I never was much of a Seinfeld fan. A lot of people were devoted to the show, I know that, but I found it just a little too precious and self-absorbed, the theatrical equivalent of facing mirrors. Besides, it was such a fad that it virtually guaranteed my disinterest.
I do, however, get the jokes.
The current occupant of the Oval Office took to the podium yesterday, mumbling and shifting blame about an economic and cultural clusterfuck of his own creation. This morning The Wall Street Journal responded with an editorial entitled, “President Costanza Takes On Inflation.”
On one hand that’s the perfect characterization of the current regime’s policies — like the bumbling, neurotic George, reliably doing the exact opposite of what works. But the cultural metaphor holds up only if we attribute this mess solely to incompetence.
I don’t subscribe to that analysis. I believe it’s intentional.
This isn’t a failure of progressive policy — it’s a smashing [sic] success. Daffy & The Cabal have purposely tanked the economy, refused to stop sabotaging the supply chain, created energy dependency, sowed antagonism and attacked traditions. It’s a textbook execution of progressivism, not inept but diabolical.
Just for a chuckle, I want to go back to something the current occupant of the Oval Office said the day he was installed:
“Today, on this January day, my whole soul is in this: Bringing America together. Uniting our people. And uniting our nation.”
His idea of “unity” — which is an illusion anyway, but whatever — yesterday took the form of invoking “MAGA” during his remarks. He said it five times, thrice saying “ultra-MAGA.”
It wasn’t meant to unify. As he did last week — “This MAGA crowd is really the most extreme political organization that’s existed in American history” — he leveled it as an insult, a bitter epithet.
What’s more, it wasn’t intended to persuade the object of the slur — the singular goal, clearly, was to inspire hatred of this ultra-MAGA crowd.
It’s been interesting over the last half-dozen years to see what true Americans have done with digs like this. When The Inevitable Woman smeared us as “deplorables,” to cite the obvious example, we started calling ourselves “Deplorables.”
I predict that “Ultra-MAGA” will become the next badge of honor.
It also occurs to me that our Founders would approve. After all, “Yankee Doodle” was written 20 years before the Revolution and sung by the British to mock colonial soldiers. Americans embraced it, turning “Yankee Doodle Dandy” into an expression of defiance.
It became a marching tune for the Continental Army. And we kicked those Brits’ arrogant asses.
Ultra-MAGA, huh? Bitch, please.
It’s been a frustrating couple of weeks. I’ve taken it easy — as in doing pretty much nothing — to give my back muscles rest and time to mend. Yesterday I felt like maybe I’d turned another corner, so this morning I decided to engage in actual exertion.
I mowed the lawn.
Temps climbed past 90°F here by mid-afternoon, so I’m glad I knocked it out by 1pm. And while it wasn’t a painless exercise, it’s done — both the chore itself and my re-entry into the realm of normal human activity. We’ll see how quickly I can bounce back from the effort.
One year ago today: This was an easy day of packing and checking and prepping to move. We’d been in Missouri for ten days, camped in four different places, and it was time to head down the road.
There’s a phrase I learned when I did est back in the ’80s — “completing a relationship.” Over the years it became part of my life as well as my lexicon, useful and even essential in processing the people and passions and places that enter, linger and leave over time.
I’m sure the term sounds a little squishy, typical encounter-group stuff (probably because it is), but we all do it. If you don’t like the word “completing,” you can think of it as “making peace.”
It’s easier (if not always easy) to complete an interpersonal relationship while the other party is around. Completion isn’t always an end, though it can be. For me it’s about finding the right place for a person or thing and then moving forward.
I’ve completed relationships with friends before they (or I) moved away. I completed relationships with my parents after they died and with my ex-wife after a contentious divorce. I found myself having to complete a decades-long relationship with riding motorcycles when I became physically unable to continue.
Now, today, I’d like to confirm that my relationship with Montana is complete.
After so many years of longing to return, last August I made it back to The Big Sky. I spent 30 glorious days there, sharing every moment with Deb.
In the months that followed, surrounded by other changes in my life, I sought to put Montana in its proper place. I acknowledged that I may never see those prairies and mountains again — but I have seen them, and I’m good with that.
As much as I love the place, it’s not where I belong. Saying that out loud completes the relationship.
I’ll always remember and often I’ll reminisce, but I’ll do so at peace with my memories. Here’s a handful to close today’s post.
Take care of yourselves, Patriots. Stay calm. Stay sharp. Stay free.