I don’t follow the news much (it’s all pretty bad). But once in awhile, I catch sight of a story – or an image – that captures my curiosity… as this one did the other day.
During President Trump’s meeting with dozens of leaders of historically black universities on Monday, Kellyanne Conway, the White House counselor, made herself at home in the Oval Office. She hopped onto a couch, sat back on her heels and tapped on her phone.
Oh la la. Tsk tsk. Cringe.
Some reporters called the faux pas an outrage and a sign of disrespect, while others thought it an incident blown out of proportion. Some even called her out for “standing” on the furniture. (How exactly does this constitute standing?)
As for myself: I never thought the day would come when I’d have something in common with ANYONE in Trump’s administration. But that day has come. And despite Kellyanne Conway’s gaffe, I get it. Heck ya, I do. Ask anyone who’s seen me doing the exact same thing. From Bali to Bangkok, from Helsinki to Hampstead.
Conway mimics the same “impromptu” sitting thing as I’ve been doing for years. Except that her reasons (if she has any) are different than mine (sitting impairment).
Which makes me wonder: Is Oval Office etiquette and protocol a matter of choice? What’s she going to do when the Queen comes calling? Cozy up next to Liz and take a welfie?
So I get this: Sitting casually on a couch means flouting protocol if you do it in the White House – rather than on a cushioned daybed or lounge chair in a restaurant in Ubud. It means getting a little too unthinkingly casual in your new comfort zone, turning into a disgrace to the office of the POTUS. (Surely not the first time, nor to be the last).
But it’s elementary, my dear. You’ve got to don those heels in the morning and keep ’em on all day. Even when you set your butt to the bench. And most especially when that bench happens to be parked in the Oval Office.
I, on the other hand, have the (pain and not-to-be-envied) luxury of kneeling, crouching, squatting and reclining on daybeds and divans wherever I go.
Which is why I don’t envy Conway her day job.