Conversations Between Famous People As Imagined By Someone With An American Public School Education Who Didn’t Pay Too Much Attention In School But Who Did Just Enough To Pass The Exams.
BY MATT PASSET
[Originally published May 23, 2007.]
Richard Nixon and Winston Churchill
NIXON: Hello, I see you’re smoking a cigar and wearing a large hat.
CHURCHILL: So I am, young chap. Could I interest you in a cigar?
NIXON: Sure, I think I smoke cigars … maybe … I don’t know.
(CHURCHILL hands a cigar to NIXON, who bites off the tip and lights it.)
NIXON: We were probably alive at the same time.
CHURCHILL: Indeed, my boy, indeed. I had something to do with World War II and I think maybe you fought in it.
NIXON: I’m not sure if I did.
CHURCHILL: There’s not that much more about me that everyone knows.
NIXON: I once held up my hands and formed two peace signs. I was either about to get onto a plane or get off of one.
CHURCHILL: I have seen the photo, because I think there were cameras when I was alive.
NIXON: And what about Watergate? I did that.
CHURCHILL: Margaret Thatcher is someone else from England. She was leader after me.
NIXON: People can buy masks of my face.
J.D. Salinger and Christopher Columbus
COLUMBUS: I discovered America.
SALINGER: You’re a phony, everything’s phony.
COLUMBUS: I sailed on three ships called the Niña, the Pinta, and the Santa Maria. I don’t think I had anything to do with the Mayflower. That was before me.
SALINGER: Everything is phony.
COLUMBUS: It was 1492 when I found America. That year is definitely correct.
SALINGER: Were there Indians here when you got here?
COLUMBUS: Yes. I discovered them, too. I don’t think I had Thanksgiving with them, though. Those were Pilgrims. Maybe I was a Pilgrim, but probably not.
SALINGER: I wrote one book and nobody ever saw me again.
COLUMBUS: There were no books when I was alive.
Abraham Lincoln and Hitler
HITLER: Kill the Jews.
ABE: Free the slaves.
HITLER: Kill everyone, especially the Jews. Nazis are the best.
ABE: Emancipation Proclamation.
HITLER: Mein Kampf.
ABE: Four score and seven years ago.
HITLER: Kill all Jews!
ABE: I was shot in the head at a play, because the Civil War made people from the South angry.
HITLER: I created Nazis.
SUGGESTED READSA Graceland for Adolf
by Zev Borow (1/20/1999)
Sestina: Hitler Sestina
by Peter Davis (6/6/2006)
History’s a Bitch: A Dog Walk Through Time: Heel, Hitler
by Robb Fritz (4/27/2012)
RECENTLYThe Pagan Origins of Valentine’s Day
by Kathryn Doyle (2/12/2016)
List: Some (More) Things That are Worse Than Being Alone on Valentine’s Day
by Ali Garfinkel (2/12/2016)
Inside Witnesses: One Crime’s Many Narratives: Chris Loses Kevin Outside
by Marti Jonjak (2/12/2016)
POPULARJamie and Jeff’s Note to the Babysitter
by Paul William Davies (1/13/2016)
List: Alternatives to Resting Bitch Face
by Susan Harlan (1/25/2016)
Eight Excuses I Have Told My Son to Use for His Failure to Hand in English Homework, Excuses I Have Learned are Acceptable During a Thirty-Year Career in Journalism, Books, and Film
by Nick Hornby (2/5/2016)