'But why us, Piglet?'
'Tigger says someone has to do it.'
'But we're not even part of…you know…Out There.'
'It's a crisis. Tigger's words.'
'How so? Sow ho?'
'Apparently they've been quietly not doing it for months and now they're openly not doing it.'
'But running their country, Piglet…how would we manage it?'
'Oh, I don't think managing comes into it much. Tigger says it's like taking a dog out.'
'Oh, my life…you mean guns and concrete boots and--'
'No, no, like taking a dog for a run.'
'I don't like the sound of that. Owl says lots of people say they're taking their dogs out for a run and then just leave them tied to a lamp-post in another town with a sign saying "Please look after this Mad Hatter, here's ten-and-six".'
'We can't do that, Pooh. That's exactly what they've been doing to their country.'
'Well I wouldn't know where to start.'
'You get to have titles. So if we give ourselves a title apiece, that might give us a hint about what to do next.'
'What sort of titles?'
'Well…you could be…Minister Without Portfoolery.'
'What do you do when you do how you do that?'
'Owl says you have to make sure that nobody abuses wines or spirits.'
'Gosh, does that happen often?'
'It never not happens. That's how they are where they are.'
'All right. I'll try that. What about you, then, Piglet?'
'I rather fancy Minister for International Degeneratement.'
'It's a big brief.'
'Big brief what?'
'Tigger hasn't got that far in his book.'
'Chaos for Beginners. But he'll let me know when he gets there.'
'Though it would mean a lot of travel.'
'Gosh, can I come with you?'
'You'd be indispensable, Pooh.'
'You mean they abuse wines and spirits everywhere?'
'It's part of what Tigger calls global-facing degenerationism. That's why everyone is where they are.'
'Well shouldn't we be degenerational too?'
'Oh, no, Pooh, we have to signal a new start. A gentler, kinder degeneracy, Tigger says.'
'Maybe if I came up with a new hum.'
'Ah, now, we may have one.'
'Old friend of Eeyore's, Shetland pony, sent him an old Scots ballad--'
'Shouldn't that be Auld?'
'Like that New Year's song…Any Auld Iron.'
'Auld, then, Pooh, auld. It's a stirring song of bright dawns and new beginnings, apparently.'
'What's it called?'
'The Twa Corbyns.'
'I look forward to hearing it.'
'No, Pooh, the term is, I will hear it going forward.'
'Don't tell me…Tigger says.'
'I think that's what he said. At the time he was putting clear blue water between where we were and where we are where we are.'
'Trying to jump the stream, then.'