Funniness Negates Wrongness
Saturday, December 17, 2005
Getting Older...
As many of you know, I turned the big three-oh on Thursday. I'm old. Bah. Today I went shopping for the first time as an old man. Here's my shopping list for your amusement:

Wednesday, December 14, 2005
Misfortunate Headline... the Hudson Valley Times Record-Herald website:

Click here for the story
Damn Canadians
In October, residents of NYC reported smelling an odor throughout Manhattan that resembled that of maple syrup. No explanation for this smell could be found and it was soon relegated to the sidelines of the city's collective conscience. That is, until late last week, when residents once again awoke in the still of the night to the smell of breakfast wafting through Gotham.

What is this mystery smell? Where does it come from? To find out, SSW launched an investigation with our crack team of journalists and scientists. After laboring all weekend, we cracked the case. The overwhelming evidence points to a sinister Canadian plot to overthrow the US Government by destabilizing our economy by using the secret nerve gas formulation Maple B. The evidence is compelling:

Records obtained by our operatives in Ottawa show that during the Cold War, Canadian scientists developed a method of extracting nerve agents from one of Canada's chief natural resources--maple syrup. This agent, unlike most nerve agents, works subtly and over time, wearing down the exposed's desire to engage in complicated tasks and instead only think of pancakes and waffles.

Maple B is manufactured at the Canadian Forces Research Centre Facility 26-B on the outskirts of Regina, Saskatchewan. Satellite imagery obtained from Google Maps shows this facility:

Image redacted at the request/threat of the Government of Canada

This image was taken on July 17, 2005 at 1254 GMT. A direct link is here. In this image, the leftmost building is the manufacturing complex, while the four long, thin buildings are storage depots. Upon discovering the location of this facility in Canadian Government records, we immediately dispatched an agent to attempt to photograph the facility. He was able to transmit only one image via his INMARSAT satellite terminal before he was apprehended by Canadian Forces MPs and sent to a far north Yukon gulag to await trial on espionage. The US State Department is currently negotiating his release--let's pray for his soul.

The image that he was able to transmit clearly shows a tractor-trailer laden with pressurized cylinders of Maple B leaving the facility, no doubt heading towards the New York Metropolitan Area.

Notice the foreboding climate of Saskatchewan in winter.

After 9/11, the City of New York and the Department of Homeland Security deployed 694 Roucher Labs Series 715 Airborne Contaminate Detectors throughout Manhattan. Designed to measure such data as wind speed and direction, these units can detect contaminates at a concentration of only 2 in 1 million. Using data released at our request, we were able to plot the dispersement and concentration of the Maple B as it was released last Thursday. The detections of Maple B are show in red, overlaid on a satellite image of midtown Manhattan. The darker the color, the stronger the odor and higher the concentrations of Maple B:

Interestingly, the site with the strongest concentrations seems to be 1251 Avenue of the Americas, a building adjacent to the Rockefeller Center. 1251 Avenue of the Americas also happens to be home to the Consulate General of Canada. Coincidence? Unlikely. Especially when you see the last piece of evidence:

This photo of 1251 Avenue of the Americas was taken by a tourist (who asked not to be named) on Thursday, just as the smell of maple was at its strongest in midtown. Notice the brown haze around the top of the building? It is believed that this is damning evidence that secret vents in the upper floors of 1251 Avenue of the Americas are being used to disperse Maple B, and the brown haze is actually Maple B being released into the air.

What do we make of this? We at SSW condemn these acts by the Canadian Government and strongly encourage our government to react swiftly and decisively to defeat this threat to our north. Only then will peace come to North America. We urge you to immediately contact your congressperson and voice your opinion that the United States must immediately invade Canada.
Tuesday, December 13, 2005
Stanley "Tookie" Williams was executed in California today, having not been granted the clemency that so many expected Governor Schwarzenegger to give in his final hours, sparing him from the spectre of death. Many observers expected Schwarzenegger to grant him clemency as Williams had become a death penalty cause-celebre, with vocal opponents to his sentence crying out that Williams, despite being a murderer and founder of the Crips, had become a changed man in prison and deserved for his life to be spared.

Schwarzenegger denied him his life. Bravo.

But why did Schwarzenegger do so? Sparing Williams' life would've shored up his support on the left, something that is very important in liberal California. I'll tell you why he let Williams die.

I started doing some serious research last night, delving into the back stories of both Schwarzenegger and Williams. After hours of combing through public records, private testimonials and a couple of games of Tetris, I came across some startling information. As a serious journalist for a serious hardcore news website like SSW, I am obligated to share this information with the public, though I warn that my life might be in danger once this information is out in the public.

First, quick rundown of Williams' life story. Born December 29, 1953 in New Orleans, Williams grew up in South Central LA. In 1971, Williams, along with Raymond "Truck" Washington, formed the Crips with the intention--surprisingly--of keeping the streets safe by reducing violence and police brutality. Unfortunately, as they often do, good intentions soured and by the late Seventies, the Crips had disintegrated into a thug-ridden street gang. In 1979, Williams was convicted of the murders of Albert Owens, Tsai-Shai Yang, Yen-I Yang and Yee Chen Lin, which were committed during two separate robberies. While in prison for the last quarter-century, Williams has transformed himself from a thug into a noted advocate of non-violent gang-alternatives as well as a childrens' author (yeah, that's fucked up), as well as a Nobel Peace Prize nominee. Unfortunately for him and his supporters, just because you say that violence is bad and that gangs aren't a great idea and you wrote some kids' books doesn't erase the fact that you killed four people. So, on December 13, 2005, despite public outcry, Williams was put to death.

Arnold Schwarzenegger was supposedly born in 1947 in Austria. In the 1968, he supposedly immigrated to the United States, where he made a name for himself as a bodybuilder and as a Mr. Universe title holder. In the early Eighties, he broke into acting, which led to a career as the megastar of such movies as Conan the Barbarian, Predator, Kindergarten Cop and True Lies. In 1986, he married journalist Maria Shriver. In 2003, he became governor of California after Gray Davis was recalled in a special election.

Those are what the general public believes to be the facts. The general public is mistaken.

The truth is complicated, however. But I'll strive to tell it in a clear, concise and accurate way. First off, Arnold Schwarzenegger was not born in 1947. He is actually from the future. In his timeline, he was created on August 19, 2019 as a Cyberdyne Systems Series 800-850 Model 101 Terminator Robot. In this timeline, Gray Davis was never recalled as governor in 2003 and in fact remained in power until 2006, when he was murdered by Reginald "Juice" Newton, a member of the Bloods. In this alternate timeline, Davis had bowed under outside pressure and had granted Tookie Williams clemency from the death penalty. Three days after his schedule execution, an army of Crips gangmembers descended on California's Death Row, breaking Williams out of prison and spiriting him off to their secret Long Beach lair, where he regained his title as leader of the Crips. He was ready to exact his revenge on a society that had kept him locked up for 25 years, so he set about to create the ultimate Crip, genetically engineering super strong, super tough, moderately intelligent gang members. Hearing word of this, the Bloods embarked on their own campaign of genetic engineering. They also exacted their revenge on Gray Davis for allow Williams to live by assassinating him as he rode the Magic Teacup Ride at Anaheim's Disneyland with his grand-daughter.

The arms race between the Crips and the Bloods continued. Genetically-engineered super-bangers, as they were called, roamed the streets of America, resistant to bullets, pepperspray and Tasers, armed with Chinese-made weapons procured through connections in the Middle East. Violence spilled over into everyday citizens' lives--the murder rate skyrocketed. Soon gang skirmishes turned into battles which eventually turned into war. The Crips and Bloods both eventually obtained Russian-built tanks and helicopters. LA became a wasteland. The war spread. Vegas fell. Seattle. Detroit. Dallas. Houston. Eventually, the Bloods obtained a cache of Soviet "suitcase" bombs and used them to level Chicago, New York, Washington and Philadelphia. The US military was powerless to stop them as most troops were deployed overseas. The National Guard was childs play to them. The Canadian Forces tried to move in to help, but they were too, well, "Canadian" and didn't put up much of a fight. Mexicans rushed across the border to take advantage of the situation. Most of America burned. Everyday citizens, unable to rely on their own government, formed militias, holing up in the mountains and deserts, working together as a resistance movement. Most people fled to Canada, which had fortified the border with a modern-day Maginot Line. It kept most of the violence to the south.

A solution to the problem had to be found. Finally, a young American working with the Resistance named John Connor came up with the idea of sending a robot back in time to ensure that Tookie Williams was executed by California, which would ensure that the super-bangers were never created and would alter the timeline. A robot built by Cyberdyne Systems of Hamilton, Ontario was procured and the experimental Time Transport System at the University of Western Ontario in London was used to send the robot back in time to 1968, armed only with an Austrian passport and a mission to become popular enough with the people of California to be elected governor and ensure that Williams would die.

That mission was fulfilled this morning. We, as Americans, can breathe a sigh of relief that we only face a future of violence from "regular" gang members and not the spectre of an army of genetically-engineered super gangstas destroying our way of life, rather than just making it inconvenient.
Monday, December 12, 2005
Money Shot
Is it just me, or does the image on this Ivory Coast (Côte d'Ivoire for you technical fucks) bank note look like the guy is wielding an ejaculating elephant penis?

Be Careful Out There...
Any body ever been subjected to a blind date? Just wondering, because I haven't. I often wonder if it's because my friends have no one worthy of me or if they feel that I'm not worthy of women that they could hook me up with.

The sad thing is I have a sneaking suspicion it might be the latter one.

In the end, anyhow, it's a moot point. I wouldn't go on a blind date if I had to. Too much of a chance of being set up with a hosebeast (I'm not entirely sure what a hosebeast is, but it sounded funny). I've heard too many horror stories about blind dates to want to be involved in one. In fact, there seems to be a few trends that pop up in the stories I've heard.

To wit,

1) Beware if your mutual friend says that "she's got a great personality" or "he's got a great sense of humor". These are warning signs, meaning "she's fat and ugly and giggles too much" or "he collects comic books and quotes Monty Python a tad too much".

2) They want to meet some place dark and smoky. This more than likely means they have either a hideous skin condition or all their clothes are covered in stains. Inexplicable stains, which are an instant deal-breaker.

3) Your mutual friend describes them as a freelance-anything. Freelance writer. Freelance actor. Freelance rocket scientist. It doesn't matter--don't. "Freelance" is a code word for "unemployed". And I'm not talking "just got laid-off and is looking for a job" but "has been without a real job for so long that they haven't had to wear nice clothes since the Clinton Administration". These people are leeches that will suck your money and your lifeblood right out of you.

4) Has kids and wants more. This is code for "looking for a daddy for my baby". Yeah, you'll get laid on the first date, but don't believe it when she says "it's okay, I'm on The Pill", because she's not. She's trying to get knocked up so she can entrap you.

5) Your mutual friend shows you a "glamour" shot. You know what I'm talking about...these places in the mall that have names like "Hollywood Photo" and "Movie Star Studios". These places can make the most hideous of people look like a perfect-skinned, sexy celebrity by using three main methods: a) smear a whole jar of Vaseline on the lens, which blurs out any skin imperfection, b) use an anamorphic lens to almost-imperceptibly squeeze the image in a bit to make the subject look thinner, and c) have the subject put there hand somewhere on their face, such as the chin or the cheek--this is an instant facelift that naturally disguises second chins, blemishes or those scars from when Tom Sizemore put his Kools out on her.

As an example, I hunted down a picture of John Merrick (aka The Elephant Man) that was taken in his home on August 8, 1888. Next to that, I have placed a "glamour" photo taken on May 13, 1889 at Smythe's Glamour Photos on Surrey Lane, London that judiciously used Vaseline as well as other techniques to make the Elephant Man look almost normal.

So, there you have it. Reasons to be wary of blind dates. That said, anyone wanna hook me up?