PHOENIX—Stressing that it would be really good to get there by Saturday afternoon, the U.S. Secretary of Needing Transportation issued a formal request Monday stating that he would "be happy" to tag along on any potential weekend trips to Tucson.

Addressing the nation from the department's headquarters in his friend Brad's living room, Needing Transportation Secretary Kevin explained the importance of leaving for Arizona by noon on Saturday at the latest.

"I realize that this department has been hitting the nation up for rides a lot lately, but in times of adversity like these I know I can count on the American people to pull together and do me a real solid," Secretary Kevin said. "See, my cousin Jeff's band is playing this gig at Señor Ja-Ja's on Saturday, and he said I could probably do a guest set if I wanted, so any assistance at all would be appreciated. But only if you're heading to Tucson anyway, of course."

Added Kevin, "I offer my solemn promise to all interested parties that this would totally be worth your while."

Established in 1972 with the mission of finding transportation alternatives for its inaugural secretary, Mike, the DNT has secured more than 20,000 rides for various department officials over the years.

"I know this request is totally last minute, and that [Deputy Secretary] Doug already called on the American people to pick him up from that bogus party last Friday night," Kevin said. "But this is a Department of Needing Transportation emergency. Code 5 stuff we're talking about here."

In addition to allocating a "few bucks" to offset gasoline costs, Kevin promised potential ride-givers that the department would totally cover the cost of an Arby's Beef 'n Cheddar sandwich at any passing rest stop.

Hoping to secure the deal, Kevin then began to call on several Arizona residents by name.

"Peter Dunston of Mesa: I know your brother lives outside Tucson, so if you happen to be heading that way, the department would be very indebted to you for your service," Kevin said. "Plus, if you were interested in catching my set, I could, in my capacity as a government official, speak to the club's owner about, you know, maybe comping you in."

Secretary Kevin also appealed to member of the U.S. Congress, including Reps. Raúl Grijalva and Gabrielle Giffords of Arizona's 7th and 8th Districts, to make a commitment toward "hitting [him] back on the karma" for any favors he has done them in the past.

Kevin added that if members of Congress wanted to make this a "full-on road trip," they could take Grijalva's Buick LeSabre and possibly bring along a cooler for "food and beer and whatever else."

Department officials noted that any difficulties finding lodging for the proposed trip would likely be minimal, as the secretary "had some old colleagues that might still live out near Tucson," and that, if said options fell through, prospective ride-givers could always just pack some blankets and pillows and "sleep out under the stars."

According to sources, the situation would be a lot easier if the Department of Providing a Couch to Crash On were not presently headquartered in Pittsburgh.

"As an added incentive, the Department will be supplying a fully functioning Sony Discman with an adapter for cassette tape players," Secretary Kevin told reporters. "This Discman would permit us to chill out the whole ride, grabbing some tunes while we take in the sights. This sounds like a cool way to spend a weekend to me."

Added Kevin, "So, my fellow Americans, what do you say?"

Kevin added that he can be reached at Brad's house until 7 p.m. or so, after which he will be working at Stokley's liquor store.