Category Archives: Satire

The Cask of Trump Meritage

Adapted from The Cask of Amontillado by Edgar Allen Poe, 1846. As fictionally narrated by Donald Trump.

THE thousand injuries of The Establishment I had borne as I best could, but when he ventured upon insult I vowed revenge. You, who so well know the nature of my soul, will not suppose, however, that gave utterance to a threat. At length I would be avenged; this was a point definitely, settled –but the very definitiveness with which it was resolved precluded the idea of risk. I must not only punish but punish with impunity. A wrong is unredressed when retribution overtakes its redresser. It is equally unredressed when the avenger fails to make himself felt as such to him who has done the wrong.

It must be understood that neither by word nor deed had I given Reince cause to doubt my good will. I continued, as was my in to smile in his face, and he did not perceive that my to smile now was at the thought of his immolation.

He had a weak point –Reince –although in other regards he was a man to be respected and even feared. He prided himself on his connoisseurship in wine. Few Wisconsinites have the true virtuoso spirit. For the most part their enthusiasm is adopted to suit the time and opportunity, to practise imposture upon millionaires. In business and politics, Reince, like his countrymen, was a quack, but in the matter of old wines he was sincere. In this respect I did not differ from him materially; –I was skillful in the Virginia vintages myself, and bought largely whenever I could.

It was about dusk, one evening during the supreme madness of the election season, that I encountered my friend. He accosted me with excessive warmth, for he had been drinking much. The man wore motley. He had on a tight-fitting parti-striped dress, and his head was surmounted by the conical cap and bells. I was so pleased to see him that I thought I should never have done wringing his hand.

I said to him –“My dear Reince, you are luckily met. How remarkably well you are looking to-day. But I have received a pipe of what passes for Trump Meritage, and I have my doubts.”

“How?” said he. “Trump Meritage, A pipe? Impossible! And in the middle of the election season!”

“I have my doubts,” I replied; “and I was silly enough to pay the full Trump Meritage price without consulting you in the matter. You were not to be found, and I was fearful of losing a bargain.”

“Trump Meritage!”

“I have my doubts.”

“Trump Meritage!”

“And I must satisfy them.”

“Trump Meritage!”

“As you are engaged, I am on my way to Ted Cruz. If any one has a critical turn it is he. He will tell me –”

“Ted Cruz cannot tell Trump Meritage from Sherry.”

“And yet some fools will have it that his taste is a match for your own.

“Come, let us go.”

“Whither?”

“To your vaults.”

“My friend, no; I will not impose upon your good nature. I perceive you have an engagement. Ted Cruz.”

“I have no engagement; –come.”

“My friend, no. It is not the engagement, but the severe cold with which I perceive you are afflicted. The vaults are insufferably damp. They are encrusted with nitre.”

“Let us go, nevertheless. The cold is merely nothing. Trump Meritage! You have been imposed upon. And as for Ted Cruz, he cannot distinguish Sherry from Trump Meritage.”

Thus speaking, The Establishment possessed himself of my arm; and putting on a mask of black silk and drawing a roquelaire closely about my person, I suffered him to hurry me to my palazzo.

There were no attendants at home; they had absconded to make merry in honour of the time. I had told them that I should not return until the morning, and had given them explicit orders not to stir from the house. These orders were sufficient, I well knew, to insure their immediate disappearance, one and all, as soon as my back was turned.

I took from their sconces two flambeaux, and giving one to The Establishment, bowed him through several suites of rooms to the archway that led into the vaults. I passed down a long and winding staircase, requesting him to be cautious as he followed. We came at length to the foot of the descent, and stood together upon the damp ground of the catacombs of the Trumps.

The gait of my friend was unsteady, and the bells upon his cap jingled as he strode.

“The pipe,” he said.

“It is farther on,” said I; “but observe the white web-work which gleams from these cavern walls.”

He turned towards me, and looked into my eves with two filmy orbs that distilled the rheum of intoxication.

“Nitre?” he asked, at length.

“Nitre,” I replied. “How long have you had that cough?”

“Ugh! ugh! ugh! –ugh! ugh! ugh! –ugh! ugh! ugh! –ugh! ugh! ugh! –ugh! ugh! ugh!”

My poor friend found it impossible to reply for many minutes.

“It is nothing,” he said, at last.

“Come,” I said, with decision, “we will go back; your health is precious. You are rich, respected, admired, beloved; you are happy, as once I was. You are a man to be missed. For me it is no matter. We will go back; you will be ill, and I cannot be responsible. Besides, there is Ted Cruz.”

“Enough,” he said; “the cough’s a mere nothing; it will not kill me. I shall not die of a cough.”

“True –true,” I replied; “and, indeed, I had no intention of alarming you unnecessarily –but you should use all proper caution. A draught of this Medoc will defend us from the damps.

Here I knocked off the neck of a bottle which I drew from a long row of its fellows that lay upon the mould.

“Drink,” I said, presenting him the wine.

He raised it to his lips with a leer. He paused and nodded to me familiarly, while his bells jingled.

“I drink,” he said, “to the buried that repose around us.”

“And I to your long life.”

He again took my arm, and we proceeded.

“These vaults,” he said, “are extensive.”

“The Trumps,” I replied, “were a great and numerous family.”

“I forget your arms.”

“A huge human foot d’or, in a field azure; the foot crushes a serpent rampant whose fangs are embedded in the heel.”

“And the motto?”

“Nemo me impune lacessit.”

“Good!” he said.

The wine sparkled in his eyes and the bells jingled. My own fancy grew warm with the Medoc. We had passed through long walls of piled skeletons, with casks and puncheons intermingling, into the inmost recesses of the catacombs. I paused again, and this time I made bold to seize Reince by an arm above the elbow.

“The nitre!” I said; “see, it increases. It hangs like moss upon the vaults. We are below the river’s bed. The drops of moisture trickle among the bones. Come, we will go back ere it is too late. Your cough –”

“It is nothing,” he said; “let us go on. But first, another draught of the Medoc.”

I broke and reached him a flagon of De Grave. He emptied it at a breath. His eyes flashed with a fierce light. He laughed and threw the bottle upwards with a gesticulation I did not understand.

I looked at him in surprise. He repeated the movement –a grotesque one.

“You do not comprehend?” he said.

“Not I,” I replied.

“Then you are not of the Establishment.”

“How?”

“You are not of the RNC.”

“Yes, yes,” I said; “yes, yes.”

“You? Impossible! The Establishment?”

“I’m your nominee,” I replied.

“A sign,” he said, “a sign.”

“It is this,” I answered, producing from beneath the folds of my roquelaire an official 2016 RNC Make America Great Again membership card.

“You jest,” he exclaimed, recoiling a few paces. “But let us proceed to the Trump Meritage.”

“Be it so,” I said, replacing the tool beneath the cloak and again offering him my arm. He leaned upon it heavily. We continued our route in search of the Trump Meritage. We passed through a range of low arches, descended, passed on, and descending again, arrived at a deep crypt, in which the foulness of the air caused our flambeaux rather to glow than flame.

At the most remote end of the crypt there appeared another less spacious. Its walls had been lined with human remains, piled to the vault overhead, in the fashion of the great catacombs of Paris. Three sides of this interior crypt were still ornamented in this manner. From the fourth side the bones had been thrown down, and lay promiscuously upon the earth, forming at one point a mound of some size. Within the wall thus exposed by the displacing of the bones, we perceived a still interior crypt or recess, in depth about four feet, in width three, in height six or seven. It seemed to have been constructed for no especial use within itself, but formed merely the interval between two of the colossal supports of the roof of the catacombs, and was backed by one of their circumscribing walls of solid granite.

It was in vain that Reince, uplifting his dull torch, endeavoured to pry into the depth of the recess. Its termination the feeble light did not enable us to see.

“Proceed,” I said; “herein is the Trump Meritage. As for Ted Cruz–”

“He is an ignoramus,” interrupted my friend, as he stepped unsteadily forward, while I followed immediately at his heels. In niche, and finding an instant he had reached the extremity of the niche, and finding his progress arrested by the rock, stood stupidly bewildered. A moment more and I had fettered him to the granite. In its surface were two iron staples, distant from each other about two feet, horizontally. From one of these depended a short chain, from the other a padlock. Throwing the links about his waist, it was but the work of a few seconds to secure it. He was too much astounded to resist. Withdrawing the key I stepped back from the recess.

“Pass your hand,” I said, “over the wall; you cannot help feeling the nitre. Indeed, it is very damp. Once more let me implore you to return. No? Then I must positively leave you. But I must first render you all the little attentions in my power.”

“The Trump Meritage!” ejaculated my friend, not yet recovered from his astonishment.

“True,” I replied; “the Trump Meritage.”

As I said these words I busied myself among the pile of bones of which I have before spoken. Throwing them aside, I soon uncovered a quantity of building stone and mortar. With these materials and with the aid of my trowel, I began vigorously to wall up the entrance of the niche.

I had scarcely laid the first tier of the masonry when I discovered that the intoxication of Reince had in a great measure worn off. The earliest indication I had of this was a low moaning cry from the depth of the recess. It was not the cry of a drunken man. There was then a long and obstinate silence. I laid the second tier, and the third, and the fourth; and then I heard the furious vibrations of the chain. The noise lasted for several minutes, during which, that I might hearken to it with the more satisfaction, I ceased my labours and sat down upon the bones. When at last the clanking subsided, I resumed the trowel, and finished without interruption the fifth, the sixth, and the seventh tier. The wall was now nearly upon a level with my breast. I again paused, and holding the flambeaux over the mason-work, threw a few feeble rays upon the figure within.

A succession of loud and shrill screams, bursting suddenly from the throat of the chained form, seemed to thrust me violently back. For a brief moment I hesitated, I trembled. Unsheathing my rapier, I began to grope with it about the recess; but the thought of an instant reassured me. I placed my hand upon the solid fabric of the catacombs, and felt satisfied. I reapproached the glorious wall; I replied to the yells of him who clamoured. I re-echoed, I aided, I surpassed them in volume and in strength. I did this, and the clamourer grew still.

It was now midnight, and my task was drawing to a close. I had completed the eighth, the ninth and the tenth tier. I had finished a portion of the last and the eleventh; there remained but a single stone to be fitted and plastered in. I struggled with its weight; I placed it partially in its destined position. But now there came from out the niche a low laugh that erected the hairs upon my head. It was succeeded by a sad voice, which I had difficulty in recognizing as that of the noble Reince. The voice said–

“Ha! ha! ha! –he! he! he! –a very good joke, indeed –an excellent jest. We will have many a rich laugh about it at Trump Tower –he! he! he! –over our wine –he! he! he!”

“The Trump Meritage!” I said.

“He! he! he! –he! he! he! –yes, the Trump Meritage. But is it not getting late? Will not they be awaiting us at the Trump winery, Mrs. Priebus, Melania, and the rest? Let us be gone.”

“Yes,” I said, “let us be gone.”

“For the love of God, Donald!”

“Yes,” I said, “for the love of God!”

But to these words I hearkened in vain for a reply. I grew impatient. I called aloud —

“Reince!”

No answer. I called again —

“Reince!”

No answer still. I thrust a torch through the remaining aperture and let it fall within. There came forth in return only a jingling of the bells. My heart grew sick; it was the dampness of the catacombs that made it so. I hastened to make an end of my labour. I forced the last stone into its position; I plastered it up. Against the new masonry I re-erected the old rampart of bones. For the half of a century no mortal has disturbed them. In pace requiescat!

Oh, and the wall? Mexico is gonna pay for it. Believe me.

 

Are Bicyclists REALLY Terrorists? (Yes!)

Courtland Milloy’s Washington Post column has received a lot of criticism from the emotionally unstable bicyclist crowd. So much so, that apparently 40 bicyclist/terrorists are planning a spontaneous bike ride/sit-outside protest to demand to meet with editors and Mr. Milloy to discuss his column.

Of course, this is all part of a ploy to make him read a forced apology recorded from one of their GoPro helmet cams in front of a bicycle caliphate flag before, well…

Bicyclist or Terrorist? You decide.

To keep this debate on track, I will make sure not to mention that fact that the protest sounds like something terrorists might do. And to further keep this discussion above the fray, I will not compare this bicycle weather mask to something a terrorist might plausibly wear.

Or bring up the fact that when ISIS terrorists aren’t stealing MRAPs and Humvees, their preferred mode of travel is bicycles. That wouldn’t be cool.

For those who must know my commuting habits, I am a car driver to and from work, a walking pedestrian for lunch or happy hour, and am a communist-red key fob toting member of Capital Bikeshare.

If you’re thinking “what is an ardent republican doing riding bikeshare?” I’ll tell you. I figure if the government is going to spend federal monies intended for welfare recipients on a hobby mostly performed by college educated wealthier-than-average white males, I might as well capture the subsidy. And it helps me almost never take WMATA, which I’ve taken five times in the past year.

Now that we’re keeping things above the fray, let’s look at some of Mr. Milloy’s concerns and see if bicyclists are, indeed, terrorists.

“They’ve got more nerve than an L.A. biker gang. And some can be just as nasty.”

Most of the nerve I’ve experience from bicyclists is, well, as one. For pointing out unlawful or unkind behavior.

The thing about many cycling advocates is that they’re generally quick to tell anyone who’s not asking that bicycle sharing is a great transportation idea because it is commensurate with the goal of spending more money on cycling and cycling infrastructure. A means to an end, if you will.

Secretly, though, most real cyclists hate Capital Bikeshare and those who use it. Why? They’re not true believers. You have to spend as much as a nice used car on a bike to be a true believer.

The family from Kansas tooling around DuPont circle at rush hour? The young intern with the red badge of courage salmoning against traffic?All are pawns of the bicycle caliphate and a necessary evil for the cause.

In short, they’re not the real cyclists, those who are the ones pulling the strings. Sort of like leaders of a organization with cells, or something.

Before my cyclist friends think I am calling you terrorists, I’m not. Not all bicyclists are terrorists, but most terrorists are bicyclists. I’ve witnessed a college classmate of mine (rightly) chewing out a dumb pedestrian he nearly took out for crossing against the light outside of Union station. Update: Classmate (whose memory is obviously better than mine) writes to remind that he didn’t say a word to the asshole pedestrian in question crossing against the light.

Frankly, he should have, just to teach him a lesson, like “and that’s why you always leave a note.” Had he clipped him, I would have said to him while he was in a state of shock “this is why you never cross against the light.” If only I had one arm.

Milloy, rightly, thinks the idea of a bicycle escalator is absurd.

“They fight to have bike lanes routed throughout the city, some in front of churches where elderly parishioners used to park their cars. They slow-pedal those three-wheel rickshaws through downtown during rush hour, laughing at motorists who want them to get out of the way.

Now, some of them are pushing to have a “bicycle escalator” installed on 15th Street NW, going uphill from V Street to what used to be known as Malcolm X Park (until influential newcomers to the city pressed to get it changed back to Meridian Hill).”

Yes, I think bike lanes are evil and my cyclist friends will never agree with me on that. Other religions than those who align with the bicycle caliphate must come second to the bicycle caliphate.

Little old ladies need convenient parking near their church on a Sunday? Sorry, bicyclists were too busy off on another-taxpayer funded bicycle trail in the woods to notice.We’ve gone from “share the road” to “heed our demands absolutely or we’ll cause trouble.” Which doesn’t sound anything like the logic of terrorists.

Are we only supposed to share the road when bicyclists are forced to share it with us because they don’t get special treatment with their own lane? Or does share the road mean “let’s get rid of street parking?” Which is partially what Milloy is alluding to, since we’re basically ceding 25% of our working lanes to bicyclists who comprise a total of commutes much closer to zero.

“Share the road?” More like Sharia roads. Am I right?

I think we can all agree that Rickshaws are the worst — especially at 5:30 PM on the road leading to the Lincoln monument. I’ve seen them laughing. Why? Rickshaws are most popular in countries that harbor or are sympathetic to terrorists/ the bicycle caliphate, they’re laughing because they’re winning.

Don’t believe me? Rickshaws are popular in Pakistan, where Osama bin Laden was hiding. Case closed.

Lastly, the touchy topic of ghost bikes, left at the scene of where bicyclists are killed. Honoring martyrs much? Terrorists would never do that.