Okay, so today I sat through a 2.5 hour meeting -- which normally would put me over the edge and force me to verbally abuse the office intern for not knowing in advance that they should be on standby to interrupt any meeting where I might potentially be getting bored -- But I shouldn't have to TELL THEM when they need to show up.
It's an internship!! There is a reason we don't pay you (because you could probably sue me).
Anyway, so this meeting was like edge of your seat diplomacy!!! There was action, there was adventure..there were donuts. Everything you need to brew up some sort of international incident. HOWEVER, this time it was not an incident of my making...
Okay, so NO SHIT! There we were. Sitting in the most importanty of importanty conference rooms (that I'm allowed to use) for what will undoubtedly be the most crucial meeting of the year (for our intern). So a team of crack diplomats from Team America are meeting with an unnamed (you have to wait for the movie) foreigners talking about issues that are on the cutting edge of our national policy and/or security!!! (I'm not trying to be coy with that one -- I just honestly wasn't paying attention and have no idea why we were meeting with these people....)
So, naturally, because I'm a "seasoned leader" I realized that I am likely not qualified to actually speak for the USG in an official capacity -- So I ensured that the smart people were there to answer the questions after I finished pontificating. So we're about halfway through the meeting and I am mentally congratulating myself for yet another international incident free day when the translator asks the Big Wig Foreigner (BWF) for clarification on what he means. SUDDENLY, one of the USG smarty-pants leans in to clarify what he thinks the foreigner means (because that is always helpful! Almost like when we lecture them on their culture and stuff...) and -- as if in slow-motion footage -- he lets out the most horrendous fart!!
I dont' even know how to describe it. It started as kind of a high pitched whine and then ended with what sounded like rapid gunfire -- but only echo-ey (because we're in the big, marble, importanty conference room. In the initial moments following the incident, the room was eerily silent -- as we all sat there wondering what the hell we were supposed to do now?
I mean, the international diplomacy handbook did not cover this type of situation, and I gotta be honest -- I was SERIOUSLY DYING. I was literally experiencing physical pain trying to not only hold it together and not burst out laughing (because honestly...is there EVER a time when a fart is not funny?? EVER?? I submit to you, there is NOT!), but I was also trying to stop my body from erupting into the internal-hold-in-your-laughter convulsions. In fact, I think I might have actually hurt myself -- my throat is STILL sore.
Anyway, following the initial blast and horrified silence -- the translator looked around -- as if he were trying to determine whether he should translate that; AND, if so...how the hell do you say that in Arabic! The offender, whom we now call, "Gassy McPoopshispants" just kinda smirked and shrugged -- although he might have apologized, but i had to rapidly look away in order to control my impending outburst.
As I'm searching the room for somewhere to look -- the more junior members of the foreign delegation looked down at their notebooks, clearly a victim of the diplomatic shock and awe campaign. However, the senior official looked me straight in the eye, cocked his head, and lifted one brow. I gotta admit...at that point, I almost lost it.
Well played, foreign man...well played.
So I stared at the donuts in order to salvage any semblance of maturity left in me...And then I totally noticed that there was only one chocolate cream filled kind left. And I could tell the intern was eyeing it. THIS SOBERED ME RIGHT UP..and quickly!!
Distracted, I was able to move through the incident...however, after I finished my chocolate donut (ha HA intern!!) my glance fell upon the perpetrator of the incident. We made eye contact. It all came back....
In what was obviously a flash of genius, I interrupted the proceedings to suggest a "smoke break" (foreigners like to smoke -- Thank GOD!) and the entire entourage leaped up and headed for the elevator.
As the doors closed, we all turned as one and looked at the perpetrator... and literally, lost it! At one point, I put my head down on the table and cried -- I was laughing that hard!!!
Eventually, the foreigners returned and they calmly resumed the meeting.
My only regret: I should have sent the translator withthem so he could tell us how hard THEY were laughing once they managed to get away from us.
However, rest assured, I have once again ensured that the US of A is safe for democracy!
Diamonds are HIGHLY overrated.....
1 day ago