Editor's note: This column is a fictitious, satirical piece that should be read like a theatrical screenplay.
Scene: The room is dimly lit by a few heavily shaded lamps and a raging fire glowing red in an immense stone hearth topped by an elaborate chimney stack. Three comfy leather chairs form a semicircle facing the flames that periodically crackle and sizzle foreshadowing the possibly volatile discussion to follow.
Russian President Vladimir Putin, sporting a heavily woven, musculature exposing sweater, is the host. On one side of him sits Iran’s Supreme Leader, the Grand Ayatollah Sayyid Ali Hosseini Khamenei, who balks at wearing the modern “labbadeh” preferred by the more stylish religious men of Iran. He instead opts for the simple Kabaa. Kim Jung Un, supreme leader of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, occupies the third chair looking every bit the round-faced youngster in what could be mistaken for black pajamas. The pajamas don’t have attached feet. He is instead wearing the Nikes given to him by Dennis Rodman.
Vlad addresses his guests, "Vodka, gentlemen?"
Aya, looking disgusted: No alcohol for me. Apple juice maybe?
Un: Suja for me.
Vlad: As you both wish, but Un, how can you drink that distilled ethanol and water?
Un: It’s our national drink … good, too.
Vlad: Aya, can’t I talk you into Stolichnaya Elit. It will warm your soul.
Un interrupts: Bah, no Seoul, bad Seoul!
Aya to Vlad, ignoring Un: Apple juice. I don’t get it in my country.
All three settle in with their drinks.
Vlad to Un: Too bad you didn’t get your nuclear range increased to hit California in time, or Donny would have won the popular vote too.
Un, in his own world, mumbles: I gotta get some of these chairs!
He shifts to put his feet under him in the large seat.
The two other men ignore him.
Vlad: So, Donny is president.
Vlad turns to Aya: You got sanctions lifted; any advice for my country?
Aya: Tillerson used subsidiaries to bypass some of our sanctions ... Oh, and agree to anything for 10 years, then be sneakier about what you are doing in the meantime.
Un: I want sanctions.
Both men look at him in amazement.
Vlad, as if addressing a child: You must first have trade with the U.S. before sanctions are possible.
Aya turns to Un, nodding his agreement with Vlad. Un looks a bit bewildered.
Vlad sits back and downs a glass of vodka as he and Aya go on ignoring Un.
Vlad to Aya: So, you’re still working on getting nukes?
Un interrupts: Oooh, Oooh, I got nukes!
Aya smiles, addressing Vlad once more: Since you are now an asset to Trump, maybe you can help with our nuclear ambitions.
Vlad smiles at him.
Un: I wanna be an asset.
They continue to ignore him.
Vlad: We’ll see … How about the brouhaha over fake news?
Shaking his head: Only in America!
Aya to Vlad: Do you actually have blackmail tapes of Trump?
Un: I wanna watch video tapes!
With a Cheshire-cat grin, Vlad drinks another glass of vodka.
Aya waves his hand dismissively: He should just shut down the press.
Vlad: Or simply eliminate those who don’t agree with him.
UN, suddenly engaged again: Everyone has loud speakers in homes and workplaces, and I broadcast daily on the great accomplishments of my country — the greatest country in the world!
Vlad downs another glass of vodka, and Aya sips his apple juice. Un looks around the room, detached again.
Scene change: The Trump bedroom the Friday night after the inauguration. Melania is brushing her hair looking at her husband’s reflection in the vanity mirror.
Melania, smiling: So, Mr. President, how do you feel?
President Trump: Fantastic! Now that I have everyone off balance, parsing every word I say, wondering what I really mean, I can make America great again!