There’s a woman sitting across from me. She has shoulder length gray hair and black framed glasses. She is white and wears what I would call a “small puffer” Patagonia vest.
The news just came out about the Mueller report. No collusion, etc. She aggressively eats a bagel with lox and onions, pausing every few bites to wipe the cream cheese from around her month and take a swig of OJ as if it were whiskey.
She talks to her newspaper, “How could they print this?” and “This is a lie!” Then she angrily takes a bite.
I can tell she wants me to respond. She wants to start a conversation so we can both say, “This isn’t my fault!” And if I felt like it, I could share a moment of frustration. But I don’t think Robert Mueller was ever the one who was going to take down Donald Trump.
The liberals were hoping for a deus ex machina. That is never a way to live. Say you’re behind on your rent and keep digging yourself into a bigger and bigger hole. You would never say, “Well, maybe the city will come in and shut down the building for asbestos, and then I can sue the owners and get money for exposure to a toxin and then I won’t have to deal with my late rent!” That would be a ridiculous, and if you told anyone that that was your plan, they’d laugh at you.
With the nominations coming up, I hear a lot of female clients I train say that we need a white man candidate to defeat Trump. Before the report was released, I heard a lot of people say that the Mueller Report would right every wrong. To me, both are versions of a white knight. But haven’t we been working to overturn the damsel in distress narrative? I don’t think any white man is going to swoop in to save anyone. Even Trump, a white knight to some, has failed the people who elected him. Red or blue, they aren’t solving our discomfort for us.
Most of my coworkers, unless they are gay, don’t vote. They don’t have health insurance, but they forget to vote. They don’t perceive government as affecting their lives. And maybe it doesn’t today: maybe it is all just hot air. For their sake, I never hope that we get to the place where it does.
The shop plays John Mayer underneath this woman’s addled exclamations. We all ignore her. No one wants to talk. She left half her bagel behind, piled on top of the trash of her tray and napkins, even though the garbage was half an arm length from where we sat. I guess she wanted someone to clean up after her.