Scandals R Us: We are starting to worry about our TV news brethren. Now that the president's impeachment crisis has evaporated and Hillary Clinton's Senate prospects have been dissected in every way imaginable (with the possible exception of having Sam Donaldson and Cokie Roberts consult a Ouija board), it's obvious that MSNBC, Fox News and other pundit breeding grounds have run out of topics to babble about.
For example, a recent episode of "Nightline" featured Alan Dershowitz and George Stephanopoulos arguing over why, on "Gilligan's Island," Thurston Howell III and his wife, Lovey, would bring so many clothes with them on a three-hour tour.
Needless to say, Off-Kilter finds this trend disturbing. For one thing, the Howells were upstanding human beings and thus shouldn't be psychoanalyzed by TV pundits. For another, our tax accountant says that if we don't write something else about our recent vacation to Washington, D.C., the IRS won't allow it as a deduction.
Therefore, we wish to mention that during our trip to the nation's capital, we went to the White House to advise President Clinton on the pundit problem.
We were given a special Secret Service escort and, after the handcuffs were removed and bail was posted, told that we weren't the first person to try to sneak into the Oval Office wearing a black beret, blue dress and Monica wig. Dennis Rodman pulled the same stunt.
So we didn't get to present our idea for a Scandal-of-the-Month Club designed to quench the media's thirst for lurid stories.
Under the plan, reporters, special prosecutors and vast right-wing conspiracies would pay to receive a salacious new rumor or accusation every month. Each scandal would come with a custom White House denial and money-back guarantee.
We even had an idea for the first scandal: Have President Clinton shoot Tinky-Winky, the purple Teletubby who was recently accused of being homosexual by Jerry Falwell. It would drive the Republicans over the edge. On the one hand, they'd want to impeach Clinton for attempted murder; on the other, he'd be their hero because Tinky-Winky is gay.
Tick Tock Bureau: Keeping time is one of mankind's oldest endeavors, from sundials and hourglasses to quartz crystals and atomic clocks. Now, as the 21st century approaches, scientists have perfected the ultimate timepiece: the Sea Monkey Digital Watch.
According to the New York Times, a company called Exploratoy has created a wristwatch that features a miniature aquarium in which two sea monkeys can live for up to 24 hours. After that, the tiny creatures should be removed using the company's trademarked "acqua leash" and put back in their permanent home.
Flip a Coin Bureau: Someone just sent us a news report about a Hollywood woman who has been named "America's least decisive person," but we're not sure whether to print it.
Best Supermarket Tabloid Headline: "Champion Bullfighter Killed by Bulldozer!" (Weekly World News)
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