Vol. 4, Issue 1, March 14, 2006
Dr. Watson Cures All.
The Specious Report

The Adventures of an Accidental Ambassador

Ezekiel F. Watley, Esq.

America is many things, most of them Large and Colorful and smelling faintly of Pommes Frites. Most of these, such as the Purple Mountains' Majesty and amber waves of Grain, are not all that Portable, of course. Fortunately, these are but the tip of the Iceberg, window-dressing to the real indefinable Magnificence that is the American Spirit.

It was this ineffable Spirit which I was recently charged with carrying, most Unexpectedly, to a far-distant corner of the Globe. It is not Often one is offered an Ambassadorship, particularly during the Holiday Season. But as I prepared for the traditional Watley Nog Safari (an essential Prelude to that mystifying but Healthful holiday drink - one can hardly brew Egg-nog without Nogs) I received a Most Urgent Telegram summoning me to the Aid of our Country. And it was thus that while America slept beneath a win'try blanket of Snow and shared Yule-tide sentiments with one another, I was searching for the Water-Closet in a turn-of-the Century embassy somewhere near the Equator.

The job of Ambassador is a delicate one, as one is essentially a living Tele-phone system, conveying the collective Voice of one's own Country abroad and, just as importantly, conveying the Concerns of that far-distant Land to my own mighty Nation, somewhat less concerned with the affairs of minor players on the World Stage. Naturally, the successful Comportment of such a job requires prodigious quantities of Scotch, a contingency for which I was (most fortunately!) well prepared.

It was over such Libations that I handled my first Ambassadorial Crisis, in the very earliest hours of the New Year, as I learned to my Astonishment and Joy that there were a Great Many people who desired Permission to come to our great land. I magnanimously cast aside these petty "Visa Restrictions" and whatnot: Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free! Alas, we ran out of Ink for the Visa-stamp before Dawn, and Washington refused to send us any More.

In my Next act, following a very successful evening (during which my Anecdote about the French General and the contraband absinthe went over Extremely well), I learned from my Hosts of a little disagreement over the stationing of some American troops and certain Military exercises. My good readers, Americans are nothing if not Courteous guests, and I lost No Time in getting those exercises Stopped. All things in Moderation, lads! Their commanding officer was Most accommodating after I hosted him and his Troops at the Embassy for a friendly evening of Darts, Pool, and some good 12-year old Speyside single-malt. However, Washington was much less understanding: but one must make Allowances for the military Bureaucracy in Washington.

The final straw for my Superiors, apparently, was an inexplicable aversion to my use of the Embassy Cheque-book for charitable causes. I found the thing covered in a layer of Dust locked in a Pigeon-hole in an unused Salon on the second Floor, and spent a marvelous Twenty-Four hours single-handedly Doubling the funds available for needed services such as Education and Medical care in that time-worn city. Noblesse oblige, I thought, and in any event the amount I disbursed was hardly equal to our Catering bills for the Holidays. I made sure to disburse a healthy measure of Advice with each Cheque, of course (free of Charge).

My tenure in this exalted and admittedly undeserved Post was rather Brief, lasting no more than a few Months; my departure from that distant Land was as abrupt and perplexing as my Arrival. As I look about my dusty Office here at the Review (Ephram clearly has gone on Holiday for a few months) I realize that I have let my journalistic duties Slip; but I cannot help but feel that I have done well by my Other unexpected duties. In any event, there is Work to be done, which I shall undertake as Soon as I properly take care of these Souvenirs from my Ambassadorial tenure; a lovely Sash, a new Silk Hat (which must take station as my new Second-best silk hat), and - what ho, the Embassy Cheque-book. Now how did that get in there?

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