The truth is out there

Goddammit. I post a righteous <a href=””>rant</a> about the world thinking Americans are all insane and then half an hour later the entire United States goes stark raving birther-mad just to prove me correct.

Anyway, it was the 5th of August 1961.

Keith and I had been in Nairobi undermining the more moderate sections of the Kenyan independence movement because Jack Kennedy wanted to piss off the British. It didn’t take much work in those days – either to undermine the more moderate sections of African politics or to piss off the British. Death of Empire and all that.

We’d had a very successful couple of weeks, but it finally came time for us to leave. This pleased me no end, not least because Nairobi was a pustular, pestilent shit-hole that even the Brits didn’t want. Dust, dirt, disease and not a decent bar in the entire place.

We arrived at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport mid morning. Well, it was called an international airport but frankly it was just a room with one desk with two angry black men behind it which served for both ticket sales and check in. There was a goat tied near the door which they used to hitch to a cart for moving the luggage to the plane.

We lined up next to the goat to check in. I immediately noticed the young couple at the desk in front of us because they were a mixed race couple – he was black and she was white – which was still quite unusual at that time. He was trying to book airline tickets all the way through to Hawaii, which was causing untold confusion, while she was fussing over the most adorable tiny brown baby. It had huge ears, but a lovely smile. She kept calling the baby Barack, which I remember because I thought it an odd name.

They finally sorted out their tickets and we checked in, and about an hour later we were all on our way to Heathrow via Cairo on the most terrifying plane in which I have ever traveled. I suspect they’d borrowed the airport goat to power the engines, and it was tired that day and was barely keeping the plane in the sky.

We were seated across from the couple. Keith had already fallen asleep, so I slipped on my sunglasses and pretended to be asleep myself and then listened in to their conversation to keep from being bored. She was called Ann and he seemed to be called Barack, just like the baby. She was holding the sleeping baby in her arms facing towards me. The young couple were whispering to each other about the “plan”. She seemed quite nervous, while he was acting bluff and unconcerned.

It all seemed very suspicious.

After about half an hour, Barack Sr looked around and appeared to satisfy himself that no-one was looking. He reached into his briefcase and pulled out a blank form which I could see was headed “Certificate of Live Birth”, along with a miniature typewriter, and proceeded to fill in the form. When he was finished he had Ann sign the form, and then he signed it twice at the bottom, clearly using different handwriting each time, then put everything away in his briefcase.

A stewardess came up the aisle and spoke to Barack Sr. At that moment, the baby woke up and opened his eyes and both the stewardess and I could see that they were yellow and had thin pupils just like a lizard. The baby stuck out its tongue, which was long and thin and pinkish-purple and which flicked up and licked across both of the baby’s eyes and then was slurped back into its mouth.

Of course, the stewardess screamed like Tippi Hedren at a poultry farm, which woke up the entire plane. Keith leapt to his feet but I carefully remained “asleep”.  Ann shrieked and clutched at the baby. Barack Sr fumbled in his bag and jumped up brandishing a weapon. It was long and silver and had flashing lights all over it. He aimed it at Keith and pressed the trigger. A long beam of red light flashed out and into Keith’s eyes. Keith froze immediately. Barack Sr then used the weapon on everyone else in the plane who was awake (except Ann and the baby, of course) and they were all immobilized as well.

I threw in a few fake snores for good measure and kept watching.

Barack Sr reached up and peeled off his face to reveal a lizard head – bright green scaly skin with vibrant yellow eyes. He took a deep breath like he’d just surfaced from the water, then began to rant like Glenn Beck with an amyl headache. He went on and on for at least twenty minutes about how nothing would interfere with their plan, how the lizard people would rise up from their oppression and conquer the greatest nation in the world and then the entire planet, how little Barry was the true hope of lizard-kind. All the while Ann and the baby chuckled evilly. After a while, he wound down, and sat back in his seat. Ann patted his hand and he put his human face mask back on.

About five minutes later Keith started to move. He shook his head as if to clear it, then looked around as if wondering what he was doing. He sat down and grabbed me by the shoulder to wake me up. Soon everyone else was waking up too. Keith had no idea what had happened. I played dumb, and all the while Barack and Ann sat there grinning like Newt Gingrich at a bridal fair, making faces at the baby and cooing.

When we got back to the US I reported everything but, of course, no one believed me.

It wasn’t until 1997 I saw little Barry the lizard baby again. It was a news report on the Illinois senate election, and I recognized those ears immediately.

Of course, now it’s far too late to do anything. The day will come and I, for one, will welcome our new lizard overlords.

At least then we will be able to stop talking about fucking birth certificates.

[Cross posted at <a href=””>Sarah, Proud and Tall</a>. Original post edited slightly for clarity.]

In other news, I will be vaguely live-blogging the royal wedding here on Balloon Juice direct from Westminster Abbey, commencing at about 10am London time (5am New York time) on Friday.

If any of you are silly enough to be up at that time and to give a flying crap about the <a href=””>family affairs of an inbred bunch of horse-faced Germans</a>, I hope you will join me.

44 replies
  1. 1

    I wasn’t planning on watching the wedding, but if you’re live blogging I might have to set an alarm.

  2. 2
    fhtagn says:

    I have one question:


    Please, don’t keep us in suspense any longer.

  3. 3
    Josie says:

    It will be the highlight of my day–your comments, you understand, not the wedding. Thanks for the laugh.

  4. 4
    Emma says:

    Perfect. Oh perfect. Can we push the meme?

  5. 5
    El Cid says:

    The more moderate sections of the Kenyan anti-colonial actors were pretty capable of understanding that British reaction was to go ahead and keep taking away all of the best arable lands in the hills where the Kikuyu didn’t have many other ways to get by.

    So you have to admit you had a lot of help from the British colonists and their colonial rulers in terms of undermining those moderates.

  6. 6
    EconWatcher says:

    SPaT, I’m a fan. But I must say this falls short of the high standards you’ve set for yourself.

    But then again, after describing Cole as a young Sean Connery with a hint of William Howard Taft at the edges, where could you go but down?

  7. 7
  8. 8
    Warren Terra says:

    Whatever happened to the thousand-year truce??

  9. 9

    Ms. Sarah. I fucking adore you. Please keep this news entre nous as I would hate to see you destroyed by the lizard people. And, I am very glad you will be live-blogging the royal wedding.

    And, speaking of birtherism and the royal wedding, I finished my piece on this whole fiasco (birferism, not the royal wedding, but I mention the royal wedding in the piece).

  10. 10


    I’m tired and emotional, dear. It’s hard being perfect all the time.

  11. 11
    Warren Terra says:

    Also, what is the connection between these amazing revelations and the famous vote for the Lizard People in the 2008 Minnesota Senate Race? Was that a warning? A misplaced, and inappropriately revealing, vote for Obama? A deliberate distraction from the true Lizard People candidate?

  12. 12
    JPL says:

    Sarah, No wonder why the President of the greatest country in the world was snubbed by the royalty.

  13. 13
    Der Imp says:

    Perhaps someone should formally introduce EconWatcher to the Marquis de Satire, with the caveat that she can be a harsh mistress.

  14. 14
    MonkeyBoy says:

    As I’ve said before, the Obamas are black lectroids while most of the Bush administration were red lectroids.

    this documentary shows their prior tactic of registering social security numbers. They got much wiser after that and didn’t give their members all the first name “John” and have them born in the same place.

  15. 15
    jeff says:

    Ok, the spiel works in this context, and should be ideal for the big wedding. Thanks.

  16. 16
    rea says:

    I have one question:


    Jane Galt’s twin, of course.

  17. 17
    WaterGirl says:

    @asiangrrlMN: I LOVE what you wrote. I hope one of our front pagers thinks about posting the whole thing in its own thread.

  18. 18


    since, by watching the thing live, you’re as close to an expert on the british royal family as i ever want to meet;

    when did don imus get a gig standing next to prince charles? are they dating? does the media call them primus, and does les claypool threaten to sue? not all that inquiring minds want to know.

  19. 19

    @WaterGirl: Thanks. I’m still pretty pissed off, but I forced myself to stop. I’m trying to write shorter posts. ::Snort::

  20. 20
    stuckinred says:

    Lawrence is deep up in NBC’s ass. You don’t like him because he’s arrogant? He is not fucking around and it could cost him his job.

  21. 21
    Origuy says:

    The whole line, from the Tudors on, is a bunch of upstarts anyway. Tony Robinson did a show a few years ago called Britain’s Real Monarch, where he showed that Edward IV was illegitimate, since his father the Duke of York was in France when Edward would have been conceived. (No birth certificates in those days!) Therefore, the rightful heir was George, Duke of Clarence, (Brush up your Shakespeare!) whose direct descendant is a rice farmer named Mike in New South Wales.

  22. 22
    JGabriel says:


    It opened its eyes and both the stewardess and I could see that its eyes were yellow and had thin pupils just like a lizard. It stuck out its tongue and it was long and thin and pinkish-purple and it flicked up and licked across both eyes and then was slurped back into the baby’s mouth.

    Pronoun Ambiguity Alert: Whose eyes did he lick, his own or the stewardess’s?


  23. 23
    lamh34 says:

    @stuckinred: I just watched that! I think I need a cigarette.

    Lawrence O went all in and all HARD! He basically rode NBC, Donald Trump and his fellow journos hard, rough and raw.

    It was very satisfying!

  24. 24
    serge says:

    Miss Sarah, you might want to aim your hansom cabbie to Westminster Abbey, not Cathedral…not that I give a shit about who’re getting benuptialed.

  25. 25


    Thankyou, dear. I edited. That’s what I get for posting while drunk.

  26. 26


    Westminster Abbey

    Dammit. I really have been in this country too long.

  27. 27
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Origuy:Edward IV’s illegitimacy is a smear on the part of the Tudors. The Tudors had legitimacy issues of their own and were looking to quash any Yorkist candidates from popping up. Hell, the Lancastrian line usurped the throne anyway. Yeah, I am a Yorkist; sue me.

  28. 28
    Lolis says:

    Now this is funny. The mystery of the Lizard People is finally solved!!!

  29. 29
    fhtagn says:


    So, Megan McArdle with a shaven chin then?

  30. 30
    fhtagn says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    You know perfectly well that Edward IV never released his long-form birth certificate!

  31. 31
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @fhtagn: Malmsey-bagger!

  32. 32
    Tehanu says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    And per John M. Ford they were all vampires anyway.


    You believed Baldric’s historical research? I thought it was all part of his cunning plan to get Edmund back on the throne.

  33. 33
    g says:

    Of course, the Royal Family are all metalloid lizards, too, so it will be a lovely wedding.

  34. 34
    Corner Stone says:


  35. 35

    @Corner Stone:

    I love you too, Mr Grumpypants.

  36. 36
    fhtagn says:

    @Sarah Proud and Tall:

    Stone might just be issuing an autobiographical statement. It would be irresponsible not to speculate.

  37. 37
    brettvk says:

    Of course, the stewardess screamed like Tippi Hedren at a poultry farm

    I just needed to see that again.

  38. 38
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    the stewardess screamed like Tippi Hedren at a poultry farm,

    While the “young Sean Connery” line is the standard that will never, ever be topped, this is pretty close.

    The poor cat. Startled out of a sound sleep, again.

  39. 39
    Villago Delenda Est says:


    Oh, posh.

    Tony Robinson is a dogsbody.

  40. 40

    Ah! The eyes! That explains the teleprompters! It’s because of the eyes!

  41. 41
    Paul in KY says:

    Pretty good, but no ‘Jomo Kenyatta’ airport in 1961. Could be wrong, but the British wouldn’t have been naming airports after him.

  42. 42
    Paul in KY says:

    @Origuy: Doesn’t hold water, old boy. The current royal house was imported from Germany, post Cromwell, etc. etc. Edward IV or his brother is from a line that ran out back in 15th century.

  43. 43
    Xenocrates says:

    Don’t blame me, I voted for Kodos!

  44. 44
    4jkb4ia says:

    Laughed by second paragraph.

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