Zombie Hate-Crime Pierces Heartland of America

It was only a matter of time before America’s love/hate relationship for the dead would rear its ugly head. America’s growing addiction to living vicariously through the dead — namely vampires, zombies and Keanu Reeves – took a stake in the heart last weekend in my hometown Iowa City, when an alleged zombie was physically assaulted at a restaurant for breaking dead Jim Crow laws, which were supposedly buried over fifty year ago – only to be resurrected in the 21st century.

In regard to mainstream America’s pop-lust for zombies (e.g. “Shaun of the Dead,” “Zombieland,” and The Rolling Stones), this lust has been fed from a distance, usually through two-dimensional mediums – unless you get your fix through a plasma television. But now that zombies are feeling more comfortable in their decaying, leathery skin, they are more inclined to come out of the idiot-box and expose themselves to the mainstream public, slowly dragging themselves across tabooed invisible lines and intermingling with the living.

“Brainnnzzzzzz…may I have the next dance with your juicy brain, sexy mortal?”

Such was the case at Panchero’s Mexican Restaurant in Iowa City when a patron, who for whatever reason felt threatened and called the victim a “zombie” before first punching him in the eye, then the nose – inevitably breaking the latter. Iowa City police are still searching for the suspect and Crimestoppers has offered a reward of $1000 (or the cash equivalency of pickled brains) for any information leading to the arrest of the suspect. To help bag the alleged zombie-beater, police have released the following photo captured by a security camera from a nearby blood bank:

shaun of dead

Picture of alleged zombie attacker fleeing Panchero's and swinging at onlookers with a bloodied cricket bat.

Given when and where the alleged zombie attack took place should be a cause for grave concern. Most locals, dead and alive, know that Panchero’s is not a fertile breeding ground for zombies, especially amongst the after-hours drinking crowd, whose brains are stewed in cheap beer. Moreover, most of the clientele consist of hormonally-repressed college boys who were unable to score at several nearby meat-markets and need to fill the void with a two-pound burrito (your pun here). Granted, like most of their mortal counterparts who drink domestic beer by the pitcher, I’m guessing zombies also crave empty calories on occasion.

Because crimes perpetrated against zombies are rare (or are rarely reported by zombies; I’m guessing for every assault reported there are at least a 1000 that go unreported), news of the zombie assault was picked up by national news affiliates across the U.S. However, what the corporate-news lifeline failed to report is that Iowa City is a very welcoming community, especially when it comes to treating zombies as if they were alive and granting them the same rights and protections as their mortal counterparts.

Moreover, the zombie community has been more visibly active in Iowa City lately and refuses to stay underground — as if they were ashamed of being dead. To increase visibility during the daytime hours, the zombies staged a Zombie-Pride march in broad daylight in September, marching (if slowly dragging your clubbed feet counts as marching) from a local cemetery to downtown. They carried signs to ensure their voices could be heard, shouting lively chants such as “We’re zombies, we’re proud and we want to eat your brainzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.”

zombie march ic

"Brainnnzzzzzzzzzz...brainnnnzzzzzzzzzzz..."

Furthermore, to help zombies feel as if they fit in to the art scene, the Iowa City Community Theater staged “Zombie Prom” the past two weekends and encouraged zombies to out themselves and come to the musical in full regalia – a zombie coming-out party, if you will.

And since the attack, leaders from the zombie community and zombie sympathizers have publicly decried the senseless attack and are pressuring authorities to treat the assault as a hate crime. After all, zombies are fairly harmless, not to mention dead, yet some zombies who have been victims of assault still manage to maintain their compassion, as demonstrated by Freddy in “The Return of the Living Dead” when he was assaulted by Tina and said:

“See? You made me hurt myself again! I broke my hand off completely at the wrist this time, Tina! But that’s okay, Darlin’, because I love you, and that’s why you have to let me EAT YOUR BRAAAAAAAAAAAIIIIIIIIIIIINS!”

Besides, if America is truly concerned about a new class of citizens eating the collective brains of our society, I think it is safe to say we’ve already been doing that for years – slowly eating our young from birth:

zombie baby tv

(Disclaimer: no brains were consumed, at least literally, during the penning of this post.)

More Useless Advice That May One Day Kill You (vol. 1)

The Almighty advised me to not look back while He’s barbequing sin on an open flame. Forrest Gump taught me to keep running. And Therapist Bob told me that I need to stop living in the past and running from my problems.

And now all I have for you, dear Reader, is more useless advice that may one day kill you:

1. Never sleep with a cockroach unless they promise you, in writing, to take you with them into the post-apocalyptic paradise.

2. Vote OTHER

3. Walk softly and carry conceal a mid-range CS Super Soaker.

Is that a Super Soaker 50 in your pocket or are you just happy to see me? (your deserved groan here)

Is that a Super Soaker 50 in your pocket or are you just happy to see me? (your deserved groan here)

4. Rules were made to be amended (see U.S. Constitution, Geneva Conventions, and latest edition of Dungeons and Dragons Official Handbook)

5. Never trust anyone who tells you they LOVE dead baby jokes.

Autopsy: Man decapitated with mobile wire for telling one-too many dead-baby jokes to the wrong baby.

Autopsy: Man decapitated with mobile wire for telling one-too many dead-baby jokes to the wrong baby.

(Disclaimer: Please don’t kill the messenger, unless they advise you to do so – for a nominal fee of course.)

F*** Obama’s Real Health Care Reform

My favorite 4-letter F-word is, you guessed it: FREE.

Despite the cautionary advice that “nothing is free” or “you can’t get something for nothing,” I’m a sucker for free stuff. What can I say, I’m a public school teacher, and I know better than to jump into the middle of a rabid teacher scrum when post-it pads are at stake.

If anyone has mastered giving away free stuff with an invisible price tag attached, it’s Obama, Inc. Obama the Campaigner mastered giveaway marketing during his presidential bid and has lobbed these practices into his presidential money-raising strategy. During the campaign, my addiction to free-stuff helped me procure an “Obama ‘08” bumper sticker and button, neither of which I contributed any money — despite the accompanying solicitations for donations.

Regarding the latter, I will admit that I was thoroughly disappointed when my button showed up and it was the size of a quarter and could only be seen with satellite vision. I realize size isn’t supposed to matter, but I was too embarrassed to sport my new microscopic button in public, as if the button itself symbolized my free-stuff addiction. Either that or I had an affliction of button envy and was not about to compensate for my inadequacies by sporting a flag pin on the lapel of my collared t-shirt.

More recently, Obama, Inc. was giving away free bumper stickers to help push its health care reform through the dysfunctional aisles of Congress. All I had to do was sign a petition pledging my support for President Obama’s three principles for real heath care reform.

Actual Size?

Actual Size?

Unfortunately, I will have to wait 4-6 weeks until my free bumper sticker arrives. By then, the duct tape keeping my bumper attached to my car could become unglued, much like Obama’s health care objectives once they gets tied down with red tape and green lobby money in Congress. Although 6 weeks in Congress is a mere blink-of-the-eye in the big picture of getting things accomplished. As the old saying goes, “If you don’t like the way things are going in Congress, just wait a couple of years and you still won’t like the way things are going in Congress.”

In the meantime, I’ve decided to come up with my own bumper sticker ideas, one of which I may order from an online bumper-sticker company:

1. My Other Car Is a Health Insurance Payment

2. All I Wanted Was Real Health Care Reform, and All I Got Was This Lousy Bumper Sticker

3. Shit Cancer Bankruptcy Happens!

4. W.W.J.I.? (Who Would Jesus Insure?)

5. Coming to a Hospital Near You: Attack of the Right Wingnuts Socialized Health Scare

6. Underinsured Baby on Board

7. So it goes…!

8. FREE Obama’s Real Health Care Reform!!!

Feel F*** to vote for your favorite bumper slogan (or offer up your own, hence public option) in the COMMENTS below…

Top Ten Things That May Have Killed Michael Jackson

Michael The Thriller in Vanilla Jackson:  1958 -- 2009

Michael "The Thriller in Vanilla" Jackson: 1958 -- 2009

The King of Pop is dead, but like his missing glove, how he died remains shrouded in mystery, pending today’s autopsy. Speculation in Hollyplastic and around the world has already been a Twitter.

While Say Something Funny does not condone the exploitation of tragedy, we are not immune to the art of speculation – a euphemism for “we don’t know what the fuck we are talking about, but as long as there are folks who will listen to us talk about what the fuck we don’t know, we will keep espousing what the fuck we don’t know about (see blueprint for 24-hour news model).”

That said, here’s Say Something Funny’s speculation as to what may have (note passive voice here for litigation purposes) happened to the late Michael Jackson:

Top Ten “Things” That May Have Killed Michael Jackson

10. Overdosed on toxic combination of pigmentation pills and LaToya’s Psychic Network.

9. Overexerted himself moonwalking on treadmill.

8. Long-distance marriage to former wife Lisa Marie Presley finally caught up with him.

7. Copycat Death: Died of asphyxiation while listening to “Beat It” and paying an autoerotic tribute to late “Kung Fu” star David Carradine.

6. Bubbles, his pet chimp, unplugged his hyperbaric oxygen chamber.

While reminiscing about the salad days, Bubbles denies any rumored reports that he had any role in his masters death.

While reminiscing about the salad days, Bubbles denies any rumored reports that he had any role in his master's death.

5. Inhaling too much marijuana* while watching “The Wiz” and listening to Pink Floyd’s ‘The Dark Side of the Moon” from the point of the Cowardly Lion’s roar — not realizing it would have the same effects had he been watching the original “The Wizard of Oz”.

*Autopsy will show that it was hyperventilation, not the marijuana that killed him.

4. Late-night Demerol binge – at least that’s the story the Jackson family wants you to believe.

3. President Barack Obama (give the right wingnuts a few days to connect the dots here and spew how Obama’s somehow to blame on their radio outlets).

2. Withdrawals of media attention.

1. Michael Jackson is not dead, rather he was abducted by Peter Pan and the Lost Boys, who took him back to Neverland, where he can play out the childhood that was originally stolen from him.

Rest in Peace, Michael

You Know Unemployment Is Bad When…

Michigan Gov. Granholm proposes outsourcing Detroit to India to help bring down the state’s unemployment rate.

Brett Favre changes his Facebook career status from “Retired” to “Frictionally Unemployed.”

Uncle Sam applies for an extension on His unemployment benefits.

God is considering adding an eighth day to the week, so his unemployed creations can have a day off from looking for work.

Miss California Carrie Prejean gets fired for not living up to her end of the contract, which strictly forbids homophobia during business hours.

Just say world peace...cmon, just say world peace....

"Just say world peace...c'mon, just say world peace...."

Donald Trump fires himself, just so he has something to do.

White Supremacists, fearing layoffs beyond their Aryian control, attempt to unionize.

There’s a spike in unemployment rates for employees who work for the unemployed by standing in unemployment lines on behalf of their employers.

Former AIG CEOs start pawning their golden parachutes to help float them until their next unemployment check arrives.

Bloggin’ for nothin’ looks like a step up:)

You know the routine, dear Reader. Finish the sentence in the COMMENTS section below. What do you have to lose, other than your job (if responding while on The Man’s clock). Besides, it will look good on your resume.

Top Ten Signs You’re Obsessed with “Lost” (An Exercise in Futility)

LOST

I’ll be the first to admit that not only have I never been lost, but I have never watched the serial television show “Lost” as well. Regarding the former, I take the Buddhist approach to getting off course as not being lost, rather the beginning of a new, unchartered journey.Therapist Bob tells me I say that to mask my insecurities, to which I reference Odysseus as my role model. “Some role model, mon. Not only did it take Odysseus 10 years to find his way home from Troy, but he lost all of his men in the process.”

Regarding “Lost,” as a general rule of them I steer clear of serial television shows, so my life doesn’t evolve around the television programming. After all, who is programming whom? For millions of viewers ensnared by the serial formula, it appears “Lost” is in control, which leads to this week’s edition of David Letterman’s “Late Show” Online Top Ten Contest.

Due to the recent demise of voter turnout among SSF readers, my quest to win the Holy “Online Late Show” t-shirt has devolved from an obsession to an exercise-in-futility. That said, here’s my top-ten list of possible entries to this week’s Top Ten contest. Once again, I’m soliciting your help – or not. I’ve written ten possible entries for this week’s list, and it’s up to you to help me select the CHOSEN ONE from the list (for I can only submit one) that you think has the best chance of winning.

Just think, with your help, all of this could be mine

Just think, with your help, all of this could be mine

This Week’s Topic: Top Ten Signs You’re Obsessed with “Lost”

10. Wikipedia recruited you to edit its “Lost” page.

9. You’re following Dr. Jack Shepherd on Twitter.

8. Logged over 50,000 frequent flyer miles on flights between Sydney and Los Angeles with the dream of one day crashing in the South Pacific to be reunited with your newly, adopted extended family.

7. Sold all of your “Gilligan’s Island” action figures on eBay and replaced them with “Lost” ones.

6. Too proud to stop channel surfacing, consult your TV Guide, and openly admit you are looking for “Lost.”

5. You have a Fathead of Hurley mounted on ceiling over your bed.

"Good morning, Sunshine..."

"Good morning, Sunshine..."

4. Gave up life-long search of Atlantis to pursue quest for “Lost” island.

3. Legally changed your name to Sayid Hassan Jarrah.

2. Just in case of an emergency, you sleep with a conch shell underneath your pillow.

1. You actually get “Lost”

Don’t forget to indicate (in the Comments) which ONE of these I should submit to the Top Ten Contest.

A Bike to Work Week Survivor’s Guide (2nd Edition)

Every time I hit the streets on my bike, whether it’s commuting to work or riding downtown, I always get the sick feeling that I’ve forgotten to do something:

-Fill tires with air
-Check rider-side air bag
-Update last will and testament.

Regardless of how well I think I’ve prepared for my ride, taking into account every possible safety measure, I’m convinced there are legions of Motorist Muggles hell-bent on killing me and my biking brethren by any means necessary.

When I was learning to drive, my father drilled defensive driving into my head to the point that we rarely left the driveway during raccoon mating season in fear that I would back over a couple of coons in mid-copulation. He ascribed to the paranoid tract of the Defensive Driving School: “Now son, assume every vehicle is out to hit you and you will be prepared for the worst-case-scenario.”

I apply the same principal when bike riding, with a few slight modifications: “…Assume  every vehicle is out to hit kill you and your you will should be prepared for the worst-case-scenario two-tons of reinforced fiberglass trying to mow your ass down.” Therapist Bob thinks I’m being too paranoid, but between you and me, I think he secretly wants to see my body splattered across the pavement.

To help remind the Four-Wheeled Muggles that it is not open season on bicyclists, this week is nationally recognized as Bike to Work Week (BWW). However, Carbon Footprints Without Borders, contending every week is BWW, does not recognize any perimeters placed on the reduction of one’s emission of greenhouse gases.

This is my second year participating in BWW, and I’ve learned a few lessons from my rookie years, which I’ve applied to this year. With this in mind, I would like to impart some advice, hoping that you, dear reader and potential BWW convert, will not follow in my carbon footprints and make the same mistakes I did.

1. Preparation is the Key

This should go without saying, but I had to say it anyway. I will skip over the obvious (e.g., a bicycle) and focus on the three most important elements of biking attire: bike shorts, helmet and child bike trailer (no kid necessary). True, biking shorts may not be the most aesthetically pleasing to the eye, but on a pragmatic level they may one day save your life. Ask any proctologist.

Wearing a helmet should be a no-brainer, but Americans have always harbored a libertarian streak and choose to ride without helmets, thus grasping the delusional reins of freedom’s last ride. Whenever one of my sons spots a bicyclist or motorcyclist not wearing a helmet, he asks: “Dad, why aren’t they wearing a helmet?”

This prompts my patented response: “Well, son, it appears they don’t have any investments to protect.”

This year I’ve added a child trailer to my bike not only to haul all of my work stuff but to serve as a safety buffer as well. Hopefully, the Four-Wheeled Muggles still clinging to the premise of the seminal film, “Death Race 2000,” may think twice about taking me out, thinking I have a baby on board. Although this defensive strategy doesn’t pan out in some Death Race Leagues, which award more points for running over babies.

Death Race 2000 Car: "Double bonus: A biker pulling a child. Yummy..."

Death Race 2000 Car: "Double bonus: A biker pulling a child. Yummy..."

I’ve even considered putting a baby mannequin in the trailer, preferably a clown reminiscent of the one in “Poltergeist,” to help fend off would-be Vehicular Homicidal Maniacs.

2. Avoid Reading Online Comments Responding to Articles about Biking

I’m perplexed and shocked by how many people out there, especially in the anonymous abyss of cyberland, harbor deep-seeded animosity toward bikers. Reading these comments will only serve to exacerbate any fears a biker may have about being run over by a road-raged motorist, whose life may have been inconvenienced by having to temporarily slow down for a biker.

Here’s a sampling from last year’s Bike Haters during BWW (responses originally posted to various articles on the “The Des Moines Register’s” (online)):

Jules 1965 wrote: In the town where I live [Carroll, Iowa}, I have to tell you there are some days I would just love to tap a bicyclists and hope they fall over.…use the trails or get off the streets and roads as I don’t need to be hitting you accidentally of course…

SSF: But of course… “Four Wheels Good, Two Wheels Bad!”

Bloghead wrote: If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a thousand stinking times: Bicyclists do NOT belong on the roads with 10,000 pound death traps…

SSF: So who is driving or trapped in these death traps?

Moreover, shocktheallah wrote: …You fools want to mess with 4000lb vehicles, then expect the consequences….

SSF: “Four Wheels Good, Two Wheels Bad!” (sinister laugh here)

Given this wrath, bicyclists can only hope these commenters’ mothers don’t ever let them out of the basement. Better yet, they should stay locked up indefinitely, but for humanity’s sake, they should be allowed a monthly conjugal visit form the Geek Squad to have their computers fully serviced.

I’m not quite sure where all the animosity towards bikers comes from, but it appears that the hatred is spawned by anecdotal evidence of a biker who did not obey the traffic laws, therefore all bikers are evil lawbreakers.

Jules1965 wrote:  They don’t belong on the streets with cars, especially if they are not abiding by the rules of the road. There is always one cyclists in town who seems to think he can go through every stop sign there is and I’m waiting for the day he gets hit…

SSF: Now Jules1965, lest we forget the wise words from our predecessors:

“He who hath not committed a moving traffic violation, cast the first 10,000 pound death trap.”

3. Plan Your Route Safely, not Geometrically

In the geometric world, the shortest distance from point A to point B is a straight line, but this doesn’t always translate well in the bike world. For bikers, the quickest route is not always the safest route, especially since most of the main arteries are packed with 10,000 pound death traps on wheels, looking for a quick fix to suffice their blood lust.

5. Take the Pain

Unless you are already in decent physical shape, you will feel the pain, especially you know where. It’s best not to think about it and whether you will ever have the capability to reproduce again.

Appendix A: BWW by the numbers (in Iowa):

Number of commuting miles pledged: 61,464

Estimated gallons of gasoline saved: 3,414.70

Estimated amount of money saved on gas: $7,136..65

Appendix B: Lone Bicyclist of the Apocalypse Index (That’s Me)

Number of pledged miles: 48

Estimated gallons of gasoline saved: 2

Estimated amount of money saved on gas: $4.30

Anticipated Four-Wheeled hit attempts: 5

Anticipated unsolicited gestures from passing motorists: 13

Total carbon footprint reduction: Priceless

Anticipated legal fees for defending myself in Mastercard parody lawsuit: Priceless

Top Ten Little-Known Symptoms of the Swine Flu (An exercise in futility)

swine-flu-mask

H1N1 Flu, formerly known as the “Swine Flu” formerly known as “Squealer’s Revenge” formerly known as “The Plague” formerly known as “Prince,” has reared its ugly head from the muck to help distract Americans, at least temporarily, from the economic crisis and Lindsey Lohan’s latest exploits. Speaking of the latter, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) have documented more cases of diseases linked to Lohan than the origins of the latest strand of swine flu.

Nonetheless, the swine flu has been the butt of many jokes as of late, and it’s only a matter of time before the CDC declares a national emergency and quarantines swine-flu jokes before they spread any further.

Until then, free-range swine flu jokes will continue to roam aimlessly, rearing their heads across the comedic spectrum and popping up online and on late-night talk shows, which are not immune to the epidemic. Such is the case with this week’s edition of David Letterman’s “Late Show” Online Top Ten Contest.

Due to the recent demise of voter turnout among SSF readers, my quest to win the Holy “Online Late Show” t-shirt has devolved from an obsession to an exercise-in-futility. That said, here’s my top-ten list of possible entries to this week’s Top Ten contest. Once again, I’m soliciting your help – or not. I’ve written ten possible entries for this week’s list, and it’s up to you to help me select the CHOSEN ONE from the list (for I can only submit one) that you think has the best chance of winning.

Just think, with your help, all of this could be mine

Just think, with your help, all of this could be mine

This Week’s Topic: Top Ten Little-Known Symptoms of the Swine Flu

10. Facebook profile has been quarantined by Centers for Disease Control

9. Miss Piggy-induced nocturnal emissions

8. Brash cravings of filleted Rush Limbaugh (your choice of side: Oxycontin or hydrocodone)

7. Family doctor puts you on low-media diet without telling you why

6. Every time you play Pass the Pigs you roll “Making Bacon”

"Making Bacon!":  Got Swine Flu?

"Making Bacon!": Got Swine Flu?

5. Occasional hypochondriac irregularities

4. Development of unhealthy relationship with Porky Pig action figure

3. Cold Cut Sweats that make skin break out into Bacon Bits

2. Centers for Disease Control starts following you on Twitter

1. Sudden impulse to write SPAM Haikus filled with tasty swine-flu allusions:

Sacred sweaty meat
Released from its tin captor:
Harbinger of death

Don’t forget to indicate (in the Comments) which ONE of these I should submit to the Top Ten Contest.

SSF News Update: Wardrobe Malfunctions and Re-branding the GOP

Wardrobe Malfunctions: Where’s the Justice?

The U.S. Supreme Court revived the infamous Janet-Jackson supposed wardrobe-malfunction case, ordering a lower-court (yeah, it sucks being on the bottom) to revisit the case. The FCC fined CBS $550,000 for indecent exposure when Janet Jackson’s nipple was exposed to 90 million viewers who tuned in to the 2004 Super Bowl halftime infomercial. Had it been her brother Michael who had exposed his nipple for the 9/16ths of a second, the FCC noted the fine would have been double.

The Supreme Court’s change of heart arose last week, when Justice Antonin Scalia, upon hearing that his left-leaning colleague Justice David Souter was planning on retiring after the current session, got so excited that his wardrobe malfunctioned, thus inadvertently exposing himself to the rest of the Court.

Justice Antonin Scalia: "Please don't make me stand up right now. I"m begging you, please..."

Justice Antonin Scalia: "Please don't make me stand up right now. I"m begging you, please..."

In the decision sent down to the lower court, Scalia briefly justified the decision to revisit the case: “Shit happens.” Off the record, Scalia said: “I haven’t been that excited since my good friend Dick Cheney nearly shot me in the face while duck hunting in Louisiana.”

Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg was unmoved by Scailia’s wardrobe malfunction and perfunctory responded: “I always knew Scalia was overcompensating for something.”

Justice Souter said he was flattered his announcement excited Scalia in such a fashion but was not swayed to stick around. “I still plan on retiring in June and heading to the remote woods of New Hampshire where I will give up deliberating and live deliberately,” Souter said.

Re-Branding: America’s New Improved Party Team

In an attempt to find and redefine itself, the Republican Party nixed a backpack trip across Europe and opted for a cross-country tour of America. Billed “Easy Repugs,” the GOP adopted the promotional phrase for their tour: “The GOP went looking for moderate Republicans in America and couldn’t find them anywhere.”

Sarah Palin (left), Mitt Romney (Center), and Jeb Bush (right) cruise across Texas en route to Gov. Bobby Jindal's house in Louisiana

Sarah Palin (left), Mitt Romney (Center), and Jeb Bush (right) cruise across Texas en route to Gov. Bobby Jindal's house in Louisiana

To help cope with its identity crisis and rebrand itself to younger voters, the Republican Party is considering changing its party’s name. The few remaining right-wing members suggested the following name changes to help recruit new followers: Hyperbole Party, Party of Know, Reagan Throwback Party, Focus on the Family Party, WTF Party or the Twitter Party.

In related news, the Dallas Cowboys, formerly known as “America’s Team,” decided it needs to recast itself after suffering from image problems the past couple of seasons. The marketing division, under the direction of owner Jerry Jones, decided to update the Cowboy’s name to “The New Improved Dallas Cowboys (Now 97% Jessica Simpson free).

Swine Flu: What’s in a Name?

"Read my lips (which one day become hotdog ingredinets): I am not to blame for the swine flu."

"Read my lips (which one day become hotdog ingredinets): I am not to blame for the swine flu."

What’s in a name? That which we call the Swine Flu
By any other name would still kill you.

Nonetheless, the latest global epidemic has the name-calling communities in a mudslinging stir, especially the swine aficionados and pork producers, who feel the deadly influenza uprising will systematically slaughter the pig trade.

Having been bred and raised in Iowa, a leading pork-producing state, I can see how the unsolicited branding of the swine flu could breed misconceptions, fear, paranoia, and hatred in the pigheaded global community, in particular anti-swine extremists who have already declared a jihad on Porky Pig – America’s most beloved stuttering swine: “Th-th-that’s all folks!”

Clearly these folks aren’t pop-culturally learned, for if they had seen the 1985 film “Porky’s Revenge,” they would know that ol’ Porky Wallace (see pic) is a big force (pun intended) to be reckoned with, especially if your name is Meat.

Porky Wallace:  Oh, I got your jihad right here...

Porky Wallace: "Oh, I got your jihad right here..."

Moreover, some religious sects are up in hooves over the name (and bad puns) over the swine flu. Israel Deputy Health Minister Yakov Litzman said the reference to pigs is offensive to Muslim and Jewish sensitivities to pork and suggested we should call it the “Mexican flu.” Even though the latest strand of swine flu allegedly began in Mexico, I don’t imagine that Mexicans will take too kindly to this name change.

I imagine there’s one sect of the global population that is quite pleased with the swine flu name: the pigs. I wouldn’t be surprised if the pigs, stealing a chapter from George Orwell’s cautionary tale “Animal Farm,” are the ones behind fanning the anti-swine propaganda with an updated slogan:

“Four legs deadly, two legs better watch the fuck out.”

(This slogan was sponsored by the International Swine Workers Union to commiserate this year’s International Workers’ Day (May 1).)

"Pig Brother is Watching You!"

"Pig Brother is Watching You, Imperialist Humans!"

I suspect these pissed-off pigs are still bitter when the Communists’ and Socialists’ propaganda machines butchered their name by attaching it to western capitalists: Imperialist Pigs

In an attempt to ease fears in the global swine community, which has already lined up to ban pork imports from the United States and Mexico, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, led by our former governor Tom Vilsack, announced that the swine flu is no longer the “swine flu,” rather “H1N1 flu.” Yeah right, I’m sure that name is going to stick and bleed like a stuck pig into American discourse.

Worse than HINI flu, the European Union announced yesterday that they will now call the new virus “Novel Flu Virus,” which I guarantee will be shortened by the media to the “Novel Flu.” I realize novel means “new” but as a high school English teacher, the prospect of attaching novel to a deadly virus in mind boggling. While pushing novels on to unsuspecting young readers over the last eight years, I’ve had a hard enough time closing the deal, when students contend: “Why should I read? Our president doesn’t read and he got elected not once, but twice.”

My only defense to this anecdotal evidence: “True, but he was elected by an electorate that doesn’t read regularly, and now look where that has landed us.”

If health officials were smart, they would revamp their flu epidemic marketing strategy and change the name by replacing swine with something they want people to fear, hate and/or avoid like the plague.

Here are some suggested swine substitutions, compliments of Say Something Funny:

Deep-Fat Fried Flu

Hollywood Sequels Flu II

Rush Limbaugh Flu (although, given the literal girth of this influenza strand, it’s completely unavoidable)

One Flu Over the Cuckoo’s Nest

Corporate Farm Flu

American Idle Flu

Poo –Too-Tweet Flu (or Twitter Flu)

Any Movies Starring Keanu Reeves Flu

Dick Cheney Flu (or Dick Jokes Flu)

That’s What She Said Flu