00:56 - Source: HLN
Trump touches orb, becomes a meme

Editor’s Note: David Wheeler is a freelance writer, a journalism professor at the University of Tampa and the editor of the online magazine AliveTampaBay.com. Follow him on Twitter: @David_R_Wheeler. The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author.

Story highlights

David Wheeler: People freaked out about picture of Trump in Saudi Arabia with hands on glowing orb. I'm not freaked. The glowing orb is a friend of mine

He says he met the orb at Burning Man and it told him three predictions about the orange being who would one day touch the orb

CNN  — 

Everyone’s freaking out about Donald Trump’s involvement with the glowing orb, on which he placed his hands during his visit to Saudi Arabia Sunday – along with Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud,and Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi – to officially open, we’re told, the Global Center for Combating Extremist Ideology.

But I’m here to put everything into context. I know the glowing orb. The glowing orb is a friend of mine. The orb – whose name is Orville, by the way – appeared to me in a beautiful hallucination at Burning Man back in ’95. We’ve been in touch ever since – sometimes in dreams, sometimes over email. It turns out that, as long as we all behave according to Orville’s strict instructions, and follow his orders blindly and unquestioningly, we’ll be fine.

David R. Wheeler

You might be interested in three predictions Orville made that have already come true.

Prediction No. 1:

America will empower an orange being in November of 2016.

“Ha,” I scoffed when the orb told me this in the Nevada desert on the first night of Burning Man in 1995 (back when Burning Man was still cool). “We would never do that, Orville.” But, sure enough, America put a tangerine-tinted man in the Oval Office, despite his description of Mexican immigrants as criminals and “rapists.” And despite his boasts of groping women without their permission. And despite his hints that Second-Amendment-loving gun owners could “do something” if his opponent were elected.

You guys, Orville was right.

Prediction No. 2:

The orange being will put three fingers in the Pacific Ocean in May of 2017.

This prediction came to me via my Outlook email inbox during his inauguration. It had been three or four years since I’d heard from Orville – he sent me some photos of his backpacking excursion through Europe – and I was glad to hear from my old friend.

Initially, of course, I thought Orville was talking about the literal ocean, and I expected a photo op sometime this month, perhaps involving Trump shaking hands with blue-collar workers at the Port of Los Angeles. But then, bam, there was Orville, all over TV and the Internet. And guys, did you see where Trump’s fingers were? IN THE PACIFIC OCEAN section of Orville’s surface.

I emailed Orville the now-famous image, complimented his photogenic appearance, and asked if this was his prediction coming true.

He wrote back, “Yes, and don’t fall for the storyline that the Saudis were trying to kiss up to him by shrinking the Earth just to make his hands look bigger.”

“Orville,” I said, “Two of your predictions have come true. Is there a third?

“Yes,” he wrote back. “Can we switch to Facebook direct messaging?”

“Sure,” I wrote back.

Then, in a Facebook direct message, Orville gave me the third prediction.

Prediction No. 3:

Those who disobey Orville the Orb will be destroyed.

“Wait, this doesn’t sound like you,” I typed back. “You’re usually so fun-loving and easy-going. You’re not the type to threaten people.”

“Well, I appreciate you saying that,” he wrote. “But it’s time to take extreme measures. After watching a lot of Fox News, I’ve decided that the best way forward is to promote chaos, drive wedges between people, and thereby empower the orange being. As you can see, the orange being has pledged allegiance to me.”

“Orville,” I wrote back, “that’s ridiculous. You, the orb, are supposed to be against extremism. That’s what the whole Riyadh photo op was about.”

“Silence, mortal,” he wrote back, using a tone I’d never heard from him before. “I’m becoming impatient with the gridlock in Washington. Therefore, I believe we should undermine faith in our institutions, such as a free press and an independent judiciary, and let the orange being reign. This is my declaration.”

“What happens if we refuse?” I asked timidly.

“You don’t want to find out, buddy boy.”

Then he used an obscene emoji.

But guys, I think everything is fine. Really. Like I said, I’ve known Orville for years. Plus, maybe he was just joking. That Orville can be a real kidder sometimes.