Thursday, December 25, 2008

Scoop! Of Holiday Terror

Last night, as the Alameda Daily Noose and I were nodding over a stack of back issues, we heard an unusual rustling sound in the hallway. Before our startled eyes, there appeared in the doorway the apparition of a long-departed colleague who went to work for one of those worthless fishwrap "newspapers" (not that we are bitter). She was clothed in a smock made of yellowed tear sheets, and weighted down with copies of the AP Style Manual and other journalistic tomes.

"Rog," the phantom intoned, "Wherefore dost thou sit on thy tuchus when the city hungers for Noose?" With this, she waved a sheaf of papers before her, and the stack of back issues of the Noose rose in the air, enveloping us in a cloud of computer print-outs. When the pages settled, we beheld a vision of Nooses past. Lon Gedoff and Brenda Karl were there, complaining loudly. Dave Williamson had cornered Brenda Snook, and was convincing her that her tax money was being misspent. Such a charming scene had scarce presented itself to us these many years, and the Alameda Daily Noose and I were touched by the Spirit of Grump.

Then, the vision dissolved, only to be replaced by a scene of the present. Right-thinking Alamedans were rising from their beds, rushing to their computers, and searching for the latest edition of the Alameda Daily Noose. Imagine their surprise when no new Noose met their eager gaze. We could see the disappointment in their eyes, soon replaced by a curious indifference that chilled the Alameda Daily Noose and me to the bone.

Once more, the paper-clad phantom waved her hand, and the figures before us fled, to be replaced by a sobering street scene. Music was playing, there were people everywhere, new shops attracted curious shoppers, and strangers waved to strangers merrily parking in front of each other's houses. No-one read grumpy letters to the editor, much less wrote them. In other words, it was a nightmare world the likes of which infects the most unwholesome sleep of the Alameda Daily Noose and me. Nowhere was there grumpiness to be found. The art of complaining was clearly lost, as people on the street greeted one another with compliments and observations of the fine weather.

"Oh, spirit," we cried to the one draped in ad copy, "is this vision what will be, or only what may be?" Her only answer was to hand us a fresh quill pen, dripping ink.

We awoke with a start, and a rush of relief. Then, looking down, we beheld that same quill pen, still wet with ink. What good this would be to an internet Noosepaper, we have no idea, but casting the apparently symbolic quill aside, we rushed to the computer and began to scribe the edition of the Alameda Daily Noose that you see before you now.

Grumpy Christmas, Alameda, and Chuck Corica bless us, every one!

1 comment:

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