Recently, columnist/funnyman Pat Hurley, claimed that Saddam Hussein would appeal his death sentence and run for the U.S. Presidency. Pat was half right. Saddam is alive and well, living here in the U.S. It was not Saddam who was hanged in Iraq, but a poorly paid double, who when you think about it gives new meaning to the Biblical quotation, 'the wages of sin are death."
Saddam is in the United States, and has been since at least April of this year. I know this, because he lives next door to me. Not only that, I spoke with the man.
At first I thought that my neighbor's "uncle" Ricardo simply bore an uncanny resemblance to the deposed Iraqi dictator. However, one night last week I got my neighbor inebriated, and he spilled his guts.
"Tim, your hunch is correct. You see, though I am but nineteen, I have been in the employ of the CIA since I crossed over into this country four years ago. Saddam was relocated to the U.S. and it so happens that my wife Consuela and I were ordered to serve as his cover."
I leaped into the air and shouted, "I knew it! The salt and pepper beards and craggy mug gave him away." My neighbor (whose name I cannot mention), whipped out a pistol and said between clenched teeth, "Sit down and lower your hands, you overweight infidel!"
I laughed (and sat). "You got that from ol' Soddy, didn't you?" He replied, "Yesm but only the part about you being an infidel. Your mirror has been doing you no favors if you cannot tell that you are?"
I angrily cut him off. "The mirror came from a funhouse, okay? Now let's get back to Saddam. He's not going to be able remain incognito forever."
I then told him about Mr. Hurley's article. My neighbor laughed. "Saddam read that article and laughed. Yes, Hurley got a few things right, but the U.S. Presidency is on his long-range plans. Saddam realizes that he must build his cover first."
"First, he will become a coach for one of your local Pop Warner teams."
"Did you inform him that our version of football is quite different from the one played in his former country?"
"Indeed. Right now, he's upstairs watching that classic AFC Playoff game between the Dolphins and the Chargers."
"You might also want to inform him that here in America, we do not shoot the players at halftime if they are performing poorly." My neighbor nodded. "I explained, and Uncle Ric--er, Saddam, believes that such an attitude is one of the reasons we have become a nation of soft, bloated, sissy boys. In fact, he speaks with tears in his eyes when he realizes that young people here think suicide bombing is madness. He says American youth have no ambition."
"Youngsters here are ambitious. So much so, we plan to take his country and make it a subsidiary of ours."
"Don't say that around him," my neighbor warned. "He isn't big on wisecracks."
"Well, I can say one thing about American youth; They might not strao a bomb to themselves and blow up an embassy, but they'd firebomb a cathouse if they thought they could get seventy-two beautiful women out of it."
My neighbor ignored my feeble attempt at humor. "Let us get back to politics," he suggested. "Saddam, will take baby steps to the Presidency. He--"
That's when Saddam himself stepped outside, wearing a polo shirt, Dockers, sandals and coincidentally smoking a Camel cigarette. Also in hand was a can of Coca-Cola and a large bag of nacho-flavored Dorito's. Saddam smiled at me. His eyes twinkled as he spoke.
"So, you think my face us craggy do you?" He laughed, and it sounded just like Eddie Murphy's. "My friend, trust me when I say that no one will ever mistake you for Denzel Washington." He popped the top on his soda. "I will first run for Mayor of this small town (Pittsburg, California)."
"Just don't forget where you are," I cautioned. "You can't close each meeting here with that 'death to America? rap."
"Yes, that will be a hard habit to break. I was thinking if I slipped and said it during a city council meeting, I could laugh and then yell "psyyyyych!"
I shook my head. "Okay, let's say you make it to Mayor, then what?"
"then what? It is really quite simple. The people will become addicted to my greatness and I will make the leap to Governor."
"You really believe that?"
'take the sarcasm out of your voice, infidel." His eyes still had that sparkle, but there was something sinister behind them. Then his gaze again softened and ghe continued. 'think about it, Stelly. If two half-assed "actors??and I?m using the term 'actors' loosely'then surely a natural ham such as I, can win the Governorship. Who will stop me? A man destined for stardom? Why, it would be as if your great Thespian Jack Nicholson were running!"
"Which Jack Nicholson'the serious minded Jack that we saw in "Blood and Wine," or the Captain Looney Tunes version of 'the Shining'?"
"Of course, the former." Sadam took a puff of his cigarette. "From there, I catapult myself into the Presidential race."
"As a Democrat?"
"Ho, Hurley's sources mislead him on that one. The Democrats already have two bloated, skirt-chasers who are full of themselves - Kennedy and Clinton. I plan to run as an Green Party candidate."
"Because you're for preserving the environment?"
Saddam shook his head. "Don't be silly. Remember, it was I who torched the oil fields of Kuwait. I'm running as that party's nominee because green is my favorite color."
"Great platform," I mumbled.
"Yes, neighbor, I will become the first third-party candidate of relevance. John Anderson, Ross Perot (he pronounced the name "parrot?), Donald Trump, Jesse Ventura - all shmucks!"
"How strange that you would use am insult that is associated with Jewish comics."
"the Jews, ha!" Saddam grimaced, as if someone had snuck up on him and punched him in the gut. "they won't be laughing when President Saddam is swept into office!"
"You mean, you plan to--"
Saddam smiled and stepped back toward the screen door. "I see I have already said too much." Our eyes met. "Keep this on the downlow, friend, and if elected I will reward you seventy-two virgins."
"At this phase in my life, I'd settle for three attractive porno actresses and a bi-sexual midget."
Saddam frowned. "You Americans have no morals at all," he said, going back inside and slamming the screen door behind him. Several seconds later I heard him shout, 'death to America!"
My neighbor shrugged and asked, "Can I get a refill on the Chivas?"