At the end of the film “The Graduate,” when the protagonist has absconded away with the bride onto a bus (of all things), one of the last shots of the film is the look of stunned horror on their faces, after the levity and absurdity of the act has dissipated. Both realizing the gravity of what they have done.
After all the chest-thumping, parades, accolades and hootenany, I can see the president in the Oval office, alone, surrounded by all the pressures of the world and the great expectations of a nation and having that same expression.
And you may find yourself living in a shotgun shack
And you may find yourself in another part of the world
And you may find yourself behind the wheel of a large automobile
And you may find yourself in a beautiful house, with a beautiful wife
And you may ask yourself, ‘Well … how did I get here?’ (“Once In A Lifetime,” Talking Heads)
One can assuage themselves in the belief that they got there via hard work, tenacity, political acumen, shrewdness, a well-run campaign, novelty, brilliance and an “Up With People” vision that many wanted to co-sign on.
And being relatively young, gifted and black didn’t exactly hurt either.
But still, at some point it has to hit you, when you’re alone surrounded by the ghosts of president’s past, that you are now, officially, “The Man,” for better or worse. You are where you have always dreamed to be and now what?