2002-08-15 / Arts & Entertainment

C’est La Vie

©2002 King
By Don Flood

Features Synd., Inc.

Monster Fish

Causing Hysteria

You have probably heard about the strange, monstrous fish that was released in a Maryland pond.

Dubbed the Frankenfish, the snakehead, a native of China, has already become the stuff of legend, its strength and ferociousness spreading hysteria throughout newsrooms up and down the East Coast.

Fortunately for you, dear readers, there are men such as myself, calm, professional journalists whose only concern is writing the plain, unvarnished truth — no matter how many awards it might bring.

In the following I examine the most common rumors surrounding the story labeled by CNN as, "Snakeheads: A Nation Under Siege."

Snakeheads are such voracious feeders they will literally eat every other fish in a pond and then march out and apply to law school — Only partly true. Some snakeheads will apply to law schools even before they eat every other fish in the pond.

Snakeheads can run down and eat an adult racehorse — Though there have been reports of horses eaten by snakeheads, they have yet to be confirmed, so please be cautious about spreading these unsubstantiated rumors, which can lead to unnecessary panic.

As far as confirmed reports, the most noteworthy item eaten by a single snakehead was a Volvo station wagon, owned by an accountant who worked for Arthur Andersen.

However, since the accountant was in the car at the time, police decided not to press charges.

Snakeheads have eaten Baltimore — Grossly exaggerated. At the very most, 20 or so city blocks have been devoured by snakeheads. Much of the city remains unharmed.

In a statement meant to encourage tourists to continue visiting the city, the Baltimore mayor said, "This is a wonderful time to visit our fair city and don’t believe those ... AAAAHHHHHH!"

Later attempts to find the mayor so he could elaborate on his statement were unsuccessful, as were attempts to find City Hall itself.

The city’s Tourism Director downplayed reports that a snakehead the size of Godzilla on steroids had eaten City Hall.

"Absolutely untrue," he said. "City Hall has been moved to an undisclosed location for renovation."

A snakehead has eaten Vice President Dick Cheney — Sadly, this story is true. The White House, in an attempt to hide this story from the public, has put the word out that Cheney is in hiding because of scandals surrounding his business dealings.

"He’s really embarrassed and humiliated, as he should be," said press secretary Ari Fleischer.

In fact, the vice president is believed to have been swallowed whole by a snakehead the week of June 16, as he emerged from a midnight swim in the Potomac.

Fortunately for the administration, a number of Cheney’s key aides were also swallowed, allowing the vice president to maintain his usual schedule — with the exception of his weekly luncheons with the president, which have been canceled on orders of the Secret Service.

Despite a publicly stated policy of refusing to negotiate with snakeheads, administration officials have set up preliminary talks with the Frankenfish in an attempt to secure the release of Cheney and his associates. Check CNN for updates.

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