July, 2009 Archive
July 28th, 2009 by admin in Uncategorized
The U.S. Library of Congress is embarking on a document translation project of epic proportions: to translate its entire archives into Pig Latin. The Library, with a federal stimulus grant of 26 million dollars, hopes to have its entire collection transcribed into the language by 2015, but is in dire need of linguists to help in the monumental task.
With unemployment inching toward ten percent, that’s good news for job-hunters. The pay is excellent: starting salaries run upwards of $55,000 a year with full government benefits. The problem is trying to find enough qualified applicants.
“This would be a wonderful opportunity for recent college grads,” said James H. Billington, chief librarian and head book-stacker. “Unfortunately, Pig Latin is a dying language, and it’s only taught at a handful of universities in the country. The University of Kansas and DePaul still offer majors in the language, and maybe a dozen or so Catholic schools offer coursework. It’s tough finding qualified Pig Latin speakers. If we can get our hands on a couple hundred sharp new hires, we hope to translate the entire body of works in our archives before this beautiful language becomes extinct.”
The ambitious project will cover every piece of writing the Library houses - from literature to pop art, from sheet music to government documents.
Have you ever seen the Declaration of Independence in Pig Latin?,” added Billington. “Have you ever heard it being read aloud? It’s almost like poetry. It’s quite an enchanted tongue, really…the words just flow. It’s a real shame more people don’t embrace it. We’re even translating the King James Bible to Pig Latin!”
The Library of Congress will be conducting on-campus interviews at colleges and universities across the nation in the hopes of finding some decent candidates. Interested individuals can also fill out an online application at the Library of Congress site.
Meanwhile, the Library is seeking additional stimulus funds for a project to convert the entire poetry archives to haiku.
July 22nd, 2009 by admin in Uncategorized
“Gidget,” the perky Chihuahua star of Taco Bell’s 1990s television commercials has died from an airway obstruction after trying to wolf down a large burrito with sour cream. Gidget was 15.
“It’s kind of ironic,” said Karin McElhatton, the famous TV dog’s owner. “Ever since we started the Taco Bell campaign back in 1997, we kept Gidget on a strict Tex-Mex diet. Aside from some episodes of gas, that food suited her quite well. Until today, that is, when she choked on that tortilla.”
McElhatton made the horrific discovery after feeding the tiny pooch her noon meal.
“I came back from the other room, only to find her there on the floor,” added McElhatton, wiping back tears. “There she was, on her back, tongue hanging out the side of her mouth and all four paws straight up in the air. You just don’t know how shocking that is. Poor, poor thing!”
People in the community were equally saddened by the news.
“That little dog was a gem. She’s gonna be missed by all of us here in the neighborhood,” said next-door neighbor Sue Chipperton, with a long face. “People from all over used to drive by, hoping to get a glimpse of the famous Taco Bell dog in the front yard. But now she’s gone. It brings a tear to the eye.”
McElhatton plans to have the dog cremated, rolled up in a large chalupa and buried in her back yard. Officials at Taco Bell Corp. sent their condolences, along with coupons for two free meals.
July 22nd, 2009 by admin in Uncategorized
NASA launched a rocket last week. Normally, that would not be news. But this is no ordinary NASA launch. This particular rocket is carrying a 1.5 megaton hydrogen bomb on a journey to the moon. The unmanned LCROSS (Lunar Crater Obliteration and Search Satellite) mission will culminate in the detonation of the warhead on the surface of the moon in October. The nuclear test is expected to create a 5-mile-wide crater and send a plume of glistening moon debris hundreds of miles above the surface, a spectacle that will be clearly visible to the naked eye from earth. NASA believes that the explosion will force extraterrestrials living in underground colonies to react and come to the surface. NASA scientists then hope to use a remotely-controlled lunar lander to trap and return to earth one or more of the extraterrestrials.
“It’s been well documented that some of the Apollo astronauts spotted ETs during their flights back in the ’60s,” said Willard E. Schwartz, a NASA spokesman for the LCROSS project. “While those sightings have been met with much public skepticism over the years, the LCROSS detonation should finally confirm our long-held belief in the existence of extraterrestrials by flushing them out of their hiding places.”
“When those elusive little bastards see that mushroom cloud and feel the seismic shock, they’ll be coming out in droves,” added Schwartz. “It’s gonna get their attention - they’re really gonna be pissed! Then we’ll catch a few of those buggers and bring ‘em back to earth for study.”
Reaction to the news of the launch was swift, with thousands of protesters peacefully taking to the streets in several cities, carrying signs, singing songs and chanting “Don’t bomb the moon - it’s the only one we’ve got!“
Sensitive to the possible repercussions of this mission, especially in the wake of the recent 40th anniversary celebrations of the Apollo 11 moon landing, President Obama gave a short statement to the press today in hopes of assuaging any concerns over the lunar detonation.
“The moon will still be there,” assured the President. “It will always be there, for our children and our children’s children to enjoy, high up in the sky. We’re just knocking off a tiny piece of it, that’s all.”
NASA spokesman Schwartz is confident in the success of the LCROSS mission. “We’re sending it up during a new moon, so the aliens won’t see it coming!”
July 16th, 2009 by admin in Uncategorized
Thousands of uninvited guests have popped up in the waters and on beaches in the San Diego area - huge squid. Not your ordinary squid, but colossal 300-pounders that can leap out of the water and even fly short distances along the waves. Known as the Humboldt squid, the slimy, reddish creatures are extremely aggressive and can even attack on land. Typically found in deep waters farther south off the coast of Mexico, they have shown up in huge numbers along San Diego area beaches, due to strong currents.
So far there have been numerous reports of surfers, divers and swimmers being attacked by the giant cephalopods, with some unfortunate people suffering massive lacerations from the razor-sharp beaks and jagged tentacles, and even a few incidents of amputations. While no deaths have been reported yet, experts believe it’s just a matter of time.
“The bigger ones are particularly dangerous,” cautioned Josh Metzger, marine biology professor at San Diego State University. “A full-size Humboldt squid can grab an adult swimmer or surfer with its tentacles, pull him down and drown him. Then it has lunch. These creatures are not to be taken lightly.”
Beach-goers are well aware of the dangers.
“I saw one of those suckers skipping along the surface of the water,” exclaimed an unidentified surfer at La Jolla beach. “Dude, that thing was chasing a kid on a paddleboard. It got him too - took the poor guy’s right leg clean off! That’s some nasty shit right there!”
Reports of squid landing on beaches and crawling after sunbathers has resulted in nearly empty beaches from Coronado all the way north to Carlsbad. Humboldt squid can use its tentacles as makeshift legs, enabling the invertebrate to travel upwards of 10 to 12 miles per hour on land. Small children are particularly at risk, as the squid can eat them whole.
“Damn things have a genuine appetite for human flesh,” warned Matt Lopez, a lifeguard on duty at Imperial Beach, south of San Diego. “We are constantly giving first aid to people around here. The county is considering closing the beaches until the squid move on.”
“Used to be we only had to worry about Tijuana Brown Trout,” added a surfer at Imperial. “Now we have to be on the lookout for giant squid that knock you off your board and take an arm or leg off? Fuck that, I’m staying out of the water until that shit passes.”
Not surprisingly, squid is turning up on the menus of many restaurants in southern California, and is considered by some to be quite tasty.
July 12th, 2009 by admin in Uncategorized
Taking a cue from the popular yellow bike project, where donated bikes are painted yellow and left in various locations to be freely used on the honor system by citizens, a gun-rights group in Columbus, Ohio has attempted to do the same with handguns.
Dubbed the “Yellow Gun Project,” the Columbus Citizens for the Second Amendment (CCSA), obtained over 100 handguns, sprayed each with a bright, day-glo yellow paint, loaded them with ammunition and dropped them off at busy street corners throughout the Columbus metropolitan area. The gun group hoped that a criminal would quickly use a yellow gun in a crime he would commit anyway, then drop it off on a sidewalk or in a park for the next would-be felon to use. The group’s idea was that since criminals often use stolen guns, providing a ready supply of free ones might result in fewer gun thefts.
“They’re gonna do that crazy stuff just the same, so if we give these people the guns they need, that may help dry up the market for stolen ones,” claimed Art Trevethan (right), President and Grand Poobah of CCSA. “We got our members to offer up some cheap, crappy, but functional guns they no longer wanted - old .22s and such, and set up the project. A couple cans of Krylon and some ammo and we were in business! Maybe if the bad guys get in the habit of using those, they might quit breaking into law-abiding gun owners’ homes to steal our good ones.”
“Our guns are yellow, but our idea is green,” added Trevethan. “Think of it as a new form of recycling as they pass those old revolvers and automatics from one crook to the next. Hell, they might even shoot a few of each other with our yellow guns. It’s win-win!”
But the program backfired in epic proportions, despite its good intentions. Local merchants started noticing an alarming increase in armed robberies from perps brandishing the tell-tale yellow pistols. Pedestrians and bicyclists reported several muggings by yellow-gun-wielding robbers, and a recent spate of home invasions by a group of three men with brightly-colored .38s, has locals on edge.
In the wake of the yellow gun crime spree, worrisome city leaders had had enough.
“This is not a realistic solution to our escalating crime rates,” exclaimed an exasperated Michael B. Coleman, mayor of Columbus. “We’ve got bright yellow Saturday night specials floating all over the place. Those gun nuts are only fanning the flames here.”
The mayor called on the gun group to “round up all those damn guns and get ‘em off our streets.” But there was no putting that genie back in the bottle, as every one of the decoy guns disappeared from the streets of the city in a matter of days. Reports of the guns achieving collector’s status were confirmed when a few of them turned up for sale on Craigslist.
The gaffe is one the membership of the Columbus Citizens for the Second Amendment doesn’t wish to make again.
“I guess it’s back to the ol’ drawing board,” sighed Trevethan. “No good deed goes unpunished, I reckon.”
July 6th, 2009 by admin in Uncategorized
One-time vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin today made public her reasons for resigning from her position as governor of Alaska. At a press conference on the capitol steps in Juneau, Palin told the crowd of reporters and onlookers that she is stepping down to embark on an around-the-world cruise with her family.
“I’ve always wanted to travel to far away places…even farther than Washington, D.C.,” gushed the excited Governor to the crowd of over one thousand. “Seeing Russia from here isn’t enough - I have to actually go there. And Europe and Asia, and Africa, and other exciting places, too. Golly, the only foreign country I’ve been to so far is Canada. I think it’s a foreign country, anyway.”
Palin plans to take her entire family along on the two-year-plus adventure, which will include spending some time on a hunting safari in Mozambique, and possibly a seal hunt in Greenland. The Palin family will spend the next few months planning their itinerary, and will leave on a cruise ship from Seattle in late fall.
“There are lots of really neat animals in the world,” added Palin. “I’d sure like to have some of those on my walls when I get home in 2012.”
When asked what her plans might include after her return, Palin suggested that the world tour might qualify her for an appointment as an ambassador.
“I hope this trip gives me a chance to shop around and see what country I might like to serve diplomatically,” said the soon-to-be ex-governor. “It could be Australia, Paraguay, or Kazakhstan, who knows? What a great way to try one on for size!”
July 2nd, 2009 by admin in Uncategorized
Body Worlds creater Gunther von Hagens has pulled off a major publicity coup by acquiring the rights to Michael Jackson’s remains. Von Hagens plans to plastinate the late singer’s body for a display at his exhibits, which are viewed by millions worldwide. The controversial “Dr. Death” had signed an agreement with the King of Pop last year, stating that von Hagens would preserve Jackson’s corpse after his death.
“This has materialized sooner than I had expected,” said von Hagens, rather coolly during a telephone interview with Alligators In The Sewer staffers today. “I never would have guessed that Mr. Jackson would check out so soon. I need to get to work.”
Von Hagens plans to have Jackson’s body preserved in liquid nitrogen and flown to his studio in Germany some time next week. Von Hagens has expressed interest in mounting the body in a dancing pose.
The Jackson family is fully supportive of Michael’s last wishes.
“It’s what he wanted, for better or worse” said brother Jermaine, wiping back tears. “We intend to support his wishes, no matter what some people may think.”
A spokesman for Jackson’s booking agency was ecstatic.
“Knowing that millions of fans will still line up to see Michael Jackson long after his death just underscores the massive marketing juggernaut that is Michael Jackson,” said the publicist. “This is going to sell a ton of records and merchandise for many years to come. I only wish more rock stars would do this. That von Hagens dude is a genius.”
Von Hagens’ response to the publicity was right to the point: “People will pay big money to see this,” deadpanned the Body Worlds creator. “If only I had been doing this back when Elvis kicked off. Perhaps I need to be approaching some other celebrities who are circling the drain.”