Dear Jack-ass (s),
I am not your bitch. I facilitate your requests in the swiftest manner possible, but I refuse to perform any illegal actions to make up for your ignorance or poor planning. If your request is unlawful, I will tell you and expect you to move on. I will not fulfill any subsequent requests to either "turn a blind eye" or "make this one little exception." The tax-payers do not pay me nearly enough to go to jail for you.
Furthermore, when I brief you on the time-line necessary for completing any purchase requests I fully expect you to respect my timeline. I did not arbitrarily conjure this timeline up - it is based on the exact number of days and weeks my department needs in order to provide the best possible customer service. It is incumbent upon YOU to notify me of your needs as soon as you are made aware of them as opposed to, say, three days before you need them because guess what: I AM NOT A MIND READER!
Along those lines, if you are looking to blame someone (other than yourself, that is) for the fact that Admiral So-And-So is not going to be able to have a special "gift" then I suggest you hire someone specifically for that job because it is not my job. Neither is it my job to sit in silence while you curse up a blue streak because of YOUR OWN piss poor planning.
If your contractor's contract does not specify that he is entitled to travel - you should probably ask for a modification before you send him on travel. If the Commandant needs a new flag for tomorrow's event, you should probably have requested the flag when the event was planned. If you want to give something away at graduation - do not ask the government to pay for it, use your own checkbook.
In short, if you're looking for a scapegoat - please look elsewhere because I am not she. My department is comprised of actual human beings, not superheros. Now get out.