Politicians Eat Public Relations Pie


Esmeralda hands Lena a menu and the menu’s lamination holds a shimmer from the fluorescent lights posted in parallel on the ceiling. A crackling of camera shutters detonates around their bodies as the hand-off becomes documented for the public. Lena pretends to read the menu. She guides her finger across the listed items as if she was blind and reading brail.
“You know I heard the peach pie is good here,” Lena comments.
“Oh, it’s wonderful,” Esmeralda replies.
“I’ll take a piece then.”
“Coming right up.” Esmeralda inflects a customer service pitch and smile and Lena does the same. She shuffles through the crowd of journalists and returns with a piece of pie.
“Looks delicious!” Lena says. She cuts off the pie’s peak and places it insider her mouth and chews with her whitened teeth. The cameras erupt like an applauding audience.

Later in the evening Lena sits in a limousine scrolling through pictures emailed to her taken at the diner.
“These came out nice,” she says, “I am glad we rehearsed it all morning.”

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