In Augur al Don

After a surprisingly solemn & uneventful recitation of his oath of office, the freshly minted president took the few short steps down-dais toward the gathered guests, but rather than assume the normal position for the inaugural address, he edged farther forward and stood to the left of the lectern staring straight ahead, his line of sight leveled just above the heads of the seated onlookers. Then, as if he’d forgotten, he reached over to his right and wheeled a small cart from behind the podium.


On the cart sat an old machine, about hip high. The president gingerly positioned some sort of current-collection lever onto a horizontally spinning wheel atop the device and, as the machine began to emit music, circulating the iconic tune, Proclamation from The Triumphant Savior of the Order of Animated Rodentia, he resumed his former posture, hands to his sides.

Hover over- or click the image to see what happened next!

Der Kaufmann von New York – 2016

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In the original conception of the above scenario, my friend Uwe imagined that the Don would peel off his mask revealing his true identity, proving once and for all that Andy Kaufman was indeed alive and had hoaxed us as he’d never hoaxed before.

Inclined to think that one mask is never enough, my embellishment entails a removal of masks in succession: respectively, Kaufman reveals he’s Ronald Reagan, Reagan reveals he’s Richard Nixon, and Tricky pulls off his Nixon mask to unveil the actual victor of the contest, garnerer of 269 electoral votes, who managed to get picked by the House of Representatives with the narrowest margin allowable, a vote that had not taken place since John Quincy Adams forged ahead of Andrew Jackson in the still adolescent nineteenth century.

The new president, who’d lobbied the House to snatch the requisite twenty-six state delegations, turned out NOT to be the author of Art of the Deal, but none other than his opponent in the Electoral Math Contest of Two-Thousand and Sixteen, Hillary Rodham (from circa 1975, if you can imagine such a thing).

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