An Associated Press story caught our eye last week because of all the romantic images that flock to mind when we think of North Korea. It said:
"North Korea's new, young leader Kim Jong Un is married, state TV reported Wednesday for the first time in a brief and otherwise routine announcement that ends weeks of speculation about a beautiful woman who has accompanied him to recent public events."
How sweet. And to think, some people say Pyongyang is a tough place in which to find love. But we've got to imagine that, as with any pair of newlyweds, there are tough times in the early going. Here's how we imagine the weekend went:
Wife: Where are we going tonight?
Kim: There's a state dinner with the Chinese.
Wife: The Chinese? Again? We see them all the time.
Kim: Well, there are very many of them. It's not always the same ones. And you know how important they are to me. Very, very, important, these Chinese.
Wife: You told me when we were dating that you were the most important person in the world, and that's why you demand to be called "supreme leader."
Kim: OK, maybe I exaggerated. You never had anyone try to impress you on a date before?
Wife: Can't we go dancing at a club instead?
Kim: No, no dancing allowed.
Wife: How about seeing the new Batman movie after dinner then? I hear it's great.
Kim: Holy mother of Mao, what have you been reading, Entertainment Weekly? I told you before -- we can't enjoy any Western culture. How would that look to the masses?
Wife: Oh, I knew I should have taken up with William Stanton when I had the chance.
Kim: Who is this William Stanton? I will have him executed tonight.
Wife: You can't -- he's the U.S. diplomatic representative to Taiwan.
Kim: Oh, you're just trying to make me angry now. That won't work. You think you're a very tricky wife, but I'm smarter than you. I'm not just supreme leader but first secretary of the party, first chairman of the military, supreme commander of the army. You think they'd give me all these titles if I weren't so smart?
Wife: There you go again with the big talk. If you're so smart, why don't you have a nuclear bomb yet?
Kim: Who told you that? I have a nuclear bomb!
Wife: OK, OK, don't get hysterical. What are you going to do, send me to a detention camp?
Kim: Don't give me any ideas.
Wife; Aw, sweetie, c'mon, don't pout. I was just joking a bit. You know these past few months have been the happiest of my life.
Kim: You're just saying that because you're no longer starving like my other citizens.
Wife: Well, sure, that helps. But when I look in your eyes, I see the soul of greatness. I really think we can do wonders together for our people.
Kim: That sounds better.
Wife: Hmmm, interesting. You know, honey, are you sure you really have to be so nasty to the Americans? I've always wanted to go to New York.
Kim: Well, that's not happening. You see the way they treat me. They started it.
Wife: Um, I'm not so sure ...
Kim: Didn't you read it in the schoolbooks? They are enemies who hate and attack us!
Wife: Yeah, well, I wouldn't believe everything you read. You know your father could be, uh ... well, you know.
Kim: Now you're talking about my father! My father! I'm going to call the guards right now.
Wife: Sorry, sorry -- forgot you were so touchy about the great Kim Jong Il. I won't say another word. Sheesh.
Kim: Good. Let's try to just have a civil time together, like a proper husband and wife. Quit talking about all this politics.
Wife: Um, what do you want to talk about then, dear?
Kim: I don't know. What do you think of Mariah Carey becoming a judge on "American Idol" this fall?
Wife: I thought we weren't allowed to watch that sort of Western trash.
Kim: Stupid female swine, this is "A.I." we're talking about! I've never missed an episode -- how dare you speak against it. You've gone too far now. Guards!
Wife: Oh dear.intelligencer
Gary Rotstein: firstname.lastname@example.org or 412-263-1255.