Shadow Government

My neighbor Wally’s been acting very peculiar lately, speaking extemporaneously to himself while watering his lawn. It’s possible he has a high position in President Bush’s new shadow government, and is practicing for the role.You know, the shadow government. The secret government that’s to take over if the A-Rabs find a way to deliver one of their home-kit-built A-bombs in a suitcase to Washington.

If Washington is wiped out, people you’ve never heard of would take over as president, vice president, and so on down the line. Wally would make a lousy president, because he watches the Survivor TV show. He can’t be very intelligent.

I think these thoughts as I commute to work in my banged-up old car. My car won’t go as fast as everybody else’s on the road, so I’m in the slow lane doing 60 mph. I lift my sealed coffee mug my wife bought me for Christmas (she bought me this because the regular open mug I used to use always spilled coffee down my front), and take a sip.

“That’s good coffee,” I tell myself.

What a terrible thing it is to have to fight against Muslim nut-cases. I can’t respect them as an enemy because they wear turbans and they’re filthy. The Nazis, they were brutal too, but they wore clean, cool-looking uniforms (at least in the movies). They seemed intelligent. They invented the jet fighter and wore a monocle in one eye.

They were an enemy you could love to hate.

I take another sip of coffee. A punk in a BMW roars to within a few feet of my bumper, as though expecting me to careen over into the fast lane to get out of his way. I hit the brakes, slowing to 50 mph. The punk’s angry, I can tell.

These Muslim hillbillies we’re fighting, before they got hold of Russian assault rifles, and A-bomb cook books from the New York Library, would have been stealing sheep from each other on a sand dune somewhere in the Punjab. They’ve got to cause trouble because they’ve got nothing else to do. I mean, what are you going to do all day if you live in a country where there’s no Starbucks, polish your camel?

The punk riding on my bumper blows his top, swerves into the fast lane, passes me, and flips the bird.

“A little man with a big foot,” I call sarcastically. I have another sip. “That’s good coffee.”

I wonder if I’ve been picked for some spot in Bush’s shadow government and don’t know it, maybe secretary of the navy or something. No, I’ve never sailed a boat. Speaker of the house. That would be a better job.

A giant truck comes speeding up, pulling so close I can clearly read the word “Peterbuilt” on my rear windshield.

“That’s good coffee.”



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