Artwork: IKI '26


Author: SAB FOD
As seen in: The Quixotic #

Greetings, assembled cabinet ministers of the Soviet Union. I have a confession to make. I am not actually Dmitri, the clumsy yet lovable head of security of the Kyrgyz SSR. I am Jeff, national head of the Union of Undercover CIA Operatives in the Kremlin, and we demand a raise.

This protest is not meant for you all but rather my boss back home, who is listening through the bug I planted years ago in the ceiling fan. Please act as though I’m not here and resume your meeting, but I will have to remain standing on top of this table so that the mic picks up my voice.

Dear Langley, over the past two decades we have prevented multiple extinction-level nuclear wars between the U.S. and the U.S.S.R, despite receiving no additional compensation. As a result, most CIA operatives in the Kremlin are financially struggling. The rest are dead.

I have worn many hats during my time in Russia, but it is fair to say that I spend every waking moment of my life in fear that it’s the last one. Then when I’m sleeping, I enter a trance state where my life flashes before my eyes in a perpetual loop, a reel of my successes and failures. My mother and father stand at my grave, shaking their heads in disappointment. Despite my accomplishments, they are not proud of me, and I learn that I will forever be a stain on the family legacy. It’s normally around this point in the dream that I wake up, screaming and questioning my entire existence. In light of that, I think it’s fair to say that $10.50 an hour isn’t really cutting it.

Other times I just lay there in the Kremlin air ducts for 16 hours a day making little tip-tap noises along the walls so they think they have rodents to bankrupt them with pest extermination costs. And then when they bring in the pest exterminators I have to squeal like a dying rat and inhale toxic fumes and then the next day when I’m back undercover as the chief economic minister for Kyrgyzstan I have to try not to cough when outlining our next five year plan. And all the other economic ministers look at each other like, who’s this guy and why does he keep coughing.

Anyway, the Russians are now dragging me away to the execution chamber, but I hope this touched the hearts of everyone back home. I will not rest until—(he is no longer in range of the bug’s mic).