Hail to the Chief
Today I streamed last night’s episode of SNL. I’ve been faithfully watching the show since high school, around the time of its debut (I’m kind of old). Back in those days, before the internet, DVR, VCR and the automobile :), I watched “Saturday Night Live” live, and so I was always bleary-eyed the next morning in Sunday school. With toothpicks in my eyes, I still picked up a couple big-picture/God things, sometimes from my own dad standing at the pulpit. Back then as now, I liked to laugh and I also liked to glean what I could about the big picture. Last night’s show featured this skit about a hailstorm, which made me laugh out loud for many reasons, one being that I, too, was caught in a hailstorm yesterday.
Yesterday’s hailstorm seemed like dramatic poetry considering the presidential election announcement earlier in the day. I had been waiting for a break in the weather to go on a ride and (un)clearly, my iPhone weather app failed me badly. I had headed out for my ride and thirty minutes later was caught in a bizarro, sudden blustery wind, sideways rain, pelting hailstorm of Cecil B. DeMille proportions which, in some moments, made it nearly impossible to propel my bike forward. It felt par-for-the-course-apocalyptic, like much of 2020 so far. Drenched and shivering, I turned my bike around and pushed my pedals through…and as I got nearer to my neighborhood, the sun pierced the clouds and served up a most epic, dramatic, conflicted sky complete with a jaw-dropping double rainbow with hints of more colorful curves behind, like never-ending vibrations across the sky—endless promises beyond the beyond.
Considering the news of the day, it was a perfect metaphor. The dark skies, the struggle, the sun, and the rainbow appearing even though the sky was still conflicted—split. All of it existing at once.
Like us. It is a dramatic, conflicted time.
We all stand under the same sky and we are split in two. Can we reach each other?
Depending on who you supported during this election, you may not exactly feel like standing for the presidential anthem to welcome our new president. You may not like the new chief.
There are many things we can do to get us through if that’s what we want. Some more effective than others.
I say, watch funny things. Lighten up where you can. Find the humor. It can heal. Find the poetry. It can make things beautiful. Listen to your elders, you can learn something. Exercise. Get on your bike and find the muscle in those legs of yours to pedal through. Believe they will take you home. They just might.
As for me, I’m choosing to look up. I’m counting on those numberless, endless ribbons in the sky and the promises of a new day. I’m choosing to look out around me—to believe our Gumby arms can reach each another…if we stretch.
Using all the strength I have, I know it’s still not enough. My trust is not in my arms or my legs, or even things that make me smile. My faith is in the painter of the rainbows—the one beyond the beyond—and somehow at the same time, right here where I stand. And so I hail to the Chief.