25 February 2017
Scene: The Oval Office. Enter Supreme Chancellor Donald Trump and Chief Strategist Steve Bannon. Trump sits at his Resolute desk; his hands are clasped together, and his elbows are up on the desk; his face is strained, and his tongue sticks out of the corner of his mouth. He’s putting everything he’s got into concentrating on the task at hand. Bannon sits in a chair across from Trump; he’s holding a binder in his lap, and he’s flipping through various important-looking documents.
Bannon: O.K., Mr. Supreme Chancellor. Nuclear war.
Trump: Hooo boy. O.K. Um. Nukes. Very bad. Only I know how bad they really are, because no one has seen up close and personal just how destructive a nuke is, other than me. Umm. What else? Oh! Why do we even have them if we aren’t going to use them. How was that?
Bannon: Perfect, sir.
Trump: That was a tough one.
Bannon. Yes it was, sir. But you have to prep for the tough questions just like you would the easy ones.
Trump: I really don’t like getting tough questions, Steve.
Bannon: No one does, sir. But that’s what happens when you don’t have a state-run media. The press just makes shit up and tries to back you into a corner with their “alternative alternative facts.”
Trump: We’re all getting very good at doing the quotation movements with our fingers.
Bannon: That we are, sir. This is a very successful administration, so far. But so while we’re on the topic: The media. Go.
Trump: Wow, you really caught me off guard with that one, Steve.
Bannon: [Looking at watch] Ten seconds, sir.
Trump: Um. The media. Enemy of the American people. Fake news. A bunch of liars. Um. Oh geeze. It’s a witch hunt, basically, with them. Um. Um. They should just name all their sources, because they’re just making shit up about me and citing anonymous sources. Um.
Bannon: Time’s up.
Trump: [Wiping sweat from his brow with a very damp and orange-stained handkerchief.] I got most of it, there, I think.
Bannon: It was good. We can do better, though. What specifically about the leaks do we want to talk about?
Trump: Oh! Um. About how the leaks are real but the news isn’t.
Trump: But we don’t mention how that doesn’t make sense, right? About how if the leaks are fake, then they can’t actually be leaks? Sort of by definition?
Bannon: Very good, sir. No, we don’t mention that.
[Trump leans back in his chair and crosses his arms triumphantly.]
Bannon: Here’s a curveball for you.
Trump: [Breathing heavy] O.K. I’m ready. Shoot.
[Trump makes an exhausted sound and puts his head in his hands.]
Bannon: You can do it, sir.
Trump: Obamacare. Very bad. Destroying jobs and the economy. Um. Um. Um. Give me a second.
Bannon: Plenty of time, sir.
Trump: All the numbers about it are fake. About all the people who now have quality health insurance specifically because of the law. All of it made up. And we’re going to repeal it and. Something. I can’t remember, Steve.
Bannon: Repeal and…
Bannon: I’ll use it in a sentence. Donald Trump wants to repeal Obamacare and blank it with something much, much better.
Bannon: No, sir, you fill in the blank.
Trump: Oh. Um. Immigrants? Muslim ban?
Bannon: Starts with an “R.” The whole saying is very catchy.
Trump: I’m guessing … replace?
Bannon: Very, very good.
Trump: Can I go watch T.V. now?
Bannon: Just a couple more.
Trump: My brain hurts. My head just feels all fuzzy and exhausted, now.
Bannon: Almost done, sir. Antisemitism.
Trump: O.K. We went over this yesterday.
[Bannon slowly nods]
Trump: I won the election even though no one thought I would. By a whole lot. We won by like the widest margin of all time. What else? The prime minister of Jew country said I love Jews. No one loves Jews more than me. Um.
Bannon: One more, sir.
[Trump shakes his head.]
Bannon: Your daughter is…
Trump: Super hot? Um. I’d be dating her if she weren’t my daughter?
Bannon: Not quite.
Trump: She’s. Um. Wait. Is she? No. Is she Jewish?
Bannon: Bingo. Very good, sir. And so is your son-in-law.
Trump: I see. And that means that I can’t hate Jews, because they’re Jewish, and even though I knew her before she converted, it still holds up? They’re not like tokens or anything?
Bannon: Correct. You’re getting very good at this. O.K. Last one.
Trump: I’m ready.
Bannon: Just complete the sentence.
Trump: Which one?
Bannon: The one I’m about to say.
Trump: Got it.
Bannon: This administration is not a group of backstabbing know-nothings who’ve turned the largest bureaucracy in the world into a chaotic mess; we’re in fact very much in control of things, and this administration is a, what?
Trump: Laughing stock?
Bannon: No, that’s what the press says.
Trump. Oh. Right. Um. Illegitimate authoritarian regime?
Bannon: Not quite. That’s what liberal activists are saying.
Trump: People are actually saying that?
Bannon: Only a few, sir. Remember, you had that vary large crowd at you inauguration. It was the largest crowd ever. So it’s impossible, mathematically, for more than like two or three people to say stuff like that.
Trump: Yeah, that does make sense, mathematically.
Bannon: Keep guessing, sir.
Trump: I’m drawing a blank, honestly.
Bannon: You’ve said it before. During that shit-hitting-the-fan press conference you held last week.
Bannon: I’ll give you a hint. Most people say something like, “a well-oiled machine,” but you said something different, which is fine. It’s just fine, that you don’t know what the proper saying is.
Bannon: No. That’s another thing you don’t know that we’ll need to work on.
Trump: Can I please just go watch T.V. now? Hannity is almost on and I can’t miss it if he talks about me.
Bannon: Fine you can go. We’ll continue this tomorrow after breakfast.
[Exit Trump, who like half skips, half runs out of the Oval Office.]
Bannon: But only one bowl of ice cream this time, you hear?