June 29th, 2012
08:29 PM ET

Letters to the President #1257: 'Taking a break'

Reporter's Note: Every time the sun rises, I write a letter to President Obama. Well, not at that precise moment. I mean, sometimes I’m still asleep…

Dear Mr. President,

We’ve had a wild day around here, in a way. For some reason we’ve had several false alarms with the fire alarm system sending everyone grabbing their bags and heading to the stairs, only to have our security folks come on the intercom system and tell us everything is ok, go back to work.

As you probably know, anytime people in D.C. get an excuse to knock off early on a Friday afternoon in summer they are half way to the beach before their computer cools off. So you can imagine how frustrating all the false starts were. A lot of our folks, I think, were kind of hoping we’d be told that we had to clear out and just come back on Monday. But alas, no.

I’m not complaining. I have so much to do following up on the big Supreme Court decision, I could not afford to split that early anyway. Which reminds me of an old joke that TV news people like to tell. Don’t know if you’ve ever heard it.

A producer, a correspondent, and a cameraman have chartered a helicopter to a remote island, and it crashes in a freak storm. They wash up on the beach amid the wreckage, where they find a brass lamp half buried in the sand. They rub it. A genie appears and says, “I will grant each of you a wish.”

The correspondent says, “I’ve spent so many years on the road, I’m so ready for a break from the travel and dangers, I want you to send me home with enough money that I’ll never need to do this again!” Poof. He’s gone.

The cameraman says, “I’ve lugged this heavy gear all over the planet, sweating and struggling; I want a beautiful place in the mountains with a beautiful view, a good dog, and no worries for the rest of my days.” Poof. He’s gone.

Then the genie turns to the producer and says, “And what can I do for you?”
To which the producer responds, “Get those guys back here. We have work to do!”

Anyway, call if you get a moment. I’m still here working and could use the break.


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