Fredericton — Premier Brian Gallant called a public announcement in Officers’ Square this morning to address the flooding in the city.
In a short release issued just hours before the announcement, he claimed to have found the true source of the flooding, and stated that steps were being taken to remedy the situation.
A beleaguered and dissatisfied crowd quickly formed in the square to hear the announcement, despite the water rising to the level of their shins.
For once, Gallant arrived promptly — climbing onto the stage wearing purple water wings, orange flippers, and swim trunks emblazoned with SpongeBob SquarePants’ smiling face. He approached the podium to deliver his opening remarks.
“Check, check,” he began, tapping the mic and grinning nervously. “Um, hi everyone! Nice weather we had this weekend, huh?”
The crowd was silent. A young girl played a cricket noise on her phone to punctuate the point.
“Right,” he continued. “I’ve called this announcement to let everyone know that we have found the source of the flooding.”
More impatient silence from the crowd. The premier scratched his forehead and looked at the ground.
“…So?” asked one woman, finally.
“OK, OK, fine,” he said, flinching. “It came from my backyard…from my wading pool.”
The crowd instantly began to cry out in disdain, violently cursing the premier.
“Listen, it felt like summer last week,” he hurriedly explained. “So I got excited and decided to set up the pool. Then, I just, y’know…left the hose running a little too long.”
“How in the hell do you forget to turn off a hose?” a deep voice yelled from the crowd, cutting through the noise.
“Well,” said Gallant, anxiously clearing his throat. “I, uh…I fell asleep.”
There were loud groans from the audience.
“Look, I’m sorry, but that’s the truth,” he said, raising his hands submissively. “I fell asleep, and didn’t wake up until a half-hour later when the microwave alarm went off. My meatloaf defrosted, so, naturally, I went in to eat it. After that…well, after that Coronation Street was on, and, as I’m sure you know, these past couple episodes have made for essential viewing, since–”
A soggy boot whizzed past his head.
“Hey. Hey! Enough of that!” cried Deputy Premier Stephen Horsman, standing in front of the cowering Gallant. “Look, the premier made a stupid mistake. But who among us can claim that they haven’t? I say, let he who has not done something dumb in their life, cast the first wet shoe.”
The crowd muttered in ashamed agreement.
“All right,” he continued, relaxing a bit. “Now that we know the source of the problem, we can begin to correct it…Brian, how long was the hose left on for?”
“What do you mean?”
“The hose,” repeated Horsman, looking at him quizzically. “When did you turn it off?”
“Turn it…off?” the premier said, his eyes widening. “Oh fuck.”
Suddenly, he turned from the podium and took off in the direction of his house, his flippers smacking the water as he ran.