Going Over the Fiscal Cliff: Denim or Silk?

Diane Sawyer
Diane Sawyer (Photo credit: asterix611)

Since early November, when the media shifted focus from the presidential election to the next crisis, David’s favorite television show has been the evening news. To him, it’s comedy. Every time Diane Sawyer says “fiscal cliff,” he roars with laughter.

I haven’t laughed. The prospect of going over a cliff is scary. At first, the mere mention of John Boehner’s name gave me the fantods. But after being bombarded–fiscal cliff, fiscal cliff, fiscal cliff— over and over, on local news, network news, PBS News Hour, day after day for nearly two months, I became jaded. While David sat in the living room and guffawed, I muttered, Que sera, sera, and kept on chopping onions.

But two days ago, while rummaging through purpleborough’s blog, I stumbled upon this sentence: Nevertheless, I must decide what I am going to wear going over the fiscal cliff.

And I realized my error. The fiscal cliff isn’t something to dismiss with a chuckle. There’s a lot to be done before midnight. I haven’t decided what I’ll wear either.

At the top of the list is whether I can go with just the clothes on my back, or whether I’ll need a suitcase. What about toiletries? Cosmetics? I will take a lipstick–I always take a lipstick, because I think other people feel better when I wear it–but what about eye shadow? Will I be able to find my manicurist after we’ve gone over? Because he’s all booked up today.

I’ll have to take shampoo, conditioner, brush, dryer, curling iron. Millions of people will be going over that cliff. I’ll take several bars of deodorant soap. I hope everybody does.

Packing would be easier if I knew what’s at the bottom of the fiscal cliff. If a river’s down there, I would wear my bathing suit, but for anything else, denim is more serviceable. My jeans have gotten a little scruffy, so if there’s mud, they’ll do fine. It would be a shame for my good black slacks to get dirty. I want to wear them to dinner later with my with my new red cowl-necked sweater. I hope there’s mud. For that matter, I hope there’s dinner.

What will Diane Sawyer wear going over the fiscal cliff?

The probability of a hard landing means I’ll have to take the travel first-aid kit I picked up at Target last year. Gauze and antibacterial ointment can come in awfully handy. Plus mosquito repellent. Anti-itch cream. Aspirin, ibuprofen. Cough drops. A couple of Ace bandages for wrapping sprained ankles. Ichthyol for mesquite thorns. Moleskin for blisters (I assume we will not be met by a string of limos). Sunscreen, hat.

Books. I don’t go anywhere without books.

Laptop, notebook, pens, index cards. I assume there will be WiFi somewhere in the vicinity of the landing site. Mouse. Camera and USB cable. Flash drive. Printer and paper? I might be able to print at a library. Are there libraries over the fiscal cliff?

Cats. I can’t go without the cats. I won’t go without the cats. Neither will David. But he’ll have to deal with them. They’re so heavy that every time I pick up one of the carriers, I throw my back out.

Insurance cards, passport, driver’s license, birth certificate. Purpleborough thinks we won’t need any form of ID, but I’m going to take what I have. If we get down there and they change their minds, we’ll probably need ID to get back up.

It’s obvious I’m going at this haphazardly. There’s so much to do and so little time in which to do it. If you see anything I’ve missed, please leave a comment. If you’ll do the same thing for Purpleborough, I’m sure she’ll appreciate it.

I have to go now and do a load of laundry. I was going to make peanut butter sandwiches to carry along, but I’ve decided against it. The one thing I’m sure of is this: even at the bottom of the fiscal cliff, we’re bound to find a McDonald’s.

Before I go, let me be clear: I’m not complaining about going over the fiscal cliff–I want to do my part, just like everyone else–but if we go over and then they tell us to turn around and come back, I expect transportation to be provided. It doesn’t have to be fancy. Mules will do. I just don’t think I should have to scale the fiscal cliff under my own steam. There’s too much stuff to carry.

18 thoughts on “Going Over the Fiscal Cliff: Denim or Silk?

  1. This is hilarious! I left out so many essential things to carry, mainly ID because now I am sure that we will have to have some form of ID.

    However, I thought about all the illegals…are they going over the cliff with us and what to do we do about that.

    Please bring enough deodorant soap for me….my soap will not fit into my pocket since I have decided that jeans are the correct dress code.I have to take my cell phone. It has just about everything I think I will need.

    If your husband hears Dianne stating what she will wear, please let me know.


  2. I watch Rachel Maddow and Laurence O’Donnell on MSNBC. They call it a “fiscal speed bump” or “fiscal curb.” If it’s just a gradual incline, we can walk down it slowly and just as slowly walk back up. I better wear my New Balance walking shoes at any rate. If it’s just a gradual incline, I might have time to buy a little red wagon at Target or some toy store and put Maggie in it. I’ll want my purse. Do we need money, cash, credit cards? Will there be credit down the incline? Maybe I’ll put some canned goods on the wagon to use for bartering if necessary. What’s the weather like down there? Umbrellas, coats, socks, gloves, hats, sunglasses?


    1. Did it all work out for you? I had hoped to see you at the bottom, but the crowd was so big I just sat down on a rock and pulled out a book. And just as I predicted, we’re going to have to get back up under our own steam.


  3. Oh Kathy, you have made me laugh so hard! Since it will be, presumably, midnight when we go over, I think I’ll opt for my silk PJs that my daughter gave me. I always take my big suitcase, but maybe, in this case, I’ll try to cram everything into a carryon. I’m afraid of heights, so I hope I don’t pass out on the way down.


    1. Thank you for laughing! There’s nothing I like better than knowing something I’ve written has tickled a funny bone. Were you okay on the way down? No passing out? PJs warm enough?


  4. I, too, like Kaye George, am afraid of heights. I didn’t realize I’d actually have to go OVER anything. Now I’m very worried. I probably should pack generic anti-diarrheal–and a few hours before midnight, take Dramamine.


    1. I hope you withstood the fall without incident. I appreciate your reminding me about meds related to the GI tract–they’re important. If we have to do this again, I’m going to ask my doctor for an anti-nausea patch. And maybe blinders for acrophobia.

      Thanks for visiting and commenting. I hope your 2013 is happy.


  5. Maybe there’s a beach below the cliff (speed bump) next to an ocean. We could build a huge bonfire and have a wild, all night end-of-the-world beach party, everyone share their RX drugs, because who cares anymore, and leftover Christmas food and drink, dance around the fire until the dawn, then we’ll go all Lord of the Flies.


    1. I guess it was a fairly soft landing, and it’s cold enough to build a fire, and I have my prescription-strength itch cream I’ll be glad to share. But do we have to go Lord of the Flies? If we do, we’re going to be tired going back up the cliff.


  6. Very interesting details you have remarked, thanks for posting . “A big man is one who makes us feel bigger when we are with him.” by John C. Maxwell.


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