Archive for the 'satire' Category



25
Mar
09

A direct message to Yoko Ono: Imagine there’s no Twitter

Ummm… please don’t tell anyone, but I’m on Twitter.

Don’t worry, I hardly ever tweet and have nowhere near the 20-thousand-plus updates like some people I know only via blogging, so my well-entrenched social media avoidance disorder is still intact.

But the other day I somehow realised while playing around on the Twitter directory wefollow.com that with a click of a button I could actually follow Yoko Ono, so I am now doing so.

Since Yoko doesn’t update her status regularly, I soon forgot I was following Ms. Ono. But then, as if in a dream I’d won a lottery I hadn’t even played, the next day I received this bold-faced line in my email inbox:

You have a direct message from Yoko Ono

Yoko, I really, really appreciated your sending me your direct message of Peace, love and understanding. It filled me with great joy to know that despite the asymmetric nature of our budding relationship – you – famous billionaire, me – almost famous wage slave – for the mini-micro-nanosecond that your automatically generated packets flitted down the intratubularities, your message was from you to me and for me alone.

twitter-yoko-ono-john-lennon-updateIt kind of made me feel like the guy who must have felt while saying, as you tweeted not long ago:

“May I shake hands with the hand that shook hands with John Lennon?”

So in honour of my status as Yoko Ono Twitter follower number 15,482, may I now re-write the song that you must have sung with John Lennon?

By the way, did you know that on that horrible day in December, 1980 when he was so tragically taken from us, I was on a traveller’s high, bouncing from wadi to beach camp in the Sinai desert on a jeep excursion? That we didn’t find out about it until nearly a week later when on our return to Eilat we overheard some people in a bar at the next table shaking their heads about it all while Imagine played in the background?

I’m not famous, so you wouldn’t know that.

Anyway, Yoko. Just…

Imagine there’s no Twitter
If it won’t make you cry
No breakfast updates
To make us all ask why
Imagine all the people
Living off the Net

Imagine there’s no blogging
It isn’t hard to do
Nothing to post or download
And no viruses too
Imagine all the spammers
Boiled alive in grease

You may say I’m a Luddite
But I’m not the only one
I hope someday you’ll log off
Go outside and have some fun

Imagine there’s no MacBooks
I wonder if you can
No need for feeds or iPhones
Or upgrading your LAN

Imagine sharing music
By trading old vinyl…

You may say I’m on Twitter
Pointless updates one-by-one
I just signed up to join the crowd
And realise it’s not much fun

11
Mar
09

Open letter to German Chancellor Angela Merkel asking for €250 for my old bike when I buy a new one

From: some blogger

To: Angela Merkel, The Chancellery, Berlin.

Subject: Giving €2500 to Germans to scrap their old cars if they buy a new one.

Dear Angie,

May I call you Angie? It’s just that I feel so close to you now that I have one of your Barbie Dolls. I was going to give it to my daughter, but since she’s not into them and they did such a flattering job on those thunder thighs I thought I’d keep it for myself.

Anyway, about those cars. I think it’s a great idea to give everyone here in Germany €2,500 to scrap their old car if they buy a new one. Prop up Opel through the back door, get those junkers off the road, a little jiggery-pokery by the dealer and maybe with a bit of luck you’ll see the ol’ beater again on your travels after it’s been sold off for a profit in Eastern Europe or Africa. We’ve thought of doing it, but even though our car is about 15 years old, we figure it’s good for another 100,000 km if we treat it right, so why bother?

Instead, I thought that since I’m in desperate need of a new bicycle to get to and from work, you might extend the favour to cyclists by giving us a few bucks too?

I love my old bike, Ange. We go back 15 years to my Hong Kong days, but it’s on its third set of front and back sprockets, the front and rear bearings once, two sets of new gears, brakes, cables, rims, spokes, tires – the works. The only thing left from the original bike is the frame, the forks, the handlebars and a few scratches.

ian-wheeler-mountain-bike-serratus-panier-hong-kong

Since the new bike I lust for is going to cost between €1,500 and €2,000, I figure if you’re throwing €2,500 of my tax money at people willing to spend €15,000 to €20,000, we could just lop off a zero on both sides and both of us can go home happy.

I know what your thinking. You’re rolling those sweet, droopy eyes that look so good on television and thinking: yeah, right. Why should you care about cyclists? We don’t buy that high-tax gas, so we don’t contribute anything to the German state. We don’t provide workers with high-paying jobs, we’re always whining for more bike paths, and when we get home we drip sweat on the carpet.

But I figure I’ve saved the planet about five tonnes of carbon over the past decade by refusing to buy a car. In fact, I’ve probably saved it about 5,000 tonnes because I haven’t chartered a helicopter to get to work each day. When you think about it, I could sell you carbon credits for that trip to Greenland you made a while back to traipse around on the ice and say: It’s melting! It’s melting! Let’s do something!

So whaddya say, Angie babe? Instead of caving into the unions and the auto lobby and propping up the last legs of an industry that only holds us hostage to this unsustainable petroleum- and metal-addicted vampire economy, how about living up to the Germans’ worldwide reputation as people who actually care for the environment and help out those of us who choose the most sensible form of transportation so we can do just that? I promise to donate the money to research into alternative forms of energy.

Yours sincerely,

Ian in Hamburg

06
Jan
09

Do you suffer from Social Media Avoidance Disorder?

Psychiatrists and researchers compiling the update of the American guidebook to mental disorders and treatment have had to make room for a new malfunction for people who just couldn’t be bothered with social media.

“It’s really become prevalent over the past couple of years as social media has taken hold,” said Cologne therapist Nutsin Parks.   “Wtwitter-i-send-pointless-little-messagesith the explosive growth of social media sites like Twitter, those who don’t want to join are beginning to look like real losers.  It’s our duty to help them.”

Called SMAD for Social Media Avoidance Disorder, researchers are trying to pin down a set of diagnostic criteria so that health professionals can more easily spot the disorder.

Among the biggest red flags is a stubborn refusal to quit blogging.

“Look, blogging is just so 2004, OK?,” said Thad Ramjum Dab, a radio personality.  “It has to be, because I read it in Wired.  They know everything.”

Dab is referring to a recent Wired article which declared that if you’re still blogging, you’re a complete and utter waste of skin, because everybody is now on Facebook, AssCrack, LinkedIn, FlippedOut, and Twitter.

After bursting on the scene early last Tuesday, Twitter is the fastest-growing social media platform, with between 5,000 and 10,000 new accounts every day.   Twitterers are in a race to be the one who compiles the most stalkers followers. Your followers can find out the latest on what you’re doing whenever you post, called a tweet.

“If you have fewer than 1,000 Twitter followers, everyone thinks you’re boring and really should get a life,” said Twitter enthusiast Drather B. Haffinseks.  “I have nearly 6,000 and that figure is jumping every day.”

A survey of the most frequent utterances on Twitter include “Is this working?” “Stuck in traffic on the way to the mall,” and “Just got spittle on my iPhone while brushing my teeth.”

“I get people all the time these days coming into my office and complaining they can’t figure out why in hell anyone in their right mind would want to waste their time on an iPhone letting strangers on the other side of the world know they’re about to order a hot pastrami sandwich on rye,” said Amy Osborn, a therapist in Truth or Bum’s Rush, Texas.

“I tell them, look.  The first thing you have to realise is that it’s just like blogging, only shorter and more pointless.  Sometimes I see a light go on, but with most, we know we have a long and painful journey ahead of us.”

Recent reports of a major Twitter password hack allowing miscreants to post joke tweets from celebrities and news sites only confirms the platform’s arrival.  Psychiatrists say the longer those suffering from SMAD continue to indulge their avoidance, the worse off they’ll be.

Just look at this poor sap,” said a   “He’s signed up, but hasn’t the faintest idea why.  You can tell by the fact he’s not been posting at least 80 times a day.  Any fewer than that and we start to get worried.”

This Definitely Not the Daily News update not brought to you by the makers of Prozac.

30
Nov
08

Dr. Seuss asks Roald Dahl: whatever happened to The Leaky Brain?

The other day I searched in vain
For some sign of The Leaky Brainthe-leaky-brain-call-me

This lady, see, was so much fun
Among my reads was number one

The first I’d go to in my reader
Some days I’d wish I could go meet her.

But then one day near end of summer
She stopped posting.  What a bummer!

Did she get a fake ID
And go to live up in BC?

She failed to leave a mail address
Along her sidebar.  Such a mess!

I wonder if she’s still alive!
Not long ago she did survivethe-leaky-brain-acrobat-photoshop

A dive into the world of porn
We all laughed.  But then one morn,

She up and left.  Came back no more,
She only left an open door,

For comments still come far and wide
Though nowadays no source of pride.

Oh I know.  Just let me guess…the-leaky-brain
She’s found those candies in her dress

But choked on one while a-composing
Another post that’s based on hosing

Hunky guys who wear no shirt
Just another daytime flirt.

Or did those strippers she made fun of
Catch up with her and give her some of

That rice that she was yelling for?
Tell me please.  It’s such a bore

That I can’t find my Leaky Brain
Since she’s not here my life’s a pain.

Maybe she’s in North Korea
With Kim Jong-Il, caught diarrhea

Or is she now a Twitter victim?
In two-line bursts, her wit and wisdom

Lost among the pointless chatter
Of many things that do not matter.

Then again, she is a teacher.
Could it be that, like a preacher,

She had to keep her nose quite clean
Until the day her blog was seen

By the chairman of the school board
Who looked unfavour’bly toward

A teacher unafraid to show her cooter
Instead of teaching kids computer?

Although some blogs have had a boost
From their authors getting dooced

It seems our Leaky Brain has flown
Leaving me to sit and moan.

The web is full of jokes and stuff
Crap and garbage and plain fluff

‘Tis rare originality
Pokes through all that banality.

So if you find The Leaky Brain
The one whose drips were quite insane

Tell her to send a signal flare
Some sign of life.

Because

I

Care.

29
Aug
08

Watch out for bird-watchers watching bird porn

Our crack reporting team at Definitely Not the Daily News is back from the Beijing Olympics just in time to bring us a startling revelation about starlings, seed, and doing it in the bushes.

by Aywatsa Madder

Denver (DNTN) They may look like an innocent elderly couple dressed in tweed, felt hats and rubber boots out for a day of bird-watching, but they may have more in mind than hoping for a rare glimpse of a pair of Great Tits.

According to the authorities at stopbirdporn.org, a lot of bird-watchers are out there not to watch the birds, but to watch the birds go at it.

“Basically they go into the woods with binoculars and they watch birds mate,” said stopbirdporn organiser Olga Fochyaself in a Definitely Not the Daily News Youtube exclusive interview during the group’s protest march at the Democratic Convention. “Some species are sensitive to that and they’re being endangered by being watched while mating. Plus those older people, they make porn, and if you google “bird porn” on the internet, you’ll find a lot of it. And it’s growing.”

Behind-the-scenes reaction gleaned from underground sources beneath the post in the comments revealed a surprisingly sober reaction to the campaign.

“You guys are nuts,” said one punctuationally challenged birwatcher. “I have been watching birds for years and never saw any mating,and if I did, it would not turn me ,or any normal person on. the person responsible for this website and any real ads should be locked up in the nut house.”

Birdman went further:

I like looking at birds. The other day I saw 2 toucans getting it on on the Discovery Channel. The size of those beaks made my toes curl and made my hair stand on end. It was such a beautiful thing and I wish I could have taped the footage. I’m looking at Kiwis now! So kiss my bird lovin ass, bitches!

Perhaps you could help this guy out:

To all the above posters,
I’m Gabe Oppenheim, a Washington Post writer currently considering a story about this “movement.” I’d like to interview people who have been handed flyers or have witnessed the protests. My office phone number is 202-334-6367. Please don’t hesitate to call (and to leave a message, if I’m away from my desk). I appreciate your help.
Best,
Gabe

And finally, one commenter seems to have hit the nail on the head:

We found this in the Express newspaper this morning, we are pretty sure this is a prank, or some lame form of viral marketing, where the product will be revealed to us eventually.

28
Aug
08

The bearded queen that’s always on top

Regular readers may be excused for not knowing what the hell I’m talking about when I say that this blog is really two blogs in one.

On the one hand, it’s the nearly 200 posts since mid-January, 2007 that have come barking down the WordPress puppy mill at this address, along with the various pages and fiddly sidebar doo-dads few bother to click on but have come to expect when you stumble upon an everyday non-stick, peel-off, biodegradable, low-calorie passive-aggressive blog such as this.

On the other hand, there’s one post that regular readers have probably forgotten but which sets itself apart from the rest. One post that almost since its completion one cold, dreary day back in early December last year has drawn more than 200 times the hits, generated more comments and attracted more meet-’em-in-the-park crazies than nearly any other you’ll find here.

It’s the one making fun of some scam email where the so-called writer poses as a representative of the Queen Elizabeth’s Foundation, an organisation that does various good deeds for needy people in more places than I care to mention or bother to link to.

On the face of it it’s really hard to figure out why it’s so popular. One read-through and you think…meh. The concept’s been done before, and the jokes? As a great man might have said:

Sir, your post is both funny and original. Unfortunately, the original parts are not funny, and the funny parts are not original.

Seriously, I consider it a mediocre effort. A far cry from the gut-splitting one-liners I’d imagined coming up with as I got the idea for the post cycling home from work.

So what’s bringing them all in?

Is it the scandalous depiction of Canada’s beloved sovereign wearing the unmistakable facial attribute of a male, hinting at what might lie below?

Or is it the mistake in the headline? In another brilliant example of my aversion to research and chronic state of sloth, I adopted the scammer’s mistake by leaving out Elizabeth’s all-important apostrophe-s in the headline. So for months Google has been coughing up that post as high as the highly-coveted Number One Result Position when searchers wrongly type in Queen Elizabeth Foundation.

Not bad, eh? Try it yourself and see. Type in Queen Elizabeth Foundation into Google and see what you get. Do it many, many times and maybe you’ll help push it back up from the number three where it is now. :-)

Speaking of bizarre visitors, I’m sure you aren’t one of them, but some guy calling himself a private investigator and who lives in his mother’s basement in Toronto definitely is.

Sans-merde Sherlocque really didn’t like the off-hand way I told a commenter that the stupidest thing anyone could do would be to send the scammers any money.

Of course he had to point out that it’s your identity they’re after, and in no uncertain terms in subsequent comments made it plain that I am indeed the lowest form of ill-informed pond-scum ever to disgrace the Internet, and furthermore … Well, at this point my eyes kinda glazed over, but you can take a look for yourself. For maximum impact, read them all.

I dunno – maybe I was a little too polite to him? He says he’s a fellow Canadian, after all.

Perhaps on a flight to Hamburg this very minute. Whoa.

23
Jun
08

George Carlin no longer saying seven words you can’t say on television

I’m sure he wouldn’t take offense to that.

To the man whose album Occupation: Foole I can rattle off by heart simply because at the age of 12 I listened to it so much and who died Sunday in Los Angeles of heart failure: we’ll miss you.

On a long ride in my brother Gordon’s pick-up truck between Calgary and North Battleford, Saskatchewan in the summer of 2005 the hours became shorter and the laughs louder with every single track on the George Carlin MP3s he’d downloaded and burned onto CD.

Who says downloading is draining off artists’ sales? I was so happy to hear George Carlin again, I went out and bought two of his books when I got back to Vancouver: Brain Droppings and Napalm and Silly Putty. Still laugh when I take them off the shelf for another look.

Not his most famous routine, but a good one:

03
May
08

if facebook were real life

My Facebook usage has followed a path typical of millions:

Curiosity.

Sign-up.

Enthusiasm.

Disappointment.

Boredom.

Scrabulous.

Yep. After eight months, all I ever use it for is to play Scrabulous. Why? This will give you a clue. Enjoy.

01
May
08

ipod mini discovery stuns archaeologists

This Definitely Not the Daily News special report is dedicated to Azahar of casa az fame, who is today celebrating the start of her third year of blogging and who a few weeks back in the midst of a tech consumption frenzy stopped to ask me, “What’s an iPod mini?”

by Elmer Schmedlapp
Seattle (DNTN) A team of archaeologists is attempting to decipher the contents of a recently discovered iPod mini to see if knowledge contained on the ancient device can give scientists insights into lost technologies and long-forgotten music listening practices.

The mini, which apparently fell behind the bookshelf of Walla Walla, Washington resident Wanda Woodsworth while Woodsworth was out walking one wet Wednesday in winter, 2005, had been given up for lost ever since.

Woodsworth recovered the long-dead Apple product last week while moving furniture.

“It had been so long, I didn’t recognise it for what it was at first” said Wordsworth, “so I phoned the university. They got really excited, told me not to touch it until experts could identify it, then evaluate its contents. “


The mini was a sleek, brushed-metal device which first appeard in January, 2004. It was suddenly pulled from the market 20 months later by iPod maker Apple because its relatively small 4 or 6GB size and miniature hard drive storage system was deemed “so last Thursday” by a bunch of 20-something shitheads sitting around a table at Silicon Valley focus group session.

“It was like, meh, whatever, get rid of it, you know?” said Charles “Chuck” Biscuits, a group member. “We thought, hey, like, you know. Yeah.”

Apple abandoned the mini barely six months after releasing a second-generation model amid cries of protest from Apple store salespeople, who this reporter can assure you once told him the mini was the best iPod ever produced.

“It was such a perfect design, easy to read display, great heft to it in the palm of your hand,” said Apple store owner Filbert McNutt. “Sure their battery life sucked, but if it died, you still had one great-looking paperweight. We were selling them so fast, we couldn’t stock ‘em, and then – Bang! Gone. I forget what they even looked like.”

One scientist at the university lab where the mini is being dissected said her team is excited at what they might find on the ancient personal audio player.

“The world has just so moved on since 2004,” said researcher Marla Baverstock. “To think that the ancients were actually willing to pay good money for iPods with monochrome displays, no video capability, and a spinning hard drive! How utterly desperate those times must have been.”

Cultural anthropologists are also looking forward to analysing the song selection stored on the mini’s drive. They say it’s an artefact which will give clues as to how the world might have been enjoying some down time while contemplating the horror of another four years of the George W. Bush administration.

“It was a unique time for music, pop culture, and world history in general,” said ET cultural and sexual deviations beat reporter Adda Dictomy.

“The number of people with a close-up view of Britney Spears’ and Paris Hilton’s crotch was still in the low four figures instead of the billions now thanks to the Internet, Anna Nicole Smith was still trying to convince everybody that her years of wiping the bum of a billionaire 70 years her senior was out of sheer love, SUV drivers were bitching about gas prices half the level they’re at now and people living in trailer parks and working at Burger King were being flim-flammed into half-million dollar mortgages so they could live in their dream home for a few months, then have it pulled out from under them.

Gosh, those were the days.”

© 2008 lettershometoyou

27
Mar
08

Former US Attorney general Ashcroft has heart attack in Hamburg

Moin-moin liebe Bild.de Leser!!!

Keine hat die Bilder entdeckt?  Glauben Sie nichts, was in Bild steht!!!

 

We have once again roused our reporter out of hibernation for another Definitely Not the Daily News world exclusive.

By Kathy Kitzler

Hamburg (DNTN) Former US Attorney General John Ashcroft has suffered what appears to be a heart attack while on a personal visit to the northern German port city of Hamburg.

Ashcroft, whose brilliant career at the US Justice Department included having a statue’s naked boobs covered up so he wouldn’t be photographed in front of it at press conferences, keeled over just as he was about to enter the tropical aquarium exhibit at Hamburg’s zoo.

hamburg-temple-zoo.jpg

“There’s this funny-looking house-like thingy outside the entrance with all this carved wood and stuff,” said a family friend. “John’s a little short-sighted, so he got up on tippy-toes to get a closer look. Poor bastard had a seizure right on the spot.”

The temple was hand-made in Nepal using ancient woodcarving techniques. It is dedicated to Lord Shiva, one of the principal deities of Hinduism. hamburg-temple.jpg

“That Cheever guy must have been one sick and depraved bastard as well,” said a weakened Ashcroft in a telephone interview from his hospital room, adding he thought the temple’s location couldn’t be worse.

hagenbeck-temple-closeup.jpg “Imagine putting full-colour carvings of people engaged in such disgusting and immoral acts right in plain view at the entrance to a zoo, right where all those kiddies walk by!

What the hell is wrong with German people, anyway?

hamburg-temple-close.jpg

The temple has been standing for nearly five years at the entrance to Hagenbeck‘s, famous for being the first zoo in the world to come up with the idea of displaying animals in natural settings rather than cages.

Witnesses say they never noticed anything unusual about the building until the Ashcroft incident.

“It’s a good thing he wasn’t watching the boob tube,” said one 10-year-old zoo visitor. “You see this sort of thing on TV all the time here.”

Antipodean reaction to Ashcroft’s apparent angina attack was swift and decisive.

“That’s it, I’m headed to Hamburg,” said one well-known Australian nurse and blogger, adjusting her corset while logging on to a travel website. “I just love all those cute little figurines and stuff. Do you think they’d let me make a few plaster casts?”

hamburg-temple-carvings.jpg

© 2008 lettershometoyou




The banner photograph shows the town of Britannia Beach, BC, Canada, where I grew up. It's home. But I don't live there anymore.

My email

britbeach / at / yahoo dot ca

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 588 other followers

SUBSCRIBE! Or I’ll post again.

This blog is best consumed with a glass of wine and often a grain of salt. Take a random look:

twitter-i-send-pointless-little-messages

This blog has been visited

  • 508,978 times.

A few reasons why I sometimes get homesick

HoweSound2

HoweSound1

Squamish

MiningMuseum

More Photos

1oo% Blogthings-free since January, 2007

and one last factoid about me: according to these people, i can type per minute

OK, that wasn’t the last thing on the sidebar, but this is:


Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 588 other followers