Our Street Gangs Are Probably Using Bad Language

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Vol 34 Issue 05

Paramount Pictures Proudly Shelves Latest Film

HOLLYWOOD, CA–Paramount Pictures is rolling out the red carpet to shelve its latest comedy, The Munsters. "Join us in welcoming this poorly realized film to the Paramount studio archives," read a press release for the film, not coming to theaters any time soon. "Based upon the mid-'60s TV show, this $45 million bad film was intended to capitalize upon the nostalgic appeal of the series, but became bogged down in rewrites and production delays, only to end up as an unwatchable career-ender." The press release also described the casting of actor Larry Hagman in the role of Grandpa Munster as "a stupid, stupid move."

Monopoly Player Insists On Being Wheelbarrow

BAKERSFIELD, CA–The start of a Monopoly contest was stalled for more than 30 minutes Monday, when player Andrew Shermer insisted on being the wheelbarrow. "I must be the wheelbarrow in any game which I am to play," Shermer, 10, told reporters in a press conference at his home in Bakersfield. "Jamie [Dugan] and Chris [Cambria] are being ding-dongs about this." While Dugan, 8, cited Shermer's use of the wheelbarrow in last week's game as the basis for his claim over the coveted game piece, Cambria claimed "rightful dominion" over the piece based upon the fact that playing was his idea. The dispute was eventually resolved by Shermer's mother, Linda Shermer, who seized the wheelbarrow piece and forced the disgruntled players to choose among the thimble, dog, racecar, top hat and shoe. The iron could not be found.

Russia Renamed 'Batshitzania'

MOSCOW, BATSHITZANIA–With political turmoil and economic chaos threatening to tear the nation apart, Russia's parliament voted unanimously Monday to rename the crumbling former superpower "Batshitzania." "We felt a new name was in order to suit our new identity," said acting Batshitzanian prime minister Viktor Chernomyrdin, standing atop a burning Kremlin. "Citizens are frantically trying to get rid of their worthless rubles, our nuclear weapons are sitting unguarded in abandoned silos, and the mentally unstable Boris Yeltsin, who is scheduled to undergo octuple-bypass surgery next week, refuses to step down. Basically, everything's going bat-shit zany over here." Other names considered for the collapsing nation include Kabloomia, Dystopskia and Hell.

Kenneth Starr Orders LBJ Exhumed For Investigation Of Possible Sexual Impropriety

WASHINGTON, DC–Vowing to "restore morality, integrity and accountability to the office of the presidency," Special Prosecutor Kenneth Starr ordered the exhumation of President Lyndon Johnson's corpse Tuesday in connection with possible sexual misconduct during his tenure in the White House. "Since the late President Johnson has not been forthcoming with the truth about his relationship with Miss Glass, I am left with no choice but to subpoena him posthumously," said Starr, who has accused Johnson of conducting a longtime affair with Alice Glass, the girlfriend of Texas newspaper publisher Charles Marsh. Johnson may be called to testify as early as next Monday, when exhumed president Warren Harding is expected to complete his deposition regarding an alleged 15-year extramarital affair with Carrie Phillips and subsequent attempts to bribe the Phillips family to keep the relationship a secret. Among other presidents whose corpses Starr has ordered dug up for questioning regarding sexual misconduct: John Kennedy, Franklin Roosevelt, Dwight Eisenhower, Grover Cleveland, Martin Van Buren, Andrew Jackson and Thomas Jefferson.

Star Wars 4 Is On The Way!

Item! Hold onto your hats, everyone, because this is the Big One. From one of my better sources, who must obviously remain nameless, I've learned that there is going to be another Star Wars movie! Plot details about Star Wars 4 are extremely sketchy, but from what I understand, Luke and Laura have to find a magic potion that was hidden by Boba Fett, Darth Vader's son-in-law, in order to save their home planet from space drug dealers. It's good to know that Steven Spielberg still has the magic touch. Stay tuned for more info. And may The Force be with you and your loved ones!

The New Eunuch Is Not Working Out

It was my birth-day recently, and the customary deluge of gifts flooded the Estate. I was wheeled into my private amusement annex so that I could watch the unwrapping of my presents. As usual, I was given needless rubbish and picayune baubles that serve me no purpose. I received what must have been my 659th mechanical nightingale from whomever is the Emperor of Siam now-a-days, when what I truly desired was a new shawl and a visit from the Grim Reaper. I directed Standish to cast the nightingale into the furnace and bury the rest of the unopened loot in the court-yard.
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Our Street Gangs Are Probably Using Bad Language

While recently wandering the rotting underbelly of my favorite local urban wasteland at 3 a.m., I was accosted by a roughneck gang of thugs who demanded my wallet. With a grandfatherly sense of duty, I handed it over to them; then they clonked me over the noggin and ran off.

Six hours later, after brushing off most of the garbage that came from the dumpster in which they had thrown me, I was overcome with a shock of rage. My face turned crimson with anger and revulsion. These thugs hadn't said please! Not only that, their grammar in general was atrocious!

Here are just a few snippets of our evening's conversation as I recall it:

"Hey, old man. You think you feelin' lucky tonight?"

"Gimme your money, or I'll knife you dead."

"I gots the cash, now smack the geezer and run!"

My face reddens with pique at the thought of the colossal amount of wasted tax dollars that this shameless display of bad grammar represents.

When I was a young man, my gang always chose a designated grammarian before we hit the streets. We looted, harassed and terrorized neighborhoods with impeccable speech. If someone was caught using "ain't" or a double negative during our looting and vandalizing, it was the designated grammarian's duty to point this out to the offender. First, he'd recite the proper usage from Strunk and White's The Elements Of Style, then he'd whap the ignoramus in the ribs with a pipe.

Today, I see hardly any of this vigilance.

After my ordeal, I decided to see if things are as bad with other alternative youth recreational organizations. I made it a point to follow around several of the most vicious, murderous, drug-shoving gangs to observe their grammar. At first, I felt rather nostalgic for the moonshine-running and fun-loving mob activity of my youth. I look back with the greatest fondness to my days as a thug with my trusty Unabridged Oxford Dictionary at my side. But these images were quickly dashed by my further observation of the sad state of today's gang language.

I initially chose a group of personable young fellows who called themselves The 99th Street Death Machine. At first, their youthful antics charmed me, particularly a little drive-by shooting organized by their leader, a surly 18-year-old who went by the name of Attitude.

But my charm soon turned to rock-bottom disgust as I heard their language: double negatives everywhere, a gut-wrenching penchant for the use of slang over the proper King's English. In one heated exchange alone, overheard during a shootout over a heroin deal gone bad, I heard 16 slang words, 10 swear words, five dangling participles, and a rambling subjunctive clause that just begged for placement in a more appropriate syntax.

I went on to observe 26 more gangs, all with the same damning results. If today's teachers can't teach proper grammatical usage to our young people during the few classes they attend before dropping out, I say let's save ourselves some tax dollars and close down the schools altogether. No wonder our nation is lagging behind Japan: Our schools are failing our gangs!

Also, a good vocabulary helps young people get things done more efficiently. If the gang members who mugged me had expressed their desires properly, they would have secured my wallet far more quickly, giving them extra time for other important criminal activities.

I have another proposal that could kill two birds with one stone: Use some of the trillions of dollars that are wasted supporting shiftless welfare freeloaders by putting them to work teaching proper English to today's incoherent street gangs. There's a whole generation of felonious drug dealers out there looking to us to help them learn before they offend more delicate sensibilities.

It's something to think about the next time you're running for your life at 3 a.m. through a park, pursued by a carload of frisky teenagers shouting threats in incomprehensible slang. Wouldn't it be a relief to understand what they are shouting at you, for once?

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