Tuesday, April 30, 2013

May 1st: What to say to your children about Osama

It has become necessary to resurrect Osama as the Anti-Santa
Every Osama Day (May 1st) Homelanders celebrate of the death of Osama bin Laden, the greatest terrorist leader of all time.

However, this new American holiday has made parents anxious.  From Maine to Nevada, mothers and fathers ask us how to talk to children about Osama. It is a good question.

Because Osama Day is a joyous day, the Secretary of Fear is concerned that the most important part of the OBL legacy could easily be lost on the next generation.  "Children need to be reminded why we celebrate Osama's death," SecFear said.

Last year the problem was put to our staff psychologists.  After studying the matter, they concluded, first, that parents need to talk with kids about Osama. Second, they said the best time to have the talk is before the death celebrations. Third, they said that "a powerful consumer experience" must reinforce the conversation.

Our team -- the same guys who reverse-engineered CERN torture endurance training -- came up with a story suitable for parents to tell young children.  It goes like this:
Johnny, sit down, we're going to have a talk.  No not that talk.  Listen up, tomorrow is an important day in our Homeland's history.  Do you know what May 1st is famous for?  (Now, it's possible that Johnny's Marxist-Leninist social studies teacher has put the idea into your child's head that May 1st is "International Workers Day", "Labor Day", or God forbid, "Occupy Wall Street May Day".  If any these ideas come out of Johnny's mouth, you have a see-say situation on your hands: report the teacher.)

May1st is a happy day. The whole country comes together to celebrate the death of a bad man named Osama.  Basically what happened, Johnny, was Seal Team 6 flew into Pakistan under the cover of darkness and crash landed in Osama's backyard.  Our soldiers piled out of the wreckage of the chopper, broke into Osama's house and shot him dead.  Ordinarily, the department would have used drones, but then the CIA couldn't have made a good movie about it.  In the morning they threw Osama's body into the deep blue sea.

April 30th is OBL Eve. "OBL" are Osama's initials and "eve" means "the night before." In the South people say "Obleve."  Every Christmas Eve Santa gives your presents, doesn't he?  Well, OBL Eve is similar but there's one big difference:  Osama is the Anti-Santa.  What do you suppose the Anti-Santa does, Johnny?   (This is a good time to pause.  Let Johnny mull this one over.)

On OBL Eve, Osama Claus, the Anti-Santa, travels around the world on a Russian tank pulled by eight camels.  He stops at every house.   In the morning, the children of the house discover that their favorite toys have been destroyed.  (Leave a squiggly illegible note with the ruined toys. The squiggles should be your best approximation of Arabic. Johnny is crying hysterically.  Give him a hug before you continue.)  
Hey, cheer up big guy.  It's good for the economy.  In 8 months (fewer if Johnny's birthday is coming up, longer if you're still unemployed) Santa will bring you new toys.    

(That's what you tell Johnny the night before. If you haven't maxed-out all your credit cards, in the morning while Johnny holds his shattered toy and wipes away his tears, you surprise the kid.  You hand him a brand new toy. Besides terrifying your child, the idea of this holiday, as with all the others, is to help your family become more energized consumers.)
Happy Osama Day!

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Dr. Rebecca Wolf
Undersecretary for Community and New Media
United States Department of Fear