Washington, DC - A mistaken assumption that a microphone was off has landed President Bush in hot water with French President Jacques Chirac. The incident occurred while the President was recording a special message to be included in an upcoming episode of NBC's reality program, "The Next Action Star."
Mr. Bush spoke passionately and at length about his love of reality television - a fact later confirmed by several aides. These aides indicated that following an especially intense episode of one of what the President refers to as "my programs", they are forced to join Mr. Bush in critiquing every aspect of the show. "It gets old fast," conceded one aide.
During a break, Mr. Bush took the opportunity to stretch his legs and walked around the Oval Office. Pausing to look at a large globe, the President was heard to comment, "Hey, isn't tomorrow some kind of frog holiday? We need to send Jacques some kind of gift basket. Have Rove send over some good cheese - like Velveeta or something."
The President then affected a French accent. "Oui, oui, I am zee President of France and I no wear zee underpants." Mr. Bush next began propositioning various women in the room, again mimicking Jacques Chirac, "Ah cherie, we could make zee beautiful music together - as soon as I take off zee frilly ladies underpants I am wearing."
The President's antics - which continued along this vein - had his staff and the NBC crew in stitches. Unfortunately, Mr. Bush did not stop by simply assailing Mr. Chirac's masculinity but went on to refer to the French as "just a bunch of stupid stooges for the damn krauts," and "the worst smelling bipeds on the planet."
He went on to suggest that if one were to look up homosexual in the dictionary, a picture of French Foreign Minister Dominique de Villepin would appear beside the definition. "Unless I am mistaken, I'm pretty sure Villepin is French for gay bath house'."
When Vice President Cheney entered to Oval Office to discover the source of the loud laughter, the President immediately accosted him. "Hey Dick, what is the frog holiday they are celebrating tomorrow?" When told it was Bastille Day, the President began an ersatz ballet. "Look at me," he shouted, to the amusement of all, "I am doing some bastille!"
After dancing about the office for ten minutes, the President began losing steam, but this did not prevent him from one final dig at the French. Draping an arm over the Vice President's shoulder, Mr. Bush was heard to say, "Thank God the frog army wasn't in Iraq, those dumb bastards couldn't hit a lake if the fell out of a boat - you know what I mean?" The Vice President laughed and nodded in agreement.
Unfortunately for the President, one of the sound engineers happened to be French.
Within thirty minutes of returning to NBC's DC studio, the unnamed engineer had forwarded a digital copy of the Oval Office session to the French Ambassador Jean-David Levitte who in turn had it delivered to President Chirac. According to aides, although he received the content after 11:00 PM Paris time, President Chirac wasted no time in contacting President Bush.
Aides in both capitols confirmed that Mr. Chirac had "strong words" for Mr. Bush and that while on the phone Mr. Bush was appropriately contrite. Upon hanging up however, he turned to his aides and again affecting a French accent said, "Please pass zee Grey Poupon."