Friday, August 05, 2005

A Day at the U.N.

Starring John Bolton:
3:17 p.m. -- The afternoon sun is getting hot; Bolton discovers the shade is stuck. He calls building services. He is informed that the shade has been stuck since 1966, that the U.N. Commission on Window Treatments was convened in 1967 to address the matter, and is scheduled to meet again in 2006, once India withdraws its objections to giving the rotating chairmanship to Yemen -- as one of the founding countries, it has the right to the chair, but when the nation split in two its claim to the chair was remanded to a subcommittee, which went on a fact-finding mission to a French drape manufacturer and never reported back aside from annual expense accounts from a beach house in the south. The Plenary Commission on International Shade Accords, a separate body, has recommended that any action on drapes or curtains be postponed until the U.N. building is renovated, or that a large movable curtain be erected across the street to block the sun, but this debate has been stalled over an amendment condemning Israel's treatment of Venetian blinds in the Gaza Strip. Of course, now that Israel has begun withdrawal from ...

3:24 -- Bolton hangs up, cuts the cord, and the shade comes down.

4:07 -- At the cafeteria, Bolton gets a doughnut and a cup of coffee; the cashier informs him she'll put it on the U.S. tab. Bolton insists on paying himself; she shrugs and asks for $428.26.