David Shearer: Thanks everyone for attending this special caucus meeting. I know the last few days have been tumultuous ones, but we need to address the behaviour of one of our caucus members.
David Cunliffe: Oh, come on, give me a break! This is all a huge beat up! I told the media I would vote for you if you decided to put your leadership up for a vote today. You can’t discipline me for being loyal. Bring it on!
David S: You think we’re here for that?
David C: Well what the hell else are we here for?
David S: Don’t take that tone with me. You know what you did.
Clare: You mean this isn’t about what David said and did at conference?
David S: No, it’s much worse than that.
Grant: When David told me what David had done, I felt sick to the stomach. Some things are just sacred. Tell them what David did, David.
Shane: Hang on there. Which David are you talking about? The whare or the huhu grub?
Phil Goff: Oh for heaven’s sake! Didn’t we agree when the leadership changed that we’d come up with special names for all our Davids? Part of the reason we’re in this mess is there are too many Davids and we never know who the heck we’re talking about. Our leader was going to be Brown Bear, our finance spokesperson Grey Badger, our Economic Dev–
David C: I told you at the time that I took exception to being called the Silver Snake!
Grant: Helen wouldn’t have had a bar of it. Four Davids!
David S: Well Helen’s not here any more.
Grant: I can call her if it will help.
Clayton: Put the bloody phone away!
David S: I’m talking about our Economic Development spokesperson. David, do you want to tell everyone what you did, or shall I?
David C: I’m not sure what you’re accusing me of. I felt certain I was here to be demoted because you thought I was disloyal, and now you’re saying I did something else wrong?
David S: What you did was disloyal. It was a gross betrayal of my trust. How can I trust a colleague who does such thing?
Trevor: Shame on you!
David S: The thing I treasured the most was taken away from me. I had a terrible last week, after all those blogs I don’t read savaged me, and then all those columnists said my leadership was dead in the water. And the one thing that sustained me during my darkest hour, the one thing, was the knowledge that once I’d finished a gruelling week in the House I would have my reward: the custard tart I had left in the staff fridge. The custard tart in a paper bag that had “This is David’s custard tart, do not eat!” written on it. But when I went to seek solace in that confectionery delight, it was gone. Gone!
David C: How is that my problem?
David S: You ate my custard tart!
David C: I don’t even like custard.
Jacinda: Surely if something was in the staff fridge it was fair game. Don’t we believe as a party in the redistribution of wealth?
David C: I didn’t steal your custard tart. Why are you even accusing me of this?
David S: Because I’ve been watching you. It’s not the first time something like this has happened. In recent months I’ve noticed a number of delicious treats go missing. First it was a doughnut, then a lamington, then a chocolate éclair. One day I came rushing to the fridge desperate for my cake fix after another mauling in the House, only to find that someone had eaten every single one of my neenish tarts! And then I saw you there, leaning at the sink next to the fridge with that huge shit-eating grin of yours. You told me at the time you’d just come to make yourself a coffee, but deep down I knew you’d been devouring my treasures.
David C: What nonsense!
David S: And it all began just after you first shaved your beard.
David C: What’s my beard got to do with it?
David S: You knew your pilfering would be detected if you kept that beard. The custard and cream would get trapped in your whiskers, and you would be a walking advertisement for cake crime. So like the devious master criminal you are, you shaved. You thought you’d never be caught, but then you grew sloppy. You grew careless. You thought to yourself “I’m the king of the world! I might grow another beard”, never imagining that it would be the key to your downfall.
David C: Of all the ridiculous things…
David S: Go on, laugh! You won’t be laughing when I consign you to the backbenches. I caught you out! Last Thursday night I came to your office, because I had to know if it was you who’d stolen my custard tart. You didn’t see me there standing in the doorway of your office as you read that report on monetary policy, but I saw you, and I saw what was all over your whiskers.
David S: I have worked in warzones all around the world, and never, never in all my years of delivering humanitarian aid to the poor have I encountered such a nefarious cake thief!
David C: Okay, so maybe it was me. But how was I to know it was your custard tart? It had my name on it!
David S: It was my name too! But you didn’t buy it, so you must have known it wasn’t your property.
David C: I thought my assistant must have bought it for me. I often run out of time to buy my own food. I’m a busy man!
Chris: Lies! All lies!
David Parker: Custard tart terrorist!
David Clark: Um, can I just put something on the record here? I just want it recorded that I’m not the David C everyone keeps talking to.
Grant: Duly noted. Now sit down, Reverend, and keep your trap shut.
David C: Well I’m sorry if I ate your food, but I still don’t see why it has to be such a big deal.
Shane: If you stand between a man and his kai it is a big deal, my friend.
Annette: We shouldn’t stand for this. An example has to be set. None of our lunches will be safe unless we act firmly and decisively.
David C: Charles, Lianne, Sue, Parekura… help me out here. Parekura!
Jacinda: Parekura’s asleep again. Someone nudge him.
Phil Twyford: Give Ross a shove too, while you’re at it.
Charles: David, I fully supported you before today, but I can’t help you now. You’re dead to me.
Lianne: I feel ill. I trusted you, David.
Sue: Herchk! [spits a gobbet of phlegm at David C’s feet]
Trevor: Let’s vote on it. All those in favour of banning David Cunliffe from using the staff fridge say “aye”. Right, the ayes have it. Was there anything else we had to deal with today?
Andrew: Wasn’t there something that happened in the weekend?
Grant: Um… oh, the leadership vote, and demoting David Cunliffe for his conference treachery!
David S: Oh yes, I forgot about all that! Righto, hands up if you think I should still be boss. Good. David, you’re fired. That’s it, meeting over. Thanks, guys! Have a great night!