In 1934 Gertrude Stein was on a book tour of her native America after 30 years living abroad in Paris. After arriving in San Francisco, she decided to take a ferry across the bay to Oakland to visit her childhood farm and the house she grew up in on 13th Avenue, but when she got there, she found the farm gone and the house razed. She wrote:

….there was no there there…. Ah, Thirteenth Avenue was the same it was shabby and overgrown…. Not of course the house, the house the big house and the big garden and the eucalyptus trees and the rose hedge naturally were not there any longer existing, what was the use…

You may think it strange, but the words “there was no there there” conjured up a fantasy-picture, a vision in my mind, of an imaginary scene wherein a latter-day Gertrude Stein went looking for Donald Trump decades after they had been childhood friends, only to find that the boy she’d known had not merely been raised but razed, and there was no there there….

If you’ve ever given much thought to why people turn out as they do, perhaps the above whimsy may not seem so strange after all. Obviously, we’re not all destined to become men and women of unbounded fulfillment (however that may be defined), but was Stein looking for a man grown so full of himself, so far removed from there, what was the use? How does a man who would be king — or at least President — become almost a caricature, a pretender, if you will, to the prone, meaning those prone to embrace simple answers to complex issues/prone to settle for simplistic bombast over substance? His bandwagon may have many jumpers-on, but, to quote Warren Buffet, A public-opinion poll is no substitute for thought.

Humor and satire being my preferred manner of dealing with the theater of the absurd, I seldom write seriously about politics/politicians….but, with The Donald, seriously:  Where is the substance? Is there a there there?

In the end, it matters not, Trump deriders. You’ve heard of snake oil. Deal with it!



  1. arekhill1 says:

    At least the man has courage, Sr. Muse. I have seen pictures of the candidate in a baseball cap. Anybody who would plop a baseball cap over the engineering feat that is The Donald’s hair must have that.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. arekhill1 says:

    Or in other words, there may be no there there, but there’s hair there. There you go.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. mistermuse says:

    Hair today, gone tomorrow (if America’s lucky, nomination-wise).

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Don Frankel says:

    So Gertrude Stein used it first eh. Well that’s like the line. “I’ll be back.” That is attributed to Arhnuld. I’m watching that old John Ford Western Fort Apache and John Wayne as Captain York rides out to save Colonel Thursday/Henry Fonda but before he charges off he says. “I’ll be back.”

    Besides, the Clintons use that line all the time. Usually about the scandalous charges leveled against them but who knew they were quoting Old Gertie?

    Hey how’s about. “Hair is hair, is hair”? But everyone shouldn’t get too excited about leading in the polls. It’s not the same as actually getting votes.


  5. mistermuse says:

    I think you’re right about leading in the polls now, Don. When the field of 17 candidates eventually narrows down to 3 or 4, 20% isn’t going to seem that impressive even if he doesn’t slip below that level by then.


  6. Don Frankel says:

    Like I said about him somewhere I forget but it’s that he’s big, he’s orange and he says outrageous things. Hell I write about him because he’s in the news. Who wants to write about Lindsay Graham?


  7. mistermuse says:

    Actually, Lindsay Graham is probably one of the more sensible Republicans in the field, but you’re right – who cares?

    Liked by 1 person

  8. BroadBlogs says:

    He probably ran just to get attention and was surprised by how well he did. But he’ll probably never get more than 1/9 of the US vote.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. mistermuse says:

    Some say they like Trump because he says what he thinks. Well, any idiot can say what he thinks. By that standard, any idiot is qualified to be President.

    Liked by 2 people

  10. mistermuse says:

    Merci, Mel@nie! Having not yet heard the news this morning, I very much appreciate your link to the story about the “American heroes in France!”

    Liked by 1 person

  11. pjlazos says:

    Love it! You must have tremendous fun writing this blog. Good for you!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. mistermuse says:

    Thank you. Writing this blog IS a lot of fun, but also takes a lot of thought and time….but then, that’s usually the price to be paid to create something worthwhile. If it were easy, it would be hard to feel much satisfaction.


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