From a reader named Roger:
“Mr. Derbyshire—Actually, Bates Gill has been around quite a while doing
foreign policy analysis. This situation reminds me of the scene in the
movie ‘Office Space’:
“(perky annoying secretary) Your name is Michael Bolton?
“(grumbling reply) Yes
“(perky annoying secretary) Any relation to the singer?
“(grumbling reply) No, it’s just a coincidence.
“(cube mate) I don’t know why you get so discouraged. There’s nothing wrong
with your name.
“(M. Bolton) There WAS nothing wrong with my name. Until I was about 12
years old, and that no-talent a**-clown came along and started winning all
“(cube mate) Well, why don’t you just go by Mike then?
“(M. Bolton) Why should I change MY name? He’s the one that sucks.”
Somehow, after Microsoft Windows has crashed for the umpteenth time at CSIS,
I can see Bates Gill having a very, very similar conversation…