Tuesday, December 27, 2016

A-List Bitches on Diets

Rakelle began her Xmas break a week early, and then returned to school a week late because she had so much to get done. The lip-plumping might have been the most painful of the several procedures, but took only half an hour, whereas the nose job and breast augmentation, for both of which she was anesthetised into unconsciousness, involved extended recovery periods, and her nose guy wouldn’t do her until at least a week after her boobs.

Pater, which she'd taken to calling him because she knew how much he loved her calling him Daddy, had taken some convincing. He said he was saddened that Rakelle, so beautiful to him, would think herself so in need of revision. Rakelle rolled her eyes and said, in that tone of hers, that she was ecstatic that Pater thought her so attractive, but what the boys at her school thought actually mattered just that wee bit more. She was pretty sure that the money was at least as big a concern for him as her self-esteem. She eventually got her way by saying that if she couldn’t get the work she wanted  during her Xmas break, maybe she’d spend the whole of it with her mom, from whom Pater had been bitterly divorced since Rakelle was 11. Hearing that, David hung up on her, probably in angry tears, but she was pretty sure he’d call back within 20 minutes to apologise. He called back in 12, pretending he’d earlier lost his connection. The first words out of his mouth were that he’d scheduled an appointment for Rakelle with the guy who’d done his secretary’s boobs.

Her first morning back at school, Rakelle felt that the money could hardly have been better spent. Between History to Algebra, she was aware of half a dozen guys turning to  stare at her, and two of them —  Jared Pankow and Brendan Meisel were among the hottest seniors at Laurelmont. Even Jared’s girlfriend — that bitch Dominique Noriega, the queen of a circle into which the unimproved Rakelle couldn’t have entered with the Ferguson, Missouri, SWAT team clearing the way— noticed, and how sweet was that? In Algebra, Mr. Hinshaw did a double-take when she walked in (both Daddy and Dr. Rosenthal had tried to talk her out of D-cups, but she’d stuck to her guns), which was totally gross, but so did Frazier Hunnicutt, who was only a few links down the food chain from Jared Pankow and Brendan Meisel.

That bitch Dominque Noriega had never acknowledged Rakelle’s presence in any way, not even when they’d sat in adjacent seats in homeroom in 9th grade, but here she was, at lunchtime, seeking Rakelle out and asking if Rakelle would like to eat (or, in several cases, not eat (dieting!)) with her and her home girls. There were nine black and mixed-race kids in the whole school, and none of the three girls was in Dominique’s circle, so Rakelle thought home girls was pretty pretentious, but she wasn’t going to look a gift horse in the mouth. She said, “Why not?” totally nonchalantly, and followed Dominique to the so-called A-list table in the cafeteria, but had hardly gotten her napkin on her lap before Whisper Thompson, who was generally seen as Dominique’s, like, enforcer, tapped her really hard on the shoulder and said, “Check this out, sweetie-pie. You’re having bigger boobs and lips might impress the Jerkoff Brigade, but it don’t impress us at all, and if we see Jared or Brendan or any of them talking to you, we’re going to cut your fucking tongue out with one of these [a white plastic knife] and strangle you with it. You understand?” Before Jakelle could answer, Whisper had poured half her little carton of sugar-free lemonade all over Rakelle’s macaroni and cheese, which wasn’t, like, catastrophic because Rakelle wasn’t about to eat anything cheesy in front of A-list bitches on diets.

Sunday, December 25, 2016

A (Sarcasm- and Acrimony-Free) Xmas Day Open Letter to President-Elect Trump

Something like 97 percent of relevant experts have come to agree that human-induced climate change seriously threatens everyone on the planet. Your apparently believing those experts to be dupes of the Chinese might not be too dangerous for you and your four older children, who are likely to have left the planet before it becomes uninhabitable, but what of your little boy, and of your grandchildren? It may be that, in middle age, they’ll have remained rich enough to insulate themselves from the ravages of climate change, but what if the planet’s such a mess by then that money has ceased to have any value, and ordinary people are desperate to get their own children access to water, for instance?  You might believe Trump Tower, or wherever else Barron and the grandkids may have barricaded themselves, will be impregnable. Well, Louis XVI thought the same of Paris’s Bastille. The mightiest empires in human history have all collapsed in time.
Let’s say, just for the sake of argument, that there’s a very good chance of all those scientists being mistaken. Let’s say, in fact, that there’s only one chance in 20 that they’re right. Don’t ask me to believe, though, unless they’re fleeing modern-day equivalents of the Bastille-stormers, that you’d put Barron or any of the grandkids on a plane with a 1-in 20 chance of crashing. What father or grandfather could be that depraved?

There's no  lasting upside to being the president under whose stewardship environmental deterioration accelerated, Mr. Trump. History, if there’s anyone left to study it, won’t remember you fondly.

How about if, while at the very least honouring every commitment the USA has made to impeding climate change, your presidency is that during which American medical researchers discover cures for cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, and many other diseases? As one now considering his place in history, do you not see medical research as having infinitely greater investment potential than more nuclear weaponry?  Surely you’d rather be remembered as the president under whom fearsome diseases were finally conquered than the one who started the war that really did end all wars — and humanity, in the bargain.

Be assured I can understand the appeal of being The Man Who Blew Up the World, but there’s a very significant downside: If humanity is wiped out, who’ll be left to marvel at your accomplishment?

You might be thinking that altruism doesn’t sound like much fun. But consider that during the presidential campaign, you professed great contempt for Sen. Ted Cruz. Isn’t now, with his being poised to try to rescind the rights of LGBT Americans, a good time to rekindle that contempt? You’re a worldly New Yorker, and know from experience that LGBT people aren’t the monsters Lyin’ Ted tries to make them out to be. In defending marriage equality, for instance, you’ll enjoy the twin pleasures of making him your bitch again and doing something (politically) brave and noble for which enlightened persons all over the world will applaud you.

The where’s-them-Doritos-at? types are likely to think you’ve sold them out by doing The Right Thing, and will flood the social media with subliterate memes calling you every name in the book — most of them misspelled. But Barack Obama was able to withstand that —with remarkable dignity — for eight years. Do you really want to be seen as less a man than Mr. Obama?

You are very rich, and must be deeply gratified by how many Americans believe your wealth to be a function of your brilliance. As you will almost certainly never be the richest man in the world — at the moment I write this, you’re not even in the Top 300, and would have to increase your wealth six-fold even to make the Top 20 — using the presidency to try to play catch-up will be an awful waste of a remarkable opportunity money  (at least technically) can’t buy. In 150 years,  are children going to be told of the greatness of such of your fellow billionaires as Warren Buffett and Nike’s Phil Knight? Almost certainly not. Surely you must find enticing the thought of 22nd-century school kids learning that you were one of America’s most remarkable presidents, one who took office amid unprecedented scepticism, fear, and animosity, but confounded the naysayers with leadership that benefitted not only your own country, but all of humanity. 

What would Phil Knight pay for the shot at immortality that’s in your grasp?