State of the Union Rough Draft

An audiotape of President Bush practicing Tuesday night's State of the Union speech was anonymously messengered to me just hours ago. While it is an obvious early draft, it appears to have been written -- or even improvised -- by the president himself. Here is a transcript of the tape:

Mr. Speaker, Mr. Vice President (wherever you may be), members of the 107th Congress, distinguished guests, Fluffy, Kenny Boy, my fallow Americans:

I'm real sleepy, so I'll keep this short. My mother always told me to chew my pretzel before I swallow.

(Bush imitates raucous group laughter, complete with echo-chamber effect)

Okay, okay, calm down. It wasn't that funny!

I stand here before you as a proud American, a proud president, a proud father, a proud uncle. In the past few months we have seen what makes this great country so great. We have stood up to fear and said, buy more stuff!

We have stood up to evildoers and said, If you don't stop trying to kill us we are going to stop sending you weapons!

We have stood up to corporate criminals and said, Next time, don't get caught!

(President imitates a standing ovation)

Shut up, you powerless little weasels.

I'm kidding.

No I'm not.

Yes I am!

As America returns to its routine and the wake of horror ebbs, we all carry painful memories with us. But some have endured more pain than others. Although the great tragedy has touched us all, people like Linda Lay -- who is here with us tonight -- have been made to suffer the most.

Don't cry, Linda. America will wipe your tears.

Linda's husband Ken embodies what it means to be an American. Ken was one of the heroic figures that led the charge out just as everything around him was collapsing.

Although he could not save everyone -- in fact, he was only able to help his closest friends and associates -- he nonetheless personifies my own definition of patriotism.

(18 minutes of snoring ensue.)

On a closing note, I'd like to take this opportunity to thank my administration. Donald Rumsfeld, thanks for being such a charming asshole. Condi Rice, thanks for being a black woman. Colin Powell, thanks for being a black man and for finally learning to keep your opinions to yourself when they don't coincide with what everyone else thinks.

And a special thanks to Vice President Cheney. I miss you, Mr. Vice President. I implore you to come out of hiding. I saw you on TV last weekend. I worry that those extra pounds you have put on in the dark caves of Virginia will weigh heavy on your heart. Please take care. You are making this great country nervous. You are making me nervous.

I'm feeling woozy, Mr. Vice President.

(Sound of presidential head hitting presidential floor.)

(End of tape.)

David Turnley ( writes satires for

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