A Trump win? Like having an Airbnb neighbour, nightmare
What will Tuesday bring? Canada’s greatest journalists at The Beaverton did the science and report that 9 out of 10 Canadians will spend the day “rocking back and forth while moaning softly.”
If Donald Trump wins, Canada’s new next-door neighbour will suddenly become very much like the ones the Star reported on last Thursday. A newly renovated Upper Beach home was posted on Airbnb by the owners, Madison Dalzell and Jarred Hoo, and guess who showed up?
A bunch of Trump voters, more or less. After neighbours reported a loud, late and violent party, an armoured police vehicle and tactical officers with rifles and bullhorns emptied the house on Merrill Ave., arresting six men and a young girl and seizing three loaded handguns, a pellet gun and crack cocaine.
“It was chaotic, it was scary, it was difficult to understand what was happening,” a frightened neighbour told reporter Betsy Powell. That is how many Canadians feel after this painfully prolonged U.S. election campaign.
In Toronto, we are what now looks like one very thin lake away from Trumpland. Background: in my almost excessively sleepy Toronto neighbourhood, a neo-Nazi newspaper began publishing. Canada Post delivered it to our home. We had to hide the foul thing. But in the U.S., there was no hiding from it. “Jew-S-A! Jew-S-A!” one Trump voter screamed at a Jewish reporter at a rally, though thankfully not a Nuremberg rally. Yet.
Trumpland will be the world’s new pariah, the neighbour from hell, the loud people who shoot guns into the night sky and say, “Nice country you have there, Canada. Shame if anything happened to it.” They will invade your Airbnb and make the bathroom uninhabitable in their own special way.
They’re the kind of neighbour who owns long, thick snakes.
They’ll throw their garbage over the border, pour Mountain Dew in Lake Ontario, sell killer green Fentanyl to our young and our troubled, and oh yes, steal our water. As drought turns the rich American plains a cloudy beige, Trump will nuke us for our rivers. He’ll feed Midwestern cornfields for the highfructose syrup that Trumpland likes to have on tap.
Oh, how the Trumpland dogs will howl. They’ll eat what the raccoons excrete, then eat the raccoons, and start eyeing your cats. The fences of Trumplanders will be chain link, the windows boarded up. You’ll smell roasting meat and hear cawing laughter next door. “Where’s Miss Kitty?” you’ll say.
If you value your intact spine, you will not visit Trumpland as a tourist, even a white tourist — no other kind, “you betcha,” as Sarah Palin used to say — you will fly directly to airports in normal cities: New York, Los Angeles, maybe Boston.
Then you will do your hasty business and hustle right back out on the red-eye lest your flight be redirected to the originalists: Alabama, West Virginia, FBI headquarters.
Consider the metaphor. If you had an Airbnb nightmare neighbour, a house of deplorables rather than a nation, what would you do?
Here’s the Neighbourhood plan vs. the Canada plan.
Locally, keep 911 on speed dial and give police a crisp update. Ask them to send big trucks, not those little grey stealth cars. Stock up on canned goods, powdered orange juice and board games. Buy firewood. Burn your furniture last.
Nationally, call the United Nations Security Council to which, trust me, the U.S. will no longer belong. Call NATO allies. Maybe call the Chinese because the enemy of our enemy is possibly our friend or will pretend to be for their own purposes.
And where are you personally? In the fetal position and making whimpering noises? Look, Hillary Clinton might win. She will like Canada as we were a beacon of rationalism during her long, dark campaign years.
I will spend Tuesday evening — election night — in my family’s loving arms. We’ll have a candy bowl of sedatives, Kleenex, and music to ennoble: the hymn Jerusalem and Rufus Wainwright singing Hallelujah.
Should Trump win, I shall play Queen’s Death on Two Legs. Sample lyrics: “You talk like a big business tycoon, you’re just a hot-air balloon. Kill joy. Bad guy. Big talking. Small fry.”
Should Clinton win, I’ll just go to bed, you know, like a normal person and sleep the sleep of the goodhearted.
Fingers crossed, my dear readers.
Trumpland will be the world’s new pariah, the neighbour from hell, the loud people who shoot guns into the night sky and say, “Nice country you have there, Canada. Shame if anything happened to it.”
In Toronto, we are what now looks like one very thin lake away from Trumpland, Heather Mallick writes.