News Items I Expected To See When I Was Eight Years Old

By: David Jaggard

Man’s Death Ruled Accidental

Services were held yesterday for Terrence “Terry” Bly-Oldman, a well-known figure in the local community, who died suddenly last Thursday. He was 45. The county medical examiner’s office has given the cause of death as postprandial aquatosis. “We were all sitting out on the deck,” his wife told investigators. “He ate an apple, and then 59 minutes later — with only 60 seconds to go! — he dangled his foot in the swimming pool. He was killed instantly.”

“I begged him to be careful,” said his grieving but not tearful son, “but he wouldn’t listen to me.”

Although Bly-Oldman had been in frail health for many years due to a lifelong habit of only perfunctorily rinsing, instead of really washing, his hands after going to the bathroom, his death has been ruled an accidental suicide. An autopsy revealed a potentially life-threatening stomach blockage due to multiple wads of bubble gum he had apparently swallowed decades ago, but this condition did not seem to be a contributing factor in his sudden demise.

At his funeral Bly-Oldman was remembered by all for his success in business, his service to the community, his devotion to his family, and for throwing up all over the pianist during the school choral concert when he was in second grade.

Lottery Winner Reveals Secret Of Good Luck

A winner of not one, not two, but three super-mega-jackpots in the tristate Googolball Lottery has revealed the secret of her success. After winning her third multimillion-dollar prize on Thursday, Annette Fortsch of Yip, PA, explained to reporters that she has lived all her life in houses with black and white checkerboard floors in every room and has never once, in all her 23 years, stepped on a black square. Fortsch’s winnings total $945,320,450 — so far!

President Reviews Issues Of National Importance In State Of The Union Address

In his annual State of the Union speech yesterday, the president discussed the key problems of pressing, vital concern to every US citizen. Since the vice president was unavailable, the chief executive was introduced by the next most important, powerful person in the country, Mr. Ernest Stern, principal of Warren Harding Elementary School in Lughaven, Pennsylvania.

In his opening remarks, the president revealed that a new kid would be joining Mrs. Dorriger’s third grade class at Warren Harding next week. His name is Eric. It is not known yet whether he seems destined to be popular or not. Our nation’s leader then expressed his condolences to the Weinbergen family, whose dog Mister Bows was recently run over by a car, and to the Leforge twins, Noel and Pascale, whose parents are getting a divorce.

In the second part of his speech, the president outlined his plan to introduce urgent, strongly-worded federal legislation that would extend and redefine the concept of personal property. The proposed bill would guarantee and protect the exclusive inviolable property rights of every US resident, including minors, to playthings, board games, puzzles, sports equipment, recordings of popular music, plastic assembly models, food items (in particular confectionery), sides of the back seats of vehicles, certain chairs and spots on the floor in front of the TV, and even television viewing times. The Supreme Court has agreed to grant an exemption to the “ex post facto” clause of the Constitution, making the new law retroactive to Saturday of last week, when the Holiday on Ice Special was scheduled right in the middle of the Star Trek marathon.

Christmas Delayed Again This Year

The National Time Service in Washington D.C. has announced that in all likelihood Christmas will once again arrive late this year. It has been noted that for the past six or seven years the much-anticipated holiday seems to come later and later, often appearing to be impossibly distant in the dimly perceptible future. Now scientific proof has been offered for the phenomenon.

Astronomers have discovered that abnormalities in the Earth’s shape and weight distribution are causing its rotation to slow down for part of its 24-hour cycle. When the landmass of North America, weighed down by skyscrapers, is facing the sun, the Earth actually spins more slowly, causing time to advance at one-half or even one-third its normal pace. Even more remarkably, the extraordinary celestial event doesn’t occur every day. According to NTS researcher Tim Tallier, “It only happens on non-holiday weekday mornings during the school year, between 9:45 am and recess, right about the time the kids in Mrs. Dorriger’s third grade class at Warren Harding Elementary are having their math lesson.” Tallier added that the time lag seems to be intensifying. “We’ve been recording weekly increases in day length of about 4.5% for the past five months. At this rate,” he said, “It’s quite possible that Christmas will never get here at all.”

New Discovery Sheds Light On Dinosaur Extinction

For many years paleontologists have known that giant reptiles dominated the biosphere starting in about 200 million BC and then suddenly became extinct approximately 60 million years ago. Many theories as to the cause of their abrupt disappearance have been forwarded — an asteroid impact, the eruption of a “supervolcano”, etc. — but now Prof. P.O. Parrish of the University of Pennsylvania has come up with a new explanation that the scientific community is hailing as the most plausible hypothesis yet. Parrish, a paleobotanist, had been comparing the gene structure of modern vegetables with fossilized plants from the Mesozoic Era when he came to a stunning conclusion. “I was trying to determine exactly when the plants we know today evolved into their present forms,” he told reporters, “and by tracing genetic changes back many generations and comparing that information with fossils, I have been able to prove that broccoli, asparagus, cauliflower, spinach and brussels sprouts all came into being just before the great dinosaur extinction.”

Much as the fearsome reptiles dominated the animal kingdom, Parrish found that these vegetables dominated the plant kingdom, to the point that eventually there was virtually nothing else for the herbivorous creatures to eat. Of course the fossils that are found today are all skeletons, but this new evidence suggests that most of the dinosaurs were already nearly skeletons when they died.


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