This Working Man’s Fake

Todd Perry

(The following piece is a work of fiction that was written and originally performed by Suzy’s husband George Andrews, Suzy’s former publicist Arthur Jefferson, and Suzy’s longtime political nemesis Fred Camden, with George playing the role of Pierre Babineaux Jr., Arthur playing the role of Marshall Bobs Jr., and Fred playing the role of Suzy.)

by Suzy Andrews

The social club that launched Big Social Media was designed to remain secret forever, but that plan became unworkable after Donald Trump got involved.

Here are the facts:

“Why don’t we get Marshall Bobs on the call too,” suggested Pierre, one bright day in June 2015.

“Sounds good,” I deadpanned, while gazing at the San Francisco bay.

“Hey,” said Marshall, after Pierre merged the calls.

Pierre wanted Marshall and I to help him “ninja” the transportation bill that was winding its way through Congress.

“Suzy, do you know what Pierre means by ninja-ing the bill?” asked Marshall.

“Yeah, that’s a George method,” I replied.

“No. It’s where you use a shell company to plant a bunch of stories that shift the news cycle and set the agenda in Washington,” explained Marshall.

“Maybe we should call it a Pierre Babineaux method,” interjected Pierre.

“Resolved. We will Pierre Babineaux the bill,” I joked.

The phone call gained steam, but the transportation bill died.

As with many revolutionary innovations, multiple people came up with the same idea at the same time.

Donald Trump competed with us to manipulate the media during the summer of 2015, but instead of concealing his intentions behind a veil of shell companies, he built a wall, brick by brick, by, “Acting like a simple-minded bigot,” as Pierre put it, when he, Marshall and I met in a dark alley a few weeks later.

“Are we supposed to practice acting like we don’t like Trump? Is that why you called this meeting?” I asked.

“Yeah, practice makes perfect. We have to practice dissing Trump at all times,” he said, deflecting.

“Why?” I ventured.

“He’s a clown car that needs repairs,” said Marshall.

“Trump is not just funny. He’s better than I thought any one person could ever be at baiting the media. He’s smart, but the media committed 100% to saying he’s dumb, so now they can’t explain what he’s doing without confessing that they were lying, and once they confess, they won’t be able to work in media anymore, and then a lot of them will literally die,” said Pierre, steering.

“Hahaha,” laughed Marshall and I in unison.

“Dude, these media people…, have you read their private messages to each other?” shouted Pierre.

“Not lately, shhh…” said Marshall, who seemed to take Pierre’s comment as an insult.

“Pierre, the captain’s password only works on your account,” I offered, hoping to ease the tension.

“Jeff is leaving Big Social,” said Pierre, changing the subject.

“Everyone knows. He wrote a cryptic message on his profile,” said Marshall, trying not to laugh.

“Really? Let me see,” said Pierre, reaching to grab my phone.

“Please don’t write any aggressive comments on my behalf,” I warned.

“Wow, people seriously don’t realize I’m the one who’s using your account to write all those aggressive comments, do they? Everyone must think you’re a horrible person,” fibbed Pierre, and we all laughed like it was 2005.

For context, the original deal, which we had certified in 2005 over a red wine from Jeff’s private collection, was that Pierre would send me one billion dollars, “as soon as humanly possible,” but ten years had passed, and we still hadn’t closed.

“You’re never going to send the wire, are you?” I chanced, after we finished laughing.

“Just move back to North Carolina and lower your cost of living,” Pierre asserted, his face going blank.

I did that, and the work of our social club continued without disruption.

Marshall and Pierre followed suit and showed up two months later at the inn, which was walking distance from the apartment I found near campus, and they pretended to be graduate students.

Pierre got a fake moustache, and nobody made us.

“Reparations,” said Pierre, as we smoked a joint underneath a sprawling tree by the library.

“You should create a billion dollar reparations fund, and we’ll give Suzy the credit,” said Marshall, staring at Pierre’s eyes.

“Get Tom to make it look like I had control of the money before I gave it away, and I’ll say I made the choice to live in poverty in order to raise awareness about the need for corporate America to follow through on paying reparations,” I said, piling on.

“Why can’t we just send you a billion dollars and trust you to give it all away?” poked Marshall, while I pretended to have no awareness that he was speaking.

“Reparations for who?” asked Pierre, more distantly than before, as if we were just hearing an echo of his voice from the past.

An intense silence followed, and there was nothing but the sound of crickets.

We terminated the meeting by saying the word, “sociopath.”

I made preparations to live as a hermit in an armored bunker, but the rise of Trumpism had breathed new life into our conversation, and Pierre kept calling.

The last cultural event that had arranged the stars along these lines was the Occupy movement of summer 2011, so we had our next meeting in Zuccotti park, downtown New York.

Pierre opened the meeting by calling me a Bernie bro.

Drum roll.

And then tech journalist Arthur Jefferson walked into view, as if making a cameo appearance!

Yay!

Arthur looked even more surprised than us, so we had to roll with the idea that it was a coincidence.

Marshall used the popped collar of his trench coat to hide his face while walking away briskly, but I had to start yelling at Pierre, as though I was a deranged Bernie bro who was harassing Pierre Babineaux in the public square.

Arthur prevented me from getting closer to Pierre, and the security detail girded into action.

My body went limp when they asked me why I was acting like a guy and causing trouble, and I mumbled, “I was hoping to tell the chairman why I’ve become a supporter of Bernie Sanders. It won’t happen again.”

Trump won the election and we met at the W hotel in Atlanta, so that Pierre could start making things happen.

Our fake shouting match in Zuccotti park had become reality, and Pierre was power tripping.

I used the domain sharkinjury.com to distribute a 20-page missive of facts about us while Marshall studied strategies for containing the Ebola virus.

The old normal was engineered to become the new normal, but Marshall became embroiled in regional politics and dropped off the grid so thoroughly that Pierre and I grabbed dinner and hashed out what would happen if one of us were to die.

We also instantiated a new data repository, and we made a bet that my favorite public monument would come down within a year.

And then the King Graph scandal happened.

Pierre entered the coliseum of media and publishing while Marshall returned to private life and bought a beach house that washed away into the sea at exactly the same hour of the day in 2018 when Pierre gave his opening remarks to the press.

The monument in question fell like clockwork whilst my body landed in NYC like a cannon ball and bounced into an exclusive luncheon at the legal study of the Beyond the Pale University Club.

It featured monologues about economic theory from Jack Dorsey, Sarah Jessica Parker, David Brooks, Greg Gutfeld, plus five people who claimed to be Satoshi Nakamoto.

We neglected to create roles in the new iteration for George Soros and the papers, but that doesn’t mean we didn’t have a hand in authoring the blockbuster story they ran after the 2018 midterms.

After the dust settled, Pierre was still running things in Menlo Park, and I was in a new locale.

Everyone felt that Pierre wanted to stage a LeftSmiler retreat that would lead to recognition of the fact that his BS had caused generational harm for no reason other than to help random people get rich.

“How will the story end?” I asked, after Pierre made his opening pitch.

“We’ll create a seven million seven hundred and seventy seven thousand and seven hundred and seventy seven dollar fund in honor of our victims,” insisted Pierre, sarcastically.

“Sounds good, but won’t the hoi polloi object? They’re not going to take this lying down like they did in the old days,” I added.

“Haven’t you heard the good news? Todd confessed to writing SharkInjury, so all we have to do is lie on the record in order to frame him as a guy who lied on the record.”

“Who is Todd?” I asked, sensing opportunity.

“Whoever you want him to be,” replied Pierre, condescendingly.

“Ok, so we build a new apparatus for continuously framing Todd Perry, and the rest will get in line.”

“That’s how it works around here, Suzy. Nice to have you back in California.”

“But I’m in New York now, Pierre!” I spoofed.

“So get out here and let’s do that cleansing retreat you’ve been talking about participating in nonstop,” we agreed.

I waited a week, and the rest is history.

Pierre’s plan worked, and the money will be available on September 3rd.

That’s $7,777,777 (seven sevens with a dollar sign in front) to be exact.

I’ve been given sole discretion over who to send it to and why.

According to the contract, the only rule is that, “I can’t keep it or spend it primarily on myself.”

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