Aug 192019

The attendee at my regular consultation with the International Finance and Foreign Exchange Attaché of the Embassy of Denmark on Friday was replaced with a last-minute substitute – Dr. Arnapalaaq Iteq Ikiaqutit, the Cultural, Legal and Political Affairs Deputy at the embassy’s Greenland Section. She was visibly upset as she situated herself on the chair directly to the right of my desk and leaned in. “Mr. Collins,” she confided, “I don’t mind telling you I’m very, very concerned about your President Trump.” “Well, don’t let that bother you,” I replied. “There are at least one hundred and fifty million Americans who feel precisely the same way.” “Has he gone mad?” she implored. “Gone mad?” I responded. “Why no, he hasn’t […]

Jul 282019

I had consultations running right up to seven o’clock on Friday, so I stopped by the Round Robin Bar after work. There, at a table by himself, sat Hymen Steinstien, one of several principal staffers to Representative Jerrold Nadler, Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee. Despite the fact that Steinstien’s usual annual alcohol intake typically comprises three thimbles of strictly kosher Mogen David ceremonial wine during Passover, on that table stood two empty martini glasses. That in itself was extraordinary at the Round Robin, where the waitstaff are famous for quickly gathering empty drink glasses from tables, routinely within minutes of when they are finished. So all the signs were there – poor Steinstien was working so hard on getting […]

Jun 292019

Someone calling herself “Alexa,” and claiming to represent “a major Democratic presidential candidate” started calling the office starting in the middle of last week, asking for one of my free initial consultations. I’ve been extremely busy lately, and there really weren’t any openings in my schedule, so I kept putting them off. I have to admit, however, that their persistence finally triumphed, as Gretchen got tired of this person calling three or four times a day and told me, “Either you stop giving free initial consultations, accept requests within three days of the first call, accept requests after ten attempts to get one, or find yourself another private secretary.” I’m sure she wasn’t serious about that last part, but nobody […]

May 222019

Arrogance in full bloom bears a crop of ruinous folly – Aeschylus, The Persians 472 BC My 3:00 PM consultation this afternoon was with Haroom Zade Kooni-goh Ahmagh, president of the Iranian Patriots Society, a neoconservative group composed mostly of wealthy Iranian expatriates and headquartered in Los Angeles, California. He is in Washington this week on one of his regular trips here to lobby for the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran, also known as the Mojahedin-e Khalq, the MEK, the MKO or the PMOI. Since I knew he was coming, I had my private security contractor sweep my office for surveillance devices twice, once at 6:00 AM and again at 2:30 PM. Due to the nature of my business, I […]

Apr 222019

I was booked solid from six to six today, with only a half hour for lunch at my desk, but Gretchen’s patient attempts at explaining that to the persistent caller who identified himself as “David Barron from the White House staff” did no good. “You haven’t had a single consultation from anyone at the White House since Obama left,” Gretchen remarked as she notified me about Mr. Barron’s fifth call since nine-thirty. “How come they waited nearly two and a half years?” An intriguing point, to be sure – Caller ID confirmed the call originated from the White House, though, so I told Gretchen to let Mr. Barron know I would take his call during lunch. If he was so […]