Whenever I have to go out in public, I have one main goal (other than the reason I am in public), and that is to make it safely home without going viral or being today’s twitter star. That’s it.
And I almost blew it today, when three jackasses age 50-70 were behind me in line at the deli, one with a Donald Trump mask, two without masks, and they started yammering about how awesome Trump was, how he got cheated, etc. I kept my cool and said nothing and was doing fine until one of them referred to Obama as “the Kenyan” and asserted he is actually running the show and calling Biden every morning, and I just fucking lost it, turned around, looked at them, and bellowed “FUCK DONALD TRUMP AND WHERE ARE YOUR GOD DAMNED MASKS?”
It was quiet from that point on and I managed to escape without becoming a youtube star.
Did they just stand there in shocked silence?
Being old geezers they didn’t have the reflex to whip out their phones and start filming. So no Youtube for you.
You said what had to be said. I admire your restraint.
I applaud you.
@John Cole: That’s because they were stunned to realize everyone does not live in the same bubble they do.
Good for you.
Oh, to be a large, intimidating White man!
Also: excellent work!
I love you, John Cole.
When you said one was wearing “a Donald Trump mask,” I immediately pictured a full-face Halloween-type mask, like the Guy Fawkes mask in V for Vendetta.
I hope you had your FRONT TOWARD ENEMY mask on!
Never mind worrying about becoming a YouTube star, you were running the risk of being the next gun violence statistic. Don’t take those sorts of risks. What would happen to this blog if you weren’t here to front it? What would happen to the Cole menagerie?
Ya could have been an influencer Cole, think of the FREE STUFF!
Sister Golden Bear
Another day, yet another effort by the bible humpers to eradicate trans people from public life (and I don’t use that term lightly).* The Arkansas bill would enable teachers to intentionally deadname and misgender their students. This will kill kids.
Studies show more than half of trans/non-binary teens have seriously considered suicide — because yes, life is that fucking tough for them — but also that rate was cut in half when their pronouns were respected.
*Comes two days after the state legislature overrode the governor’s veto in order to pass a bill banning trans kids from getting necessarily healthcare until age 21. They’ve also introduced a “bathroom bill” for a total of nine anti-transgender actions by this legislature.
Four are law: No transgender girls in sports; refusal of medical services by conscience; prohibition of medical services to minors; discouragement of discussion of LGBT issues in school. Another bill to allow the attorney general to sue over transgender sports participation is pending.
Aww damn, well, idiots walk among us. Tip-o-the-hat to you, good sir.
The hero we need.
Sister Machine Gun of Quiet Harmony
I imagine they were shocked. I have no doubt they assumed you held the same political beliefs they do because you didn’t look like the stereotypes they have in their heads for ‘Demoncrats’.
@Sister Golden Bear: North Carolina introduced a bill that would have similar effects. Pro life my ass. Someone should call children services on them, because it’s abuse.
John G. (Karen) Cole. Love to see it.
Good for you. Plus glad you won’t become an even a bigger star than you already are. This comes with spring. And summer and fall and winter.
Take it easy. Hang out with yr house, cooking, and nature over there in lovely West Virginia.
Almost cut my hair. Happened just the other day. Remember all that? I surely do.
@zhena gogolia: I’m thinking more ‘mask that TFG should be wearing’. Silence of the Lambs being the point of reference here.
@RobertDSC-Work: LOL. Peace out. So funny.
Dorothy A. Winsor
You are my hero, Cole
Exactly what happens when I lose it on the fucking assholes around here who pull that shit until I lose my mind on them. Tough guys aren’t so tough then.
Wait…did Cole ask to see the manager, too? =)
Exactly this. Let them find some other ‘safe space’ where they can get their hate on
Not all heroes wear capes.
All heroes wear masks, and insist the morans around them do the same.
@John Cole: Good for you! thanks for sharing.
*applauds* Thanks, John – well done!
@Sister Golden Bear:
I wonder if these new laws can be subject to litigation; I certainly hope so. Has anyone sued yet? The Arkansas Court will find for the state, no doubt; but even SCOTUS might have a tough time explaining how public schools have a right to impose “deeply held religious beliefs” on the student body.
Good on you for doing the job the deli isn’t able to do in the age of negative Yelp reviews.
@John Cole: Nicely done.
Sister Golden Bear
@John Cole: Thank you for bursting their bubble and giving them a badly-needed clue-by-4!
@John Cole: @WaterGirl:
Good for you. They assumed that OF COURSE the white guy in front of them would think the same as they do. You totally upended those biases.
@Dorothy A. Winsor: I’d donate a hundred bucks worth of your books to the library if you would say that to the non-mask-wearers in your book club. :-)
Because sensible people aren’t willing to waste their breath telling pig-headed old white men that they’re wrong, the MAGAts can delude themselves into thinking that their point of view is universal outside of ethnic minorities and nose-ringed college students. They assume that everyone around them must agree with them, since they get no pushback to their asinine racist blathering. I think you did a public service by reminding them that most Americans – even some of the white males – think they are jackasses.
This is what I would love to do if I had more guts and more of a backbone. I’ll echo the comment above: you’re my hero.
Dorothy A. Winsor
@WaterGirl: LOLOL. Tempting but I can’t storm out of the store and never these people again.
Sister Golden Bear
@CaseyL: All of these, plus similar laws passed in other states, will end up in court. I wish I shared your optimism about the current Supreme Court.
But even if Arkansas and others lose in court, they succeeded in other ways — much like with the voter suppression bills. They force the trans communities to spend time, effort and money fighting them, all of which could otherwise be directed at more productive purposes; and they also are intended to intimidate trans people, and especially trans kids, to drive us back into the closet or keep us from ever coming out.
It has been my experience that those on the left don’t expect everyone to share their opinions have no problem engaging in discussions of them and those on the right are shocked to find out that not everyone shares their opinions and can rarely come up with anything to support them if challenged at all. That was not the case 40 years ago, or even 30.
You did a good thing in reminding them that not everyone agrees with them, shocking as that may be to them.
@Jeffro:I have no doubt they assumed you held the same political beliefs they do because you didn’t look like the stereotypes they have in their heads for ‘Demoncrats’.
This is what I was thinking. Either these guys assumed JC was a Trumper (older, white, etc.) and let their racist flag fly, or they just assumed that everyone was totally cool with them being racist fuckwads in public.
@John Cole: omg you CANCELED them! Why, the unfairness of it, the terrible lack of civility! Don’t you know that only straight White Republican men are allowed to talk that way? Sounds to me like somebody needs to learn his place!
I gotta say, when I go out in the morning my first thought is not “I don’t want to end up on a viral YouTube video today”
Still, you are heroic. My wife scolds me out of these impulses, because she is aware that so many people are carrying guns
James E Powell
I’m impressed that you didn’t include a “FUCK YOU GUYS”
Handing out business cards embossed with
doesn’t cut the proverbial mustard, eh?
Cole, will you come with me when I go to the store?
@Dorothy A. Winsor: I am disappointed, but I understand.
Shocking them into silence isn’t as awesome as changing their minds, but it’s a close second.
WRT stupid Arkansas…. fuck them. I took Spawn the Elder to get his first shot today and I insisted that he be called by his preferred name and pronouns. And everyone at the vaccination site was very polite about it. That’s all he wants. He doesn’t give a shit about their approval. He has friends and family for that. He needs respect so he can live his life in a low-friction way.
So I just resigned from my job. Starting a new one on May 10. It’s been an emotional week.
I don’t waste my time with people like that. They’re not going to learn anything, just feel lots of self-righteous, butt-hurt grievance. Though it would be nice if they’d wear masks.
I’ve had a couple of similar incidents and I’m usually pretty easygoing. Now that I’m dosed and Mrs. R is on her way I’m hoping to calm down a bit. It’s the fucking arrogance that galls me.
Enhanced Voting Techniques
That’s the thing, John is a white dude too. These MAGAtwits don’t know what to do when when white privilege meets white privilege. What were they going to do ; whine at John “The only part of my ass that isn’t fish belly white is were my cat bit me” Cole about how the White Man is the real victim?
JC speaks for me today.
In other news, Biden proposes big increases in non-Defense spending, except at DHS:
Good, good. And long over-due.
More at the link.
@Suzanne: Wow! After all that……………..it’s good you could get another job in the same place though. Knock ’em dead!
@Enhanced Voting Techniques: Yeah it’s funny, I look VERY much like a MAGAt, to the point that a lot of them just assume I’m one of them and start talking to me that way, and when I respond very much the opposite — usually without biting — the bewilderment, and something akin to a look of hurt betrayal, is at times almost hilarious.
I suppose this makes me a bad person, but I don’t invite it deliberately.
That isn’t blowing it John. That’s you being a rock star.
@Suzanne: wow! congratulations on the new job.
Last I had heard, you had been offered a job back in AZ.
What job did you take?
From what I recall of a couple of videos you’ve linked here, Cole, your normal speaking voice is pretty close to a Bene Gesserit trained Voice. Crank that baby up to Warp 4 and I’m not surprised they were rocked back on their heels. ?
@Suzanne: Well done. Best of luck with the new position. They’re lucky to have you!!
@WaterGirl: I took a job at a firm in Philadelphia but my primary project will be in Alexandria, VA. I will me doing most work from home but traveling. Brave new world.
@JaneE: I actually get a little freaked out when equally liberal family members of mine start talking loudly about politics in public, because I have it ingrained in me from long experience growing up in a deep-red area (no longer deep red, but it was in those days) that if you do that, you’re going to seriously offend somebody and maybe start a fight. I learned to keep my head down.
And, at the same time, Tucker Carlson is going full-on fascist. This is where we are now. Talking back isn’t a 100% safe thing to do, but it’s the right thing to do. Good for you.
Another new job?!?!?!?!? Still here in the ‘Burgh, I hope.
@Suzanne: I am guessing it must be an interesting project at a good company, and more money, for you to be changing again so soon.
Hopefully it’s not a “pick 2” situation. :-)
How awesome that you are so good at your job that you are in demand like that. Go you!
@Matt McIrvin: Just like you do here. :-)
@geg6: Philadelphia – see comment #58 in answer to my question.
Honestly John, that’s called using your Whiteness as a force for good. Those assholes had you pegged, you were a middle-aged white dude who they thought they were safe around in letting their racist flag fly. The more people like us (again, middle aged white dudes who visibly pass for conservative a-holes even if we aren’t) call them out, the less safe they feel and the less certain they are of their “majority.” It sucks that we have this power over them, it really does, but damn it if we shouldn’t use it.
I think you and this person might get along.
Moving again! I feel for you.
@geg6: Staying in the Burgh for now! They would love to have me move to Philly. MAYBE.
@WaterGirl: It is an incredible project at a very high-profile firm.
I’m still sad. I very much like my colleagues and my current gig is very comfortable.
I love this person. Madly.
I do that thing John did today a lot. I don’t go to Walmart anymore because my John is afraid I’m going to get myself shot telling some maskless disgusting asshole MAGAt to wear their mask properly and quit leaning over me to reach something on a shelf. I have no fucks left to give with these assholes at this point.
@Sister Golden Bear:&nb
Defund Arkansas- really, we should hurt the powers that be in these states
Bravo John. My only similar experience was having to listen to an unmasked anti-masker first try to rationalize her behaviour, then encouraging the woman in line behind me to not wear her mask either. I interrupted the conversation and asked the masked woman to continue to wear her mask for her sake and everyone else she came close to as well. The anti-masker tried to engage me and I told her to not bother because I don’t have the time to waste trying to convince her based on what I already heard.
Oh yay! I’m really hoping that we can have a meetup when this whole pandemic thing is under control.
@Tim C.: I get the same shit. People assume cause I’m white and well off that I must be a Repuke. No fucking way not ever.
@WaterGirl: Philly and Pittsburgh – my folks come from Pittsburgh, I spent most of my adult life in Philly. Love ’em both, and a lot of the smaller cities in PA, too.
@geg6: Yes yes! So happy to get Spawn the Elder his shot today. One fewer thing on my mind.
You know we all would’ve ‘Liked’ that video and cheered in the comments!
The things we are willing to put up with, to a point, for delicious deli mustard.
@geg6: Did you mean that for Suzanne?
@Suzanne: Life is so fucking complicated. But you have options, so that part is awesome. I am not good at leaving.
Philadelphia (noun): a precariously balanced mix of charms and defects, of hidebound and dispassionate, situated on the Delaware River.
Ditto; the only thing which came to mind.
Instant appetite suppressant.
BWAHA AH AH AH AH AHA HA HA HA HA H A
That would have held me for the rest of the month, if I had seen it, Cole.
@NotMax: Philadelphia is the best city in America, or at least on the east coast. I’d move back there in a heartbeat.
@NotMax: No love for the Schuylkill?
My last experience with it goes back some 50+ years. Heck, they couldn’t even position the statue of Willie as intended – his butt faces the harbor.
Extreme trivia: One intersection of the dirt roads in the summer camp where I worked had signs for Broad & Market.
River or Expressway?
@NotMax: River – the less said about the Expressway, the better. In the several years I lived at the base of the 23rd Street exit ramp, my building had the front door broken down twice by cars going too fast and once by a motorcycle. Most spectacular was somebody who was going so fast they missed the ramp entirely, launched into space, and went end over end for a couple blocks on 676. Heard it, didn’t see it – by the time I looked out the window, cops and EMTs were everywhere. Can’t imagine it went well for folks in the vehicle.
@Cameron – @brendancalling
Still raises a grin remembering a conductor on the train proudly and loudly announcing, as we pulled out of the North Philly station, “Next stop, Philadelphia! Philadelphia, the brother of lov-el-y Sid!”
True story. Guy I knew was being honked at for swerving on the Schuylkill and impeding traffic, slowing down while he desperately searched for a place to try to pull over.
As explanation for those behind him he stuck his arm out the window, grippiing in its hand the steering wheel which had become detached.
SASQUATCH RANTS AT ECONOMICALLY ANXIOUS AMERICANS IN DELI LINE!
Gin & Tonic
@Suzanne: Congratulations. Lot of changes, hope it works out.
You might understand this, not sure if others will. My son will have his long-delayed wedding reception next April at Luis Barragan’s Casa Pedregal in CDMX.
Not only is John a pale white guy, he’s a combat veteran. Leaves the MAGATs nowhere to go.
@Honus: Assumes far more logic and decency than the average MAGAmoron will ever muster.
@Suzanne: Congratulations on your new job! I hope it will be wonderful.
…with the prominent exception of Superman.
Assumption is they came to the deli to stock up on head cheese.
“Somebody has to.”
Those of us who usually stew in teeth-grinding rage salute you!
@Gin & Tonic: That will be an AMAZING venue. So jealous. Would love to see photos.
Mary Ellen Sandahl
Bravissimo, revered blog originator!
This whole phenomenon of using your MAGA looks for good reminds me of hilarious comedians Brent Terhune and Blair Erskine.
At this point in my life I have more regrets for the times I didn’t blow up than the times I did. But it’s a fine line. As they say, if you see something, say something. Preferably to their face.
J R in WV
Congratulations on everything in your news. Spawn the Elder getting vaccinated, and named and pronouned properly. All good!
New job, also too!
Philly is a good city, if you like a city. Alexandria is also nice, probably can afford a great health care project, so YAY you!
I lived in Philly briefly between first college in Carlisle Pa and evading the draft by enlisting in the Navy. It was interesting, there was room to be a hippy, briefly, in those turbulent times.
Best of luck in your new job. Pro Tip — don’t take calls from head hunters for a couple of years! They are great salesmen who do NOT have your best interests in mind at all.
J R in WV
Cole, BRAVO for standing up to the fascists in line.
We went to town today, Wife had a Dr appointment, and then we went out for lunch, first time we ate out in a year and a half ! ! No MAGATs in sight !!! Just youths of all shapes and sizes and ethnicities, even here in central WV.
@Suzanne: Congrats! That’s awesome!
@WaterGirl: Philly has changed HUGEly in the past few years. You can walk to some block one month and then again a few months later and not recognize it at all.
Great place to live, actually. Cultured, connected, fun, affordable. And also Gritty.
@John Cole: Awesome! Good on you John.
My husband and I are the same – older white people in a MAGA-heavy area, so people assume we are like them. It freaks them out sometimes when they find out how we feel about former guy and the conservative philosophy in general. Especially because we own a pub people assumed we’d hate the mask ordinance, too. They’re crazy! I do feel that it’s good for the people I work with, who are mostly from smaller towns around here, to see that they can like someone who doesn’t agree with their politics. They think we’re all like the caricature of liberals they hear about on Fox News. My 74-year-old husband gets mail from the RNC. Sometimes he answers their questionnaires with comments like “that’s bullshit” and “that’s not what’s proposed”. LOL
@Suzanne: A childhood friend has been an architect and PM at several of the firms in Philadelphia over the course of his career. Hope you have found a great opportunity!
I envy you as that would have been cathartic.
A sincere, heartfelt “thank you!”
They needed to hear that, and from a lot more people. Puncture those bubbles.
Socrates used to do that also. Of course, it got him killed eventually. So be safe, too.