A few years back we watched a small, amusing movie called “Adventureland.” Starred Jesse Eisenberg, Kristin Stewart and…I forget. It was about a recent college graduate who can’t find a job in his major (Renaissance studies) and ends up at a second-rate amusement park, in a “seasonal job” with a lot of co-workers who are more or less the same age. It was scratching in my brain for the first part of the summer until I remembered why every day reminded me of it, at least a little bit. Not that our waterpark was entirely Adventureland, but there were distinct elements, mainly because for the first time in my life since I was a teenager, I was working with teenagers. It was kind of a shock, but also lots of fun.
The endless energy, oh my god. One day I was sitting on a post next to a crowd-control barrier that was about, I’d estimate, 40 inches off the ground. One of my fellow guards walked up to it and effortlessly leaped over it, box jump-style. Like a deer. At the end of the day, when I’d be dragging my ass to whatever dinner Alan had prepared for us, they’d be on to the second shift. They could walk in hungover and refresh themselves with a short dip in the pool. It was something to see.
On the other hand, I had skills they didn’t, for instance: Telling time. I learned early on that if someone asks, “What time is it” and you answer “ten ’til,” they will stare blankly until you say “two-fifty.” On the other hand, they could communicate volumes thumb-typing their thoughts on their phones, using a million abbreviations that made their texts as hard to understand as hieroglyphics. But it was lovely, lovely, being in their midst after 40-some years of working with so-called adults. Their amusing slang, their incredible knowledge gaps (“man, Hawaii is really out there, isn’t it?”), the way they … well, let’s put it this way: No one knows shit about anyone else’s life. It made me think of the newspaper business, when we’d try to figure out what readers wanted, without talking about whether they were even readers in the first place. We all live in bubbles. It’s good to get out of your own, even if you have to go around for a few weeks as the old-ass white lady in the lifeguard crew.
In a few hours, I have to get up for an early workout. In the meantime, here’s some bloggage:
The bloodbath of the Michigan GOP, thanks to fealty to Donald Trump:
The Michigan Republican Party is starving for cash. A group of prominent activists — including a former statewide candidate — was hit this month with felony charges connected to a bizarre plot to hijack election machines. And in the face of these troubles, suspicion and infighting have been running high. A recent state committee meeting led to a fistfight, a spinal injury and a pair of shattered dentures.
This turmoil is one measure of the way Donald J. Trump’s lies about the 2020 election have rippled through his party. While Mr. Trump has just begun to wrestle with the consequences of his fictions — including two indictments related to his attempt to overturn the 2020 results — the vast machine of activists, donors and volunteers that power his party has been reckoning with the fallout for years.
Couldn’t happen to a nicer bunch of crazy people, if you ask me.
I hope you’re in Adventureland yourselves right now. See you soon.