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Man asks eight-minute long statement at talk

As local media personality Riley White turned her Friday talk at the University of City to the Q&A section, she wasn’t expecting an attendee to stand up and give his own speech.

But Terry Fisher, student, did just that. Obviously inspired by White’s tale of five years reporting on the local arts scene, he rose from his seat, approached the microphone thoughtfully placed in the middle row, and began speaking.

“I just want to first say that I deeply admire your accomplishments,” the tragedy began, “your support for the community has been so meaningful. I should say that… as a… bit of an actor myself, I have a more personal appreciation for what you do.”

Onlookers describe having felt apprehensive at this point, always fearing any purported question that starts with “I just want to first say.” Fisher reportedly gave general praise to White for approximately two minutes, before finally moving along to a sentence beginning with “so what I wanted to ask about is actually two questions really.”

Another red flag, said Katie Schroeder, veteran question critic.

“First, the praise isn’t impressing anybody—not least the speaker, who just wants you to get to your question so she can answer it and give the next person in line a chance,” she said.

“But then two minutes in you drop the double-question bomb? Shit bro, everyone else has questions too. Ask one, rejoin the line. You can’t just monopolize everyone’s time.”

Fisher’s first question itself began not with what elementary school teachers describe as “asking words” but a lengthy preamble. He began by outlining in some detail several of his own life experiences that he seemingly deemed relevant to whatever he was eventually going to get around to asking.

“When I was seven,” Fisher was reported to have said, “—don’t worry, you’ll see how this all makes sense soon, but I had this blanket that I used to take everywhere, even to my acting classes…”

Bizarrely, not thirty seconds later, Fisher had somehow changed the topic of his preamble to vague accusations that White’s coverage of his cousin’s play had been “a bit unfair really,” before rollercoasting through a discussion of larger biases within the media around such varied topics as fluouride in municipal water supplies, following Toronto Mayor Rob Ford into donair restaurants too much, and reporters chumming around with oil company executives like they want a fucking swimming pool of crude or something.

Fisher’s voice had taken on a nervous, delirious tone at this point, and while White was keeping up her smile like a trooper, some members of the audience had begun shifting around in their seats uncomfortably. It was as if they were aware that this embarrassment would not end until someone stepped in, but weren’t quite sure if enough other people were yet sufficiently annoyed that they could get away with being the one to yell “cut the mic!”

By minute five, with no question in sight, Fisher was deep within a discussion regarding the existence of God—apparently thanks to a throwaway remark White made about God blessing you all. Her smile had curled a little closer to a frown, though she kept her polite nod rate somewhere in the once per five second range.

“White was holding up the best you can in this sort of situation,” Schroeder assessed. “Keeping calm and appearing as thought you’re engaged is the safest approach. The questioner had clearly lost control of himself—you could see it in his face, he had no power to stop what was happening.

“We’ve found out that what drives behaviour like this is the urge some people feel to make it very clear to entire rooms of people that no matter how interesting the featured speaker had been, they are still incredibly, incredibly intelligent themselves. What they essentially want to do is validate their misplaced feelings of superiority by claiming a good few minutes of somebody else’s talk so that they can parasitically feel as important as they imagine the speaker does by stealing the audience the speaker’s accomplishments have earned.”

The next person in line was at this point leaning awkwardly on the seat nearby, and one or two audience members had quietly left. There were pockets of murmurs here and there and one person was beginning to cough loudly. Some began to suspect that the organizers didn’t actually know how to cut the mic because university staff had set the sound system up for them and left earlier.

“Let me rephrase all that,” Fisher said at six minutes and 15 seconds, coaxing out a round of audible groans.

“I didn’t know what to do,” White said afterward. “Here’s this guy, who I assume wanted to ask me a question, and had the forty five minutes I was talking to formulate it, and he just kept going.

“I was paralyzed—I mean I don’t want to have to tell the guy to shut up. I don’t think the question of whether it’s ruder for someone to take forever to ask a question or to tell that person to knock it off is something many people have given much thought to.”

At seven minutes and 30 seconds, the room was reaching a breaking point. Fisher, rather than simply rephrasing minutes of incoherent, unimportant and irrelevant thoughts, had moved forward to talk about his expertise in the field of 18th Century piracy having played a bit of Assassins’ Creed 4: Black Flag. Visibly sweating and fidgeting, it appeared as though the 20-year-old was feeling the aching pressure of the room to get around to his question.

“The hardest thing to endure was seeing that he was self-aware of the social faux-pas he was committing,” said Schroeder.

“I almost started to feel sorry for him, but it was mostly because the only thing you can actually do with people like this is to euthanize them—it’s really sad when they know, you know?

“You gotta shoot them right between the eyes,” she added confidently, “it’s the only way to make sure.”

Eventually, at eight minutes and three seconds, Fisher ended a sentence and paused. He looked around, saw the room staring at him, and hastily brought the ordeal to an end.

“What do you think about that?” he asked.

Fisher was unable to speak to us due to euthanization, but Schroeder warns that while eight minutes was bad, she’s seen these episodes reach a horrifying height of a solid ten.

“That was a bad one,” she ached, “I swear he must have talked about his personal research into something he was calling cosmic neuro-hermanautics for seven whole minutes before he said anything at all related to what the speaker had said. And then he just sort of rambled to a close and wandered away from the microphone.”

Schroeder was tasked with taking both that guy and Fisher out herself—something she never takes lightly, she assured us while cleaning the student’s blood from her revolver.

And as for White, she had to undergo psychiatric treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder, but she’s now allowed to go back to work covering local bands performing at dirty bars for pennies.

2014 set to be highest-numbered year on record

The calendar rolls over to the next year tonight and experts agree: it’s going to the highest-number yet.

Amid conflicting claims of which 13 things that happened in this year were the best, billions will celebrate its death by ceremonially overdrinking—some waking up without clothing.

“You know, I’m 54 now, and I’ve been watching the changing of the years for, oh, must be about 54 years at this point,” said distinguished Time Sage and nudist Gregory Gregson, “and I’m pretty darn sure I never saw a 2014 before.”

“In fact, I think I’d have to say this is the highest-numbered year I seen since 2013 came along.”

Gregson predicts that if this trend continues, we can expect to see a 2015 follow 2014, and perhaps even a 2016 after that, advising that even though this new year will have the largest number yet observed, we should be prepared to settle in for a string of incrementally larger year numbers as time goes on at this point.

The higher number is important because with it comes change. For one, marketers in regions where dates are written as a rollercoaster of unit length will be able to take advantage of the lucrative 12/13/14 date for movies involving counting things. And regardless of country, the superstitious among us will only have to deal with 12 dates with 13 in them, as opposed to all of them.

As well, years from now, children born in this new year will affix a “14” to the end of their brainternet handles—one entire integer higher than children born in 2013.

And while everyone is agreed that this is the highest-numbered year, some members of strange foreign cultures claim numbers even higher than 2014. A buddhist with a hard-to-spell name said that her people observed 2014 a half-millenium ago and that it was really nothing to write-home about in terms of having a year with a high number.

“I was a snake back then. It was badass being a snake, but the year number itself was so-so,” she recalled.

“As far as I’m concerned, it’s 2556 and we plan to take it one higher when this one ends, so you all should get it together and catch up already. My grandma shits 2014.”

“She’s an eagle or something now. I don’t see her much.”

But even then, Jewish person Mordechai Goldstein claims that the Hebrew calendar will have a year with a number more than double the Buddhists’, claiming the highest-numbered year there is, being that it started with the beginning of the world, time, existence, and everything else almost 6,000 years ago.

“Oy vey what’s with all the schmaltz?” he stereotypically asked in a thick accent because there is innate if lazy humour when people talk different to how you do.

“You schmucks are only up to 2014? Well it’s probably because you’re always putzing around, not calling your mother, not coming to your brothers’ bar mitzvahs or those events where we cut off parts of babies’ penises,” he said, straining his stereotype to the point of absurdity and the border of offensiveness.

Gregson rejects claims such as these, saying that those calendars aren’t as good as ours because he doesn’t know anybody who actually follows them. He could just go ahead and make up his own calendar too, he says, and start it 20,000 years ago just so he could have a really, really high number, but would it mean anything, he asks? Besides, he’d have to be a Level 12 Time Sage to have abilities such as those, and he is merely a Level 10.

“What it comes down to is what are you gonna trust, the calendar you lived with all your life, or something someone of another culture says they use?”

But one final claimant might have everybody beat. Speaking through a possessed physicist, the universe itself is wading into the debate.

“I don’t know what you Earthlings are talking about,” xe hiccuped, “but at my count, we’re at 13 billion and something.”

“I lost count a while ago,” xe admitted, “it was around the time I got just, like, so fucking wasted and passed out for a million or so years. I come to, and all of a sudden some of my favourite stars have been torn apart by black holes, a couple of my nicer galaxies have collided, and I got you dickholes running all over my twenty-eigth nut, arguing about which god’s real or whose calendar is better or whatever.”

The Universe then went onto complain about more or less the entire history of the human race, claiming that we have been standing in the way of xeir plans for the Solar System, and generally getting everything that we try catastrophically wrong.

“Jesus, give it a rest. Look, I have the highest number. Now go back to going extinct. Your global warming’s getting in the way of me turning the Earth into a big ol’ snowball and throwing it at that jerk across the branes, Marty. He’s a right cunt.”


Fifteen dead in wake of Supreme Court prostitution ruling

The Supreme Court of Canada yesterday ruled unconstitutional a cutesy clusterfuck of laws around prostitution that, despite the act itself of exchanging money for sex being legal, make it essentially illegal unless you take your lawyer along. Although they gave Parliament one year to come up with something that makes sense before all bets are off, last night, one underground bawdy house began celebrations early—resulting in tragedy as fifteen people reportedly fucked their brains literally out.

“They said ‘tonight’s on the house'” recalls sole survivor Tim Dickly. “We were just all so happy that the Supreme Court ruled on the side of greater protection and freedom for consenting adults being able to exchange services freely. When I left the party, everyone was… just fine.”

Authorities attended the scene after a 911 call from Dickly—the poor man having woken up to a hellscape of corpses, brains, and $20 bills. He’d turned in early that night, citing “work in the morning,” and retired to the Toronto facility’s “solo room.” He was not prepared for what the morning had in store.

“It looked like their brains had just leaked out of their orifices. The nose, the ears, even leaking around the eye sockets. If there was a hole, there was brain coming out of it. I don’t claim to know how, exactly, it happened but it was all there plain as day. Their brains were outside of their bodies, and there was only one activity going on when I went to bed: fuckin’.”

In a press release, police claim to have ruled out foul play, saying that sometimes, consenting adults doing things that are a little risky just results in bad consequences, but that it was those people’s right to take those risks and there was nothing law enforcement should be doing to prevent them.

A Conservative Member of Parliament who is on some committee vaguely related to this general topic expressed his dissatisfaction with the ruling on his Facebook wall.

“I may be a small-town MP from ‘Berta,” it reads, “but I think I know a thing or two more about prostitution than nine Supreme Court Justices. And by darn I were right. You just got to look at what happened in Toronto.”

The note went on to explain his concern over the unanimous ruling that the government’s approach to punishing the advertising of prostitutes’ services is grossly disproportionate and violates their Charter rights by asserting that every sex trade worker is trapped in the profession and we oughta be doing something to get them out before more people join those who have been described as “The Toronto Fifteen.”

“You all know I’m a small-gubment kinda guy. But you all also know that only applies when we’re not talking about what people can do with their own bodies—especially women. I will not stand for this, and I will hope that my sternly worded note on Facebook will serve to make it clear to voters that while I ultimately won’t contribute to any lasting success at keeping prostitutes out of your communities, I will probably contribute to clogging up the courts for a few more years by helping enact a horsefuck of a law the equivalent of the shrill cry of a mortally wounded weasel as it clings desperately to life for a few more precious seconds even while the darkness closes in around it.”

A scientist explained that the risk of fucking your brains out is normally low when you’re having a legitimate sexual relationship—such as intimate sex with a long term partner or a one night stand with a lady or gentleman met at a local popular drinking establishment. But the proximity of cash to genitals produces a state in the brain that, while even then is normally stable, can sometimes be “thrown outta wack.”

“What happened in Toronto is the bawdy house made the sex free for a night, paying the prostitutes with its own money,” the scientist undeserving of his name in print says. “Your average rate per hour for sex at this place is $75 or… I think, around 12,500 Dogecoins right about now. So they reduced the price to zero while the actual value of the product remained the same, so the johns figured they’d better have cram as much sex during the evening as they could so as to maximize the bargain—much as how people will murder for cheap TVs during Black Friday sales.”

The scientist, who says his work has been published in the Ontario Review of Scientific Academic Science—a prestigious journal with a long history going back to last Tuesday—explained how this economic situation resulted in a conflict between the sides of the brain dealing with currency and sex literally frying and liquifying the brains of the coiting employees and customers. Apparently, he says, the upside of the brain gets signals from the genitals that sex is taking place, while the opposing downside of the brain is trying desperately to ascertain the correct amount of currency it thinks that the pleasure is worth.

Because the upside and downside of the brain are polar opposites—the upside being hedonistic and the downside being miserly—such an extreme clash of feelings can “short circuit” the organ.

Police have determined that the $20 bills were thrown around by one client in particular, who in the throes of celebration declared that he would donate his vast fortune withdrawn from the ATM near the Denny’s earlier that night to all in attendance and began emptying his pockets. This only amplifed the upside/downside clash, convincing the downside that all of a sudden paying for sex was actually earning them money, sending the fucking into absolute total maximum overdrive.

“It’s only going to get worse,” the definitely published scientist cautioned. “Allow these places to operate openly in society, and they’re going to fall into the same consumerist traps everything else does. Sex being free for a night is not going to happen often, but when we’re talking half price sales, two-for-ones, stamp cards where after the tenth transaction you get one freebie—even gift certificates—I can tell you this will happen again.”

Police have urged the public to remain calm during these confusing times of potentially allowing sex workers to work in safer environments, adding that because they were all the fancy new plasticy $20 bills, the currency itself can simply be wiped clean of brain matter and that the public can be assured that the cash will be back in circulation within days without anyone knowing the difference.