ATLANTA, GA—In response to rising paranoia prompted by the Coronavirus, the Center for Disease Control advised Monday that everyone should compile as many pitchforks and torches as possible.
“There’s been a lot of misinformation spread about COVID-19 and, while there is still much unknown, one basic step we can all take to reduce transmission is making sure to have a pitchfork and torch on hand in the event we find an accursed,” said CDC director Robert Redfield, encouraging all to get down to their local haberdashery while supplies last.
“Sure, it might be a little inconvenient to throw stones every time they come near town square, but small steps like boarding up your windows and being indoors by sundown are necessary to prevent contracting this highly contagious disease,” Redfield went on, adding that it doesn’t hurt to be proactive and organize an angry mob with local villagers outside the afflicted’s home.
“If you do happen to know someone who has flu-like symptoms, it would be wise to keep your distance by casting them out into the woods,” Redfield said, noting that small preventative measures like screaming “Witch! Witch!” anytime they attempt to reintegrate with society can help lower the risk of transmission ten fold.
Redfield reminded the most effective treatment for a fever and shortness of breath is being burned at the stake.
UNITED STATES—In line with ramped up advertisements across print, TV, radio, billboard, and autoplaying digital ads, presidential candidate Mike Bloomberg launched a series of new ads that will reportedly take place deep in the psyche of every waking United States citizen.
“By using the latest in brain-to-brain interfacing technology, we have developed a way to reach voters directly in their occipital lobe,” said campaign strategist Frederic Sims, noting that Americans will begin visualizing brief, 5-second “Mike Will Get It Done” advertisements at the beginning and end of each individual thought their mind conceives.
“Whether it’s something as menial as remembering to turn the stove off or articulating your final words to a loved one on their death bed, every last American will know that Mike has what it takes each time a neuron fires.”
Added Sims: “Americans will also experience longer, 30-second ads while asleep in between REM cycles.”
At press time, thousands of Americans admitted they had unwillingly climaxed to the image of Bloomberg shaking hands with an industrial worker.
UNITED STATES—As tensions in the Middle East rise and government officials begin preparing for a worst-case scenario, millennials in the United States have issued a formal response to the possibility of a draft: “sorry, we’re busy that day.”
“We’d honestly love to, but we, like, kind of already have this thing. Thanks for hitting us up though,” millennial spokesperson Frederic Sims said, offering no specifics whatsoever, but clarifying they’d like to “grab drinks” with recruiting officers sometime.
Government officials have since called the response “flakey” and, in more critical instances, “straight up shady.”
“Just as the Greatest Generation rose to the occasion in World War II, we expect the same from today’s youth. However, it appears we underestimated millennial’s ability to bail at the last minute and make us wonder if we’re even friends anymore,” Roseville military recruiter Eli Watts said, venting frustration with one 23-year-old in particular who didn’t respond to his text, yet hours later posted an acai bowl to his Snapchat story.
CHINA—Expressing deep regret for the historical errors in her latest novel, author Mary Pope Osborne of the popular children’s book series The Magic Tree House apologized Monday for showing young readers a completely fictional massacre at Tiananmen Square in 1989 that never happened.
“While I hoped to educate children on the importance of democracy using a poignant moment in history, I now realize I should have checked my sources before sending Jack and Annie on a journey through time to witness some phony public mass execution,” Osborne said, making clear that there were never any tanks involved, not a single soldier that took aim, and certainly no casualties whatsoever.
“Looking back, perhaps I should’ve written about a true event—like the day the world celebrated when the CPC took power—instead of minutely describing the nonexistent hailstorm of bullets that tore through a protestor’s flesh and sprayed Jack’s glasses in a red mist, along with 13 consecutive pages of internal dialogue where Jack debates taking his own life after witnessing swathes of people fall prey to their own government,” Osborne went on, admitting that she should’ve consulted a history book and focused the story on something real and not Annie being trapped in history and used as a guinea pig to test experimental drugs in a Chinese concentration camp.
“If I myself could go back in time, I would change the name to something more accurate than Magic Tree House: Martial Law In The Morning,” Osborne said. “Maybe something like Just A Normal Day In June.”
After thanking Chinese distributors for correcting her mistake, Osborne went on to say her next novel set in current day Hong Kong is extremely accurate and will be titled Magic Tree House: Futile Protests On A Friday.
FORT MEADE, MA—In an effort to preserve the integrity of future elections, officials from the National Security Agency stated Thursday the specialist organization known as ‘Geek Squad’ has just finished renovating the country’s cyber defense system.
“Today I am proud to announce a comprehensive revamp of the National Security Agency’s digital hardware and cybersecurity systems, only made possible by Kevin,” said NSA director Frederic Sims (72), noting that his IBM PC and yellowing, buckle spring keyboard are now relics of the past.
In addition to replacing their dial-up internet with a fiber-optic connection, Kevin—who refurbished the National Security Agency with HP Pavilion desktop PC’s—garnered Sims’ praise for swapping out the old password [usa] with a new, “uncrackable” code that incorporates numbers, uppercase letters, and “that squiggly line above the tab button.” Sims took pause to assure agents concerned with the all-encompassing overhaul that the new password is on a sticky note on his monitor should anyone forget.
“Above all, America will now and forever be seen as the standard for impenetrable election security with the addition of Norton AntiVirus Plus,” Sims said, daring any foreign entity to try and get past the real-time protection of Norton’s pop up blocking 1 month free trial.
Sources indicate that while the bulk of Kevin’s efforts focused on cyber security, he also took the liberty of answering questions and addressing some much needed quality of life improvements.
“Kevin was vital in installing the ‘Google Chrome’, updating what is known as ‘Adobe Flash Player’, showing defense operatives how to connect to wifi, importing The Eagles “Desperado” album to my iTunes library, transcribing the steps for checking email, and helping Chief Intelligence Officer Alfred Greenblatt save a .pdf,” Sims said.
Kevin, who started with Geek Squad in July, told reporters he was happy to assist the National Security Agency with their common tech troubles.
“It was pretty easy. The hardest part was explaining they could still play solitaire,” Kevin said, who added that it took several minutes to convince Sims he would now be able to use his office phone and browse the internet simultaneously.
UNITED STATES—Giving Americans a look into the week ahead, the Weather Channel highlighted key locations across the country to expect national tragedies.
“Here we see nothing out of the ordinary with some light gunfire coming in off the east coast, followed by scattered shots in the afternoon, and a few more millimeters that evening,” said Channel 7 meteorologist Frederic Sims, urging parents to provide their children an extra layer of clothing like a bulletproof jacket.
“Looking out west, expect a 77% chance of a preventable disaster in the Santa Clarita vicinity to impact traffic on the 5 and parts of the 405,” he said, advising those with a commute to make ample time for delays.
In the Midwest, Sims warned a high of 45 deaths Monday with mostly thoughts and prayers all day Tuesday, however, normal conditions should resume Wednesday with a massacre at a college bar in Council Bluffs, Iowa.
WASHINGTON, D.C.—Cracking down on application requirements for U.S. citizenship, the State Department announced Saturday that it will begin requiring all applicants to have a blue checkmark on their Instagram profile to indicate they are verified public figures.
“Not only will applicants be required to have an active account, but profiles will also be inspected to prove they are of sufficient social status,” State Department spokesperson Frederic Sims said, noting that accounts will instantly be disqualified if a profile does not clearly state: lifestyle blogger, fitness expert, or entrepreneurial guru.
Criteria for ideal candidate profiles will contain a link in their bio, a 15% discount deal with an obscure, eco-friendly clothing company, and, most importantly, a feigned sense of self-importance.
“This measure is simply to confirm the identity of individuals entering the United States and to safeguard current Americans from faceless zeros,” Sims added.
Sims explained that current U.S. citizens caught without a badge could be placed in a social media internment camp where they will be re-educated in deriving self-worth from arbitrary numbers. “In extreme cases, these individuals will be forced to relearn whether ‘all that glitters isn’t gold’ or ‘a smooth sea never make a skilled sailor’ would constitute a better caption for #motivationmonday, and, in certain instances, judging if Clarendon, Gingham, or Lo-Fi would best compliment a selfie at golden hour.”