Local Children's Book Author, Greg R. Fishbone, says...

Archive for July, 2010|Monthly archive page

Stuffed Penguin Population Plummets, Scientists Baffled

In Penguins of Doom on July 29, 2010 at 10:51 pm

A startling report released today from the Stuffed Animal Preservation Society reveals an unexpected disappearance of penguins from the living room of local children’s author, Greg R. Fishbone. “The North American Stuffed Penguin once flocked all up and down these stairs,” Fishbone told a documentary film crew that’s been following this story. “It’s almost as if they’ve been moved aside to make room for something else…”

The penguins first arrived as gifts from fans and well-wishers around the release date of The Penguins of Doom in 2007. Over the years, the stuffed penguins adapted to an indoor environment bereft of their natural enemies, stuffed sea lions. They multiplied wildly, filling all available surfaces until this week when suddenly, they were gone, perhaps the victims of condo warming. “It has been a hot summer,” Fishbone admitted.

Scientists are at a loss to explain the sudden disappearance but warn that an open niche in the living room ecosystem will not remain empty for long. “Something new is coming,” said Fishbone. “Something bigger than a planet. Bigger than a star. Perhaps as big as a galaxy. We’ll just have to wait and see.”

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Writing Blog Moves to News Format

In Metablogging on July 28, 2010 at 9:44 pm

After nine years of sporadic online journalling, local children’s author Greg R. Fishbone announced on Tuesday that his popular writing blog, Let the Games Begin, would be shifting to a faux-journalism format.

“It’s a format that projects objectivity and professionalism even when none exist,” Fishbone explained to a large roomful of eager reporters. “Otherwise ordinary remarks, filtered through an imaginary roomful of eager reporters, seem to take on more weight and importance. One might even imagine a round of enthusiastic applause where, otherwise, there’d just be the sound of a snoring cat.” This statement was immediately greeted by a round of enthusiastic applause and a subdued meow.

Blogging experts predict the format change will allow the site to stand out more among a crowded field of competitors, leading to an expected 57% increase in readership. “Especially effective in this context are the use of made-up statistics and the citation of anonymous experts,” remarked one anonymous expert.

The change goes into effect immediately, and may be made retroactive with the help of creative editing of past posts. So is the journalism format here to stay? “Anything is possible,” said Fishbone, in an exclusive interview from his helicopter-based headquarters. “I expect this format to continue into the distant future, or at least until I get bored with it and go on to something else.”

Huzzah to Spain!

In Huzzah to..., Sports on July 14, 2010 at 7:08 am

The World Cup is over and the winner is Spain!  As predicted by a psychic mollusk. Possibly because Spaniards have a higher prevalence of feline brain parasites.

Suddenly, soccer is more than just playing for hours to break a one-one tie, so it should be no wonder that these games were more widely watched in the United States than any previous World Cup.

Even John Cleese was inspired to weigh in with a comparison of Association Football to American Football. His arguments: 1) Strategy in Association Football is determined by players rather than by coaches and offensive coordinators; 2) Play in American Football is broken up more often for commercial breaks; 3) American Football is violent; 4) American footballs aren’t spherical and therefore shouldn’t be called “balls”; and 5) American Football isn’t actually played with your feet.  Valid points, perhaps, but let’s address them one by one.

1. If the strategy you’re referring to is which direction and how hard to kick a ball, there’s no need to get an offensive coordinator involved. There’s little more to soccer, except that when I played soccer in 7th grade there were also slide tackles. Somehow, it was legal to slide into an opposing player and make them eat turf, and our strategy was to make that happen as often as possible regardless of who scored how many goals. In American football, there are passing plays, running plays, onside kicks, two-point conversions, clock management, and a variety of offensive and defensive formations. Some of these calls are made from the sidelines but so what? Advantage: American Football.

2. Commercials are not entirely evil. They can be as entertaining as the game itself, which is why so many commercial campaigns kick off during, or are exclusive to the Superbowl. Besides, if a soccer game goes for so long without built-in breaks, how do the fans refresh their snacks or use the bathroom without missing some of the action? Then again, it is kind of refreshing to see a game clock that doesn’t stop just because somebody dropped the pass or stepped out of bounds. Advantage: Association Football.

3. Violent? Heck, yeah! At least when somebody gets hit and falls down in American Football, you know it’s not a flop. Advantage: American Football.

4. Association Football and American Football (along with rugby, Australian-rules football, and other games) derive from the same ancestral game that was played in medieval Europe. The ball in question was “made of leather, fabric, or wood, a pig bladder filled with hay, or even a wooden block.” If you’re going for an authentic and historic size and shape for your football, it seems like anything goes. Soccer’s opted for a ball that rolls easily when kicked. Football’s gone for a design that can be spiral-tossed for long yardage. Advantage: Neither.

5. American Football isn’t played with your feet. True enough. Advantage: Association Football.

Result: Let’s call it a draw.