Web Exclusive: The Babbler’s shocking predictions for 2018 (Fiction)

Will Obama save the world in 2018?

Once again, our psychics nailed their predictions for 2017. Trump survived his first term. Mayor Roger Claar was in a tight election, which he won. Jay Cutler left the Bears, and President Donald Trump had an inauguration so rough that the White House had to lie about it.

Sure, some of the more skeptical bloggers on Freethought Blogs will point out our errors and the things we missed. Chicago didn’t become a part of Canada, and we didn’t predict our move to this blog network.

Predicting the future isn’t an exact science. Still, we think our psychics did a good job, and we hope you will consider their visions for the new year. At least this year, they were able to wake up from their trances without screaming in horror!

So here are our predictions for 2018:

***

During the Winter Olympics, Trump will decide to launch a nuclear attack. After entering the codes, a message from former President Barack Obama will appear.

“Donald! I knew you couldn’t resist the opportunity to use our nuclear weapons. So, I took the liberty of keeping the real nuclear football and giving you this replica. I can’t let you risk the reputation of this great nation by committing genocide. Well, by committing genocide again. We aren’t perfect. Anyway, you can play with your little football, and I’ll keep our huge stockpile of peacekeepers safe and secure until a reasonable person takes office.”

Obama will go into hiding, while Trump will unleash the mother of all Twitter rants.

***

During a Bolingbrook Village Board meeting, Claar will try to humiliate Trustee Robert Jaskiewicz – by letting him propose an ordinance with the expectation that the other trustees, who are members of Claar’s Bolingbrook First party, would refuse to second it.

To Claar’s surprise, all of his trustees will second the proposal. After Jaskiewicz gives a short speech, Claar will say that anyone who votes for the ordinance is a foe of Bolingbrook. He will then call for a roll-call vote.

When it is their turn to vote, each Bolingbrook First trustee will struggle to say anything. “I can’t say the ’n’ word!” one of them will cry.

Frustrated, Claar will lash out at Trustee Rick Morales. “You’ve voted no in the past. Why can’t you do it now?”

“You said there is no “no” in a team and if I want to stay on the team, I can never vote “no.” But I can’t vote with Bob. I’m so confused. I can’t tell you to get with the program because you are the program, Roger.”

Jaskiewicz will chuckle. “You’ve conditioned your trustees never to vote no. They can’t overcome it.”

The final vote will be one vote “no,” one vote “yes,” and five abstentions. After the voting, the Bolingbrook First trustees will either be crying, passed out, or reading their trustee reports out loud.

“That’s just great,” Claar will say.

***

A prominent leader in the atheist movement will file a $1 trillion lawsuit against all Christian dominations.

“I’ve built my career on the fact that Jesus never existed,” the prominent atheist will say. “By promoting the myth of Jesus, these organizations are maliciously attacking my work and raising slanderous questions about my sanity. I have no choice but to defend my reputation.”

***

The business world will be shocked when Bolingbrook’s Ulta buys UPS. Ulta will then disrupt e-commerce by announcing that they will no longer handle Amazon’s freight.

“Maybe it is overkill to buy a global freight company,” an executive will say. “But something has to be done to stop Amazon from destroying retail sales. Will someone think of the malls?”

Surprisingly, the move will only inspire Amazon to expand its own logistical services. Most of the world will not see any disruptions in deliveries.

“We’re so big that the economy bends to our will,” an anonymous Amazon executive will say. “Soon every American will either work for us or work to support us. In the end, there can be only one corporation. Let it be Amazon!”

Clow UFO Base survives holiday concert (Fiction)

By Reporter X

Clow UFO Base once again survived its annual holiday concert. Officials were quick to call it a success.

“The stats speak for themselves,” said Bolingbrook Mayor Roger Claar.  “Arrests were down a half a percent.  We had one less visitor hospitalized this year than last.  We also confiscated one ton of corn cobs before the concert.  I think it helped that we banned Festivus celebrations this year.  The feats of strengths and airing of grievances were creating too many problems for our security staff.  Now were there unfortunate incidents during the concert?  Yes; but it wouldn’t be a Clow Holiday Cultural Event without an incident or two, would it?”

The concert, officially titled, “A Study of Contrasts Between Traditional Christmas Music and Christmas Music Composed in the Late 20th Century/Early 21st Century,” started with a moment of silence in honor of former Bolingbrook Mayor Edward “Rosie” Rosenthal, who recently died of natural causes.  The first two performances were by the Bolingbrook High School alien choir and the Bolingbrook High School Alien Show Choir, both of which were well received.

Trouble began when three aliens suffered convulsions during a slide show presentation of the Village Board members’ children and grandchildren.  The three were hospitalized and are in stable condition.

“Sometimes our visitors can be overwhelmed cuteness,” said a doctor who asked not to be named.  “What can I say?  Our leaders have cute kids.”

After the slideshow, Trustee Robert Jaskiewicz was invited to walk on stage.  He was handed a piece of paper and asked to sing along to the music.  When the music started, he sang the beginning of “Little Drummer Boy.”

Seconds later, Trustee Michael Lawler walked on stage and sang “Peace on Earth/Can it be?” He smiled as he walked towards Jaskiewicz and kept singing.

Claar charged on to the stage and ordered the music to be stopped.

“Michael,” he yelled.  “What are you doing?  We are supposed to be shunning that man, not singing with him.”

“But I always wanted to sing a Bowie song on stage.”

“At the New Years party, you can sing ‘Fashion’ if you need to.  Now get off this stage!  You too, Stankiewicz.”

“Jaskiewicz,” Jaskiewicz replied.

“Whatever.”

The next band, Night Castle, was supposed to perform cover versions of Trans-Siberian Orchestra songs.  When they entered the stage, the lead guitarist announced that they had left their sheet music in their quarters.

“So we’re going to pay tribute to our second favorite album from Earth.  With a twist, of course.”

Night Castle started playing “American Idiot” by Green Day, and changed the chorus to “Don’t want to be a Bolingbrook Idiot.”  An alien, wearing an orange Claar mask, marched to the center of the stage.  Six aliens, wearing costumes that resembled the elected members of Claar’s Bolingbrook First party, ran up to the Claar impersonator, dropped to their knees and bowed before him.  Then aliens wearing Bolingbrook United shirts ran onto the stage. They were chased by aliens wearing Bolingbrook police uniforms and waving batons.  Some audience members then tried to rush the stage.

Claar walked up to the window of his luxury box and made an obscene gesture at the band.  The stage lights and sound were cut off, and Men in Blue stormed the stage, arresting the performers.

Claar then turned towards Jaskiewicz.  Jaskiewicz shrugged.

Tim Minchin, the final performer, finished his set by performing “White Wine in the Sun.”  During the performance, Trustee Sheldon Watts turned his back and plugged each ear with a finger.

After Minchin finished, the aliens gave him a standing ovation.  Minchin bowed then started writing on two sheets of paper.  He then held them up.  One read, “New World Order.”  The other read, “Illuminati.”  He tore up both sheets then wrote on a third sheet and held it up.  It read: “One Universe, One Humanity.  One Family.”

The aliens and many Clow staffers cheered.

Claar shook his head.  According to some sources, he ordered Minchin and Night Castle placed on the ‘banned for life from Clow’ list.

While the concert didn’t go as planned, many aliens said they enjoyed the show.

“These concerts are the best argument for anarchy,” said an alien who asked not to be named.

Also in the Babbler:

Bolingbrook Resident: My website will settle all political debates
Claar:  No rap concerts before Village Board Meetings
Bolingbrook police promise not to arrest Santa
God to smite Bolingbrook on 12/31/17

In memory of Edward ‘Rosie’ Rosenthal (Non-fiction)

My friend Edward “Rosie” Rosenthal died last Thursday at the age of 69.

Ed Rosenthal was Mayor of Bolingbrook from 1981 to 1985.  Part of his legacy as mayor included Bolingbrook’s tornado sirens.  Ed’s term featured many infrastructure improvements for Bolingbrook, although he did have to deal with his then rival, Roger Claar, who was a trustee at the time.  (Now Claar is the current Mayor of Bolingbrook, and he eventually became one of Ed’s friends.)

I suspect Ed will be better remembered as a long time science teacher at Naperville North, as well as the coach of the Girl’s Golf Team. I’ve been moved reading the many testimonials from his former students and athletes.  Many still met up with him years after he retired, and his Facebook page is filled with comments from former students.

Ed was also involved with the National Educational Association and was a negotiator for Naperville’s teacher’s union.  I remember reading his quotes in the paper as contract talks were close to the deadline.  He struck me as someone always willing to fight for the best deal, even if that sometimes meant taking cuts.  After he retired, he remained active with the NEA.

When I first met Ed, I believed that he wasn’t quite sure what to make of one of his daughter’s friends from the Internet.  I think I won him over soon afterward.  He helped me get settled in the Chicago area, and we eventually became neighbors in Bolingbrook.  I also enjoyed Thanksgiving dinners with his family. Whenever I had a question about Bolingbrook politics, he was always willing to answer it—though I now I suspect that there was more he wanted to share with me.

Ed also liked it whenever I mentioned him in a Bolingbrook Babbler article.  He even shared my “Mayors of Bolingbrook” article about him.

Ed was a very kind and helpful person to not only me but to his family and many others.  I feel honored to have been friends with him and he was an asset to Bolingbrook.  I and many others will miss him.

Military investigators question Mayor Claar about UFOs (Fiction)

Sources say military investigators questioned Mayor Roger Claar for about an hour about Clow UFO Base:

Many sources in Village Hall say the investigators were from the successor program to the Advanced Aviation Threat Identification Program.  They were investigating a UFO sighting in California.  These sources said the investigators considered Claar a person of interest because he has family in California, and because of the Babbler’s articles about Claar being the administrator of Clow UFO Base.

Clow is an airport,” Claar allegedly replied.  “It is not a UFO Base.  You can’t believe anything you read in the Babbler!”

“That’s interesting,” one investigator allegedly replied.  “PZ Myers says the same thing about the Babbler. But we spoke with military personnel who used to be close to PZ, and they said you cannot believe anything PZ says.  So if PZ is saying—”

“Oh, that’s just great!”  Claar allegedly snapped back.

Sources agree that the investigators showed Claar pictures of every UFO sighting in Illinois and California.

Claar, the sources say, was not happy with the questions:

“Just because something is unidentified, does not mean it is from outer space!  It could be drones, clouds, or hoaxes.  Don’t you guys read the Skeptical Inquirer?”

“Our superior officer says we shouldn’t read articles by people who don’t believe in UFOs.  They foster doubt about our mission.  If we doubt our mission, then we start doubting our superior officers.  If that happens, then who knows what would happen to the military.”

“I don’t want to know.”

Near the end, Claar pulled out his delegate card from the 2016 Republican Convention:

“See this card. It means I voted for our President at the convention.  I was willing to stick with him no matter how many rounds of votes it took to give him the nomination.  I remained a supporter after he was elected.  I didn’t distance myself from him during my last election.  As long as he doesn’t try to remove me from office, I will remain loyal to him.  Our President rewards loyalty.  So with that in mind, what do you think he would say if I called him right now?”

The investigators thanked him for his time and left.

When this reporter called for a comment, a receptionist answered the phone:

“Roger is preparing for this week’s Village Board meeting and cannot be disturbed.  Merry Christmas and/or Happy Holidays.”

In the background, a man who sounded like Claar said, “Hello Comcast?  I know our franchise agreement doesn’t expire until 2020, but I was hoping that you would consider creating a Bolingbrook-friendly Internet Tier for our residents.  I’ll send you a list of sites you can exclude that are not Bolingbrook-friendly.  I’m so glad the FCC repealed net neutrality so I can help my residents avoid fake content from my foes!”

Also in the Babbler:

Sources: Trump vows to take down Freethought Blogs
Canada offers to buy Chicagoland from the US
Elf on a shelf arrested for spying on children
God to smite Bolingbrook on 12/20/17

‘Reality hacking’ firm opens research center in Bolingbrook (Fiction)

Are we living inside a computer simulation?  Bolingbrook’s newest business, The Neo Center for the Study of Reality Coding, intends to find out.

At a private grand opening ceremony, attended by Mayor Roger Claar and all the village trustees, CEO Daniel C. Lovecraft explained the company purpose:

“Many billionaires, like Elon Musk, believe that the reality we live in is a computer simulation. Some have privately told us they want to escape the simulation or tweak it.  We want to help these folks, and with their funding, we might find the answer, eventually.”

Lovecraft cited a Bank of America study that says the odds that we live in a simulation are between twenty and fifty percent.   He added that since the odds are in favor of our reality being a computer simulation, it is a worthy investment to crack reality’s source code.

“Imagine making little changes, like giving every human unlimited access to food and water— Or even eliminating the need to eat or drink.  Everything is possible, including changes to our past.”

“Like changing the results of unjust elections?” asked Trustee Maria Zarate.

“Or eliminating the need for elections, entirely,” replied Lovecraft.

“I like that idea,” said Trustee Deresa Hoogland.

Claar praised the company’s decision to relocate to Bolingbrook.  “This is a top company with good-paying jobs that’s come here.  Just the other day, I praised McDonald’s for rebuilding a store in Bolingbrook. Now you guys are here.  That proves to me that Bolingbrook is not only good for business, it’s also good for business research.”

Trustee Robert Jaskiewicz was not impressed: “Didn’t someone do a study that disproved your theory?”

“That’s fake news,” replied Lovecraft.  “Besides, we’re just asking questions.  There’s no harm in that.”

“Yes, but did Roger give you a tax credit for locating your office here?”

“Bob,” Claar interrupted, “If you had attended the 3 AM meeting of the Bolingbrook Quantum Computing Commission, you would know the answer to that question.”

“I’ve never heard of that commission.”

“If you had asked the Village Attorney, he would have told you about it.”

“How would I know to ask the Village Attorney?  It’s not listed on the village website.”

“If you were a member of the Bolingbrook First party, you would have gotten the full orientation.”

“Yeah Bob,” added Trustee Rick Morales.  “Get with the program.”

“Exactly,” said Deputy Mayor Michael Lawler.  “You don’t want us to ask our new friend to edit your code, do you?”

Trustee Sheldon Watts later offered the company his blessing:

“I believe God exists in all realities and our programmers are doing God’s work.  Just because our parents created us does not mean that there is no God.  This is why I support STEM.  All things are possible through God.”

Later, a receptionist answered a call from this reporter to Claar’s office:

“Merry Christmas and/or Happy Holidays.  Roger is in a meeting and cannot be disturbed.”

In the background, a man who sounded like US Representative Peter Roskam said, “I just wanted to say thank you to the Bolingbrook First party for donating  $1000 to my campaign.”

“You’re welcome, but don’t mention it.  Our voters think we’re staying out of national politics.”

“I understand.  My middle-class voters think my tax cut bill will help them.”

Both men laughed.

Also in the Babbler:

Security tightened in Chicago in anticipation of Hanukkah Harry’s visit
Last Jedi premiere expected to draw record number of visitors to Clow UFO Base
Wereskunks to hold fundraiser for the Bolingbrook First Party
God to smite Bolingbrook on 12/15/17

Rocket sled crash-lands in Bolingbrook (Fiction)

A rocket sled crash-landed in Bolingbrook after shooting through the air at supersonic speeds.  Miraculously, no one was killed or injured. The crash only resulted in minor damage to a street.

Eyewitnesses as far north as Round Lake Beach claim to have heard a sonic boom as the sled flew through the sky:

“I heard this loud boom,” said an anonymous eyewitness from Lake Zurich.  “My daughter yelled that Santa’s sleigh was on fire.  I looked where she was pointing. I saw this red dot in the sky, with a trail of black smoke behind it.  I was so shocked that I told my daughter Santa wasn’t about to die in a sleigh accident because he isn’t real.  She hasn’t talked to me since.  I hope you’re happy that you ruined my daughter’s Christmas, Mr. Rocket Man.”

Monique, a Lisle resident who asked that we not use her last name, said she saw the rocket sled descending over her home: “At first I thought many in the lying media were wrong about Santa, and he was about to visit me.  Then I realized that his sled was dropping too fast to safely land.  I tried to wave him off, and I think I succeeded because another rocket fired and he gained altitude.  I believe in Santa now, even if he almost destroyed my home.”

Seconds after Monique’s sighting, the sled crashed into Royce RD and tumbled several yards down Concord LN, then came to a stop just short of Clover Lane.

Lenny, a Bolingbrook resident who asked that we not use his last name, saw the crash landing: “That flying sled almost hit my car.  I’m never driving down Royce RD again!”

After police and firefighters surrounded the sled, a man stepped out of a pod inside.  Eyewitnesses agree that he was wearing a charred Santa Suit, the remains of a fake beard, and a crash helmet.  He raised his right fist into the air.

“I just proved that Santa doesn’t exist!”  He said.  “There’s no way he travels at supersonic speed and makes precision stops at every home on Earth!  He’s impossible, just like that old blog post said!

Minutes later, Mayor Roger Claar appeared and scolded the pilot.  Claar told him that it was fortunate that no one died, and that the only damage was a few dents on the road.

“You could have hit the Honey-Jam Cafe or Portillo’s, or the site of the new Andy’s Frozen Custard.  What do you have to say for yourself?”

The pilot reached for his fireproof wallet and pulled out a credit card.

“How much can I legally donate to your campaign fund?”

Police immediately arrested the pilot but released him about an hour later. (Claar said he didn’t want to be known as “The mayor who arrested Santa” ). Some eyewitnesses say Claar told the pilot he was banned from Bolingbrook unless he agreed to do community service in Bolingbrook. “The Girl Scouts and Power Connection don’t count.”

Mayor Claar and the pilot could not be reached for comment.

Also in the Babbler:

Aliens laugh as Trustee Lawler says Bolingbrook will not tolerate drunk UFO pilots
Sources:  Steve Bannon threatens to run candidates in the 2019 Bolingbrook Election
New World Order close to making a decision about building a UFO Base in Peotone
God to smite Bolingbrook on 12/7/17