As for my lazy theorizing that Dad's business this week is with the CIA, lazy web research suggests that "commandant" could suggest that I'm right or that I'm wrong.
Finally, DC-area ELLENWatchers please look out if shopping in Georgetown tomorrow. I suspect (hope?) Ellen's heading out on a vengeful spree--I could say with Dad's credit cards, but more likely it's with her own and he will still be indignant. Maybe both for good measure.