the brian

When I was growing up, I was often in the same class as Brian. He was puny. He was dim. He was weird looking. One could have said those things about most of us at that age, truth be told, so Brian further distinguished himself by being unremittingly hostile. Brian employed flamboyant assholery in hopes of making the world cower before him. He insulted people constantly. He talked about how stupid we all were, about what pussies we all were, about our general inferiority in the face of his obvious greatness. He wasn't smart enough to craft an actually hurtful insult, so he stuck with the classics. "You're very very dumb," he would say, convinced he had just flayed someone's soul and congratulating himself for his wit and bravery. It was unremitting. It was, in fact, all I remember of him. He was a noisy lap dog barking ferociously at every passersby, to whom he was otherwise of zero consequence. Brian employed volume and venom as flak, hoping to confuse our radars. It didn't work. We knew what he was then, and he remains my benchmark for dim-witted, noisy frauds now.

When a certain presidential candidate speaks, all I hear is Brian. I can hear little else. I think, in fact, the exact same things that I did then. Tough guys don't really go around talking about how tough they are. Ditto smart guys. Or successful guys.

What a bottomless well of well-earned insecurity. I look forward to the resulting constitutional crisis when Brian loses an election.