Here's a tiny fantasy I had while Dave and Mrs. M.M.I.L. and I were sitting around talking about travel, and America-shame.
Dave and I are in Ireland, checking into a hotel. Something causes me to speak, exposing my American accent. The Irish hotel clerk asks me if I'm American, and I say coyly, "Maybe I am and maybe I'm not." When the clerk is puzzled and also intrigued, I elaborate, "If you're the kind of person who remembers that there are lots of Americans who didn't vote for Bush, if in your mind all Americans don't fall into a general wash of lardy foolishness, then maybe I am. But - did you watch Seinfeld? [He did.] You did? [Yes.] Remember Newman? Remember Jerry and Newman's relationship? If every time you see me you're going to be all 'Hello, NEWman' with me because I'm American, then maybe I'm not."*
The clerk loves my little speech. You can see a little dawn of relief from his anti-American feelings break over his face. And since Dave's been doing most of the talking, I'm granted a little of Dave's Australian cred. We are going to get on like gangbusters, this clerk and I.
There's nothing better and almost nothing I have more often than a little fantasy wherein someone who's got me all wrong starts getting me all right.
*It's not like I think this is a fabulous speech. Fantasies happen fast, and it was going to have to do. That's also what's great about fantasies. Sub-par shit can fly like an eagle in a speedy little fantasy. It's really more about the imagined reaction you're going to get.