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How to Spot Mexicans, Muslims and Indians   Leave a comment

eli-wallach

America’s enemies have many faces: Mexicans in the U.S. illegally, Syrian refugees, Native Americans trying to block a needed pipeline and other bad hombres. And it’s the solemn duty of each and every citizen to help authorities round them up. But national security experts say that before you pick up the phone to the DHS or ICE, it’s important to recognize what each ethnic group actually looks like.

“Every one of us has to be on the lookout for suspicious individuals and be ready to report them,” explained John Chushank, of the U.S. National Security WatchGroup, a Washington think tank. “But it’s vital to be able to tell the difference between a ‘feather’ Indian and a ‘dot’ Indian. A man in a turban lurking at the local bus station may look like a terrorist, but he could be a Sikh not an Arab at all. If you overhear two men speaking Spanish outside the Home Depot, that may seem to warrant a call to immigration authorities, but they might be from Puerto Rico, which is actually part of the United States.”

The group has put out a photo array including 300 pictures of celebrities and non-celebrities to help ordinary Americans distinguish between friends and foes.

“It may be difficult at first to pick up on the subtle differences in facial features, but a patriotic and vigilant citizen must commit them to memory,” Chushank said. “You don’t want to drop a dime on some ‘funny-sounding,’ swarthy neighbors, only to endure their dirty looks at the next barbecue if all turns out to be a misunderstanding and they were just Greek.”

Here are some samples from the photo array:

lynda-carter-wonder-woman-better

MEXICAN: TV Wonder Woman Lynda Carter’s mother Juana Cordova hailed from Mexico.

eli-wallach

JEWISH: Eli Wallach played a Mexican in “The Good, the Bad and the Ugly,” but was born in Brooklyn.

teri-hatcher

SYRIAN: Teri Hatcher of “Desperate Housewives” fame.

Dave Chapelle

MUSLIM: Dave Chapelle  converted to Islam in 1998.

Stacey Dash

MEXICAN: Conservative black “Clueless”star Stacey Dash has roots below the border.

james-roday

MEXICAN: James Roday of TV’s “Psych” changed his name from Rodriguez.

jerry-seinfeld

SYRIAN: Jerry Seinfeld, on his mother’s side.

johnny-depp-tonto

AFRICAN AMERICAN: Johnny Depp may have been convincing as Tonto, but he has African ancestry.

ted-williams

MEXICAN: Baseball legend Ted Williams kept his ethnicity a secret.

snooki-3

CHILEAN: “Jersey Shore” guidette Snooki Polozzi was born in Chile and adopted by Italian-Americans.

2013 Entertainment Weekly Pre-Emmy Party - Arrivals

Bolivian: Raquel Welch, born Jo-Raquel Tejeda, had a Bolivian father.

sean-connery-wind-and-the-lion-dark-turban

SCOTTISH: Sean Connery played an Arab in “The Wind and the Lion.”

paula-abdul

SYRIAN: Paula Abdul’s dad came from now-war-torn Aleppo.

ralph-nader

ARAB: Consumer advocate Ralph Nader is the son of Lebanese immigrants.

salma-hyack-boobs

Lebanese-Mexican: Salma Hayek is double trouble.

val-kilmer

NATIVE AMERICAN: Val Kilmer has Cherokee blood and played an Indian in the movie “Thunderheart.”

shaquille-ooneal

MUSLIM: Basketball great Shaquille O’Neal rarely speaks about his religion.

vanna-white

PUERTO RICAN: Vanna White’s dad was from Puerto Rico.

prince-of-persia

SWEDISH: Despite his role in “The Prince of Persia,” Jake Gyllenhaal is not Iranian. He descends from Swedish noblity.

frank-zappa

ARAB: Music giant Frank Zappa had both Greek and Arab ancestry.

judd-hirsch-bio-pic

JEWISH: Judd Hirsch of “Taxi” fame.

shakira

ARAB: Columbian cutie Shakira’s paternal grandparents were  Lebanese.

ice-cube-3

MUSLIM: Rapper/actor Ice Cube.

pocohantas

NATIVE AMERICAN: Unlike Elizabeth Warren, Pocahontas is a bona fide Indian.

klinger

CATHOLIC: Jamie Farr, who played Sgt. Klinger on “M*A*S*H,” is a Lebanese Christian.

neil-patrick-harris

GAY: Neil Patrick Harris stars on TV’s “How I Met Your Mother.”

antonio-banderas

SPANIARD: Antonio Banderas, star of “Zorro” and “Puss in Boots,” was born in Spain.

tilda-swinton

WHITE: English actress Tilda Swinton played a Tibetan mystic in “Dr. Strange.

vince-vaugn

ARAB: Vince Vaughn’s paternal grandmother was Lebanese. He also has forebears from Italy, Holland and Germany.

wes-studi

NATIVE AMERICAN: Wes Studi, a Cherokee, has appeared in such films as “Last of the Mohicans.”

laverne-cox

TRANGSGENDER: Laverne Cox stars in “Orange is the New Black.”

aziz-ansari

INDIAN: Aziz Ansari of “Parks and Recreation” comes from a Tamil Muslim family in India.

gabrielle-anwar

INDIAN: British actress Gabrielle Anwar of “Burn Notice” has an Indian paternal grandfather.

andre-agassi

IRANIAN: Tennis great Andre Agassi’s father represented Iran in the Olympics.

ben-kingsley

INDIAN: Sir Ben Kingsley, who starred in “Gandhi,” was born Krishna Bhanji, to a British mother and Kenyan-born doctor of Indian descent.

mahershala-ali

MUSLIM: Mahershala Ali of “Luke Cage” and “Hidden Figures.”

kal-penn

INDIAN: Kal Penn stars in the “Harold and Kumar” comedies.

george-lopez

MEXICAN: Comedian George Lopez is Mexican-American.

helen-bonham-carter

SPANISH ANCESTRY: British actress Helena Bonham Carter is a descendent of a Spanish diplomat, Eduardo Propper de Callejon.

kim-kardashian

ARMENIAN: Reality star Kim Kardashian.

cindy-crawford-1

ALL-AMERICAN: Cindy Crawford is of English and Scots ancestry.

danny-thomas

ARAB: Danny Thomas, star of “Make Room for Daddy,” was a Lebanese immigrant born Amos Muzyad Yakhoob Kairouz. 

that-girl

Like her dad, 1960s TV icon Marlo Thomas is Arabic. So, when you see someone who looks just like her fleeing a raid, you might find yourself pointing her out to troopers and yelling “That girl!”

Copyright C. Michael Forsyth

Hopefully, you recognized that this article was satire. No one has put out a how-to-recognize-ethnic-groups guide, at least not since 1945. (The facts about the celebrities are accurate, though, to the best of my knowledge. If you enjoyed this article, check out C. Michael Forsyth’s collection of news satire, available on Kindle and in other eBook formatsBizarre News Cover 5.

In “Changa’s Safari” an African Sinbad Battles Sorcerers and Demons.   Leave a comment

changa-better_edited-1

By C. Michael Forsyth

Reading Changa’s Safari, a thrilling and original adventure introducing an instantly iconic hero, was one of the most satisfying literary experiences of my life. It’s as if Milton J. Davis reached into my mind, found elements I’ve always loved and expertly assembled them, the way a parent might weave all their child’s favorite things into a bedtime story.

Given that the glory of medieval Africa was its vast and sophisticated trading system, I’ve long thought an African Sinbad would make an interesting character — and here he is: the swashbuckling merchant Changa, who survives on both his cunning and brawn. I grew up on those Ray Harryhausen movies like The Seventh Voyage of Sinbad, and this book recaptures that magic and mystery, as the seafaring Changa ventures onto mysterious islands, slashes his way through jungles and battles monsters, demons and sorcerers. The novel is broken into three grand outings. In the first, he and his intrepid crew set forth on a quest for a powerful talisman called the Jade Obelisk – which, in the wrong hands can destroy the world. In another, to return an emperor to his throne, Changa journeys to the Great Wall of China.

I’m a huge fan of the Conan books and Changa’s Safari — a brilliant example of what’s been dubbed the “sword and soul” genre — has echoes of Robert Howard’s cosmology. The hero finds himself at odds with sinister, ancient entities that lurk on the edges of our world, aching to regain power.

Davis clearly invested many years researching Africa and it pays off in believability. The setting is not some fantasy land cobbled together from a couple of Internet articles and wishful thinking, but real places such as Zimbabwe and the port city of Sofala, reconstructed as they must have been, with loving attention to detail. Medieval African merchants really did do business as far away as East Asia. As a student of African history who is eager to see representations of the continent that do justice to its advanced civilizations, I’m ecstatic to find a book that satisfies that thirst.

Whether on land or sea, the action scenes are vividly described and well-choreographed. The weapons used and the military tactics all are genuine. The supporting cast including Changa’s sorceress aide and love interest Panya, help to round out the story and bring out the hero’s compassionate side. While he hungers for gold, he cares for his friends more.

I have to admit, I’m a bit envious of Davis. My own sword and soul novel The Blood of Titans contains loads of details about African societies culled from stacks of books, but I ended up borrowing from various cultures as needed to create a mythological kingdom. In retrospect, I wish I’d set the story in a specific time and place, as Davis does. My book also includes a wily warrior-merchant, the caravan master Kamau, as a secondary hero — but frankly, I kind of like Changa better!

Trouble is now I’m getting greedy. I want to read the next Changa book and the next. I want to feast my eyes on a graphic novel version and a feature film. And I can see in my head a TV show akin to Xena, Warrior Princess, following the adventures of the hero and his intrepid crew!

 

Blood of Titans cover as printed better_edited-1

The Blood of Titans is a story of love and adventure set in the golden age of Africa.

HOW TO BE A USEFUL IDIOT   Leave a comment

 

mr-bean

Mr. Bean, played by Rowan Atkinson, is Britain’s favorite half-wit.

 

By C. Michael Forsyth

You don’t have to be some university egghead who discovers the next “God particle” to make a contribution to society. You can be just as useful as an idiot.

“From time immemorial, fools have played an important role in civilization,” points out sociologist Daniel K. Roelston. “In the Middle Ages, every community had a village idiot, who took townsfolks’ minds off of concerns such as the Black Plague. Kings had court jesters who eased the burden of absolute rule. Examples of this can be found as far back as ancient Egypt and in cultures as remote from the West as the Aztecs.”

Often dressed in colorful and outlandish garb, court fools could use mockery to point out flaws in a monarch’s plan, while advisors might face beheading for such criticism. They could also give bad news to the king that no one else would dare deliver.

jester1“For instance, in 1340, when English ships destroyed the French fleet at the Battle of Sluys, admirals of the French King Phillippe VI didn’t have the nerve to tell him,” reveals Roelston. “But his jester clued in the king with the wisecrack that ‘English sailors don’t even have the guts to jump into the water like our brave French.’”

Tsar Nicholas II of Russia was advised by a series of half-wits known as “holy fools” who appeared at court from the countryside in rags. Their “nonsensical” babbling contained warnings of discontent among the peasants.

“I’m sure you remember that class clown in high school whose antics made mean and boring teachers bearable, and kept you from worrying about the big chemistry test,” Roelston says. “Now today perhaps you’re not very educated or bright, but you can play the same role. You don’t have to be a useless idiot, you can be a useful one.”

Here are five ways you can be useful to those around you, even if you’re dumb as a bag of hammers:

 

1. DISTRACT – While the boss is announcing upsetting news such as a wage freeze, get your coworkers’ attention with a sight gag or good old-fashioned pratfall.

2. DUMB DOWN – When the neighborhood brainiac tries to show off at the barbecue by talking about some highfaluting book he read, making everyone feel stupid, put Mr. College in his place. Show how little you value book smarts with a line like, “Personally, I didn’t think The Divine Comedy was funny at all. I read 40 pages and only laughed twice.”

3. DEFUSE – If your pals at work are angry because they’re losing their dental coverage, calm them down with a one-liner such as “Well I’ve always wanted to look British!”

4. DISPUTE – If a neighbor starts spreading word that the street is about to be rezoned, freaking everyone out, insist idiotically that “The Twilight Zone doesn’t really exist.”

5. DEFLECT – If a manger criticizes your division for “not giving it your all,” jump in with a funny line like, “You didn’t say that when Cathy got drunk at the Christmas party.”

“Just remember the Five D’s and you can’t go wrong,” the sociologist says.

trump-mocks-4

Russian officials have reportedly called President Donald Trump their “useful idiot.”

 

Copyright C. Michael Forsyth

If you enjoyed this article, check out C. Michael Forsyth’s collection of news satire, available on Kindle and in other eBook formatsBizarre News Cover 5.

Hired Clappers Can Help You Succeed at Job and Home!   1 comment

 

 

audience-clapping

Wildly cheering crowds are not just for Oprah’s audience anymore.

 

 

By C. Michael Forsyth

You can win that coveted promotion at the office and earn the respect of your kids at home by hiring professional clappers like the ones who applaud U.S. President Donald Trump!

“Today, there’s no surer way to get ahead on the job than having a personal cheerleading squad that applauds your good ideas, laughs at your jokes and hisses when office rivals criticize you,” declares how-to-succeed expert Cassie Stanmueller. “It’s a creative new way to win friends and influence people that’s quickly becoming essential in 2017.

“A claque that cheers enthusiastically when you offer a suggestion to the boss at a brainstorming session, or make a presentation to an important client, hammers home the perception that you’re a star in the company. Sarcastic claps for a coworker’s competing ideas — or a well-timed yawn — are worth a thousand snide remarks from you.”

Known as “claques,” such teams have mushroomed in popularity since it was revealed that the new commander in chief used paid staffers to clap at his first news conference and at an appearance before the C.I.A. Many employment agencies around the country now provide trained claquers in groups as large as 50, but experts say you don’t have to bust the family budget to have an effective squad.

“Numbers aren’t as important as enthusiasm,” explains Stanmueller. “Two or three college students working part time can do the trick.”

A claque can turn you into a winner at cocktail parties, by laughing raucously at your anecdotes, puns and off-color gags, and responding with a hearty ‘Here, here!” as you state your political opinions. And it can be just as effective in your own home.

“When your claque cheers your otherwise-boring speeches at the dinner table, it helps communicate to your children that you’re a source of wisdom and gives them new-found respect,” the expert says. “The group can also murmur in agreement when you make a good point in an argument with your spouse, or give a standing ovation when you deliver a memorable performance in the bedroom.”

When you audition clappers, make sure they can provide a variety of applause as well as laughs, such as polite chuckles, skeptical snickers and full-throated guffaws, Stanmueller advises. It’s also important to arrange a system of hand signals that tell your squad what to do.

“It’s like having an ‘applause’ sign to cue a TV studio audience,” she explains. “Practice with the group. The last thing you want is to hear boos when they’re supposed to be applauding.”

 

trump-press-conference-3

Savvy up-and-coming employees are taking page from President Trump’s book.

 

Copyright C. Michael Forsyth

If you enjoyed this article, check out C. Michael Forsyth’s collection of news satire, available on Kindle and in other eBook formatsBizarre News Cover 5.

Can YOU Pass the Refugee “Christianity Test”?   Leave a comment

jesus-preaching

By C. Michael Forsyth

President Donald Trump has banned refugees from terrorism-plagued Muslim countries from entering the U.S., but many leaders feel that an exception should be made for Christians.

“Most of the women and children fleeing Russian bombs, beheading by ISIS fanatics or being taken as sex slaves are Muslim, but some are actually Christian,” explained a government insider. “We’d like to let the Christians in, as Jesus Himself would want us to do, but the problem is it would be very easy for a Muslim to slip in by claiming to be a follower of Our Lord.”

Some have floated the idea of a test that could weed out fakes from real Christians. Here is one version. Answers and scoring are below. Just for fun, take it and check your score to find out if you could get by government screeners.

1) Name three of Christ’s disciples:

A) Peter, Paul and Mary
B) Adam, Joseph and Hoss
C) Matthew, Mark and John
D) John, Luke and Han

2) When people were building the Tower of Babel, God foiled the project by

A) Blinding them
B) Causing them to speak different languages
C) Removing a critical stone at the bottom
D) Sending a great hailstorm

3) The phrase written over Christ’s head on the cross was_____.

A) Nice Guys Finish Last
B) Jesus of Nazareth King of the Jews
C) Jesus Christ Superstar
D) Do Not Mess With the Romans

4) Who ordered the crucifixion of Jesus?

A) Julius Caesar
B) Augustus Caesar
C) Caligula
D) Pontius Pilate

5) The Bible states that Jonah spent three days inside a huge____.

A) Turtle
B) Brothel
C) Whale
D) Fish

6) The final time Judas saw Jesus, he ____.

A) Kissed Him
B) Kneed Him in the groin
C) Knee-capped Him
D) Shook His hand

7) “The Immaculate Conception” refers to the birth of what biblical figure?

A) Moses
B) Jesus
C) St. Mary
D) John the Baptist

8) Jesus said, “Let he who is without sin___________.”

A) Get stoned
B) Become Pope
C) In free to my next revival meeting
D) Cast the first stone

9) Love thy neighbor as ___________.

A) Long as he is also Christian
B) You love yourself
C) Long as he loves you back
D) Long as this does not put you in danger

10) According to the Bible, the human race began when______.

A) God created Adam and Eve
B) God created Adam and Steve
C) Homo Sapiens evolved from a more primitive species
D) Zeus created Adam and Eve

11) In the Book of Genesis, the rainbow appears as a symbol of______.

A) Equal rights for the people of Sodom.
B) The diverse races of mankind
C) God’s pledge never again to destroy humanity by flood
D) Impending doom

12) When Lot’s wife disobeys God and looks back at the destruction of Sodom, God punishes her by transforming her into ________.

A) A pillar of salt
B) A pillar of pepper
C) A pillar of paprika
D) A man

13) Do unto others ________.

A) As they would do unto you, only do it first
B) As you would have others do onto you
C) As you see fit
D) As a Philistine would

14) What did David do to Goliath after slaying him?

A) Stripped off his clothing
B) Castrated him
C) Cut off his head
D) All of the above

15) Jesus performed what amazing miracle on Lazarus?

A) Healed his blindness
B) Brought him back from the dead
C) Healed his paralysis
D) Healed his impotence

16) When you are struck in the face you should ________.

A) Strike the person who hit you in their face
B) Punch the person but not in the face
C) Stab the person
D) Turn the other cheek

17) In the 1961 film King of Kings, Jeffrey Hunter starred as Jesus. What other iconic figure has he played?

A) Tarzan
B) Captain Christopher Pike
C) James Bond
D) Felix Leiter

18) Christ’s disciple Matthew held what job?

A) Blacksmith
B) Tax collector
C) Loan shark
D) Fisherman

19) God appeared before Moses in the form of_______.

A) A genie
B) A burning cart
C) A burning bush
D) A talking donkey

20) He who lives by the sword shall _____

A) Defeat he who lives by the rock
B) Sleep more easily
C) Die by poison
D) Die by the Sword

21) The Good Samaritan kindly helped a beaten stranger he met on the road even though____.

A) He was drunk
B) He was late for a human sacrifice
C) He was not a Hebrew
D) All of the above

22) Moses amazed the court of the pharaoh by transforming his staff into a____.

A) A spear
B) A serpent
C) A monkey
D) Gold

23) The place where some souls must undergo purification before going onto heaven is known as __________.

A) Purgatory
B) Hell
C) Ireland
D) Neverworld

24) When God asked Cain where his brother Abel was, Cain replied_______.

A) “I think he went fishing.”
B) “It wasn’t me.”
C) “Did you look in the storage hut?
D) “Am I my brother’s keeper?”

25) The doctrine that in some circumstances the Pope cannot be wrong is known as_________.

A) The Peter Principle
B) Papal Infallibility
C) The Uncertainty Principle
D) Penal Code

ANSWERS:
1 C
2 B
3 B
4 D
5 D
6 A
7 C
8 D
9 B
10 A
11 C
12 A
13 B
14 C
15 B
16 D
17 B
18 B
19 C
20 D
21 C
22 B
23 A
24 D
25 B

SCORING: For each correct answer, give yourself four points. 100-90: Welcome to America, you’re a bona fide Christian. 80-89: You’ve squeaked by, but brush up on the Bible! 70-79. Sorry, go back where you came from and bone up. Feel free to try again in six months. 60-69. Hit the road, heathen. Hope you have better luck applying to ISIS.

If you enjoyed this article, check out C. Michael Forsyth’s collection of news satire, available on Kindle and in other eBook formatsBizarre News Cover 5.

36 Euphemisms for “Lie” White House Correspondents Can Use   Leave a comment

pinochio

By C. Michael Forsyth

Journalists nationwide are scratching their heads, trying to figure out how to cover President Trump without using the word “lie.” While the prez has been caught making a slew of statements that aren’t quite true, news outlets such as NPR are avoiding the term out of concern that it sounds too judgmental.

“We’re scrambling to find other ways to say it,” said one befuddled newspaperman. “We don’t want readers to think we’re biased or disrespectful.”

As an aid to journalists, we’ve put together this handy list of three dozen terms they can use instead of the offensive “lie.”

Tall Tale
Whopper
Fib
Stretcher
Misrepresentation
Falsehood
Fiction
Untruth
Concoction
Canard
Prevarication
Cock and bull story
Fish story
Poppycock
Booty chatter
Bull honky
Crock
Flapdoodle
Inveracity
Misstatement
Prevarication
Rubbish
Twaddle
Piffle
Malarkey
Codswallop
Pish posh
Hokum
Baloney
Hooey
Hogwash
Moonshine
Balderdash
Horse manure
Jiggery-pokery
Bunk

If you enjoyed this article, check out C. Michael Forsyth’s collection of news satire, available on Kindle and in other eBook formatsBizarre News Cover 5.

Trump Wall to be Guarded by Night’s Watch, Just like in “Game of Thrones.”   Leave a comment

the_wall

The Wall in Game of Thrones is nearly 700 feet high

By C. Michael Forsyth

WASHINGTON — Uncle Donald wants YOU — to join the noble band of brothers who will guard Trump Wall, just like the Night’s Watch in the hit HBO series Game of Thrones.

Thousands of patriotic Americans nationwide have already volunteered to man the $25 billion border wall that’s being built to protect the U.S. from Mexicans.

“Letters are pouring in from around the country from men and women who want to join the elite force,” said a White House source. “The wall will be tall, yes, perhaps as high as 40 feet, huge. But it would be comparatively easy for Mexicans to dig under it. We need real heroes to make sure that doesn’t happen.”

In Game of Thrones, the Night’s Watch is a military order that guards the Wall, an immense ice structure that separates the northern border of the Seven Kingdoms from the lands beyond. The Wall keeps out threats such as white walkers, wildings and giants. The Trump Rangers, as the guardians have tentatively been dubbed, will play a similar role guarding the wall that will stretch along the 1900-mile border between the United States and Mexico.

In the popular fantasy series, the Night’s Watch is drawn from the dregs of society, including petty criminals, street urchins, bastards and outcasts. Likewise, a checkered past — including a less-than-unblemished rap sheet — won’t keep you from a spot atop Trump Wall. Almost any American with gumption and an eagerness to serve has what it takes to be a Trump Ranger.

“You don’t need a fancy high school diploma or other special qualifications,” the aide explained. “We’re not looking for people with a background in law enforcement or the military. That would be prohibitively expensive. We’re looking for enthusiasm, patriotism and loyalty to our President. We’ll give you the training you need.”

While the heroes’ job may sound glamorous, conditions at the southern border — blazing hot in the day, freezing at night – will be more uncomfortable than many citizens can bear. So Trump Rangers are likely to include undocumented immigrants.

Said the aide, “These people are willing to do jobs most American’s don’t want.”

jon-snow

Brave and noble Jon Snow leads the ragtag Night’s Watch.

If you enjoyed this article, check out C. Michael Forsyth’s collection of news satire, available on Kindle and in other eBook formatsBizarre News Cover 5.

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