* * *
Thank you, thank you.
Really, you’re too kind.
Okay, enough already.
It is an honor to stand in a room full of established professional journalists and accept this Maine Press Association award for opinion writing. There is really only one thing I can say, and that is:
Nyah, nyah, nyah.
That’s right, I thumb my nose at you! I wish you nothing but foul luck and agonizing health problems.
May a newly-mutated species of bacteria turn your intestines into its own amusement park!
If thousands of crazed muskrats charged into this room immediately and clawed your eyeballs into unrecognizable lumps of bloody pulp, it would not be soon enough!
Oops… wait. That part got mixed in from some other remarks I’m working on for my Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech. Sorry about that.
I admit I haven’t technically won the Nobel Peace Prize just yet, but I figure it won’t take long.
Now that I’ve received this award for opinion writing, international recognition for my efforts toward global disarmament and political harmony must be right around the corner.
In the meantime, there’s no reason I can’t use my Maine Press Association award as a platform to start promoting awareness of an important cause of some kind.
What cause should I choose? Climate change is taken. How about domestic violence, since October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month?
Suits me. Listen, we should all become more aware of domestic violence, because… oh, hang on. It turns out October is also Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
I just made the mistake of doing an Internet search on the month of October, and I found a government website that lists all the health-related observances for this month.
We’re also in the middle of Down Syndrome Awareness Month, Lupus Awareness Month, Healthy Lung Month, Sudden Infant Death Syndrome Awareness Month, Massage Therapy Awareness Month, and (just my luck) Eye Injury Prevention Month.
And that’s just the health-related ones. Never mind Cyber Security Awareness Month, Jazz Awareness Month, and Pants That Are Too Small For You But You Wear Them Anyway Awareness Month.
Whew! Anyway, now that the world is listening to me, take a moment to become aware of all these great causes.
Personally, I plan to divide up my prize money between all of them (there is no prize money, but again, please indulge my imagination).
Of course, there is one cause in particular that you and I should care about most, one that you should probably contact your legislators about immediately:
National Humor Columnist Awareness Month.
This critically important observance seeks to ensure that all underpaid, fly-by-night humor columnists out there get the recognition they deserve, in the form of becoming syndicated in thousands upon thousands of newspapers around the world.
So all you editors and publishers out there take a moment to become aware of the critical need to support individual creativity and the entertainment viability of newspapers by sending people like me hundreds of dollars a week.
Trust me. This is something you want and need to do. Do not make me bring in the muskrats.