Whimsy, satire, irreverent humor, and hijinx from a place not so far away

Posts Tagged ‘shenanigans’

The Toothless Budget Deficit Commission

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February 19th, 2010 Posted 12:52 am

The President had announced with great fanfare the birth of a new Budget deficit reduction commission…a blue ribbon committee charged with taking a close examination of the deficit and deciding what actions could be taken.

But there was a problem, which staffers inside the White house later described as a cluster F#&*.  The President had privately instructed his Deficit Czar to organize a toothless effort to study deficit reduction.  And naturally, the obedient-to-a-fault Czar started tracking-down and recruiting candidates with no teeth.

toothlessHe had started with the National Hockey League, particularly with retired players who played in the era when men were men…no helmets, no mouthguards, proud of getting into bloodbaths on the ice and pulling the jersey over an opponent’s head.  These guys proudly displayed their toothless displays as a badge of honor.  But, unfortunately, these fellows, a bit battered from too many slap-shot pucks to the noggin, said they were not interested unless they would hold the committee meetings on the ice.

Next they went to the Bizarreville Affordable Dentures office to do some recruiting in the lobby.  But a lot of these people were only about as smart as a congressman, so could not pass the basic intelligence test.  Plus, the Czar was not sure if people with false teeth truly qualified as “toothless”, and he was just a bit too nervous to ask the President for clarification.

But finally the team managed to scrape together enough toothless wonders to have a meeting, and the cuts began.  The first item to get cut was, as no surprise, all government-sponsored dental care.  All dental programs for government employees, military personnel, and officials would be gone…zip.  Savings would be in the multiple billions.

Next item cut:  Food Stamps.  Their rationale was if people don’t have food, they can go to the soup kitchens like the rest of us.  Or they can just make their own soup, just like grammaw used to do.  More billions.

Third cut:  All earmarks.  No one at the toothless table knew what an earmark was.  So they just cancelled them all.  More billions.

The Gummers started going nuts on all the frivolous spending on National Endowment of the Arts, studies of Polar Bear mating habits in Alaska, embryonic stem cell research, and Acorn – whatever the hell that is.  They cut out Medicaid completely but agreed to provide each current Medicaid recipient with a bottle of Vicks VapoRub to help with the transition. 

In the end, the Toothless Deficit Commission cut out hundreds and hundreds of little streams that were flowing into Pisswater Channel, and figured out how to balance the whole budget without a tax increase.  But when they presented their study to the President, he looked puzzled and dumbfounded.  All he could say was, “Ahhh…errr…ummm…duh…I mean….hmmmmm.”  But the President thanked the committee for their good work, complimented them on their wholesome “rural beauty”, but indicated that he had to leave for a security briefing in 5 minutes as he gave them the bum’s rush.

He gently placed the study into File 13 on his way out the oval office door.


Disclaimer:  all stories in Bizarreville are fiction, even the ones that seem pretty darn real.

Keep buying gold, you idiots

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November 29th, 2009 Posted 3:52 pm

Don Smerfnerd of Smerfnerd Investments is urging all customers to load up on gold, and do it now.  He says he is personally jumping on the bandwagon, joining the new cast of Gold Fever who have been coming out of the woodwork, citing the recently released Shlunkmann Economic Study that, he says, predicts gold could go as high as $2000 per ounce.

But the truth is, the Shlunkmann study, if anyone took the time to read it, never predicted gold would go to 2000.  The study itself was about self-fulfilling prophesies, the Pygmalion effect.  But it used the example if enough nutcases started predicting that gold would double in price, and ginned-up enough fear in the marketplace, it could all set in motion events that would actually cause the price of gold to double.  So, then what’s the deal with Smerfnerd?  Many of his colleagues have been wondering the same thing…why is Smerfnerd, a conservative investor, doing this?  He has never been one to buy at the high end of the market and get shmucked.bizarre95

Turns out, our intrepid investigative reporter discovered that Smerf and a couple of his ex-Amway buddies devised a Buy Gold pyramid scheme.  It goes like this:  You buy some gold, then go pitch/grab some buddies to buy gold, who go hawk even more people to buy it, who then shake down some of their friends/family…and so on.  Feed the fear factor of world economic collapse, and roll out some drivel likening our situation to the fall of the Roman Empire.  Get someone to do a story of a family storing canned goods in their 60’s -era fallout shelter.  Toss in a Nostradamus prediction or two.  Develop a network of gold sellers, and grab a little commission on every layer in the sales pyramid.  Pocket some serious dough.

At some point, like all good pyramid schemes, it will all come crashing down.  Smerf will eventually run out of nimrods to suck into his web, and some people will start doing a little bit of gold dumping….then the gold price will plummet.  But by then, Smerf will likely have bailed on all his stash, pocketed a tidy profit, raked in enough commissions, and will be laughing all the way to the Caymans.  Smerfnerd could not be reached for comment.

Black Friday off to the races with fresh new gamesmanship

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November 27th, 2009 Posted 4:04 pm

Bizarreville retailers are off to a good fresh start on Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving when stores open up pre-dawn with hard-to-believe Door Opener specials, and lines of trembling shoppers camping out to get first dibs.  With all the uncertainty in the economy, retailers were approaching this Black Friday with more trepidation than usual…and so did some special planning accordingly.

Retailers started by advertising more aggressively in the Thanksgiving Day newspapers.  Rather than the typical 25% discount promotion with a few small footnote “exclusions”, they decided to go with 40% discounts with more extensive and creative exclusions in ultra-miniscule font size, easily readable with a 100X power microscope.  One tricky retailer offered the 40% discount only to customers who came in the store wearing large panama hats with purple bandanas, but was surprised to see that half the nutballs in line had the stupid hats on.  One customer had one with a blue bandana, and a heated argument ensued with the store manager over the definition of “purple”.

Stores have adjusted down their famous “Limited Quantities Available” promotional items from the typical 4 or 5 items down to 1 or 2 items, so they can execute the bait-and-switch shtick a little earlier.  Meanwhile, they are bumping up the prices on the “switch” items to bolster margins, once the promo items are quickly snarfed up.  It would seem that shoppers might be wary of these tricks, but the stores are offering free Extra Bold coffee to keep them in a manic, frenzy state so they miss the fine details of their pricing shenanigans.

bizarre93Stores have spent more time training their sales and checkout employees on how to execute their Black Friday chicanery, with particular emphasis on how to play dumb, e.g. huh, I don’t know where that item is…huh, guess we sold out of it…huh, I don’t know what the ad says…huh, we don’t have a store manager here today so you’ll just have to talk to me…huh, if I try to give you a break, I’ll get fired.  Reportedly, the trainees this year seem more adept than ever at learning the Play Dumb skill set.

Stores are still working schemes and strategies to try and unload the junky crap that’s been gathering dust since January on their shelves.  One retailer said, “We could offer a 90% discount on this crud, and it still will be fermenting here.  May just back up the truck and haul it off to the City Dump…or may just give it to our employees as sort of a ‘Christmas Bonus’…yeah, we’ll probably do that.”

Slinky dealmaking is helping get health care bill done

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November 21st, 2009 Posted 4:34 pm

Reports are surfacing of much sinister deal-making by Leaders squirming to get votes to pass the new Bizarreville Health Care program. It’s going to be a close vote, so they’re exercising their creativity like never before.

Allegedly, leaders promised one lawmaker that his district would get funding for an all-new theme park if he voted YES on the bill.  The park would create thousands of new jobs.  When Leaders were challenged about this shenanigan, the Whip explained it would be a “Medical Theme” theme park with roller coasters that look like giant arteries and coaster cars outfitted to look like clots.  There would be simulators that take riders on exciting, adventurous trips up the human bowel.  “It would be an educational experience like no other for the kids, and a perfect fit with the intent of the proposed Health Care bill to better educate the public,” said the Leaders.

Another lawmaker was wavering on his vote, so Leaders threw him a bone…funding to rebuild each and every highway in his district.  The decision was rationalized by saying those potholes and rough roads were creating teeth-jarring impacts on backs and spinal columns, running up health costs for the citizenry.  Fixing the roads and reducing these costs would greatly help pay for the huge bureaucracy that would be necessary to drive the whole program.  The Lawmaker tried to hold out for all concrete roads, but reluctantly settled on some asphalt in the final negotiated deal.

A 3rd lawmaker, Ernest Drooper, wanted his back scratched at least as much as those other two.  Drooper and the Leaders wrestled through several negotiating sessions to delve into what greasing-of-the-skids would be needed to change his vote.  Finally, they agreed to build a modest-size pharmaceutical research laboratory focused on eliminating corns on baby toes…apparently a huge problem among his constituents.  The Corn Toe Lab will break ground early next year.bizarre75

So, it’s looking like the Health Care bill is getting the bolstering it needs for passage.  There could be some additional vote leakage as word gets out of the flim-flamming going on, and other lawmakers demand their fair share of beak-wetting.  But Leaders plan to hurry the bill through, while Pandora’s box is still partially closed.