I got to the local TV station where I work early that morning. Everyone was there, waiting for the day's Assignment. Our Program Director is Fred Dewberry. He runs the place - well sort of...
By the time I walked in, he was already starting to hit his stride. I could hear him all the way from my cubbyhole, barking orders, threatening reporters. - They don't call him a Reporters worse nightmare for nothing!
As I drank my coffee, I kept hearing snatches of his tirade - something about downsizing... having to cut back... (Ah, well, why do I think this may not be news to some of you folks these days?)
"Dag... ! Get in here!"
"You rang... ! Oh Media Master... ?" I said, trying for the light approach.
"You getting smart with me?" he snarled, in his best - don't talk back - tone of voice.
Well - Hey! I needed this job, so I decided I'd better be cool and tread through this conversational minefield very carefully.
"I got a Special Assignment for you, so try to pay attention."
"Sure. Okay-" I managed to say, just before he cut me off.
"Dag... we're hearing vague rumors about this strange bunch of people.
The Media has started referring to them as the Namby Pamby tribe."
"What are they? Indians?" I asked, feigning interest.
"No," he said, it seems their main thing is they don't get involved - they don't vote - you might say they're dropouts. But - strangely enough, it seems they do have the approval of our government."
"Well," I said looking dubious, "That's not always necessarily a good thing."
"Anyway, I want you to drive out there and check this guy out. He's supposed to be their Leader. Here's the address, "he said, handing me a slip of paper.
"By the way... can you believe this? He says his name really is Mr. Pamby."
"The Head Namby Pamby, huh." I said.
"You know, Sir" I suggested, "I'm much better on the - if it bleeds, it leads - type of story. Didn't I hear something about an old lady backing her car over her cat - or something... ?"
"That one requires a delicate touch. I gave it to Slim Jones. Now... get out of here!"
"Go... ! Or do I need to remind you about the cut-backs that are coming?"
"No Sir, color me gone!"
Looking for the elusive Mr. Pamby
Driving along, I looked at the address the Director had given me. That's weird, I thought, 77 Rundown Lane. It sounded very dubious to me. It sure didn't look at all promising.
Within a couple of minutes, my worst suspicions were confirmed. I found myself heading deep into one of the worst sections of the city.
Pulling up in front of a very decrepit house that had been longing desperately for a coat of fresh paint for some time, I rang the doorbell.
After a while, the door finally opened. A middle-age guy, looking a bit worse for the wear, stood in the doorway looking at me.
"Whatya want?" he said, in a not unfriendly tone.
"Are you Mr. Pamby?" I asked, politely.
"Yeah," who wants to know?" he said.
"My name is Dag. I'm a TV reporter for the local Television Station."
"Oh, yeah... ," he grumbled, "that Program Manager of yours called and said you'd be dropping by," he laughed. "You're supposed to interview me, right?"
"Yeah... right," I confirmed, not exuding a whole lot of confidence.
The Namby Pamby Tribe's secrets are revealed.
"Okay, guys. Roll tape," I said. With that, the interview was underway.
"Mr. Pamby, Could you tell our Viewers when this Tribe of yours was first formed?
"Well, it was several years ago and at that time there was only a few of us. We're getting so big now - millions of people - it's getting harder for them to ignore us." he chuckled, obviously pleased with himself.
"Could you tell us, Mr. Pamby, what are some of your principles and beliefs?"
"Well, I want one thing understood - right up front. We're patriotic Americans. We support our government. Yes Sir! We're definitely for honor and integrity, especially in the White House," he explained.
"We feel Presidents should be like George Washington. He never told a lie - at least they never caught him at it!" he laughed. "Of course that Cherry tree thing with the Axe was kind of suspect..." he grudgingly admitted.
"And, look how truthful, our current President turned out to be. He promised us he would bring honor and integrity back to the White House, didn't he? Ya gotta love a guy like that," he explained.
"But Sir... ," I tried to explain, "There's been some serious questions raised about that honor and integrity thing."
"Yeah... I know. But not by us! Of course, not everyone is as patriotic as we are, right?"
About now I'm thinking... What planet is this guy from? Mr. Pamby was really wound up now - continuing to wax eloquently with his less-than-brilliant observations...
"Why, as soon as he won the war, He flew himself right out to that Aircraft Carrier just so he could let us know about the Mission Accomplished thing." he prattled on.
Once I had recovered from the shock - I stammered.
But Sir... the war is still going on. Also, I'm pretty sure it was one of the Navy pilots who flew him out - I really don't think he flies anymore."
"I don't know... he looked very authentic to me in that flight suit. If he doesn't fly - why was he wearing that suit?"
.... There is more of this story ...