Thursday, December 10, 2009

2009: A Look Back at the Year in Review

JANUARY: Barack “Hussein in the Membrane” Obama is sworn in as the forty-fourth president of the United States. However, due to a misspeaking of the oath of office by Chief Justice John Roberts and some confusion regarding a birth certificate, George W. Bush technically remains president for an extra hour and a half, during which time he issues blanket pardons for Dick Cheney, Colonel Oliver North, Richard Nixon, and Dr. Richard Kimball as played by Harrison Ford in the movie The Fugitive. During his inauguration speech Obama pledges to fix the economy, provide universal health care, balance the budget, achieve world peace and racial harmony, and reach across the aisle to work with Republicans. In a tragic twist, no Republicans actually hear this extended olive branch because Fox News was re-running an episode of Fox and Friends during the inauguration. Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich puts Barack Obama’s vacant Senate seat up for auction on ebay with buyer’s protection and free shipping.

FEBRUARY: Congress passes an economic stimulus package using some of the extra money the federal government has lying around. Record sales of ammunition are reported on rumors that President Obama has been sneaking into people’s homes at night to steal their guns. John McCain holds a press conference blaming the youth of America for his election loss. “I would have gotten away with the Presidency, too,” he says, “If it wasn't for those meddling kids.” Courageous voters in California solve the state’s budget crisis by banning gay marriage.

MARCH: Fugitive financier Bernie Madoff is arrested by federal agents when he emerges from hiding to apply for a government bailout. He cashes his $65 million executive bonus check from a prison yacht in the Caribbean. Democrats in Congress promise a vigorous debate on healthcare including many town hall meetings where the public can participate in the process. Republicans giggle and whisper amongst themselves at this but, when asked what is so funny, they just smile and say, “Oh, nothing.” Reeling from the economic collapse, the nation finds solace in the heart-warming relationship of famed Octomom Kate Gosselin and her doting husband Jon.

APRIL: Liberals applaud Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor as “the most politically correct choice imaginable” while Conservatives fume at the absurdity that a Latina woman could ever be wiser than a white male. South Carolina governor and white male Marc Sanford immediately sets off on an international fact-finding trip to investigate Latina women. Susan Boyle turns the media world upside down with the flabbergasting revelation that singing talent is not exclusive to nubile, spandex-wearing twenty-two-year-olds. After Navy Seals shoot three Somali pirates to rescue the captain of the Maersk Alabama; the Recording Industry Association of American asks the Navy to deploy the snipers against anyone downloading pirated movies from the internet.

MAY: House Speaker Nancy Pelosi hurts the feelings of the Central Intelligence Agency by having the nerve to suggest that the CIA would actually lie. Colleges and universities cancel their graduation ceremonies as almost all seniors skip their final exams—5% of them citing swine flu fears and 95% deliberating failing as a desperate ploy to stay in school and avoid the worst job market since the great depression. Vice President Joe Biden urges all Americans to panic; Washington D.C. legalizes gay marriage.

JUNE: States begin setting up Death Panels in a pre-emptive, cost-cutting move to eliminate the sick, elderly, unborn, and anyone exercising their second amendment rights. The first victims: Michael Jackson, Farrah Fawcett, and pitchman Billy Mays. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, a religious conservative exploiting the xenophobic nationalism of his rural followers, is declared the winner of Iran’s contested presidential election by an unelected body of officials; pundits chalk up another victory for Karl Rove. Marc Sanford admits tearily that he has been Hiking the Appalachian Trail with another woman. His wife announces that she has no plans to Hike the Appalachian Trail with Sanford at any point in the future again, ever.

JULY: Sarah Palin resigns as Governor of Alaska to spend more quality time with her family by loading them on a bus for her book tour. Conservatives blast former President Bill Clinton for securing the release of two journalists imprisoned by North Korea and demand that he produce his birth certificate before being allowed back in the country. The Death Panel body count continues to mount including Walter Cronkite, retired quarterback Steve McNair, and concept artist Christo. Glenn Beck’s head explodes on live television.

AUGUST: Afghanistan’s President Hamid Karzai dismisses reports of election fraud saying that his 110% share of the vote constitutes a clear mandate from the people. Former president Clinton googles “Hiking the Appalachian Trail Lady Gaga Megan Fox” but quickly switches to a Microsoft Excel spreadsheet when Hillary enters his office. Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger is caught attempting to burn down the entire state of California to collect the insurance money. “It’s the only option left,” he claims. After 60 Minutes produces a piece investigating Death Panels, producer Don Hewitt is found with a poison dart in his jugular. Later that same week Senator Ted Kennedy dies in what some refer to as a “gangland-style revenge killing.”

SEPTEMBER: President Obama appeals to Congress to pass comprehensive healthcare reform, urges America’s children to stay in school, and pushes for Chicago’s 2016 Olympics bid. Expressing their outrage at these socialist policies, millions of conservatives cancel their health insurance, pull their children out of school, and move to Rio de Janeiro. Ken Burns’ documentary The National Parks achieves the highest ratings ever for PBS with the “Appalachian Trail” episode featuring David Letterman, Jon Gosselin, basketball coach Rick Pitino, Senator John Ensign, and Miss California Carrie Prejean. Sarah Palin shocks the world by announcing that she is resigning her judgeship on American Idol to spend more quality time with her family. Death Panels claim Patrick Swayze and William Safire.

OCTOBER: In an effort at compromise, the Senate proposes a healthcare bill that only includes “a strongly worded suggestion” that insurance companies “should probably not cancel the policies of orphaned children with cancer.” Rush Limbaugh decries this unwarranted government intrusion into the private sector. After minimal news coverage of its latest withdrawal from multi-party disarmament talks, North Korea breathlessly announces that fearless leader Kim Jong Il is trapped in a runaway weather balloon. Photographer Irving Penn and commentator Lou Dobbs fall victim to Death Panels. Jack Kevorkian is named Secretary of Health and Human Services.

NOVEMBER: The House of Representatives passes a sweeping overhaul of the American healthcare system. Horrified, the Senate approves a resolution condemning this as an act of aggression. Mayor Michael Bloomberg wins re-election by writing a personal check to each New York City voter for $180. Sarah Palin resigns as honorary treasurer of the Wasilla Jaycees. The Department of the Interior awards Tiger Woods a special commendation for Hiking the Appalachian Trail more than any celebrity since Magic Johnson. Death Panels reap the lives of gameshow host Ken Ober and Uga VII, bulldog mascot of the University of Georgia.

DECEMBER: During a very special episode of Holiday American Idol, the secular media declare victory in the War on Christmas. Congressional Democrats announce triumphantly that they have a new, comprehensive healthcare bill that will empower roving Death Panels to solve the problems of homelessness, unemployment, poverty, the looming insolvency of Social Security, and the continued celebrity of Sarah Palin. In a long-expected move, the bank finally forecloses on the city of Detroit. In his acceptance speech for the Nobel Peace prize, President Obama announces the immediate closure of the Guantanamo Bay detention camp, the end of the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” military policy, the revoking of the USA Patriot Act, and sweeping changes to U.S. environmental, public transit, energy, and agriculture policies to promote sustainability and fight the effects of global warming. “Sorry I didn’t get around to doing all that sooner,” he says. “I was on Facebook and I guess I lost track of time.”

Saturday, December 05, 2009

An Impromptu Interview with Nipsey Russell

I was coming back from an extended Thanksgiving stay with my extended family in Miami, Florida when I thought I saw a familiar face at the Miami airport. As I got closer, it was a familiar face indeed…the famed game show host Mr. Nipsey Russell! Of course he was mobbed by adoring fans-including me!

Luckily I carry my press credentials from VLKF on me at all times. Once I whipped that out, Mr. Russell eagerly agreed to do an interview right then and there! Well, almost then and there…We quickly retired to the Delta Airlines Crown Room Club® where we were promptly admitted as I showed a second set of credentials: my international fax technician identification. Fixing faxes pays off in more ways than the obvious!

So here it is: my impromptu interview with Nipsey Russell.

VLKF: I used to fix the fax machines for this club. Have you ever fixed a fax machine?

Russell: No.

VLKF: How did you get your start hosting game shows?

Russell: I started out back in ’65 hosting Here is Your Life with Merv Griffin. After that I moved on to Family Feud and a few other shows here and there. I was actually the first African-American host to appear in reruns on the Game Show Network.

VLKF: Truly inspiring. You have often been described as the poet laureate of the United States of America. How does this make you feel, and how did this start?

Russell: If you ever go out with a schoolteacher, you’re in for a sensational night; she’ll make you do it over and over again until you do it right.

VLKF: That’s beautiful. Did you just make that up?

Russell: No, of course not. That was Ezra Pound.

VLKF: Ah, she was one of the greats.

Russell: Indeed.

VLKF: Your work as a serious actor was described by president Obama as “pivotal for the advancement of African American artists.” What was it like acting in such true classics as In the Heat of the Night? And do you think that In the Heat of the Night will ever be shown on television?

Russell: Don’t be ignorant. There is a time and a place for everything there is, but now is the time when I gotta take a whizz.

VLKF: You are certainly no stranger to controversy, especially in the early nineties when you denounced your former friend Dick Clark as a fraud and a charlatan. Any regrets?

Russell: I am a straight shooter. I calls ‘em like I sees ‘em, and I sees ‘em like I calls ‘em.

VLKF: Can you tell us more about your son David Hampton and his attempt to pass himself off as the son of Sidney Poitier?

Russell: No comment.

VLKF: How have the recent internet rumors concerning your death affected your career?

Russell: I will survive. As long as I know how to love, I know I’ll stay alive. I’ve got all my life to live, I’ve got all my love to give, and I’ll survive.

VLKF: Have you ever incorporated any of your poetry into your game show or acting work?

Russell: No.

VLKF: Oh, I see. Do you have anything else that you would like to share with our readers today, Nipsey?

Russell: Playing Family Feud today are some talented women and men; lost their jobs giving money away, so now they're trying to win!

VLKF: Thank you. That was wonderful. Thank you.

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Today Only: Cavalcade of Facts

  • Birds do not sleep in their own nests. They must instead find a nest made by another bird or woodland creature to sleep in.
  • DRY CLEAN ONLY: A company in Japan sells underwear made from toilet paper.
  • The word "lamination" is derived from "lamentation" because funeral directors often covered their business cards in plastic so they would not be ruined by tears.
  • According to one estimate, comedian Tyler Perry is the world’s richest transvestite.
  • Approximately 175 million cubic yards of earth was dug up or dredged from waterways to create the Panama Canal. This material was used to form the country of Ecuador.
  • In 1982, a cactus in Phoenix, Arizona killed a man.
  • THINK OF THE RACCOONS: Due to the possibility of animals nesting in your engine block, PETA recommends that you shout, beep the horn, and bang the car door before entering any car parked outdoors.
  • The "Mexican Hat Dance" is the unofficial dance of Mexico.
  • Leslie Easterbrook, who played Callahan in the "Police Academy" movies, sang the National Anthem at Super Bowl 17.
  • People who wear dentures are often afraid to eat.