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AWAY     4'?m6f Secular going-away party

(editors enter one or two at a time, sit at conference table)

CHIEF -- (enters with armful of file folders, pen, stands at 
head of table) Alright, people, this newspaper goes to press in 
less than two hours and we still don't have a headline for the 
front page. City Desk, what do you have that will sell 
newspapers?

CITY EDITOR - Well, chief, as you know, mayor _________ (local 
mayor) was accused of embezzling two million dollars from the 
city treasury and the city is on the brink of insolvency.

CHIEF - Well, that looks like a promising lead story. 

CITY EDITOR - Actually, Chief, I'd rather see (honored guest)
________________________ in the headlines.

CHIEF - ______________________? What about ___________________?

CITY EDITOR - Haven't you heard? ____________________ is 
leaving, going away.

CHIEF - No, I didn't know. That changes everything. (pause) 
Where was I? Oh. Sports desk, I suppose you want to go with the 
big story about the ______________________. (local sports team)

SPORTS EDITOR - Well, yes, the ____________________ are moving 
to Havana, Cuba. 

CHIEF -- That's terrible!

SPORTS EDITOR - Yes, but if I were you, Chief, I'd go with the 
story about _________________________'s leaving. That's far 
worse.

CHIEF - Business Desk, terrible news from Wall Street, huh?

BUSINESS EDITOR - Yes, it looks like all the economists are 
predicting a big, big recession this year. But, I think the big 
story is _________________________. Nobody will ever be able to 
replace him.

CHIEF - National Desk, is it true what they say about the 
scandal in the White House?

NATIONAL EDITOR - Yes, Chief, it looks like the President 
himself and six of his top aides are going to be indicted. But I 
think the voters would rather hear about ___________________. 
Hey, wait a minute. Maybe HE could run for president!

CHIEF - I don't know. International desk, what do you hear about 
the Russians?

INTERNATIONAL EDITOR - Well, the CIA has confirmed it. The 
Russians have definitely reaimed their nukes at the United 
States. World War Three is imminent. But I recommend we go with 
the __________________________  story for the front page. 
No way we'll EVER recover from that.

CHIEF - Well, I guess that make it unanimous. The headline will 
read "____________________________ leaves, nation is stunned."
I want a sidebar about the impact on the sports world, the 
business world, and from the White House. Got it?

ALL -- Yes, sir.

NATIONAL EDITOR - Oh, Chief, the telegrams and letters have 
already come pouring in from around the country. 

CHIEF - They have?

NATIONAL EDITOR - (hands telegrams and letters to Chief) Yes, 
here.

CHIEF - (reads telegrams and letters from dignitaries)

CHIEF - City Desk, you have a half hour to dig up some 
man-on-the-street comments about ________________________'s 
leaving.

CITY EDITOR - Way ahead of you, Chief. Here are some telegrams 
and letters from some of the locals who won't be able to attend 
the going away party.

CHIEF - (reads telegrams and letters from well-wishers)

CHIEF - International desk, I want you to contact the United 
Nations Secretary General to see if ________________________'s 
leaving will impact the Russian nuclear threat.

INTERNATIONAL EDITOR - Already did that, Chief. The Russian 
president was so grief-stricken over ________________________'s 
leaving that he's called for disarmament.

CHIEF - I thought so. (claps hands) Alright, everybody, let's 
get started. We have a deadline to meet. Let's get busy!

(optional ending) 

NATIONAL EDITOR -- Oh, chief, would you mind if we paused for a 
moment to sing....

(all rise)

CHIEF -- Oh, sure. (leads singing) For he's a jolly good fellow...

(all exit)

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