We are non-commercial, all volunteer and supported by our readers. Please help sustain the Dew by making a donation.
Islands in the stream
Proceedings of the House Sub-Committee on Relocation and Allocation of Personnel Resources Subject to Allocation and Relocation Guidelines.
CHAIRMAN: The House Committee on Relocation and Allocation of Personnel Resources Subject to Allocation and Relocation Guidelines will come to order. Mr. Gingko you may proceed.
GINGKO: Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Mr. Wingle, you are the Director of Human Asset Relocation for the State Department.
WINGLE: That is correct.
GINGKO: And you are in charge of human asset relocation, correct?
WINGLE: Well … sure.
GINGKO: And what does your job involve?
WINGLE: Making sure our many embassies, consulates and economic missions and task forces are properly staffed.
GINGKO: With people?
WINGLE: Yes, people.
GINGKO: No animals?
WINGLE: Not to my knowledge.
WINGLE: Yes, we are establishing an agricultural trade center.
GINGKO: What kind of agriculture, Mr. Wingle?
WINGLE: We’re going to help the Greek government expand the production of olives and fruit.
GINGKO: I wasn’t aware that olives were an agricultural product. I always thought they came in the little bottles you buy at Publix.
WINGLE: You have to grow the olives before they can be put into the bottles.
GINGKO: What variety of olive has the little red thingies in them?
WINGLE: I’m not quite sure how to answer that.
GINGKO: Don’t worry, you can’t be expected to know everything. That’s what Congress is for.
WINGLE: That’s a relief.
GINGKO: Now, this island of Patmos, it belongs to Greece, correct?
GINGKO: Why is that?
WINGLE: Why is what?
GINGKO: Why does Patmos belong to Greece instead of, say, South Carolina?
WINGLE: South Carolina isn’t a sovereign nation.
GINGKO: Really? I didn’t know that.
WINGLE: Life is full of surprises.
GINGKO: You noticed that too?
WINGLE: There are unexpected surprises at every turn.
GINGKO: I understand Patmos is where John the Apostle wrote the Book of Revelations .
WINGLE: That’s what they say.
GINGKO: Who are they?
WINGLE: A lot of people.
GINGKO: Have you met John yet?
WINGLE: John … ?
GINGKO: John the Apostle.
WINGLE: No … uh … you know, Mr. Gingko, the Book of Revelations was written over nineteen hundred years …. forget it. No, I have not met him.
GINGKO: Please tell him I said hello.
GINGKO: Living on Patmos probably will be scary.
GINGKO: Yeah. Patmos isn’t very big and if you get too many people on it the whole island will sink.
GINGKO: I owned a nine-foot motor yacht once and those things can go right to the bottom.
WINGLE: I …..
GINGKO: I don’t care how carefully you anchor a boat, or a raft or a small island, they WILL sink. And that’s a fact.
WINGLE: Mr. Gingko …
GINGKO: Yes sir, those little patches of land will tip right on over and disappear into the brine.
WINGLE: Mr. Gingko …
GINGKO: Right on down to the bottom of the deep blue sea. Splash, splash.
WINGLE: Excuse me …
WINGLE: Islands are the tops of mountains sticking up out of the water.
GINGKO: Nah … you’re making that up, right? You’re saying if you put a couple of hundred additional people and animals on Patmos, the island won’t get overloaded and sink, and every man, woman, child, poodle and goldfish won’t get eaten by sea monsters?
WINGLE: That’s correct. Everybody lives.
GINGKO: You wouldn’t kid me would you?
WINGLE: Wouldn’t dream of it.
GINGKO: Islands don’t float. Wow. Sure changes my thinking. Well thank the Lord! I was so worried!
WINGLE: I’m sure you’ll sleep better.
GINGKO: This has been a fascinating discussion.
WINGLE: You have no idea.
GINGKO: That’s all I have, Mr. Chairman. But Mr. Wingle I’d like a moment of your time after the hearings. I have some more olive questions.
Worthy of Comment
Also on the Dew
Back in 1937 when Gene Talmadge was finishing his second two-year term as governor of Georgia, he took a big step. For Miss Mitt (his wife), he built a new home on U.S. Highway 341, between McRae and Lumber City, in his home county of Telfair. In today's world, this residence looks much like a Southern 5-4-and-a-door, with two-story white columns, red brick, and set about 100 yards back from the highway in a grove of pine trees. But it wasn't built in today's world, but constructed 77 years ago when most people in Telfair County probably didn't have running water in Read on →
In the summer of 1968 a man walked into Dad’s saw shop gushing about a guy making beaucoups of money. College was out for the summer and I needed a job. The next thing I know, Dad and I were sitting in Augusta’s Bell Auditorium waiting for pitchman, Glenn Turner, whose company, Koscot Cosmetics, needed door-to-door salesmen, the gullible preferred. From the back of the auditorium a chant took rise ... “Money!” “Money!” “Money!” “Money!” “Money!” “Money!” and then men cut cartwheels down the aisles all the way to the stage. It was like the scene in the Blues Brothers where a rapturous Jake Elrod some Read on →
As part of my winter endeavors, I have ventured off with Dante on a journey through The Divine Comedy. So far, so good, but as my wife often asks, “Why?” I am not a religious person, at least in the conventional way, so why indeed am I stumbling along in a fourteenth-century conceit of a man’s mid-life crisis? As it turns out, I am following a Georgetown University on-line class which is serving as my guide, my own Virgil. As we finished The Inferno this week, our professor posed the question that Dante was ultimately trying to answer, “Who Am I?” Entering into Dant Read on →
I live in Macon, Georgia, a small city (population: around 100,000, 99,957 of whom don’t know how to drive) some sixty miles from the traffic hell of Atlanta. Don’t get me wrong: I love Atlanta. It’s the home of the Braves (insert The Star-Spangled Banner pun here), the Falcons, the Varsity, the High Museum of Art, Coca-by-God-Cola, and many other wonderful things. Its traffic, however, I can live without. Atlanta is right up there with Los Angeles and Washington, D.C. for having the worst traffic in the country. There is an interchange in Atlanta formally named the Tom Moreland Interchange (Tom Morel Read on →