In My World: Ticking Time Bomb

This blog post was written in real time.

Barack Obama walked into the Oval office and turned on the lights. He then heard the door slam behind him. He turned around to see a grizzled-looking man. “Who are you?”

“Mr. President, I am former CTU agent Jack Bauer.”

“Oh, thank me,” Obama sighed. “I thought you were a teabagger.”

“I’m here to tell you about a grave threat to this country.”

“Why did you have to sneak in like this? Couldn’t you have gone through official channels?”

“Sir, I didn’t have time.”

“Couldn’t you have texted me?”

“I didn’t have time — I’m really bad at texting. Takes me like ten minutes for a simple reply.”

“Then how do you update your Twitter feed?”

“Sir, we’re getting off topic. There is a threat to this nation from either nuclear or biological weapons… or possibly biological weapons that are radioactive.”

Obama gasped. “That sounds bad!”

“It is very bad, sir.”

“Any idea where this attack might take place?”

“Usually, terrorist attacks occur in the LA area, but that’s started to change in the past few years.”

Obama shook his head. “I don’t like going to LA; I always get attacked by cougars there.”

“I am not surprised. Anyway, to find the details on this attack, I need to use harsh interrogation techniques against a known terrorist we’ve detained. I wanted to get your permission for that.”

Obama thought for a moment. “Alright. If the situation is that dire, I’ll allow you to loudly shout at him.”

“Sir, this will take more than shouting.”

“You want to slap his belly? I’m not sure I’m comfortable with that.”

“I was thinking of a lot more than belly slapping.”

“If you’re suggesting waterboarding, there is no way I’m approving that.”

“Sir, I warm up with waterboarding.”

Obama frowned. “Torture is wrong; you are a bad man. This is why people like me hate America.”

“Sir, I know there is a lot of pressure on you as this nation’s third black president — and the first who isn’t a Palmer — and it has to be scary knowing the last half-dozen presidents all ended up either dead or in prison…”

“I’m hoping for prison!”

“We all are. Anyway, I know there must be a lot of pressure on you, and this must offend your sensibilities, but there is literally a ticking time bomb out there–”

“I would think time bombs these days would use digital timers.”

“Excuse me?”

“They would use digital timers, so there wouldn’t be any ticking. Thus you used the word ‘literally’ incorrectly. I’m very smart.”

“Sir, once again, I think you’re focusing on the wrong things. Tens of thousands of people could die unless I get the information out of that terrorist.”

“Well, Jack, tens of thousands of people die from car accidents each year, so I don’t know why you want me to get all worked up over that. Here’s what I’ll do, though. I’ll release a bunch of prisoners from Gitmo, and we’ll see if that will impress the terrorist enough to talk.”

“This is a man who thinks nothing of murdering children; I sincerely doubt he’ll talk out of the goodness of his heart.”

Obama rolled his eyes. “Yeah, I know; you red-staters just want to hurt all the bad men and think that solves everything. Instead of torturing, though, have you ever tried to be his friend? Maybe give him a hug?”

“A hug will not do anything, sir.”

“Maybe you’re hugging wrong. Here, give me a hug so I can see how you’re doing it.”

“Mr. President, I never put my arms around another man without him ending up dead afterward.”

“I don’t think this conversation is going anywhere. Here’s what I’ll do for you, Jack: I’ll try to make sure you have a fair trial for even suggesting torture. I’ll probably have to make an example out of you, though; I don’t want the rest of the world thinking we let people like you still run around.”

The door opened and Joe Biden walked in. “Hey, I just wanted to–”

Bauer immediately got Biden in a choke hold and choked him unconscious.

“Hey! That was the vice president! And the doctors have already been saying he’s not getting enough oxygen to his brain!”

“I’m well aware of who he is, sir; I just didn’t have time to explain things to him.”

“What’s it with you and not having enough time? Sounds like you just need better time management.”

“I’ll take that under advisement. Anyway, I guess I’ll just have to pursue this without your permission. Before I go, though, I want to warn you that I think there is a mole in your administration undermining you from the inside.”

“Really? I thought that was just incompetence.”

Bauer thought about that. “Yeah, I guess that is the more likely explanation.”

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  1. You wrote that in real time, Frank? It’s terrifying to think of what you’ll be able to do when you learn to write in complex time.


  2. #9 Silicon Valley Jim:

    you mean in the frequency domain rather than the time domain? Yeah, that is a scary thought, having Frank stop posting regular updates and just getting to observe the periodicity of his articles and his funniness and checking it for trends.


  3. NY Times-Jan 2010 (API) -Attorney Genera Eric holder today announced the arrest of rogue federal CTU agent Jack Bauer. “Mr. Bauer has long been on our RADAR screen,” Said the attorney general in today’s hastily called press conference. At the very moment we arrested him Mr. Bauer had actually entered the presidents office and was regaling him with a fanciful tale of Islamic terrorists wanting to attack the USA. The Attorney General said the arrest came at a time when Justice Department resources are stretched to their limit, due to various ongoing investigations of former Bush Administration officials and an unending investigation of the CIA. Normally as busy as we are investigating Republicans and prosecuting Navy SEALS this man would have gone unnoticed, but what really got our attention was Mr. Bauer’s statement that he just “Warms up with water boarding.” Anyone expressing sentiments like that is a prime candidate for investigation by this department. The Attorney General also stated that when arrested Bauer had Vice president Biden in a headlock and was in the process of choking him to death. Fortunately Bauer was captured and subdued before he could actually take the life of the nations beloved Vice President. In an unrelated development it was reported today that a radioactive, possibly biological, or a biological, possibly radioactive, device was detonated in New York City causing millions of dollars in damage and killing several thousand people.


  4. In an unrelated development it was reported today that a radioactive, possibly biological, or a biological, possibly radioactive, device was detonated in New York City causing millions of dollars in damage and killing several thousand people.

    “Experts” say that the detonation was likely triggered by residual ill feelings resulting from 8 years of “failed policies” from the previous administration, and that if the culprits could, they would make it clear that the attack should in no way reflect on current and Glorious President Barack Obama, they’re just still mad at us from before. And that they’d really like us to elect him again in 2012, honest.

    And of course, it goes without saying that stricter gun control would have prevented this device from being built in the first place, and The Children™ would be safe.

    Heh. I also liked “Thank me.”



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