The Donald, The Dropped Phone & Everything

About three months ago, ECR received a belligerent phone call.  The voice on the other end immediately cut loose on a strange tale involving: Secret rooms in the Oval Office, Presidential Ghosts, and intricate systems processes of human biology. Our first take...that it was crank-caller. Due to the recent revelations in the release of "Fire and Fury" By Michael Wolff, ECR thinks maybe there'd been some truth to the entire ordeal. 

Art by Duane Crockett

The voice on the phone launched itself into this diatribe: 

"When I saw the news report—my stomach felt hot. I asked the dum-dums standing around if they wouldn’t mind waiting outside the office. I made it seem like I wanted to be alone—but the truth’s a lot messier. My private bathroom’s built into the wall of this old place. There’s not enough soundproofing. I have the best BM’s, trust me, they’re loud, big and stinking. But it’s nobody’s damn business how I handle it. Ever since I got this job—the John’s become sacred to me. It’s where I do my best thinking. A little stinking-thinking. Either way, it’s the only place not bugged. I can't even eat McDonald's in the Kennedy without some Agent coming in, afraid I was choking. I had to tell those no-name having sons of bitches that my bedroom was to be locked and I was the only one who had access. I was told that my safety was number one priority. 'Of course, it is’ I told that bastard. ‘I’m me and you’re just you!’ Those idiots looked confused like they’d never been put in their place before. I swear to God, sometimes this feels like a prison. Sad!

I’m taking care of business when my phone buzzes. I love Twitter. It's the best. love retweets and notifications—but these days? It seems another protest has erupted over something someone thinks I’ve said. I thought that’s just how they showed love and adoration for me. It wasn’t until I saw the news that knew better. These snowflakes like their safe zones, internet, and avocado toast. I blame their parents. Those damn hippies helped ruin this country. So now their children feel it’s okay to kneel during the national anthem and their bosses do nothing about it. I mean damn, I thought they were my friends, but no—they send their hired man out to deliver a message. A message meant only for me—and since it’s only for me—they had to do it publicly. 

That red-headed mouthpiece says, “The President should be uniting our country not dividing it.”

That floored me! I remember when that goon came around my New York office dancing for nickels. Now here he is grandstanding? Don’t they know I’ve got real problems here? Russia, China and Korea won’t come visit Mar-a-Lago anymore. There’s some suave gigolo up in Canada stealing my thunder. Mexico refuses to admit publicly it will pay for the wall. Don’t they remember that I owned a football team long ago? I know what’s going on here. Kraft and Kahn and Jerry are trying to tarnish my brand. Not gonna happen.

Just then a brilliant retort hits me! I don’t know where these good ideas come from—I mean I’ve got the best genes—I’m a genius. So I stand to wipe and that's when the Goddamn phone slips out of my hand. Straight into the bowl."

This was the first of several long pauses. I heard the distorted sounds of something being unwrapped and eaten. At one point, I literally heard "nom-nom-nom" then followed by an outburst of satiated air. "AAAAAAAAaaaaaHHHHHhhhh!" The voice continued:

"I'm staring down into...into this mess. The screen's chiming back at me. I'm thinking who the hell I can get to pull my phone out. Maybe Steve...maybe the kid. He's got a lot to learn. A good test to see how well he can keep his mouth shut. Knowing him he’ll probably blurt it out in front of the press. Maybe I could call Katie, not like she’s doing anything…then I remember where the phone’s at…That’s when I hear the voice."

The second pause comes after a knock at the door. The voice screams something inaudible.

Anyways, where was I? Oh yeah, that voice! “Whaddaya think you’re doing?”Sounded like a cowboy or something. I’m thinking how did someone get in here. I’m pulling up pants like a madman then stop. I catch a reflection in the mirror. The man’s a giant, big nose, leathery face and balding. Oh and this guy’s glowing green. Like one of those pirates from that Carribean movies. You know the one with that sexy brit chick. I don’t know her name but she’s a ten in the evening when she’s got four on the floor. 

Imagine my surprise when I turn around and ain’t no one behind me. Not that the room’s big enough to hold more than the john, me and a sink.
The hairs on my neck get stiff when the thing says, “Are you dumber than a dishwater blonde? Turn and face me like a man! You gallon of half-eaten Orange Sherbert!”

No One…I mean no one, talks to me like that! So I start to tell him off and everything…“I don’t know who the hell you think you are! But you can’t be in here!”

That’s when this thing steps forward. Through the mirror, the sink…the whole room goes dark, I don’t see nothing but the glow of this green thing…and it shouts me down, “You shut your dim-witted hole! You half-pint buffoon!” 

The Giant’s face came right up to mine, “I’m the Ghost of LBJ! That’s who I am?”

“Never heard of ya,” I said and pulled up my pants. Then I flushed…and then I screamed. “Look what you made me do!” I was so flustered! I looked over the swirling bowl and watched the glow of my screen, still chiming with twitter notifications disappear into the dark. 

I wheel around just in time to see this LBJ thing go through the secret door. I mean he didn’t open it or anything, just went straight through. I washed my hands and followed it out. You can never be too clean. I try to never touch a door handle if I can help it. That’s for garbage people, not me. So elbow the secret door open and…

There’s a loud raspy wheezing cough—followed by a colossal throat clearing. Then a muffled voice calls for someone. There’s a rustling on the line then a higher pitched voice asks, “Yes sir?” The muffled voice says something to the tune of ‘Look at this! Does this look like Joe Scarborough?’ I don’t hear the lady’s response before our conversation is resumed.
So I go back into the office, but it doesn’t look like the office no more. First of all, everything’s greyer than a fifth avenue parking garage. Second of all, there’s dust everywhere floating around like Superstorm Sandy. Thirdly, it’s night outside. I’m thinking how the hell long had I been in the john and why hadn’t anybody come looking for me. That’s when I see LBJ, at the wet bar. 

“Hey slime ball,” I say, “what the hell do you think you’re doing barging in on me while I’m having a private moment in my private bath—“
The bastard cuts me off, “Private? The hell you talkin’ about son? When I was President I take half the meeting sitting in there. One of the perks of being President. Making everyone smell and curate your business. Wondering how much steak you’ve eaten. Lord knows the job requires you to take enough their shit…bout time they took some of yours.”

I get it. I’m being pranked by the Russians, right? So I say something to that effect and LBJ throws a bottle of Old Crow at me! “Listen here, son! I didn’t travel all the way from hell to not get my point across…there were a lot of us clamoring to get up here and chew on your ear…God help you if Lincoln get’s free! That ole fightin’ Illini’s got some reach on him. Now I was sent because everyone felt that I could be the most diplomatic in persuading you to listen to reason. You're whole operations in a mess of it.”

On and on and on and on, he kept going…I kept saying ‘Great!’ hoping he’d shut up but he wouldn’t. At least with all the strange dust floating around, there was some freaky stuff to look at…Then outside the office door bursts open in comes a stampeding ghost of Abraham Lincoln. LBJ has to restrain the guy cause he comes in swinging! “Let me at him! Let me at him! I’ll remove Habeas Corpus all over his ass! Lemme go!”

Next thing I know Lincoln swings and cold clocks LBJ and that guy drops like Chinatown prices. I run back into the bathroom to hide. Lincoln’s snarling and snapping at me through the door. I’m looking around for anything that I can use to barricade myself in…the door has one of those sliding locks, so I use that but I gotta find something better. Where the hell's those no-name secret services when you need 'em!

The toilet bowl is glowing again and I look…my phone’s still in there. So I take a deep breath and reach in…I’m thinking I gotta call Hope Hicks for help. Let me tell ya, it took everything I had to ask Siri to make the call…I didn’t wanna put it so close to my mouth…then that’s when Lincoln started swinging the axe—

The line went dead. At first, I thought it was another of those pauses.  But my phone went to sleep so I put it back on the nightstand beside my bed. I couldn’t sleep so I got up and jotted down the exchange in my notes. I was going to go to work the next day and find out who was yanking my chain. But…no one…Upon more reflection, the phone call could’ve been from President Trump. I mean it’s about as good of an excuse as any…for the next several days I kept getting reminded of the immortal words of George W. Bush at Trump’s Inauguration, “That’s some weird shit.”

This is a work of satire.
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