Saturday, August 07, 2004

A Drive With George Bush




BUSH: "Am I talking to the author of 'Why I like George Bush'?"
SDAI-Tech1: "Umm...Who is speaking please?"

BUSH: "This is George W. Bush. I wanted to call to express my gratitude and invite you to my ranch at Crawford for a visit."
SDAI-Tech1: "You certainly sound like the President, but so does the guy on the Jib Jab video. This could be an elaborate ruse..you wouldn't happen to have some proof, would you?"

BUSH: "How about I send Marine One to pick you up? Would that be enough proof for you?"
SDAI-Tech1: "That'll do. Where and when?"

BUSH: "About three hours. How big's your lawn? Readin' your piece I'd guess you live in the great big outdoors."
SDAI-Tech1: "You'd be right. Course out here it's a rock garden - not a lawn."

BUSH: "Settled then. Your rock garden in three hours."
SDAI-Tech1: "You need the address?"

BUSH: "Nope. Your address was picked up ten seconds after you picked up the phone."
SDAI-Tech1: "Okay then...Mr. President...Thanks. I look forward to meeting you."

I hang up the phone. I start freaking out a bit. Really the President? Maybe. Maybe a wacked out John Kerry supporter high on something? Quite possibly. Better be prepared for both possibilities I think to myself. Time for a quick shower and some "formal" casual wear and make sure my doors are bolted and take five minutes to reprogram the security system so that its default mode is an immediate call to the police. I get on the horn with a few of my neighbors to give them the heads up - that's the way we do things out here. They tell me they'll keep an eye out for suspicious folks. I relax. It's probably just a prank.

Three hours later I hear helicopter blades. "My God...it's true." emerges from my lips and I try to think of the things I want to ask him. My mind goes blank I can't think of anything. The blade noise increases and I watch the dust kick up and obscure my vision outside of the pool, cement and acre of rocks that make up my back yard. When it settles down I see two men emerge from Marine One. One man's a marine and the other looks like a secret service man -- judging by the glasses he wore.

I unlock the back patio gates, grab my own white Resistol cowboy hat and walk out past the now dusty pool to the open rocks where sits this finely polished green helicopter.

SECRET AGENT: "You S-D-A-I...Tech..1?"
SDAI-Tech1: "That's me."

SECRET AGENT: "That's one hell of a handle. I'm here to take you to meet the President at his ranch in Crawford. I was told you'd be expecting me."
SDAI-Tech1: "Yes, I was. Well, actually I expected a prank.

SECRET AGENT: "No Prank. No joke. This is the real McCoy."
SDAI-Tech1: "So I see."

I climb in the big helicopter up three white steps and inside. The marine pulls up the steps and I am guided to my seat by the agent. Light blue folding curtains are drawn up by the window and In a moment I see my home in an entirely new perspective, from the air. The agent doesn't talk, but looks out his window in the seat behind mine. I'm left with my thoughts.



Bush has a nice green lawn I think. Must be hard to maintain in the heat, I think to myself. I chastise myself for thinking about such mundane things. "Think policy" I tell myself, "think Condoleezza doctrine." I emerge from the Marine One and I spot Bush immediately in a white shirt and he's wearing a white hat too. Could be a Stetson...I'm not rightly sure. An aura surrounds him even from a distance and one can tell that he is the President, even when he's dressed in jeans and a T-shirt.

BUSH: "Welcome to Crawford. Welcome to the Texas White House."
SDAI-Tech1: "Pleased to be here Mr. President. Very pleased."

BUSH: "I reckon you're wondering why I brought you out here. Actually, I know you've just been on a ride, but I thought we might go for a drive?"
SDAI-Tech1: "A drive? Ok. Where we going to go?

BUSH: "You'll see."

I look around and a fleet of SUVs, a couple Cadillacs and a white truck are parked about 100 yards away.

BUSH: "We'll take my truck. It's low profile."

He hops in and motions me to enter. I don't see any Secret Service around and wonder if they let him go driving by himself.

SDAI-Tech1: "Sure. Aren't the secret service going to come with us?"

BUSH: "I imagine they'll sneak out and follow us but they'll keep at a discreet distance. I trust you."
SDAI-Tech1: "Thanks for the vote of confidence."



Bush gets a twinkle in his eye. I can see he is enjoying this. His demeanor puts one at ease. He's President, but he's also normal folk. The good sort that you can start conversin' with easily.

BUSH: "Let's drive!"

We kick up some dirt from the unpaved path and Bush knows how to handle his truck. In a minute we are leaving the ranch gates and are heading towards the main road.

BUSH: "Ok it's time for me to come clean. I really liked your article. Cheney liked the one about him as well and Condi! Condi is still blushing from your flattering comments. She comes up to me now in the Oval Office and says, 'Mr President are you ready to hear more about the Condoleezza Doctrine?' She breaks into a laugh and blushes like a schoolgirl."

I listen and can't help but smile. The thought that Condi teases the President with my comments would never have occurred to me. It's nice to hear though...I like it.

BUSH: We were wondering if you'd like a job with our campaign. Nothing fancy, just writing things honestly -- the way you see them with the western point of view. You interested?"

SDAI-Tech1: "You bet. You just want me to write them on my blog? It's not exactly the NY Times you know."
BUSH: "Yes. You should be glad it's not. If it were I don't think you'd be sitting here with me in my truck."

Bush laughs. It's an infectious laugh, the type that even when you don't initially want to laugh, one can't help oneself. Soon I'm laughing too. A bystander on the sidewalk in Crawford sees two guys in white cowboy hats their heads bobbing up and down - laughing at the expense of the NY Times. For some reason I expect the folks in Crawford are used to seeing Bush in his truck laughing, among other things - since he keeps right on walking without a second glance.

BUSH: "And we want to compensate you for your writings. How does twenty million dollars sound?"
SDAI-Tech1: "Twenty million? You're joking."

BUSH: "No. I'm not joking. You haven't figured it out yet have you?

Suddenly Condoleezza sits up in the back cab seat of the truck. I'm startled.

SDAI-Tech1: "What...were you hiding back there all the time?"

CONDI: "No...No...you just don't get it do you?"

SDAI-Tech1: "Get what? What Don't I get!"

CONDI & BUSH: "You're not really here. We're not really here. You're having a DREAM!"

I wake up in my bed. I look at the clock 2:30 am. "No more late night snacking for me" I tell myself. I go back to bed. I wake up the next day refreshed. I go out and fetch my mail from the box.

I would've forgotten the dream entirely if not for the envelope I hold in my hands ...an envelope with a check inside. A handsome sum is on the check. So just to be on the safe side, I figure I better keep bloggin' with a western point of view.

Y'all keep readin' ya hear?

;-)

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