It really was a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad week. It all started with death of Leonard Cohen, then reached its peak with the realisation that America had passed on the opportunity to elect their first woman POTUS (President of the United States) and, instead, voted for a white supremacist, climate denying, narcissistic thug to occupy the Oval Office.
I’m not American but I feel like I’m in mourning for the USA. Everyone’s playing Leonard Cohen; his soaring, melancholic lyrics are the soundtrack to this sense of global collective grief. There’s a loss of trust, sadness and shock that Americans seem to have failed this critical test.
The choice was so stark, to the rest of the world, it looked like a ‘no-brainer’ (as they love to say in the US). But a super qualified, smart, prepared woman got beaten by a sexual predator and conman. How to explain this to the kids, particularly little girls. Even worse, all those little Hillarys, nerdy girls studying in the library. Give it up girls, you aren’t ever going to be better than a mediocre white man, or even a black hole of humanity, like Donald Trump. For all those people out there who might like to tell me what a flawed candidate Hillary was, please, get in the bin. It’s like Leonard Cohen said ‘Forget your perfect offering. There is a crack in everything, that’s how the light gets in’.
There’s no up side to this. I know people are on the streets protesting but it seems inescapable that, unless he’s impeached by his own party, Donald Trump will be the next President of the United States. For the next four years.
It wasn’t meant to be like this—last week before the Trumpocalypse hit, I made a cake to take over to a friend’s place to watch the election coverage. It was an awesome cake: orange and chocolate chunk! I was going to post it this week to celebrate Hillary’s win. I had a meeting at 3pm Australian time, just when it was breaking that Trump was almost certain to win. People were standing round the foyer watching the television in horror. I imagine this is what it was like when Kennedy was shot. Complete shock that something like this could happen in America. I watched Hillary’s concession speech the next day and cried—a decent, hardworking woman beaten by a reality TV host. A Putinesque, vulgarian oligarch. What a giant step backwards for humanity.
I didn’t want to post anything this week, it all seemed so pointless, but the sun kept coming up and dinner still needed to be made. There’s a Zen saying: ‘Before enlightenment, chop wood, carry water. After enlightenment, chop wood, carry water’. I’m adapting it to the times—before Trumpocalypse, chop vegetables, make dinner, care for each other. After Trumpocalypse, chop vegetables, make dinner, care for each other.
Chop enough vegetables, make enough dinners, care enough and we all might just make it through this madness with our faculties and sense of decency intact. I’m not sure of the order of the seven stages of grief but I’m pretty sure I’m reaching anger now. I think I’ll hang round in anger for a while. Maintain the rage. It’s important to keep a sense of rage and even outrage in the months and years ahead.
President Trump just sounds wrong on so many levels. On 21 January 2017, the day after Donald Trump’s inauguration, there will be a million women marching on Washington DC. All around the world women will be with them in solidarity. Because let’s make this clear, Donald, you may have won the election on an arcane technicality, but it takes more to become a President. The women of the world are bearing witness. We are watching you. We won’t be forgiving and we won’t be forgetting anything.
Hillary Rodham Clinton – First Lady of the United States 1993-2001, U.S. Senator 2001- 2008, 67th United States Secretary of State 2009-2013, First woman major party nominee for the President of the United States 2016.
This salad is from one of my favourite cookbooks Community and features two of my favourite foods black beans and roasted pumpkin. When a lying sleazebag becomes leader of the most powerful nation on earth, it’s important to keep eating our vegetables. Keep it wholesome. Keep chopping vegetables, making dinner and caring for each other.
Barbecued corn and roasted butternut pumpkin with black beans and jalapeno sour cream
Adapted from Community by Hetty Mckinnon
- 1 butternut pumpkin (1 kg) Peeled and cut into 2 cm cubes
- 3–4 tablespoons olive oil
- Sea salt and black pepper
- 5 corn cobs, husks removed
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 500 grams cooked black bean, drained (about 2 cans)
- 1/2 cup pumpkin seeds, toasted
- 1/2 cup coriander leaves
- 50 grams Manchego or Pecorino Romano, grated
- 1 lime, quartered
- 1 garlic clove, grated
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 2 teaspoon white wine vinegar
- 2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 5 tablespoon extra virgn olive oil
- 1/4 cup of coriander leaves
Jalapeno sour cream
- 300 mls sour cream
- 1 Jalepeno chilli, deseeded and finely chopped
- Preheat oven to 200°C. Place pumpkin cubes on baking sheet toss with 2–3 tablespoons of olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Bake for 30 about minutes or until tender. Remove from oven and set aside.
- Heat a griddle or barbecue to high, drizzle the remaining olive oil over the corn and place on the griddle, turning it every minute until until all sides are cooked and slightly charred. Allow corn to cool and slice kernels off the cob. Sprinkle corn kernels and sprinkle with pinch of paprika, salt and pepper,
- Make vinaigrette by whisking together all ingredients.
- Arrange black beans, pumpkin and corn on a platter. Pour over vinaigrette and toss through well. Sprinkle pumpkin seeds, coriander leaves and grated cheese over the top. Serve with lime wedges and a dollop of sour cream.
- If you want some carbs on the side, serve with some crusty bread or Spanish rice.