Fake News

Kang Pyong-il briskly walks up the stairs of a dimly lit, 10-story Kaesong office building. The 25-year-old is a writer for The Very Glorious and Democratic Times, a state-run satirical news agency. Out of breath, Pyong-il eventually rushes into the top-floor office of his editor, Jang Song-chul.

“Sir, our last article where we said ‘the United States will cease to exist as our mighty nuclear arsenal will crush them’, did not go down well,” Kang said. “They actually took it seriously, they actually take us seriously.”

“Are you for real?” A shocked Jang responded. “Don’t they get that we’re being sarcastic when we say ‘mighty’?”

“No, I think they actually think that North Koreans are stupid enough to think that we can defeat the entire Western World with one or two shoddily made missiles,” Kang said.

The middle-aged editor rubbed his eyes and shook his head in disbelief, “You think?”

“Yep,” Kang nodded. “Oh yeah, and the Americans tried contacting one of their diplomats, Mr Hazel, after the article was published, but they can’t reach him. They think the government is keeping him in a prison or something as a major provocation, and President Trump said they will launch a full scale attack unless we notify them of his condition immediately.”

“What!?” Jang barked as he abruptly rose to his feet.

“Don’t worry, I know Greg Hazel and spoke to him two days ago and he’s fine,” Sang said. “He’s based in Pyongyang and they’re having a bad electricity outage at the moment I’ve heard.”

Jang sighed with relief as he slowly sunk back into his brown leather chair.

“Yeah, he actually said the food at the Yanggkdo Hotel is so irresistible that he locked himself in his room for a day so he doesn’t put on too much weight,” Kang said.

“Wow, he must be hungry now,” Jang grinned.

“He said he’s starving to death,” Kang chuckled.

Jang pointed to a business card at the top right corner of his mahogany desk, “there’s the number we have for the US State Department, call them now and say he’s fine and let them know they will be able to speak to him in a day or two.”

“No problem,” Kang said.

“Remember that we’re on thin ice, so let’s keep it very short and quote exactly what he said, so there won’t be any confusion,” Jang said as Kang began to dial.

Kang nodded and winked, “got it.”

But Kang’s heart began to race as the sound of the phone dialing was interrupted by a woman’s shrill voice, “Hi, this is Jennifer Terry from the State Department, how can I help?”

“Hello, I am Kang Pyong-il from The Very Glorious and Democratic Times and I am calling to inform you about Mr Hazel’s condition,” Kang said stiffly.

“Alright, please go ahead,” Jennifer replied.

“Mr Hazel’s condition is that he is starving,” Kang hastily said.

Jang’s eyes began to widen and he once again rose to his feet abruptly.

Jennifer was startled, “Excuse me!?”

Kang began to panic, “Uh…I-I mean Mr Hazel is, to quote, ‘starving to death’ and you can speak to hi-hello….HELLO!?”

There was a brief silence.

“DID THEY HANG UP!? CALL AGAIN QUICKLY!” Jang yelled as he rushed over to Kang.

Kang frantically dialled and re-dialled over the next minute as Jang anxious paced the room, but there was no response.

“You idiot! She must’ve left to tell the President what you said,” Jang cried as he took the jacket off the back of his chair and frantically rushed out the room.

“Where are you going boss?” Kang shrieked.

Jang replied, “To try and spend the last few moments I have with my family before we’re all vaporized.”

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Originally posted at the Writing Prompts sub-Reddit.    Prompt: You are an editor for the North Korean state-run satirical news agency, catering to the populace’s very developed sense of humor. Recently, you’ve started to realize that the satire isn’t translating very well, and other countries are taking your stories seriously.”

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Greg’s Bad Day

Greg is chef.

Greg woke up excited today as he was going to cook for a special guest.

Greg cooked his famous Quaking Pudding for his special guest.

The baked pudding Greg cooked consisted of cream, bread, currants, and nuts.

Unfortunately for Greg, someone who had a slice his pudding was allergic to nuts.

And unfortunately for Greg, it’s the year 650AD, the height of the Dark Ages, and nobody knows what allergies are.

And what is even more unfortunate for Greg, is the somebody who had an allergic reaction to the nuts is the poison tester for his special guest, the king.

 

Very Original Television Series Ideas I Have: #1

A satirical news show hosted by a male stand-up comedian. The show is named after how often it runs (daily or weekly) and/or the host’s name. The show primarily covers politics and has progressive leaning slant on political issues. Oh yeah, and “political issues” actually means stuff Donald Trump has said and/or done because nobody is really talking about him. Now, I know what you’re thinking, this idea sounds rather familiar……..

very original

But don’t worry because my show will be radically different. Do you see those small boxes at the top left of each screen that displays images that are somewhat relevant to the point the host is trying to get across? Well, I’m going to put that box at the top right corner instead!

 

 

A Mediocre College Student’s Seven Step Guide to Writing an Essay

Step 1: Resolution
The semester is over but following a seemingly endless succession of less-than-great results you may have made an overly optimistic vow to yourself to attain at least one A for an essay next semester.
 
Step 2: Preparation
There’s two weeks until the deadline. Great.
You have ample time to plan, research, draft and finalize the essay.
First, you’ll stare at the intimidating blank canvass of Microsoft Word and begin to mentally prepare yourself for the laborious task of writi-wait a second….Is that dust at the corner of your desk!?  
Your mom said her cousin’s step-son’s dog that you’ve never actually met and who lives approximately 1500 miles away has severe dust allergies.
Upon further inspection you find more dust scattered throughout the area.
If for some reason the dog comes to visit that would be disastrous.
This is an emergency that must be attended to immediately.
After that initial distraction, one thing has led to another and woops there’s only two days left until it’s due.
But hey, at least your room is dust-free for the first time since, well, coincidentally the last time you had to write an essay.  
    
Step 3: Re-evaluation
Alas, you’ve fallen victim to the seductress that is chronic procrastination once again and now you’re more panicked than a mosquito in a mannequin factory.
But stay calm, you can still salvage something.
 
Step 4: Motivation
Actually scratch that.
Don’t stay calm.
Embrace the emotional cocktail of anger, anxiety, stress and self-loathing as it will be the only way of you reaching the fifth step….
 
Step 5: Action
OK, now it’s time to (actually) begin.
The first step should be choosing which angle to take on your chosen question.
Think back to what your professor would say……
“The topic has many valid perspectives, including what we’ve covered in the lectures, and through a critical analysis you should evaluate which line of reasoning you wish utilise in order to support your argument.”
But you’re no oblivious freshman, you should be well aware that when a professor spews that line out they actually mean, “yeah, there are a lot of different points of view on this topic, but mine’s the best, so go with that.” 
After some research you should come across a journal article that enables you to regurgitate your professor’s opinion. Terrific.
However, remember their wise words, “don’t just mindlessly copy phrases from the journal article, present the argument in your own words and perspective, think critically and expand upon the information you have found.”
But unfortunately that requires a lot of time and effort, and by then you’ll probably have a full schedule of binge watching the latest season of Game of Thrones.
So instead aim to reach the bare minimum of paraphrasing required to avoid detection from plagiarism checking software.
This can be achieved by altering sentences you’ve found such as, “1945 was when the treaty was signed,” into, “the year in which they signed the treaty, was five years before 1950.”
 
Step 6: Addition
After repeating this process, you should have strung together a (semi) coherent piece of writing, but may have come to the stark realisation that it’s a few hundred words below the minimum word count.
This is a great opportunity to add depth to your essay.
You can provide counter-arguments to the key points you’ve expressed, and then refute them to effectively reinforce your argument and illustrate a comprehensive understanding of the broad spectrum of academic perspectives in relation to the subject.
But unfortunately, that also requires a lot of time and effort, and after watching the latest season of Game of Thrones you may have quickly discovered that Dave Chappelle has a new stand-up special out.
So instead boost your word count by substituting the handful of words that resemble something an at-least-somewhat-competent college student would use in an essay, such as “consequently,” with multiple, one or two syllable words a 12 year old with a limited grasp of the English language would use in their writings, like “as a result of this.”
 
Step 7: Pray for divine intervention
Now you’re almost there.
To finally reach the word count, inject an unnecessary, needless, pointless, redundant and excessive number of adjectives and synonyms into your essay.
Congratulations, you are ready to submit.
By now you have probably resigned to the fact that unless a miracle occurs, there’s a greater chance of Mitch McConnell wearing a green mankini whilst marching in support of gay rights at Mardi Gras (sorry for the mental image), than you obtaining the grade you desired.
 
Bonus Step: Repetition
But tell yourself that it’s okay, because you’ll try harder next semester……..