The Adventures of Kevin Rudd: Eyeball Glasses

Kevin Rudd looked down at his desk.

Then up at the clock.

Then over to his fish-tank, where his pet goldfish, Goldy, was swimming with gay abandon.

He looked back up at the clock again. Twelve seconds had passed.

“Shit”, he muttered under his breath.

Sometimes Kevin wished he was Goldy. The world would be so much more interesting if he possessed Goldy’s 4 minute attention-span.
Sometimes Kevin locked the door of his prime-ministerial office, removed his jacket, and pretended to swim like Goldy, waving his fins, giggling as he floated around the room.
At least that helped waste half an hour or so.

“Time’s going sooo slooow”, Kevin complained as he slumped back in his chair, the back-rest pulling his business shirt up above his belly button.

“I wonder what Therese packed me for snack time?” He wondered aloud to himself, as he did so often.

Kevin took out his backpack and opened it up. Inside, his wife Therese Rein had left him an apple, a peanut-butter sandwich, and a Le Snack.

“Oh sweet! Le Snack!” Exclaimed Kevin, excitedly. However, just as he was about to peel off the foil lid, his office phone rang.

“Aw, c’mon!”

He answered the phone. It was Federal treasurer Wayne Swan.

“Hey Kevin,” said Wayne, “Today’s going sooo slooow.”
“I know, right?” replied Kevin.
Wayne continued, “I saw this funny video of a cat jumping into a box on Youtube, but then I accidentally closed Explorer and now I don’t know how to get it back again.”
“Hmm, that’s a melon-scratcher.” Said Kevin. After much thinking he concluded, “Nah, I don’t know, maybe your computer’s broke.”
“Just as I thought.” said Wayne. “Oh well, I’ll just have to buy yet another computer… this will be my 14th one since we took office.”
“I don’t get technology.” said Kevin, scratching his head with a miniature statuette of John Curtin.
“Yeh, tell me about it.”
Both men laughed heartily in agreement and Kevin hung up the phone.

He looked up at the clock again. It was 10am.

“I should have stayed in bed today”.

***

After a relaxing three hour break, Kevin felt refreshed and ready to take on the day’s events.

That was until he was reminded question time would be occurring at two o’clock.

Luckily for Kevin, he visited a novelty shop the day before, and found a pair of fake reading glasses with pictures of eyes on the lenses. He knew they’d come in handy at some point, but didn’t think it would be so soon.

“Maybe, if I wear these novelty glasses during question time, I’ll be able to take a nap, and no one would be the wiser”, he chuckled to himself.

“After all, I can’t be leader of a country and be tired at the same time. That would be unethical,” he continued, clearly forgetting he slept a solid ten hours the night before, and then another two hours during his morning break, and also a quick fifteen minute kip on the toilet just before question time.

Sure enough, at two o’clock, Kevin found himself in parliament, facing the prospect of question time. He looked quickly around the room, and, ducking under the desk, removed his regular glasses, and put on his new novelty specs clandestinely.

“Hey, Kevin, are they new glasses?” asked Julia Gillard.
This was the moment of truth.
“Why, yes Julia, do you like them?”
“They’re great. You look so alert and responsive.”
“Thanks”, said Kevin, pleased he’d fooled one of his closest political allies. “I’m just going to take it easy today, feel free not to ask me any questions, and just try not to make any noise in general.”

Kevin slipped his shoes off,  shifted in his seat until he found a comfortable position, and drifted off to sleep.

***

Kevin was having dinner with his wife, Therese.
Usually Therese cooked, but Kevin, perhaps feeling bad for sleeping all through question time and waking only to find the janitor mopping the floor around him at eight o’clock, told her he’d fix them both dinner for the night.

“I heard question time was interesting today.” she said pointedly, scooping another spoonful of baked beans from her can.
“Oh yes? How so?”
“They’re saying that instead of answering the opposition’s questions you just ignored them and stared intensely into the distance.”
Kevin swallowed, looking up from his can slowly. He decided to use his wit.
“It’s called playing the alpha male. My silence was my sincerest display of raw animal dominance.”
“I heard you were drooling uncontrollably, and mumbled incoherently at random points throughout the session.” Therese continued.
“Just keeping the bastards honest honey.” Kevin retorted, coolly.
“Apparently at one point you turned your head towards Joe Hockey and emitted a loud snoring noise for twenty minutes.”
“Again-“
Therese cut him off.
“You were asleep weren’t you, Kevin?”
“Alright, fine, I had a bit of a nap during question time, so what?”
“You’re Prime Minister of Australia. It’s not acceptable.”
Kevin looked down at his beans and poked them with his spoon ruefully.
“As punishment, I’m going to give you a long, boring lecture, and you’re going to sit in absolute silence and listen to me.” Therese demanded stoutly.
“Fine,” Kevin conceded. “But can I at least wear these new glasses I got today?”
Therese thought about it. “I don’t see why not.”

***

Kevin was riding his bike to work, smiling to himself. He got to catch up on some sleep in parliament, he got away with lying to his wife, and now-

Wait a minute.

When was that meeting with the Nairobian ambassador?

Was that today?

Kevin checked his blackberry. Yes, he was scheduled to meet the ambassador later that day.
“Naw, but that guy is sooo boooring.” Kevin complained to himself.

But then he smiled again, because he remembered his secret weapon.

***

The Nairobian ambassador was sitting in Kevin’s office waiting for him. Kevin’s plan was simple. He would talk to the ambassador for ten minutes or so about an important business deal that could get the Australian government millions of dollars, and then, when the ambassador started to talk to Kevin about his proposal, Kevin would casually switch glasses, and get a quick nap in. It almost seemed too perfect.

“I’m brilliant.” Kevin thought to himself confidently.

Kevin greeted the ambassador, and both men sat down.

“I’m sorry Prime Minister, my eyesight is getting terrible,” said the ambassador, “I’m just going to put my glasses on.”
“Go right ahead.” said Kevin reassuringly.

The ambassador put his glasses on.

“Wow, he really looks interested in what I have to say.” Kevin thought to himself with a false sense of security.

After Kevin finally finished his ten minute presentation, he motioned for the ambassador to begin his talk. Kevin quickly and covertly swapped his normal glasses for the fake ones. However, in his hurry to pull a fast one on the ambassador, Kevin had failed to realise that the ambassador himself was having a quite a nice nap as well. Kevin drifted blissfully off to sleep.

***

Needless to say, both Kevin and the ambassador were quite sheepish when they found out they were both preparing to sleep through each others presentations… especially since it wasn’t until Kevin’s assistant walked in the next morning at eight o’clock that they both actually woke up.

And some say that even to this day, during an especially boring parliament session, when Kevin Rudd appears distant and aloof, it’s because he’s just put on his secret eyeball glasses.

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