George Michael + A Trump Christmas Carol

George Michael was dead; to begin. And that’s a very sad thing for those of us of an 80s vintage. 2016 has been an especially bad year for musician deaths, and this removal of George Michael on Christmas Day just seems like insult to injury. I was a fan both of his bubble-gum pop Wham! material and of his somewhat more thoughtful (usually) solo work. I’ll miss him.

Also, last week, as a result of a Twitter conversation that included Laurie Penny, Anne Theriault and me among others, I helped write a Dickens pastiche called “A Trump Christmas Carol” with Penny, Jo Walton and Roz Kaveney. I suspect you can tell by the title who is the subject and which Dickens tale we’re pastiching. Uncanny Magazine was kind enough to publish it, which marks my first appearance in the magazine. It was fun to write, and maybe a little cathartic.

Hope your Christmas was lovely, if you indeed celebrate Christmas. Mine was mostly about eating cookies and watching movies. A fine way to spend the day.

22 Comments on “George Michael + A Trump Christmas Carol”

  1. Lonesome Dove was on Starz yesterday and we watched that until the Ravens-Steelers game. Nice relaxing Christmas with the boyz home for the holiday!

  2. Yes, a particularly hard year for musician losses. :-(

    But aside from the new about George Michael, yesterday was a banner Christmas Day. High hilarity and a great time making a gift for the neighbor’s seven-year-old, our pen pal for the past few months. He’s just learning to write and spell so we’ve been getting “The Luke News” every few days from him. Every so often, I put together an edition of “News From Next Door” for him; yesterday’s edition was a particularly fun one.

    Nothing makes a holiday as wonderful as a little child’s delight. :-)

  3. I would say that 2016 is a wrap for me, basically one of the worst years of my life since 1994 when my mom died. So yeah, just closing this one out in my mind.

  4. This has been a rough year, not even celebrity- or politically-speaking, for almost everyone I know, including me. The one bright spot was my only child had her first baby three weeks ago. He is a precious little soul and gives me a ray of hope for the future. I spent Christmas cuddling him and saying thanks to the multiverse for such a great gift.

  5. Now everybody’s talking about this new decade
    Like you say the magic numbers
    Then just say goodbye to
    The stupid mistakes you made
    Oh my memory serves me far too well

  6. In point of fact, the ACA health insurance runs a minimum of $520/month in my area. This is slightly more than my rent, and more than half my income. I can’t remotely afford it. I am not eligible for subsidies because… get this! I don’t make enough money.

    Whatever The Donald does to Obamacare won’t hurt me in the slightest. It may have been sold to the public as making health care affordable. It does not do that at all.

  7. Zephvark, where did that come from? unless as a spoiler from the story.

    Speaking of the Christmas Carol sendup, I came across that as a link from BoingBoing, and snickered all through it. I have passed it along to several friends.

  8. In addition to George Michael yesterday dozens of members of the Alexandrov Choir died in an airplane crash near Sochi. About the best Soviet / Russian men’s choir there is. I hope this year goes away soon.

  9. My son’s comment when Carrie Fisher had her heart attack was “2016 reminding us it’s not over yet” – feeling the same way about George Michael.

    Yesterday was also Chanukah – wishing *חַג שָׂמֵחַ to all who were celebrating any holiday yesterday.

    * Hebrew for “Happy Holiday”, traditionally used for all holidays (not for political correctness)

  10. I told am sad at the loss of George Michael. I loved his songs from the 1980s as well. I miss the whole decade of the 1980s. They were real good years for me. I’m also sorry to hear about Carrie Fisher. One of my jobs during college was working at the local General Cinnema Corporation thearter when Star Wars first came out. What a time! We had lines around the building and the movie poster was stolen out of now showing display! Good times.
    I will not be reading the Trump piece. It’s time for all the Trump haters to suck it up and move on with their lives. They are looking pretty childish now. The Electoral College has voted and like it or not, Donald J. Trump is our next president .
    I’m tired of all these snowflakes having a temper tantrum.

  11. It feels more natural when people older than you die. I’m now seeing people younger than me go. But that doesn’t make me think, “Ha, beat that one!” It’s more like watching the shadows gathering in. My turn’s coming.

    Back in March, when most people didn’t think Trump would win, I posted a story set in the first year of his presidency. Whether it’s prescient or not, we’ll soon know.

  12. My theory for 2016 is the long-running series we’re living in is changing writers, and all the subtle, tricky characters the old writer created and enjoyed playing with are being written out by the new one, in favour of the types of characters and plot-lines they prefer. Unfortunately, the new writer appears to be fond of “rolling back the clock” and re-hashing old plot-lines to try and get them to come around right (or at least “right” by their opinion, if not ours).

  13. @zephvark: You can’t blame Obamacare if your Republican controlled state government chose not to expand Medicaid. If I read the Obamacare website correctly, if you make less than the minimum to qualify for Obamacare subsidies, and you live in a state with Medicaid expansion, you ought to be enrolling in Medicaid instead of Obamacare anyway. Or you could just be a troll. Whatever.

    @OMW504: Just out of curiosity, what was your opinion of Donald Trump and the other birthers, especially when they were still bringing it up in the middle of Obama’s second term? Talk about special snowflakes having temper tantrums… Sad to think that one of them will be our President in a month.

  14. George Michael’s music was part of the background of my late teen and college years, but the only song that really affected me was the first hit: Young Guns. To a teenager looking for meaning in just about anything, I saw it clearly as a gay love song: “Why are you getting married to that woman. You know you belong with me!” The last shot of the music video, with Andrew removing his tie as he left the disco with George, made it clear who the winner was.

    As for getting on with my life, Donald Trump will soon be my president. A person who works for me (and the other citizens of this country). As a figurehead, he represents my country to the world. He owes it to me to do as good a job as he can, and not to embarrass us. So far he’s doing a terrible job. If it were solely up to me I’d fire him right now. I get that he’s a rookie, and a total amateur at this, but the job is too important to give him much room for failure. He’s going to have to work very very hard to earn even my grudging respect. Frankly I don’t have much hope for him. I don’t think he belongs there. I will be among those calling him out for every mistake he makes. That will be a part of my life for as long as he is my president.

  15. @Bruce
    I never was a birther.
    I have always been opposed to Obamas policy not the man. I also did not need a safe place to go after my candidates lost in 2008 or 2012. I also did not hit the streets shouting Not My President. I faced the fact that my guy lost and went on with my life.
    I hope I do not get the loving maker of correction for this post.

  16. He had a sublime duet with Astrud Gilberto, a version of “Desafinado.” This introduced me to the Gilbertos; so I have that to thank Mr. Michael for as well. Plus he was one of the few voices that could possibly have done justice to Freddie Mercury memorials with Queen. Coincidentally, watched “Deadpool” last night and there he was again, Wham!

    Are he and Prince working up any new numbers tonight? That would be a celestial event.

  17. My point is that Donald Trump was a birther until well into his presidential run on 2016. If that’s not someone claiming Obama was not his President, I don’t know what is. He was not alone. Plenty of prominent Republicans, including Senators and Representatives were unwilling to discount the birther argument long after Obama produced a birth certificate. Having said that, I also think that the people protesting Trump’s victory, and saying “not my President” will soon be making the exact same vague arguments about Trump that my father-in-law used to claim that Obama is the worst President ever. I’m pretty sure any protests that after the inauguration will stop being nebulous “not my President” and start being pretty specific, though.

    2016 has really been a bad year to be an celebrity. Today it’s the wonderfully smart and witty Carrie Fisher. Sigh.

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