We’ve heard plenty of half-assed, insincere resolutions that intoxicated New Year’s revelers make - and break - every year. We’ve made a few ourselves, and frankly, we’ve bailed on them too. (Except Norm - he resolves to continue ranting at all of us and he keeps that promise all year long.)
So why set yourself up for failure? Why drag your miserably pathetic self-esteem through the cold January slush by trying to attain some arbitrary and unreachable goal that is soooo incredibly unrealistic that the pursuit of it nearly crushes your soul? Why do this to yourself?
We’re here to help.
Below is our list of new, fun, and not-so-lofty New Year’s resolutions that will stand in stark contrast to the tired old ones that never quite made it past Groundhog Day. Out with the old, in with the new.
OLD: Getting in shape.
NEW: Buying a subscription to Sports Illustrated.
OLD: Being nicer to your co-workers.
NEW: Finding a job.
OLD: Getting back into the dating scene.
NEW: Organizing your huge collection of downloaded porn.
OLD: Traveling to California to take the Sideways tour.
NEW: Traveling the country to take the Borat tour. Bonus points if you stay in costume and in character the whole time. Give us a heads-up if you plan to sing the national anthem at a rodeo. We want to be there for the fun.
OLD: Saving money and investing more.
NEW: Nope. You’re going to need that extra dough for your upcoming Borat tour.
OLD: Quitting smoking.
NEW: Finding lower prices on tobacco products online. We all know you’re never going to give that up, so you might as well save some money. Maybe enough to do the Borat tour. (OK, we’ll stop plugging that Borat shit.)
OLD: Taking some college classes.
NEW: Spending an extra 30 minutes boning up on Wikipedia before your nightly foray into pointless arguments on Internet discussion boards with people you’ve never met.
OLD: Reducing stress.
NEW: Seeking out and beating up all the tormentors in your life. Including all the people who outsmart you on discussion boards.
OLD: Making some home improvements.
NEW: Taking down the fucking Christmas decorations some time before April. Getting those non-functioning cars and appliances out of your driveway would be a nice gesture too.
OLD: Quitting drinking.
OLD: Staying in contact with friends and relatives.
NEW: Updating that tired Facebook page you haven’t logged in to since last summer.
NEW: Dropping a few coins in the Salvation Army kettle on your way into Wal-Mart. If you can afford it.
OLD: Eating out less.
NEW: Eating less. You look like Jabba the Hut.
OLD: Working on improving personal relationships.
NEW: Trying not to piss people off all the time. Is that really so hard to accomplish?
OLD: Keeping your house cleaner and more organized.
NEW: Calling the Orkin guy before that burgeoning colony of cockroaches carries you out of that little island of squalor you call “home.”
OLD: Conserving resources.
NEW: Since you probably don’t have as much money to spend on said resources now, this one gets another chance.
OLD: Improving your driving skills.
NEW: Just staying the fuck out of the passing lane would make us all happy.
We wish you the best of luck in the New Year. You’re going to need it.
Auschwitz gets its sign back. Polish police have recovered the “Arbeit Macht Frei” sign stolen last week from the gates of the Auschwitz concentration camp, and arrested five men allegedly involved in the holocaust hijinx. Noting that the suspects are not neo-nazis, a police spokesman stated that the theft was merely financially-motivated after it was discovered the men were attempting to sell the sign on Ebay. Unconfirmed reports suggest that a “substantial” bid for the sign had been posted by Garrison Keillor, before being quickly withdrawn amid the publicity.
Pope knocked down during Christmas Eve mass. A crazed woman, wearing a hoodie and screaming like a banshee, jumped over security barricades and tackled the 82-year-old pontiff to the ground. Amazingly, the pope was unhurt in the incident. Upon hearing the news, Italy’s Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi gave a statement from his hospital room, and quipped “welcome to my world!” Meanwhile Vatican officials are now insisting the pope ride in his bulletproof “popemobile” at all times while out in public.
U.S. military to stop punishing pregnant service members. In an about-face (pun intended), each branch of the military will now fully embrace pregnancies among its female troops, and is now issuing a new line of stretch-fit maternity uniforms and battle dress designed for expectant soldiers.
Madoff hurt in fall from prison bed. Convicted Ponzi schemer Bernie Madoff suffered facial injuries and broken ribs when he fell out of the bed in his cell. Apparently, the man smart enough to mastermind bilking billions of dollars from friends and associates doesn’t have enough sense to keep from tumbling off of a mattress. Madoff claims the incident was the result of a prison assault, but we all know that would never happen.
This week’s edition of NFTS was compiled by Phil, who thinks he may have contracted bird flu from eating an undercooked turducken at a grocery store deli in Omaha last week.
In response to flagging revenues this past year, Yahoo!, Inc., will be shutting down operations from Christmas Eve through New Year’s Day. The shutdown is expected to save the company over 35 million dollars in operational expenses.
The Sunnyvale, CA company plans to turn off its search engine and suspend other services such as Yahoo! Mail, Messenger and other features for the nine-day period. Nearly all of the company’s 13,000 employees will be furloughed without pay during the shutdown, with only maintenance personnel staffing the facilities. Advertisements scheduled to appear on the sites during the holiday period will be rescheduled throughout January and February.
“We apologize for the inconvenience,” an unnamed company spokesperson stated in an online video press release on YouTube today. “We’re doing our best to ensure that our brief hiatus is as painless as possible and we look forward to serving our customers again in the New Year.”
Meanwhile Google and Microsoft have enjoyed increased traffic on their search engine sites and an uptick in registrations for their respective free email services, Gmail and Hotmail. Google has also set up an interface that enables users of Yahoo!’s Flickr image hosting site to automatically port their photos over to Google’s Picasa site.
Most Yahoo users are nonplussed by the move, with surprisingly little commotion in the technology community. One tech blogger casually noted, “I was about to move all my stuff to Google sites anyway…this just gave me the opportunity to do it now.”
Yahoo stock was down slightly at closing today on NASDAQ, losing 11 cents per share.
In response to viewer criticism over the constant output from prolific documentary producer Ken Burns, the Public Broadcasting System has decided to launch The Ken Burns Channel, a new cable channel devoted solely to his work.
“We just can’t keep up with all of Burns’ shows on PBS,” said Robert McKenzie, assistant director of programming. “There’s enough material to fill up an entire channel, maybe two. Every time I turn around, lo and behold, there’s a new Ken Burns documentary coming out. I mean, seriously, does the guy ever sleep? We just needed a new place to put all that stuff. Now we will have Ken Burns around the clock. Ain’t it grand?”
This announcement comes as welcome news to PBS viewers, many of whom are relieved that Burns’ ubiquitous shows will be spun off to a different channel.
“PBS has become a one-string banjo,” lamented Melissa Langley, long-time PBS viewer. “I send keep sending them money and what do I get in return? A constant barrage of Ken Burns stuff, that’s what! If I turn on the tube and see one more, I swear I’m gonna scream!”
“Cripes, I can’t turn on freakin’ PBS without seeing that weasely little guy with some new show,” complained another viewer. “Did it ever occur to anyone that maybe, just maybe, we might like to watch something other than round-the-clock Civil War and national park stuff? Is it too much to ask for a little Monty Python or a decent Masterpiece Theatre once in a while? Shees!”
PBS plans to go live with the new channel, with 24/7 feeds to cable subscribers nationwide in early December. Check your local listings for more details.
Meanwhile, PBS has neither confirmed nor denied rumors that it plans next to spin off a Rick Steves channel.
Pet pugs devour dead owner’s body. The two dogs survived for two weeks inside their Papillion, NE house by nibbling on the face and torso of the owner’s corpse after he died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound. Apparently, there was no other sustenance on hand for the poor animals. It’s not like they could whip up a plate of spaghetti or something. When discovered by authorities, the dogs were happy to get back on a regular diet of Purina Dog Chow, after the fortnight of eating the guy’s kibbles & bits. And the lesson to take away from this story: always keep plenty of food in your pet’s bowl. Because…you just never know.
Tiny island nation recognizes breakaway republics. In what can best be described as an expression of diplomatic wharrgarbl, the South Pacific island nation of Nauru is officially recognizing the sovereignty of Abkhazia and South Ossetia - in return for 50 mil in humanitarian aid from Russia. Nauru, once known as “Phosphate Island” due to its former export of bird droppings, now has no industry and is unable to stay afloat (pun intended) financially, becoming dependent on aid from other nations.
This week’s edition of NFTS was compiled by Gordy, who has big dreams of moving to the island nation of Nauru, just as soon as he cashes in all the aluminum cans he’s been gleaning from area dumpsters the past 3 years.
In the wake of the brutal assault on Italy’s Prime Minister by a statue-wielding man, officials there are on the lookout for possible copycats.
According to wire service reports, a mentally disturbed man attacked premier Silvio Berlusconi with a small limestone gargoyle early Sunday, breaking his nose and several teeth. (The premier’s nose and teeth, not the gargoyle’s. Who writes this shit? -Ed.) Berlusconi remains hospitalized while the attacker, 42-year-old Massimo Tartaglia, is now in custody. The gargoyle remains undamaged.
Meanwhile, authorities are grappling with the possibility of a trend. In a country dotted with stone sculpture, police throughout the nation are deeply concerned that others may be inspired to commit similar crimes. Law enforcement officials have gathered intelligence suggesting the likelihood of copycats and are now taking steps thwart the would-be assailants.
“We have responded to this new threat,” said Fernando Bambino, a spokesman for Italy’s Polizia de Stato, the national police. “We now have armed guards and undercover agents posted near cathedrals, museums and plazas. We’re making sure this caper doesn’t happen again. If the Americans can prevent terrorists from blowing up airplanes with shoes or bottles of water, surely we can be just as effective keeping sculpture out of the hands of the wrong people!”
But local authorities are skeptical.
“This is just security theater,” lamented the mayor of a small village on the outskirts of Milan. “Does de Stato really think they can stop every punk who wants to swipe a statue and clobber somebody with it? People here are scared…really scared. This sort of thing will get out of hand!”
Security guards shoot man hawking bootleg CDs in Times Square. In the latest move to curb music piracy, armed guards hired by several record companies shot and killed a man who was peddling pirated CDs at a booth in Times Square in New York. Raymond Martinez, 25, was ordered by the Pinkerton guards to “drop the jewel cases and step back away from the booth.” When Martinez failed to comply and sold a Madonna disc to a tourist, the guards opened fire. At a press conference later that day an unnamed RIAA official called the shooting “a sad but necessary step in the continuing war on music piracy.”
NRA starts weapons wiki. Trying to improve its tarnished public image and boost its flagging membership, the National Rifle Association has started the Internet Movie Firearms Database (imfdb). The wiki describes the types of guns used in various action-adventure films, with various other information. NRA’s executive VP, Wayne LaPierre, gushed with giddy excitement: “we’re making guns and gunplay cool once again!”
Elderly British man dragged by horse while performing sex act. David Chamberlin, 71, was in the throes of equine ecstasy with a mare, when the horse suddenly decided it didn’t want to continue, bolting and dragging the hapless 71-year-old man through a pasture. The Middlesbrough man was charged with lewd conduct. The judge, trying his best to hold back the laughter, admonished Chamberlin in court, saying “you’re just not stable.” Chamberlin was given a court order barring him from having “unsupervised contact with farm animals.” There seems to be a rash of this sort of thing in Britain recently.
This week’s edition of NFTS was compiled by Tina, who amuses herself to no end by feeding hot peppers to Bill the Weather Dog and then watching him drink the toilet dry afterward.
What happens when you mash up some of Neil Patrick Harris’ lines from How I Met Your Mother, with the cartoon classic, Frosty the Snowman? A rather funny Xmas gag, of course. And maybe just a little bit of outrage. Well…that’s what we’re here for.
The Boston Beer Company, makers of the famous Samuel Adams beers, have developed a new, “extreme” brew with a 27% alcohol content. Vast improvements in brewing technology, including genetically-engineered yeast strains, have paved the way for strengths well beyond the 12-14% ABV limit previously found in malt beverages. The new, 54-proof beer, dubbed “Utopias,” is aged for 15 years and bears a $150 a bottle price tag. It’s also banned in 13 states, due to its high alcohol content.
But Boston Beer’s ride atop the high-octane wave was short-lived. It was later reported that a small brewpub in Ohio plans to release its “Everbeer,” a 200 proof (100%) alcohol beer. Pending approval of its license from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, Everbeer will soon be distributed to liquor stores across the U.S.
“This will be the first beer you can either drink or use as a motor fuel additive,” boasted an unnamed official at Everbeer’s brewery.
Cash for appliances? After the huge successes of the Cash-For-Clunkers program, the government is now proposing a cash for appliances payout. The Obama administration hopes the stimulus will encourage people to buy new appliances and boost retail sales. The Department of Commerce has set up a website and toll-free hotline to answer questions. But due to massive traffic, the site’s server crashed on the first day and the 800 number’s switchboards were swamped with calls from people asking about whether the cash rebates will apply appliances ranging from sex toys to wine coolers to keg fridges.
Bank of America announced that it will be paying off its $45 billion TARP loan. The financial institution’s officers are so ecstatic, they are celebrating the momentous occasion this week by giving themselves huge raises. Hurrah!
Man hammers TVs in Minnesota Target store. The man, Jerome Charles Eberle, of Chicago, was observed “walking like Frankenstein” in the Winona, MN, store, smashing televisions with a hammer. Following several calls by frightened customers, police apprehended the man after tasing him. This is the second such incident at the Winona Target store. Last summer, a man resembling Gallagher entered the grocery department of the store, swinging a large wooden mallet at various items in the produce section.
General Motors CEO ousted. Fritz Henderson, the CEO installed by the Obama administration just 8 months ago to help guide the wallowing automaker, has now resigned amid allegations he was constantly at loggerheads with the company’s board of directors. Henderson’s family is quite upset. The U.S. government, which now owns a majority stake in the company, has severely limited executive pay, causing the board to believe it will have a difficult time recruiting a qualified leader to take Henderson’s place. With its limited budget, the company has now resorted to placing ads on Craigslist and has hired a headhunter firm which is sifting through LinkedIn profiles, looking for anyone who might be willing to fill the chief executive spot on the cheap. Applicants for the CEO position can apply online at GM’s website.
This week’s edition of NFTS was compiled by Norm, who was not amused at all when he discovered that Bug the Cat had left a special something on his keyboard this morning.
The Zhu Zhu Pets toy hamster. It’s one of the hottest and most sought-after Christmas gifts this year. It’s also now on the Transportation Security Administration’s no-fly list. Due to its small size and maneuverability, the furry, mechanized toy has been deemed by the TSA to be “an extreme danger” to air transportation. Effective December 1, the toys are no longer allowed as a carry on or in checked baggage on flights within, or originating from, the United States.
So what’s the big deal? TSA officials gave a press conference yesterday outlining the agency’s fears that a terrorist could load explosives into one or more of the toy rodents and remotely guide them within the cabin of a plane, through ducting in an airport terminal or into crowds of people. The robotic hamsters are small and easily concealable, making them difficult to detect by current security technologies.
“There are many places one can hide a hamster,” said Ira Clemens, TSA spokesperson. “People are clever…and twisted too. It’s not unusual for some individuals to hide hamsters in places on their person…uh…well out of the sight of our security personnel, if you know what I mean. We simply cannot perform body-cavity searches of every passenger boarding a plane - even though some of us would kinda like to, he he. So we’ve tuned up the sensitivity of our airport metal detectors to try to catch these devices.”
The sudden ban has caused outrage among shoppers, who are now forced to mail the gift toys in advance of their holiday travel.
“These airport security people are scared of a little pipsqueak toy animal for christssake!,” complained an angry passenger who just had three of the Zhu Zhu Pets confiscated while checking in for her flight to Orlando. “I never saw those goons get bent out of shape over Tickle Me Elmo. Or how about GI Joe with the Kung-Fu Grip? You could do a lot of damage with that, but nooooo, they didn’t flake out over those either!”
The TSA is standing behind its decision, insisting that the ban will greatly reduce the possibility of domestic terrorism.
“People will thank us when we stop some crazed suicide bomber with an explosive Mr. Squiggles lodged up his butt,” added Clemens. “We’re just doing our job.”
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