I have always joked that perhaps I was never meant to be born an American; that my sense of humour was a little bit too dry and sarcastic; that I have always enjoyed a nice cup of tea a bit more than the average American. I have not, however, usually found myself ashamed of being an American. And then came the first Tuesday after the first Monday of November 2016.
On that day We, The People, of the United States elected Donald Trump as President. I cast my vote, not for Trump, but even so in the end Trump won. Hillary Clinton had the popular vote, but not the necessary 270 votes in the Electoral College. So, it is what it is, and I am not writing to talk about how the Trump campaign succeeded or how the Clinton campaign failed, or even how third-party candidates are barely spoken about.
What shames me, what leaves me feeling embarrassed to be an American right now is that, although technically Clinton won the popular vote, and therefore that means that a majority of Americans did not vote for Donald Trump, it was a very narrow margin with which she won that popular vote. And that means, nearly half of my fellow Americans supported a racist. A bigot. A misogynist.
I had thought that it couldn’t possibly be quite so many as all that. Surely, not as many of half of us could find enough political worthiness in Donald Trump to excuse his shortcomings as a person. And yet, half of us did.
I am not saying that Clinton is a shining example of all that a human being should be. Hell, at one point prior to the results of the Election, I quipped that I had cast my vote for Cthulhu, because why should I vote for a lesser evil, after all? But I had thought that a lot more of us were better than this. Better than to cast our votes for someone who would say that he could shoot someone and it wouldn’t cost him voters. Better than to cast our votes for someone who would speak so shamefully of women, and excuse it as “locker-room talk”. Better than to cast our votes for Donald Trump. Clearly, I was wrong because just near half of us did exactly that.
America, I really hope you can get your shit together by 2020, because honestly, I am ashamed of you.
Last night, for the first time in about two weeks (seriously, it’s a shame we Americans don’t use the term “fortnight”) I was finally able to sleep mostly straight through the night. I’d been trying to go to bed at my normal time each night, but at best I’d doze off and wake up anxious an hour or two later, unable to get back to sleep.
I really don’t recommend trying to function this way.
This morning, though, I feel rested. Alert. My head isn’t foggy, my limbs aren’t heavy, and my heart doesn’t feel like it’s been working overtime. It’s lovely. It’s amazing what a little sleep can do, and how little you appreciate what it does when you’re doing it normally.
Since I’m feeling so good, hopefully I can knock out some things on my ever-growing to-do list! Keeping busy may have the added bonus of providing me with a solid reason to avoid a certain friend of mine, as well.
I must be doing something really wrong, because it seems as if it’s just one thing after another with my friends, lately. Surely the common denominator is just me, when all of it seems to be going wrong at once?
A few days ago, a certain friend of mine asked me for a favour. It was an odd favour, to be sure, but odd doesn’t necessarily mean bad, and it seemed innocent enough. At least it did until the following day when he confessed something that, to me, seems directly connected to the favour he asked for, even though he swears it isn’t. The confession caused the favour he asked for to seem inappropriate, even disturbing and downright creepy. Now I feel sort of used… and manipulated. And I’m finding I really don’t want to speak to said friend.
Ooh, could I be more vague? The whole thing is so weird that I feel awkward and embarrassed just by nature of it having happened to me.
Again, though, all these things going wrong with friends all at once, surely I’m somehow the problem. The only thing they’ve had in common is me.
Some little punk decided that it would be fun to mark up the front of my house with “UK13”.
I’ve Googled. I’ve asked around. I’ve no idea what this “UK13” signifies. The little vandal is remarkably silent on the subject.
The neighbours caught him at his little bit of mischief just as he finished. Being that my landlord’s house is just on the other side of mine, my neighbour all but dragged him by his oversized ear straight there. He won’t explain what “UK13” is, but he’d apparently rather spend some of his free time trying to scrub it off the front of my house than have to pay restitution. The landlord thinks a toothbrush might be an appropriate tool for this job. We’ll see how that goes.
Why couldn’t I have been vandalised by someone with some artistic talent, though? I mean, really.
I don’t know what’s wrong with me lately, but I’m going on my third night of not being able to sleep.
I take that back, I know what some of it is, or rather was, but tonight should have been just fine. The alarms are about to start sounding, though, and here I am, still wide awake.
I hate nights like this so much, because I really am absolutely exhausted, but whenever I lay down to try to sleep, it just won’t come.
I’m so jealous of Alex right now, even though he’s only got about 6 minutes before his alarm goes off. Well, that first alarm, anyhow.
At least I’ve been somewhat productive.
A friend of mine challenged me to write my autobiography “so far”, so I’ve done a little of that. I’m not sure exactly why she wants this done, but, she’s been pestering me to do it for some time. At the moment, there’s 6,000+ words and I’ve just barely covered graduating.
I should probably take a scalpel to it, and cut out more than a few of those words.
On the other hand, I’m not so sure anyone, including the friend who challenged me to do this, will ever lay eyes on it. (Hi, Maria, if you’re reading this). I’ve tossed the draft into the trash more than once as it is. 6,000+ words, though. What a waste.
To be honest, I’ve not enjoyed revisiting some of those moments in my life.
I didn’t make friends easily as a child. I was too shy, and we moved an awful lot. I was 7 years old before I had a real friend, and I’m not that sure that it counts as “making a friend” when you’re technically related to the person. Of course, that doesn’t make her less of a friend, it’s just, you know… I’m not sure I so much “made a friend” as I happened into one by virtue of being a part of her family.
I lost her when we were nearly 9, though. It’s quite a long story, but the gist of it is that the chicken pox can be deadly, if you haven’t much of an immune system. I still miss her, so many years later, and I wonder what kind of person she would have grown up to be.
And this is what happens when I am tired but can not sleep: I babble.