Patrick Grieve
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Mary Barra Attending Trump Inauguration as Spectator in Our Universe, as Vice President in Parallel One

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Mary Barra at the GM 24th Annual Supplier of the Year Awards

Are you guys familiar with the multiverse?

Neither am I, but I think I get the broad strokes of it, which are that there is an infinite number of universes contained within a hypothetical set of possible universes. Many of these “parallel” or “alternative” universes are very similar to our own, but with minor changes.

So, for example, there are many, many universes in which Hillary Clinton is all set to be sworn in as president on Friday. There’s the universe where America abolished the electoral college after the 2000 election controversy, there’s the universe where James Comey was never born, there’s the universe where Vladimir Putin isn’t a turd—all universes in which, due to seemingly small changes, the results of an entire election are reversed and Hillary Clinton becomes the 45th president of the United States.

Similarly, there are multiple universes in which Clinton is president, but her vice president is someone other than Tim Kaine. As was revealed in one of the WikiLeaks dumps, Clinton considered many veep candidates before picking Kaine, one of whom was General Motors CEO Mary Barra.

So there is definitely a universe in which this Friday, Hillary Clinton and Mary Barra are sworn in as president and vice president, while Donald Trump stays home and bitterly tweets about how neither woman “is a 10. Sad!”

However, we live in a much weirder and darker universe, in which a reality television star is becoming the leader of the free world on Friday, and Clinton and Barra will just be there to watch.

According to The Detroit News, GM confirmed today that Barra will be attending the inauguration, but that the company declined to provide specifics or say if she was invited by Trump.

Barra belongs to a panel of business leaders (which also includes Elon Musk and Uber CEO Travis Kalanick) that was created by Trump to advise him on issues of economics and job growth. (Even though, in the alternate universe in which Clinton chose Barra as her VP, Trump would have surely tweeted out about how “Lightweight Barra will bankrupt America the same way that she bankrupted failing General Motors.”)

So now Clinton and Barra will both be at the inauguration, but as spectators rather than participants. And, like me, they’ll probably be watching the whole thing and wondering how the hell they can get out of this universe.

  • Patrick GrieveEditor

    Patrick Grieve was born in Southwestern Ohio and has lived there all of his life, with the exception of a few years spent getting a Creative Writing degree in Southeastern Ohio. He loves to take road trips, sometimes to places as distant as Northeastern or even Northwestern Ohio. Patrick also enjoys old movies, shopping at thrift stores, going to ballgames, writing about those things, and watching Law & Order reruns. He just watches the original series, though, none of the spin-offs. And also only the ones they made before Jerry Orbach died. Season five was really the peak, in his opinion. See more articles by Patrick.