THE INAUGURATION

(January 20, 2009. Sniper #7 bursts into the room and finds it to be already full of snipers.)

SNIPER #1: Oh for the love of Ė How many is that now? Seven?

SNIPER #7: Wow. Are you guys all here to kill Barack Obama?

SNIPER #1: Yeah. Now quiet down. Heís taking the stage any moment now and I need a clear shot.

SNIPER #2: You mean I need a clear shot.

SNIPER #7: Man, I didnít expect it to be so crowded up here. Why do you all want to kill him?

SNIPER #1: White Supremacist.

SNIPER #2: White Supremacist.

SNIPER #3: I listen to too much right-wing talk radio and it makes me crazy. But mainly White Supremacist.

SNIPER #4: I think Obama is an Al Qaeda sleeper agent.

SNIPER #5: Iím an Al Qaeda sleeper agent.

SNIPER #6: Iím CIA. Whatís your story?

SNIPER #7: Iím an Alaska Separatist with ties to White Supremacists.

SNIPER #3: Oh yeah? Which White Supremacists do you have ties to?

SNIPER #7: Klan Local 626.

SNIPER #3: Hey, I know some guys from 626. Do you know Grand Wizard Dave?

SNIPER #7: Yeah, sure. I used to play poker at his house on the weekends. How do you know Dave?

SNIPER #3: Oh, we go way back. I think you might have seen me there a few times. I was the guy who had all the crazy Hawaiian shirts.

SNIPER #7: Oh wow, youíve lost a lot of weight. Say, where is Dave keeping himself nowadays?

SNIPER #3: (gesturing out the window) Across the street with two other guys.

(Across the street, three snipers stand up and wave.)

SNIPER #1: Well clearly we canít all assassinate Barack Obama.

SNIPER #7: Why canít we all just take take the shot at the same time? You know, like they did with Kennedy?

SNIPER #6: Actually, thatís just an urban legend. I was there, and Lee Harvey Oswald was the only shooter.

SNIPER #7: You donít say?

SNIPER #6: Yeah, itís a funny story, actually. I wasó

SNIPER #1: Come on guys, heís going to get inaugurated any minute here. We need to decide who takes the shot.

SNIPER #4: How about we snipe for it?

OBAMA: (Below.) Uh, I, Barack Hussein Obama, do uh solemnly swear... that I will faithfully execute... the uh Office of President... of the United States... and uh to the best of my ability...

SNIPER #1: Oh god, heís taking the oath. Come on, letís just do rock paper scissors.

(Murmurs of agreement)

SNIPER #1: Ready? On three. One, two, three!

(They all throw out hands)

SNIPER #3: ... Okay, so thatís two scissors, one rock, and four paper.

SNIPER #5: So who won?

SNIPER #4: Well, scissors beats paper, and paper beats rock, so uh....

SNIPER #2: Wait, thatís not right. Rock lynches paper.

SNIPER #7: Then what lynches rock?

OBAMA: (Below.) ...the, uh, the Constitution... of the United States. So help me god.

(Thunderous applause)

SNIPER #1: Aw, awww! Damn it. (He slumps down.) Well, now the whole thing is ruined.

SNIPER #7: Hey, donít say that.

SNIPER #1: Itís just Ė I had it all planned out, you know? Kill Obama, flee the scene, get killed by some vigilante a few days later. Now I donít know what Iím going to do.

SNIPER #2: You could always kill Joe Biden. Heís a Catholic.

SNIPER #1: Yeah... I guess. But itís just not... Itís not the same. You know what I mean?

SNIPER #6: Come on, youíll feel better.

(Sniper #1 sighs and grumpily sets up the shot.)


óBrendan Patrick Hennessy, 17 January 2009