Barcelona, Spain. “The philosophers have only interpreted the world, in various ways. The point, however, is to change it”, thought Carlos Marcos as he walked up the stairs to an important labor union meeting. He and his colleagues were about to negotiate a new set of conditions for home office workers throughout the region.
“One must be aware that the reward for labor, and quantity of labor, are quite disparate things”, he informed his colleagues. “We must compensate the home office workers for their efforts in a way that does not rely solely on a fluctuating economical market. In order to keep employees happy I suggest the companies adapt to their needs: increased nap time, free laundry service at indiscriminate hours, a housekeeper with a master’s degree in reuniting misplaced socks, and frozen pizza delivery.”
The other members of the union frowned at Carlos, after which he proceeded. “Frozen pizza, just so we make sure nobody gets too cocky and figures they don’t need the union anymore.” An air of relaxation spread across the room.
“Also, compañeros, let’s not forget that the production of too many useful things results in too many useless people. Thus the productivity of these workers needs to decrease a little, in order for their busy work not to result in making them redundant”, Carlos added.
Seeing that Carlos would not let any of his colleagues speak out during the meeting, his wife Jenny pulled him aside:
“Carlos, what’s going on?!”
“Jenny, I really hate wearing pants. I want to work from home and be able not to wear pants, okay? But I need at least one frozen pizza. We all do!”
Moscow. Russia. It’s been one wild World Cup so far! With four of the strongest teams out of the picture, the future of this competition is beyond unpredictable. Messi and Ronaldo have left the game on the same day, shortly after (rightfully) overdosing on Schadenfreude as the German team lost to South Korea on Wednesday, June 27.
Online Sports betting sites have made a fortune so far and are about to draw in a couple of more benefits from supporters’ confusion. With Brazil, France and Croatia currently having the best chance to win this World Cup a new team has emerged on the favorites’ list: Romania.
Rising from its ashes, a team that intially did not even qualify to play in the World Cup, Romania was thrown back in for entertainment value. “As everything seems to be upside down, it is most likely that Romania wins this competition. It’s clearly the era of the underdog”, sports commentator Norman Knowles informs. “People love the unforseen and by the looks of it, Romania might just pick up where it left off in 1994.”
Contacted by our reporters for further comments, the team’s coach said that at the moment they are unreachable and dedicating all their time to training. By the looks of it, they are very prone to cramps after long years of domestic chores such as money laundering and writing appreciation letters to incracerated club owners.
Rise up! It’s time for some action, boys, lest the Russians….you know!
Barking, United Kingdom.“She was capable of naming me Kitty. Go figure!”, muttered the elegant red ball of fur as she entered the psychoanalysts’ office. She didn’t seem in a hurry to sit down and started to look around, sniff the furniture, and cast a mistrustful look towards the couch. After a minute she seemed to be ready to approach the stiff leather stool at the center of the room with slow-paced steps.
“I have no idea what I am doing here, Melissa”, she addressed the psychoanalyst, “and I have no intention of cooperating. However, if you feel inclined to bribe me into opening up with a freshly opened Sheba can, by all means proceed.” She paused for a second. “In case you’re wondering, I approve of the roasted turkey entrée.
You know, Melissa, I know we, cats, have been used by humans for a long time as affection providers. I mean…no offense, but haven’t they heard of dogs? And of the fact that I would totally eat my “owner”, if she were to give up the ghost within my reach one day. I have a suspicion she is rather bland, through. And by that, I don’t mean her personality.
Truth be told, I do fare well on my own. I eat, sleep, drink perfectly fine and prefer it when someone doesn’t put a collar on me, at least not one saying “My lovely baby, Kitty – heart emoji”. When did they start engraving emojis? Goodness gracious, are we doomed or what? I have to say though, I do allow regular backrubs as long as I am in the mood and I guess sometimes it’s alright for humans to comb my silky smooth hair. How is it not enough that I get to bless them with my mere existence? People…”, Kitty concluded, rolling her eyes in a manner that betrayed an in depth knowledge of the gesture.
“Well, I guess it’s not too bad to be here after all,” the ginger troublemaker remarked as she was lifting her tail in approval, drawing just about enough validation from Melissa’s exquisite listening skills to keep her talking. “Between you and me, I was really starting to need some space, you know? To get out in the world and do something different. Get to meet other people and give them an opportunity to know me. It’s not something many people can boast of.”
“So, Melissa, how are you feeling today? Are you ready to tell me about your childhood?”
Barcelona, Spain. Maria Fernandez, 39, formerly known as indifferent to football, seemed to display a very detached attitude towards the much debated sport and team preferences when randomly approached on the street by our reporter.
She was happy to answer a couple of questions for our ongoing survey. More details below.
“Maria, what do you think about the importance of football in our society? How important is this for you personally?”
“Honestly, it seems to me that some people get overheated about it. After all, this is a game people should enjoy, not something to get mad or violent over. Sure, we all have our preferences and root for one team or another, but at the end of the day, it’s a sport, it’s not like Trump is ruling your country. I like it. I can’t say I’ve always been into it, but it’s not too bad. It grows on you.”
“Do you have a favorite team, Maria? Someone you’d really like to see winning?”
“Truth be told, I’m very laid back. I’m down with any team winning the FIFA world championship as long as it’s the Argentinian selection.”
“Ohhh, I’m not sure that makes sense, Maria. So you do have a preference?”
“I’m relaxed and mostly just want to see a good game. May the best win, as long as the best is the Argentinian team.”
“Maria, I’m not sure you’ve been following the matches they’ve had so far.”
“Sure I have, and yes, it may be that the Croatian team was somewhat superior, but what kind of supporter abandons their team when they’ve run in a bit of a bad luck?”
“Right, Maria, what has been in your opinion the most memorable world cup?”
“Well, certainly not the last one!”
“Oookay, you mean the one where Argenti -“
“Not another word, Fernando or it’s your life”, Maria said as she threatened our reporter with a metal straw she probably uses to drink her mate tea with.
At this point, Fernando, fearing for his life but dedicated to his journalistic duty, asked Maria the last question of the survey.
“Is there any other team you sympathize with?”
“What do you think, Fernando? Not if I would like to avoid being single again. Or…actually, tell me, what do you think about the Belgian selection?”
Barcelona, Spain. Ready to wake 150 employees up from their comfortable professional slumber, a local IT company decided to lay them off for their own benefit, no less.
“Everything was working well, too well I would say. Then we realized we needed to give people new opportunities for a development that was directly proportional to the reorganization of our pockets”, CEO John Gready informed the press on Friday afternoon.
“While taking a fun, peaceful summer away from the people, we are pushing them beyond their comfort-zone yet again. We are challenging their perspective on job security and offer them a chance to wake up to the realities of capitalism. We think of it more as a gift than anything else”, Mr. Gready continued.
Upon interviewing an employee who prefers to maintain his anonimity, we found out the following: “Not many of us were blindsided or taken by surprise. We sort of saw this coming, actually. With our inefficiency, poor work ethics, low technical skills, and not to mention our funny accent, the management simply had no option but to move the entire department to India. I mean, we probably should have suggested this to them a long time ago.”
Others were less understanding and whispered to our reporter: “Man, this sucks, I mean some of us have kids and other age related illnesses. It freaking hurts. Although, not as much as what happened yesterday to Argentina. This is just regular pain compared to that, Caballero Pelotudooo.”
Cornella de Llobregat, Spain. A series of mysterious deaths in the suburbs of the Catalan capital have called the attention of local authorities. Around February several baristas at a local coffee shop started falling dead at work, with numbers increasing throughout the following months. Mortified by these events the police started investigating.
Pressured by public opinion and the fact that there was no decent coffee to be bought anywhere, the authorities carried out an investigation with surprising results. After close observation the unlikely culprit was exposed.
The police noticed that the root cause of the issue was actually doing a decent job of properly pushing the plastic lid all the way down on the coffee cups. “While careless baristas would go about their day undisturbed, the ones who would actually mind closing the coffee lid properly to avoid IV and III degree burns to the customers’ skin dropped dead as soon as they completed the respectful act”, a spokesperson for the local catalan police, Des Cafeinado, reported.
It does seem like there is a clear and straightforward answer to the eternal question: “Would it actually kill baristas to push the motherflipping lid all the way down on your cup to avoid burns, damaged clothes and a growth spurt in one’s swearword vocabulary?”
The unequivocal answer is yes.
Brussels, Belgium. Two years after the General Data Protection Regulation entered into force on the 24th of May 2016, the regulation is ready to become directly applicable in all member states of the European Union and the European Economic Area.
The regulation does not require national governments to pass any enabling legislation and is directly binding and applicable, so that no EU citizen ever need worry about finding out uncomfortable information about whose political campaign their leaked information really ends up supporting, for example.
Of course, not only political ends are served by forwarding personal data to third parties. Economical and social use can be made of it too. “There are quite a few areas your private information can help improve and boost, even. The main thing is to avoid getting too upset about it. It is not advisable to stir unnecessary conflict, thus we have created a law to protect our citizens against ever finding out who their personal information is leaked to and why”, the spokesperson for the European Parliament informed on Thursday. “Trust me, it’s better this way.”
“Basically everyone will have to participate in a short training at work and be bored out of their minds for about half an hour. Most employees should already know how to handle that, though”, the CEO of Minds over Matter said.
There has been little protest from the European citizens in respect to this regulation. The population agrees that what you don’t know, can’t hurt you and just wants to click really fast through the many emails flooding their inbox so that they can skip to the fun part of checking their Facebook feed.
There will be a party, naturally, in order to celebrate the fundamental human right to ignorance. Since Mark Zuckerberg said he was sorry for what happened in the Cambridge Analytica affair, and he was supersincere, and like, supersorry, the European politicians decided to wave the white flag and invite him. Holding grudges causes cancer, they say. Plus, for sure someone will bring up the royal wedding. There’s enough small talk material there for a whole continent.
Donald Trump sends his warm regards and is sorry he won’t be able to make it. He has not reached his weekly quota of pep talking himself in the mirror and can’t miss another session.
Again, nobody thought of Kim Jong Un. What can one expect from capitalists?
Mid-Western North America. A one of a kind 30 meter long Diplodocus felt something in his eyes this morning as he was waking up from 152 million years of sleep. It was the light shining through the beautiful leaves of the tree he has been sleeping under for quite a while now.
He remembered the night before and the awesome party where he apparently had had a few fermented fruit juices too many. He also vaguely recalled making a pass at this really gorgeous Stegosaurus lady called Tiffany. According to his friends she was supposed to be into tall and strong dinosaurs such as himself. Suddenly another flashback hit him as he recalled in horror the words “You Diplodick!” falling out of her pretty mouth, followed by a loud slap. “Superoriginal, Tiffany!”, he thought to himself as he rose to his feet.
Little did he know the troubles ahead were somewhat more substantial than that stinging remark. As soon as he got up, he could see something was wrong. Many rectangle blocks of something were moving really fast and they seemed to have some weird creatures in them. There were even bigger blocks of regular shape displaying all sorts of colours and some of them reflecting light. He pinched himself to make sure he wasn’t dreaming. He wasn’t.
He looked around. There was nobody. Nobody that he knew, anyway.
“Tiffany?”, he heard himself call softly.
Suddenly he heard something move behind him and a little creature walking on two legs stepped out of the bushes. It was really small and his nose was running. The danger perceived was minimal. They carefully approached each other and the small creature held out his hand, introducing himself: “Hi, I am Mark”. The Diplodocus almost crushed Mark when he lifted his foot to introduce himself too. Well, this is embarrassing, but he sort of forgot his name. It must have been the booze or all those years passing, that messed with his memory. Mark, who was a supersmart boy and loved dinosaurs like all supersmart boys, recognized his kind and proposed to call him Dippy.”
Mark explained to Dippy that during the last millions of years during which he was asleep, the world had changed quite a bit and that his friends had vanished from Earth. Actually he could still see their bones in a museum, but probably that’s not what he hoped to hear when he asked “Where’s everybody?”. Mark also told him that we were not really 100% sure how his species got extinct and some people still don’t believe they ever existed at all. Dippy was really astounded by all of this. “All my friends are dead? You don’t believe I ever existed? Am I supposed to walk on two feet now? Oh boy…”
A deep sadness came over Dippy as he tried to take in the new world order, but Mark had a plan. In order to save Dippy from exploitation, a life at the Zoo or in the captivity of a mad scientist, Mark decided to shelter him in his secret garden. “You would be my first dinosaur friend, Dippy!” Clearly he accepted and was happy about it. Mark seemed like a really nice and small enough biped who would surely play some form of catch with him and drink a lot of fermented fruit juice when he got older and bigger. Although not as big as Dippy.
“All my friends are dead, but I just made a new one”, Dippy thought to himself as he entered the lush secret garden in a less than elegant manner. Amazing fruit and leaves were hanging everywhere and truth be told he was starting to feel hungry. “I’ve never felt so happy to be a herbivore in a biped’s garden before!”
Written by Ana-Maria Taut, based on a great idea by Anonymous.
Brilliant, Alabama. An ingenious birthay gift idea
okurr occurred to Bruce Johnston, boyfriend of 8 months to Chloe Cockburn. As her birthday was approaching and he was absolutely clueless about what to get her that would show appreciation, but would also be practical, Bruce started asking around.
“Dude, why don’t you get her some jewelry? Women are suckers for those things”, a friend warmly advised. Bruce didn’t think that was such a bad idea, but it still seemed a little too impersonal somehow. He felt he could do more.
One Sunday afternoon, as his girlfriend made him watch reruns of Sex and the City at gunpoint, Bruce saw the protagonist wear a tiny little necklace with her name on it. He instantly thought the only reason one would wear their own name on a necklace was so that others could identify them in a nuclear war scenario…although…maybe the nametag could turn out be futile in the end.
Such thoughts were crossing Bruce’s mind as he was contemplating ending his life with a spoon. Then it suddenly dawned on him! “She would love it! She’d love a necklace like that and I would always be reminded of her name when I saw her! No more confusion! Cute, practical and proof of my univided attention when it comes down to vapid and mildly exasperating television series for women.”
Bruce ran to the store and got Chloe the necklace for her upcoming brithday! She naturally loved it and is wearing it all the time.
Asked by his buddies how it all turned out, Bruce reported: “It’s the gift that keeps on giving, man. I’m never mixing up her name anymore and sometimes when she’s in an excepcionally good mood, we watch some football too.”
Vinkovci, Croatia. After waiting for what seemed an eternity, the 30th of April finally arrived. Friends and family united in the lovely Slavonian town of Vinkovci to celebrate a special union between a Croatian and Canadian citizen, whose national identity was revealed and supported by two awesome and huge flags.
The guests were received very warmly, they reportedly had a lot of fun and were deeply impressed by everyone´s kindness and hospitality. The few drops of rain that fell during late afternoon did not really bother anyone.
It is possible that a few tears were shed as the bride and groom read out their vows. Some guests stated that they were genuine, heartfelt and very touching. Much like the whole ceremony which displayed a lot of integrity and very little pointless official chatter.
There was some serious dancing going on by 10pm, an activity that was only interrupted by the delicious food that was served. The meal was so delicious in fact, that one could simply not stop eating despite the brain signaling satiety to the rest of the body with increasing desperation. As several guests observed, the only drawback was the difficulty of abusing the inviting Rakia around that much food, but then again maybe that wasn´t such a bad thing after all. The morning after damage control was basically nonexistent and unnecessary, leaving many of the guests feeling like proper adults in control of their lives.
Overall the experience was simply amazing and certainly unforgettable!
Congratulations to the beautiful bride and the handsome groom and may their love keep shining on for rest of their lives as a source of inspiration to all of us.
Muscat, Oman. Sad news of Tim Bergling´s death spread out Friday, April 20th. The EDM musician, better known by his stage name Avicii, left this world at the age of 28 nearly missing access to the 27 Club.
So far no statement has been issued by the Heavenly Administrative House as to why the young artist was denied entrance to the club where he could have partied on with the likes of Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin or Jim Morrisson. Rumor has it, that the club has a strict rock and rollers policy, one Avicii did not comply with. “As a DJ, we understand he dedicated his time to fumbling buttons, an instrument the strict heavenly elite is still unsure about in terms of general acceptance”, divine music reviewer Elle B. Bach explains.
On the bright side, the discrimination seems to have been able to buy the young artist some time, even if not too long, as a slot opened up in the 28 Lounge a few months after his 28th birthday.
The Heavenly Administrative House is expected to clarify the entrance requirements later this week and review remaining applications with care in an attempt to reduce bias and unequitable distribution of available places.
Barcelona, Spain. Late Saturday night Mariana Guzman, 43, called the emergency number reporting symptoms of nausea, dizziness and severe abdominal cramps. “I was at home, sipping on a cup of sage tea when it all started. I was in my kitchen reading some really interesting Q&As on Quora and I might have gotten sucked in a little, because in the middle of an article about how to improve my life starting with he little things, I felt a pang in my chest and my heart started beating really fast. Then I started to break an inexplicable sweat and to feel rather dizzy. I was short of breath and started to panic. That’s when I called the emergency services.”
After stabilizing the patient and running several tests, the medical staff is baffled. “We have never seen anything like this before. It´s nothing short of a medical mistery. Ms. Guzman displayed symptoms of an overdose without consuming any prohibited substance. When we scanned her brain, we could see clear signs of excessive wisdom in her limbic system as well as in her prefrontal cortex. She then told us that she had been spending a lot of time on forums such as Quora, learning about things ranging from the meaning of life to why nitrogen was called nitrogen.”
Ms. Guzman did admit to a certain level of addiction to soft-spoken, warm advice from strangers. “It´s hard not to get hooked on a platform where genuine kindness, openness and yes, wisdom, are so abundant. Yes, there is no garden without its weeds, but the weed to roses ratio is surprisingly low over here. The people who write are so knowledgeable and polite. It´s like a preview of what it all could be like if everybody was nice to each other. Plus the jokes. ”
Ms. Guzman is going to be released from the hospital on Wednesday with a recommendation for moderation and increased water intake.
Surely there is plenty of advice on how to achieve that on her beloved forum.