As you run away, your shadow tries to separate and return. Drag him! (iStock)
Columnist

I am very, very sad to inform you that the election is over! I do not want this to be true any more than you do, but, you see, something quite terrible has happened. On Monday, the Democratic National Committee tweeted a creaky meme urging people to tell Donald Trump “Boy Bye” and download an exclusive wallpaper. In a word: it is all happening again! It is all happening again, and we have been thrust back into the nightmare!

You know the one I mean. It is the one from which you wake up shouting, “No, I don’t want to Pokémon Go to the polls! I want to regular go to the polls!” and having torn the blanket to shreds in your anxiety. You remain uneasily awake for hours, clenching your fists and muttering at the ceiling, before you sink into a pool of chilly slumber and the dream returns.

You are in a wilderness of memes. It is a whole mood.

The oceans are rising and the earth quakes. The president does nothing. Huddled for shelter against this devastation, the people of America glance to their phones for some sign of hope. “America is QUAKING” the DNC has tweeted. “These glaciers have more drip than you.”

There is fire engulfing the coast. “CALIFORNIA: Stay lit fam.”

Drones hum in the sky, carrying death. Territories are disputed. “The Kurds? Iconic! We -stan.”

Zachary Taylor has vanished. “Whig, snatched!”

A tsunami leaves devastation in its wake. “Text surfbordt to 43667." There is no way out of these memes. They are a baseball cap turned unconvincingly backwards on a human head, forever.

“Tiktok a Fortnite dance to 43666 to receive an exclusive video as though your fave were included in Taylor Swift’s new music video!” What is this even for?

You get up and drink some water. Sleep comes again, but rest eludes you.

In your dream, ICE presides over death at the border and the president knows no regard for law. But what will get him is being told he is a “bad doggo, 0/10.” He does not even go here. We do not stan. He is not iconic. This will be what does it!

There is an impossible alchemy to this. Being cool and authentic, as far as you can tell, is a feat only achievable by a human being. Once a branded entity attempts it, this magic withers and dies as the Vine.

On the one hand, such remarks are unifying, and maybe there is something in that. Everyone is upset! Something must be right! And trying things is good! But you wonder also whether it is really absolutely the best approach for a political party to try to be hip and relatable online, whether it does not seem to be a joke about the wrong thing, and whether anyone wants a free custom wallpaper of Donald Trump, anyway.

You wake, you think, and go lurching to a shelter of twigs, barely eluding what seems to be a posed picture of people standing in two neat rows at headquarters — “felt cute might delete later.”

Maybe, if you stay in the woods, no one will reach you with their well-intended memes. Maybe you can shake this feeling of immediate, leaden despair, akin to the one you get giving your mother instructions over the phone about how to install the wireless router.

Sleep claims you again. From the bottomless pit that is the remains of your country speaks no one.

No one:

Absolutely no one:

The DNC: Trump is not bae.

Did you know the president is not the GOAT?

You turn over and pull the covers down.

You just want this taken seriously.

yOu JuST wAnt tHiS TAkeN SeRioUSLy.

Read more from Alexandra Petri:

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