WASHINGTON—Rolling their eyes at their own foolishness and silently chastising themselves the second they realized their mistake, millions of absentminded Americans once again caught themselves turning to their leaders this week, sources confirmed Wednesday.
The embarrassed U.S. populace, who confided to reporters that for a moment there they had found themselves actively seeking meaningful action from their elected representatives on matters ranging from small local issues to major international catastrophes, admitted they couldn’t help but laugh at themselves following the mental blunder.
“The other day, I was reading about the humanitarian crisis of undocumented children crossing the border from Mexico, and without really even thinking about it, I started wondering what Obama or Congress might do to fix it,” said Ellen Cannon of Millersburg, OH, explaining that she actually spent a few seconds contemplating the ways in which the government could help before she realized what she was doing. “Suddenly it hit me that I was expecting a solution from the people charged with running our country. I snapped out of it pretty quickly, but boy, did I feel like a dope.”
“It’ll be a while before I stop kicking myself for that one,” she added.
Attributing the fleeting moment of faith in its leaders to a simple lapse of judgement, the nation sheepishly acknowledged the awkward slip had caused it to briefly seek reassurance from public officials on issues including the sluggish economy, overcrowded public schools, gun show loopholes, Social Security, campaign finance reform, impurities in municipal tap water, both national and household debt, and the Kyoto Accords.
Several million Americans reportedly experienced a mixture of both surprise and exasperation with themselves after momentarily looking for answers from individuals vested with authority at the federal, state, or local level, saying they must have “completely spaced” when they tried to take solace in a leader’s words or presumed an elected official might have the ability and willingness to effect change of some kind.
Sources indicated that in nearly all cases, members of the populace were left wondering what else they might be capable of accidentally expecting from people in positions of power.
“I almost couldn’t believe it when I realized I’d been counting on the city council to take responsibility for the dangerous intersection near my home that desperately needs a traffic light,” said Peter Layne of Mendota, CA, who confessed it wasn’t the first time he had caught himself hoping for decisive action from those who, in accordance with the social contract governing democratic societies, have been elected to represent the general will of the people. “I don’t know what I was thinking—and this is the second time it’s happened this week! You’d think I’d know better by now. As irritated as I am with myself, I’m just thankful no one else witnessed my boneheaded slip-up.”
“I’m only human, and I guess mistakes happen,” he continued. “But I’d be lying if I said my face wasn’t red.”
At press time, sources confirmed the nation was still shaking its head in disbelief.