Celebrated playwright James Sherman is author of a hilarious "Hu's on First?" sketch that he penned dripping wet this week after the Communist Party chose Chinese Vice President Hu Jintao as its new general secretary.
     A member of the
Victory Gardens' Theater Playwrights Ensemble in Chicago, Mr. Sherman, with due credit to Abbott & Costello, tells Inside the Beltway the idea splashed into his head while showering Monday.
     "I raced to the computer and knocked it out," reveals Mr. Sherman, who actually arrives in
Washington today to discuss his long-running theater production, "The God of Isaac." Without further ado, "Hu's on First?"
     (We take you now to the Oval Office)
     George: Condi! Nice to see you. What's happening?
     Condi: Sir, I have the report here about the new leader of
China.
     George: Great. Lay it on me.
     Condi: Hu is the new leader of
China.
     George: That's what I want to know.
     Condi: That's what I'm telling you.
     George: That's what I'm asking you. Who is the new leader of
China?
     Condi: Yes.
     George: I mean the fellow's name.
     Condi: Hu.
     George: The guy in
China.
     Condi: Hu.
     George: The new leader of
China.
     Condi: Hu.
     George: The Chinaman!
     Condi: Hu is leading
China.
     George: Now whaddya' asking me for?
     Condi: I'm telling you Hu is leading
China.
     George: Well, I'm asking you. Who is leading
China?
     Condi: That's the man's name.
     George: That's who's name?
     Condi: Yes.
     George: Will you or will you not tell me the name of the new leader of
China?
     Condi: Yes, sir.
     George: Yasser? Yasser Arafat is in
China? I thought he was in the Middle East.
     Condi: That's correct.
     George: Then who is in
China?
     Condi: Yes, sir.
     George: Yasser is in
China?
     Condi: No, sir.
     George: Then who is?
     Condi: Yes, sir.
     George: Yasser?
     Condi: No, sir.
     George: Look, Condi. I need to know the name of the new leader of
China. Get me the secretary-general of the U.N. on the phone.
     Condi: Kofi?
     George: No, thanks.
     Condi: You want Kofi?
     George: No.
     Condi: You don't want Kofi.
     George: No. But now that you mention it, I could use a glass of milk. And then get me the U.N.
     Condi: Yes, sir.
     George: Not Yasser! The guy at the U.N.
     Condi: Kofi?
     George: Milk! Will you please make the call?
     Condi: And call who?
     George: Who is the guy at the U.N.?
     Condi: Hu is the guy in
China.
     George: Will you stay out of
China?!
     Condi: Yes, sir.
     George: And stay out of the
Middle East! Just get me the guy at the U.N.
     Condi: Kofi.
     George: All right! With cream and two sugars. Now get on the phone.
     (Condi picks up the phone)
     Condi: Rice, here.
     George: Rice? Good idea. And a couple of egg rolls, too. Maybe we should send some to the guy in
China. And the Middle East. Can you get Chinese food in the Middle East?