Introducing the New, Unbeatable Presidential Cognition Test

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Photo credit: BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI - Getty Images
Photo credit: BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI - Getty Images

From ELLE

Photo credit: .
Photo credit: .

I just flew in from taking a cognition test and boy are my arms tired. Surprise, that was Cognition Test Question One. Condragulations; you passed. Stay vigilant!

You may be asking yourself, "Where was the question? And what was I supposed to answer?" That's the key to my new, completely impossible, 100 percent guaranteed Presidential Cognition Test. Like a Jeopardy! game, the questions are answers and the answers are in your mind. Why have I created this test? The answer is simple: money. And in addition to money: patriotism. And by patriotism, I mean, tax breaks and no-bid contracts. I love this country and I love this country's cognitive ability and it is my honor and my duty to deliver this improved test that is literally unbeatable. No one can pass it and that means no one can be president and then we will finally know peace.

Once again, Trump is trying to animate the zombified corpse of his presidency by stirring up non-troversy, this time by bragging about the results of his cognition test. Trump claims the test was very hard and insinuated in one of two interviews on Fox News where it came up that Joe Biden wouldn't do so well on the test, which is a pass/fail determinant of cognitive ability and not, say, an Olympic gymnastics floor routine.

Future historians will find it fascinating that Trump bragged about passing this diagnostic test while actively failing every other test of his presidency. The presidency test, by the way, is all yes/no questions like "Should hundreds of thousands of people die?" and "Secret police kidnappings???" and "What if we tear-gassed moms?" Very tricky. Also, it should go without saying (and yet apparently it needs to be said) that people experiencing cognitive decline shouldn't be targets of derision, and the idea of the President of the United States not experiencing cognitive decline shouldn't be remarkable. And yet both of these things keep coming up and it's because, scientists say, we are in hell. When Dante wrote his Divine Comedy, he foolishly did not include a level comprised solely of older white men sniping at each other about their brains. A missed opportunity. I can't confirm, but I do believe that we must have brought this terrible reality on ourselves by making box office hits out of Grumpy Old Men and its sequel Grumpier Old Men. On behalf of me and my long-dormant Blockbuster membership, I apologize.

Does anybody who is not an actual doctor need to be talking about cognition tests? In this climate? Inside this glass house? I know I certainly don't. I haven't left my home in four months yet I lose my keys every day. But since we're on the subject, I figured what this conversation was missing was my completely amateur opinions. The first step was to take Trump's notorious cognitive test myself. I walked into the testing center Cognition 'R Us and presented my nose to be swabbed. I was shocked to find that a cognition test is not done by sticking a Q-tip into my brain through my nasal cavity. This is an outrage; don't these doctors know where the brain is?

Anyway, I walked into the testing waiting room and found that it was full of people waiting to have their cogs nitioned. I presented myself to the head doctor, the ghost of Bruce Willis from The Sixth Sense. "Who's up first?" I asked Dr. Ghost Bruce Willis. The doctor responded, "Yes." I replied, "What?" The doctor shook his head, "No, what is second. Who is first. You're third."

That was Cognition Test Question number two! Surprise! Unfortunately you did not get that question right. I will explain it for future reference. In that scenario, "Who" was the name of the first patient. Yes, that's right, the World Health Organization is taking a cognition test. And the name of the second patient was Gertrude J. What of the Hyannis Port Whats.

Moving on! One of the points Trump keeps returning to regarding his test was that he was asked to remember and repeat a list of five words: "person, woman, man, camera, TV." It's possible that these weren't the actual words he was asked to remember but I've committed them to memory just in case. You can never be too careful! Here's a handy trick: use a nemonic device. For instance, I like to hold the words in my brain case by paraphrasing Julia Roberts in Notting Hill: I'm just a person, woman, man standing in front of a camera, TV, asking it to love me. See how easy that was? You're already cognitting better!

Pop quiz time! Here's question four! Please remember these words: "cardigan. mirrorball. seven. august. betty. peace. hoax." Unlike the president's list of words, which were random and fairly meaningless, these are the most important words in our national lexicon. Yes, you guessed it, they are part of the track list from Taylor Swift's surprise album, folklore. In a brilliant bit of corporate synergy, this cognition test is also part of the promotional album rollout and is sponsored by Target!

(This is a joke; there is no promotional partnership; please don't sue me; stream folklore at midnight!)

Trump has also remarked that the last five questions on his cognition test were very hard. Due to budget cuts, I have reduced the number of Very Hard Final Questions on my test to one. Are you ready? It is a doozy. Spoiler alert: you will not get it right on the first try. But we must still persist. Take it again, if you must! Higher a shady celebrity offspring SAT prep company to take the test for you. Phone a friend. Here it is. Cognition Test Question Number five (Very Hard): What is going on and how do we make it stop? Take all the time you need.

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