Whose line is it?

After much angst, ___ accepts the presidency

Editor's note: Our Tuesday deadline prevented us from publishing a story in this week's Creative Loafing about the winner of the presidential election. In the spirit of reverence that such an occasion demands, however, we have included below a draft of an acceptance speech that we believe could be delivered by either candidate in the weeks following an exhaustive recount. We have omitted key words that might distinguish one candidate from the other, and we urge you, the reader, to fill in the blanks.

My fellow (plural noun denoting nationality or IQ level), I have just received a call from (name of opponent or Karl Rove), who conceded the election to us. I thanked him for campaigning with (adjective, e.g.: "integrity," "malice," "scant regard for simple human decency"), and told him I thought America owes him a (noun indicating a form of physical contact, plus "to," "in" or "on") the __ (part of the body).

This race has been a long one, and I realize that our margin of victory was (folksy metaphor indicating diminutive size). So tonight, I speak not only to those who voted for me, but to those who voted for my opponent. To you, I say, (verb) you. Now is the time for __ (choose "unity" or "pogroms").

We have heard your voices. You have told us that you are (adjective, e.g. "hopeful," "delusional," "catatonic") and that you believe the (choose "best," "worst" or "Biblically foretold last") days of America lie before us.

Who are these (type of person, plural) whose voices rang out so resoundingly today? They are the voices of people like (person in audience), who has struggled for years with (debilitating dermatological condition). (person in audience ), we have heard your cries, and __ (choose "help" or "your tax cut") is on the way.

There are so many Americans who work hard, who want a (adjective, e.g.: "brighter," "safer," "more Godly") future for their children, who believe the best government is the government that doesn't hesitate to (verb) them. And this administration will do that. We know we are just stewards of America, and that means we will work hard every day to (verb) the environment, to (verb) our children, to (verb) our sick, to create (adjective indicating mass quantity or menial nature) jobs for those without hope.

We can't afford to forget America's place in the world. Other nations look to us for guidance. For 18 months now, we have been busy ("ing" verb) Iraq. We have put our best and brightest in harm's way, and they have not let us down. Yet there is more to be done. So tonight, we tell the nations of the world that (verb indicating level of support or hostility) us: America (verb ending in "s") you. And to our brave fighting men and women: We will muster all our resources to (verb) you. Always remember that yours is a __ (adjective denoting righteousness or futility) mission.

Tonight, we also send out a special greeting to William Rehnquist. Mr. Chief Justice, we wish you a speedy (choose "recovery," "retirement" or "embalming"), and we (verb) you for your many years of service to this great country. Your knowledge of and (choose "respect" or "utter disregard") for the Constitution, combined with your (adjective, e.g.: "distinguished," "puzzling," "fascistic") decisions over the years have left an indelible mark on America.

I must also acknowledge the one person without whom all of this would still be a dream. That, of course, is (speaker's wife or Karl Rove). Y'know, just before I came out here to talk to you tonight, (he/she) said to me, " (first name of president-elect or Supreme Court designee), I'm so proud of your ability to (verb, e.g.: "lead," "intimidate," "bamboozle") the American people. They truly are the __ (adjective ending in "est") people on earth." I could only agree.

Finally, I want to leave you tonight with the words of one of our greatest presidents, Abraham Lincoln. Last night, I read once again his Second Inaugural Address, which seems as relevant as ever:

"With malice toward (noun, e.g.: "none," "Ralph Nader," "Florida voters," "the Dixie Chicks"), with charity for (noun, e.g.: "all," "Jacques Chirac," "the ketchup industry," "Halliburton"), with firmness in the right as God gives us to see the right, let us strive to (choose "finish" or "delegate to Dick Cheney") the work we are in, to (choose "bind up" or "exploit") the nation's wounds.

May God bless you, and may God __ (choose "bless" or "have mercy on") America.