Monthly Archives: December 2012

From the Archives – 1443: Invention of Printing Press Allows for Mass Reproduction of Holy Texts, Naked Wenches

MAINZ, Holy Roman Empire – Area goldsmith Johannes Gutenberg announced last week that his latest invention, which he calls the “printing press,” now enables him to produce thousands of copies of naked lady pictures in a single workday. According to him, this innovation will revolutionize mankind’s abilities to self-gratify.

“You see, with the moveable tit system I invented,” said Gutenberg, “I can adjust the bosom placement of my printing press, allowing me to quickly switch between the bare maidens I intend to reprint.”

Hans Weisenberg, master of hedonism at the University of Würzburg, noted that prior to this invention pornographic images needed to be painted by a neo-classical art master or hand-copied by monks living in monasteries. Weisenberg said that this process could take anywhere from a day to several months.

“Besides,” he added, “they charge extra if you request something special like homoerotic three-ways or a knights-and-knaves roleplay scene.”

Given that now even the raunchiest woodcuts can be reproduced almost instantly, Weisenberg predicts that this innovation will allow greater access to autoerotic-facilitation material among the poor. Gutenberg has even released a booklet of ugly wenches, which he has marketed towards the peasantry with the slogan, “‘Tis like a brothel, but without the syphilis.”

The inventor admits that he initially had used the new device to reproduce bibles, but changed directions after deciding there likely wasn’t a future in the printed word.

“Besides,” said Gutenberg, “there are far more ducats to be made printing wenches in their smallclothes.”

With Addition of New Schools, Big Ten Conference Expands to All of Nation’s Most Depressing States

THE LINE FOR THE SOUP KITCHEN – The Big Ten entrenched itself as the football conference of choice for the un- and under-employed last week by adding the University of Maryland and Rutgers, the state university of New Jersey, to its ranks. The two schools joined the twelve current conference members to make up a solid collection of schools located in states that rank at or near the bottom in terms of economic growth and overall life satisfaction.

“The Big Ten has had a storied tradition of athletic accomplishment, academic integrity, and coming from states in which deindustrialization has caused massive economic hardship,” said Big Ten Commissioner Jim Delaney at a press conference. “From western Pennsylvania and Ohio, to Indiana, Iowa, and every part of Michigan that isn’t the part where rich Chicagoans vacation, Big Ten schools have always been located in a variety of places you would never want to visit unless you had to. We believe that the addition of Rutgers and Maryland affirms and continues this strong legacy.”

Big Ten officials have expressed hope that the addition of these schools will increase the conference’s viewership in the New York and New Jersey media markets, in which most television sets are still located under four feet of water, as well as the Baltimore and Washington D.C. markets, where a majority of residents use their televisions solely as hiding places for illicit drugs.

Fan reaction has been mixed, but the majority of Big Ten graduates believe that the move “makes sense,” given the sense of pity and hopelessness one feels when driving through the states of New Jersey and Maryland.

Said Michigan State graduate and Detroit native Barry Gordman, “I recently took a business trip to Baltimore and considering the fact that the majority of the city’s population appears to be homeless, the pervasive smell of untreated sewage, and the adorably ramshackle ‘downtown,’ I must say I felt right at home.”

Delany said the move was necessary after Notre Dame chose to move to the ACC last fall, thus depriving the Big Ten of any chance to reach the five people who still live in Gary, Indiana. “I always tell people the Big Ten will always be about two things,” said Delany. “Those two things that bring us together are our kinship of coming from rusty, decrepit, economically depressed, foul-smelling states and our irrational love for the Rose Bowl. And every time the Big Ten champion gets dominated by its Pac-12 counterpart in that game, I’d like to think we’re contributing to the soul-crushing sense of depression that permeates the lives of each and every Big Ten fan.”

Originally published: December 2012

Our Idiot Reporter: Dems, GOP Near Deal on So-Called ‘Fiscal Cliff’

Something About Vouchers, the Mortgage Interest Deduction, and Blah Blah Blah, Perhaps

THE DISTRICT OF COLOMBIA – Senate Democrats and Republicans are increasingly close to reaching a historic compromise to avert the “fiscal cliff” that the Mayans prophesied would occur in 2012, say people whose job it is to report on these things.

The deal, which calls for €17 quadrillion in new revenue, $11.63 in spending cuts, and does some other important stuff which isn’t entirely clear to this reporter, is likely to pull this nation’s economy back from the brink, or push it over the edge entirely, but definitely one of those two.

“This is a landmark deal, and I urge the House and the Senate to approve this legislation immediately,” said President Obama in reference to S.R. 1172, which is either the bill that fends off the fiscal cliff or the combination to my gym locker – as with much on Capital Hill these days, it’s not entirely clear.

Speaking at a press conference, anti-tax/pro-country-club advocate Grover Norquist called the compromise “an abomination of the highest order – one of the greatest affronts to our great nation since its co-founding by Ayn Rand and Jesus over two hundred years ago.

“Our federal government is far too large already, and to increase its size by hiring ¥282,000 new bureaucrats is simply unthinkable,” added Norquist.

The bill would require the Internal Revenue System to close all tax loopholes and eliminate all deductions, even the popular mortgage interest exemption, which allows taxpayers to stop paying for their mortgage if they don’t feel like it, according to my accountant. Gone, too, are the poll tax, the stamp tax, and the income tax, causing great consternation among white Southerners, the British, and Warren Buffett, respectively, apparently.

Because Congress has reached this compromise, the military will avoid large mandatory cuts to defense spending, including the cancellation of many research and development programs that were close to finding new ways of killing people with a remote control. The deal also negates automatic cuts to the nation’s federal education budget, which would have been a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad thing, say the nation’s kindergarten teachers.

The compromise is expected to patch everything up just right until at least the winter of 2013, at which point many economists expect the looming “fiscal asteroid” will cause an economic catastrophe, unless Congress acts promptly.

Originally published: December 2012

Despite Upcoming Basement Changes, Panda Express Somehow Staying in Union

Diarrhea-Inducing Menu ‘Will Not Change’

THE UNION – In the outdated, smelly and inexplicably sticky basement of the Michigan Union, one neon light has shined a bit brighter over the past few weeks.

Panda Express, having signed a longer lease than all other restaurants in the basement, will remain in the Union after renovations are completed this coming year. The restaurant wants to reassure the University that, despite changes to the rest of the basement, they will continue to undercook their meat, oversteam the rice, and provide patrons with the same shitty meals they have come to expect from Panda Express.

“Students can rest assured that they will continue to have unforgettable bowel movements following each dining experience with us,” said the branch owner, Annie Sullivan, in a press release. “Just because the Union atmosphere is changing does not mean that we will follow suit. We will never stray from the lukewarm, similar-tasting entrees that have gotten us this far.”

University administrators in charge of allocating the Union space to new tenants have made it clear that their choices would represent healthier options for students. Although simply spraying some Febreze in the putrid Tap Room or cleaning the disgustingly-gummy computer keyboards would improve the basement dramatically, University Unions decided the best way to solve the problem would be to replace several popular franchises. Like many students, Panda Express is disappointed to see its fellow restaurants leave.

“Those poor workers at Wendy’s,” sighed Panda Express cashier Annie Hong. “We used to shoo sleeping homeless people out of the tables together.”

“Somebody should definitely remind the Subway guys that they have to leave, though,” she added. “They’re usually pretty high.”

There is, however, an upside for Panda Express. With so many new healthy choices, Sullivan is convinced that they will be able to fill a very specific niche among the basement restaurants.

“We expect that students will eventually tire of the healthy, low-cal options that the Union will soon provide,” said Sullivan. “And when that happens, Panda will be there with open arms and copious free samples of mediocre substitutes for China Gate and TK Wu.”

Originally published: December 2012

Lecture Hall Eavesdropper Totally Understands Lindsay’s Problems

ANGELL AUD. B, MIDDLE LEFT SIDE – According to sources familiar with the situation, LSA freshman Craig Willis has been subjected to such a massive amount of gossip by the girls who sit in front of him in his STATS 250 lecture that, if they would talk to him even just once, he could solve all of their seemingly-intractable dilemmas just as easily as he is sure to conquer the fill-in-the-blank section on the upcoming quiz.

“I just don’t understand what’s so difficult about this,” said Willis, referring to one of Lindsay’s recent troubles with her boyfriend. “He’s clearly taking advantage of her, but she just can’t see that. Neither can her friends.”

Returning his attention to the notes the professor was adding to the slides, Willis briefly added that Lindsay should definitely try to hook up with that guy Chad because he seemed like a really nice guy when she met him at the baseball house party. He was totally into her and she never even gave him a chance.

Willis then added, referring to his Stats notes, that Baseball Chad seemed like one of the nice guys that make up the right 0.3% in the bell curve of single men. ”See, right here. Chad is definitely three standard deviations outside of the mean— in a good way.

“And, you know, Lindsay doesn’t need this trouble right now,” added Willis, who never would have known Lindsay existed before this semester. “She’s got her hands full with that jealous bitch Sarah.”

“I think she knows Sarah from orientation,” whispered Willis, annotating a graph with his red pen. Despite not knowing what Sarah looks like, Willis thinks she might be the random girl who sometimes joins the girls in front. “She’s a trainwreck. I heard that she’s given head to four dudes this month,” said Willis.

At press time, Willis had verified the example data point was, indeed, an outlier. Also, he confirmed that Lindsay had just bought the absolute “fugliest” Christmas sweater for Thursday night’s party.

Originally published: December 2012

Pres. Coleman Asks to be Called Great Aunt Cheryl From Now On

President Mary Sue Coleman announced at a press conference on Wednesday that from now on she should be referred to by students and faculty as Great Aunt Cheryl, or informally, Aunt Cher.

“You know, it’s just a change that’s been long overdue,” said Great Aunt Cheryl while sifting through her closet of floral-patterned wool-knit sweaters with her cat Wilma cradled gently in her left arm. “I mean, I’ve always felt like a Great Aunt Cheryl on the inside – I’ve had wild urges to attend scrapbooking parties for as long as I can remember – but it’s not been until recently that I’ve had the courage to tell others.”

Those close to Cheryl felt the name change was the next logical step, given her cheaply-colored and -barbered hairstyle, frequent use of reading glasses, and excessive application of particularly pungent Macy’s-brand perfume.

President Great Aunt Cheryl stated that she will continue performing her administrative duties, but plans to devote more time to making oatmeal-raisin cookies, clipping funny newspaper articles to send to her dear friend Dharma, and writing illegible birthday cards for her nieces and nephews.

Originally published: December 2012

Group Project Members Finding that Agreeing on Time, Place to Meet More Difficult than Actual Group Project

LOCATION TO BE DETERMINED – Members of Group B in Professor Thor Bergman’s PSYCH 372 class are finding it extremely difficult to compromise on both a location and a time to convene in order to finish their group project. According to sources, the simple feat of assembling six people in a singular place at a singular moment in time is proving more burdensome than the actual assignment itself.

“All we have to do is make a ten slide PowerPoint about gorillas using sign language,” said group member Sarah Waxman. “But it’s already taken us three days of constant emailing just to agree on meeting in the basement of the UGLi.”

Group coordination has been complicated by consistent deliberation over which time and place will not only fit all the members’ schedules, but will also facilitate the atmosphere most conducive for completing such an asinine project. In addition, after the group finally agreed to meet on Tuesday at 4 p.m., team member Jenny Firenzo rescinded her commitment due to “conflicts with another class.”

“TBS is re-airing the Seinfeld finale at that time,” said Firenzo, shrugging unhelpfully, “and honestly the 372 group can just make this PowerPoint without me. All we have to do is copy and paste some bullet points and add some pictures of monkeys.”

Efforts to reschedule the meeting have been hampered by group member Steven Wilkes’ unwillingness to meet before 3 p.m. due to his unique sleep schedule. He has repeatedly offered to work with others on the project from 1 to 4 a.m. in that alleyway by the Michigan Theatre, a place where he claims to spend most of his time anyway.

Additionally, group member Edward Gordon has yet to respond to any of the emails, and the rest of the team is skeptical that he will participate at all.

In reaction to the group’s discord, Group B leader Zach Grinell took the initiative to make the damn PowerPoint himself and email it to the entire group while asking for their input.

Despite the fact that nobody has actually responded to Grinell now that a passable project is complete, the group members have all decided that they are too lazy to critique their partners and will definitely give each other high marks on the project feedback evaluation.

Originally published: December 2012

Timmy Zeller, Inventor of Claw-Hammer Juggling, Dead at Age 7

Ann Arbor resident Timmy Zeller, who will be most remembered for inventing the sport of claw-hammer juggling in the moments leading up to his untimely demise, passed away this morning from injuries sustained while attempting to throw two metal hammers into the air and subsequently catch them. The prolific inventor was considered something of a wunderkind, having created the fork-tipped electrical outlet cleaner when he was only four years old. It was around that time that his production suffered a steep decline, perhaps due to the frequent visits he paid to the intensive care unit at the University Medical Center.

Sources close to Zeller note that he was also an accomplished chef, an impressive feat considering that he could only reach the ingredients beneath the kitchen sink, which held mostly cleaning supplies and ant repellent.

Funeral arrangements will be announced in the coming days. Zeller’s family asks that in lieu of flowers, donations be made to any organization that promotes kids not doing really stupid shit. They also urge parents to coordinate hammer purchases so as not to end up owning more than one.

Originally published: December 2012

Study: Gargoyle Writers Less Funny Than People Who Don’t Write Jokes At All

‘Horrible’ Latest Issue Deemed Vast Improvement

Writers for the Gargoyle “Humor” Magazine are less funny than virtually all other human beings, according to a study released Thursday by the International Institute of Actual Studies.

Researchers used brain-imaging technology along with survey responses to judge the reactions of 1000 individuals to material from the last five issues of the Gargoyle. They then compared the results with the participants’ reactions to control material generated specifically for the study.

Using proprietary software, IIAS researchers compiled random selections of text and imagery from a variety of sources, including the Michigan Daily, an introductory economics textbook, and Dane Cook monologues. It was then entered into a database, where it was converted into short stories, cartoons and various other formats often employed by the Gargoyle in its commendable but ultimately futile attempts at humor.

Lead researcher Richard Lu says that the findings were interesting, if not surprising. “What we discovered was that, in 98% of cases, the material produced at random by our program was judged to be far funnier than what the Gargoyle has been disingenuously passing off as comical for the last hundred or so years.”

Lu went on to offer a set of plausible explanations for the results, saying that “one possibility is that the source material used by our software was just so much funnier than what one typically sees in an issue of the Gargoyle, that it was bound to produce a funnier result.” He added, “I mean, have you read the Daily lately?” A secondary explanation offered was that the randomly-generated content, unlike the Gargoyle, lacked a strange, almost unhealthy fixation on the mating habits of early crustaceans.

Lu went on to acknowledge that the results were probably due to the Gargoyle’s emulation of the Daily’s content-creation method, which consists of clumsily smashing together bits of random text and images like a drunk toddler with a set of toy cars.

When reached by email for comment, Gargoyle spokesman Dave Snedeker’s only response was to send a crudely-drawn image of a bow tie-wearing turtle defecating in a mason jar.

Originally published: December 2012

Can We Find Some More Attractive Squirrel-Feeders, Please?

By a squirrel

Look guys, I’m not complaining. Love the food. Love it. But is there any way you could recruit a couple of cute human chicks for the Squirrel-Feeding Club? I mean, have you seen the current crop of female squirrels I’m working with? Bunch of fatties.

Now, I’m not saying that the current Club roster isn’t great. That guy Charlie, with the pube beard? He’s a real gentleman. Such soft hands too! And I love the fact that despite your aching backs, you’re still stuffing your backpacks to the brim. That’s the kind of dedication that will get you places. Not to mention, the smell of your breath after eating the beef stroganoff at the cafeteria! Ah, it’s poetry…brings me back to the rotting tree-hole I grew up in.

I’m not sure how you keep finding members, either, but I’m sure glad you do. What I want to ask, though, is, have you ever thought about bringing in some chicks? I mean, your meetings must have ladies forming lines out the door! Why not bring some of that talent in?

Honestly, I’d eat rotten peanuts off a piece of shit. In fact, I did that twice last week. But that’s not the point. If I’m going to eat them out of the hands of a human, I’d prefer that those hands be connected to a slender body with a nice pair of tits.

It’s not easy spending all this time away from my squirrel wife and squirrel kids to gather human food for the long winter ahead. And half the time I’m gone, my wife forgets to take her diabetes meds. So, I’d prefer to at least have a nice piece of tail to look at while I’m out here. Even if she’s bundled up in a coat, that’s fine. I’ve got an imagination.

And look, I’m really not complaining. We’ve got a great thing going on here. Us squirrels get free reign over the campus, constantly stuffed with all the junk food we can eat. And you, well, I don’t actually know what you guys get out of this, come to think of it. But it must be pretty sweet, otherwise it would be a huge waste of time for you.

Originally Published: December 2012