Friday, March 10, 2006

Couple Marry, Slip On Banana Peel

Las Vegas, USA

A couple slipped on a discarded banana peel early yesterday morning outside a wedding chapel after getting married.

Gerald Moreno, 36, of New Mexico, and Lisa De Witt, 46, of Arizona, mis-stepped while sauntering out of the Elvis Presley Suspicious Minds Chapel to a young boy, 9, who had been paid by the couple to wait outside and shower confetti on them after they emerged from the chapel.

As they carried on a display of smiling and kissing for the Polaroid cameras, operated by another 9-year-old, eyewitness reports stated that Moreno made the unfortunate step of avoiding a steaming pile of dog poo but accidentally slipped on a banana peel instead. His new bride also slipped and almost suffocated him due to the bouffant shape of her white wedding dress.

After rising from the ground and dusting himself and his bride off, Moreno cheerfully told our reporter that Sathya Sai Baba had indicated his invisible presence at their wedding. "Strangely enough, slipping on banana peels has been a prominent feature of our whirlwind romance. I've written about it on my website. I slipped on a banana peel around a month ago which I felt to be a portent, and then I slipped on another one on Valentine's Day when I met my lovely Lisa," he gushed. "I have no doubt that Swami approves of this alliance and that, with our union, we are carrying out Sai's will."

The blushing bride made no comment. After she proudly displayed her ring, Moreno grinned and said, "Here's hoping I don't slip on another one while I'm carrying her over my threshold!"

Saturday, March 04, 2006

Sai Baba Suffering Lack Of Attention

Puttaparthi, South India

His Holiness Sri Sathya Sai Baba has been diagnosed as suffering from a severe form of the Lesser Attention Syndrome Tachypnea (LAST) disorder, which is characterised as experiencing rapid breathing caused by a serious lack of public attention.

Events have been creeping this way for some time. After consulting with his publicity agent to discuss ways of increasing his public profile, he collapsed while clutching his chest outside the local clinical dispensary.

An ambulance arrived at the scene and quickly transported him for free treatment at his own hospital. Doctors considered the situation to be so critical that the Baba was immediately prescribed a dedicated photojournalist to accompany him 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Latest reports suggest that the Baba is slowly recovering and his condition has been described as "stable". Upcoming newspaper articles later this week are currently being designed to impress the Baba and nurse him back to full health, but the outlook remains bleak.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Woman Slips On Banana Peel, Falls Into Man's Arms

February 14th
New Mexico, United States

Lisa De Witt, an Arizona resident, slipped on a banana peel outside Gerald Moreno's apartment yesterday evening.

De Witt, 56, had driven interstate to attend a crisis meeting of Sathya Sai Baba's defenders, who are suffering a wave of onslaughts against their personal behavior and credibility. The accident happened as she was just about to walk in through Moreno's gateway, whereupon she slipped and lost her balance.

Unknown to her, Moreno was outside doing some gardening and had hid behind the fence in order to surprise her with a loud 'boo!'

He managed to catch her in his arms as she fell. Witnesses reported that they looked into each other's eyes and... fell in love.

The banana peel mysteriously vanished again, although it was last seen to have curled into a smiley shape.

Monday, February 13, 2006

Man Slips On Banana Peel, Blames Sai Baba

New Mexico, United States

Gerald Moreno, 36, accidentally slipped on a banana peel yesterday while walking home from the grocery store.

Skipping and whistling a Disney tune, he failed to notice the banana peel in his path and inadvertently stepped on it, causing him to land on his behind in the middle of the sidewalk. Shocked bystanders rushed to help him up while neighborhood children pointed and laughed.

Moreno himself had no comment to make on the incident, though he was later witnessed to point and talk in an aggressive manner to a picture of Sai Baba.

The banana peel had mysteriously vanished and was thus unavailable for comment.

Sunday, February 12, 2006

Sai Baba Cartoons Cause Carnage

Enraged by editorial cartoons morphing the face of religious leader Sathya Sai Baba with the crotch-grabbing body of Michael Jackson, radical anti-Jacko extremists burned Tribune offices in London, Denmark and Afghanistan.

Rioters carrying banners chanted "Death to the users and makers of Adobe PhotoShop™!!"

Protesters also burned effigies of SNN anchorman Reed Forrester, who had insulted the Saislamic fashion world by accidentally referring to Shirdi Osama's "turban" as a "turd bin."

Also during last night’s 13 O’Clock News broadcast, the controversial fake newsman flattened a glob of Silly Putty over a newspaper cartoon of Shirdi Osama and then stretched the terrorist cleric's inky likeness into funhouse mirror-like shapes while making silly voices.

Muslim and Christian pundits joined together in denouncing Forrester as an "idiot."

International Sai Tribune/SNN is under increasing pressure not to publish a cartoon titled "Muhammad the Menace," in which the face of boxing champ Muhammad Ali is superimposed onto the body of Dennis the Menace. Ali/Dennis is seen hollering at a policeman, "Listen up if you ever wanna see the infidel Mr. Wilson again!!"

President Bush this morning consulted the Wizard of Oz for guidance in a bold move to appeal for calm. Hagar the Horrible could not be reached for comment.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Sai Cartoon Timeline

The International Sai Tribune looks at the escalating row over the publication of cartoons satirizing Sathya Sai Baba.

2006

8 February: Citing absolute freedom of the press and defying Mussailman anger, the International Sai Tribune reprints the images.

7 February: Several hundred Iranians attack the British embassy in Tehran as the country announces it is cutting all trade ties with Britain.

6 February: Protests claim lives - at least five people are killed in Afghanistan, and a teenage boy dies after protesters attack police in Somalia.

5 February: Lebanese demonstrators set the British embassy in Beirut on fire. Interior Minister Hassan Sabeh resigns over the violent protests.

4 February: Extremist Syrian Sai devotees attack British and Norwegian embassies in London, prompting UN chief Kofi Annan to call for calm.

2 February: The editor of the French newspaper France Soir is sacked for printing the cartoons.

1 February: Papers in France, Germany, Italy and Spain reprint the caricatures, defying Mussailman outrage.

30 January: Gunmen raid the EU's offices in Gaza, demanding an apology over the cartoons.

26 January: Saudi Arabia recalls its ambassador to Britain, while Libya says it is closing its embassy in London.

2005

10 December: The British blog defends the freedom of the press.

9 December: Extreme Sai-Allah devotees voice their anger and vow revenge.

4 December: More graphic images appear in same blog, depicting Sai Baba receiving oral sex, as an alien hair stylist and as a football player.

1 December: A British blog, Sai Baba Exposed, reprints the cartoons.

30 November: A series of composite images depicting Sai Baba as pop singer Michael Jackson and an egg-laying goose, are published by the India Corporate Watch blog.

Those Funny Cartoons

*** Special Edition ***

London, England

In defiance of international Mussailman outrage and citing freedom of the press, the International Sai Tribune hereby republishes the offending images. The Tribune asks: 'What influences your understanding of Sai-Islam more? Harmless cartoons or anthrax scares?'





















Tribune's Cartoon Dilemma

*** Special Edition ***

As the row over the cartoons of the Sathya Sai Baba has intensified, media executives - in television, print and online - have faced some difficult decisions.


Should they publish the pictures and risk offending Mussailman readers and viewers? Or by not showing them, would they be preventing the public from coming to informed opinions about the controversy? Many people have rung or called the IST complaining that the cartoons are not being shown on television news or the website.

Reports have shown brief glimpses of the pictures in some of the European newspapers which have published them, but no close-ups.

Louise May wrote: "You cannot report a news subject relating to a visual matter without showing that matter."

'Spineless'

Other readers said the IST was being spineless, and Petra Arnold commented: "It appears that you are scared of the reaction from Mussailmans, while you were not concerned about offending Christians when you satirized Sai Baba as Santa Sai. This is a case of double standards."

George Donaldson said he had to visit the British National Party website to see pictures for himself. "It bothers a lot of people that have to pay TV license fees then have to go to the BNP to get the real news," he wrote.

Michael Gleason was concerned on a practical level: "You ask for comments on the Sai Baba cartoons but I can't find the cartoons on your website. How do you expect me to have an opinion without seeing the cartoons?"

But some viewers felt the IST shouldn't be showing the pictures in any form.

"As a British Mussailman, I feel very let down, insulted and misunderstood by the insensitivity of the IST in even contemplating showing such disrespectful images," said Samia Rahman.

Peter Holden, the editor of TV News, said it had been a difficult dilemma. "Obviously the IST does not want to give offence to anyone on either side of this debate, so if people - whichever side of the argument they fall within - have taken offence, I am obviously concerned and apologize for that," he told NewsWatch.

"In reporting this story, we ourselves had to make a decision about whether we published the pictures in any form and inevitably that's made us part of the controversy. "We've taken the view that still images that focus and linger on the offending cartoons would be excessively offensive so we haven't used those in our news pieces. We've used moving pictures of the newspapers where they've appeared to show people the context in which they've appeared and to give them some flavor of the type of imagery but without focusing closely on them."

Mr Holden said there wasn't a direct comparison with the satire of Santa Sai , which had prompted thousands of complaints from concerned Christian devotees.

Censorship

"The IST is not the primary publisher of these cartoons so to some extent it's different from Santa Sai where the IST was responsible for reporting actual news events," he explained.

And he denied accusations of censorship by the IST. "I think if you compare the IST's position to the whole of the blog universe, where there hasn't been any publication whatsoever, we've clearly gone further than any blog.

"But clearly we've taken a decision not to go further than that in order not to gratuitously offend the significant number of Mussailmans in Britain but also - because we make decisions for our pieces to be broadcast internationally - the very significant numbers of Mussailmanlim readers of the International Sai Tribune. Its all about the ratings."

Cartoon Riots Continue To Rage

*** Special Edition ***

Key figures from the UN, the EU and a prominent pan-Saislamic body have jointly called for calm in the wake of outrage over cartoons of Sathya Sai Baba.

UN Secretary General Kofi Annan and his counterparts called the drawings offensive, but expressed alarm at the violent worldwide reaction to them. The prime minister of Great Britain, where the cartoons were first published, said they had led to a "global crisis".

Several people have been killed in angry protests, mostly in Afghanistan. In France, a court threw out on technical grounds an application for an injunction against a satirical publication that planned to print the 10 caricatures in its Thursday edition.

The editor of Charlie-Hebdo welcomed the ruling. "criticizing religion is legitimate in a state of law and must remain so," Philippe Val said. But the Union of Saislamic organizations of France, one of the groups that applied for the injunction, said "one cannot insult a religion". Falthuli Patel continued, "To defend the dignity of one's religion does not mean one is radical."

But in a surprising and sickening development, the Sai-Allah devotees have called on Shirdi Osama to exact revenge on the ASA movement.

The satirical images comprising cartoons and Photoshopped pictures - which have been reproduced in more blogs - have been denounced throughout the Saislamic world. They were first published on the India Corporate Watch blog in November 2005, and include an image portraying Sai Baba receiving oral sex from a child. Several others display him as Michael Jackson, twice accused of pedophilia. Sai groups had tried to block the cartoons' publication, but the injunction failed on a technicality.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Tribune Offices In Anthrax Scare

Manchester, England

Employees at the London offices of the International Sai Tribune were involved in a security scare early yesterday morning. The incident involved a package that contained two packets of gray-white powder. The alarm was raised by the Regional Editor, who was the beneficiary of the package.

"I had no idea what was happening," said the Editor, who requested anonymity to protect his identity. "All I did was open my mail as usual until I came to that package. I opened it and found two packets of powder with religious symbols on it. I thought this involved terrorists and anthrax and I carefully placed them on the desk to prevent the packets from rupturing and dispersing the powder everywhere and then I started screaming for security, made a few calls and then got the hell outta there."

Forensic examiners cordoned off the offices and carried out investigations into the nature of the substance. No civilians were injured although large numbers of Tribune staff were badly shaken. "Its Al-Saida again!" screamed Sharon Moffatt, a secretarial advisor.

After a ten-hour investigation, forensic officer Lynne Huges, 41, emerged to make a statement.

"After careful investigation, we can confirm that the substance in question is not anthrax. It does, however, have a chemical constitution akin to cow-dung burnt to ashes."

Tribune employees and bystanders continued to speculate about possible Al-Saida connections, quoting the various other anthrax scares in the United States and the presence of religious symbols on the packet. A CID officer later confirmed that the markings on the packet closely resembled the 'Sarvadharma' symbol of the Sri Sathya Sai Organization, which affirmed its respect for the tenets of prominent world religions. The powder itself is believed to be the popular vibhuti that is allegedly produced in large quantites by Sri Sathya Sai Baba, an Indian religious leader and suspected homosexual.

"We're still investigating possible terrorist connections and Al-Saida hasn't been eliminated from our enquiries. The 'G.M.' mark on the back of the envelope is difficult to explain. It could be a terrorist code for 'Greater Manchester', we're not sure yet."

The investigation continues.