In the News

Do you ever notice when you look in the paper or turn on the five o'clock news it's always stories of things going badly? It's always violence and crime, scandals and corruption, wars and fear. And while I think it's a good idea to be informed about world events and to know what's going on in your own town, I always wish there was some humor in reporting, something to lighten the otherwise gloomy and dismal mood. This writing prompt asks you to help address this shortcoming.

For the last few years I've been reading the satirical news site The Onion (I'm sure some of you will be familliar with their high-quality, hard hitting investigative reporting). The writers on this website often take a story from the mainstream media and twist it into a joke, and sometimes they just flat out make up ridiculous stories and pass them off as news. So following this lead, I've come up with a few headlines for news stories that never made the front page.

If you're interested in taking up this prompt, try to write a story to go along with a headline. Alternatively, you may want to write up a spoof version of a real news story you find, or come up with your own make-believe headline.

======================================

ALIEN SPACECRAFT GIVEN $250 PARKING TICKET
BALMATRON SAYS "I'M NOT PAYING"

======================================

GLOBAL WARMING LINKED TO BURPING
BEER DRINKERS OF THE WORLD REACT WITH SHOCK

======================================

PRIME MINISTER SAYS CIGARETTES "ARE JUST FINE"

======================================

NEOLITHIC MAN FOUND FROZEN IN GLACIER
REVIVED AFTER DEFROSTING
CAN'T GET ENOUGH HOT CHOCOLATE


=====================================

SCIENTIST DISCOVERS ULTIMATE SECRET IN FORTUNE COOKIE

=====================================

GERBIL SAVES MAN FROM SHARK ATTACK

=====================================

ROSIE O'DONNELL ADMITS SHE'S ANNOYING

====================================

POLICE LOOK FOR ENGLISH PROFESSOR SERIAL KILLER
CALLS HIMSELF THE "DECONSTRUCTIONIST"

====================================

ZOMBIE OUTBREAK REPORTED IN TORONTO

====================================

MCDONALD'S GOES VEGAN
COWS BREATHE SIGH OF RELIEF

====================================

ATLANTIS FOUND NEAR GREENLAND
PRESIDENT: "WE WERE HERE ALL ALONG"

====================================

GOVERNMENT TO INCREASE ARTS FUNDING

====================================

ANIMALS ESCAPE FROM ZOO
LAST SEEN IN LAS VEGAS

14 comments

Harlequin said...

ok-- I am working on a bit of a perverse one, but I have been inspired by Jon, the master of the perverse and irreverent....

here is the train of thought so far... there is this convention of vegans who descend on a big city and decide to re-enact Lady Godiva's ride on the horse but with their own distinctly idiosyncratic twist....

I'll let you know when it has come into full flower....

January 26, 2010 at 7:43 AM
Anonymous said...

APATHETIC PROCRASTINATORS TO VOTE IN UPCOMING ELECTION...WHENEVER THEY... AS SOON AS THEY...UMMMMM....OH WHO GIVES A @#%*!

February 15, 2010 at 3:59 PM
Anonymous said...

AVIARY PROPRIETOR FLEW THE COOP

February 15, 2010 at 7:27 PM
Anonymous said...

KLEPTO AMNESIAC FORGETS TAKING VICTIM'S WALLET

February 15, 2010 at 7:31 PM
Anonymous said...

JUDGE SENTENCES CHRONIC WHINER TO VOLUNTARY SERVICE AT CHEESE FACTORY

February 15, 2010 at 8:05 PM
Anonymous said...

TIGER CAUGHT BEATING AROUND THE BUSH SAYS HE'S NOT OUT OF THE WOODS, YET.

February 20, 2010 at 9:38 PM
Anonymous said...

WOMANLY WILES WOO WOEFUL WOODS

February 21, 2010 at 3:11 PM
Anonymous said...

GENUINE GENUFLECTING GIRAFFES GENERATE GELIGNITE

February 22, 2010 at 1:42 PM
Anonymous said...

WITTY WORDSMITH WONDERS WHY WE WANT WHATCHAMACALLITS

February 22, 2010 at 8:55 PM
Jon Parsons said...

Dear Anonymous,

I must say, I'm quite impressed with the constant stream of HEADLINES you've come up with. These are all great, and make me think that you're quite the witty wordsmith yourself... Keep going!

Also, you'll have noticed that I've been neglecting this blog a little lately... sorry for this. I've been in the middle of a story that's got me captivated right now... but I hope to be here more regularly from now on.

February 23, 2010 at 2:12 AM
Anonymous said...

MISGUIDED MISANTHROPE MOURNS MISDIRECTED MISER

February 28, 2010 at 2:16 PM
Anonymous said...

MEGALOMANIAC MUSHROOM MUNCHING MUNCHKINS MAY MULTIPLY

March 4, 2010 at 11:06 AM
Anonymous said...

WEEBLES WOBBLE WHILE WICKED WITCH WRESTLES WIZARD

March 6, 2010 at 11:52 AM
Anonymous said...

SPEWING SUDS SEND SHOALS SWIMMING SIDEWAYS

March 7, 2010 at 12:22 PM