(Presidential candidate HENRY Thorten is standing at a podium in front of a sea of reporters. He is just finishing his speech)

HENRY: ....and so, it is with great fervor that I will strive to make this country, the once proud land it was for my grandfather. Like we say around my campaign headquarters in my hometown of Chessups Bay, 'To restore heritage and honor to a truly great land, that is the greatest gift one man can give...'

(HENRY gives himself a moment of quiet reflection. The room is silent except for the occasionally click and flash of a camera)

HENRY: If you have any questions for me, now would be an excellent opportunity.

(The room explodes. Shouts of reporters trying to get their say)

HENRY: Jessica.

JESSICA: Mr. Thorten, what do you have to say about the allegations of Mrs. Thorten having an affair with an eleven-month old giraffe?

HENRY: They are absolutely untrue...and how do you people believe any of this garbage?

JESSICA: Have you spoken with the giraffe?

HENRY: There is no giraffe. Thomas.

THOMAS: Why do you hate Swedish people?

HENRY: What?!? I don't hate the Swedes! Where did you get that one?

THOMAS: Why are you yelling at me?

HENRY: I'm not yelling at you, Thomas, I just think that story is preposterous.

JESSICA: Mr. Thorten, are you harassing him because he's Swedish?


THOMAS: But would you if I were?

HENRY: No! Can we move on please? George.

GEORGE: As an immigrant from Sweden myself, I find it horrible that you won't even allow us to voice our opinion without a barrage of hostility! What should the Swedish people of this country think?

HENRY: I don't hate Swedish people!

GEORGE: Then why were you yelling at him?

HENRY: I didn't yell at him! He's not even Swedish, for God's sake!

GEORGE: I am. Why are you yelling at me?

HENRY: Because you're not listening and you're asking ridiculous questions.

GEORGE: Is that your message to the children of Sweden? That they're not listen and they're asking ridiculous questions?

HENRY: Of course not. Listen, can we quit fooling around here and ask some questions that relate to my stance on some issues, please? Yes, Carla.

CARLA: Do you like my blouse?

HENRY: ....Huh?....Yeah sure, it looks very nice. Who's next? Frank, yes.

FRANK: Is it true you're having an affair with Carla Hunton?


HENRY: Where the hell are you people getting this nonsense?

FRANK: You just said you thought she looked nice.

HENRY: She asked me how her blouse looked. I said nice. That doesn't mean I'm having an affair with the woman! You people, just...

CARLA: Is it true that I'm pregnant with your baby?

HENRY: My GOD! What is going on? This is a joke, right? C'mon!

GEORGE: Do you fear that the baby will grow up in a nation with Swedes?

HENRY: ...

THOMAS: Is there any truth behind the rumors of your secret pact with the citizens of Canada to replace the pope with character actor Abe Vigoda, thus allowing you complete control over Roman Catholicism, not to mention a firm grasp on character actors the world over?

HENRY: ...

FRANK: What are your views concerning welfare?

HENRY: Finally, a decent questi--

FRANK: In regards to your devious plan to ship welfare mothers to an island to work in your salt mines.

HENRY: Can I say something here?

(the reporters all sit down, still anxious to finish with their questions. HENRY settles himself)

HENRY: I don't know what you people are doing. It's not funny; it's not ethical. I am a good man with strong moral fiber. I don't have much of a temper, but when you start in with questions that tabloids wouldn't even bother with, I begin to get upset. The media is supposed to cover the issues. It's the media's job to tell the people what the candidate's views are, not to belittle him with asinine questions you thought up in the lobby. Now I'm not going to stand up here, wasting my time, listening to journalistic integrity go down the drain. If you have some real questions, I would be more than happy to answer them, as that is my primary concern as someone who would like a presidential appointment. If not, I will leave this podium and get some work done.

DIANE: I have a real question, sir.

HENRY: Yes, Diane, please.

DIANE: Have you gotten any closer to choosing a running mate yet?

HENRY: Thank you, Diane, that is a wonderful question. Unfortunately, while my staff and I have made some concrete decisions between Senator Dolman and Senator Hinkle, we are still unable to make a statement at this time. However, as the campaign draws closer, we will inform the public as to whom we have chosen. I assure you, the best possible candidate will be chosen to serve as the nation's Vice President. Does anyone else have a real question?

DIANE: Yes sir, one more if I could, please.

HENRY: Feel free, Diane.

DIANE: Have you had sex with either or both of the Senators?

HENRY: Oh, for Christ's sake.

(HENRY stands down from the podium and exits the stage to return to his staff)

STAFF MEMBER: It went wonderfully sir.

About the author:

Steve Delahoyde is a writer working in the glitzy, thrill-a-minute world of Bio-Medicine. He knows that he doesn't have a whole lot to offer such an attractive, interesting person like yourself, but thinks it would be really swell if you were to go to the big Spring Formal with him.