This is a Dark and Stormy Mess

This is a Dark and Stormy Mess

Let me start by saying that I don’t care a whit if the current president had sex with a porn star. They’re both adults and if Melania has a problem with her husband’s fidelity, she can deal with it. I’m much more concerned with the women he forcibly groped and kissed, and with the teenage girls he walked in on while they were changing for their beauty pageant appearance. I’m much more concerned about his blatant racism. Frankly, I’m more concerned about his Twitter feed.

An adult porn star hooking up with a C-list reality star? Meh.

Stormy Daniels. Maybe she can play Ivanka in the TV movie?

Nonetheless, the president reportedly paid Stormy Daniels $130,000 to keep her mouth shut about the affair. Really? $130,00? That’s peanuts. Ms. Daniels, you should have held out for more. I don’t know what a porn star makes, but $130,000 seems a paltry amount to buy your silence. Don’t sell yourself short.

Ms. Daniels could learn a few things about the art of negotiation from mainstream actresses. Ellen Pompeo, star of Grey’s Anatomy, reportedly fought hard for fair pay on the hit show where she is the program’s title character and, arguably, the least disposable. (Full disclosure: I have never seen an episode of Grey’s Anatomy, so don’t slap me down if I get some of this wrong.) She didn’t get what she asked for right away, but she is now the highest paid woman starring in a television drama. If Ms. Pompeo can stand her ground and ask for what she is worth, surely Ms. Daniels could have held out for more than a middling executive’s salary.

On the other hand, I suppose you get what you pay for. The story is out now. That it didn’t come out two years ago is ridiculous. Daniels told the entire story on the record to more than one reporter and there was nothing preventing the reporters from running with it. Imagine if Hillary Clinton had an affair with a porn star? Do you think any amount of hush money would have kept that quiet?

As the story unfolds, we get ever more lurid details. Ms. Daniels likes to swap gossip with her friends, apparently, and she leaves no detail unexamined. There are a number of things I’d rather not think about, but one detail is particularly disturbing. Daniels says the self-professed genius told her she reminded him of his daughter. Yuck. First, let’s not forget that the president has two daughters, though he seems to forget about his younger daughter all the time. Poor Tiffany! Except, in this case, not so much. Who on earth would want her father to compare her to a porn star he is trying to seduce? Double yuck. And what do you imagine Ivanka thinks about this? Is she horrified? Is she flattered? Apparently he made the compliment while telling Daniels he thought she was “smart.” So now we know that the president thinks his daughter is every bit as smart as a porn star. He’s probably right about that.

The whole story is ridiculous and pathetic and I predict it will be a blip in a presidency filled with scandal. I’ve already heard too much. If there are any other porn stars out there with $130,000 in their bank accounts courtesy of the Caligula administration, keep it to yourself. I don’t need to know any more than I already do. I’m off to take a shower.

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Tiffany Quay Tyson

THE PAST IS NEVER, a southern gothic novel steeped in local lore, is available now. The Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance deemed it an Okra Pick. Tyson's debut novel THREE RIVERS was a finalist for both the Colorado Book Award for Literary Fiction and the Mississippi Institute of Arts and Letters Award for Fiction. She was born and raised in Jackson, Mississippi and now lives, writes, and teaches in Denver, Colorado.
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