Rabid raccoon to run for mayor!

Cites extensive experience collecting and sorting garbage as a political credential

The race to succeed Bob Cashell as Reno’s next mayor has attracted a number of candidates from the city’s political arenas and the private sector. One name that might be unfamiliar to many locals is Patchy, a 2-year-old Reno native, and a resident of the city’s Old Southwest neighborhood.

A Raccoon-American, he is the first Nevadan of Procyonidae descent to run for office in the city.

Patchy currently owns and operates a small business that tests the effectiveness of home security systems. In the past, he has worked in the demolition and garbage removal industries.

“There are important issues that affect many residents of the city that aren’t getting any attention,” said Patchy at a press conference announcing his candidacy last week. “I haven’t heard any of the other candidates mention the importance of maintaining Reno’s sewer system. For many Renoites, those sewers serve a secondary function as an important transportation corridor.”

Another issue that Patchy says is central to his campaign is the local food movement. He says that a regionally focused agriculture is one key way to revitalize the local economy. He has proposed expansive subsidies for local farmers and supports expanding the city’s recycling program. In fact, he views his extensive past experience with collecting and sorting garbage as one of his political credentials.

“Apple cores, banana peels, used Doritos bags—those are all things that can be recycled and reused, either to eat or perhaps to build a nest,” he said.

Some local political commentators have speculated that Patchy’s status as Rabies-positive could become a potential campaign issue. But Patchy says his pre-existing condition has taught him the importance of access to health care. He says he has empathy for struggling families whose lives can be derailed by an illness.

“There’s been a long-standing effort to demonize those of us who live with rabies,” Patchy said. “It’s a stigma I’ve lived with for the last two weeks since I first contracted the disease. Just because I’m prone to sudden fits of hissing and foaming at the mouth, and an irrational fear of water, doesn’t mean I’m not fit to lead the city of Reno.”

—Brat Bi Numbnuts

Hang it up!

Less than a decade after the revelation that frequent talking on cell phones causes brain cancer, a corollary, and seemingly obvious related fact has been disclosed by Stanford researchers: Cell phone radiation shrinks testicles and pummels ovaries’ DNA with corrupting rays that threaten the future of humanity.

“It was less of a problem before jeans manufacturers started putting ’bling’ on back pockets, but once the bling went on, the phones moved to front pockts to keep them from getting scratched,” said lead researcher Ian Phlegming.

“Little” Jimmy Tate was one of the first victims to come forward: “I couldn’t help noticing in the locker room. All these other guys had two parts to their package, and I just had the front one.”

Dr. Phlegming looked at Tate and shrugged. “I don’t think anyone is too surprised.”

—Edmund Snowden

Terror in the newsroom!

Recalling the horrors of the Oxford Comma Clashes of the 1990s, violence erupted in the newsroom of the Las Vegas Review-Journal when a columnist attempted to clarify the noun “so-and-sos” as a plural by adding an extraneous apostrophe.

On Thursday, March 20, the deadline pressure was mounting, and Michael J. Puney was about to put his column, “No News is Good News” to bed. He said he’d been staring at the phrase, “Those dirty so-and-sos” for more than 20 minutes, looking in the AP Stylebook for any clue as to how make the final word look right. He finally turned to the Merriam-Webster online dictionary, which also gave conflicting advice, “plural so–and–sos or so–and–so’s. In less than a second’s time, he hit the apostrophe key, following by Ctrl S.

“The Stylebook was about as clear as mud,” he said, nursing the cut under his eye where copy editor Shawn O’Masky had pegged him with a pica pole.

“The guy’s a moron,” O’Masky said, “Look. ’DO NOT USE: For plurals of numerals or multiple-letter combinations.’ It’s right here under the “Apostrophe” category in the “Punctuation” section. It could not be any clearer; DO NOT, DO NOT, DO NOT. Even the dictionary shows it as secondary, less preferred choice. It totally looks like a possessive there.”

Puney has threatened a lawsuit against both his employer and co-worker. “This kind of hostile work environment must not be allowed,” he said. “Just last week, that asshole came unglued on an intern who insisted on putting double spaces after periods. These things are not set in stone.”

Puney was referring to the obsolete practice of putting two spaces after periods in paragraphs that began in the era of manual typewriters, when two spaces were added because typewriters used monospaced fonts. In other words, an ’m’ took up the same space as an ’i’ so two spaces were a more visually pleasing way of ending a sentence.

Staffers say that after the pica pole flew, newsroom exploded with the warring factions brandishing hardcopy dictionaries and other even less sanctioned or even misleading tools like The MLA Style Manual and Guide to Scholarly Publishing and Grammar Girl’s Quick and Dirty Tips for Better Writing.

“It was like a bloodbath in there,” O’Masky said. “I don’t know what comes over these people. I’ve always felt that you should write it the way that looks right to you, and let the copy desk fix things. If it comes over perfect, why do they have jobs anyway?”

—John Q. Public

Pro-drought forces fault Brown

Drought supporters in California attacked Gov. Jerry Brown for “using tax dollars to interfere with nature.”

On Jan. 17, California Gov. Jerry Brown declared a state of emergency and released a 20-point drought plan. He has assigned various tasks, including contingency plans, to eight state agencies to mitigate the impact of the drought.

The pro-drought bloc, which is heavily libertarian, accused “a paternalistic government” of trying to reduce the effects of the drought.

“Drought is part of the rich pageantry of the West, and this intervention is depriving our children of their enjoyment of nature,” said U.S. Rep. Darrell Issa. “This is one more reason for overburdened and over-regulated Californians to move to Nevada. They’ve got a drought, but you don’t see their state government meddling.”

In Reno, local activists agreed, saying it’s wrong not to let nature take its course, which is, well, the natural order of things. “You don’t let science run amok improving quality of life,” said one. “It’s just like organic foods.”

—Dimness Mired


The Nevada Gun Rights Coalition is offering to trade toy guns to children who turn in school books.

In neighborhoods where guns are rare but deprived children can name the characters in Little Women, the coalition has set up “Second Amendment Exchanges” at community centers in an effort to encourage less contemplation and more action.

“There is so much indoor activity these days,” said Washoe District Attorney Richard Gammick, a member of the coalition. “We want to support more outdoor play.”

—Dentist Myass

Gibbons draft fails

Nevada Democrats suffered a setback in their 2014 strategy when former governor Jim Gibbons said he was staying out of elective politics this year.

No specific office was mentioned by party spokespeople in their effort to lure Gibbons into running.

“Any office will do,” said U.S. Sen. Harry Reid. “We aren’t picky. Just having him on the ballot would be a godsend. The Gibbons years were the golden age of Democratic politics.”

Democrats had assembled a campaign fund in six figures to aid a comeback attempt by Gibbons. “But it was the same old story,” said Democratic state chair Roberta Lange. “We can never compete with Republican money. As much as we were able to raise for Gov. Gibbons’ campaign, the Republicans were able to raise more to keep him out.”

—Sy Bryan

Amazing discovery!

A team of archeologists have from the University of Nevada, Reno, have discovered evidence that present-day Sparks Marina was the site of an epic battle between men and orcs.

Ancient weapons alongside human and orcish skeletons were found at the site.

“These weren’t just ordinary orcs either,” said Dr. Mary Brandybuck, the leader of the archeological expedition. “These were fearsome fighting Uruk-hai. They were taller, smarter and more ferocious than normal orcs. We’ve discovered traces of pigment on their helms that suggests they bore the mark of the white hand of Saruman.”

Prior to being filled with water, the Sparks Marina was known as Helm’s Pit. Brandybuck says that new evidence suggests that Helm’s Pit was previously known as Helm’s Deep, a stronghold of the Rohan, an ancient tribe of horsemen.

According to Dr. Brandybuck, some time around 3019 of the Third Age of the Sun, the era commonly known as Middle Earth of the Tolkienite epoch, Helm’s Deep was the site of a historically significant battle between the wizard Saruman’s Uruk-hai forces and group of men led by King Theoden of the Rohan. The outcome of the battle looked bleak for the humans until the wizard Gandalf arrived with reinforcements at first light on the third day.

Brandybuck says there were also some elves and perhaps even a dwarf or two fighting alongside the men. However, she said, contrary to some accounts of the battle, no elves used a shield to skateboard down a flight of stairs while shooting arrows.

“That would be ridiculous,” said Dr. Brandybuck.

—Brad Aghast the Brown


In last week’s feature story, “Bigfoot seen eating sandwich in downtown Reno,” we misidentified Batboy as Bigfoot. Additionally, he was eating a burrito, not a sandwich. And our correspondent misidentified Gerlach as downtown Reno.

In last week’s horoscopes, our astrologist, Rube Breathy, incorrectly predicted that all Scorpios would die this week. We apologize for any confusion or preemptive suicides this might have caused.

In last week’s Green column, our environmental correspondent, Parsley Sage Lazy, incorrectly identified coyote dung as an edible plant.