Politics in America 31: Betty Sue Pudding Goes to War

B S was now the First Lady, and she made up her mind to do the First Lady gig real big. She would do Jackie and Nancy and Martha and Dolley proud. She took one look at her new digs, the interior of the White House, and said, “This will never do. This joint needs a new do.”

All those fancy, dancy post-modern paintings, all that classic china, all that furniture that looked like it was designed by a machine, all that…well, you get my drift. It had to go. There was no way that a Pudding from Snort Holler was going to live in a place that looked like a museum. What the White House needed was some down-homyness. And it needed it quick. Just seeing the place like this was enough to make a Podunk County girl want to puke. And puke big time.

Nope, this would never do. If she was going to live in a place for four years, she wanted it comfortable. The White House definitely needed some redecoratin’ to get Betty Sue away from all the previous First Lady bad tastes.

First off she would get some spittoons so the folks could spittoon when they needed to spittoon. There’d have to be some rockin’ chairs for the front porch. And a velvet Elvis or two for the walls. At the front of the White House, there would be a nice welcome mat that said, “Y’all c’mon in, y’hear.” And that ugly Lincoln bed definitely had to go. A nice straw bed for there and for the Residence bedroom too.

For the Residence, a big wood stove would be nice. Some new wallpaper too. Something with bright colors like purple and green together. She and P F just loved them colors. And the piece de resistance would be the bean bag chairs.

Since The Great Man was just downstairs, Betty Sue Pudding decided that there was no time like the present to start her new do.

She went to The Great Man. “Hon,” she said, right there in the Oval Office.

In the past, P F Sneaze would have ignored Betty Sue Pudding, his darling wife. Now that she was the First Lady, he thought maybe that might not be a good idea, him being the President of all the people and she being one of the peeps.

“I want to redecorate the White House,” she said.

Well, P F Sneaze was not averse to redecoratin’. The place did need some Weazel Sneaze. He reached into his pocket and pulled out a hundred dollars and said, “Here, Puddin’, take this and redecorate to your heart’s content.”

Betty Sue did love it when her husband called her “Puddin'”. But she had to let him in on a little secret. When it comes to White House redecorating, a hundred dollars is not going to be enough money to do the do up right. If it only were, all those First Ladies of the past would have stayed out of trouble.

“This won’t do, Hon,” she said with the sweetest voice you ever wanted to hear. “They tell me that it’s going to take a lot more than this.”

Being a good husband, and realizing that Betty Sue was not going to go away until she got what she wanted, P F Sneaze pulled out some more money and handed it to her. “This ought to do,” he said.

“Hon,” Betty Sue batted her eyes flirtatiously. “This is not going to do either. This is the White House. We have to do it right.”

“Well, how much?” There was a bit of frustration in his voice.

“Now, Hon,” she said, not going to let her husband speak to her in that manner. After all, she was Betty Sue Pudding from Snort Holler. No man was allowed to speak to her that way. Not even a husband. She didn’t raise her voice. But P F Sneaze knew from her voice that she meant business. “Don’t speak to me in that manner,”it said, and it said it loud and clear.

There was nothing for him to do but say, “Yes, Ma’am.”

“That’s better,” then she went back to her sweetness. “I’m just going to need fifty million dollars to redecorate this place up right, Hon.”

“Is that Yankee money or Confederate bills?” P F had a stash of Confederate bills hid under the boards of his living room back home. His daddy kept hoping they would be legal tender one of these days. It was still not a foregone conclusion that the South had lost the War. The South could rise again. You just never knew.

“That’s Yankee money,” she said, batting her eyes again.

The Great Man called in his Chief of Staff and let him know how much Betty Sue needed for redecorating. “Just take it out of petty cash,” The President said.

“Mr. President, we don’t have that kind of money in petty cash. On top of that, we have no money in the bank and Congress is not going to give us any.”

As you can see, the President was on the horns of a dilemma.

“What happened to all the petty cash?”

“Inauguration expenses.”

Betty Sue Pudding, the First Lady, gave her husband, The Great Man, that look. You know the one. The one that says you’d better fix this problem or you are going to be in deep do-do. One thing was for sure. The President could think of a lot of better ways to spend his time than spend it in deep do-do. And that was industrial strength deep do-do too.

Next Week The Horns of a Dilemma


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