story time: presidential edition

adventures-in-theatre:

  • so you know how everyone has a story
  • you know
  • like the story
  • like if you’re at a party and someone turns to you and says, tell the story
  • and you know exactly what they mean
  • the story
  • well 
  • i have a story
  • and not unlike most good stories, it involves three key components:
  • barack obama
  • pre-2008 reebok sneakers 
  • and the absolute earth-shattering horror you can only feel after making the worst mistake of your life 
  • so here we go
  • it all began eight years ago
  • (i was a gangly child then) 
  • and barack obama came to town
  • (when i was a young girl)
  • (my father took me out into the city)
  • (to see the president of the united states, obama) 
  • (barack obama)
  • except it wasn’t the city but where my parents worked 
  • and my mother was hired to take pictures of obama shaking the hands of others
  • (rich people)
  • (ceo’s) 
  • (people who didn’t wear reeboks to meet the president)
  • so i skipped school to see obama
  • (naturally) 
  • (but my teacher was a republican so it still counted as an absence) 
  • and the adventure begun
  • but as i soon learned
  • most of the adventure was waiting in a large room with my mother and some secret service men for roughly eight hours 
  • because there is no timing with obama
  • (barack obama)
  • no one can know when obama is supposed to be there
  • (barack obama)
  • there is no, like, obama warning system
  • (barack)
  • it’s just that one second he’s not there
  • and the next second
  • he’s there
  • (barack obama)
  • so it was eight hours
  • and i remember nothing from those eight hours except for when one of the secret service men tried to talk to me
  • ‘how are your studies,’ he said
  • how’s school, he probably meant
  • but i didn’t understand at the time
  • i was a gangly child
  • i was scared
  • he was tall
  • (i cried)
  • and then all of a sudden
  • (about eight hours into the eight hours)
  • he was there
  • (barack obama)
  • he was beauty 
  • he was grace
  • he was
  • (barack obama)
  • he walked into the room
  • he wasn’t wearing reeboks 
  • (i noticed)
  • (i began to feel i’d made a mistake)
  • my mother took pictures of him shaking the hands of others
  • (rich people)
  • (ceo’s)
  • (none of whom were wearing reeboks) 
  • and at the very end
  • obama began to leave 
  • (barack obama)
  • i was happy enough to have graced his presence
  • but my parents
  • my parents were not happy
  • they needed more
  • ‘mr. obama,’ they called
  • and they pointed to me
  • ‘of course,’ obama said
  • (barack obama)
  • he’s so nice, i thought
  • and then it hit me
  • oh no, i thought
  • oh yes, my parents thought at some point, probably
  • i’m obama, obama thought, most likely
  • i was going to meet obama
  • up close and personal
  • obama
  • (barack obama)
  • the rest was a blur
  • and the next thing i knew i was there
  • with obama
  • (barack obama)
  • his hand was shaking my hand
  • his hand was on my hand
  • (nothing had ever felt so right)
  • ‘so what’s you’re name,’ he asked 
  • (with obama’s voice)
  • (because he was obama)
  • (barack obama)
  • and i almost forgot but i told him
  • and he said it correctly even though it’s weird 
  • (obama said my name)
  • and we were off to a good start
  • how was i to know
  • how was i to know the horrors to come
  • ‘so how old are you,’ he asked then
  • and that’s when this dream became a nightmare
  • ‘twelve,’ i said
  • a seemingly innocent answer
  • but here’s the thing
  • i was 
  • thirteen. 
  • (thirteen)
  • (13)
  • (12+1)
  • (16-3)
  • (13.0)
  • (Thirteen.) 
  • what have i done, i thought
  • (panic! at the election)
  • https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m3LGopSVju4
  • i still don’t know why i did it
  • did i really forget? 
  • did i do it for the thrill of the chase?
  • to see if i could?
  • maybe
  • but obama didn’t know
  • i did it, i thought, i lied
  • i lied to the president of the united states
  • i pulled it off
  • the greatest lie in history
  • the greatest heist
  • (i didn’t know what a heist was)
  • (i was thirteen)
  • ‘oh so you’re in 6th grade then,’ obama said
  • shit.
  • i was so close
  • shit what do i say, i thought
  • the journey is not over
  • the nightmare rages on
  • what do i say
  • i open my mouth to say, yes
  • ‘no,’ i say
  • what the fuck, i think 
  • ‘no i’m in 7th grade” 
  • (because i was)
  • maybe he won’t know, i thought
  • but he did.
  • (obama’s been around the block)
  • (obama knows what’s up)
  • ‘so you’re ahead of your class, then’ he said
  • (i wasn’t)
  • (i failed basic math at least twice by this time)
  • ‘yes,’ i said, just wanting this nightmare to be over
  • just wanting the lie to end
  • for obama to call me out on my shit and arrest me
  • to spend the rest of my youth locked away in prison where i couldn’t hurt anyone any more with my lies
  • i waited
  • i waited for arrest
  • but arrest didn’t come
  • and that was even worse.
  • obama trusted me
  • obama thought i was a good kid
  • obama thought i was ahead of my class 
  • (ahead of my class) 
  • i let him down
  • i let obama down
  • (barack obama)
  • i watched him leave
  • https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qYNH1baA_7k
  • obama, i mouthed out after him
  • obama i’m sorry
  • (he trusted me)
  • why did i do it, you ask
  • i don’t know
  • after all these years
  • i still don’t know
  • it still haunts me
  • i still wake up at night, shaking, and i think
  • i lied to the president of the united states
  • (twice)
  • the photographic evidence of my nightmare hangs in my father’s office
  • i’m smiling through my pain
  • i’m wearing reeboks
  • obama is not
  • (barack obama)
  • i hope that someday, after obama’s retirement 
  • we can put this all behind us and start anew 
  • start fresh
  • (no more lies)
  • (no more deceit)
  • but i’m not naive
  • i know that we can never really go back
  • back to the way things were
  • five seconds after i met him but five seconds before i lied
  • but i can dream
  • i can hope
  • obama
  • obama i’m sorry
  • (barack obama)
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