2020 Election

Sometimes It Gets Overwhelming

The original idea was to cover the Democratic and the Republican National Conventions. And all of Trump’s “events.” And all of the Biden and Harris events. Because I am tough, goddammit. I can totally handle all of the political shenaniganry. No sweat! Like water off a tarp, or however the saying goes. I mean, I managed to do that in 2016, right? Why should now be any different?

On Monday, I live tweeted both of Trump’s “events” (he called them “friendly protests.” Ew) and those two events kicked my soul’s ass. I do not remember the last time I felt that world-weary and tired and defeated. Even my bone marrow felt like it was giving up. It felt like I was filling up with The Ooze from Fern Gully. 

It was dark enough in here that I couldn’t bring myself to watch the first night of the Democratic National Convention, and on Tuesday I took most of the day off from the internet. And people. I took a lot of naps, I watched a lot of NCIS (shut up, it’s soothing). I played silly games on my phone and wrestled with Poppy. I felt better in the evening, but not enough to watch the second night of the convention.

Yesterday, I was scrolling through social media, checking out the reviews of the first two nights of conventioning. Everybody loved Michelle Obama’s speech. Some people were put off by what they thought was an overly schmaltzy approach in the new format. Others loved the new format and said they hoped we never go back to the old way. Pretty predictable stuff, right?

What I didn’t predict was just how dang annoyed I’d feel as I scrolled. Over and over again I saw tweets whose message was something along the lines of “THE DNC LET SOMEONE I DON’T LIKE SAY WORDS. THEY SUCK. THEY ARE THE ENEMY OF EVERYTHING AND MUST BE DESTROYED. I’M NEVER VOTING AGAIN UNLESS THEY CATER ONLY TO MY EXACT WISHES.”

Obviously, I haven’t seen anything that literally said that exact message. I want to be clear about that. But the sentiment was there, in tweet after tweet after tweet after Facebook post after Facebook post after Facebook post. 

Y’all, I am so flippin’ sick of this kind of BS. THIS BS is one of the reasons our country is in this mess in the first place. And I’m reaching the point where I do not trust myself not to go full SNARKE SMASH on every person I see posting it…at least not right now. 

Let me be clear: All of us have the right to post whatever we want (mostly). I would never tell someone what they are “allowed” to post about. 

But right now? I do not have the patience or the filter to not excoriate every person in my feed (some of whom I love dearly!) who writes posts like that. 

SO. I’m stepping back. I didn’t watch the convention last night and I probably won’t watch tonight. I’m not going to watch the Republican Convention next week and will be taking a huge step back from social media until it is over. I am angry and exhausted and just…cannot with all of this right now.

I’m hoping that the time away will help me rest and reboot so that I’ll be ready to take on the next two months with the energy it will require. I’m hoping to figure out what kind of approach to take to, well, everything that will let me keep posting without filling me up with The Ooze(tm).

Of course, I’m not PLANNING anything. We all know how that turns out in 2020. 

Stay tuned! 

Plans are for Other People

I had a plan. I was going to go to bed at a reasonable time, get a good night’s sleep, get up at a normal hour, eat a real food for breakfast and then get some paying work done before my day turned into Politicalpalooza. 

It was a good plan and I liked it a lot.

I know, I know: human plans, deities laugh. 

Well in this case, the deities decided to wage their revenge via my bladder, which didn’t let me get more than about thirty minutes of sleep at a time before deciding it had to be relieved RIGHT NOW IMMEDIATELY OR YOU WILL BE DOING EMBARASSING LAUNDRY IN THE MIDDLE OF THE NIGHT. It finally decided to let me get some real sleep sometime around 4 AM. 

My alarm went off at 9. 

That was when I was supposed to get up and go for a walk before making a real food for breakfast.

Instead I accidentally (shut up) turned off my alarm instead of hitting snooze and fell back to sleep until 11. Then I got up, drank some soda, chatted with one of my housemates for a bit and sat down at my computer in my pajamas to cover the first Trump rally of the day.

In all honesty, I missed the first little bit of Trump’s first rally…er…”event at which he delivered remarks.” He started before his scheduled starting time and then railed for a while about how much he rocks and how much Joe Biden sucks with some racist garnish thrown in there for funsies. 

About an hour after that first “event” was done, Trump began another and y’all. There aren’t enough evens to can’t. I honestly couldn’t tell you what was going on during that event. Trump seemed cracked out of his mind—he was sweaty, rambling, jumping from topic to topic sometimes in mid-sentence and kept trying to joke with “Scott.” He shouted about how the Governor of Virginia wants to kill newborn babies and praised Putin and Erdogan for being very smart and talented chess players. 

I have seen plenty of Trump speeches where he veers off his teleprompted course, but this was something else. Whatever they gave him on Air Force One between events to keep his energy levels up? They gave him way WAY too much.

Now that those events are over for the day, I should be covering the first night of the Democratic National Convention. I want to watch speeches composed of complete sentences and coherent thoughts and hope instead of fear and truth instead of lies. I want serious people who actually know how the law works to tell me how we’re going to fix this mess we’re in and be able to trust that they believe what they are saying. 

But y’all. I am so tired. I am so so tired. 

And I’m not just tired because of a day filled with Trump buffoonery and too little sleep and not a lot of real food. I’m tired in my bones. I am existentially and spiritually tired. My soul feels weary and even though I know I will keep fighting the fight tomorrow, tonight I just…can’t. 

I’ll catch up on the speeches later. I especially want to see Michelle Obama speak. But right now, there is a cat and a couch and snacks that are calling my name. And even though I feel really guilty about missing tonight’s festivities, I’m just going to take some time to chill the eff out. 

Here’s a link to my tweet thread for the first Trump “event.”

Here’s a link to my tweet thread for the second Trump “event.”

Joe has made his decision!

What it is is anybody’s guess.

So. Trump is scheduled to do a press briefing at 5:30 (EST) today. Joe Biden has reportedly made his decision about his VP and that announcement could drop at literally any second. 

If Biden really wants to troll Trump, he should wait until the moment Trump begins the briefing. Any network that is still airing that thing live will cut away (okay, maybe not FOX). The WH Press Corps will get the announcement notification on their phones, guaranteeing that it will be the first thing they ask about. Trump will have had no time to prep.

We all know that the worst thing for Trump is for the public to witness him trying to process information in real time. This would force that out and into the open…though I would feel really bad for whichever reporter asks the question. They are going to be on the receiving end of a Trump Meltdown(tm) and those are never fun. 

Anyway, this is going to be a long LONG afternoon and evening. May the force be with you all.

It’s 2016 All over Again but It Doesn’t Have to Be

Photo description: Trump on a lot of television screens
Image source: Reuters/Jim Urquhart

“It’s 2016 all over again,” a friend tweeted this morning. He was talking about how CNN made a point of carrying Trump’s Big Racist Bullshit-stravaganza Campaign Rally on Saturday, but hasn’t bothered to mention more than a passing acknowledgement of the events Biden has been holding. Even the virtual event he did with former President Obama got very little play.

My friend is right, of course. The same thing happened four years ago—all the major networks and news outlets were falling all over themselves to cover every single word that sputtered out of ToxicOrange’s McNugget hole. Meanwhile, even the best attended events held by Hillary Clinton were mentioned mostly in passing. Maybe, if she was lucky and it was an otherwise slow news day, the anchors would tune into the rallies for a few minutes before going back to “but her emails-ing.” 

Honestly, I wasn’t that much better. I spent FAR more time covering Trump’s events than I did talking or blogging about Clinton’s. I own that. I was incredibly naive to think that simply pointing Trump’s nonsense—even as I was doing my best to explain why it was nonsense—was enough. In retrospect I should have spent just as much time talking about Clinton’s ideas and policies, how they would work and why they were better. 

What makes me angriest about that is that I knew better. It isn’t enough to talk about what you’re against, you need to talk about what you’re for. Punk Rock is Bullshit, and all that. 

This time, I want to do better. I’m not sure what that will really look like just yet, but I want to start by calling your attention to this Washington Post article about the event the Biden campaign held today. It’s a short read and it definitely gave me some stuff to think about.