Exiled!Commentary • ISSUE 35•10 • Mar 17, 1999 By T. Herman Zweibel, Publisher Emeritus (photo circa 1911) Cast into the wilderness for nearly a month now, destitute, hungry and ragged, a man without a home or a name. Hated! Despised! Rejected! Exiled! Even my faithful man-servant Standish, who has been my sole companion and wheel-chair-puller during my arduous exodus, is not above forsaking his wretched master. Once, as we huddled around the camp-fire, assessing our meagre rations, Standish broke down and, in a manner quite unlike him, tearfully admitted that, on the day previous, he imagined me to be a chicken, albeit an old and desiccated chicken, and attempted to slaughter me with a hatchet as I slept. But a sudden wave of conscience over-took him, and he let the hatchet drop. I was shocked by Standish's display of emotion but decided to show him mercy. "You have been through hell and back, as have I," I said. "I will let you off easy with a mere 7 percent reduction in your wages. But don't think I shall ever forget your thoughts of betrayal, you murderous turn-coat!" We sojourned for days across the Great Eastern Range, buzzards flying over-head. Almost out of the staples given to us by the Boy-Scouts, we believed our-selves finally done for. Finding our-selves near the top of a ridge, I commanded Standish to hollow out my grave in the hard dirt, after which he could crawl some-where into the brush and expire quietly. But before I could finish, Standish leapt up and gesticulated wildly at an area beyond the ridge. "A town, sir, a town!" he exclaimed. "A fat lot of good that does us," I said. "That jerk-water burg is probably oozing with constables, ready to clap us into irons on sight." "It is better than death, sir," Standish said. "And it seems to feature considerable amenities. From here I can spot a motor-court and a used-car proprietor-ship. And look—a Burger-King franchise!" Burger-King? Where had I heard this name before? Then I remembered: He is the famed plenipotentiary of meat, much beloved across the Republic. I ordered Standish to fetch me the amplified-sight glasses so that I could get a better look at this town. Sure enough, the Burger-King's embassy lay right in the town thorough-fare, beckoning all with its enormous, shiny, revolving coat-of-arms. It took hours, but we finally made our way to the center of the town. We entered the Burger-King embassy, and I threw my-self at the feet of the courtiers and diplomats in-side, begging for political asylum and a possible audience with the great and benevolent Burger-King.