I’M WITH HER
By DAVID HOLMBERG
I decided to check myself into a loony bin. Googled “Bins, loony” and found one nearby. Drove a ways and saw a sign, “Loony bin, one mile.” Drove on. Another sign: “Loony bin, next right. “ I shouted “No!” but kept driving.
Soon I came to a red, one-story building with a parking lot. A sign said, “Loony parking only. Non-loonies in back. “ I parked in the front and went in. A tough-looking security guard with a hatchet face said: “Loony?” I nodded and he directed me to a registration desk. A woman handed me what looked like a ballot. It said: “Reason for committal? Trump. Other. Check one.”
I checked “Trump” and was told to take a seat.
The room was crowded. People mumbled incoherently and moaned. I sat next to a woman wearing a blonde wig and an “I’m With Her” button. “Hello, I’m Hillary,” she said. She smiled. “What’s your name? Did you vote today?”
I moved to a seat alone in the back. I mumbled and moaned a while until my name was called. I was ushered into an office. A shrink introduced himself and asked me, “What is your earliest memory?” I responded: “Losing Florida.”
“No, I mean farther back.”
“Reading 538 in the morning and again at night.”
The shrink shrugged and asked if I’d ever been committed before.
“Yes,” I said. “To Obama.”
“No, I mean to an institution.”
“Yes, to democracy as we know it.”
“You’re being obsessive,” the shrink said. “You need to focus on the world before the election. Do you remember that world?”
“Well, I remember being glad we had a black president.”
“I remember being glad we were going to have a woman president.”
“Okay, what else?”
“I remember watching CNN.”
“I remember crying and drinking Scotch and falling asleep on the couch at some point.”
“Then what happened?”
“I just remember waking up and I knew it was a Wednesday morning and something terrible had happened and I wished I was dead.”
“Do you still wish you were dead?”
The shrink beamed. He shook my hand again. “Congratulations!”
“Hillary won the popular vote and you’re admitted!”
“Thanks. Could I use the men’s room now?”
“Sure. Here’s your straitjacket. Welcome!
I put on my straitjacket and headed for the men’s room. I could hear the moans and mumbling of my fellow loonies but I felt a sense of peace settling over me. I’d found a home for the next four years. Everything would be fine! I was still with her all the way.
DAVID HOLMERG IS A CAREER JOURNALIST AND CONTRIBUTOR TO THE NEW YORK TIMES, AMONG OTHER PUBLICATIONS.