Thursday, November 30, 2006

Google Unplugs Their Answering Machine For Good

Mountain View, CA--One of Google's longest running services, Google Answers, was abruptly shut down today after a four-year run on the popular searching site.

The service offered trained "researchers" who would seek out answers to burning questions submitted by users willing to pay Google for the same service that any public library gladly provides free of charge. The questions usually ranged from "how do I know if I am pregnant," to the even more challenging "what do I do if I am pregnant," though there was the occasional request for directions from a confused motorist.

"I guess we are just a victim of our own success," says co-founder Larry Page. "We hoped that people would be willing to pay our researchers to find answers to their questions, but I guess the public quickly figured out that they could just 'Google' the damn answers themselves for free!"

Google is in a difficult position, because they have invested millions in their Google Answers program, and had only realized $4.26 in payments from users since the service went live.

"Yeah, we really took a bath on this one," said Page. "I don't really know how Google can survive, if people aren't willing to pay us to find out stuff for them."

"We just bought the complete set of Encyclopedia Britannica reference books from a traveling salesman right before we decided to pull the plug on the service, too. Guess those are going right up on eBay!"

Page also mentioned that Google was working on an experimental program for displaying ads alongside search results on their site, but he was not very hopeful that this would ever become a profitable venture for the fledgling company.

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

CIA Calls Off The Hunt For Osama

Arlington, VA--After five years of searching for terrorist mastermind Osama bin Laden, the director of the CIA has given up and recalled all of his operatives back to Washington.

"We have cried 'come out, come out wherever you are' numerous times, in English and in Arabic, but this guy just won't play fair," said CIA Director Hunt S. Finito in a recent press conference.

"If you remember back when we were young, there was always one kid on every block who was so good at hiding, that you eventually just gave up looking for him. Well, Osama bin Laden is like that kid."

Finito also stated that the CIA was "pretty sure" that the al-Qaeda leader was hiding somewhere along the common border of Pakistan and Afghanistan. Although, added Finito, "we haven't ruled out Kryzjkistan, or one of those other 'stans--aww, hell, we just give up, OK?"

Osama bin Laden was last seen back in October, when he released a cryptic video in which he claimed "I am in your base, killing all your d00ds." The CIA has done a thorough check of our foreign military bases, but has seen no sign of the infamous terrorist.

The CIA instead plans to focus their resources from this point on toward recapturing Saddam Hussein, who put on a fresh suit and walked out of jail undetected last Friday.

Hussein, who was put on trial and convicted for murdering half of his country, apparently told a prison guard that he left his car double-parked outside the courtroom, and that he would be right back in just a minute or two.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Social Activist Builds His Own iPods In The Garage

Pasadena, TX--Journeyman electrician and social activist Isaac Leibowitz can claim that he owns one of the few iPod Nanos made in the United States, because he actually put it together himself!

"I was reading about the oppresive conditions in the Chinese factories that produce the iPod, and wanted to do something to help the workers overseas," said Leibowitz.

"So I tracked down the suppliers of all of the components of the new iPods, and placed an order for the parts to be sent to my home."

Leibowitz admits that "it took a while to figure out how everything went together, but I have a couple working models now. Also, I tried to get my wife to help out as well, but she just kept burning herself with the soldering iron."

"My kids were not much help either," added Leibowitz. "Little Timmy installed the screen upside down, and put the headphone jack on the bottom. Oh, wait, it does go on the bottom."

"Shit. Now I have to start all over again."

Leibowitz's version of the iPod Nano is not cheap either. "Ordering all the parts separately just about quadruples the price," said the electrician. "But I think I can keep the price of the 4 gig Nano under a thousand bucks, if I don't charge for my labor."

"Besides, this is all about taking responsibility for the impact we have on the world around us. And who could possibly want to put a price on that?"

Monday, November 27, 2006

"N Word" Ban Confuses Many Americans

Los Angeles, CA--In a joint press conference held tonight in South Los Angeles, both Reverend Jesse Jackson and Congresswoman Maxine Waters urged all Americans to refrain from using the "n word" in a public setting, if they could possibly help it.

"We must all fight racism and intolerance at every turn by agreeing not to utter that offensive and repulsive word in polite company from this day forward," exclaimed Congresswoman Waters.

Reverend Jackson seconded this declaration, mentioning that "in his latest YouTube video, Mr. Kramer has shown us all just how much harm the 'n word' is capable of causing."

Reverend Jackson was of course referring to an infamous comedy routine recently performed by Seinfeld co-star Michael Richards, in which Richards used the "n word" 714 times in one night in an unsuccessful attempt to revive his waning career.

"I'm all for banning this so-called 'n word' thing," stated local investment banker Marvin Gardens, "but only under one condition, which is that they first tell us which word we are banning."

Mr. Gardens added that he has already seen the Michael Richards clip numerous times on television, but that "they always spell the word 'n$%&@!' up on the screen, and then bleep out the audio so I still have no idea what it is really."

"Until they decide to tell us, I guess I will go ahead and continue to refrain from using any words with percentage symbols and beeping sounds in them, just to be on the safe side."

Friday, November 24, 2006

"Buy Nothing Day" Participant Taunted Endlessly By Friends

Burbank, CA--Local community college student Elton Riggles reports that he has been the victim of merciless teasing from friends and relatives after announcing plans to stay away from the stores altogether on November 24th, a day of shopping that many look forward to all year.

Known informally as "Black Friday," this once-a-year event promises huge mark-downs and extended hours as retailers kick off the holiday shopping season.

"Around six this morning, my cell phone rang," mentioned Riggles. "It was one of my friends, sending me a picture from his camera phone of the new Nintendo Wii system he just picked up at Best Buy. I tried to ignore it, but then someone knocked on my dorm room door about five minutes later and asked to borrow my boombox to play the new Jay-Z CD they just picked up on sale at the Virgin Megastore."

Riggles also sadly noted that he had to turn down an invitation to get coffee at Starbucks with Jennifer Simmons, a member the beach volleyball team whom he has had a crush on since school began.

"I tried to explain to her that I was opting out of our materialistic, shallow culture for the day, but she just looked at me like I was nuts," sighed Riggles.

"Guess that's the last I'll see of her."

Jay-Z - Kingdom Come

Thursday, November 23, 2006

"As God Is My Witness, I Thought Turkeys Could Fly"

Cincinnati, OH--An advertising stunt dreamed up by a local Cincinnati radio station went terribly wrong when twenty live turkeys plummeted to their deaths after being dropped out of a helicopter under the misguided assumption that they would all just fly away.

"The turkeys were hitting the ground like sacks of wet cement," stated Les Nessman, who reported the event live for station WKRP from the parking lot of the Pinedale shopping mall.

"It was just terrible. People started to panic and were running around the parking lot screaming. One of the turkeys even crashed right through the windshield of a parked car."

Station Manager Arthur Carlson took full responsibility for the chaos caused by the Thanksgiving Day promotion, claiming that "as God is my witness, I thought turkeys could fly."

The station promises to fully reimburse anybody who suffered property damage as a result of this stunt.

WKRP is a "beautiful music" station that ranks 16th in the 18 station Cincinnati market. They are currently considering a format change in hopes of boosting their dismal ratings.

REO Speedwagon - Live - You Get What You Play For - Flying Turkey Trot

Monday, November 20, 2006

Jayden James Federline "Grossed Out" After Viewing His Own Conception On Video

Hollywood, CA--Britney Spears' eldest son Jayden James was "visibly shaken" after sitting through nearly four hours of unedited video footage of his parents "doing it" in various rooms of their Malibu mansion.

Ms. Spears, who has threatened to give away a remastered version of the infamous "four hour sex tape" that her ex-husband Kevin Federline keeps claiming to possess, thought nothing of bringing along young Jayden James to the editing suite to watch a rough cut of the film last weekend.

"I mean, it is one thing to accidentally walk in on your parents having sex," stated Jayden James, "but being forced to endure four straight hours of it on a 60" Hi-Definition Plasma screen can really mess with your mind."

"In addition, though I am only one, even I can add nine months to the January '05 date imprinted on the video and deduce that I am probably watching the actual night I was conceived up there on the screen," added Jayden James.

"My mom better start putting away some cash to pay for the years of future therapy I'm gonna need to get over seeing that!"

The elder Mr. Federline was unable to comment on this latest episode of Ms. Spears' blatant disregard for the welfare of their children, as he was busy giving a concert for 10,000 empty folding chairs at Cobo Arena in Detroit.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Guy #27 In PS3 Line At Best Buy Kept Hoping Somebody In Front Of Him Would Die

Glendale, CA--Unemployed dog groomer Wayne Gaval, who spent most of last evening in line at the Best Buy #44 in Glendale praying that one of the people standing in front of him "wouldn't survive the night," was disappointed this morning that everyone there had indeed lived to see another day.

"I figured that somebody up there might just keel over and die," said Gaval, "but I guess the competition was pretty stiff this year."

Nearly three hundred shoppers were waiting patiently in line at the Glendale store for the new Sony PlayStation 3 to go on sale at midnight. Even though each Best Buy outlet was only given an initial allotment of twenty-six units, lines of hopeful gamers started to form around the store as early as last week.

"I would have gotten here even earlier on Monday, but I had to wait for my stupid girlfriend to get off work before I could get a ride," sighed Gaval.

The new Sony PS3, featuring Blu-ray technology and built-in Wi-Fi capability, retails for nearly $500 for the basic version of the console.

"A couple guys who were up there near the entrance looked like they were in their 30s already," added Gaval. "I was betting that at least one of them would't be able to hold out 'til midnight, but I guess I underestimated their constitution."

Since Gaval was unsuccessful in his attempt to obtain a PS3, he instead plans to use the five hundred dollars to "buy a cheap car, or finally move out of my parent's garage or something."

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Will "Googling" Replace Four Years Of Medical School?

The American Society of Medical Administrators (ASMA), the governing board that oversees medical licensure in the United States, is said to be considering "Googling" as an alternate path to a medical degree.

This new program may soon be a real option for students who complete four years of undergraduate work, and are then able to earn qualifying scores on the MCAT exam. In the past, this test traditionally determined if a candidate was eligible to enter an accredited medical school in the United States, but it may now be used to qualify a candidate for this alternative certification.

"Basically," stated ASMA spokesperson John S. Hopkins, "medical students are already overwhelmed by the sheer amount of information they must process and memorize, and we thought that their time could be better spent physically interacting with patients, and practicing surgical techniques on the cadavers."

"Since almost any medical diagnosis and treatment can be found on Google if you input the right set of symptoms, we just didn't see a need to send our doctors to the library for four years when they could be cutting people open and sewing them back up again instead."

Medical resident Lucille Carver is one of a handful of doctors participating in a pilot "Googling" program at Tufts University School of Medicine in Massachusetts. "I've got a web-enabled Motorola 'Crazer' phone with me at all times, so getting the information I need is no problem, unless I don't have reception for some reason," claims Carver.

"If that happens, I just tell patients I have to 'consult with a colleague,' and then I just go down to my office and Google the information there. After that, I usually just stroll back to the operating room, and then act like I figured it out on my own."

"With the ever-expanding body of medical knowledge we have today, it would be impossible for even the most accomplished physician to keep up with all of it," added Hopkins. "We would rather have our doctors out there concentrating on the things that really matter, like locating that missing retractor before they close their patient back up and send them on their way."

Friday, November 10, 2006

Bootlegged "Borat" #1 On Streets Of Kazakhstan

The decision not to release "Borat!" in Kazakhstan has apparently been a boon to the republic’s street vendors, many of whom recently have been seen selling bootlegged copies of the controversial movie from pushcarts and car boots in the local markets.

Apparently, the movie was secretly filmed during one of its many premiers last month, and shipped overseas by a Russian student studying in the US whose girlfriend lives in Kazakhstan.

After a few locals from her village found out that she had the film in her possession, somebody asked to borrow it, and that person apparently had ties to an underground bootlegging operation based in Almaty.

The dub is supposed to be of very low quality, with some sections missing, and very poor sound throughout. Nevertheless, hundreds of copies have changed hands in back alley deals in recent days, and Borat himself would be impressed to learn that the film is available on DVD as well as VHS tape for about 500 Tenge, or 4 US dollars at current conversion rates.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

President Bush Already Trying To Distance Himself From Rumsfeld

Washington, DC--In an impromptu press conference held in the Oval Office today, President Bush expressed little regret upon hearing the news that Donald Rumsfeld, his Secretary of Defense, had abruptly resigned from his position this morning.

"Rummy was a terrible secretary," stated Bush. "He never once topped up my coffee without me asking first, and he was always unwilling to lie and say that I was 'in a meeting' whenever Laura called the office and I didn't feel like dealing with her."

"On top of that," added the president, "he didn't even give the customary two-weeks' notice before leaving his post."

"I don't know what he was thinking, but he is definitely not getting a good recommendation from me if any future employers call, I can tell you that much!"

"Oops, She Did It Again" Voted Most Predictable Headline of 2006

In a recent informal survey of top newspapers and websites, it was discovered that nearly 84% of all feature writers independently chose to go with the headline Oops, She Did It Again to lead off their stories on Britney Spears' recently announced separation from her immensely untalented husband Kevin Federline.

"It was just too tempting to ignore," said Dallas Morning Star journalist Harve Hungerford. "I mean, she is always repeating the same stupid mistakes over and over again in her life, so what else can you say really?"

Meredith McKenzie, editor of the popular celebrity blog "Weekly Web Wackos," also justified her use of the ubiquitous headline by stating that "Ms. Spears may not yet be a woman, but she sure is a two-time loser in the marriage department."

"At least this one lasted longer than her six hour wedding to Jason Alexander, the high school sweetheart she decided to marry on a last-second whim back in 2004."

Other no-brainer headlines culled from the survey included I’ve Just Begun (Having My Fun), and the oh-so-obvious and highly unfunny "Hit My Baby (With Divorce Papers) One More Time.

Mrs. Spears was honored that so many feature writers chose to use Oops, She Did It Again in their articles, and thanked them all for "reminding the public that I used to be cute and make records that actually got on the radio."

"Sometimes I think it is just me against the music, y'all," added Spears. "It was nice to see that so many writers chose to honor my accomplishments in the field of singering in this fashion."

Mr. Federline, who is expected to vanish into obscurity at any moment, had no comment for reporters, which was perfectly fine by us anyway.

In a related story, Britney is now asking the press to refer to her estranged husband as "FedEx."

For further details, see this story, this story, or this story.

Sunday, November 05, 2006

An Explosive Conversation With Digg.Com's Jay Adelson

Reprinted by kind permission of the now defunct Defiant Salmon weekly newsletter.

In keeping with this week’s patriotic theme, I sat down with CEO Jay Adelson on the 4th of July to discuss the anniversary of the bicentennial, safe handling of fireworks, and his initial response to the overwhelming success of the recent "3.0" revision of his website.

In case you have been away from the Internet for a while, is a social networking/bookmarking site that applies the democratic process to the art of newsgathering. Members vote on stories submitted by other users, and the most popular items are "promoted" to the homepage of the site.

In the spirit of full disclosure, I also have to mention that I grew up with Jay Adelson on the mean streets of Detroit, MI (OK--the mean suburban streets), and our mothers used to play Mah-Jong together. Personally, I never thought he'd amount to much, but he seems to be doing just fine for himself these days!

Actually, I am breaking one of the cardinal rules of the site, by posting an interview where the responses are even funnier than my questions, but I guess I'll just have to let that slide this time...

Happy 30th anniversary of the bicentennial, Jay Adelson!

An acquaintance of mine answered the Trivial Pursuit question "What happens every 76 years?" with "The Bicentennial!" Other than revealing much about this individual's mental assets, it also reminded me how much fun we had that day in Detroit, burning things. Yes, we Detroiters do love to burn things, especially on July 4th. Hospital records will confirm that I was in the hospital for stitches or various other injuries every July 4th from 1976 though 1984. (The answer, by the way, was Haley's Comet.)

You are probably too young to remember the bicentennial, huh? Well, let me tell ya, it was a pretty darn exciting time for us Americans, by golly!

Remember it? Oh pishaw! Burning my fingers on sparklers! Lighting illegal bottle rockets aimed at the scary people's house! Parades through Southfield! Eating red white and blue EVERYTHING, even steak! How could I forget?

Anyway, I stopped by recently, and noticed you guys did a bit of spring cleaning. What is the initial response to your new "Version 3" update?

We pretend to be calm about it. The truth is, we are astounded by the success. We keep high fiving each other, like NASA mission control after a successful shuttle launch. We just crossed the 400,000 registered users mark! Huzzah!

Our new users per day went up 5-10 times, as did our pageviews and so on. We're still counting stats and will know better in a week or so how much is a spike vs. sustained, but no question our submissions per day went up by more than double! We're very happy with the results.

What has been the effect, if any, of adding non-tech related news to your site? Are you concerned about losing your core audience of tech news junkies?

You'll notice that users, submissions, and comments in the technology section have continued to climb, at even greater rates. I think leaving the default to technology was a good idea, at least for now.

Our intention is to create some cross-over community, but by and large, to protect each area as a potentially separate audience. We designed v3 to ensure that the original community could continue to operate and exist without impact, and I think we were successful.

I recently read an interesting article posted on your site that said that, as today's adults, we have fewer close friends overall and less interaction with the community than our parents' generation. Do you think social networking sites and communities like digg have any real impact on the quality of our lives away from the computer?

I'm reminded of William Shatner's hosting of Saturday Night Live, where he stood in front of a (fake) Star Trek convention audience and said, "You! Have you ever kissed a girl? You! You probably still live in your mother's basement!" Then, when confronted with the possibility of not being paid for the appearance, said something like "Sorry, that was the evil Kirk from episode 36, The Enemy Within," to large applause.

People who otherwise would not be social, whether it is because they are isolated geographically, anti-social by nature, or oppressed by other obstacles, have found online communities a fantastic way to reach out. How many marriages happen from online meetups? Computer dating services? Fan communities? I think communities like digg can enhance the social lives of many who otherwise couldn't get out there. I don't think it reduces the amount of time we spend outside, if that's what you mean...

Ultimately, the idea that people can have a neutral, fair, diverse flow of information that is global in nature, uncorrupted by giant interests such as governments or non-neutral media, is far too important to consider these impacts of whether Tommy is a little pale this summer.

Let's talk hard numbers here for a minute (if you can). How many members does digg have now, and how fast is the site growing? Does the ad revenue necessarily always keep up with the amount of growth you experience?

Well, as of this morning we're at 400365, but it's growing fast, doubling monthly at this rate (though again, I expect that to slow down to doubling every three months or so once this spike has passed).

Yes, the ad revenue keeps up, though it multiplied a bit higher than expected with the release of v3. Federated Media has been a fantastic partner to make that happen, as well as Google for text ads.

There are a whole bunch of digg clones popping up all over the place like weeds these days. Does this flatter you, or just make you angry? Do you feel like they are just cashing in on all the hard work you have done thus far, or is this just a source of validation for the concept of democratic news selection?

If someone copies digg (like Time Warner did with Netscape), that just validates our model and flatters us. I don't get angry about it at all. It does annoy me when people copy parts of our model, then prance around saying that our model doesn't work. That's just plain silly.

We know there are limitations, and we also know how to address them, through greater transparency and additional tools to empower the people to moderate the site. Also, two years of research went into our promotional algorithms, so you can't just point to a clone's failure to work properly and say, "See? Digg's concept doesn't work!" when they simply work by raw numbers of votes, without the benefit of our research and intellectual property.

Ultimately, we think there will be hundreds of clones, if not thousands. We hope to reduce these in number by offering people more customizable and personal versions of digg, so that these smaller communities can use us and our engine to achieve their goals (either directly or through an API).

What is next for digg? Any chance you will add a fake news category to the site? Because I know this great blog...

You've really inspired me. While offbeat news might work for now, I'm such a fan of sites like yours I think we should create a special section. I'll go start beating Kevin up about this immediately! For starters, I should require the staff to start watching The Daily Show prior to our staff meetings or suffer bad performance reviews.

Thank you so much for your time, Jay Adelson. You are a gentleman and a scholar. Happy 30th anniversary of the bicentennial to you and yours!

And to you, Sam L. Parity. Remember, for what it's worth, I beat you in Asteriods in Chatham, Ontario in 1979, even though you're older than me, and that is all that matters to an eight year old...

Hussein Found "Not Guilty"; Americans Apologize & Quietly Leave Country

Azamiyah, Iraq--In a shocking turn of events, the Iraqi high council has declared Saddam Hussein "not guilty" of all charges relating to the 1982 massacre of 148 Shiites in the village of Dujail.

Though most of the twelve-person jury was murdered during the course of the trial, Iraqi law allowed the remaining three members to pass judgement on the former president.

"Unfortunately, the prosecution did not present us with any convincing evidence in this case. In addition, we were afraid if we came back with a 'guilty' verdict, Saddam was going to execute everyone in our family, and then dig up our departed relatives and kill them again as well," said jury foreperson Haddar el Shammani.

George Bush was one of the first to congratulate Hussein on his favorable verdict, as he vowed to immediately restore Hussein to power and pull our troops out from the country immediately. "No hard feelings there, buddy," offered a contrite George Bush minutes after the verdict was read.

"I know we've left your country a little worse for the wear, but we are willing to offer you an aid package totaling over thirty-thousand dollars," added Bush.

"That should be enough to restore the infrastructure of Iraq to pre-invasion conditions, and also pay for the construction of a few new statues to replace the ones we pulled down back in '03."

Saturday, November 04, 2006

Borat Kidnapped By Uzbek Loyalists

Samarqand, Uzbekistan--The Sons of Uzbek Defence Squadron (SUDS) released a statement early this morning claiming that they have apprehended Kazakh journalist Borat Sagdiyev, and are detaining him for questioning indefinitely at an undisclosed location near Samarqand.

"Even though there are few English-speaking citizens of Uzbekistan, we understand the meaning of this word 'asshole' he use in reference to our country," stated loyalist leader Gryzchek Byzcheckov. "We were tired of the terrible things he say about Uzbekistan in his movie, and we want to find out why he hate us so much."

Byzcheckov also mentioned that they "call the embassy in Kazakhstan to find out how much ransoms they offer for him, but they just laugh and hang up on the phone."

Journalist Sagdiyev recently released an English-language documentary film called Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan, in which he travels across the United States in an ice cream van with his producer and a grizzly bear in tow to learn about the cultural practices of everyday Americans.

"Sagdiyev now say that movie about Borat is all fakes, and that he really like people in Uzbekistan," says the loyalist leader.

On top of that," added Byzcheckov, "he keeps insist that he is actually a British citizen named Sasha Barney Cohen, but we say back on him that no Westerner would be caught dead wearing suit like that!"

Apple Spokesperson: "No 6th Generation Touchscreen iPod--Not Now, Not Ever"

Cupertino, CA--During a recent press conference, Apple PR spokesperson Ellen Doppler sadly announced that the company is abandoning all efforts to replace the currently available 5th generation video-enabled iPod.

"Basically, we have decided that the eighty-gigabyte iPod + video is good enough for the average consumer of today, and also of the foreseeable future. I mean, it plays songs, videos, Podcasts, and even movies now--frankly, we just can't think of anything else that it needs to do."

This latest proclamation sent shockwaves through legions of Apple fanatics, who expected a replacement for the aging device to arrive at any moment. Rumors of a full-screen iPod with a virtual clickwheel have been running rampant over the internet ever since Apple patented a method of selecting songs and menus by touching the screen itself.

"Yeah, we did try to come up with a way to replace the physical control surface, but it just never worked right," said Doppler. "It kept jumping into the middle of a game of Breakout every time we tried to lower the volume on the blasted thing."

With over 25 million units sold, the Apple iPod is the most successful player ever developed in the history of mp3 devices. "You can stick one in your car, in your pocket--hell, you can even stick one in your shoe and go jogging now," bragged the Apple spokesperson.

As the press conference came to a close, Ms. Doppler fielded a few questions, and then concluded with this statement:

"If the current iPod isn't sexy enough, thin enough, or shiny enough for you, then you should just go ahead and design a replacement yourself. Because this is the best we can come up with, and we are tired of banging our heads against the wall night and day trying to improve a product that is already damn near perfect!"

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Schwarzenegger Travels Back In Time & Terminates Angelides' Grandfather

Mykonos, Greece--Arnold Schwarzenegger, California's incumbent governor, is drawing heavy fire from critics who accuse him of traveling back in time to kill the grandfather of his opponent in the upcoming gubernatorial election, thereby negating the existence of Phil Angelides in its entirety.

We've got thousands of pins and visors already printed with Phil's picture on them, but all of a sudden, it is like Phil never existed," stated Angelides' campaign manager Jose Barerra.

"Schwarzenegger claims he was home all weekend resting, but we are pretty sure he contacted SkyNet and had them send him back to turn-of-the-century Greece to terminate Phil's grandfather Stavros, thereby ensuring a clean victory in next week's election."

Stavros Milos Angelides, a peasant olive farmer from Mykonos, Greece, would have offered little resistance to a T-800 model Terminator with cybernetic arm and a lust for blood.

"All of a sudden, all the history books say Stavros was killed under mysterious circumstances in the early twenties, when I know for a fact he was still alive in the mid-'70s when Phil and I graduated from Harvard," claims Barerra. "In addition, Phil's dad is still alive, so Schwarzenegger would have had to go back two generations not to arouse any suspicion."

Schwarzenegger, who agreed to answer a few questions at an impromptu press conference last Tuesday, refuted the claims of his opponent's supporters, and said that he was unfamiliar with anyone named Angelides.

"I have run unopposed for the entire election, and now, at the last minute, the Democrats come up with some crazy story to make me look like the bad guy. I never heard of this Angelides character, and resent the allegation that I am some sort of futuristic monster constructed of living tissue over a metal endoskeleton."

"I'm just in good shape for my age," claimed Schwarzenegger, "though technically, I won't be manufactured by Cyberdyne for another twenty-three years."