July 3, 1776
Tomorrow the congress shall vote on wording for the Declaration of Our Independence from England. While I shall endorse its passage, I cannot deny my contempt for its author, the foul Virginian, Thomas Jefferson.
Today, as the congress was being called to order, I was heard to remark that I have come to the conclusion that one useless man is a shame, two is a law firm, and three or more is a congress. While Delegate Cushing struggled at breath for his chortling, Delegate Jefferson closed his eyes, cocked his head askew (pretending to rest it upon a “pillow” of his hands) and pretended to snore loudly.
“Dear Sir,” I responded, hoping to restore a modicum of dignity to the proceedings. “Be-calm yourself.”
Jefferson, in what initially seemed an attempt at reconciliation, apologized and told me he’d actually commissioned a large run of my Thoughts on Government from a local printer. He informed me that they were of service to a great number of the congress.
He then extended his hand to me, and, mollified by his contrite demeanor, I reached to shake it. But at the last moment, he jerked his hand away and adjusted his wig, running his hand along the side of it!
Jefferson then called a number of the other delegates over and pretended to study me intently, with and without the aid of Benjamin Franklin’s spectacles, while asking in jest, “Is that Benedict Arnold, or is that John Adams?”
“’Tis I, John Adams!” I retorted.
In response, Jefferson informed the congress he was going to pretend to be someone else for their amusement. He then produced a lace handkerchief from his pocket and, holding it between his thumb and forefinger, his wrist cocked at a 90-degree angle, began prancing about in the manner of a fop or dandy, proclaiming, “I’m John Adams! I favor a strong federal government to the detriment of states rights and the sovereignty of the individual.”
“I demand you cease these unflattering characterizations of me,” I cried.
Resolving to fight fire with fire, I called over the delegation from the Province of New Hampshire and proclaimed loudly, “I, too, would like to slander and ridicule a fellow delegate through a keen approximation of his physical characteristics and mannerisms.”
Then, hunching over and placing a finger in my nose while adopting the tone and register of Jefferson’s peculiar Virginian vocal timbre, I proclaimed, “I’m Tom-E Jefferson! The delegate from Virgin-I-a!”
While the majority of the congress looked away from my ill-advised impersonation, Jefferson began to clap loudly, pretending to congratulate me.
Feigning enthusiasm for my performance, he slapped me on the back, proclaiming, “An excellent characterization!” Then turning to the congress and placing his hand next to his mouth in order to shield his words from me, but still speaking with a volume intended to be audible to everyone present, continued, “It was as if your mother were in the room with us, dressed in your clothing.”
“How dare you?” I screamed. “My mother is dead.”
Jefferson looked genuinely surprised and, turning again to address the congress, proclaimed, “She seemed animated enough last night!”
So filled with rage was I that I retired to the lavatory in order to regain my composure. Upon entering the privy I noticed a stack of my Thoughts on Government, resting next to the seat, with a sign beside it in Jefferson’s hand, penned, “Not for reading!” and an arrow pointing to my texts!
On several occasions Delegate Jefferson has smelled of hemp and mead before the noon meal. He also frequently retires to an antechamber with his servant Sally Hemings, proclaiming they are off to “a different kind of congress.” He says this while winking!
When pressed as to the infrequency of his visits to the bedchamber of his wife, Jefferson recites the crude maxim, “Once a quill is dipped in black ink, it forever favors that hue.”
But enough of Jefferson and his clownish antics; I must rest. Tomorrow I shall help birth a republic.
Ah, what’s this? I hear a knock upon my door! And quick footfalls! What could it be? A gift from an admirer? A note of great import? I’ll just have a quick look…
Indignity! The indignity of indignities!
Upon opening the door, I observed a sack upon my stoop, and it was a-flame! I quickly moved to smother the inferno by stomping upon it soundly, only to discover the contents: horse void! From a sick horse!
As I recoiled in horror from my investigative sniff, the sound of Jefferson and his cohorts’ cackles resounded down the cobblestone streets.
My only solace comes from my steely belief in the providential certainty that history will reveal Jefferson as the base and immoral cad he truly is.