Good evening, and welcome to another session of Let’s Talk to Anyone with a Gizmo. I’m your host, Kathy Minicozzi. Our guests today are two of the most famous political figures in the world: Her Majesty Queen Cleopatra VII of Egypt and His Majesty Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte of France. Welcome.
CLEOPATRA: Thank you.
Let’s begin with you, Your Majesty.
CLEOPATRA: Call me Cleo.
Alright … Cleo. If you were to advise a beginning politician of today, what do you think is the most important thing you would say?
CLEOPATRA: Two things. Get rid of any siblings and give yourself to a powerful man.
You are talking about Julius Caesar, right?
CLEOPATRA: Who else? He had the power and I had … well, you know what I had. If you’ve got enough of it to take a smart, powerful man and turn him into a quivering mass of jelly who will give you anything you want, it’s stupid not to bring it out and flaunt it in his face.
You were in Rome when Caesar was assassinated, right?
CLEOPATRA: Oof! Yes. I wasn’t expecting that to happen. It was just supposed to be a nice, romantic interlude in Italy. I had to get away fast before someone came after ME. I went back to Egypt, where I was queen and people had to do what I told them. It was safer that way.
It certainly was, and we are glad you escaped. Your Majesty, Emperor Napoleon, what advice would you give to today’s inexperienced politicians?
NAPOLEON: Mon Dieu! What did she say about getting rid of siblings? No. You don’t do that. You build up an army, go into neighboring countries, conquer them and put your brothers on the thrones of those countries! Family is everything. It’s hard for a country to rebel if your brother is the king. You hear that, Joseph? Don’t say I never did anything for you!
NAPOLEON: And I was the most powerful man! I did not have to seduce anyone in power. Women fell all over ME!
Yes, well, I guess the Italian family tradition was strong in your case.
NAPOLEON: Are you crazy? What Italian tradition? I am French. Corsica was owned by France when I was born there, and it still is. Fifty million Frenchmen say that I am French, so it must be true.
NAPOLEON: Don’t forget that.
I won’t. Your Majesty … uh, Cleo … after the death of Caesar, you took up with Mark Anthony. What was the result of that?
CLEOPATRA: Well, I thought I had picked another winner, but I miscalculated. That’s one of the dangers of politics. You make what you think is a good decision, and you wind up behind the 8 ball. It happed to Marky and me. He killed himself, so I did it, too. I didn’t want to fall on a sword like he did. That would really hurt, and make a mess. We had some snakes around for an emergency, so I used one of them. Much easier.
Your Majesty the Emperor, you were eventually defeated in Russia, and you were finally, once and for all, defeated at Waterloo. What advice would you give?
NAPOLEON: Stay away from the Russians. They don’t mess around. That place is BIG and it gets really cold in winter. You have never seen such snow and ice. They don’t share their stuff with invading armies, either. Don’t expect them to welcome you with a nice bowl of borscht, unless they are trying to give you a bad case of stomach gas.
NAPOLEON: Be careful of the British, too. They’re tougher than they look. Wellington wasn’t just a pair of boots!
Well, our time seems to be up. Thank you, Queen Cleopatra and Emperor Napoleon, for your time and your expertise.
Please join us next week when we will feature some unknown but hilarious humor writers who need people to buy their books. Until then, good-bye.