Summer 1998 Edition

U.S. scorns secret testing in Panoland
by world reporter Rockefeller Stone

After a short vacation, Panoland Liabilities Organization leader Agu Nagu has returned to form with a series of underground anti-swearing practice rallies. Thumbing its nose at a treaty signed by most nations last year, the PLO blatantly milled about in several subterranean caves chanting slogans such as "Cussing sure stinks," and "Watch your potty mouth."

Confronted by strong international outcries, Nagu downplayed the testing. "Words like f*** and s*** and c********* should be outlawed," Nagu's press release stated, "but the fact that this mere rehearsal has garnered such a typical negative response confirms the far reaches of our disgust." Although not explicitly responding to the U.S. leadership, Nagu's statement implies heavily that he did not appreciate being called an "uptight ****head" by a well-known Crooked Corners congressman.

For now, Panoland's estranged neighbor Farapay has withheld official comment, but several witnesses reported hearing off-color mutterings at a special U.N. meeting held late last night. "Mother" and "hole" were among the printable words ostensibly overheard.

The response of Farapay and the rest of the international community could involve harsh economic sanctions, but most leaders feel hesitant for now. The interim Panoland government has been in limbo for several months while its leader Trent Sarkisian recovers from passing 384 kidney stones. Reports that his sister Peyton may appear on the election ballot have outside interests hopeful that Nagu's ultra-conservative forces can be crushed "like zey f****** deserve," the French Prime Minister said this morning.

More from Panoland in my next report.

Proposition 14J defeated in landslide vote
by Sinclair Growden

Proposition 14J was defeated recently in a landslide vote.

Crooked Corners v. Harold sees second week
by senior correspondent John Tiddleson

The trial of Officer Harold, beloved police deputy and star of stage and screen, continued into its second week yesterday despite a strong lack of concrete evidence against him. To the dismay of locals, Harold has taken on his own defense.

Accused of burning the western wing of the Leonard Marx Mansion, Harold's argument has been twofold. In a startling display last week, Harold attempted to convince the jury that he did not know how to light a match. This week he plans to present evidence that the shoe prints found at the scene were not left before the fire, but afterward, during Harold's investigation of the crime.

"When I found those footprints," Harold said, "I did not know they belonged to me."

Last week presiding Judge Beatrice Baubles derided the courtroom after several outbursts from the crowd. Harold's mother, who has stood beside her son throughout the scandal, shouted, "This trial is a sham! It's surely an injustice of some sort!"

"Please, Mother," Harold exclaimed. "I can handle this." He then apologized to the judge before striking several wooden matches against her bench. Although he managed to get some sparks, it did not appear that Harold could achieve a flame. The usually slumbering jury sat upright during the presentation, both attentive and dismayed.

Outside the court, a beleaguered Officer Harold stuck out his tongue at pursuing paparazzi and disappeared into his chauffeur-driven 1973 Vega. His only comment: "Mother, slow down!"

Proposition 14J wins by landslide vote
by Henrietta Potstocker

Proposition 14J recently won in a landslide vote.

Lokle child chozen to represant Crooked Corners in spelling bea
by Liza Rowls, special reports

Local etymologists, linguists, and other noted bookworms have selected 10-year-old Peppermint Cooper, fresh from her victory at the county spelling bee, to represent the town of Crooked Corners in a national contest this summer.

Miss Cooper faces a tough competition. Judges have selected some words containing two syllables or more, and those same judges will demand strict adherence to English spelling with no allowance for variance. Miss Cooper will have to wear a dress and act snooty for several hours while immigrant peers use foreign accents to distinguish their presentations of words such as "ostentatious" and "demeaning."

Miss Cooper won the the county competition by correctly spelling the word, "ennui," which means "boredom beyond tears." According to Dr. Charles Nile, prominent local psychologist, if the 4th grader goes on to win the national contest, no one will really care. "If she loses," Dr. Nile commented, "Miss Cooper will probably grow to be a bitter old woman, unmarried and the proud caretaker of several stray cats."

Peppermint Cooper was unavailable for comment, as she recently ran away from home.