroic chocolate this is no time for even an illusion of moderation (Elizabeth Warren, I’m talking to you), just whisk in more cocoa and sugar. Do not fear lumps. They will whisk away. Relish these easily fixable problems.

Ladle some out some to the clammering younglings, sure, but the point of this whole endeavor is to pour vodka into your own cup of hot fucking chocolate. And drink it. Bourbon would probably work too.

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Rationalizing the Future

By numbering these steps to likely self-destruction, I hope to provide a comforting illusion of linearity:

  1. Commit with passion to a dizzying barrage of lies
  2. Undermine, threaten, and ban the press, who may otherwise credibly report on one’s actions
  3. Question the legitimacy of democratic processes
  4. Laugh about regulations and norms that would constrain an executive’s decisions within long-established ethical boundaries
  5. Dare lawmakers to confirm the most racist, sexist, anti-queer, anti-love, anti-voter, anti-truth, anti-science cabinet imaginable
  6. Courageously maintain one’s dedication to lying
  7. Start passing laws and issuing executive orders that will kill people–by taking away our health care, by poisoning our water, by allowing our climate to warm unchecked until it is uninhabitable, by any number of callous, self-aggrandizing, thoughtless potentials
  8. Foment chaos. In one’s daily operations. In health care markets. In politics. In discourse
  9. Mock (and rape and assault) the vulnerable
  10. Maintain and strengthen business and political connections that will operate directly against the interests of the citizens of the United States
  11. Issue gag orders on thousands of employees
  12. Speak only lies.

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