I gave up my lifelong ambition for wealth, power and world domination a few years ago … right after I realized that wielding global influence required working weekends and didn’t come with a dental plan. Besides, I lack the drive, talent or family connections to get rich and I have too much self-respect to become a politician so there wasn’t much chance I was ever going to become the grand poo-bah anyway.
It’s kind of a shame though, just because I lack ambition does not mean I lack ideas. I’d make a lot of changes if I could be in charge for just one day. I don’t need much time, there are so many things that are obviously wrong with the world that I could get most of it fixed and still have time for Fox News to criticize the way I did it in prime time.
If I were king for a day, anyone caught wearing their pants below their waist would immediately be inducted into the Marine Corps. No questions asked, no discussions or trips home to pack because they will be issued everything they need (including pants) in boot camp where their Drill Instructor will ensure they are taught to wear them properly.
In my world people who “conversate” or can’t tell the difference between, there, they’re or their, mistake were for we’re, board for bored or then for than would be summarily executed. OK, maybe capital punishment is a bit extreme for poor grammar, but they would feel my wrath for misusing this King’s English! I’m thinking they should be forced to eat cottage cheese while listening to Joe Biden yodel. Maybe that’s too cruel; let’s stick to execution!
Oh, and while I’m thinking about it, production, distribution or possession of cottage cheese with intent to sell it would be a felony. Consuming it would a misdemeanor because eating cottage cheese is punishment enough.
In my monarchy it would be forbidden for university basketball coaches to get paid more than the governor of their state. Brain surgeons would make more money than rappers because it’s more difficult to repair a brain than it is to rot one and teachers would make more than either of them because training someone to use their brain is the most difficult of all.
As your king, I would require that announcers, reality TV celebrities and all other miscellaneous talking heads get paid minimum wage. My reasoning is simple; I’d trust my mechanic to identify a singer on the radio but I’d never let Ryan “Freakin’” Seacrest anywhere near the transmission on my truck, yet Seacrest is paid millions while my mechanic makes a bit less. Not on my watch!
By royal proclamation anyone caught taking a cellphone to the beach, a ballgame, a bar, restaurant or a movie will have their phones confiscated for their own good. If you take your phone with you everywhere you’re an addict and you need help. Trust me, no one wants to see a picture of your dinner … really.
On my day as king I would make common sense the law of the land. Don’t eat anything that wasn’t food 100 years ago; if Mother Nature didn’t put it on the food chain don’t eat it! Don’t take a pill to have sex; erectile dysfunction didn’t exist until someone figured out how to make money from it. Avoid angry bears. Brush your teeth or pop a breath mint from time to time because if we don’t want to see a picture of your dinner, we sure as heck don’t want to smell it either.
My final act as king for a day would be to strictly regulate the wearing of neckties because a good king is concerned with the health of his people and tying a knot around your neck clearly restricts blood flow to the brain. Think about it, congressmen wear ties to work everyday and there hasn’t been a coherent thought emerge from Congress in year. In fact, I’d require politicians, lawyers and salesmen to wear ties so we could avoid them without actually having to speak to them.
It’s almost time to abdicate my throne so I’m going to turn on the football game and send the serving wench for a turkey leg and some ale …. its good to be king!
Rick Seley is an award-winning humor columnist, and he may be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.