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with Leslie Generic, 3/17/00

Leslie: Here now the news, I'm Leslie Generic.
The National Center for Genealogical Statistics reports that a computer virus has infected it's record keeping system and has temporarily caused every registered human to be classified as "Irish." The Center's director is Sonia O'Cohen.

(sfx: cameras)

Sonia: (new york) This is an aberration. We apologize for it. It's not gonna last. I say twenty four hours, max. We've got our best people working on it.

Reporters: Sonia! Over here. Sonia?

Sonia: Let me caution you on your reporting here … while the records have been temporarily changed … at no time has anyone actually become Irish. This is all a technical problem and (lilt) it's a wee bit of a problem at that. (back to original) If I were you, I wouldn't worry.

(sfx: reporter hubub and cameras fade out)

Leslie: O'Cohen says the reported spike in corned beef sales is typical for this time of year, and the widespread shortages are likely the result of poor planning and hoarding.

The successful cloning of a pig, announced earlier this week by the Scottish company that cloned "Dolly" the sheep, has led to widespread speculation that several famous pigs will submit to the procedure. Tom Bristles is publisher of "Pig Week" magazine.

Bristles: Miss Piggy has been mentioned. "Fiddler" pig of the famous brother pigs has been floated as a candidate although critics say "Builder" pig, being the smart one of the three, is the most sensible choice. And there's considerable sentimental interest in cloning Porky. He's quite old and in ill health, and researchers point out that if we cloned him, we might learn if stuttering is genetic or a learned behavior.

Leslie: Tom Bristles of "Pig Week" magazine.

In a sharp exchange of insults, the president and the Negative Retort Association have accused each other of "accepting a certain number of sharp replies and "disdainful comments" for the purpose of 'furthering their political agendas.'" Samuel Testy, president of the NRA, says the administration is twisting his comments.

Testy: What I said was … he doesn't really want to eliminate disdainful comments because then, what would he say about me? Huh? Face the truth. We don't need new nice laws, we just need to enforce what's already on the book! I say … if you want to be nice … then put down the barbs, the jabs, the veiled threats and the double edged swords, and BE NICE!

Leslie: Samuel Testy of the Negative Retort Association. In response, White House spokesman Pete Poindexter said the Association was famous for promoting sarcasm no matter how damaging it proved to be, and he added that the NRA should do more to "end irony as we know it."

A new survey on Men's attitudes towards health care indicates that men are much less likely than women to seek treatment when they are ill. Survey director Kent Clark of Shakey Surveys told a press conference that part of the problem may be the male sports ethic that says one must "play with pain."

Kent: (sniffly, feverish) The data show that men feel their worth is diminished if they are not working … and they will … (sneeze) … excuse me. They will force themselves to perform and refuse (he has a chill) treatment even when it's clear they … they should … they … (sneeze) … they … (aside) Get your hands off me!

Beth: (slightly off mic, softly) Kent, you should be in bed.

Kent: Not until I'm done! (to mic) Even when it's clear that they're sick. (cough)

Leslie: Kent Clark of Shakey Surveys. Immediately after the press conference he was hospitalized with a severe case of self deception.

The combination of a mixed week on Wall Street and rising gas prices has led some observers to conclude that good economic times are just about over. Recent comments by Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan suggesting higher interest rates have also triggered pessimism, but the Conventional Wisdom Administration has not changed it's overall view of the economy. CWA spokesperson Marjorie Doomsayer.

Marjorie: (perky) You say things are going downhill … frankly I look around and … I don't see it. I just don't! Consumer spending was up in February. Spring is coming. In Washington, the cherry blossoms are out. I'm excited about the Oscars. What's to worry about?

Leslie: Marjorie Doomsayer of the Conventional Wisdom Administration. She was interviewed on the tv program "Surreality Today."
Consumer spending WAS up in February. Tyler Byar says he contributed to the trend.

(sfx: street)

Tyler: I bought a car. It seemed like a good time. I bought golf clubs for this summer. I bought clothes, beer. Lots of beer. That's already gone. Computer stuff. That'll be obsolete by the end of the year. Audio stuff. Furniture. Gas. Ha! Food. I almost forgot the food.
And I bought myself a lot of long term debt. I'll still have that after everything else is gone. Fun!

Leslie: February consumer Tyler Byar.
And that's the news … I'm Leslie Generic.

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