It’s an open secret that I dream of retiring from my investigations business and moving to Vermont. I’ve got it all worked out. My study will look out on a beautiful mountain. I’ll keep an annual pass to Jay Peak. I’ll raise a dairy cow—nothing too big, just a Miniature Jersey—who I’ll name Maud.
Also, one of the four main characters from Freedom City is a supplanted Vermonter who was a tad sheltered growing up and who is now trying to reconcile the relative sanity of her home state with the rest of America. This passage explains it best:
Mentally, she had come to terms with her self-destructiveness and had begun to understand its origins. Reared in Vermont’s pristine, blue bubble, she understood the world as governed by reasonable and fundamentally good people, despite ideological differences. When she had witnessed evidence of America’s fundamental rottenness and stupidity on TV (case in point: Duck Dynasty), she assumed, like many Americans, that it was solely for entertainment purposes. Such idiocy must be a Hollywood fantasy, intended solely to induce laughter and ridicule. Such vapidity must be satire, created to help “real Americans” appreciate the values that actually matter: compassion, empathy, and love.
Her cousin’s malevolent smile put a crack in her simulacrum: some Americans, even ones who had theretofore been dear to her, were in fact rotten. But the twelve-year-old Clare had glossed over this lesson and stitched her bubble back together with counseling and Band-Aids. Through high school, college, and law school she met plenty of people who did bad things, but never did she write them off as “bad people”; they were merely people whose situations caused them to make bad choices. Then, nearly a third of the population voted for Donald J. Trump—a demonstrable crook, racist, sociopath—and it was no longer possible for her to ignore the world’s evil. Her worldview imploded under the crushing force of America’s profound sickness.
So, given my long-distance love affair with the Green Mountain State, it’s fitting that a Vermont company, Zero Gravity Brewery, has generously offered up some of their delicious beer in support of my Brooklyn launch. Come to Little King at 6 p.m. this Saturday, February 10th and get a $5 can, which you can enjoy during the reading.
Supplies are limited though, so arrive early! See you there!