West Ottawan satire: Avoiding Trump’s name


Owen Gibson

President Trump has been in global news nearly every day since his inauguration in 2017, and has become a household name across the world due to his disruptive antics, unbelievable quotes, and shady actions. It seems that everyone has something to say about him, and everyone else is listening intently. So, I went on a quest to see if anyone had somehow avoided hearing about Trump for a full day in the last year or so.

   A few members of the community thought it was an impossible task. “It’s silly. Everyone has said something about Trump,” said a local accountant who works downtown. “Besides, why would someone not want to hear jokes about Trump? Trump jokes are the pinnacle of humor. You would think that calling him Drumpf or saying he’s orange would get old after the first hundred times you’ve heard it, but it really doesn’t!”

   With that in mind, I started looking for people who strayed away from news outlets. The outskirts of the town seemed like a good spot, so I found a cornfield in South Holland and set up camp, waiting to spot someone who seemed disconnected from the outside world. Sure enough, an old man approached my campsite only a few hours after I arrived.

   “Excuse me, you’re trespassing in my cornfield!” the man said loudly. Calmly, I asked the man if there was a day in the past year where he hadn’t heard Trump’s name. Just as loudly as before, he yelled “What?!”. I repeated my question, and he yelled “What?!” again. I figured that the man must be hard of hearing. Yelling this time, I asked my question.

   His face lit up with understanding. “Oooh, Trump! No, I hear about him every day!” The man shakily pulled an IPhone 7 out of his pocket. “I get alerts whenever he tweets! Did you know his real name is Drumpf?!”

   That was all I needed to hear. I collected my things and fled the scene. If even the out-of-the-loop older generation was in on Trump jokes, who wouldn’t be? Defeated, I returned to my workplace.

   But when I returned to my desk, a hawk was sitting on my computer, with a note tied around its foot. The note said this:

   “I have heard that you are looking for someone who has not heard the name of the Dark Lord. Come to this location ALONE.”

   The note had a set of coordinates that, when Googled, came up to be a mountain in the Himalayas. So, of course, I got a plane ticket immediately.

   After several weeks of grueling hiking, snowstorms, and many near-death experiences in the mountains, I finally came across an ancient cave that lined up with the coordinates I was given. When I entered, I was greeted with some 1950’s style music playing on a decrepit record player. An elderly man with a very long white beard approached from deep in the cave.

   “I have not seen the outside world in over 50 years,” the man said. “I fled the US in fear of nuclear war. I have been here ever since. I desperately miss my family and friends; I do not know if my wife is even still alive. I send hawk messages, but most are lost. I am a hermit now, and will likely be one for the rest of my days, never knowing the outside world, the outside world having forgotten me many years ago.”

   I asked the hermit what he does every day, alone in the mountains.

   “Besides hunting mountain goat, I meditate to better understand the universe. I listen to nature, letting it tell me the truth about our place in the grand scheme of things. It has taken me many years of focus and dedication to learn to listen to the very wind. It has many wise things to say.”

   I wiped the snow from my beard and asked the man my question. “O wise hermit, has there been a day in the past year where you have not heard the name of Trump?”

   The hermit stroked his beard, contemplating. “Ah, yes, Trump. He is the man with bad hair and orange skin, yes?”

   I stared at the hermit, awestruck. “How do you know about Trump? You just said you don’t know anything about the US!” I questioned.

   The hermit chuckled. “Yes, I know nothing of current American politics. But the winds carry tales of Trump, telling of his hypocrisy and improper manner.” He smiled, amused. “This… ‘Twitter’, as you call it, is hilarious. Are his hands truly tiny?”

   I quickly left the cave. I had wasted a month of my life, and was fully convinced that everyone was all-in on Trump jokes. The only other thing I could think to try was contact an alien civilization, but they probably see the jokes in radio signals sent from Earth.

   The conclusion I reached was that the Trump joke is now an integral part of our culture, and nothing could be done about it. On the plane ride home, I accepted the fact that I would likely hear about Trump every day for the next 3-7 years, maybe even beyond that. I hoped dearly that the next president wouldn’t be as mockable as the current one.