74 long, dark nights for America: “A man named Nigel Farage” and opening up a can of worms

by awindram

Seventy-four long, dark nights to go.

Trump’s Daily Twitter Highlight: What do African-Americans and Hispanics have to lose by going with me. Look at the poverty, crime and educational statistics. I will fix it!”

Clinton’s Daily Twitter Highlight: “Countless women fought to win the right to vote. On the anniversary of the 19th Amendment’s adoption, let’s recommit to protecting it.

Daily election article of interest: Hillary’s Lifeboat to the GOP.

Look who has stayed around in the news cycle. It’s bad enough that James Corden has become a star Stateside, but I am certainly not ready for Farage to be a regular in the news here,  too.

Only seventy-four nights to go now.

And thinking of nightmarish things before bed, a woman on a rush hour D train this week caused a panic when she threw crickets and meal worms over fellow commuters. In the melee someone pulled the emergency brake, meaning all those (some suffering panic attacks) in the carriage were stuck there for half an hour in the sweltering heat. The woman proceeded to urinate in the carriage. 

Yesterday it featured on the front page of the New York tabloids. It seemed an extreme version of a scenario that plays itself out daily on the New York subway: individuals with clear mental problems who rant or shout or does some extreme anti-social behavior. Despite New Yorkers’ reputation for aggression and rudeness, these incidents are usually not met with aggression. Most understand that these are people who for whatever reason are not getting the help they need. It is a sad reality of using public transport in a major city that you will encounter disturbed, broken people who may make you recoil or may make you want to help them – but there’s little that you can do. In extreme circumstances such as this, trying to calm down the individual – as people did in this case – and wait for the authorities to arrive and hope they take them for psychiatric help rather than to the police station is about the best you can do. 

But it turns out the meal worm woman is not mentally incapacitated, because we would forgive her her actions, no, she is, in fact, something for which there can be no forgiveness – a performance artist. Apparently, this was a piece that was intended to highlight people’s attitudes to mental illness – something people might feel difficult to make careful consideration about when they are having a panic attack in a confined space they’re trapped in. A previous and equally charming piece by the artist was putting online a purportedly real video of her pretending to be a mother who is stabbing her baby to get revenge on the baby’s father. The performance artist considers herself a provocateur: I suspect most of us consider her a troll, though, if anything, she seems appropriate for this age of Trump. Perhaps we’ll discover Trump’s own campaign is a similarly misconceived work of performance art.

“It was about seeing people’s reactions to racism. I wanted to see what could be the most outrageous thing I could say and still win primaries.”