Who is Hiding Behind These Masks?
SCENE ONE: The President of the United States, BARACK OBAMA, is sitting in the back of his plushly-appointed limousine. A TV screen showing constantly looping DVD’s of OBAMA’S greatest speeches is strategically placed in front of his eyes. It has a calming effect on him in these days of stress and strain. OBAMA is smoking a cigarette to further relax him in preparation for the meeting he is about to attend.
LIMO DRIVER: Where to, Mr. President? We’ve been driving in circles for 15 minutes now.
OBAMA: Is anyone following us, Frank?
LD: Just the usual photographers and Secret Service, Mr. President.
OBAMA: Ditch the photogs, Frank. The Secret Service knows where we’re going.
LD (with slowly dawning realization): Ohhhhhh. We’re going THERE. (impressed and determined) Hang on, sir. I’ll get you there in no time.
OBAMA (leaning back in his seat, enjoying his smoke): Good, good. Don’t want to keep them waiting. They hate to wait.
SCENE TWO: The hallway of an anonymous office building somewhere in DC. There is no art on the walls, which are a tasteful ecru. A plush beige carpet leads to a nondescript blond wood door. OBAMA walks confidently down the hall and approaches the door.
DOOR (in sultry female voice): Welcome, President Obama.
OBAMA (with a big smile): Hello there, sweetie.
DOOR: Please speak today’s password phrase.
OBAMA (exasperated): Come on, you just recognized me! I’m the President of the United States. Just let me in already!
DOOR (implacably): Please speak today’s password phrase.
OBAMA: Awwwww, shit. Uh, um…”We get the bucks, your life sucks?”
DOOR: Password incorrect. Two more tries, Mr. President.
OBAMA: The notion that somehow you would deny me entry…I’m the leader of the free world! How can you do this to me?!
DOOR: Do not try to baffle me with bullshit, Mr. President. I am not made to Obot specifications. (implacably) Please speak today’s password phrase.
OBAMA: SHIT! Uh, ummmmm…
(The trademark grin spreads across his face as he remembers the password)
OBAMA: Blood for oil, we get the spoils!
DOOR: Thank you, Mr. President. (the door clicks open) Welcome to the meeting.
(OBAMA walks through the door. LIGHTS OUT.)
SCENE THREE: A typical conference room. The bland decor of the hallway is echoed in the blonde wood, beige leather chairs and beige plush carpeting. The only ornamentation is one large P on the center of the back panel of the wall facing the audience.
Clustered around the stage left side of the table are five people in black robes and white, expressionless masks in the Greek tragedy tradition. Their sex, age and physical appearance are all indeterminate. They have voice-scramblers in their masks, to further hide their identities; the effect of this alteration is to make their words even more inhumane and eerie.
BARACK OBAMA enters stage right, strutting confidently. He takes his seat at the table, across from the five mysterious figures.
OBAMA: Hey, guys, how’s it going?
FIGURE 1 (pointing a finger intimidatingly): WE will ask the questions. YOU will answer.
OBAMA (only slightly daunted): Don’t worry about it, I’m cool. Uh, um…mind if I smoke in here?
FIGURE 2 (forbiddingly): Yes.
OBAMA (more sheepishly): Oh.
FIGURE 3: If you have QUITE finished stalling, young man, we will now proceed with your 100-day performance review.
(A screen comes down in front of the “P” in the back of the room. A blank report card entitled “BARACK OBAMA: FIRST 100 DAYS” appears on the screen. As the figures name the items being graded, the name of the item and the grade fill in the blanks.)
FIGURE 4 (whispering to 3): Are you sure the report card format was such a good idea? He’s not Dubya, you know.
FIGURE 3 (whispering back): Trust me.
FIGURE 5: Now, let’s check your progress on the Patriarchal Agenda. Hmmmm…let’s see. Item number one: Keeping our war machine oiled and running smoothly.
FIGURE 1 (snickering): Oiled! Ha ha ha!
(ALL FIGURES laugh. OBAMA looks puzzled, but gamely joins in the laughter.)
FIGURE 5 (pleased): I thought you’d like that! Anyway, our employee here gets…oooh! An A Plus!
OBAMA (preening): You’re darned right. And it wasn’t easy, either, especially when I talked about how I was against the Iraq war for two years and promised to end it…and now, I’m getting away with continuing it indefinitely. Some trick, huh? Plus, I’m even doing a surge in Afghanistan and building up to a third war in Pock-ee-stan – and not a protest in sight!
ALL FIGURES: Bravo!