The Story of O
What if Tom Friedman, Rahm Emanuel, or Helen Thomas wrote that anonymous new novel about Barack Obama?
O, by Sarah Palin
"Impossible!" O shouted. He swept his arm angrily across the Oval Office desk, sending manila folders and briefing papers flying. He didn't read them, anyway. He was red with rage, even though, you know. "There's no way she just passed me in the polls!"O had tried everything. He'd signed a bunch of hooey legislation to gin up populist sentiment. He'd used incendiary political rhetoric to rally his liberal minions. He'd even sent the tabloids after her family. Now he was out of options. He touched his palm to the scanner mounted underneath the desk. The fireplace flipped around to reveal a small armory. He reached for his favorite weapon, the classic M-40 sniper rifle. That would do the trick. He'd seen her reality TV program. He knew she'd be waiting for him. He was right.
O, by Maureen Dowd
O put down the newspaper. Bitch, he thought. But she's right. I do need to get my groove back.
O, by Joe Klein
"Ari, get me O," Biggs barked into the telephone. A beep, then:"This is O.""Mr. President, are you sitting down?""What is it, Biggs?"He took a deep breath. "Someone wrote a book. About the administration. It's getting all this attention and—""Calm down, Biggs. What are you saying?""It's a novel. It's about you. And they say it's a …"A what? Spit it out!""A game changer.""Christ.""They say it's bold, clever, insider-y …."Who wrote it? Woodward?""That's the craziest part. No one knows!""Was it you?""Me? Are you insane?""Then who was it? Jack?""Jack can barely read.""Ari?""He'd never be anonymous, with that ego.""Biggs, drop everything and find out who it is. Then have them erased. This could topple our administration, like Primary Colors did to Clinton.""I'm on it, sir. God help us all."
Christopher Beam is a writer living in Beijing.
Photograph of Joe Biden by Ahmad Al-Rubaye/AFP/Getty Images. Photograph of Rahm Emmanuel by Scott Olson/Getty Images. Photograph of Tom Friendman by Alex Wong/Getty Images for Meet the Press. Photograph of Maureen Dowd by Amy Sussman/Getty Images. Photograph of Christopher Buckley by Scott Gries/Getty Images. Photograph of Aaron Sorkin by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images. Photograph of Helen Thomas by Brendan Hoffman/Getty Images. Photograph of Sarah Palin by Thony Belizaire/AFP/Getty Images. Photograph of Theo Wargo/Getty Images for Time Inc.