ZPi | GPM #8: Pat, Your Passport Pal
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Lyle Zapato

GPM #8: Pat, Your Passport Pal

Lyle Zapato | 2004-11-22.8000 LMT | Government Propaganda Mascots

Pat, your Passport Pal

Pat, your Passport Pal works for the US Department of State under Colin Powell, your (soon to be ex-) Secretary of State Pal, where Pat teaches kids that they are not allowed to go anywhere without government approval.

You see, Pat isn't just a state issued document designed to control and monitor your travels abroad and show the government's ownership of you, he is your Pal. You like carrying him with you. You welcome his presence and wish you could bring him along everywhere -- even when traveling within your own country! People who disapprove of Pat's friends from the government occasionally asking to see Pat as you carry him around your neighborhood are meanies! Why do they hate Pat so?

Much like the infamous infant tactoprogramming tool Pat the Bunny, Pat the passport subliminally invites you touch him, to feel the texture of his faux leatherette cover, to run your fingers along his edge, enjoying the rounded corners of his pages, and, yes, to even pat him gently as he nuzzles inside your coat pocket. You know you want to.

On Pat's corner of the State Department site you can play some fun games with Pat, like guiding him through a maze to the Great Seal, matching flags to countries, or a word find game. (Can you find "PLO"? Hint: it crosses the "plo" in "diplomacy." Maybe Pat's a fan of Equidistant Letter Sequences made famous by the Bible Code.) There's also fun State Department trivia: Did you know that the first Secretary of State to travel outside the US while in office was William H. Seward, who visited the Caribbean in 1866 and met with Danish and Spanish colonial officials and the Presidents of the Dominican Republic and Haiti? Now you do! See how much fun it is to play with Pat?

End of post.