Just As I Thought

Shock and Awe on Bryan Street

This wonderful piece by Maurice Martin appeared in today’s Washington Post:

My housemates wanted me out of our group house. They said my presence was “oppressive.” Sure, a little mold had grown on my shelf in the fridge. And yes, I forget to clean the cat’s litter box for a month at a time.

But “oppressive”? Please.

They knew the landlord wouldn’t do anything, so Brad had the idea to call the Department of Defense. He has spent the entire Iraq war glued to the TV and has taken to addressing the talking heads, Cabinet secretaries and generals by their first names. “Tommy [as in Franks] will help us get rid of Maurice,” he said. “A little shock and awe, a little room freshener, and the reign of terror will be over.” He and Debbie drew up a declaration that said I was developing “odors of mass destruction.”

They claimed I was a threat to regional stability (the “region” extending from the back porch to the laundry room, where I had left some old socks).

The hawks in Congress declared the upcoming war on Maurice to be not only winnable, but affordable. My house stands just a mile and a half from the Pentagon — troops and materiel could flow easily down Lee Highway, as long as the invasion didn’t take place during rush hour.

“Our conflict is with Maurice only,” White House spokesman Ari Fleischer declared from the TV. “We will try to minimize the impact on other residents of the house.” The TV displayed split-screen images of Brad, Debbie and my cat, Bocci.

I wanted to get my side of the story out, but appearing in public seemed too risky. So the next time Brad ordered pizza, I paid the delivery guy $20 to act as my spokesperson. Standing on the front porch, he told the press that my special elite guard (by which he meant Bocci) had repelled the invading forces. But this didn’t quite wash because the reporters could see, 10 yards away, psyops specialists from the Army’s 18th Airborne who were distracting my special elite guard with a piece of brightly colored yarn.

With the fighting over, soldiers in chemical-resistant suits swarmed the house. Debbie spoke to CNN about my many violations of human rights (such as all the times I ate food from her shelf in the ‘fridge), and how much she was looking forward to democracy and some kind of Marshall Plan, which she hoped would include a new Jetta. Her primping had paid off — she looked great. She then helped U.S. soldiers topple my Star Trek figurines.

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