DID SOMEBODY DIE?

Tuesday, June 14, 11:39 PM PST

Resourceful Americans Create New Ways to Honor Dead Republicans

by Brent the Johnson,
NA!P NewsWire

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Crisis nearly struck the United States when, amidst all the processions, pomp and pageantry of Reagan's death, organizers for Reagan's Farewell Tour 2004 realized they had used up the seemingly endless number of ways to publicly display their love and respect for the former president's corpse.

Apparently, all the time-honored means of mourning the passing of American myths -- such as flying flags at half-mast, U.S. Air Force fly-bys, and lone bagpipers playing Amazing Grace -- weren't enough for a nation hell bent on wasting a prodigious amount of time and energy on Reagan's funeral.

"I guess it was during one of the 21-gun salutes -- the 32nd one, in fact -- that it became clear we were regurgitating the same old stuff," said Lance Mansur, 28, a rock-concert promoter who served as tour manager for Reagan's body.

"I could hear people saying all kinds of shit. Like, 'Old and busted' and 'Hello, summer TV season.' That one really hurt. So I put the call out for some fresh ideas."

(Mansur wouldn't comment on rumors that the major networks and cable outlets had applied pressure on him to make the weeklong televised event "more spectacular.")

Among the first respondents to that call was a U.S. Marine drill team, which came up with an innovative 21-marine pyramid.

"R-E-A-G-A-N!" all the marines chanted throughout the three-minute demonstration of people clambering over each other to form a pile of sweaty, nearly naked bodies. It ended with a rousing call of "What does that spell? REAGAN! Ooo-RAH!"

"It was, like, tough and all," remarked a clearly winded Lt. Allen Bowler, the unit's commanding officer, after the performance. "I mean, we knew that we could do it. But doing it tastefully was going to be a challenge. Safe to say, I think we crammed the concept of taste down your throats! OooRAH!"

As Reagan lay in state in the Capitol Rotunda in Washington, D.C., Mansur was able to organize several monster-truck rallies at FedEx Field, home of the Washington Redskins.

"I was so freakin' excited when Smitty asked me to participate," said Scooter McDeevers, who repainted and rechristened his truck from "SkullKrusher" to "The Gipper." His truck was one of several that dominated the junkyard wrecks dubbed with such names as "Food Stamps" and "Voodoo Economics."

"Dude, it totally rocked me," bellowed Dale Mason of Fort Ashby, W. Va., who attended several of the rallies.

"All these beautiful machines, like 'Reagan Rules' and 'The Jelly Bellyacher,' were totally wasting wrecks called 'Evil Empire' and 'Education.' My favorite was when 'We Begin Bombing in Five Minutes' destroyed 'Iran-Contra Scandal.'"

Mason added: "OooRAH!"

Joe Rogan, however, raised the bar for "new form" tributes with a very special episode of "Fear Factor."

"You ready for your final challenge? Yeah, you are!" Rogan said enthusiastically during the last minutes the show. He then opened Reagan's casket and instructed all challengers to climb in. "The last one to emerge wins $50,000!"

Sue Ellen Baker of Wichita, Kan. eventually won the prize after three hours.

"I'm just so happy to honor President Reagan like that," she said, tears running down her face. "There were a few times when I wanted to scream, 'OH MY GOD I CAN'T BELIEVE WHAT A HORRIBLE, HORRIBLE HUMAN BEING I AM!' Sometimes, I just wanted to give up like a pansy Democrat."

"But then I thunk to myself, 'Did Ronnie give in to his self-loathing as he sold arms to Iran to fund Contras who routinely raped and murdered Americans?'" Baker continued. "Obviously not, and I drew strength from that. OOOOOO-RAH!"

Americans were visibly moved by the outpouring of creative mourning that ordinary people came up with to honor the formerly alive 93-year-old man, as reflected by Fear Factor's record-high Nielsen ratings.

"Man, these new ways to mark the passing of important people totally rules," said Elizabeth Ashland-Jones, a stay-at-home mother from Anaheim, Calif. "I can't wait for the next great American Republican to pass on -- who knows what this great nation of ours will do mark it?"

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