Ad Spot

WILSON: Chickadee splats

A rampant pestilence was about to overrun the Elven Kingdom of Harmonium – or so the Town Crier proclaimed from the midst of the town square. “An unknown epidemic, of unknown origin, with unknown symptoms, and unknown treatment options, could possibly be on its way. This information comes directly from the CDC. World collapse predicted. Stay tuned for updates.”

Confusion was the first order of business. Celebrity-endorsed Facebook rumors and conspiracy theories followed close behind. Ultimately, all hell broke loose as panicked Elves emptied store shelves of red-licorice and dandruff shampoo.

A news conference was hastily assembled by the Pols, the clan of Elves tasked with keeping the Kingdom running smoothly. As the eldest member of the Pols, the Great Polydent was (automatically) considered the wisest of all the Pols, which (automatically) made him the clan Chieftain. This, in turn, (automatically) made Polydent the duly-certified Chief of Chiefs over all of Harmonium – kind of a big deal. Polydent approached the microphone slowly, exhibiting a confident look of well-dressed, yet folksy, grandfatherly concern. “A flock of wayward chickadees is running amok. Unconfirmed, yet very troubling, reports are coming in from secret sources within the evil empire of Pandemonium.”

On cue, and before reporters could ask any questions, a bespectacled gentleman, wearing a white lab coat and a Napoleonic attitude, approached the lectern. “I am Dr. Antonym Faux, Assistant Director of the Ornithology Defense Department – ODD. I am an expert in fowl-borne diseases, specifically diseases from avian fecal droppings – more commonly known as Bird Splats.” Dr. Faux paused, took a drink of water, and waited for the reporters to get his name spelled correctly. “I’m not going to sugar-coat things. We have no idea how bad things could get.”

Every eye, ear, camera, microphoneand sign-language interpreter leaned in close, intent on understanding what Dr. Faux had to say. So far, none of it made any sense.

“Possibly reliable sources, have confirmed that maybe a flock of chickadees may have eaten bird-feed that was allegedly tainted with an unknown, but conceivably toxic, substance.” At this point, the teleprompter instructed Dr. Faux to pause. “If this is true (and we have no data to prove it isn’t), and if those chickadees decide to fly through our air space (and we have no data to prove they won’t), and if the suspected disease laden fowl choose to answer the call-of-nature directly over the heads of unsuspecting Elves (and we have no data to prove they wouldn’t), then the resulting Chickadee Splats could cause problems only envisioned in the darkest of imaginations…and I don’t need to tell you how bad that could be.”

The roomful of reporters could smell a ratings boost.

“Some people are suggesting the government of Pandemonium intentionally contaminated the bird-feed,” interjected Polydent. “We have no proof they didn’t. Therefore, out of concern for everyone’s health and safety, Harmonium must shut down. Everyone, stay home, stay inside, and do nothing for the next 14 days — possibly a month — certainly not much more than a year — or two.”

“If it is essential to leave home, it is essential to cover up.” The doctor explained the new safety protocols. “Carry an umbrella, everywhere, all the time. They might protect from the potential dangers of airborne Chickadee Splat. Protect yourself, everyone you love, and even folks you’ve never met and could never possibly know.”

“Chickadee Splats are real and worrisome,” cautioned Polydent. “I worry about every Elf in the Kingdom. We should all worry, together. Worrying together will help us through these worrisome times. Together, but not too close.”

Berrien County

Mount Calvary Baptist to host COVID-19 vaccination clinic March 5

Berrien County

COVID-19 UPDATE: Berrien County reports new COVID-19 death

Berrien County

Berrien County Health Department, Spectrum Health Lakeland give vaccination updates

Cass County

Applications open for Cass County Sheriff’s Community Scholarship

Berrien County

Berrien County commissioners send message to state on regionalizing COVID-19 approach

Cass County

Lewis Cass ISD to host superintendent interviews Monday

Cass County

Michigan Works! to open office in Cass County administration building

Business

Dollar General, marijuana microbusiness, Iron Shoe expansion coming to Niles

Dowagiac

Silver Creek Township Planning Commission tables short-term rental ordinance draft vote

News

New SOS online, self-service options coming soon

Business

Niles restaurant week to showcase 18 restaurants

Berrien County

COVID-19 UPDATE: Michigan reports 583,964 cases, 15,405 deaths

Cass County

Cass County GOP censures Congressman Fred Upton for vote against Marjorie Taylor Greene

Cass County

Cass County Veterans Affairs provides update to community

Business

Market Van Buren, MEDC announce formal partnership

Cassopolis

Cassopolis woman arrested for Dowagiac car theft

News

Niles Restaurant Week to host photo contest

Dowagiac

SMC plans to host in-person, outdoor graduation ceremonies

News

Niles PD to get body-worn cameras for each officer

Cass County

Cass County COA to reopen fitness center, select programs March 1

Berrien County

MSP Niles troopers arrest man who set own residence on fire

Berrien County

COVID-19 UPDATE: Berrien, Cass counties reports new COVID-19 deaths

Buchanan

YMCA of Greater Michiana to host second annual Day of Giving

Buchanan

Buchanan selects new city treasurer