Donald Trump gave his first State of the Union tonight, and, as with all accomplishments he stumbles into, he was cartoonishly pleased with himself about it. For much of the speech he subjected the American people not only to absolute lies and horrifying stories of far-right activism presented as foundational morality, but to his constant, dripping, slow-served applause. He was clapping for himself.
The clamor didn't go unnoticed, especially since the president managed to clap directly into the microphone for most of his speech, resulting in a bizarre water torture effect, wherein the only thing worse than the clapping was the sound of his voice, and the only thing worse than his voice was the clap. As Trump praised ICE for tearing apart families and continued to spread myths about an unstoppable violence that comes explicitly with immigration, it felt like the only relief could be the drone of his obviously drenched palms beating together, but as soon as it came back you were desperate for it to end. When Trump stumbled through a story that attempted to paint North Korea as an enemy not only of America but of America's Christianity, the only thing that could stop him was the applause he gave himself, but even then the clanging only felt like an echo of his alien pronunciations of words most humans use every day. When he presented coal mining as perhaps the most sensual job of all, the entire nation just had to stand awkwardly until he pounded his fists together for all the coal jobs that don't exist. Nothing ever ceased, and everything was stressful.
The KKK really liked it, though.