The Washington Post

Instead of the Trump October Surprise

This is less surprising than alarming. (Trump Organization/REUTERS)

I hope you had a nice sandwich. I hope you went outside and looked at all the trees in their fall splendor. I hope you telephoned your grandmother and told her that you loved her. I hope you read a great book. I hope you met a cat you liked. I hope you complimented a stranger on an elevator and didn’t have to make conversation for too many floors afterwards.

I am contractually obligated to Pay Attention To This Sort of Thing, so I hope you had a nice day.

I hope you smelled a flower. I hope you loved and were loved in return. I hope you loved and your love was refused but you got a nice sonnet out of it. I hope you read a limerick or squinted or took an antacid, all of which, while not delightful, are not actively unpleasant activities.

I hope you aren’t reading this article with Donald Trump in its headline and you are off about your busy, productive, delightful life, doing all the exciting and remarkable things you do.

If you must know about Wednesday’s “bombshell,” what Donald Trump (looking prematurely orange) announced today was that he will donate $5 million to a charity of President Obama’s choosing “if the president releases his college records and applications, and if he gives his passport applications and records.”

Only Donald Trump could figure out a way to turn a charitable donation into a threat.

I don’t know why this is vital, unless Donald Trump actually excelled in college and is now disappointed to find how little that has affected his life afterward. That is one factor that might lead someone to make big fusses about college grades. Or it could be his continued crackpottery and dire hinting about alien origins and affirmative action.

But I hope you haven’t followed this very closely. The only October news on offer was that it is October and the Donald continues incorrigible. We didn’t need the build-up for that. But we got it anyway. Trump may be an execrable fellow with an excrescence on his head, but he is unfortunately possessed of the two handiest attributes for survival in the Public Eye: money and the uncanny ability to attract attention.

So I hope you had a nice day. I hope you drank life to the lees. I hope you danced as though some people were watching but they were tolerant souls who wouldn’t mind. I hope you didn’t click on this at all.

Alexandra Petri writes the ComPost blog, offering a lighter take on the news and opinions of the day. She is the author of "A Field Guide to Awkward Silences".


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