The presence of Donald Trump on the national scene has created such havoc among my friends (and I confess, in me, too) that I went out and invested in beefing up my stabilizer.
The stabilizer is a piece of anatomy I previously never knew existed. I'm not sure where it is located (I'd need an MRI for that) but I know it is there working on the emotions because, since Trump, mine has been going up and down like a yo-yo.
As Trump, himself, would tweet: "Not Nice!"
This is how I found out about the stabilizer. Just prior to Election Day, my neighbor Elaine came over to watch a movie with a few others and just happened to reveal that she agreed with Trump on immigration. Not only! She ranted about immigrants. We had been standing in the hallway when she turned on me with this rant, whereupon my stabilizer conked out. I turned her by the shoulders, pointed to the door, opened it, gave a helpful push, and even slammed the door after her.
I was so stunned at my behavior, which seemed to me to come out of nowhere, that I went to the Healthy Vitamin Store and sought the manager's advice. He told me about the stabilizer and sold me an expensive supply of pills that promises to re-energize it. Until Elaine, I had not even realized I have had one. Who knew? I wasn't all that bothered by her because I knew this country could never elect Trump.
And then it did.
And now I have a whole community of friends whose stabilizers have completely malfunctioned. I live in a little bubble of Bernie-or-Bust enthusiasts, you see. They had a hard time accepting Hillary even though they did, but the unexpected outcome of the election means they are facing a horror that leaves them in a variety of emotional turmoil. There are the ranters, the ragers, the depressives, the survivalists, the marchers, the letters-to-the-editor writers, the joiners-of-causes, and those planning exile in Belize or Costa Rica. (Canada doesn't want us and Mexico would make us pay for The Wall.)
And there are some whose mean streak was fired up by Trumpism: those hoping for the unmentionable, those passing rumor as fiction and, gotta face it, those like me who threw a good neighbor out of my house.
They have no coherent path, they are just running their minds in every direction, which is why I know their stabilizers have conked out.
I get pretty smug about how mine is functioning since I've got on The Pills.
Whenever a friend takes off on a rant about Trump, for example, my stabilizer swings into action and I think of something to like about him: he makes me laugh, for example, or he's not a lawyer. (I can't think of anything else just yet, but that's enough to balance me out against the rants I'm so sick of hearing.) It's stabilizing.
Or, if a friend in a rage mentions the Supreme Court, I immediately think, "I'll be dead before long so I won't have to live under a right-wing court."
You see, it's the stabilizer again.
Or, when another friend warns me that the insane House Republicans have repealed my Medicare Advantage Plan, I think, "Well good, I won't get that knee replacement, one less operation to deal with."
It's become clear that my stabilizer doesn't make value judgments; all it does is present a positive picture and bingo, you're smiling. It's sort of like Buddhism in a pill.
So I'm stocking up bottles of them, taking two a day with meals, and I highly recommend you purchase them before Trump starts building up the nuclear arsenal on Day 2 and planning a practice hit on North Korea.
I expect I'll be fanning the breeze on Day 3 and exclaiming, "What an interesting odor."
— Dorothy Vogel, lives in Talent, is the author of a new mystery that takes place in Southern Oregon, called The Timber Mill Action, available on Amazon.com.