THE PLANK OCTOBER 22, 2007
Valerie Plame Wilson's memoir comes out today, and as you may have heard, the CIA censors have gone to town on it (so much so that she and her publisher, Simon & Schuster, sued unsuccessfully in federal court in an attempt to be allowed to publish more of it). As a result, we're a bit puzzled by what Wilson is trying to say in several of the book's key passages--so we're asking for your help. In the two passages below, please let us know what you think Wilson might have written before the CIA got its hands on the book. (The size of the blanks approximates the censored parts of the book--make sure to fill in each blank with text of the appropriate length!) Reply either in the comments section or by sending your answers to firstname.lastname@example.org; we'll print the best ones in the magazine next week.
Page 40: "We were sitting in a bustling tavern ______________________________________________________. As the lunch crowd thinned and the waiter cleared the last of our ___________________________ ___________________________ didn't hide his high opinion of himself, often offering his ideas after taking long self-important drags on a Marlboro; however, his smarts and experience more than made up for his bravado. I took a small sip of ________________________ wine that somehow perfectly complements _________ cuisine, and then a deep breath. 'You know, ________ your insights are brilliant and absolutely on the mark. They could really help Washington understand the changing political landscape ____________________________________________________ ____________________________________________________'"
Page 46: "Many of my weekend trips ______________________________________________________ _________________________________________________ had a secret _________ agenda. I took several ________ female _____________________________ on these road trips and I learned more about their desires and motivations in one weekend than in a slew of dinner meetings in town. Inviting a male ________________ was trickier, for the obvious reason of not wanting to send the wrong, romantic signals. In those cases, I included a small group of friends to block any assumptions that more than platonic friendship was involved, ______________________________________________________ ______________________________________________________"