(At last night's Tampa Bay Lightning/Buffalo Sabres game, Former President William Jefferson Clinton was a guest of Sabres owner Thomas Golisano, a supporter of the Clinton Global Initiative. Clinton was a guest in the owner's box along with former tennis great Monica Seles, and addressed both teams in their locker rooms. Here is a quick transcript of his visit with the Lightning. And feel free to read the Clinton passages in Darrell Hammond's voice from "SNL." We did.)
CLINTON: Nice to see you all, and I'll make this quick because Monica's waiting. Did anyone else just feel a chill?
You know, as a young man in Arkansas, I didn't get to see much ice hockey. But when I discovered watching ice hockey in the arena, I realized it's basically like growing up in Hope: A crowd of people coming together to consume alcohol and cheer wildly as men beat each other with fists or sticks or sharp things without any concern for legal recourse. It almost brings a tear to my eye.
While it's strange to stand here before a group of underachieving millionaires mired in failure and not be using the word "bailout," I will tell you from personal experience that it is always darkest before the dawn. Don't get caught up in the negativity, or hung up on the numbers. Look, I know about as much about ice hockey as I do about President-Elect Obama, but even I know Ryan Malone's not worth seven years and a $4.5 million cap hit. It doesn't mean his 12 points aren't worth just as much as any of Vinny Lecavalier's, am I right?
KOULES: Thank you, Mr. President. I feel your words have inspired my team, and they will take that inspiration to the ice tonight for victory. Here starts the Lightning revolution! (Ed. Note: The Lightning lost 4-2, moving to 1-7-4 under interim coach Rick Tocchet.)
CLINTON: Mr. Koules, I'd like to tell you that I am such a huge fan of your "Saw" movies. Not only do they scare me more than a cholesterol test, but they have some of my most favorite actors of all-time: Dina Meyer, Monica Potter, Shawnee Smith ...
KOULES: You know, we just did a film called "Repo! The Genetic Opera" with Paris ...
CLINTON: ... Hilton, I know. To be honest I prefer her earlier films. Now, I've heard you've been havin' some problems with that fella with the fancy suits.
KOULES: Barry Melrose? Yeah. Not so much, me, though. My co-owner, Len Barrie, has been taking it on the chin.
CLINTON: I hate when people take it on the chin.
So you're a beloved figure, but your partner is divisive and, in some cases, universally loathed? Boy, do I ... know ... the feeling.
KOULES: There's no way I can convince you to coach this team, right? I mean, your hair alone would qualify you for inclusion in Lightning management. I can even throw in a few boxes of Andreychuk's cigars ...
CLINTON: Sorry, Oren, but I have to decline. I'm putting all my energy into the Clinton Global Initiative as a marketplace for a diverse community of changemakers to develop commitments that fit their core business and philanthropic goals.
Right after I find and convince some of the local talent here in Buffalo to lick my sweater because the colors taste like candy.