Apr 24, 2013

Freedom Fries --- Chapter 3: "I said Hu" (Part II)

Previously, Pamela Nachtrieb Timbers, the voluminous Dean of Berkeley Law School, had been asked by President Obama to swing by for an interview --- a position at the Supreme Court is vacant --- but Pamela, regretfully, had to tell Obama about a skeleton in her closet. She is now explaining to Georg Lukacs, the charismatic hedge-fund titan (who happens to be an old friend of hers) why. Various secret services are listening in of course, anything Lukacs does is of interest, and even more so when it involves a potential future member of the Supreme Court.


“You really want to be a Supreme Court judge?” Lukacs continues on the tiny screen of the Park Avenue spies. All hot dogs have been finished by now, and Smith is twice as happy as his partners.
-“What’s left in store for a wise, hence middle-aged, woman? Plus, it would get me away from Berkeley.”
-“What’s wrong with Berkeley?”
“The sun always shines, and this Yoo always smiles, you know, John Yoo.”
-“Sure, torture memos.”
-“He’s back, you know.”

“Did you talk to Obama about Yoo?” he asks.
-“He couldn’t care less. He cares about the torture thing only because it could mess up his agenda.”
-“To the extend he has one.”
-“To the extend he has one.” Funny, Pamela thinks, we always agree on politics.
-“Did you mention him at all?”
-“Only between the lines.”
- “And?”
-“He answered only between the lines.”
-“Well, you’ll have to return to your Yoo now, and teach him torture manners.”
-“Very funny.”
-“You need my help?”
-“How?”
-“I could help, you know.”
-“You know, Yoo got pranked, sort of. It wasn’t on the news? Well, he’s go pranked. Somebody got into his class, with the Abu Ghraib outfit. It’s on the internet, YouTube.”

Jim, the driver, is back in his seat when a NYPD officer knocks at the side window of his van. Jim lowers the window, and the cop lowers his pointed cap into Jim’s cabin. “You are mis-parked, to put it mildly,” the cop says. Jim points to a sticker on the dashboard with a large picture of Hizzoner Michael Bloomberg, surrounded by a sizable posse of doting women, a large signature of Bloomberg, and the message ‘EXEMPTION, HOW CAN I HELP YOU?’ The officer squints, shakes his head, and is about to say something, when the Tea Room conversation audibly resumes inside the van.



-“You’ve been in on this prank,” the male voice squeaks.
—“Not officially, no,” the female voice squeaks back.
-“You want to get rid of him?”
-“I could give you the spiel of the esteemed jurist that I can impersonate intermittently. Yoo came to me and complained. You will remember, I am the dean. I said to him…”
-“…please…”
-“I said to him: My sense is that the vast majority of legal academics…”
-“Perhaps we could prank him some more.”
-“it would be expensive,” the female voice replies.
-“What did Attenborough say in Jurassic Park? No expenses spared,” the male voice answers.

The cop is overdoing it with his cap leaning deeper and deeper into his cabin, so Jim decides to push the window button. “You shouldn’t park here,” the officer reacts, withdrawing his cap and raising his voice in tandem with the window, “your exemption provides legal, but no physical protection.” Well put, Jim thinks. The window shuts and the cop retreats.

***

A Hummer H2 stretched New York limousine weighs roughly fourteen thousand pounds. “If you think big,” the sales nymph at Mega Coachbuilders had informed Wesley, “think bigger.” So he signed on. He was the last person in America to buy a stretched Hummer, and he’d be the last person to chauffeur one, since Hummers are out. Lots of gigs fell through when customers learned that the extra headroom and legroom, the luxury leather seating, the multiple large LCD screens and the awesome lighting — not to mention the mood-lit bar in the VIP area — would be housed by a discontinued Hummer from Government Motors, instead of, yes, what? A Toyota Prius?

This customer didn’t care about the Hummer part, but he has been very particular about Wesley arriving early, so he, the customer, would not suffer aerophobia, or whatever it was called, the fear of missing your own private plane. But when Wesley arrived too early at the Pierre, the bell captain had told him that the customer was delayed by thirty minutes and he’d be in the way with his overstretched truck and should make a lap around Central Park to kill time. So he chauffeurs his Hummer around the park and listens to the police scanner that the sales nymph had thrown into the deal, but there is some squeaking interference that dims the cheery police talk.
-“It would be expensive,” a female voice squeaks.
-“What did Attenborough say in Jurassic Park, no expenses spared,” a male voice squeaks back. Perhaps it is about a contract job, and the police listens in?

-“I don’t know what the kids are up to, but money would help. You should start your own Jurassic Park, or, perhaps, the kids could start it for you,” the hit woman explains.
-“It was DoubleYou Bush and his gang of incompetent, ignorant, arrogant, zealous, lazy, under-endowed, newborn cronies that started this Jurassic Park. And the dinosaurs are still with us. No expenses spared. You have some ideas?” Too late to hit Bush now, Wesley thinks.

His cell phone tickles in his breast pocket. A text message. From this customer. ‘? r u.’ He is still several minutes away from the Pierre. He pushes the gas pedal, then decides to text back. Explain, save the tip. He gets the cell-phone out again, and starts typing with his fat fingers. “I have an idea,” the hit woman squeaks.

Fourteen thousand pounds of overstretched, overstated, discontinued vehicle design from Mega Coachbuilders with extra headroom and legroom, luxury leather seating, multiple large LCD screens, awesome lighting, mood-lit bar and VIP area hit the mis-parked, mis-labeled surveillance vehicle at fifty five miles per hour. 1.9 million joules of kinetic energy were being released in the space of 0.2 seconds. Two joules end up in sound waves, of which one micro joule reaches the ears of the retreating NYPD officer. He turns around. If this were a movie, it had to be in slow motion, he thinks.


Continues here.