It's not that I “won’t” vote for Donald Trump; I “can’t. I am not able.
I’m too fat. I’m also too ugly. Lord knows, I try to live up to his exacting expectations. I play tennis four times a week, eat salads rather than “fat burgers,” don’t drink soda. But the nasty fact of the matter is that I’m a middle-aged man with a tubby middle that won’t leave.
Unlike the woman he called “Miss Piggy,” I would have never made it past round one in any beauty contest. I was solemnly told at age 5 that I was never going to make it on my beauty, so I’d better find something useful to do.
My hair is skimpy, too – bald, you might say, on a good day. And, try as I might, I just can’t make it swirl up into that explosive blond DA that Donald sports. Maybe I’ve got the wrong spray or maybe it takes more or different shampoo. But the bottom line is that mine just isn’t up to scratch. And, he probably just has more than I do.
I don’t fit in with his friends, either.
He hangs with guys who I find intimidating in their “male” insolence: Don King, Vladimir Putin, that “Chachi” guy? They all seem so sure of themselves. I do not have their confidence – at least in him.
The people I hang out with are just not up to par. They spend far too much time staring into space, thinking about stuff, cogitating, sipping coffee, when they could be rushing into the fray, with a fistful of half-baked answers, spraying self-assurance pheromones in every direction while jamming on the easy, quick solutions. My friends agonize over things like which truck to buy: “the aluminum bed or the steel bed,” they ask? Donald’s buddies would simply buy both and damn the torpedoes. In several colors, probably.
Donald and his friends do not seem to worry about the things I worry about. They can leave aside those pesky things that seem to bug me daily: how much will I pay in taxes this year? Is my job secure? Are my kids behaving themselves?
Donald needs not care much about taxes: he may or may not be paying any, but he has lawyers to do his worrying for him, anyways. If he does not get the job he’s currently applying for, he plans a “very, very long, very, very nice vacation.” When his kids are not babbling obsequious non-sequiturs about Dad, they are swimming in the money fountain he’s created for them (largely from bilking his contractors, apparently).
The bottom line is that I’m a slightly fat, not too handsome, balding middle-aged dude who worries about pretty mundane things and thinks that decisions should take time and thought.
Who can I feel comfortable voting for?
Well, I had the opportunity to see this fellow, Sen. Tim Kaine, the other day here in Lakeland. He’s second fiddle on the other ticket. He peeked around the curtain as he was introduced, not sure where the podium was. A good sign. Trump would have shot into the room, doing wheelies on a Harley, with a portable podium strapped to the hard-tail, a dozen skinny, beautiful, brainless “aides” in his wake to set it up and re-comb his hair.
Kaine did not so much shoot as saunter. I felt better already.
He was wearing a suit that looked to come from Nathan’s, fashionable but probably with some wear on it. I doubt he owns an Armani. Well, maybe the T-shirt.
He worries about his three kids, especially, probably, his eldest, Nat, a deployed Marine. He did not suddenly shoot to the top of the ladder fueled by Dad’s small loan of a million or two but worked his way up the ladder as a city councilman, mayor, lieutenant governor, governor and U.S. senator. A grinder.
He’s not fat, whatever that means. I guess he’s fit, but it's hard to tell and I was not really looking. He talked about jobs as though he’d had one. He had some solutions, and some things he was not as sure about, like what to do in the Middle East. He seemed to think we all might cogitate a bit about that.
He was slow to attack the other party. They had some good ideas, too, he thought. He was not natty. He was not coiffed. He looked a little tired, but that could be because he was prepping for the vice presidential debate or working, or thinking, maybe.
He hung out for a while after his speech, with my students, to chat and take pictures, as though he thought that they and their mundane opinions might matter, too. As I stood off to the side, I got a good look at him. Yup, a little more around the middle than he was probably comfortable with, a little thin on top in the hair department, one of his shoes was about to be untied.
You know, not once in his speech did he take the time to insult anyone, call anyone out, drag in scandal – no sense of drama. Boring? Perhaps. But I think I can rise to his level, at least intellectually, and in light of appearance. And his Boss is a woman. So’s mine.
We might talk trucks at some point. But I’d rather he keep thinking about the things the country faces. And maybe he can suggest a weight-loss program.
R. Bruce Anderson is a political science professor at Florida Southern College in Lakeland.