This past weekend I was driving through our small quaint New England town and approached the traffic circle slowly, because it’s still winter and some people seemingly have no winter driving skills in our small quaint New England town. As I began the circle, I passed the war memorial, then the snow covered flower beds and then the elderly man carrying his pro-Trump signs screaming something I could not understand and then a 200 hundred year old tree and, right then i realized I’d seen an old man with supportive Trump propaganda and I immediately pulled into the nearby hotel parking lot.
I walked across the road, into the center of the traffic circle and I began to approach the elderly man and I could hear, as a car would approach, he would begin some sort of rhythmic chant, “stop persecuting the president, stop fake newsing the president, stop…” and on it went. I got close enough that he looked over his shoulder and made eye contact. He had that gaze to his eyes of someone not quite sure what they’re doing. I said hello and he nodded, looked back toward the road, a small car approached and he began his chanting, “stop persecuting the president,” and in that very instant something magical overtook me and I just began my own chant, “fuck fuck fuck fuck fuck fuck” I screamed, much louder than the bewildered old man, like a crazy chicken who only knows one word.
The car passed and he again made eye contact, this time the dementia had disappeared from his confused face and his anger was visceral. “What the hell are you doing,” he asked. “Practicing my first amendment right, just like you,” I explained. The sound of a down shifting 18 wheeler caught his attention and he spun around and began his chant, “stop persecuting…” I again chimed in, rather eloquently I should add, with the same vigor and clarity, but maybe a bit louder this time, “fuck fuck fuck fuck.”
The truck driver passed, probably unaware of our choruses because it’s still winter and not a single car would pass the entire time with a window rolled down. Again the confused man looked back at me. “You gonna do that with every car?” He asked. I nodded and said, “are you?”
For about fifteen more minutes, cars, buses, campers and delivery trucks passed, hearing a grumpy old man spewing silliness about his president, and hearing me, doing a terrible Eric Cartman impersonation saying as many fucks in 15 seconds and I could muster. The old man confronted me again and said “I have every right to be out here, on public land, expressing my opinion.”
“As do I,” i replied.
“Fuck is not an opinion.”
“It should be,” I said, with a smile.
He walked back to his spot and picked up the sign that said, “MAGA” in giant red letters, turned again towards me and tried to frisbee toss it at me. It was right at that very moment that a local police officer entered the traffic circle, witnessed the entitled crusty old man throwing a large piece of propaganda at an obviously innocent park loving local, and he stopped, turned his lights on and got out of his car. I should add, we live in a small New England town, sign throwing might be the worst crime of the month.
The officer walked up to the old man and asked what he was doing. I could hear him explaining that he had been out, showing support for the president, and I had disrupted his public adoration with obscenities. The officer looked at me and I nodded and I remarked, “I could not let this sort of public abuse continue without a proper counter argument.” I think he smiled a little, because the elderly man turned a different shade of white, picked up another sign and said, “you son of a bitch liberal, you’re what’s wrong with this country,” and then he threw the sign that said “god loves Trump” at my head.
The police officer had the entitled bitter geezer cuffed in a matter of seconds. The old man was frothing as he said, “oh right, that guy can say anything and you do nothing, but a law abiding tax paying citizen gets arrested.” He was about five feet away from me, his hands cuffed behind his back, his face now sweating and twisted in that obsessively confused, but still angry sort of way. I reminded him, “that first amendment in a real bitch sometimes.”
“Oh you sure do love that first amendment, right sissy boy?” He spewed. The officer grabbed his hands and began to walk him to the police car. “How you feel about the second amendment loud mouth?” He asked, over his shoulder, as the officer opened his car door and helped the old man into the back seat. “It should be abolished,” I answered. The door closed and the officer began to walk towards me, as the uninformed entitled old man began to scream “fuck fuck fuck” at the top of his voice.
The officer looked at the obviously insane man spewing nasty words in the back seat of his sedan and said he’d make sure the old man would get a 72 hour psyche evaluation and asked if I wanted to press charges. I declined, but could not help smiling as the police car pulled away and the exasperated old fool continued to scream fuck like a drug addled wild eyed crazy man. I picked up the propaganda, pushed it into the trash bin at the hotel, got in my car and drove home.