The Trump Treehouse of Tall Stories, Treason & Tyranny – Ep #4: "Not Action Figures"

(Official Secret Clubhouse of the He-Man Truth & Action Figure Haters Club)

Token Ben Carson: Sir?

Donnie: What?

Ben: You really shouldn’t stand on the top step.

Donnie: What?

Ben: The step ladder. You really shouldn’t stand on the top step. There’s even a warning on th…

Donnie: Warning? What the hell does Trump care about warnings? (whispering to himself with a smirk “warnings, hah!”) That’s why we deregulate. Wait, who the hell are you?

Ben: Ben sir. Ben Carson.

Donnie: You’re black right?

Ben: Yes.

Donnie: OOOOhhhh, THAT Ben. Right, yes I remember. I like that. Part of my cabinet right?

Ben: Yes sir

Donnie: And black?

Ben: Yes…again sir.

Donnie: Man I’m good. I should point that out in a tweet. (self noting “black guy in my cabinet…man I’m good”)

Ben: You probably already have.

Donnie: Cabinet. That’s funny.

Ben: What sir?

Donnie: Cabinet. It’s just funny. “you’re in my cabinet” It’s like I have you guys above the counter in my kitchen next to the dinner plates and coffee mugs or something. “Hey Melania, we’re having a thing, an important thing, yea, wear something skimpy, break out the dinner plates from the ‘cabinet’ but don’t grab Ben or Munchkin by mistake! Ha Ha Ha.

Ben: It’s Mnuchin sir.

Donnie: What? What the hell are you talking about?

Ben: His name is Mnuchin, not Munchkin. Plus, he’s tall.

Donnie: I was making a funny Ben!

Ben: Oh, yes, you were, my sides hurt. Lot’s of laughter here sir. It’s just that his name isn’t Munch…

Donnie: …yes I get it Ben. (aside “fucking kill-joy…plus that guy’s name is just stupid”…trailing off… “cabinet…don’t grab by mistake…that’s a “my”person not a tea cup…ha ha ha”)

Ben: If you don’t mind my pointing out sir…you’re still on the top step…could be dangerous.

Donnie: You still here?

Ben: Yes sir.

Donnie: Danger’s nothing to me Ben.

Ben: Oh, I know that…you don’t, you wouldn’t flinch in the face of it sir. Even without a gun. It’s just that…

Donnie: …you got that right!…I don’t flinch…I’d just run right in…it’s just that what Ben?

Ben: Well, I just don’t want you to fall…you, know…twist an ankle or get a spur or something like that.

Donnie: Hey! Trumps don’t fall Ben!!! We don’t twist ankles BEN!! Or spur!! We laugh in the face of spur. And if we do fall, or spur, that’s what we intended, so THEY can suck it!

Ben: They?

Donnie: Yeh, they.

Ben: Who’s they?

Donnie: They Ben!! They. Them. Those. THEY! All of them! All of them that aint us.

Ben: Ummm…(worry) Us?

Donnie: Don’t worry Ben. I’ll save you. You’re a good “they, them. those.” My laundry?

Ben: All done.

Donnie: Great. Still black?

Ben: Still am, five minutes later.

Donnie: Good! I’ll hold you up as an example.

Ben: Thank you sir.

Donnie: You’re welcome.

Ben: So what are the action figures for?

Donnie: (hemming) uhhh…action figures?

Ben: Yeh, you have them them all lined up…right here in front of your step ladder on…are those pews?

Donnie: Yes..No…they’re not action figures and those are just pallets. Pallets. It’s a treehouse Ben. You make do with what you have. Old pallets, old shoeboxes of rocks, old politcal planks for the ladder up the tree, It’s just part of the fun.

Ben: Oh, I see it now. pallets, not pews. But they’re pallets loaded with cash. Shrink wrapped.

Donnie: Just dues.

Ben: Dues?

Donnie: Just leave it at that Ben. Dues. Need a couple of bucks for the office?

Ben: No, I’m good sir.

Donnie: You sure? You haven’t been eying anything up? You and your wife? Does she need a job?

Ben: No, our ‘cabinets’ are full sir.

Donnie: Oh, now you made a funny.

Ben: I did. Well, OK then. Thank you sir.

Donnie: Do they look like they’re sitting up?

Ben: ?

Donnie: My…ummm…chess pieces

Ben: Chess pieces?

Donnie: The action fig…chess pieces. Yeh, chess pieces…in a game of chess.

Ben: Not action figures?

Donnie: Definitely not action figures. Did you know I played chess?

Ben: No I didn’t. I’m impressed.

Donnie: Yes, love chess, I’m really good at it too. Genius’s are good at chess. Not as challenging as checkers but I know the game. I dabble.

Ben: You are worldy that way.

Donnie: Yeh, they all want me to play chess. But I’m so good at it that I offer checkers instead. All of them take me up on it too. And I win. I always win Ben.

Ben: Do you get to King?

Donnie: Hop Hop stack stack Nuff said.

Ben: Another funny?

Donnie: (sigh)

Ben: They do look like they’re sitting up though.

Donnie: (suddenly alert) They do?

Ben: Yes, but, I don’t recognize this one.

Donnie: Skeletor?

Ben: No, this one.

Donnie: Stretch Armstrong?

Ben: No.

Donnie: Purple Pony?

Ben: No.

Donnie: Michael J Fox’s Teen Wolf?

Ben: Really?

Donnie: Special collection. Very rare. One of a kind.

Ben: Wow, must be…No, none of those…this little fat one.

Donnie: Oh, the one with the big flashy Elton John glasses?

Ben: Yeh, weird haircut too.

Donnie: He’s friends with Skeletor. They despot stuff together. Tough guys.

Ben: You really SHOULD hold on to something.

Donnie: What?

Ben: Hold on to something. If you’re going to stand on the top step, you really should hold on to something.

Donnie: Ben (getting tired of the conversation) I can’t hold on to “something” with my arms outstretched like this above my adoring actio…chess pieces.

Ben: I know that sir, but this isn’t a carnival ride.

Donnie: It is if yell “Whoooooooooooo!”

Ben: SIR!!!

(crashing sounds and tumbling onto the floor of the treehouse as the step ladder gives way)

Donnie: Shit!!! (crash…moan)

Ben: (rushing over) Oh my god sir, are you alright?!

Donnie: (moan moan moan)

Ben: Sir!!!

Donnie: (moan) I think I may have broken something. How’s my hair?

Ben: Ummmm…it’s fine

Donnie: You sure? some follicles feel broken, or at least frayed.

Ben: No, you’re fine…and there’s shampoo for that.

Donnie: Were they still sitting up?

Ben: What?…who sir?

Donnie: My action fig…my chess pieces?

Ben: Yeh…sure.

Donnie: When I went “Whoooooooooooo!”

Ben: Yes, they’re still sitting up.

Donnie: (whew) good, at least there is that.

Ben: ?

Donnie: Sit up Ben.

Ben: ?? Oh right. Sitting up sir.

Donnie: Good

2018 Tony Red Carpet – An Overload of Fancy

I haven’t worked a gig for Spectrum for a quite a while now (things change) but when I got the call I was all in. Not just for the obvious paycheck, but because it was the Tony’s. Why not take in the experience of celebrity that some find so fascinating? See what it is that makes people line up for just a glimpse? The young girl in a pretty orange dress with cool classy combat boots who was there for hours holding her spot? The tall casper looking guy who could use some sun in the too big Sixers baseball cap with the too big shorts and the too big untied sneaks? I have no idea why he was there other than maybe he thought all the commotion was over a car wreck. The touristy passersby who held their cells above their heads while, of course, passing by, recording what they would wait till later to look at on the bus, hoping it would be something they could show the folks back home? Cheers to them.

It started with a block long wall of styrofoam and chicken wire that eventually turned into an overload of beautifully flowered fancy. A huge group effort meticulously taking thousands upon thousands of single cut roses and green leaves and placing them into this wall of styrofoam and chicken wire. This flowered wall still resonates with me both in it’s impressive beauty but also in it’s over the top indulgence. And, of course understand, there’s only so much a “non” fancy guy like me can take, from tops to toes, dresses to dressings, fanciful to fanci-what the fuck, but it was still a night to remember. Could I just as easily forget it on the way home on the train with a good (as always) Neil Gaiman book? Sure, shit evens out that way. But there were eyelashes that could cut glass, makeup that could bring a smoky eye to tear with layers of regret, hugs and kisses that almost seemed real until you remembered where you were.

There were stars and there were grunts, people of place and people who just had a place. A place to make a living. I was one of the latter but I still found myself taking pictures, justifying that my sis, and maybe my nephews would think they were cool. But, to tell you the truth, I revelled in this, however much my cynicism might have made me smirk and attempt to be above the fancy fray, and however much that was possibly the longest freaking two hours ever (the actual day from wake to home was 19 hours. The event? Those really long two) I let myself snap a few shots.

Hell, someone even, at the end, brought a mountain goat in it’s own mountain goat tux eating grapes which, kind of, in a weird appropriate way, put a cap on it. Who’s to argue with that?

The Trump Treehouse of Tall Stories, Treason & Tyranny – Ep #3: "While The Cat’s Away"

(Official Secret Clubhouse of the He-Man Truth & Cuddly Cat Haters Club)

Scott Pruitt: Jesus, this place is awful

Ben Carson: Why, what’s wrong with it?

Scott: It’s dusty, there’s leaves and dirt all over the floor, doesn’t anyone wipe their feet?…it’s just so….treehousey…so common. Shit, I need a wipe. And is this lead paint?

Ben: I don’t know, you’re the guy who should know that right?

Scott: Watch your tone Ben, and yes, I do know, but it depends on the company and who I’m paying to have it (air quotes) “tested” and then, of course it depends on the relationship with the company that makes the paint etc…etc…it’s a lot of what I do.

Ben: Did you just air quote?

Scott: Maybe. I just don’t recognize this particular paint’s…mmm…imprint you might say. It doesn’t seem to have enough green.

Ben: Should we have it tested?

Scott: (air quotes) “tested” Ben. It’s always “tested”

Ben: ummmm…?…ok…but if it is lead paint, isn’t that dangerous?

Scott: You’re funny Ben. It’s complicated. You understand complicted right?

Ben: I am a neurosurgeon.

Scott: Right…of course you are…he doesn’t eat the paint chips does he?

Ben: I don’t know, he does snack a lot.

Scott: Could explain some things. Anyway I’ll look into it. Just gotta make a couple of calls, but not here.

Ben: Why not?

Scott: Pretty obvious isn’t it Ben? There’s no booth.

Ben: ?

Scott: Never mind. I have a spot for calls back at my office. Plus we really should tidy up before he comes back.

Ben: Yeh when is that?

Scott: You never know. Depends on how quickly everyone abroad is reminded of how much they hate him.

Ben: So he could have been back before he left?

Scott: Very funny again Ben. You’re a riot. No, we really should do something for him. Maybe buy him some new furniture here, spiff the place up.

Ben: How about a dining set. My wife knows a great place.

Scott: Great idea! Would it be bulletproof?

Ben: Huh?

Scott: This dining set place place your wife knows, do they carry any that are bulletproof?

Ben: Is that a thing?

Scott: It is when you’re me. Lot’s of crazies out there.

Ben: That wanna shoot up your dining room set?

Scott: You never know Ben. Ever vigilant I say, with a good solid piece of bulletproof furniture to cower behind. Important people can never be to careful you know.

Ben: Right, of course. Well I’ll ask my wife to check. But it never really feels like he’s gone anyway though, even when he is.

Scott : Yes he does have that kind of presence doesn’t he?

Ben: What? No, that’s not what I meant.

Scott: Then what?

Ben: It’s that portrait of Andrew Jackson over his step ladder.

Scott: His step stool?

Ben: Yeh, every now and then he just stands on it, top step, I don’t know why.

Scott: Well….alright, whatever. Probably to check out those shoeboxes on the bookshelf or change a lightbulb or something right?

Ben: No. He just stands on it, the top step, and stares out in the distance. Raises his arms.

Scott: Ok then…so what about this portrait?

Ben: I don’t know, it’s weird. Seems like the eyes follow you everywhere and it creeps me the hell out….all the way down to my ancestor’s toes…though I don’t know why.

Scott: You’re black Ben

Ben: Oh, right. Makes more sense now.

(A cough sound from behind the portrait and the sound of falling stuff / cursing)

Ben: Hey, did you hear that?

Scott: Hear what?

Ben: It sounded like that Jackson painting just coughed and knocked over paint cans or something.

Scott: Sure it did Ben. I didn’t hear anything.

Ben: It did, I swear!

Scott: Ok, look, your big neurosurgeon, dumbest smart guy ever brain is just overly tired Ben, maxed out, probably making you hear things…you’ve been working really hard.

Ben: You’re right, I have.

Scott: Yes you have. (assuringly) It’s not easy trying to fuck poor people by raising their rents in order to make them pick themselves up by their bootstraps.

Ben: No, it’s not.

Scott: Especially when there’s absolutely no logic to it.

Ben: I know, right?

Scott: Exactly. Now take a breath and let’s get back to this cluttered mess here. I mean, what the hell are all these shoeboxes on the bookshelves anyway?

Ben: Don’t touch those.

Scott: Why?

Ben: I don’t know. He just said NOT to touch those.

Scott: You mean you haven’t looked?

Ben: No. That would be bad.

Scott: You’re not curious?

Ben: No, plus, doesn’t curiousity kill stuff? I’ve heard that it does. Like cats?

Scott: You like cats do you Ben?

Ben: Oh, verrrry much. They’re soft.

Scott: Yes they are Ben, very soft, and cuddly too right?

Ben: Yes, I like cuddly.

Scott: I’m sure you do Ben, but you’re right. Curiousity does kill stuff…a LOT of stuff …that’s why we leave curiousity to the “experts”, like me and lobbyists.

Ben: Did you just air quote that too?

Scott: No. (looking in the shoeboxes)…it’s just rocks Ben, lots of rocks in lots of shoeboxes on bookshelves instead of books Ben.

Ben: Any of them small rocks? Small enough to be gravel?

Scott: What? Gravel?

Ben: Yeh gravel, at our last meeting we….

Scott: Yes, well I wasn’t at the last meeting Ben (sigh). Where’s Jeff by the way? A “friend” of mine who’s in some “difficulty” needs to “talk” to him.

Ben: You didn’t air quote AGAIN just there, a LOT, did you?

Scott: Nope.

Ben: He’s probably out on the balcony.

Scott: This treehouse has a balcony?

Ben: Yeh, just over there. Right outside one of the “Alice” doors.

Scott: “Alice” doors?

Ben: Special small doors for Jeff from the boss for some reason. I don’t know. But the balcony overlooks a children’s summer camp. He likes to go out there every now and then.

Scott: A kids’s camp? Why?

Ben: I don’t know, he says it’s to think, to clear his head. Watching the kids helps I guess. Big hearted guy. He also said something about channeling Ralph Feinnes. Some sort of movie reference. I’m not a big movie guy.

Scott: No?

Ben: Though I did like “Concussion”.

Scott: Right up your alley huh?

Ben: Yeh. It was about brains. And Will Smith is black.

Scott: I’ve noticed that. In all of his movies. He’s black just like you right?

Ben: Ummm….yeh…exactly. Black. Do you think he voted for the boss?

Scott: Probably not Ben, he’s one of those Hollywood elites.

Ben: Fucking elites….sorry, excuse my language sir.

Scott: It’s alright Ben. You’re allowed that. Especially when it comes to those fucking elites.

*Knock Knock

Scott: Were we expecting someone?

Ben: Wait! The coughing from behind the Andrew Jackson painting? Do you think someon…

Scott: NO I DON’T. I’ll get it. (whispering to himself as he walks to the door ‘wish I had something bulletproof to hide behind…just in case’) (wary) Who’s there?

Ryan Zinke: Ryan.

Scott: Zinke, is that you?

Zinke: Damn shootin’ straight!

Scott: Hold on. Hey Ben? What’s today’s password?

Ben: Well…I don’t know. The boss isn’t here so we don….

Scott: You mean he didn’t leave a password?

Ben: No.

Scott: Hold on Ryan….If. That. Is. You.

Zinke: If. That. Is. Me? What the hell are you talking about?

Scott: What’s the password?

Zinke: Password? I just heard you ask Ben if there was one.

Scott: No you didn’t.

Zinke: Yes I did.

Scott: No YOU didn’t

Zinke: YES I DID. It’s a treehouse Scott. The walls are pretty fucking thin.

Scott: Well if there WAS a password what would it be?

Zinke: Are you fucking serious?! You know I just got an NRA tattoo on my ass and I’m armed right? To the nines and 47’s and you’ve got no bulletproof shit to hide behind Pruitt! Plus we’ve got a situation here!

Scott: Situation, Shmittuation. (aside) Ben, what would the password be?

Ben: I don’t know…ummm….treacle?

Scott: Treacle?!

Ben: What? I like sweet stuff.

Scott: You’re not English Ben!

Ben: I am black though.

Scott: Yes, and the boss appreciates that….c’mon!

Ben: How about “Cuddly”? We were talking cuddly earlier.

Scott: *exasperated

Zinke: You know I can STILL hear you right?!

Ben: I got it! (whispers in Pruitt’s ear) The password is “Extinct”

Scott: Ooooh, that’s a good one…Ok, Zinke…If. That. Is. Really. You…what’s the password?

Zinke: Extinct.

Scott: Damn this guy is good.

Zinke: (bursts through the door) You are both idiots. And where’s the door I ordered for here for me to make my bursting through appear more impressive?! And what the fuck is going on? I told you, we have a situation.

Scott: And?  The boss is gone, we passworded you, and quite effectively I might add, you came in. Done. What “situation” tops that?

Zinke: Sessions is trying to pick off kids in that camp next door…

Scott: ….woahhh!…

Zinke: …and his aim is ALL off…

Scott: …crap…

Zinke: …and since when does he smoke while shooting?…

Scott: …I don…

Zinke: …we gotta get this guy to the range…

Scott: …uhhhh…

Zinke: ….fucking amateurs…

Ben: …have you seen my cat?…

Scott: …you have a cat here?…

Zinke: …was he furry?…

Ben: …well, yes…

Zinke: …cuddly?…

Scott: …seriously, you have a cat here? I thought that was metaphorical…

Ben: …oh yes, very much so…very furry AND cuddly…

Zinke: I shot it.

Ben: …oh…

Zinke: …it’s been extincted…

Ben: …oh…(single tear falls)

The Trump Treehouse of Tall Stories, Treason & Tyranny – Ep #2: "Bang the Gravel"

(The Official Secret Clubhouse of the He-Man Truth & Gavel Haters Club)

Donnie: Alright, this meeting of the He-Man Truth Haters Club will now be ordered. Jeff, bang your gravel.

Jeff: It’s gavel.

Donnie: What?

Jeff: It’s gavel, not gravel.

Donnie: That’s what I said.

Jeff: No, you said gravel, small stones, what you meant was gavel. Kinda like a little mallet.

Donnie: What I meant? Are you trying to tell me what I meant, like I was wrong? Are you correcting me Jeff?

Jeff: No sir, not at all. Just pointing out that to bring the meeting to order you want a gavel.

Donnie: Really…..JEFF? Maybe Trump’s changing this PC gavel crap Jeff  ’cause he’s Trump. Maybe Trump meant exactly what he said…….JEFF. Maybe Trump meant to order this meeting with gravel and not some big headed tiny little elf stick. Ben!

Token Carson: Yes sir?

Donnie: Climb down the tree and get me some GRAVEL. But not small stones, I want big gravel.
Gotta be big Trump gravel.

Ben: Ummm…ok, but then technically speaking it’s not really gravel anymo…

Donnie: …(glaring) don’t use your big brain, just go get me some BIG gravel Ben. And paint it gold before you get back.

Ben: Yes sir.

Jeff: Should we wait for him?

Donnie: For who?

Jeff: Ben, sir.

Donnie: Ben who?

Jeff: Carson. Ben Carson. You just sent him down the tree to get you some gravel? So we can start the meeting?

Donnie: Oh Ben, right. What’s he do again?

Jeff: He’s in charge of HUD.

Donnie: Really? Housing and urban something?

Jeff: Yes.

Donnie: Is urban really a part of it? I don’t like urban.

Jeff: I know sir, but yes.

Donnie: Well ok, it is what it is. Does he know what he’s doing?

Jeff: Housing? No clue…but he has a really nicely afforded new office.

Donnie: As nice as Pruitt’s?

Jeff: No…none of us seem to rate that sir.

Donnie: Yeh I know…wait…I’m President. I don’t rate that…and in spades? (aside whisper “I gotta get me some of that bulletproof shit”)

Jeff: Funny turn of phrase sir.

Donnie: What?

Jeff: Spades…never mind. He may not have not a clue sir, but he’s a neurosurgeon.

Donnie: Really? Neurosurgegeon? They’re smart right?

Jeff: Well yes…they do surgery on brains. Lots of schooling.

Donnie: Lots of schooling? Fucking elites. Are any of his brains bigger than mine?

Jeff: Well I don’t know abo….


Jeff: Ummm, no of course not. Yours is the biggest.

Donnie: Damn right it is. All that elitist schooling couldn’t help with a brain the size of mine. Maybe if there were a trade school for brains though, you know, an apprenticeship where they learn hands on, nuts to bolts, bolts to brains with guys that are like, I don’t know, brain mechanics.

Jeff: Well in some regards that’s kind of what medical shcooling is. Lots of study and residencies with experienced doctors in working hospitals.

Donnie: But it’s not a TRADE school is it Jeff? A school where they learn a trade is it…..JEFF? An everyday blue collar, brain mechanic school where they learn from blue collar guys who voted for me because they felt their trade was being disenfranchised by the elites at colleges who were stealing their jobs and livelihoods is it JEFF!!??

Jeff: No…you’re absolutely right sir. Those brain mechanic Trade schools have been overlooked for far too long. And you’re their voice sir.

Donnie: I’m their voice. Exactly! I’m their voice. I like that. Where’s Betsy?

Dippy DeVoss: Right here sir.

Donnie: You been here the whole time?

Dippy: Of course sir. Right in the corner where you put me earlier. You invited me to the meeting.

Donnie: I did? You have scrapes on your knee.

Dippy: The tree is a bit of a climb sir.

Donnie: Shit, thought it might have been something else to get me in trouble. I miss the 80’s. Well, it’s good to work for it. How come you haven’t added anything?

Dippy: Added anything to what sir?

Donnie: Li’l Jeff (Jeff sigh) and I talking about schooling and trades and how brain mechanics have been overlooked for too long.

Dippy: Schooling?

Donnie: Yes, schooling. That’s what you do right? Didn’t I put you in charge of schools?

Dippy: Oh yes, right, schooling. Absolutely. You’re right…schooling…that’s what I’m in charge of…I am. Must have zoned out a bit on the word shcooling. Just doing the Lord’s work sir.

Donnie: That you are. Speaking of that, have we legislated the Bible as mandatory history and science text yet?

Dippy: Working on it sir. That’s my big project.

Donnie: Taxpayer funded?

Dippy: Of course.

Donnie: Good, go back to your corner.

Dippy: Thank you sir. It’s a good corner. God’s in it.

Donnie: Of course he is…he likes me right?

Dippy: Who sir?

Donnie: This God guy. He likes me right?

Dippy: Oh, I’m sure he does.

Donnie: What? You don’t know?

Dippy: Well, I don’t REALLY talk to him directly but I’m sure he does.

Donnie: I’ve had breakfast with him you know.

Dippy: Yes, I know.

Donnie: Fine fucking breakfast. And not just bagels and coffee. A REAL breakfast. With important God people.

Dippy: I know sir. Always impressive.

Donnie: You still here?

Dippy: Yes….No. Not here anymore. Corner.

Donnie: Good.

*Knock Knock

Donnie: Who’s there?

Ben: Ben.

Donnie: Ben who?

Ben: It’s Ben too long?

Donnie: (cue sitcom canned laughter and a cheesy Trump thumbs up orange grin close up)…(pause)…Why are you carrying a box of rocks?

Ben: Irony sir?

Donnie: ???????….(more canned laughter) … Ok, let’s add and urn and take this meeting up next week. See you then.

Jeff: Next wednesday?

Donnie: No, let’s make it next Tuesday. I’ve still got a bone to pick with Samantha Bee.