The Darkest Hour

As I wrote I would in my last missive, I did not follow the election coverage last night. Perhaps prophetically, I did not spend the night watching the new “Star Trek” but sitting in a hospital room with my sick mother.

So it was that I awoke this morning, turned on my phone…and found out from NPR that Donald Trump will be our next president.

I am a writer, but I will here freely admit that my skills with words escape me when it comes to expressing my shock, horror, and frankly, disgust, at this outcome. I can, perhaps, take solace in the fact that my state defied the tide of madness and did not support Trump. I can even take some comfort in remembering that I refused to buy into his con.

But that will not change the outcome of the election.

I have few observations to make at this point, but I hope they are on-point:

To those of my friends and family who felt they could not vote for either major party candidate because it violated their principles: This is what your ‘principles’ have bought you. May you be happy with it.

To the fewer people I know who openly embraced the phenomena that is Donald Trump: Remember the old Chinese proverb-”Be careful what you wish for, because you just might get it.”

Finally, to those who, like me, are still sitting in stunned shock, I offer this: The darkest hour is upon us, the hour when all that is good, right and just hang in the balance. Now is not the time for resignation. Now is not the time for grumbled acceptance. Now is the time to stand by what you believe, what decent people all across this nation still believe, and resist.

“Do not go gentle into that good night,
Old age should burn and rave at close of day;
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Though wise men at their end know dark is right,
Because their words had forked no lightning they
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Good men, the last wave by, crying how bright
Their frail deeds might have danced in a green bay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Wild men who caught and sang the sun in flight,
And learn, too late, they grieved it on its way,
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Grave men, near death, who see with blinding sight
Blind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.”

(Dylan Thomas)

Surviving “The Day”

Okay, quick show of hands: How many people are more than ready for the election to be over?

Yes, I know, another silly rhetorical question, because I suspect everyone in America is ready for this election to be over.

Sadly, as of this point, we still have the rest of today, the whole weekend, plus Monday and Tuesday we still have to get through. So, more commercials, more inane ‘news’ coverage, more chances to get a ‘robo-call’ from some candidate and/or party…feel free to scream “AARRRGGGHHHH!” any time you want to.

I don’t know about you, but for me, the worst day of them all is going to be Election Day. The attack ads will be coming fast-and-furious, the chances of getting one of those calls will increase exponentially, and worst of all, once it hits around 7 PM local, the only thing you’re going to see on TV is election ‘coverage’. Yeah, that’s right, three-or-more hours worth of talking heads trying to fill the time with supposedly informed discussions of the latest change of a dozen votes.

So how do you survive it?

For me, the night of Election Day is movie night. This year, I’m in luck: the latest of the new “Star Trek” movies came out just last week on DVD, and seeing as how I didn’t see it when it was in the theaters, I’ve got something to keep me occupied for a couple of hours. I’ll find out on the 9th how things turned out, hopefully the way I hope they will, but in any case, soon enough.