When the Banshee Screamed for Thatcher 2.0

I didn’t notice it at first. I was under the all-consuming headphones, demolishing my remaining hearing with an album called Diamond Hoo Ha, deep within the selfish recesses of my own warped and spoiled suburban mind. It was the night of yet another dipshit, two-bit primary in some states, and an even skimpier night of civic duty here on the Central Coast, so the low whine was indistinguishable from Gaz Coombs and Measure G and Proposition 99 and the rest of existence’s dull roar.

Then I recognized it, processed the foul frequency in my debilitating cerebrum, and promptly dismissed it. Popular vote Florida Michigan in to win why’d he back when I was president blah blah fucking blah. Another primary is lost and yet won. Another goal post is moved and yet there are still points scored and funds raised and egos stroked and babies kissed and blood sucked and brains fried in this stupefying death march of a Democratic primary. The ciphers croaked on. The mirrors kept reflecting. The desperate projection couldn’t stop thinking about tomorrow.

The phone rang and it was my brother. “Dude, are you watching this? What the fuck is up with her, man?” Cue long discussion mostly centered on my complete inability, at this late date, to summon up the righteous fury needed for actual celebration. It wasn’t over yet, I told him. Couldn’t be. The streets ran thick with Bubbas and soccer moms still ruled the earth. Surely.

“I don’t think so, Keir,” he said. No, trust me, bro. The deadened impulse of Sloth is strong with me, and lo, I know it when it beckons. That scream you hear is just the result of another flesh wound, another cut in the hundreds of thousands inflicted upon the staggering hulk of hubristic inertia that is this primary. No one is safe from its vicious tentacles. Hell, it even got me, didn’t it? Me, who supposedly knew better, vowed never again to so emotionally invest myself in this farce of role-playing we Americans call an “election,” and swore to avoid the giddy, euphoric pseudo-high when History bashes down your door, kicks a room full of ass, and knows it doesn’t need to even bother with taking names, since they’ll be offered up with orgiastic glee.

“Fine,” he said, shrugging through the phone. “Go on with your sorry-assed self and szlvrealegubvn uidv.”

What? I didn’t catch that last bit.

“I said vbddsaerareiosdc fe—”

There was a split-second of silence, and then Bryn’s voice was cut off by a violent “EEEEEEEEAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!!!!!!!!!!!”

The low whine had suddenly crested into a horrendous spiraling shriek of immense power. It cut across the spacious skies and purple mountains and amber waves with the force of a comet, dissolving everything in its path to smoking cinders of dark matter.

“OMFGOMFGOMFG!!!!!” I thought, and instantly knew I was beaten. Thinking in fucking acronyms was the surest sign of relapse. I’d gone straight through the seven steps and crashed head-on into the concrete wall of election junkiedom yet again. I knew that voice. I knew it was Her, and that she was in terrible, terrible pain, and I couldn’t help but sneer a little. It was bad, bad, baaaad mojo—the worst is always involved when you revel in another’s pain—but I succumbed to it with a willing grace I never knew I had. I clicked off the phone and tossed the headphones across the room, yelling with maniacal abandon as a demented counter to the globe-encircling shriek, which had only intensified with the passing minutes.

It was not to be silenced by the venal chatterings of the media, nor the meandering wheezings of Straight Talk that farted out of some listless hall in West Bumfucksville. No, neither was it to be denied by the ecstatic paeans of desperate joy gushing out of Minneapolis, where The Annoited One sang his best one-note concerto to himself. No. The Shriek conquered all, and in doing so it conquered Death itself, lurching through the astral plane and beyond the bleating fellatio of superdelegates and millionare pundits and disgraced lobbyists and lonely polling place workers. The Shriek gloried in its own Un-Death, reveled in its sub-natural existence, stuck between dimensions and forever imprisoned within its own gargantuan ego.

And somewhere, the Falkland Islands shuddered in fear. Stephen Patrick Morrissey felt the eyes of the psychopath on his back, Gerry Adams acquiesced to his 3000th migraine, and Old Dutch grinned stupidly beneath the walls of his mausolean library. But they were all of them mistaken, for it was not Maggie who had disturbed their ancient slumber. It was not She of the Iron Granny-Pants who rumbled the stratospheric rafters with her scream.

No. It was the First Lady, fat and swollen with an Everest of campaign debt, and she was Singing.