The Elephant Tree - part 7

continuing...the reporter and the photog were arguing about the split of the Pulitzer Prize money when the elephant, the donkey and our narrator slipped away.

the plot thickens as the CIA...the FBI and the White-house become involved...among others...

//  //  //

The dumpy reporter and the strange photographer were not in a discussion.  They were in a very heated argument.  They were arguing over how they were going to split the Pulitzer money.

The reporter was sure he deserved it all and the photographer was sure that he deserved at least half, if not more.

“Don’t be ridiculous, the Pulitzer is a writer’s award.  If you want an award, you can submit your pictures for consideration to thousands of different places.  There is only one Pulitzer and it’s for writing not taking your stupid pictures.”

“That’s a laugh.  If you didn't have my pictures, you wouldn't have a story.  Why do you think they always send me with you?  Haven’t you heard about the picture-word ratio?  The way you write, one of my pictures is worth a whole book.  You need my pictures so that people will understand your stories.”

Naturally the writer was very upset with the stupid photographer.  What did a photographer know about writing?  Anyone could point a camera and push a button.

His cell rang.

“How’s the interview coming?  We need statements.”

Both men looked at where the elephant, donkey and the retired undertaker had been sitting.

“It’s almost ready boss. Just a few more questions and I’ll post the story.”

“Post what?" The photog said.  "It looks to me like they have vanished again.  Who are you going to ask what?"

“Why don’t you go find them?  I need to write the story.”

“Story?  What story?  Lies, all lies.  Just like all of your crap.”

“I’ll write the story as I see it.  You need to get more pictures.  Let me know when you've found them.”

“The Pulitzer money?”

“We’ll split it.”

“Write whatever you want!”

The writer’s fingers moved across his lap top.  The words streamed directly to his news room and the editor drooled over every word.  The half truths, the made up interview, the outrages lies, spit into the newsroom with amazing speed.  The editor had the words put on the big screen and the entire staff was able to read the writer’s made up story.  It captivated them as if they were watching overtime in a Super bowl.

“Wow, he may get a Pulitzer for this one.”

“Have you seen the pictures?”

“That’s the ugliest donkey I have ever seen.”

“Is it true the elephant can climb trees?”

“Is the guy running for governor”?

“What party does he belong to?”

“What state is it?”

The editor rolled into the room.  He had sat on his butt for so long that has body looked like an over sized pear.  He had to slide sideways through the office doors.  He had cup of coffee in one hand and a day old doughnut in the other.  There were crumbs on his belly and two day old raspberry stains on the left sleeve of his shirt where he had wiped his mouth.

“OK, people this is a biggie.  We need to get on it….fast.”

“What about Squats?  It looks to me like he’s doing a good job.  I mean that it’s his story.  Well, you know…it’s his story.”  The speaker’s voice trailed off at the as he realized he was not being well received.

“To big for Squats!  We need full coverage.  I want a team for every one of those Terrorists.”

“Terrorists?  Squat’s story didn't mention terrorism.”

“That’s what I mean.  He’s not seeing the big story.  A talking elephant that climbs trees has to be a spy or a terrorist. Why else would he climb trees?  And that ugly donkey…being friends with an elephant…that’s subversive…an elephant and a donkey…friends?...that’s un-American…and a politician that says he doesn't lie…that has to be unconstitutional.”

The meek reporter knew he had just screwed up but saw has chance to redeem himself.  He didn't get all the way to staff writer by being totally stupid.  He had studied ‘sucking up’ in college and realized ‘sucking up’ was the best way to move up in the ranks of reporter.  Therefore, that’s what he did…”sucked up”!

“By all that is honorable in the press, you are absolutely, 100 percent on the nose.  Maybe snipers?...sure that has to be…I’ll bet that they’re going to kill someone…maybe even the president.”

“Oh, my God…the President?” someone else gasped.

“Suck up,” someone else muttered.

“He’s right!  Good thinking, Slumbutt.  We’ll need to really brain storm this one. I want two teams to cover every one of those lousy subversives. “

“Two teams?”

“Yes two teams.  Two writers, two camera people, two vans, two drivers...I want everything covered by two’s.  Call the camera pool.  Get more doughnuts and coffee.  We’ll meet in the staff room in thirty minutes.”

“Should we notify the authorities…the police…the FBI…the CIA…maybe even the president…?

“For God’s sake… no…this is too big…even for the president.  The police, the FBI, the CIA and even the president’s office have more leaks than a rice colander. If we call any of those people every other news organization, Russian intelligence, British Intelligence, Israeli Intelligence and  even those stinking desert rats will find out what’s happening and we will lose our advantage.”

“But…the President?”

“Will you back off about the president?  He’s a big boy and has plenty of people to take care of him.  We need to worry about us.  I’m sure there’s a Pulitzer in this one.”

“Wouldn't that belong to Squats?”

The editor’s black squinty eyes became large and round.  He glared at the inquisitor.

“Squats?...I’m taking him off of this one.  He’s not seasoned enough.  I’ll take this one myself.  Get me a ghost writer….the good looking one with the…well you know what I want.”

“She doesn't like you.”

“She likes money.  She likes the power I have.  She’ll look at this as an opportunity to stab me in the back.  She’ll come.  Get us first class tickets, a limo and a five-star hotel.”

He paused for a moment and then added:

“Better make it two rooms.  I don’t want to be too pushy…at first.”

“OK… everyone flying first class?”

“No one else is flying.  They’re all driving…straight through.  We can’t afford motels or plane tickets.  If they want to motel it when they get there, they are on their own.  Find everyone a cheap boarding house.”

“They don’t have boarding houses anymore.”

“OK, I’ll pop for a motel but, a cheap one like 'Motel Two'".

“You mean ‘Six’, don’t you?”

“I mean ‘Two’.”

The staff room was a mad house.  Writers and photographers were choosing up sides with who they wanted to be with but, the editor wasn't about to let the teams be anything other than what he wanted.  He wanted their help but he didn't want any team able to write something better than his ghost.  This was his chance to go down in history.

He assigned teams to the donkey, the elephant, the politician, the circus, the circus owner and the town that the ugly donkey and elephant came from.

“I want to know everything about these people, er...ah, animals…you know who I’m talking about…  I want to know their friends, their families, their politics..OK people, let’s do it…stat.”

“Stat?...Stat?...Why are you yelling stat?  We’re not doctors.”

“No, we’re not doctors, but were going to cut these traitors apart like we were.”

While the editor was planning his assault on his new found prey and a disadvantaged well endowed ghost writer, his trusted writing staff was calling their moles inside the FBI, CIA and the president’s Staff to return information favors.

The next morning, half of D.C. was investigating the ugly donkey, the elephant and an upstart politician.  The only people that did not know they were being investigated as subversives, traitors, and terrorists were the ugly donkey, the elephant and a naive retired undertaker.

/ / / / / 

to be continued...unless of course I am included with our little band of traitors and exiled to a Russian airport...or is that "escapes to a Russian airport...


  1. AnonymousJuly 25, 2013

    This is absolutely hilarious I love the drama and exaggeration! I always get completely submersed when reading one of your stories! Can't wait to see what happens next

    1. thank you...I am beginning to wonder if it is not becoming tedious. I, as the writer, am having a great time but I have to wonder if a reader will not find it sort of repetitive.

  2. AnonymousJuly 26, 2013

    Well I am enjoying =) I know what you mean though whenever I post stories I feel the same way.

  3. smiles...i love the subtle humor in your words...motel 2...ha...stat and cutting the traitors apart...ha...i think you keep it moving enough to engage the reader....