September 26, 2012
As we taxied to the gate one hour late (“someone in Memphis finally answered the phone”) I asked my young seat mate if he was coming home to Peoria. He said no, he was flying in from Salt Lake City to make a speech. I said hey, that’s Romney country. He said no, I’m a Mormon and trust me, everybody in our church despises Romney, he’s such a jerk.
Without further prompting, my new friend volunteered a little story. It seems that during the fabled Olympics bailed out (nice word) by Romney a few years ago, the road to a mountain venue became so jammed with traffic that the boss himself drove out to the trouble spot to solve the snarl. He ended up leaping out of his car and confronting the traffic officer in charge, slinging around the “f-bomb” in the process.
When the media caught up with Romney the next day, he claimed the incident never happened and that he’d never used the f-bomb in his life. The traffic officer then produced a tape recording of the verbal attack in which the Republican nominee-to-be used the f-bomb a couple of hundred times.
My traveling companion went on to opine that Romney was running such an inept, dishonest. embarrassing campaign that we wouldn’t see another Mormon nominated for at least a hundred years. I comforted him by volunteering that if Obama gets re-elected, it may make it impossible for another Baptist to get elected for at least a century and that besides, Armageddon may likely may have come and gone by then.
He laughed, I laughed. He asked after my religion. I agnosticated, allowing only that I’m a non-believer who believes in believers. He apologized for using foul language himself during our brief conversation; I apologized for not using any. We shook hands and parted.
I thought he seemed comforted. I wasn’t so sure about myself.