Confronting the Trump Quandary:
First the Chicken? Or the Egg?
This is Cat.
I don’t want to be an alarmist (Isn't that why we have a president?).
But Phoebe has been acting kind of goofy.
She's really stressed; keeps mumbling about the “chicken and the egg;” or the “egg and the chicken.”
All day, she paces back and forth, hardly notices the Maillady; stares out the window of the sun porch, ignoring the old people with their walkers and canes outside, an affront that usually has her barking her small-brain dog head off and setting off a chain-reaction of dog alarms all over the neighborhood.
Now it’s "the chicken or the egg.” Or "the egg or the chicken.”
SO TODAY, I actually gave up part of my morning nap and came downstairs to look for her. She was curled up, fetal style under the dining room table, and she barely raised a gorgeous eyelash when I asked her what was the matter.
I also pointed out that she’s been missing-in-action on the Blog. It’s not like there hasn’t been anything to write about: the “Obama bugged me” business; the “new” immigrant travel ban; the cheaper-and-better-healthcare rollout. And not word one from Ms. KnowItAll.
“It’s getting too confusing, Cat,” she told me. “Is it Trump? Or is it the people who voted for Trump?”
“I mean, do Trump’s voters really want a liar as the leader of the Free World?” she said. “Or is Trump some kind of hypnotic fabulist that people can’t help but listen to and follow?”
WHEN Phoebe gets into these kinds of funks, I try, just like any highly trained psychotherapist, to let her talk, which not only helps her sort things out in her own unique way, but also gives me a chance for some extra shuteye.
But I felt that I had to provide some gentle guidance, nudging her into a productive course of self-discovery, while nurturing her self-confidence and sense of trust that she’s in a safe space:
“Listen, you witless, spoiled little Muttface, quit your mooning and self-pity, and get a grip. Scram. Out from under the table. Up on your own four feet! Get back to you window. Bark. Howl. Growl. And the next time the front door opens, get out of here and find something to kill. Be a Real Dog!”
Phoebe simply shrunk more tightly into her fetus-curl.
“Do Trump voters want to be lied to? Every Single Day? Do they really hate immigrants? Do they want kids torn from their parents’ arms? Do they want the Hounds of Hell set loose on Jewish cemeteries, schools and community centers? Do they want dirtier air, filthier water, stupider students, poorer poor people, sicker sick people, more homeless people?”
“So, Cat, I’m wondering if it’s my fault. Maybe I’m just not thinking clearly. Maybe I should be asking the Big Questions. And once I’ve answered those, I’ll be able to understand the Trump Thing.”
“The Big Questions?” I asked.
“Yeah, like: What is good and evil? What is Newton’s Third Law? Life on other planets. The Virgin Birth? Verizon or Sprint? And the Big One: Which came first: the chicken or the egg?”
"LET'S JUST take these one at a time,” I said in my most Freudian purr.
“Okay,” Phoebe said.
“Chickens hatch from eggs. So you have to have an egg before you have a chicken. But to get an egg, you have to have a chicken to make the egg. So there you have it.”
“Meaning?” Phoebe asked.
“Meaning that the chicken came first,” I said.
“Cat, you are brilliant! Thank you so much. I feel so relieved. Now I can get back to barking at the lame, the halt and the Maillady,” Phoebe said, scrambling out from under the table and taking up her perch at the sun porch windows.
“Just one more question,” Phoebe said.
“Shoot,” I said.
“Is Trump the chicken... ?”
Before she could finish, I had already disappeared up the front stairs to my hideout on the second floor, an imperceptible lump under a down quilt.