Wednesday, April 4, 2012

A Modest Proclamation

Erik Smith claims I should not blog about this because it's making a joke about a serious thing. But that's part of the fun of being alive, right?

While sitting at my normal coffee shop / workplace, a strange conversational thread lead to this nearly offensive but genius joke.

Matt Groening tells a story about how he panicked at the last minute and, in the waiting room at Fox, replaced his idea for a Life is Hell animated show with The Simpsons, a show featuring caricatures of his family members.

Now, some dialogue:

Me: Now, who knows if that thing with Groening really happened. Same with Abraham Lincoln, right? Who knows if he really wrote the Emancipation Proclamation on the train on the way to the speech.

Andrew: Yeah, because the original idea was to EAT the slaves and he panicked.

Me: Well, that was satire, and it wouldn't really fly with his audience.

Andrew: Oh, crap. It might be better to free the slaves! 

Me: I don't want to risk losing the message in satire.

Andrew: So, it was originally a Modest Emancipation?

Me: Clearly.

A MODEST EMANCIPATION. that is the greatest lost political speech known to Western thought.

If you don't know what A Modest Proposal is, then this joke is lost on you. If making light of the composition of the Emancipation Proclamation offends you this joke, too, will be lost on you. But don't hold it against me.