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Charles Koch Orders Sniper To Fire Warning Shot Next To Marco Rubio On Debate Stage

GREENVILLE, SC—In response to the presidential candidate’s unsatisfactory answer to a question about the economic effects of environmental regulations, Koch Industries CEO Charles Koch reportedly ordered a sniper positioned in the rafters of the Greenville Peace Center to fire a warning shot near Marco Rubio’s podium during Saturday’s Republican debate.

What’s At Stake In New Hampshire

With the New Hampshire primary election Tuesday poised to impact the course of the 2016 presidential race, The Onion examines what’s at stake for the candidates

Monocle-Wearing Oil Baron’s Cigarette Holder Splinters In Clenched Teeth After Hearing Bernie Sanders’ Environmental Platform

GREENWICH, CT—Leaving him visibly seething as he sat in his tufted leather wingback chair in his study, monocle-wearing oil baron Frederick Porter Harriman’s ivory-inlaid cigarette holder reportedly splintered between his clenched teeth upon him hearing presidential candidate Bernie Sanders outline his environmental platform during Thursday night’s Democratic debate.

Biggest Campaign Gaffes So Far

The road to the 2016 election has seen its fair share of blunders, miscalculations, and poorly worded statements, all captured by an eager news media that’s always on the lookout for political missteps. Here are some of the biggest campaign gaffes of this election cycle so far:

How The Iowa Caucuses Work

The votes cast in the Iowa caucuses on Monday night mark the official beginning of the 2016 election season, but the specifics of the state’s selection process can be confusing to voters who don’t live there. Here, The Onion answers the most common questions about how the Iowa caucuses work:

Iowan Comforts Sobbing Jeb Bush At Town Hall

DES MOINES, IA—Slowly approaching the distraught, trembling presidential candidate before embracing him in a gentle hug, 42-year-old single mother Holly Sullivan comforted a sobbing Jeb Bush during a town hall forum, sources confirmed Friday.

Dazed Marco Rubio Wakes Up In Koch Compound To Find Cold Metal Device Installed Behind Ear

‘Hello Marco, We Will Now Begin The Program,’ Says Soothing Voice

UNKNOWN LOCATION—The brightly lit, stark-white room gradually coming into focus as he regained consciousness, GOP presidential candidate Marco Rubio reportedly awoke in the Koch brothers’ secret compound Thursday and reached suddenly to his throbbing head to discover a cold metal device implanted behind his left ear.

Hillary Clinton Relaxing Before Debate With Few Hours Of Debate Practice

GOFFSTOWN, NH—Describing it as a much-needed escape from the hype and pressure surrounding the event, aides from Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign confirmed that the candidate has been taking it easy and kicking back ahead of Saturday’s Democratic debate with a few hours of intensive debate practice.

Terrified Jeb Bush Beginning To Fade From Visible Spectrum

LAS VEGAS—His voice slowing during his response to a question about immigration as he struggled to comprehend what was happening to him, a visibly terrified Jeb Bush reportedly began to vanish from the visible spectrum while on stage at Tuesday night’s Republican debate.

Koch Brothers Get Each Other Same Election For Christmas

WICHITA, KS—Chuckling and shaking their heads as they described their annual family gift exchange to reporters, Koch Industries executives Charles and David Koch confirmed Wednesday they had unwittingly gotten each other the same election for Christmas this year.

The Pros And Cons Of Political Correctness

A key issue currently driving a wedge between political parties in the U.S. is the question of so-called political correctness, or the avoidance of language and actions that could be construed as exclusive, oppressive, or marginalizing of minority groups. Here are the pros and cons of political correctness in our national discourse:

Rand Paul Escorted Off Stage After Falling Below 2.5% In Middle Of Debate

MILWAUKEE—Interrupted midway through answering a question about how he would reform the nation’s tax code, Republican presidential candidate Rand Paul was reportedly escorted off stage roughly an hour into Tuesday’s GOP primary debate after falling below the minimum 2.5 percent polling threshold necessary for participating in the forum.

Fact-Checking Ben Carson’s Claims

GOP presidential frontrunner Ben Carson is currently under fire for claims he’s made about his past in books and interviews, many of which journalists have alleged are fabricated or skewed in the candidate’s favor. The Onion breaks down what’s truth and what’s fiction.

Republicans’ Demands For Upcoming Debates

Following last week’s contentious debate in Colorado, Republican presidential candidates are formulating demands for future debates in the effort to reduce perceived media bias and foster a more productive, policy-focused discussion. Here are the GOP’s demands for upcoming debates

Top Issues For Voters In The 2016 Election

With the presidential race well underway and the pool of candidates narrowing, Americans will soon have to choose their next leader based on how well they speak to the issues. Here are the top issues that matter for voters in the 2016 election

Winners And Losers Of Last Night’s Debate

The top 10 leading GOP presidential candidates met in Boulder, CO for their third debate last night, hosted by CNBC and featuring a number of contentious moments concerning alleged liberal media bias, frontrunners’ contradictory statements, and more. The Onion breaks down who won and who lost the debate

Ben Carson Tormented By Periodic Rational Thoughts

SAN ANTONIO—Calling the disturbing incidents a persistent source of anguish, GOP presidential candidate Ben Carson told reporters at a Monday campaign stop that he has been tormented by periodic rational thoughts for the past several years.

How Democrats Are Preparing For Their First Debate

The first Democratic presidential debate will be held Tuesday, and the candidates are expected to battle it out over issues as wide-ranging as gun control, climate change, and wealth inequality in America. Here’s how the candidates are preparing for the debate

Group Of Christie Campaign Deserters Found In Forest

SHAMONG, NJ—Huddling together around fires of burning yard signs while sipping small rations of soup from mugs adorned with the phrase “Telling It Like It Is,” a ragged encampment of advisers, pollsters, and volunteers who deserted Chris Christie’s presidential campaign was reportedly found living deep in a New Jersey forest Friday, authorities confirmed.

Sight Of 400 War Elephants On Horizon Marks Hillary Clinton’s Arrival In Swing State

WHEELING, OH—Feeling the earth shake beneath them as they watched the procession climb over the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains toward their village, sources along the Ohio border confirmed Thursday that the sight of 400 war elephants marching on the horizon marked Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton’s arrival to the critical swing state.

Unemployed Single Mother In Rubio Speech Told Candidate About Her Problems In Confidence

CEDAR FALLS, IA—Describing her shock and embarrassment upon learning that her personal struggles were shared with an entire campaign rally audience, 37-year-old Allison Kilpatrick, an unemployed single mother that Republican presidential hopeful Marco Rubio mentioned in a recent stump speech, informed reporters Thursday that she told the candidate about her problems in confidence.

Obama Scrambling Around White House Kitchen Before State Dinner

WASHINGTON—Darting back and forth from refrigerator to sink to prep table while hurriedly preparing 350 hand-carved radish rosettes, a visibly agitated President Obama reported Friday that everything must be absolutely perfect for tonight’s state dinner in honor of Chinese president Xi Jinping.

Voters Look On In Horror As 3 New Republican Candidates Appear In Place Of Scott Walker

MADISON, WI—Overcome by a profound feeling of dread and helplessness as the GOP field multiplied before their eyes, voters at Scott Walker’s press conference yesterday, in which the Wisconsin governor announced he was exiting the presidential race, reportedly looked on in horror as three new Republican contenders appeared on stage in place of the former candidate.

Top Snake Handler Leaves Sinking Huckabee Campaign

LITTLE ROCK, AR—Dealing yet another blow to the former Arkansas governor’s presidential hopes, Dalton Hobbs, one of Mike Huckabee’s top snake handlers, has decided to leave the sinking campaign, sources reported Thursday.

Aides Rush On Stage To Rotate Scott Walker Back To Direction Of Audience

SIMI VALLEY, CA—Upon noticing that the Wisconsin governor had become disoriented during one of the moderator’s questions and begun delivering his response while facing the set’s backdrop, several of his aides rushed on stage during Wednesday’s GOP primary debate to rotate Scott Walker back in the direction of the audience.
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Supportive Gay Friend To Counsel American People On Ways Of Romance

WASHINGTON, DC–Reeling from countless relationships gone awry, blind dates from hell, and one-night stands that were about one night too long, the American people received help Monday in the form of tart-tongued but shrewdly perceptive gay friend Garrett Blaine.

Sassy, supportive gay man Garrett Blaine vows to be there for the American people.

At a White House Rose Garden ceremony, President Bush named Blaine, 30, U.S. Romance Counselor-General. Charged with dispensing no-nonsense relationship advice to more than 250 million Americans, as well as providing citizens with a shoulder to cry on, Blaine will summon every ounce of his energetic, outgoing personality and gift for outrageous one-liners.

"All Americans–not just stylish urbanites–should have access to a sassy, supportive gay sidekick with whom they can share their romantic trials and tribulations," Bush said. "It is as basic a right as a good education or complete medical coverage."

Blaine, who when not attending to wounded veterans of the dating wars works at the Racy Stamen Floral Boutique & Oxygen Bar in Los Angeles, attempted to explain his knack for helping heterosexuals with their love woes.

"A lot of people ask me, how does a gay man know so much about solving straight people's romantic problems?" Blaine said. "Honey, if I knew the answer to that, I'd be God. And I know I'm not God, because I'm not black or female! Well, not black and only about a quarter female."

Continued Blaine: "I can always tell when something's wrong with the U.S. populace when they come into my shop. Their posture's drooping, or they avert their eyes, or they tell me they love my new turquoise polka-dotted shoes. Oh, boy! That's when I know something's wrong. So I roll up my sleeves, brew up a big pot of java, haul the cheesecake out of the fridge, and say, 'Okay, American people, this is Garrett you're talking to here. What's eating you? And don't say 'a Brazilian cabana boy,' because I won't believe you."

In the years prior to his appointment, Blaine tirelessly supported nearly 8,000 Americans as they braved the roller-coaster ride that is modern romance.

"If it weren't for Garrett, I'd probably be with yet another guy who's more committed to his health-club membership than to me," said Alyssa Ennis, an insurance-claims adjuster from Saginaw, MI. "Instead, he told me to take a chance on that nerdy-but-nice tech-support guy at work, because, as Garrett put it, 'He may wear a Star Trek necktie, but he's better than those Klingons you've been dating!'"

Continued Ennis: "Neil and I have been together for more than a year, and we just got engaged! Thanks, Garrett!"

Another American who has benefited from Blaine's help is Santa Fe, NM, bookstore employee Andrea Adkins. In 1996, Adkins was 100 pounds overweight and involved with a man who constantly derided her appearance.

"I was very unhappy with this guy," Adkins said, "but I felt that, looking the way I did, beggars can't be choosers."

Outraged by Adkins' predicament, Blaine closed his shop and moved in with her. "I took one look at Andrea," Blaine said, "and I immediately thought, now there's a gal who needs a flamboyant, frank-talking sidekick."

Over the course of the next year, Blaine coached, coaxed, and cajoled Adkins down to a svelte 110 pounds. He also encouraged her to pursue the open position of children's-section manager at her bookstore and helped her gain enough self-respect to dump her no-good boyfriend once and for all.

Blaine offers support and encouragement to La Crosse, WI, brewery worker Bob Sharpe, whose wife recently cheated on him.

"Garrett saved my life," Adkins said. "There has been a 180-degree turnaround in the way I look at things. Instead of being the beggar, now I'm making them beg. As Garrett says, 'You go, girl!'"

Blaine's clientele is not entirely female. Brad Cochrane of Shreveport, LA, contacted Garrett in November after a second attempt to reconcile with his girlfriend failed.

"When I picked up Garrett at the airport, the first thing he did was put his hands on his hips, cluck his tongue, and say, 'Brad, old buddy, do we ever have our work cut out for us,'" Cochrane said. "I had no idea what he was talking about. But then he gave me the news."

Blaine, Cochrane recalled, bluntly informed him that his number-one roadblock to reconciling with his girlfriend was his slovenly wardrobe.

"We went straight to the mall, where I tried on clothes as ZZ Top's 'Sharp Dressed Man' blasted over the P.A.," Cochrane said. "Garrett chose enough Armani suits and Hugo Boss casual wear to outfit an army. I told him I didn't have enough money for all that stuff, but Garrett just said, 'Baby, you just need to hop on board a certain train called the American Express.'"

After receiving a crash course in etiquette from Blaine, Cochrane unveiled his new look to his girlfriend at a fancy French restaurant. Sure enough, she agreed to give him another chance.

"I'd still be sitting home alone in my pizza-sauce stained sweatpants if not for Garrett," Cochrane said. "He's a real straight shooter."

Informed of Cochrane's use of the adjective "straight" in describing him, Blaine emitted a mock shriek.

Though Blaine is renowned for his skills as a pal and confidante, little is known about his own love life.

"Garrett has been out of the closet for years, but I can't remember him ever having a steady boyfriend or even a date," Adkins said. "In fact, I've never even seen him kiss a man. Isn't that strange? It's almost like he's asexual."

"At first, I was kind of uneasy about Garrett's homosexuality," Cochrane said. "But after I found out he probably never actually does it with a man, he became safe and non-threatening."

Blaine will have his work cut out for him Thursday, his first official day in his new position: Karyn Robles of Grand Junction, CO, has not yet told her boyfriend that she hates his new moustache. Joe Barents of Huntington, NY, is still waiting in vain for a phone call from a lingerie model with whom he had a blind date two weeks ago. And Meredith Crouch of Durham, NC, was recently asked to dinner by her boss, with whom there has long been a simmering mutual attraction, but she feels it might jeopardize her career. Should she or shouldn't she?

"Hold the fort, buckaroos," Blaine said. "It's Garrett to the rescue!"

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