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Home The Feuilleton of MilSan and MikWag Corn-pone News Network

Corn-pone News Network

Corn-pone News Network


You tell me whar a man gits his corn pone, en I'll tell you what his 'pinions is."
Mark Twain, Corn-pone Opinions (1900)

New York. CNN headquarters. April 2010.

Captain Fareed R. Zakaria is in the studio, showboating along. His eyes sparkle with animation and a smile undimmed by the flickering ratings at CNN plays upon his lips.

His paddlewheeler “The GPS” is churning its way upstream, steady as she goes, belching the usual white smoke.  Easy water, not much current.  Looks like nothin’s gonna interrupt the weekly milk run. Just one last flat stretch before tying up for the night—50 seconds more and it’s done.  He swings his bare feet up onto the anchor’s desk, gets out his pipe, and sets himself to dreaming about fresh-baked huckleberry pie and other comforts awaiting him at home.  The control booth begins the count down for "The Last Look,” the closing segment:

“Five, four, three, two, you, Fareed.”

-- And now, for the last look:  Russian Rap reportedly has a new hero.  It’s the unassuming man in the gray sweater…

Captain Zakaria’s ears prick up.  Something like “Mark Twain!” is ringing in his head.  He spots the danger:  President Putin floating towards him on the teleprompter.  “Uh oh!  SOS! Putin ain’t de President, he de Prime Minister.   Stop de teleprompter, for chrissakes!  No, keep’t cool, man.  C’mon. C’mon ahead on‘t!  Oh-oh, noooo, … I feelin’ pale.  Ain’t gonna go! Can’t do nothin’ now!  Whata boner!  How hadn’t we ketched it!  Shall I git ‘m?  Change it?  No time.  What to do?  Go to de all-savin’ commercial?  Too late.  Run o’er it!  Folk won’t notice.  Who know what’a fella Putin is, who cares dat Putin ain’t de President, but de Prime Minister?  Folk can’t tell dem apart anyway.  Yea, yea.  Jus’ read it as de teleprompter says.  Run him o’er and get away!  What ‘f he comes up again?  ‘mpossible.  No time.  Go for ‘t, Fareed, jus’ do it!  C’mon ahead on it!  You gotta do it!  Tell’em dat de devil made you do it.

…It’s the unassuming man in the gray sweater right there in the front row. Yup, that’s President Putin…

Oosh, thank God!  He gone.  Oh, great Caesar’s ghost of inf’nite mercy, thank you! Wait, what if’n he come back again?  What if dis President Putin return?  If’n he return, we’ll stop de teleprompter.  No, we ain’t gonna stop’t.  Say dat it was intentional?  Apologize?  For what?  Dat' Putin come up wit' anotha  euphemism for 'Emperor?'  Appeasement ain’t gonna lead us anywheres.  A joke?  Pull out some kinda joke? How do my hair look?  No, humor ain’t gonna help. I betcha Putin don’t unnerstand no humor.  KGB might put somethin in my pie!  Plus, we serious guys, why try to be funny ‘bout things dat ain’t dat funny in de least?  De fellas at Comedy Central own de rights o‘er it.  So, no humor.  Acknowledge da mistake?  We a reliable source, ain’t we?  We ain’t supposed to feed dem corn-pone ‘pinion.  Maybe some kin'a trick shot...y'know, like give 'em a wink and richochet da word 'President' off de rapping story into 'Prezdent' and bounce him into rapper 'Grand Master PrezPut.'  Am I smiling enough?  O, brothas, please, please – wake up, mind de teleprompter, get back on course, sink Putin ‘Da President.  O help me, Moses!

…This man who proudly touts his education on the streets of St. Petersburg, was nominated for the first annual Russian Street Awards honoring the best in Russian hip pop.  The award now came for this performance that you are looking at…

Whadda relief!  Thank you, Moses!

…But it was not the dance styling the Russian people were impressed with nor was it his rhyming skills.  It was what he had to say about hip pop. “Street rap may be a little rough,” Putin said, “but it contains social meaning.”  He went on “graffiti becomes a real elegant art, break dance is something special.”…

Uh oh!  Here come dat President Putin again, and he in a speedboat with his shirt off and there are two of him.  Oh, tick-tick-tick, President Putin cloned himself.  OH MY GOD! President Putins, get out de way!  I ain’t expecting nothin’ else from you. What can a body do?  Correck or not correck?  If'n I correck, folk gonna notice da first boner. If I ain’t correct, what the chances anybody notice?  It ain’t gonna make no difference.  Ah, what the heck!  I gonna stay cool and jess keep doin’ me. Here we go…

--Even after all those efforts at being hip, President Putin didn’t get the prize. Sorry, Mr. President.


[Source: GPS April 25, 2010 transcript, video (57 seconds)]

N.B. GPS is not broadcast live.  Why they didn’t reshoot this clip, we do not know.

The Russian media covered this MTV event on November 15th, 2009.  Why Captain Zakaria covered it on April 25, 2010, we also do not know.