At a top-secret,
secure location near Washington, former NBA star Dennis Rodman sits across a table from a dark-suited senior State Department official.
AGENT: Once again, Mr. Rodman, we appreciate your agreeing to this debriefing.
[slouching in his chair, feet up on the table] Whatever, bro. If you appreciate it so much, why did your guys rough me up when I got here?
AGENT: We apologize, but we've never had someone enter the compound with so many piercings, sir. You set off every security sensor in the building. It was standard protocol to restrain you until we could confirm that you were not a threat.
RODMAN: It's cool, brother. Not the first time I've been thrown to the ground and handcuffed. I remember this time, when I was dating Madonna—
AGENT: If we could stick to the matter at hand, sir. We know that you flew into Pyongyang last week along with three Harlem Globetrotters at the invitation of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, and that the pot-stirring media outlet VICE sent a film crew with you for an HBO documentary.
RODMAN: That's what those cameras were for? Man, I thought we were shooting some kind of foreign Celebrity Apprentice. No wonder I never did find Donald Trump.
AGENT: The U.S. government has a tense relationship with North Korea, Mr. Rodman, and the international community is highly concerned about the underground nuclear weapons test it conducted there a few weeks ago. Can you explain why you agreed to consort with a government hostile to the U.S.?
RODMAN: Why? I'm 51, bro. Been out of the NBA for 13 years. Did you see anybody putting me on magazine covers for my 50th birthday? I may be a Hall of Famer with five rings, but I'm not A-list anymore. Some of us have to work a little harder to stay relevant.
AGENT: Actually, our intelligence indicates that you agreed to the trip because when you were asked if you wanted to go to Pyongyang, you thought it was an after-hours club in Manhattan.