Commentary: Overheard after the elections

The (Tacoma) News TribuneNovember 20, 2012 

They’re back, at their regular corner table, their volume fueled by a combination of caffeine and youthful self-confidence. As such, it is never difficult to eavesdrop on Earnest Guy and Cynical Girl.

Earnest Guy: “I’m so excited about the election. Gay marriage. Legalized marijuana. Barack Obama. Jay Inslee. Almost everyone and everything I voted for won.”

Cynical Girl: “Lucky you. Maybe you should buy some lottery tickets.”

EG: “It wasn’t luck. I’m just right.”

CG: “I forgot. It must be liberating to be right all the time.”

EG: “Oh, it is. Hey, remember when you were all cynical when Obama announced that his position on gay marriage had evolved and that he now supported it?”

CG: “Evolved? I thought he changed his mind.”

EG: “When people move toward my position, they evolve. When they move away from my position, they flip-flop.”

CG: “I’ll try to keep that straight. But yeah, I thought it was a calculated move to save a fledgling re-election campaign.”

EG: “Fledgling? Fancy word. Yes, I recall that. But you think everything a politician does is a calculated move. It’s who you are.”

CG: “Funny thing, though. It really didn’t seem to be an issue in the campaign. Romney barely brought it up once he’d won the nomination.”

EG: “It did one thing, though – and here I am starting to sound like you – it got people like me remotivated. Until then, I figured he was just like all the other politicians who say things to get elected and then say they had to compromise to get things done.”

CG: “Well, compromise is a dirty word.”

EG: “I was worried during the campaign that Romney was going to win. The Denver debate gave me ulcers, and then the polls all seemed to conflict with one another.”

CG: “Polls, polls, polls. I thought you cared about the issues.”

EG: “Sure, the polling issue.”

CG: “Well, regardless of what the polls said, Obama got lucky.”

EG: “Don’t tell me you’re one of those people who blame Hurricane Sandy for Romney’s defeat.”

CG: “Even I’m not that cynical. No, I blame Hurricane Romney for Romney’s defeat. That and Tropical Storm GOP Primaries. He had to move so far to the right to get past Santorum and Gingrich and Perry that it made it impossible to get back to the middle in time for Election Day.”

EG: “Now you’re making me feel sorry for him … almost. My only disappointment was charter schools. I can’t believe state voters would support something that will destroy public schools.”

CG: “Oh, don’t worry. The adults seem to have done a pretty good job of that already. Charter schools won’t destroy or save public schools. The initiative was just a proxy war for the reformers and the school establishment.”

EG: “But the billionaires were trying use their money to force their will on the people.”

CG: “The same billionaires who used their money to pass gay marriage?”

EG: “Quit using facts. They only confuse people. Did you ever think you’d live in a state where gay marriage and pot were legal?”

CG: “I know. Pretty amazing. I guess the voters of the state evolved.”

EG: “The state can balance its budget now by taxing marijuana and florists.”

CG: “Wait, florists?”

EG: “Sure, there’s gonna be a lot more weddings.”

CG: “Maybe.

EG: So what are you doing on Thanksgiving?”

CG: “What do you think I’m doing? I’m working like all the other poor stiffs who need to work retail to pay the bills.”

EG: “Yeah, that’s bad to open stores on Thanksgiving. Why do these stores have to make people work on a holiday? Can’t the Black Friday zombies wait until actual Black Friday?”

CG: “Once Walmart does it, everyone has to do it. And Walmart rarely takes its workers’ well-being into mind if it might conflict with profits.”

EG: “I’ll save you a drumstick.”

CG: “I’m a vegan.”

EG: “OK, I’ll save you a slice of Tofurky.”

CG: “You’re too kind.”

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