Friday, December 30, 2011

New Year’s Eve Safety Advisory: What Goes Up Must Come Down

SAN NARCISO, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- The San Narciso Police Department is warning residents that continuing illicit New Year's Eve traditions can be dangerous and may result in jail time. Some residents, as part of celebrating the new year, have been engaging in dangerous behaviors that include breaking IKEA dishes on their neighbors’ porches, the practice known as “hogging” and hamster juggling. Mayor Manny DiPresso advised that while he has no idea where these traditions originated, they have no place in the suburbs.

Correction to Story on Dangerous Sinkhole in Pennsylvania and Santorum's Surge in Iowa

ALLENTOWN, Pa. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- The editors and staff of The Bennington Vale Evening Transcript apologize for the unintentional inaccuracies we encountered during our reporting of a sinkhole in Pennsylvania. The article, fatally flawed, has been removed from the site. On Thursday, a large sinkhole appeared in Allentown, Pa., spreading quickly to a historic cemetery. As a result, 25 people were evacuated from their homes, according to fire officials. The cemetery holds about 20,000 graves, including 714 Civil War veterans. Because of a poor phone connection with our correspondent in Pennsylvania -- the home state of former Senator and current GOP candidate Rick Santorum -- numerous aspects of the story were misunderstood. The story was meant to cover both Santorum's surge in the Iowa polls and the threat of the sinkhole to Allentown residents. Unfortunately, the information came across as: "A giant stinkhole in Pennsylvania evacuated a surge of Santorum Thursday, putting over 20,000 veterans in their graves." Some of the confusion stemmed from conflicting interpretations of Santorum and a related article we published yesterday.

We are committed to accuracy in our reporting and have therefore deleted the misprinted story from today's post. Interestingly, other congresspeople in neighboring states wrote to tell us that they found no apparent errors in the original post.

(c) 2011. See disclaimers.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Romney Clinches Lead in Polls as Iowa Voters Express Disgust at Reports of Santorum Surging Across State

DES MOINES, Iowa (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- With the caucuses poised to dominate political media next week, Republican presidential contenders have planned aggressive campaign schedules throughout Iowa. According to polls, the top three candidates are current GOP front-runner Mitt Romney, Indieliberepublicrat Ron Paul and former Senator Rick Santorum, who has spent the last three months raising money for a comprehensive study to determine whether he actually exists or is merely the imagination of himself. Yet somehow, Santorum has trickled out from behind to reemerge as a formidable threat. Analysts say it's because he resolutely upholds issues important to conservative Christians, a significant demographic in Iowa. But Santorum's rise in the polls could be jeopardized by Thursday's news that Iowans under the age of 40 have refused to vote for any candidate, denouncing the tone of the elections as "disgusting and inappropriate." They cited as reasons Romney's obsession with gay television icons, Gingrich's fudge fixation and the bizarre elation over Santorum surging across the state.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Behavioral Scientists Find Dangerous Link Between Alcohol, Holiday Meals with Family and Compulsive Need to Air Grievances

SAN NARCISO, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- Nutritionists have long known that the traditional holiday dinner makes up one of the healthiest mixes of proteins, vegetables, grains, starches and fruits when the proper levels of portion control are exercised. They also tout the moderate consumption of red wine as a "heart healthy" source of antioxidants and good cholesterol. But a new study finds that the combination of the two, exacerbated by the increased rush of adrenaline from elaborate holiday gatherings with family, can create dangerous levels of stress, depression and even violence, typically ending in tears, alienation and words that can never be taken back.

Monday, December 26, 2011

North Pole Offices Flooded with Complaints from Angry Children Who Received Video Games Instead of Two Front Teeth

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- Postal workers at the North Pole were inundated today by millions of letters from children who received video game systems, smart phones, tablets and other "in-demand" items instead of the two front teeth they requested. "I've been good all year," ten-year-old Barrett Nostrom of Sweden lisped, "why didn't Santa bring me my teeth? We have no use for this Xbox 360 machine on the farm. I opened it, and there were no Xs inside the box. I tried to use it as a doorstop for the goat pen, but the animals ate it right away. Cheap and worthless thing. But the equally misleading Apple device we got last year, which contained no fruit, did hold out much longer. Mother says it's the smoothest ironing board she's ever used."

Friday, December 23, 2011

Area Homemaker Pressured to Confess Christmas Fruitcake Not World Famous

SAN NARCISO, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- To Bennington Vale locals, homemaker Emmeline Kuchenkoch needs no introduction. Not only is she one of San Narciso's most sought-after bakers, she also happens to be the mother-in-law of GOP White House contender and area resident, F. Chester Greene. Chances are, if you've dined at Piers Addleson's Pea House and ordered a cake, the heady Linzer Torte or the bemusing marzipan characters inspired by the Passion of Christ, then you've sampled Kuchenkoch's wares. The Addleson family has been reselling her delicacies for over 40 years in their restaurant. But scandal rocked San Narciso County Friday when F. Chester Greene's political opponents discovered damaging information that pressured Emmeline Kuchenkoch to confess: "My Christmas fruitcake is not actually world famous."

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Santa Claus Admits He No Longer Believes Children Exist

But does Santa believe in you?
NORTH POLE (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript)-- With just three days remaining until his annual goodwill mission, Santa Claus admitted Wednesday that for almost two hundred years he's harbored growing doubts about the existence of children. St. Nick opened this morning's global press briefing on a surprisingly somber note, offering reporters a rare glimpse into the philosophical and spiritual conflicts that have troubled his soul since the end of the 1950s, when he first recognized his budding crisis of faith. Kris Kringle said: "I've been reluctant to talk about this, but I feel the time is right. A lot of dubious claims have been made, creating myths that just can't be justified in my mind. I've tried to rationalize them for years, but I can't continue living in a delusion." He then revealed that, among other things, no postal agency has ever delivered a single piece of mail to the North Pole.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Murdoch's News International Unveils Christmas Treat for Children Hoping to Get Messages to Santa

SAN NARCISO, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- Rupert Murdoch's News International paid restitutions to seven more prominent figures in the wake of the phone hacking scandal that brought down the News of the World tabloid. In a statement released Tuesday, the company said it had settled claims brought by Princess Diana's former lover James Hewitt, lawmaker Mark Oaten, model Abi Titmuss, theatrical agent Michelle Milburn, television personalities Ukrika Jonsson and Calum Best, and Paul Dadge, who helped rescue victims during the 2005 terrorist bombings in London. The scandal erupted after authorities discovered that journalists and private investigators on the Murdoch payroll had routinely hacked into the phones of celebrities, politicians, professional athletes and crime victims. Struggling to recover profits, confidence in leadership and public trust, CEO Rupert Murdoch announced today that his media empire would be giving back to society with a special holiday gift for the children of the world.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Christmas Parade Ends in Rioting and Accusations of Racism

SAN NARCISO, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- What was meant to be a cheery holiday celebration quickly turned to disaster as Bennington Vale’s annual Christmas Parade spiralled into an abyss of injuries and rioting, reminiscent of the week-long Walmart closure in May due to rennovations. Although city officials continue to investigate the causes of the problem, the key catalysts seemed to be the inadequate disposal of medical needles, misprinted signage and the misunderstood presence of San Narciso’s “Holiday Man.”

Sunday, December 18, 2011

After Prolonged Kim Jong Illness, North Korea's Dictator Has Died

PYONGYANG, North Korea (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- After a prolonged Kim Jong illness, North Korea's dictator died Monday of heart failure, according to the country's state-run media. He was believed to have suffered a serious stroke in 2008 and had become more reclusive as a result of the international community remarking on his frail demeanor. Recently, South Korean journalists who regularly monitor the situation in the North also described Pyongyang as operating under intense pressure to relieve problems that could upset the stability of its leadership: "North Korea and its people have been suffering under a terrible il-ness for many decades. Everybody living there has been infected with il-ness. But now the il-ness has passed." Domestic servants discovered Kim's body just hours after he retired to his palace study, where he donned a feather boa and ordered his aides to re-enact the film "Purple Rain" in their pajamas. Kim was 69.

Initial reports of Kim's death caused confusion among entertainers Mariah Carey and Charlie Sheen who had been invited to perform in the capital's royal theater. Carey frantically began posting on her Twitter account: "OMG, they just said Little Kim died in North Korea." When reporters corrected Carey by pointing out that Kim Jong-il -- a minuscule but tyrannical autocrat -- controlled North Korea and not Li’l Kim -- the popular American rapper -- Carey appeared visibly shaken and confused. When asked for his comments, Charlie Sheen claimed that he invented the schwa and said that his urine is made of stardust from Betelgeuse.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Remembering Christopher Hitchens, Seriously

EDITORIAL (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- Christopher Hitchens, a British born journalist and intellectual atheist, died Thursday of complications with esophageal cancer. He was 62. Of Hitchens, Vanity Fair wrote that he was an "incomparable critic, masterful rhetorician, fiery wit, and fearless bon vivant." Not only was Hitchens a passionate and acerbic journalist, he was a true war correspondent, often visiting the world's most dangerous places and not merely writing about them from the serenity of his office. He wasn't always accurate, he wasn't always agreeable, but his literary gifts and dedication to pointing out what he considered to be the truth were immeasurably important. Journalism for Hitchens wasn't a disguised marketing vehicle for corporations with deep ties to politics; he maintained the core values one often attributes to the art. Along the way, he carved out a reputation for barbed repartee, scathing critiques of public figures, and a fierce mind for reason.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Norwegian Teen Diagnosed with PTSD after Traumatic Tour of St. Nicholas' Tomb

LILLEHAMMER, Norway (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- Eager to celebrate the traditional festival of Saint Nicholas Day -- a largely European holiday that falls on December 6 -- Jurgen Enttauschungsohn, a teen-aged Santa Claus enthusiast, traveled from his home in Norway to the saint's birthplace in Turkey. "I's wanteds to honors the Christmas Mans in a deeply personals experience," Enttauschungsohn said. "I's hads no ideas whats was in stores for me. I wills nevers be the sames again." Workers at the historic preservation site told authorities that Enttauschungsohn collapsed and went into immediate shock at the conclusion of his tour. He is now recovering back home in Norway under medical supervision.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Annual Bennington Vale Christmas Parade Announcement

SAN NARCISO COUNTY PUBLIC ANNOUNCEMENT -- The Annual Bennington Vale Christmas Parade is scheduled for Saturday, December 17, 2011. Sidewalks CANNOT be reserved with personal property, which includes unattended children and the elderly, until 5:00 p.m. or 5:30 p.m. if center medians are used. The parade route spans Maxwell Street, Cape Horn Avenue and Tragic Courier’s Way, ending at Lake Inverarity’s Fangoso Lagoons. The estimated duration of the event is three hours. The placement of personal items along the parade route -- including your children, pets or virtually incapacitated senior citizens -- has in the past created pedestrian and motor vehicle traffic issues, in addition to numerous problems for local businesses. In an effort to prevent accidents or injuries, and in accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act, personal property or family members serving as human placeholders along the parade route prior to the street closures will be confiscated at the discretion of the San Narciso Police Department and taken to the Heritage Heights Library for pick-up after the event. Please note that all costs incurred from the caring of and cleaning up after your children or elderly will be cited back to you by the City.

The public is also reminded that the law strictly prohibits the following activities on City property, and appropriate action will be taken against anyone in violation. Please observe these rules during the event.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Jerry Sandusky's Reply to Brett Favre's Twitter Post May Incriminate Him in Molestation Case

BELLEFONTE, Pa. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- Jerry Sandusky, the former Penn State assistant football coach charged with over 50 criminal counts of sexual abuse against children, appeared in court Tuesday and then waived his right to a preliminary hearing. In doing so, Sandusky avoided a dramatic confrontation with the 11 witnesses present, which included a number of his alleged victims. Gasps could be heard throughout the courtroom when the judge announced the waiver. Some legal insiders interpreted Sandusky's decision as a sign that he might be considering a plea deal, even though the 67-year-old coach has maintained his innocence throughout the investigation. Deputy Attorney General Marc Costanzo said the waiver "helps the prosecution in a lot of ways," and that Sandusky's alleged victims would not have to testify twice in the case. But in an unlikely turn of events, a Twitter post from famed quarterback Brett Favre -- and Sandusky's rash response to it -- may have given the prosecution all the ammunition it needs to secure a conviction.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Lunar Scientist Explains Impossible Congressional Sight Following Saturday's Eclipse

SAN NARCISO, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- Saturday's lunar eclipse offered spectators the chance to witness a strange sight traditionally thought impossible. The unusual effect is known by astronomers as a "selenelion" and occurs when both the sun and eclipsed moon can be observed at the same time. However, celestial geometry dictates that this can't happen. The unique spectacle wowed people across the planet, although it paled in comparison to the even stranger but equally improbable announcement the next day by Republican leader Mitch McConnell, who told "Fox News Sunday" that Congress will somehow reach a bi-partisan agreement to renew the popular payroll tax cuts set to expire at the end of this month. As puzzled political analysts struggled to make sense of McConnell's statement, astronomer Parke Kunkle stepped in to explain how the same forces behind the selenelion were at play in Congress.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Rick Perry's Underaged Male Traveling Companion Shot Dead in Georgia Convenience Store

MACON, Ga. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- White House hopeful Rick Perry might not know how many branches of government there are, the national voting age, the number of U.S. states, the average quantity of toes on an Asian child, or how many Supreme Court Justices occupy the bench, but he knows that a secret cabal of gay-loving government Illuminati are killing prayer in school and open celebrations of Christmas by allowing homosexuals to serve in the military. "This administration's war on traditional American values must stop," Perry wrote in a statement issued to the press. "President Obama has again mistaken America's tolerance for different lifestyles with an endorsement of those lifestyles. I will not make that mistake. I'm gonna end this war. And the fastest way to stop an enemy is to take out its soldiers -- gays in the armed forces, in this case."

Thursday, December 8, 2011

American Airlines Now Cites Safety and Health Concerns for Booting Alec Baldwin From Flight

SAN NARCISO, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- Alec Baldwin's feud with American Airlines began on Tuesday when the carrier's representatives claim the "30 Rock" star refused to turn off his electronic device after the cabin doors closed. Using his Twitter account, Baldwin immediately wrote: "Flight attendant on American reamed me out 4 playing WORDS W FRIENDS while we sat at the gate, not moving. #nowonderamericaairisbankrupt." American Airlines' personnel countered by posting their version of events on Facebook. They said Baldwin fled to the plane's lavatory with his smart phone, slamming the door "so hard the cockpit crew heard it and became alarmed, even with the cockpit door closed and locked." The Facebook account also described Baldwin as rude, offensive and prone to calling the crew inappropriate names. Thursday, however, officials from American Airlines said the Facebook post failed to adequately address the serious safety concerns and health violations posed by Alec Baldwin.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Heartless Banker Potter Saves Bedford Falls from Subprime Lender George Bailey

BEDFORD FALLS, N.Y. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- With the holiday shopping season in full swing, Americans are refocusing their attention on the embattled economy. The news has been neither surprising nor welcoming. Regulators seized 157 banks in 2010, the most in any year since the savings and loan crisis two decades ago. Those failures cost nearly $23 billion. Two more financial institutions were closed in November by federal regulators, bringing the total number of U.S. failed banks this year to 90, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation said. More shocking, however, was the announcement that officials had seized the assets of and shuttered the famed Bailey Savings and Loan in Bedford Falls on Tuesday.

Representatives from the FDIC said the example of George Bailey -- the kind-hearted and altruistic proprietor of Bailey Savings and Loan -- provides glaring proof of how good intentions so often pave the way to Hell.

Monday, December 5, 2011

More Troubles for Herman Cain as FOX Television Cancels Biopic

SAN NARCISO, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- Sharon Bialek, the first of many women to go public with accusations of sexual harassment against Herman Cain, called the former presidential candidate’s drop from the race a “vindication.” Cain announced that he was suspending his campaign last week after another woman came forward with allegations of a long-term extramarital affair in which she was the mistress. Political analysts from all sides have been left to speculate whether Cain will resume his bid or give another candidate, potentially Newt Gingrich, his endorsement. Pundit Ferrel Michaels opined: “Cain’s support of Gingrich could really solidify votes from conservative Christian adulterers, who would otherwise have no place to turn. Cain has enough hate in his heart to be a good evangelical, but his ethnicity has long posed problems for this particular group. Certainly, though, his experience as a serial cheater may help push Gingrich loyalists past their racism.”

Friday, December 2, 2011

Letter to the Editor: Thanks Congress for Killing the Dangerous Payroll Tax Cut Program and Saving America

By Clayton Chiclitz, Yoyodyne CEO

Dear Republican Congresspeople,

It is with indescribable joy and relief that I write to thank you for preserving the America I have worked so hard to advance, by striking down the president’s wholly misguided, deplorable and dangerous payroll tax relief program. Not only were these meatier paychecks creating a detrimental sense of entitlement among our workers, the options presented to Congress amounted to nothing short of liberal strong-arm tactics. Extortion! The way I see it, you had two choices: one, let these ridiculous cuts expire and restore (not raise, mind you) the $1,000 in revenues you lost this year per each American family; or two, extend and even expand the cuts for over 160 million people to the mournful tune of $1,500 per household. You chose option A. You made the right business decision.

American Airlines Denies Killing Passenger with Horrible Food

MIAMI, Fla. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- The embattled operators of American Airlines, who recently filed for bankruptcy, now face a lawsuit from the family of a passenger who died of a heart attack aboard one of their flights earlier this year. Relatives of Othon Cortes, the victim, accused the carrier of allowing Cortes to board a connecting flight to Miami from JFK International while visibly ill. They blamed food poisoning for his condition. According to the lawsuit, Cortes died on May 18 after eating a meal during the Barcelona-to-New York leg of his trip. The complaint further alleged negligence on the part of American Airlines for failing to provide medical attention and waiting too long to perform an emergency landing.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

LA Police Mobilize to Clear Occupy LA Protesters, Area Rapists Grateful for the Break

LOS ANGELES, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- In the early hours of Wednesday morning, more than 1,400 Los Angeles police officers, some in riot gear and HAZMAT suits, mobilized in force to clear the Occupy LA protesters from their camps in the park around City Hall. More than 200 demonstrators were arrested in the mostly peaceful eviction. As officers flooded the area just after midnight to dismantle the two-month old camp, Police Chief Charlie Beck praised the LAPD and the protesters for their restraint. But critics of the police action, including some City Council members, found the presence of riot gear and HAZMAT suits superfluous. They also took issue with the massive concentration of officers deployed to the scene, which totaled nearly 15 percent of the overall force. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa stood by the decision and reiterated the need for adequate back up. Surprisingly, he found unexpected allies among the city’s criminal population. Area rapist and unregistered sex offender, Luther Earle Waylon, boasted that Wednesday morning had been the most productive day he’s worked since Rush Week 2009 when UCLA raised tuition, leaving fewer witnesses loitering around the campus.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Amid Ginger White Scandal, Herman Cain Reassesses Campaign but Vows to Reach Out and Tap Female Base Harder than Ever

SAN NARCISO, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- Embattled presidential hopeful Herman Cain told his staffers Tuesday that he is reassessing his campaign after allegations surfaced Monday about a 13-year affair he carried on with a Georgia woman named Ginger White. Many analysts have already written Cain off as a viable contender, leaving him to fester at the bottom of the heap with Rick Santorum, who recently embarked on a new tour across the nation to ask voters if they knew whether he was still running in the GOP race.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Area Mayor Authorizes Use of Deadly Force Against Occupy Protesters, Citing Internal Terrorism

SAN NARCISO, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- Although the mayor’s office released a public apology Friday for the accidental pepper-sprayings and beatings sustained by Black Friday shoppers whom police had mistaken for Occupy protesters, county officials announced Monday that more severe tactics will be used to suppress the demonstrations. “Dreadful as the incident was,” said Mayor Manny DiPresso, “it validated that the Occupy movement has become a more dangerous threat to San Narciso than originally believed. I’ve been consulting with F. Chester Greene, our own Republican candidate for president, who has proven to me that these protests are nothing short of internal terrorism. In fact, only two of the ten Occupy SN protesters have been verified as county residents. That means other factions are invading our town in a violent attempt to undermine our economy and our way of life. At this point, we can’t ignore the fact that nothing differentiates these radicals from the terrorists who masterminded 9/11. They will be treated accordingly.”

Friday, November 25, 2011

Hundreds of Shoppers Pepper-sprayed After Police Confuse ‘Black Friday’ Campers with Occupy Protesters

SAN NARCISO, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) --Horror befell the suburban serenity of Bennington Vale late Thursday night when police mobilized after a Thanksgiving dinner sponsored by Yoyodyne Financial Services to suppress Occupy San Narciso demonstrators as they slept. SNPD spokesman Ren Williams explained: “This has become routine procedure around the country. There are fewer protesters about late at night, which makes it easier to infiltrate their camps and expel them.”

“We certainly support the rights of citizens to peaceably assemble,” Williams continued, “but as the CEO of Yoyodyne Inc. astutely pointed out, overnight camping is illegal in the county. It’s also a very serious crime, under the category of vagrancy. Often times, we’re required to hold down sleeping campers, pry their mouths open and shoot pepper spray down their throats. Otherwise, they’ll keep right on sleeping and breaking the law.”

Civil Rights Demonstrators Trampled to Death in ‘Black Friday’ Misunderstanding

SAN NARCISO, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- Five members of a small and sometimes militant African American rights group in San Narciso County were trampled to death Friday outside the Gottsgeld department store in Santa Calcetines’ Buffum Plaza Mall. The concept for the protest was born when national broadcasting station TBS announced that it would be showing “The Wizard of Oz” on what is commonly known as Black Friday -- the day after Thanksgiving when retailers unveil their biggest bargains of the year. According to Lionel Tyrone Lincoln Green -- the head of San Narciso’s Angry Black Revolutionaries Against Caucasian Aristocracy, Despotism and Black Repression Association (ABRA CADABRA) -- the Thanksgiving holiday represents one of the worst examples of white oppression and entitlement in America next to San Narciso County itself.

Area Historians Discover Thanksgiving Day Also Origin of American Penal Tradition

“The first feast, so to speak, may also have been the nation’s first Last Meal.” -- Abel Wharfinger

SAN NARCISO, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- Although the modern Thanksgiving holiday tradition in America traces its roots to the seventeenth century, historians believe earlier celebrations existed on the continent as far back as 1598, when Spanish explorers in Texas gave a feast of thanks at San Elizario. Similar events were also documented in the Virginia Colony. Abel Wharfinger, the dean of History at San Narciso College, said: “The Pilgrims likely witnessed a type of Thanksgiving feast prior to their journey overseas while they were staying in Leiden. There, annual services were held to observe the end of the 1574 siege. This event probably served as the influence for the holiday we now celebrate. Although our Thanksgiving is not entirely original, we’ve recently discovered something about it that is.”

Thursday, November 24, 2011

President Obama’s Thanksgiving Day Pardon Decried by GOP as Blatant Abuse of Power

WASHINGTON, D.C. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- Republicans cried foul after President Obama held a press conference Wednesday at the North Portico of the White House to issue two Thanksgiving Day pardons. The ceremony drew protests from all of the 2012 GOP candidates, who decried the official order as an abuse of power. Obama tied the event to a series of executive actions he’s been taking recently to jump-start the economy, and which do not require congressional approval. “Well here’s another one: We can’t wait to pardon these turkeys,” the President said. After some initial confusion, Obama clarified that the turkeys in question were two flightless birds being spared their places on the holiday dinner table -- not Bernard Madoff, Jack Abramoff or Scooter Libby.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Musical Re-imagining of ‘Miracle on 34th Street’ Opens Today for Second Annual Run

SAN NARCISO, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- Today begins the second annual performance of The Tank Players’ original production, “Miracle on State Street.” The musical play, which runs through December 22 at the Buffum Plaza Arts Center in Santa Calcetines, re-imagines the holiday classic “Miracle on 34th Street,” but told from the perspective of a group of damaged people in contemporary Chicago. The McDonald’s Thanksgiving Parade, formerly The State Street Holiday Parade, provides the backdrop of the story, just as the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade propels the events that unfold in the film “Miracle on 34th Street,” which the theater’s owners have described as “the inferior and now cliché basis of The Tank Players’ show.” Performance times and ticket prices can be found at the venue box office, the Tank Players’ website and on our Community Events Calendar. Continue reading for a review of the play by contributing theater critic Delwyn Blodsnogger.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Ironic Herman Cain Gaffe Imperils ‘Pizza as Vegetable’ Budget Control Measure

SAN NARCISO, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- Last week, Congress incurred the ire of food activists, conscientious parents and the USDA by declaring that pizza is still “a vegetable” for the purposes of school nutritional guidelines. With the Super Committee at an unsurprising impasse and the economy continuing to stagnate, finding ways of cutting government spending remains at the top of lawmakers’ lists. During the financial crisis of the 1980s, then President Ronald Reagan tried to reduce school lunch funding by classifying ketchup as one of the required servings of vegetables. It was cheaper than broccoli, peas or greens, and children would eat it willingly. But as the Reagan Era of Reason gave way to the left-leaning lunacy of Bill Clinton and Barack Obama, spending returned to dangerous levels. Critics point to Clinton’s enactment of NAFTA, which allows cheap foreign farms to drive up the price of U.S. agriculture, and Michelle Obama’s anti-obesity movement, which mandates that children eat expensive produce, as the kind of pricey socialism ruining the country.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Moscow University Researchers Apologize for False Report of Lost Tolstoy Novel

MOSCOW, Russia (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- Researchers at Lomonosov Moscow State University reported Thursday the discovery of what they believed to be the notes for a lost Tolstoy novel, but admitted Friday that their celebrations were premature. Sergey Vissarionovich Vasiliev, the project’s leader, said a tourist from Crimea had purchased the two items at a used bookstore in Podolsk, a town in Moscow Oblast. She handed the documents over to the university for analysis days later, sensing they might be early drafts of a novel in progress by Tolstoy. Vasiliev said: “She seemed to be on to something. The manuscripts provided exquisitely tedious details of complex lineages, with an incomprehensible wealth of genealogical data that far surpassed the family histories [Tolstoy] created for ‘Anna Karenina.’ The intricate and sometimes onerous preponderance of historical data was presented with the stoicism one often sees in Russian literature, lending itself to our unique sense of existential dread and love of long, boring lists that span hundreds of pages. In our excitement, we failed to dissect the materials as diligently as we should have. As a result, we issued a false report.”

Vasiliev’s team apologized to the literary community after confessing that the two manuscripts turned out to be an old Saint Petersburg phone directory and a copy of the 1959 Soviet census.

(c) 2011. See disclaimers.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Demi Moore and Her Camera Salesman Husband Announce Divorce Plans

LOS ANGELES, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- Actress Demi Moore and her husband Ashton Kutcher, a commercial spokesman for a brand of inexpensive cameras, announced the dissolution of their six-year marriage Thursday, ending one of the most widely followed May-December romances in Hollywood. In a statement to the press, Moore said: “It is with great sadness and a heavy heart that I have decided to end my six-year marriage to Ashton. It’s difficult to be a woman, a mother and a wife. Honestly, having to be all three for one person has become a little creepy and spiritually exhausting.”

Get Off My Lawn! John McCain Predicts Rise of Third Political Party

SAN NARCISO, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- In 2008, then presidential candidate John McCain alluded to the rise of a third political party. More recently, the cantankerous Arizona senator, also known in some circles as “He Who Shall Not Be Named...President,” has hardened his views on the inevitability of a three party system. McCain said: “All these big government federalists, they’ve done nothing for the people. Well, we’re fed up with feds and fancy-pants fat cats.”

Some pundits who share McCain’s vision believe the conservative Tea Party will produce a viable presidential candidate, but McCain disagrees: “That’s a movement, not a party. Nothing to get excited about. But then again, at my age, having a movement is cause for a party -- if you know what I mean.”

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

‘Atlas Shrugged’ Film Producers Replace 100,000 DVDs Filled with Countless Errors

SAN NARCISO, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- Atlas Productions, the company behind the film adaptation of Ayn Rand’s “Atlas Shrugged,” agreed to replace 100,000 copies of the film’s newly released DVD after sickened fans discovered the discs riddled with errors, which led to a flood of vitriolic complaints that crippled the company’s servers for hours. One executive described the venomous correspondence as “so much hate it made Frank Miller’s opinion of Occupy Wall Street protesters seem quaint.”

Monday, November 14, 2011

Passengers and FAA Officials Outraged at Alaska Airlines ‘Knocking on Heaven’s Door’ Campaign

SAN NARCISO, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- Several Alaska Airlines travelers were shocked to open their meal trays and find copies of Psalm 9:2 staring back at them. Even as a private sector company, the air carrier accepts millions of dollars in tax payer money each year. Critics claim that passengers outside Judeo-Christian faiths may find the lack of separation of church and business offensive. However, representatives from the airline say the company has offered various biblical snippets on its flights for about 30 years. Summer Wren, a senior public relations officer for Alaska Air, explained: “An overwhelming majority of our customers have indicated they appreciate the gesture, and those who don’t are not forced to read it. Besides, most people in this country are Jewish or Christian. People of other faiths probably don’t speak English anyway, or are Muslim terrorists, in which case their reaction to seeing the psalms makes profiling just a whole lot easier.”

Wren elaborated that the fleet’s religious pamphlets now serve a mission critical business purpose, and should be taken seriously.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Occupy Protest Movement Claims Life in San Narciso County

SAN NARCISO, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- The small but steadily blooming Occupy San Narciso movement -- currently nine people strong -- has not been viewed by area police as much of a threat, and few businesses in the county have taken the ad hoc protests seriously. But that all changed Friday when a new faction of Occupy demonstrators claimed their first life near the Mendocino Falls district. The nine official Occupy SN members disavowed any affiliation with the group that killed an unlicensed produce vendor at the freeway on-ramp by Vineland, where Hobo Gardens -- the county’s dedicated, “extro-urban” transient community -- intersects the North Viaduct area -- the ownership of which San Narciso continues to dispute.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Penn State Board of Trustees Fires Joe Paterno; ‘Sick and Tired’ of Him Attracting Child Molesters, Liars and Rioters to the School

“It’s not about the terrible things these other people did, it’s about what Joe Paterno didn’t do.” -- PSU Board of Trustees

STATE COLLEGE, Pa. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- Beleaguered Penn State football coach, Joe Paterno, had anticipated ending his career at the end of the 2011 season. But the university’s Board of Trustees made the decision for him when they fired the legendary coach late Wednesday night amid growing public furor over the school’s handling of a child sex abuse case. Although PSU administrators allowed Jerry Sandusky, Paterno’s assistant coach, to fellate and sodomize young boys on campus between 1994 and 2009, and while they turned a blind eye to Athletics Department officials who hindered investigations into the case, the Board decided that Paterno represented the greatest threat to PSU’s recovery and should therefore serve as the face of the child abuse scandal.

“He’s just bad luck,” Board members announced, reading from a prepared statement Thursday morning. “Voodoo. And we don’t need that kind of obstacle in our way as we try to move past this tragedy and destroy Nebraska on Saturday. Go Lions!”

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Harry Potter Day at Disneyland Turns Hope to Tears with the Wave of a Wand

ANAHEIM, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- This past Sunday, November 6, marked the fifth unofficial Harry Potter Day at the Disneyland Resort in Anaheim, Calif. According to the organizer’s website: “Our event draws Potter fans from all over the Southland and far beyond for a day of mirth, mischief and magic! The elves are hard at work putting together this year’s festivities, which will include a scavenger hunt (of sorts) the likes of which you’ve never experienced before.”

Upon entering the park, costumed fans of the boy wizard franchise enrolled in “classes,” at which point they received their scavenger hunt lists. According to Disneyland representatives, the event was intended to help promote socialization among “potential pariahs and shut-ins.” For those Potter fans unlikely to fully integrate with American culture, Disney had also hoped to provide a nurturing platform to help them transition into the inevitable Renaissance Faire lifestyle awaiting them in their 40s. Unfortunately, a day meant for magic and merriment ended in tears and heartbreak.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Jerry Sandusky’s Literary Agent Sues Sexual Abuse Victims for Copyright Infringement over Memoir with Same Title as Sandusky Autobiography

STATE COLLEGE, Pa. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- Joe Paterno’s nearly half-century career as head coach of the Penn State football team will end soon following a child sex abuse scandal involving his assistant coach, Jerry Sandusky, who was arrested on seven counts of involuntary deviate sexual intercourse and numerous other charges, including aggravated indecent assault, corruption of minors and endangering the welfare of a child.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Catholic Church to Modernize Translation of Mass with “Intercontinental Missal 3.0”

SAN NARCISO, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- By November 27, Catholic parishes in English speaking countries will witness a small but pivotal revolution. After that date, church goers will begin using a new translation of the Roman Missal, the official instruction book for administering rites and prayers during the celebration of Mass. Confronted by centuries of criticism over shaky interpretations of texts not originally written in English, an international committee labored under a Vatican directive to more closely align phrasing and semantics to Latin. Dioceses around the globe are preparing wary priests and parishioners for one of the biggest transformations in Catholic worship since the 1960s, when the Second Vatican Council enacted several amendments in the liturgy to modernize Mass. But the announcement has met with backlash from countless members of the clergy, who claim that the nonsensical alterations will jeopardize the individual faithful’s “personal encounter with the Lord,” an expression the Church said will now be referred to as “deity detente and acculturation.”

Friday, November 4, 2011

Catholic Paper Claims Devil Controls Homosexual Attraction but Apparently Not Child Molestation

SAN NARCISO, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- The nation’s oldest Roman Catholic newspaper has riled gay rights groups by posting an editorial claiming that the devil may be responsible for homosexual attraction. The paper, which is run by the Archdiocese of Boston, concluded that “scientific evidence of how same-sex attraction most likely may be created provides a credible basis for a spiritual explanation that indicts the devil.” But religious LGBT advocacy groups condemned the piece as an extreme position promoting ignorance and bigotry, violating “a fundamental belief of our faith; that all people reflect the Divine image and are beloved by God.” They also found it hypocritical.

Texas Woman Pleads Guilty to Executing Six-Year-Old Criminal

SAN NARCISO, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- A woman from Irving, Texas, accused of killing her 6-year-old son and leaving his body on a Maine road pleaded guilty to second-degree murder Friday. Investigators said the woman killed her son at a New Hampshire motel, drove over the border to Maine in her pickup truck, and then left the body on the roadside, covered in a green blanket. The cause of death was ruled as asphyxiation. The suspect told police that she had dosed her son with cold medicine before smothering him with a pillow. She also stated that it took four minutes for the child to die.

When asked why she killed her son, the accused said, “I caught him stealing cookies from the cupboard. He was a criminal, so he faced the ultimate punishment. That’s how we do things in Texas. Perry for President in 2012!”

(c) 2011. See disclaimers.

Deadly Asteroid Hurtles Toward Earth as Black President Struggles with Economy, Film Loving Scientists Very Worried

SAN NARCISO, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- An enormous asteroid known by astronomers as 2005 YU 55 will pass closer to Earth than the moon this coming Tuesday, causing consternation and grave concerns for scientists. “It’s the first time since 1976 that an object of this size has passed this closely to the Earth,” said Leo Biederman, who made the grim discovery. “I’m very worried. Ever seen ‘Deep Impact?’ The economy is in the toilet, federal spending is out of control, all wages and prices are frozen, the first black president’s popularity is spiraling down the toilet as he vainly attempts to keep control, and the panicked population places all its hopes in some far-fetched venture called the Messiah to save them from a global-level catastrophe. Let’s just say I’m not making any plans after November 8.”

(c) 2011. See disclaimers.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Man Accused of Hacking Phones of Scarlett Johansson and Other Celebs Says He Was Simply Interviewing for News International Job

SAN NARCISO, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- A 35-year-old man from Jacksonville, Fla., was charged Tuesday with 26 counts of cyber-related crimes for hacking. The suspect was arrested on October 12 by federal agents after an 11-month investigation. His victims include Scarlett Johansson, Mila Kunis, Christina Aguilera, and additional people identified only by the initials B.P., J.A., L.B., L.S., D.F. and B.G. Because of the explicit nature of the photographs, authorities worry that the unnamed celebrities may turn out to be Beth Grant, J.J. Abrams, Larry David, Laura San Giacomo, Dave Foley and Brad Garrett. “If nude pictures of these individuals leaked to the press, I can’t imagine the extent of the damage. I’d say half of the American public would need some sort of grief counselling or PTSD treatment,” one FBI official said.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Ultrasound of Testicular Tumor Reveals Image of Man’s Face

Photo courtesy of Urology
SAN NARCISO, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- A local attorney, Randy Cowlmouse, shocked doctors at San Narciso County General on Wednesday morning when he came in complaining of extreme pain and swelling in one of his testicles. Dr. Samuel Saahboehns, the facility’s senior medical director, initially expected to find himself facing a case of severe epididymo-orchitis. “My urologists were fairly certain that ultrasound scans would locate a tumor of some kind, hopefully benign,” Dr. Saahboehns told reporters. “None of us was prepared for the image that appeared on the screen.” Indeed, all attending members of the staff described themselves as astounded to find a human face staring back at them.

“We’re still analyzing the face, which we extracted during the biopsy, but I think it proves an age old theory about men being controlled by their genitals. I mean, there’s a little man living in this patient’s testicles.”

Monday, October 31, 2011

San Narciso Community Haunted House Sure to Inspire Halloween Screams and Nightmares

SAN NARCISO, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- This year, the San Narciso County Chamber of Commerce is pleased to present the community’s first annual Haunted House Spooktacular, which will be admitting guests at 6:00 p.m. in the Lake Inverarity Social Hall. Tickets can be purchased at the door or on the venue’s website. According to event organizer Francis Baldhamer, “If you can’t afford to have the pants scared off of you, don’t wear any!”

Baldhamer also advised parents to exercise caution when bringing along children under the age of 12: “Because of some creepy thematic elements and frightening scenes, younger kids could be very upset.”

Violations of “We’re a Culture, Not a Costume” Could Result in Arrests Halloween

SAN NARCISO, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- The San Narciso Police Department is expected to be busy this Halloween enforcing citywide modesty bans on attire. Cross-dressing, wearing blackface, sexual innuendo, and anthropomorphization are a few of the behaviors that could result in fines or even prison time. “This is just another PC overreaction meant to punish the local business man,” complained Harold Paratestiez, owner of Harry’s Haunted Halloween Haberdashery and A.B.M.A.and L. “First, I was required to sell martial aids by prescription only. Then, I was told I could only advertise my store by acronym, not its actual name. Now this? I got into the All Hallows trade as a transition to a more family oriented business. This was going to be the first year we sold the Irwin Mainway line of children’s costumes.”

Friday, October 28, 2011

GOP Candidate Proposes Radical Innovation to TSA Puffers

SAN NARCISO, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- Given the current state of the nation’s economic woes and rampant unemployment rates, analysts have given a lot of consideration lately to what’s being called “the rise of the machines.” It’s not a new concept, attempting to automate worker functions to optimize processes. But in an era dominated by outsourcing jobs to foreign markets and finding ways to increase profits by using machines instead of human labor, continued efforts to mechanize the United States have met with renewed criticism. And love them or hate them, even TSA agents are feeling the brunt. A number of airports around the country have rolled out Explosive Trace Portals (ETPs), commonly known as “puffers.” But 2012 GOP presidential candidate F. Chester Greene called the machines pointless. He told reporters that he has a plan in place to put the “human” back in “human resources,” without compromising safety.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Record for Deadliest Biker Feud in Decade Broken Thursday Outside Southern California Starbucks

SAN NARCISO, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- A turf war between rival motorcycle gangs that erupted outside an area Starbucks has left several men dead, authorities say. Last year in Northern California, a similar territorial dispute broke out between the Hells Angels and Vagos motorcycle clubs, stirring fears of more bloodshed as key members from each gang went missing in three different states. That incident was ranked by state law enforcement as the most severe clash of biker groups in nearly a decade. Thursday’s brawl, however, surpassed the Hells Angels-Vagos fracas in terms of body count, even though San Narciso Police dismissed theories that the feuds were related. Said SNPD spokesperson Ren Williams, “Apart from taking place outside a Starbucks -- which is virtually impossible to avoid in any city nowadays -- there’s no correlation between the two events. Also, the role of Starbucks in the 2010 massacre was coincidental. Here, it was the catalyst.”

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Mind Blowing Touchdown by Newsman Mike Wallace Secures Steelers Victory Over Arizona

SAN NARCISO, Calif. (Bennington Vale Evening Transcript) -- In learning of Mike Wallace’s amazing catch during Sunday’s game between the Pittsburgh Steelers and Arizona Cardinals, which wowed fans across the country, our reporters could describe the spectacle only as a show stopping display of athleticism and surrealism. Halfway through the second quarter, with Pittsburgh repelled to its own five-yard line, Ben Roethlisberger fell back into his own end zone and hurled a deep pass to Wallace on the right sideline. Wallace, the 93-year-old former anchor of CBS staple “60 Minutes,” apparently caught the ball near the 40-yard mark and effortlessly sprinted up the sideline for a touchdown. Wallace ran over 95 yards, and Pittsburgh went on to win 32-20. When members of The Bennington Vale Evening Transcript asked CBS executives for their take on Mike Wallace’s presence in the game, they seemed puzzled and appalled. Sending the geriatric newsman into the game was a decision they chided as a “dangerous stunt.” Wallace’s age, struggles with health and complete inexperience as a professional athlete placed the journalism icon in a perilous position.

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