MOUNT NEBO, JORDAN – Jordanian officials say they discovered American newsman Dan Rather wandering aimlessly in the desert wearing nothing but a blanket, purple Crocs and a Fez hat. Officials said when they approached Rather that he saluted and then apologized for not wearing a cowboy hat.
“He touched his head and then looked very confused. He said, ‘I would tip my Stetson if I had one on my head. I apologize.”
Officials said Rather then fell to his knees and began to recite what sounded like a news broadcast.
“Oh, it was definitely a newscast, but what time period it was from we have not yet discovered,” remarked a Jordanian soldier.
Dan Rather was reported missing last weekend by his wife. She told authorities that her husband had been in his den drinking beer and watching a Three’s Company marathon staring his favorite actress, Joyce Dewitt. His wife said she didn’t realize Mr. Rather was gone until three days later.
Officials say Rather had been asking villagers in this small Jordanian desert town for the “location of Walter.” When villagers did not respond, probably because of the language barrier, Dan Rather would yell, “Drink your big black cow and get out of here!”
“When we were transporting him to the American Consulate Mr. Rather said he was looking for Walter Becker of the musical group Steely Dan,” one official reported. “When we asked him why he was looking for Walter Becker in Jordan, he grimaced and said, ‘He’s a third world man.'”
The Daily Rash obtained a copy of the transcript of Dan Rather’s official questioning by American officials at the U.S. Consulate:
OFFICIAL: Why were you wandering the desert alone?
DAN RATHER: When the going gets weird, anchor men punt.
OFFICIAL: Would you care for a glass of water?
DAN RATHER: Much obliged. Tip of the Stetson to you. Things are getting hotter in here than a Times Square Rolex.
OFFICIAL: Mr. Rather, do you know anybody here in Jordan?
DAN RATHER: Don’t bet the trailer money on it yet!
OFFICIAL: What makes you think this Walter Becker is in Jordan?
DAN RATHER: Who is the Gaucho, Amigo?
OFFICIAL: Excuse me?
DAN RATHER: Why is he standing in your spangled leather poncho and your elevator shoes?
OFFICIAL: I don’t have a pancho.
DAN RATHER: You would sooner find a talking broccoli stick offering to mow your lawn for free, huh?
OFFICIAL: You don’t have any identification or money. Did you have a wallet?
DAN RATHER: If a frog had side pockets, he’d carry a hand gun. Yeah, you got the muscle, but I got the news.
OFFICIAL: We’re attempting to contact your wife.
DAN RATHER: She prays like a Roman with her eyes on fire!
OFFICIAL: Mr. Rather…
DAN RATHER: They got a name for the winners in the world, I want a name when I lose.
OFFICIAL: Why are you wandering the desert wrapped in a blanket?
DAN RATHER: I know a man with a motor launch for hire. A skinny man with two tone shoes.
OFFICIAL: I’m sorry, but those lyrics are from the Donald Fagen solo album, The Nightfly. Walter Becker had nothing to do with that recording.
DAN RATHER: This conversation is tight, like a too-small bathing suit on a too-long ride home from the beach.
OFFICIAL: Would you like to take off your Fez hat?
DAN RATHER: Sure! This thing is as tight as the rusted lug-nuts on a ’55 Ford.
OFFICIAL: Sir, we have some clothes you can wear.
DAN RATHER: Turn the lights down, the party just got wilder!
DAN RATHER: Al Gore has his back to the wall, shirt tails’ on fire with this race in Florida.
OFFICIAL: We’ll see that you get some help Mr. Rather.
DAN RATHER: Smelling salts for all Democrats please. This race is shakier than cafeteria Jell-O! It’s a ding-dong battle back and forth.
OFFICIAL: Your car is here Sir.
DAN RATHER: I don’t wanna do your dirty work! Drink your big black cow and get outta here!
OFFICIAL: Let’s go Sir.
DAN RATHER: Where’s my waitress?
End of transcript.
Dan Rather arrived in New York last night. He is scheduled to appear on Dancing With the Stars next week on ABC.