Column Date 2007-09-05

What happened on my summer vacation

Summer is officially over.

No more worrying about whether your suntan lotion has the right SPF.

No more dragging that 800-page, five-pound book everybody said is a “must read” to the sweltering beach, day after day.

No more getting irritated by those droning airplanes pulling banners reading “Joe’s Swordfish Shack– All U Can Eat $12.99” back and forth for hours.

It’s time to re-enter the real world.

So I re-entered the real world...and found that nothing had changed.

Well, almost nothing.

The President was still rushing around, of course, trying to claim that his Iraq war is a success. (As my mother used to say, “He’s running around like a chicken without a head.”)

Yet another Righteous Republican was dragged down by yet another sex scandal.

The Yankees, for all their money and talent, are still in second place.

Congress still can’t agree on much of anything. (Which is understandably difficult when one party in the Senate is always threatening to use a filibuster if they don’t get their way.)

People are still not sure exactly who is running for President and who is not. (How many of the 19 current candidates can you name?)

But something important died while I was away: The Weekly World News is gone.

The last issue of this extraordinary newspaper is now on the newsstands (or more accurately, at the checkout counter in your local supermarket), featuring the sort of articles that have made it required reading for years.

The Weekly World News, in fact, has given us some of the finest comedy writing in America.

For instance, here are a couple of current headlines:

“Honeymoon couple attacked by goldfish”

“Killer Babies are on the loose! What to watch out for.”

”Did David Stop Goliath With A Spitball?”

See what I mean?

I even remember the first headline that caught my eye and made me a dedicated fan:

“Midget Astronaut Trains In Clothes Dryer”

Which was followed by “Choc-aholic Mom Gives birth to Sugar-Coated Baby!”

Life is going to be a lot more boring without The Weekly World News.

Reading it was like peeking into an alternative universe.

But, then again, when you pick up one of our “serious” newspapers and read “Bush Will Veto Bill Giving Health Coverage to Children,” you wonder which universe is the better one to live in.


Important Note from the Tannen Weekly: I am now hard at work on my first book – a comedy-mystery novel. Since there are only so many words in my word processor, and so few hours in my day, The Tannen Weekly will be e-mailed to you every other week for a while.

Bear with me. As a dedicated subscriber, you’ll be the first to when the book is finished.

©2007 Peter Tannen