This morning, former Red Sox Pitcher Curt Schilling blamed the State of Rhode Island for the failure of his video game company. According to the Providence Journal, he blamed the state for not giving him more tax breaks. Additionally, the Journal reported, Schilling has lost “33 pounds in the past 45 days, which he calls a ‘surreal’ stretch.’”
What follows is an exercise in satire….
The State of Rhode Island is pleased to announce the creation of a new state-sponsored video game company, “Thirsty-Ate Studios.”
“After years of complaining about job creation and fiscal woes,” said Governor Lincoln Chafee, “we are finally investing tax payer dollars in something valuable—pixels!”
The new Massive Multiplayer Online game, which is based on the State’s trademarked “Little Rhody Corruption System,” (patent pending) offers every Rhode Islander a chance to earn as good a wage as a World of Warcraft gold farmer in China.
“Now, we can finally say that we are educating our children for the jobs of the future,” said Education Commissioner Deborah Gist. “Video game playing is profitable, and we’re going to be rolling out a new curriculum in the fall teaching every student that video game playing, like reading, is hard work. Of course there will be rigorous testing conducted every three days just to make sure that our teachers are doing their jobs.”
The Department of Education will be purchasing thousands of used and obsolete video game consoles at full price from the Extraordinary Rendition training division of Halliburton, a security company owned by former Vice President Dick Cheney.
According to former EDC director Keith Stokes, the new official state video game will be named, “No Reckoning—Escape from Responsibility.”
“Each player will become an elected official, whose goal will be to collect special interest funding and distribute perks, no-show jobs, and state contracts,” Stokes said. “Bonus points can be earned by making random speeches in ‘obfuscation’ mode and by kissing babies.”
The game will include the following stand-alone App modules:
- Legislative Blockus: Senators and representatives vie to stall important bills from coming to the floor, and then force them through a vote at the last moment with as many hidden clauses as possible.
- The Ferdinand St. Germain Running of the Pork: Intrepid politicians chase lobbyists in the shape of greased pigs through State House halls in search of a payoff.
- The Ed DiPrete Dumpster Diving: where contestants search through trash bins for bags of cash.
- The Vincent “Buddy” Cianci Pentathalon: including a burning log roll, marinara cook-off, creepy crony collection contest, RICO smackdown, and finally a free-for-all radio talk show comedy slam.
- The David Cicilline Pass the Buck: A digital version of hot political potato. Whoever is the mayor when the timer goes off loses all credibility points.
- The Joe Mollicone Bank Run: Get all your money out of the country before the credit unions collapse.
- The Joseph Paolino Real Estate Swap: Like Monopoly. Collect as much property as you can in downtown. Keep it unoccupied so that the property taxes stay low. Wait until the government knocks down the highway to make it “prime waterfront” then collect your payoff.
- The Donald Carcieri Ostrich Hide and Seek: You play a large preening flightless bird. Sqwaack loudly and give away millions of taxpayer dollars while complaining that poor people aren’t doing their fair share. Then bury your head in the sand and don’t say a peep. Maybe no one will notice.
While many of these modules are still in development, one current favorite is the Department of Motor Vehicle Paperwork Maze. Find your way to the only open office, get in line to get a number, and then see how many bureaucrats it takes before you are allowed to leave. There is no time limit.
“I’m really keen on that one,” said Governor Chafee. “Of course I usually ride my horse or get a lift in my chauffeured limo, but if I ever went to a bar and they asked me for my driver’s license, it would be a bit embarrassing to say that I never got one.”
In related news, former Red Sox Pitcher Curt Schilling has hit number one with his new bestseller, “How to Win the World Series, Bilk the Government for Millions, and Lose 33 pounds in 45 days.”
Mark Binder is an author and professional liar. His latest novella, “The Buddha Who Wore Keds” is available for Kindle at: amzn.to/buddha_kindle