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President Hands it to Marine One   Mar7 2004

Filed under Chicanery |

He loves a joke”, confides the First Lady –  “.. but one day it went horribly wrong!”

WASHINGTON – The sound is still reverberating through White House grounds, the Rose Garden, the West Wing, down Pennsylvania Avenue, the kitchen (definitely the kitchen) – and even, they think, in the car pool!

The memory of it still makes my eyes water”, confessed White House Florist, Fancy Clock. “Gollee, I haven’t heard such a noise since a student pilot removed his Cessna’s prop on a dumpster.”

Pastry Chef Rolling Messier was off duty leaving the White House kitchen when he heard it.

I thought, my God, no! I last saw the apprentice chef brandishing a new Next Day GourmetTM heavy-duty stainless steel spoon near the industrial-strength blender!!”

The ‘Incident’?

(Shortly. Patience please)

The President is well known for his boyish, Texan sense of humor.

He loves a good joke, preferably on staffers when they least expect it.

His favorite prank occurred to him after hearing the story of ejection seats in Irish helicopters, told by Marine One air crew during a breakdown in discipline, taste, and protocol.

Workin’ on this, Junio’ figgers, eff’n he wo’e an extenshun arm ayend a false hayend ayend stuck this hyar in th’ chopper’s roto’ wharl pretendin’ t’wave, he’d scare th’ bejeezus outta all ayend surndry.

It worked a treat, Goddammit! He scared ‘em crapless. Beyest of all were Secoority – th’ looks on them thar fayeces. Eff’n they wuz Japs they’d haf skewered ‘emselves on th’ spot – err, no offens t’th’ darg”.

(Anecdote kindly supplied by an old family friend)

So well did repeat performances condition all and sundry, in fact, that ..

Spot, Junio’s beloved pet spaniard, when he seez the fake arm he scurries fo’ a hidin’ place an’ howls an’ yowls. I tell ya, he knows th’ President is gonna hurt hisself agin!”

A HMX flight crew spent the best part of a day coaxing him (the distressed pooch, that is) out of Marine One’s tail section on one occasion. Some claim, perhaps unfairly, such incidents shortened Spot’s life.

And The ‘Incident’?? (You guessed it)

It’s a tall call, but nothing is beyond the reach of our President.

After a particularly bad meeting with French officials, it happened that Dubya didn’t have his fake arm with him. The First Lady usually carries it for him in a little bag they got on their European Vacation (inspired by one of their favorite movies by Chevy Chase)”.

Well, the First Lady was not on Marine One that fateful day, was she! And – YOU GUESSED IT.”

Still distressed by something a Frenchman said – in French he claimed, though it sounded like goddarn English to our (Texan) President – the moment he stepped from Marine One our still fuming Dubya, seeing Security looking anxiously at him from the White House lawn (funny, they always do that – look at him anxiously) reflexively (just to piss ‘em off this time, I think) stuck up his (real) arm – straight into the chopper’s rotor!” 

(kindly described by White House guest witness)

Twangy Whammy

Staffers said they never heard anything like it, and hope never to again.

Not the sound of soft, fleshy fingers and delicate, brittle, manicured nails meeting titanium-capped woven fiberglass traveling at 150 feet per second. No Sirree! That was just a brief, tiny squishy noise with attendant crackling from wildly distorted joints and bones.

The sound they never want to hear again, that made their eyes water, made the hair on the back of their necks stand up then run for cover, made a cold deathly breath of fear momentarily darken the Rose Garden leaving a trail of prematurely fallen petals, made the lights dim throughout the West Wing – an event not witnessed in its long, tarnished history (hence it was painted White) – was that of a Texan near-mortally wounded, a Texan in a fit of anti-French rage, a Texan remembering the Alamo, seeing it attacked by Moslems instead of Godless Catholic peons!

A Texan with a broken fingernail or two – and, this Sheep-Overboard reporter adds proudly, a Texan with a not unsheepish look about him.