April fools 2010
A peek at SN&R’s five-year green mission
by Jackson Griffith
When SN&R relocated from its longtime Midtown mortuary digs to new headquarters on Del Paso Boulevard, the move provided a chance for the paper to demonstrate its commitment to the green ethos.
It’s one thing to editorialize about concern for the environment or write about people who are making an effort to “go green,” and quite another to live it. Keeping that ideal in mind, SN&R has moved toward setting an example to the Sacramento region on how independent businesses can serve as models of sustainable operation.
Sustainability, of course, begins with growing things, and SN&R’s new rooftop garden, while it may not grow fruits or vegetables, theoretically will supply herbs, succulents and fungi with enough high-quality cannabinols and psychoactive alkaloids to fuel the editorial and design departments entirely, with plenty left over for advertising and business personnel.
No more random “What were they smoking?” questions from critical readers need be asked. The answer is: only the best.
House gardener Don Button put it most succinctly. “If you want to think green, it helps to live and breathe it. Literally,” he said.
Gardens require water to make plants grow, and SN&R has devised an innovative water-recycling program that allows its new Woodlake subdivision neighbors to participate. The paper’s distribution drivers showed up after midnight at the new offices during a recent full moon, with instructions to install a hose-based water redistribution system that would connect area homes with the rooftop gardens.
“Barring a few vocal canines, which we treated with herbal quieting agents, the installation proceeded without incident,” SN&R’s Michael Billingsley said.
Another green program at SN&R is the new opinion methane gonculator, or OMG. Particularly virulent letters to the editor or recorded phone messages are fed into the device, which employs advanced gonculation—or methane extraction—technologies developed by German scientists during World War II. The caustic qualities of the opinions are extracted and gonculated; the resulting methane gas is compressed, using energy from the process to power the building.
While some SN&R staffers insist that opinions from the conservative end of the spectrum are richer in methane content, District of Columbia-based Fox News Channel consultant Michael Steele disagreed. “Liberal vs. conservative opinion is roughly analogous to bovine vs. equine excrement,” he noted. SN&R’s Kel Munger, however, defended the enhanced value of conservative opinion. “The right-wing letters are so much richer in methane content,” she stated flatly.
SN&R CEO Jeff vonKaenel has asked all the paper’s staffers to donate any unwanted natural-fiber clothing to the building. The discards clothes will be shredded and then molded into insulation.
“We have some real ‘clotheshorses’ here, especially in the editorial department,” vonKaenel said, obliquely referring to the excessive salaries traditionally enjoyed by working journalists. “Some of them go through mountains of new clothes each season, so I figured they might want to donate some old fashions.”
And finally, SN&R itself is moving toward what’s perhaps the greenest form of publishing, which is to eliminate paper entirely. And not only that, but the paper’s new “Web 3.0” strategy—wherein the Internet and tweetosphere will be bypassed for a more straightforward method of distribution—will involve beaming the newsweekly’s content directly into the brainpans of readers in the Sacramento region, using technologies developed by the National Security Agency under the direction of Dr. Franz Anton Mesmer IV, the Obama administration’s behavior modification czar.
According to SN&R’s vonKaenel, advertising will be part of that mix. “It’s important that our advertisers know that their dollars spent will result in effective, nay, inescapable impressions,” he said.
An Inconvenient Ruth
by Auntie Ruth
The new Arco Arena will be the greenest building in the NBA, and Auntie Ruth was there, a fly on the wall, when the green lightning bolt hit Joe Maloof upside the head. Zaaaap.
Joe and his brother Gavin Maloof, along with NBA commissioner David Stern, were touring SN&R’s beloved new green building on Del Paso Boulevard, marveling at its many eco-friendly features: the use of recycled blue denim in the roof’s insulation, the solar tubes, the countertops of recycled green beer and blue Skyy Vodka bottles, the motion detectors that turn the lights on and off as people come and go, the recycled sinks and tiles on the floor.
Suddenly, just outside the bathrooms, Joe Maloof fell to his knees, spread his arms, looked up at the blue-jean-insulated roof and said: “Yes! Yes! Yes, it is so! Let Arco Arena be the greenest building in the NBA.” And Gavin said, “But our colors are purple and black.”
“Ours will be the NBA franchise that walks softest on the Earth. Even … softer … than … Mark … fucking … Cuban.”
“Where’s Stern?” asked Joe. “He’s in the bathroom,” Gavin said. “I see it now. You know, one of the most important factors in lowering the Kings’ carbon footprint?” asked Joe, arms still spread like Moses. “Smaller players?” asked Gavin. “Our players must live closer to Arco Arena and ride their bikes to work. Yes! Yes! Yes!” “That’s a long ride from Granite Bay to downtown,” said Gavin. “Then let the players have a summer house in Granite Bay and a winter house in Midtown.”
“I don’t think Westphal can afford it,” said Gavin.
“Yes! Yes! Yes!” thundered Joe. “And we will insulate the roof of Arco Arena with, with, with—”
“Old pants?” asked Gavin. “Old jerseys!” And Joe’s arms begin to shake. “This puts a whole new spin on hanging a jersey from the rafters,” said Gavin. “We’re going to hang all the jerseys from the rafters!” said Joe. “Oh my God!” said David Stern, coming out of the bathroom, his eyes wet with tears. “These waterless toilets are fantastic.”
Yer Auntie was there the day green was born in the NBA. It is the power of example that will change the world, or at least Joe Maloof, and an April amen on that one, boy, howdy.
The darnedest things come out of the mouths of babes
by Jacob Cho-Martinez-Johnson-Magrachyov
This week, News & Review president and CEO Jeff vonKaenel turns his column over to a fifth-grader, so we may experience a child’s wisdom.
My name is Jacob Cho-Martinez-Johnson-Magrachyov. My fifth-grade friends ask me, “What’s with the name, dude?” Well, both my parents had hyphenated names, so I got four. I even have a middle name, Woodstock, but that is another story. I worry my new stepparents will want to get into the act and add their names to the pile, but so far, I’m good.
But this column is not about my name, it is about a bigger problem, and that is old people. You know, those people 40 years old and above. I asked Jeff vonKaenel who usually writes this column if I could take over for a week. The vonKaenel guy, who is really, really old, said sure. He claims his column is inspired by a love to save the planet for my generation, and that he was honored that a fifth-grader even read his column.
Sure, we appreciate how the old ones have concern for us. But it’s a little late. They destroy the economy, start absurd wars and wipe out the planet, to name just a few screw-ups. And don’t get me started about removing soft drinks from school. Please.
So we believe enough is enough. After making such a mess, we think it is time for old people to take a timeout. We believe voting should start at 10 years old, and those over the age of 40 should no longer be able to vote. After all, voting is a responsibility, and the old ones just have not been responsible.
Some people say that 10-year-olds do not have the experience or judgment to vote. But come on. Certainly the average fifth-grader can figure this stuff out.
For instance, when it comes to foreign policy, every fifth-grader knows you cannot go punch someone because you think they may have a rock and they may throw it at you. When it comes to economy, I do not know a single fifth-grader that believes you can borrow money from your friends every day and never pay them back. And when it comes to the environment, we all know if you never clean up your crap, it will soon get very unpleasant.
I say let those who will be stuck with this messed-up world work on the solution. It seems only fair after all the timeouts we’ve gotten for such crimes as “using our outside voice inside.” The old ones, who have wiped out the economy and destroyed the planet, have earned a timeout from voting.
Autos into plowshares
by Cassie Oh
As has previously been pointed out in SN&R, Jesus Christ was an environmentalist. That’s where the Christians for a Sustainable Sacramento come in. Taking their cues from Isaiah 2:4, members of the congregation are combing through neighborhoods for donations, particularly automobiles. Once enough cars have been collected in the neighborhood, they are beaten into plowshares, the asphalt is ripped up and the streets are transformed into rows of farm fields, in which residents can spread forth their seed and multiply. Residents who live between 22nd and 29th streets and C and H streets have until April 31 to exchange their vehicles, or find alternative parking sites, before the roads are bulldozed and replaced with dirt in May. Get your plow on.