I was recently asked, “What does it feel like to be an American living through the Trump Administration?” My instinctual response was, “exhaustion”. It feels like exhaustion. As though you’re running an uphill marathon, while carrying a giant, anthropomorphic pumpkin – that is clearly in excess of 239 pounds – who is constantly screaming blatant bullshit into your ear. You’re not sure if you should: (A) keep trucking on in the hope that you reach the finish line; (B) stop running and focus all of your energy on arguing with a damn pumpkin; or (C) fuck it all and throw yourself off the nearest cliff. However, none of these really solve the problem. You’re either going to collapse under the (again) WAY heavier than 239 pound pumpkin, morph into a raving lunatic trying to talk sense into a fruit (yes a pumpkin IS a fruit, google it) or be dead (the inevitable outcome of cliff diving sans parachute).
So you try to compromise by utilizing different elements of all three. You say to yourself, “Today I’ll run and ignore it because I have to get this report done for work”. Then the next morning comes and you experience “The Donald Trump Effect”, wherein you read something so profoundly stupid, you’re immediately struck with explosive diarrhea. The only cure for this being to log on to the internet and tweet to him that, “Yes, this is a witch hunt, but you’re a goddamn witch. So what the fuck did you expect???” And by the end of the week, you’re so done that you get shit faced drunk, because by now you’re 100 percent convinced he’s going to blow up the world before your check liver light can even come on, so you don’t have to worry about cirrhosis anyway.
This has basically been my life for the past year or so, the first six months I was in denial, so I’m not counting those. After reflecting on this question I’ve decided that, if I ever want to see the finish line, I need to address the underlying “crazy” here. That being, narcissism. Because if untreated narcissistic personality disorder somehow managed to fuck “daddy issues”, and then give birth to a baby with a very small penis, it would be named Donald Trump. I realized a while ago that he was a narcissist, but as his presidency bares down on us like a Sharknado on steroids the extent of his illness is becoming more clear. I am not shitting you. This man is nuttier than a bull with four testicles, eating a fruit cake on a peanut farm.
I’ll prove it. The Mayo Clinic lists 20 symptoms as indicators of narcissistic personality disorder (NPD). They generally define it as a personality disorder wherein a person has, “An inflated sense of their own importance, a deep need for excessive attention and admiration, troubled relationships, and a lack of empathy for others. But behind this mask of extreme confidence lies a fragile self-esteem that’s vulnerable to the slightest criticism”. Now I’m not a clinical psychologist, but this is so obvious it doesn’t really take one. Also, according to the DSM-V, one only need exhibit five of the 20 symptoms. So here we go…
Have an exaggerated sense of self-importance:
“Owning a great golf course, gives you great power”. Yes. He said this. As though the power to determine who gets to tee off first is somehow the equivalent of choosing who lives and who dies. Do you want to know what owning a great golf course gives you? Free golf.
Have a sense of entitlement and require constant, excessive admiration:
The man insists on having one more scoop of ice-cream, than everyone else. This is most likely the reason he doesn’t actually weigh 239 pounds. Also, what the fuck? That is some double black diamond level petty shit, right there.
Insist on having the best of everything — for instance, the best car or office:
“I have all the best words”. That one’s going, going gone!!! He’s rounding the bases for a home run, in the world series of crazy. Enough said.
React with rage or contempt and try to belittle the other person to make themselves appear superior:
I point you to LITERALLY his whole Twitter page. Even if you don’t want to contribute, I encourage everyone to join just so you can see this. If there was such a thing as the Seven Wonders of Insanity, the whole list would be comprised of nothing but his Twitter page.
Be preoccupied with fantasies about success, power, brilliance, beauty or the perfect mate:
“I’ve always said if you need Viagra, you’re with the wrong girl”. First, we all know he needs Viagra. He’s probably popping that shit as though they were Flintstone vitamins. Second, the man looks like this…
What about THAT screams, “I can land a 10” to you? If he hadn’t inherited money, his wife would NOT be Melania. It wouldn’t even be Medusa.
Exaggerate achievements and talents:
“My whole life is about winning. I don’t lose often. I almost never lose”. This man has declared bankruptcy SIX times. He lost the popular vote. He’s had three wives leave him (I mean, let’s be real Melania’s already out the door). He inherited his money! Forget winning, he hasn’t even competed yet.
So there’s six out of the 20. I would encourage everyone to check out the remaining symptoms. If they hadn’t established this criteria prior to his presidency, I would absolutely believe that they had tailored it to fit him. Every one of them is perfectly on point.
The concept of Trump being a narcissist is not radical, or new. It’s definitely not original and has been written about before. I won’t be winning any Nobel Prizes. On a side note… Neither will Trump, because the idiot Republicans that “nominated” him didn’t even follow the proper procedure or do so within the established time frame. I will give them that it was a fantastic way to suck up though, especially to a narcissist. But anyway, no this isn’t original, and it will do nothing to convince him to seek help. Besides, he will never read it and even if he did, he would have given up about 500 words ago.
However, this isn’t for him. It’s for everyone who is being gas-lighted and victimized by him. Namely, the entire world, besides him and whomever else is swirling around in the MAGA Sharknado right now. It’s for us to revisit every time we question whether we’re the crazy one in this relationship. And clearly we aren’t. I know. I’ve been the crazy person in the relationship and I can tell you, in this specific case it is NOT US. And as long as we can keep this in mind, that giant pumpkin we’re carrying feels a little bit lighter.
And we need that. We need these moments of recognition. Where facts mean something again. And context matters. And perspective is given. We need it, because goddamn it, we are all going to reach that finish line. Even if we have to relay race this shit, passing history’s most despotic, orange baton back and forth, so that no one has to dive off a cliff. After all, someone has to be around to write this chapter in our history books. A chapter that I can only assume will be entitled, “MAGA: When America Looked At Watergate And Said Here Hold My Beer”.