December 28, 2016
Spicy Satire for Traumatic Times
Editor’s note: It is getting extremely difficult to write satire lately, as even the most outlandish events possible have been occurring with alarming frequency. We’re trying to stay one step ahead of current events, OK? We really are. Wish us luck in 2017.
TOTAL ECLIPSE FORECAST FOR JAN. 20
NASA scientists have announced that on Jan. 20 there will be an extended total eclipse of the sun, making it the darkest day in at least 500 years.
Dominic Crelow, head astronomer of a new solar system exploration project headquartered at the Mauna Kea Observatory, said that in the last few weeks it has become clear that cosmic debris, speeding toward a black hole in a distant part of the galaxy, will obscure the sun so thickly that day will turn into night in the Western Hemisphere, with the blackest conditions in the mid-Atlantic states around Washington, D.C. “It’s an extraordinary phenomenon,” said Crelow, “because we don’t really know how long it will last, only that it will be very, very dark, especially in the Beltway area, for some reason.”
President-elect Donald Trump has been informed by national security officials the darkness will be so complete that he will not be able to use a teleprompter to deliver his inaugural address, so he has decided to tweet it, according to White House adviser Kellyanne Conway. “Of course, tweets can only be 140 characters long,” Conway said, “so he may have to do two or three.”
First Trump will take the oath of office, administered by Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts. Transition staff members are denying rumors Trump called Roberts to ask if he could swear the oath on his own book, The Art of the Deal, instead of on the bible, as has been customary since the time of George Washington. “But if it’s really dark,” said one senior aide to Trump, speaking upon condition of anonymity, “who’s gonna know?”
NASA officials said the eclipse could recur on “almost a daily basis” as the stream of dense, dark matter may continue to flow past the sun for a period of time that could be up to four years. Tweeting after being informed of the eclipse, Trump wrote: “Totally phenomenal, folks. They tell me it’s unpresidented.”