By Tim Kelly
Wait… I might get through! Honey, can you believe it? I might actually get to talk with the President! I told you, after all the crap he’s taken about freezing out the Washington press corps, special prosecutors and all the rest that he’d have no real choice but to schedule a national telephone town hall and…
Yeah, I know you think he’s a complete dumbass, but c’mon, how often does anyone get to converse with POTUS regardless of…
Yes, I’ll hold for the President. Holy crap! No, I’m not putting it on speaker! What? No, I don’t want you to take any pictures. Well, OK, maybe a few. You’re right. The Republicans in the family won’t believe it and the Democrats will totally go bat crap…
Hello? Mr. Trump? Yes, and thank you too. Where? My wife and I live on Long Island’s North Fork. You know, you could say the atomic bomb was invented out here. Albert Einstein used to vacation in Cutchogue and sail on Peconic Bay. During one such trip he learned that the Nazis were working on a new weapon of mass destruction, which prompted him to write to Franklin Roosevelt…
What? No, Franklin Roosevelt didn’t play outside linebacker for the Green Bay Packers. During the Great Depression he came up with The New Deal, remember? No, it wasn’t a book. Um, yeah, I know you’re credited with writing “The Art of the Deal” but this was…
Sorry, of course I know time is money but … the point is that letter led to the “The Manhattan Project.” No, not condos, the first atomic… Well, no, I can’t think of anyone who could develop a Manhattan project better than you.
(Honey, will you please stop shouting “dumbass!” He can probably hear you! Yeah, I know that’s the point, but for cryin’ out loud it’s …)
What would I like to share? Well, to be quite honest, I don’t think you have a clue as to what you’ve gotten yourself into.
(Will you give me a break! I’m on the phone with the friggin president! I can’t hear myself think with you bellowing “of course he doesn’t have a clue!’ Can’t you go do laundry or something? Wait, I didn’t mean it like that. I’m only trying to … Nice, slam the door. Perfect.)
Uh, Mr. President? Do you have a Secretary of Matrimony? Cause at the moment…
No, sorry, it was just a joke. What I’m trying to say is you’re really not the most powerful man in the world. What? No, I’m not bucking for an IRS audit. I’m just saying the Russian leader, Mr.… OK, fine, I won’t say his name out loud. What? No, I haven’t been issues a subpoena. No, I’m not going to serve one on The White House either. Anyway, that, uh, guy doesn’t have to work with two Houses of Congress, the federal judiciary, not to mention the Constitution. He wants something done, it’s done, simple as that.
No, I don’t think that’s how it should be. That may work at Trump Inc., or whatever your company’s called. Just like Mr. Pu…, um HIM, in your business you just snap your fingers to work your will. But now you’re the CEO of U.S.A., Inc., a publicly held concern with a board of directors of over 325 million. And if you don’t cut it, they can fire your butt, um, I mean, vote you out in little over three and a half years.
And THEY’D get to say, “You’re fired!”
Toto, we’re not on 5th Ave. anymore!
Sorry, that was, you know, from the Wizard of Oz. No, I don’t know whether Oz had a Planning and Zoning Commission or a minimum wage. Maybe in Munchkinland! Get it? Uh, no, to the best of my knowledge Munchkinland was not along the Jersey shore.
You’re probably right. The Yellow Brick Road probably didn’t meet federal highway standards and wasn’t engineered to bear the weight of a construction crane.
Advice? Sure, stop filling your inner circle with dumbasses.
(Ah, you’re back, Honey. No, I didn’t just call the prez a dumbass. And what’s with the frown? Are you angry or something? Oh, that. The laundry thing. Look, that was just…)
Yes, Mr. President, “dumbasses.” And I appreciate that you appreciate my candor.
(What? No, I’m not a suck-up. Can we talk about this later? Waddaya mean later is too late? C’mon, it’s not like I…)
I’m sorry? Sure, ask away. No, I know you tweet to a fare-thee-well, but Twitter isn’t my thing. 140 characters? Why? Unless to say something like, “Honey, I didn’t mean it the way it came out.” Or, “Pumpkin, you work awfully hard, especially at home. How about we go out to a really nice restaurant tonight! And wow, do you look beautiful!”
(No, Sweetums It doesn’t take a full 140 characters for a guy to say, “Yes, Dear, I’m a total dumbass.”)
Uh, no, Mr. President. I didn’t call you a “total dumbass.” Must be a bad connection.
Oh, no, sir, thank YOU for taking the time to speak with me. Wait, my wife wants to add something – Uh, she says you and I have a lot in common. Yes, sir, she is quite a woman. You have no idea.
Tim Kelly is a former congressional press secretary and award-winning reporter, editor, columnist and photographer. He has lived on the North Fork for 30 years. For his mid-life crisis, he became a bagpiper.