copyright © 2003 Todd Ristau

Floats like a butterfly, stings like a WMD

An Archie Levine Piece by Todd Wm. Ristau, inspired by an email from James Thorn

(News Theme Music and lights up on a man in a suit seated at a desk, music out. To be performed as an angry rant in the style of Lewis Black or Andy Rooney after being kept in a cage for a week fed only Mexican food and tequila.)


My name is Archie Levine, and THIS is what I think.

I've been watching the news. A lot. And I've been thinking about the new action figure they made of our Man in the White House, George W. Bush. You know what I'm talking about. I'm talking about that toy for our nation's young men with the President in a Top Gun flight suit just like the one he wore when he landed on the USS Abraham Lincoln to announce to the world that major fighting in the war on Iraq was over.

Did you know that not even General Dwight D. Eisenhower wore a military uniform while he was president of the United States? Think about that. The man who was Commander of the entire Allied Forces during WW2, the man who put his balls on the line and ordered the Normandy invasion knowing that there was a better than even chance it would fail--so good a chance it would fail, in fact, that before the D-day invasion he wrote a letter resigning and taking full responsibility for the invasion if it did fail--this giant among military men refused to wear a uniform in public office because the President of the United States is a civilian post.

George W, however, a man who joined the Air National Guard to avoid going to Viet Nam, went AWOL for over a year when he found out they were going to start mandatory drug testing of all Air Guard peronel...This guy puts on a uniform and pretends to land a fighter jet on an aircraft carrier...even wears a military jacket to a speech in Florida in spite of the 90 degree weather and all the real miliatary personel in short sleeve shirts...HE gets an action figure made of him. HE's a god damned yankee doodle dandy hero my 4 year old grandson is supposed to emulate by acting out with this toy even greater escapades than George W. Bush is willing to pretend in public on television.

Well, he isn't my hero. Not by a long shot.

I've decided I have a new hero: Saddam's cousin, Chemical Ali.

You know, “Floats like a butterfly, stings like a WMD?”

Now, before you "rush" (and I do mean as in Limbaugh) to judgment, think about it for just a minute.

This guy is incredible.

Just this week I saw on TV the news that we've captured him, and thought to myself, "Hell, isn't this the third or fourth time we've captured him?"

And then I thought, "Wait a minute. I thought we killed him. I thought we killed him a whole bunch of times."

Now, it seems to me, and maybe I'm wrong, that someone who has evidently escaped from our custody multiple times AND come back from the dead about three times more often than Jesus Christ must be a pretty special guy.

Unless....unless the news can't be trusted. But hey, aren't these reports coming from the Pentagon?

If you can't trust the government, then who the hell can you trust?

(pause) Of course I'm kidding.

Well, here is what I think.

The only thing I can think of...the only thing that makes more sense than them telling us that Chemical Ali combines the best elements of the Messiah and Harry Houdini.

I think that there is some kind of perverse drinking game being played in the press office at the Pentagon.

Here is how it goes: They are all sitting around tossing quarters into a shell casing full of beer, or they have to hold a helmet full of Jim Beam above the table until someone either misses the shell casing or spills some of the whiskey and if you do you lose. And losing means you have to announce that we've either killed or captured Chemical Ali. Again.

"Okay, dude, you let the boot drop below the table!!! You have to do the Ali, man!!!"

(pause) I'm starting a pool for the next time we either kill or capture him. Here's my dollar, and I'm picking the second week in November.

(lights out)


[Todd Ristau's website] [Archie Levine's website] [Ristau Entertainment Ltd.]

[Back to: Library] Home