So last week, when you said you were quitting this blog to go be Jim Risch’s press secretary, were you kidding? Or what?
Yes, I was kidding. I assumed everyone knew that.
Not everyone, Mr. Cope. There were people who took you seriously. Do you think it was fair to them that you didn’t tell them you were just kidding?
My goodness, I hope you’re not holding me accountable for other people’s shallowness of comprehension. Besides, who on earth would believe that Jim Risch would ever hire me? For his press secretary or anything else?
Uh… well… uh… I… uh…
Ridiculous! Any person who believed that would have to be a real dope, don’t you think?
Well… I… uh… I suppose… uh… well…
Exactly! A real dope. And what am I supposed to do? Announce I’m about to do some kidding before I do it, so the dopes don’t get all confused? How ridiculous is that, huh? Imagine what humor would be like if comedy had to come with a warning label. WARNING: THE JOKE YOU ARE ABOUT TO EXPERIENCE MAY NOT BE ENTIRELY TRUE! Ridiculous!
Uh… well… I… er…
So, is that what you came to interview me about, or was there something else?
Uh, no. I was merely hoping to clear up some lingering questions about what your plans are.
And have you?
I… uh… guess so. Now that I know you are definitely not going to work as Jim Risch’s press secretary, I guess that… uh…
Jeez, just the thought of it. Working for Jim Risch. Gag on a stick! Makes my skin crawl. Doesn’t it you? I mean… Jim Risch
Uh… so… uh, Mr. Cope, does this mean that the job of being Jim Risch’s press secretary is still open?
Who knows? Far as I know, it’s never been open. Hell, as far as I know, Jim Risch doesn’t even have
a press secretary. Who’d want to hear about anything Jim Risch has to say, anyway? I mean… hey, it’s not like anything important ever came from the mouth of Jim Risch, is it?
Uh… yeah. I guess. But as far as you know, Jim Risch
might have a press secretary, and the job
might be open. Is that about right?
I guess, yeah. But think about it… what kind of self-respecting journalist would want to go to work as Jim Risch’s press secretary? Huh? Huh? Think about it.
Uuuuuh… gee… I don’t know. Maybe a journalist who isn’t very confident there’s much of a future in journalism.
Well, maybe if all the good
journalists weren’t abandoning ship, snatching any puny PR gloss job they can get their claws on, then journalism might have a brighter future, you suppose? They hop from reporting the truth over to polishing the truth, or even obscuring
the truth, then complain that people have lost faith in journalism. It’s like cops on the take from mobsters griping about the lack of respect for law enforcement, right?
Well, er… uh… Mr. Cope, I just wanted to get your confirmation on that…
Or like politicians who leave office and become lobbyists, know what I mean? Or military brass who retire and go to work for defense contractors. See what I mean? It’s all becoming one big mashed-up ball of interchangeable components.
…on that one matter, so I believe I have everything I nee…
There are no clear lines anymore. You can see that, can’t you? You’re a bright young journalist. You ought to write a story about it, about how the whole country is dissolving into a big gloppy mess of professional whoredom. What’s next? Firemen who go to work for arsonists? Doctors who take jobs promoting trans-fats and smoking? College professors singing the praises of dropping out of high school? Dentists who…
…everything I need, so I should get back to the office and get this…
…sell soda pop and candy on the side? Investment planners who recommend trips to Jackpot? Professional athletes who hawk Snuggies and Cheesy Puffs? Veterinarians who…
Goodbye, Mr. Cope. Until next time.
…throw dog fighting in the back room? Environmentalists who take jobs from BP? Preachers who…