Monday, April 02, 2007

Idle threat of the week

The best kind of victim is a victim of his own success. Over the past year Idle Threat of the Week has morphed from a goof on a poorly trafficked website to a phenomena on par with the other great weekly awards, like National League Player of the Week or Cool Robot of the Week.

As result of Idle Threat's higher profile, celebrities, nation states and inanimate objects have become more careful about issuing idle threats. This cautiousness especially pertains to Sundays, which is the day the panel -- who are usually unprepared for their duties -- meet to determine the winner.

The panel has responded to this new prudence by stretching the definition of idle and threat to realms the words have not previously visited.

Of course we are always on the look out for a clear cut idle threat -- it makes our jobs so much easier, and we don't have to go to bed at night with visions of violent battles against the English language.

That in mind, the panel was giddy when we opened yesterday's Washington Post to find a op-ed piece in which a pair of Vermonters threaten to pull the Green Mountain State from the union it has been a part of since 1791.

Our excitement was tempered when we noticed the date on the upper corner of the page: April 1rst.

But part of the farce of the article was the tone wasn't farcical at all. And when we googled the names of the authors we found they had both had made this same threat in previous years -- on days which were not April 1st.

There are too many reasons to list here that a Vermont secession is ridiculous to list here. So we will just point out that, unlike its neighboring New England states, Vermont receives more money from the federal government than it pays the federal government in taxes.

Vermonters are free to drive around in their beat-up old pick up trucks, getting fat off maple syrup and the government dole, until the rest of America switches to soy milk.

Then we just might cast burdensome Vermont off -- to enter into some some bitter multi-lingual cheese racket with the Québécois to its north.

Vermont might not contribute much to America on most weeks, but on this, the week March 26th to April 1rst, it shines as Idle Threat of the Week.

In the truest sense of the words.

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