Friday, April 11, 2008


Running dogs blow out the eternal flame

Chris Henning, smh

April 11, 2008

Scene: A sewer beneath Canberra. In the dim light we see a trickle of nasty water meandering down the centre of the huge pipe. Rats scuttle about and the occasional alligator wanders past. In the distance we hear a tinny noise that grows louder and louder. It is a group of men singing China's national anthem. We see them approach: 20 men in two lines, wearing identical blue jumpsuits, running in step and surrounding the Olympic torchbearer.Men (singing): Arise! All who refuse to be slaves!/ Let our flesh and blood become our new Great Wall!/ As the Chinese nation faces its greatest peril,/ All forcefully expend their last cries./ Arise! Arise! Arise!
They stop at a crossroads in the sewer. The anthem peters out.

Man 2: Where the hell are we?

Man 1: I thought you had the map.

Man 2: I have, but I think I've been reading it upside down. Where do we go here?

Man 1: Is this Manuka?

Man 3: No, Manuka was back there. I think this is Kingston. Unless it's Fyshwick.

Man 1: Wait - we've been here before. I recognise that alligator.

Man 2: All the alligators look the same to me.

Man 3: All the sewers look the same to me.

Man 4: That's because all Canberra sewers go in circles.

Man 3: Ohhhh. I'm sick of this. Couldn't we just climb out a manhole and run down the street?

Man 1: Silence, weakling. We would be playing into the enemy's hands. They are trying to ambush the holy Olympic flame. We would put the honour of China at risk from reactionary and criminal Tibetan elements.

Man 4: What's the point of carrying the Olympic torch down a sewer? I mean, some propaganda coup that is.

Man 1: (Steely, pitiless gaze, menacing): Do you doubt the wisdom of the Central Committee, No. 4?

Man 4: No, no, no. But we would have given them the slip by now, surely? I haven't heard any protesters for a while.

Man 1: They may be bluffing.

Torchbearer (A famous Australian athlete who shall remain nameless for fear of Tibetan reprisals): Can we get on with it? This place pongs.

Man 1: This is wise counsel. I have made my decision. We shall take the left fork.
All (Running and singing): All forcefully expend their last cries./ Arise! Arise! Arise!/ Our million hearts beat as one,/ Brave the enemy's fire, March on! (There is distant roar of water.)
All: Brave the enemy's fire, March on!/ March on! March on! On!

As the roar of water gets louder, Man 1 turns and looks behind him, reacting with terror to what he sees.

Man 1: The revisionist Tibetan criminals and their running dogs have flushed in unison. Run!

All are swept away.

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