You Could Fucking Sell That
Your boyfriend runs for president as an outsider political candidate.
You try not to let this disturb your life too much although your
boyfriend is always on the television and the radio and satellite radio
and the Internet. He gives interviews in the home you share and you
aren't there for any of them, you don't even try to be. His slogan is Turn it around, America!
and your slogan is This is none of my
business. You have a very
important business that is actually your business and you make the
money your boyfriend uses to run for president as an outsider political
candidate and otherwise you want nothing to do with it.
Eventually you agree to one interview. Short, very short, I'm very
busy, you say a little sharply to your boyfriend's campaign manager,
who called you at the office. You agree mostly to get him off the phone.
Never call me at the office, you text your boyfriend, even though he's
not even the one who called you.
You sit down for the interview with a woman who has a very broad,
sensitive face. Before the cameras start rolling, you watch her do
facial exercises to stretch out her face muscles. At first, she looks
gently concerned and you're about to ask her what her problem is, but
then she laughs too loudly and then she frowns deeply and then,
excruciatingly, begins to fake cry, which she is not good at. Then she
makes a series of very loud noises, stretching her face to its extremes
one way or the other, before finally setting into her default facial
expression, a very placid affair you described initially as sensitive.
She wears spring colors, pastel pinks and yellows, and you wonder
whether it's spring. You have no idea if it's spring or not, but her
eyeshadow matches her outfit and her eyes, closed while she practices
her weep-moaning, remind you of Easter eggs.
She smiles and begins your interview.
Later, you are on all of the shows. People describe you as unlikeable.
They talk about how you were too sharp or too mean or too smart or your
suit was too grey. Almost charcoal, a very large potato-looking man
snarls on his talk show. You wore a grey suit and a black shirt, you
smiled but it seemed insincere, you run a very profitable business and
are worth billions of dollars and you are not good for the environment
or minorities or the economy. Your hair was expertly, beautifully
styled. You looked sexy but unapproachable. The American people hate
The American people hate you, your boyfriend's campaign manager says
over the phone. He clears his throat several times as he talks. You
wonder if he hates you too. You wonder if he and your boyfriend have
become lovers on the campaign trail. You wonder if your company has a
film and television division, because you could sell that story. You
could fucking sell that.
You are about to respond that you hate the American people too, but
your boyfriend's campaign manager hangs up on you. Almost immediately
your face on the TV screen is replaced by your boyfriend standing in a
half embrace with the Trash Pope, both men waving with their free
hands. The Trash Pope looks benevolent, which you suppose is basically
his full-time job anyway. The pundits describe this as a coup for your
boyfriend, leading to sharp polling increases among Americans who
practice the Trash Religion. When the TV show cuts away from your
boyfriend and the Trash Pope, all that remains is a ticker across the
bottom of the screen that reads, Popular political
candidate has awful boyfriend, has secured the endorsement of the Trash
You sense a but belongs in that sentence somewhere. Instead, it seems
like the two things are connected. Your boyfriend finally responds to
your text, with a brief email asking for more money and referring to
you as his campaign's "largest donor."
On election night, you stand on the stage with your boyfriend and his
campaign manager and dozens of people you don't recognize, people you
assume did something to aid your boyfriend's campaign. You're pretty
sure one of the men is a high-ranking official in the Trash Church.
Your boyfriend has a strong lead in the exit polls and everyone is
smiling at each other. There is an outrageous amount of smiling. The
campaign manager suggests you and your boyfriend engage in some
celebratory affection, a hug or a kiss or a head butt. You ignore him
and he head butts your boyfriend instead.
The assassination seems to come from nowhere. The sniper rifle makes a
loud crack, still barely audible above the crowd. Your boyfriend is one
state away from winning the electoral college. It's Florida, you think,
maybe it's Florida. You catch your boyfriend as he falls back. It's a
high-caliber bullet, the kind that leaves both an entrance hole and an
As you sit, cradling your boyfriend's mostly-exploded head, you think
of the First Lady who, under similar circumstances, tried to keep her
husband's brains contained within his head long enough for help to
arrive. You think of the First Lady who, shortly after her husband was
killed, went mad. You desperately wish you were that kind of lover, but
you don't feel ready to do either of those things. While you are
kneeling in front of maybe twenty thousand people with your dead
boyfriend's brains all over your charcoal-colored suit, your face is
Your boyfriend wins Florida and the election, and the campaign manager
is sobbing, and you think, yeah, you could definitely fucking sell that.
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