I was catching up with a dear friend of mine across the pond in Canada the other day. We reminisced about the time we were living in Malawi (Central Africa) and used to go for long runs along rocky mountain roads and dusty tracks chatting incessantly to take our minds off the pain and strain that jogging brings with it.
She reminded me that I’d infamously taught her how to blow snot balls out of the side of her nose whilst moving merrily along. As most runners can attest, this is a very necessary and serious skill and one that should be taught to every novice jogger right alongside how to tie your Nike laces and deal with stray ankle yapping dogs.
‘Struth. Who’s got time for Kleenex anyway and what do you do with it once you’ve finished doing with it?
As Trudy and I chuckled across the Facebook miles my mouth muttered these words:
SNOTBALLS FOR PRESIDENT!
Which is exactly what we seem to be dealing with these days.
Snot balls. For Presidents.
One the eve of one of the most slanderous and nasty election campaigns the world has ever seen I find myself wondering why I’ve become so embroiled and opinionated about an election that seemingly has nothing to do with me. I am not an American. I am a South African who doesn’t even live in South Africa, but I did live in the States once, have visited the country many times and I’m immensely grateful that it was kind enough to college-educate our two boys and one wife in a mighty fine manner. I love and thank you for that the US of A.
At the same time, South Africa is riding a rough path with our very dis-honourable President of a few years too many trying to cover up and hide his corrupt self along with all his cronies. This man, who presides over a country of nearly 55 million with only a third grade education has managed to either destroy or steal whatever he put his hand to and them some. He’s a mess and sadly, so too is the country.
(So, what’s that saying about people living in glass houses not throwing stones…uhemm, moving right along. )
I’ve never really considered myself politically astute. Or even really very interested. I find it hard enough to run my own life, never mind any body else’s. As long as my status quo is ok and unaffected, politics is something that other people do and get hot under the collar about somehow side stepping fairness and liberty for all. Sure, I can hold my own in a political conversation – just as I can hold my own in one about flower arranging, the trend towards moral education or the price and privilege of eating Casu marzu – a Sardinian cheese that contains live maggots able to jump up to five inches into the air. And believe me I can negotiate my way through a dozen cupcakes and whether it’s a good idea or not to fight over a play truck parked near the building blocks in my classroom. I’m never short of a word, but usually my words are found elsewhere and not in the political arena.
That was until this year. And these elections. THESE elections.
I’ve read the reviews and listened to the debates. I’ve talked with my American friends from both sides and have often found myself lost in articles about Trump, his wife and children and the shenanigans they’ve got up to pre-election along with their father’s infamous past. Really… Yes really. I’ve marvelled at Donald’s guts and Hillary’s fortitude while cringing at the lipstick on her teeth during one of the debates. And why? I really don’t know. Maybe because its all been so debauched and uncivilised and just so un-American. Maybe because the world has become such a small space and what matters there matters here too but mostly because I’m worried about our hard earned dollars stockpiled for retirement. What’s going to happen to the Dow Jones, people? Only time will tell.
So on the eve or what must be one of the most important days in world history, to my family and friends and all the peoples of the United States of America I say this: whether you are ecstatic or devastated at the end of the vote tomorrow, whether your democratically elected president is a snot ball or a champion of change and hope, we are rooting for you because the world needs a strong America. We need you to win. And I trust that your faith in goodness and grace will prevail no matter what.
Please… go and vote well and in the meantime
God Bless America,
Land that I love
Stand beside Her
And guide her
Through the night
With a light from above.