Certain individuals leave the scene rapidly, at the speed of gravity.
Others take their time, leaving wearily in dribs and drabs, with their tail between their legs like a scolded dog.
It must be strange for George W Bush to find so many nice folk—often former friends—having trouble hiding their joy abut his imminent departure. Yesterday, at the climate talks in Poland, Brice Lalonde of France told a joke:
A man drops in at the White House and asks to see Bush. "He doesn't live here any more," says the doorman. The next day, and the day after, the fellow returns to the White House and asks the same question, receiving the same answer. On the fourth day, the exasperated doorman says: "I've told you several times already. President Bush is no longer here." The visitor flashes a contented grin. "I know he has gone. But it makes me so happy to hear you say that."
BREAKING NEWS: In Baghdad, Bush got booted. In a surprisingly expert style, the president ducked two leather projectiles launched, one after the other, in an equally sporting fashion, by a 28-year-old Iraqi journalist named Muntader al-Zaidi.
Verbal message (in Arabic) accompanying the first shoe: "This is a gift from the Iraqis. This is the farewell kiss, you dog!"
Verbal message accompanying the second shoe: "This is from the widows, the orphans and those who were killed in Iraq!"