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Kids' Letters Found in City Recycle Bin
Written by Helen Hamilton   

Every December, area children dream of a jolly red-suited man who grants them  their hearts’ desires. Santa Claus has always been a great favorite in Millbank, even after the Great Flutophone Debacle of 1967. This year, however, the dreams of our youngest residents have been dashed to the ground and then spit upon by cynical and thoughtless Millbank city employees.

Dozens of handwritten letters, many in crayon and embellished with pictures of stick reindeer and pointy pine trees, were found stuffed into a recycling bin in the City Manager’s office on Wednesday. Administrative assistant Samantha Lewis, 32, discovered the crumpled and coffee-stained stash when she fished around in the bin to find some scratch paper. “I was completely shocked and dismayed that this was where the Santa letters ended up. How are they supposed to get to the North Pole from the recycle bin?”

“It’s a darn shame,” said local postmaster Lettie Roe, 39. “The United States Postal Service, while almost superhuman in its capabilities, is powerless in this regard. There’s no way the letters will get to Santa in time now. We’ll just have to cancel Christmas.”

Local reactions ranged from indignation to outrage back to mild annoyance. “They said the letters would get to Santa Claus. The big mailbox said ‘To the North Pole’ on it. I don’t see how it could get much clearer than that,” said Sylvia Trent, 30. “My kids took a lot of care with their letters, and how am I supposed to explain to them that they didn’t make it to Santa? Now I’m going to have to return all those presents and throw out all the cookies I made.”

“There’s no question that this is going to have a negative effect come election time,” proposed resident pundit H.P. Bartlett. “Christmas is big business at local shops such as Lotsa Value Hardware and Super Grocery Mart. Residents demanding refunds for holiday merchandise may cause our local economy to go into a peppermint-scented tailspin. Expect riots in the street, trampled tinsel and fruitcake thrown through windows.”

Despite the dismal predictions from people such as Bartlett, some Millbank citizens are showing the heroic resilience that makes our town a place to live. “Next year, I’ll just text Santa Claus,” said Jilly Trent, 9.

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Neil Gruber's Weird Christmas
Written by Neil Gruber   

MILLBANK – What are some words to describe this time of year? Joyful, festive, merry…WEIRD? My friends, in this article, I will delve into the true mysterious and unknown nature of the holiday season. But, I CAUTION YOU, this strangeness is not to be taken lightly, like a cookie with milk. I advise anyone who is young, old, pregnant, lactose intolerant, has a heart condition, is subject to seizures or melancholy, or is sensitive to external stimulation, NOT TO READ ANY FURTHER. Okay, if you’re still reading, I am not responsible for what may befall you hereafter. You are taking your holly jolly life into your own hands.

Think about it – do we put lights on houses and trees for the delight in a merely decorative impulse, or is it to GUIDE EXTRATERRESTRIALS TO THEIR LANDING SITES? If your neighbor is one of those who covers every surface with lights, you should ask him which alien race has implanted itself into his body and whether it comes in peace.

I once saw a Santa outside of Lotsa Value Hardware who HAD A FAKE BEARD – WHAT WAS HE HIDING?

There was sugar cookie from the Koffee Klatch’s bakery counter with exactly 666 sprinkles.  Is this Christmas confection being used to summon one of the MINOR DEMONS to help with holiday rush of pie-baking?

Many years ago during the war with the Maccabees, the Jewish people thought they would run out of oil for their lamps . But the oil seemed to replenish itself for eight more nights, and thus we celebrate the holiday of Hanukkah.

That’s great and all, BUT WHO WAS REPLENISHING THE OIL? I have evidence that a certain person from the future was able to go back in time to make sure the oil did not run out. If you want to find out who, just send a self-addressed, stamped envelope care of this newspaper. I will write the answer in code and send it back to you. If you are worthy, you will be able to solve the code to learn the truth.

Wreaths might seem like a cheerful piece of winter greenery, but they are all portals for astral spirits to project themselves through. ESPECIALLY THIS ONE… wreath

The shortest day of the 2014 is Sunday, December 21. Weirdness flourishes in extended periods of darkness: invasion by the shadow people, out of body experiences and peace on earth. My advice to you is to ward these forces off with some Druid chants, animal sacrifice and lots of fudge.

Egg nog. NEED I SAY MORE?

If you want to learn more and be aware of the true weirdness of the holiday, I invite you to come to my SPECIAL INFORMATIONAL MEETING IN THE SECRET GROVE at 2 pm on Tuesday, December 16th.  OR, YOU CAN FOLLOW ME ON PINTEREST!

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Drug Bust Mars Festival Reputation
Written by Helen Hamilton   

MILLBANK – Residents were stunned this Friday to learn of the criminal activities occurring right under their noses during the annual Taste of Millbank food festival. Specifically, the crimes were happening on their lips, which are indeed anatomically located under noses. Millbank police confiscated eight boxes of kale lip balm from Water River Organic Beauty’s festival booth.

“It’s true, I have never before craved a lip balm quite so much as I craved this kale lip balm from Water River Organic Beauty, and it seemed local and sustainable, so I never dreamed that I was becoming a drug addict,” admits local resident Sharon Dale. “I guess I should have suspected something was off when I began to see panda bears in Ottoman Park, but I like pandas and was hoping there would be a panda show of some sort.”

“To be honest,” says fellow lip balm enthusiast Samantha Lewis, “I didn’t even know what that stuff was until just five minutes ago, but it sure was great. I know we’re not supposed to use it anymore, but I would pretty much kill to get my hands on another tube. You don’t happen to know where I can get it, do you?”

Dr. Arielle Hartwood, director of the Tri-City Rehabilitation Facility, has heard these sorts of sentiments before. “Addicts never know what depths they’ve sunk to until the drug in question is eliminated from their lives. Once that happens, it is important to beat down the addict and trigger intense feelings of guilt and regret so that they never want to touch the substance again. The best thing Millbank can do for these lip balm losers is lock them in a dark basement until their lips, and they, totally dry out.”

Water River Organic Beauty spokesperson, Olive Pearson, who was manning the festival booth during the festival, has been taken into custody by Millbank police. She had no comment, but the Water River Organic Beauty company issued a statement, “The ingredients in our earth-friendly line of natural cosmetics are things one would find in their own kitchen and bathroom cupboards – beeswax, kale, almond oil and honey. We do not put any dangerous or addictive substance in our lip balm.”

Dr. Hartwood replies, “I can find Dran-O in my cupboard, but that doesn’t mean it belongs in something I rub on my face.

Festival organizers are distraught at this blow to what had been a peaceful Taste of Millbank. “Thank goodness we still have the butterscotch pudding,” says beleaguered festival chair Emma Bartlett. “Life wouldn’t be worth living right now without the pudding.”

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Taste of Millbank Suffers No Disaster Yet
Written by Helen Hamilton   

MILLBANK – Millbank’s biggest and most beleaguered festival has surprised residents and visitors alike by running relatively smoothly this week. Only two people have been treated for injuries since last Friday night when the festival opened, and there have been a smaller number of arrests than usual. Police Chief Howard told The Millbank Daily-Weekly, “We had a little rain earlier in the week and have had to perform a little crowd management for those standing in line for the traditional butterscotch pudding, but no tear gas, rubber bullets or riot gear. This week has been quite the breath of fresh air.”

Best of all, says local food critic Wayne Wayling, “No one has yet been sent to the emergency room for salmonella or E.coli. Really, one couldn’t ask for a nicer festival; The lack of vomiting and explosive diarrhea just really shows Millbank’s town spirit to its best advantage.”

In the past, pudding shortages, raucous hooligans and tensions between rival eateries have imperiled Taste of Millbank, which is traditionally held the third week of August. “All that heat, the crowds, the pressure of being compared to Downhill Moderate Senior Living’s exquisite butterscotch pudding, it’s a recipe for a disastrous food festival, says Wayling. “It’s also a recipe for amoebic dysentery.”

The visitors to Taste of Millbank have uniformly praised the offerings so far. “The butterscotch pudding is sublime – so sweet and creamy,” says Samantha Lewis, 36. “I also tried something from another booth, some sort of sticky candy in a tube. That was pretty good as well. Actually, if you'll excuse me, I might just go and get another one of those.”

The booth in question, Water River Organic Beauty, was handing out free cruelty-free lip balms to anyone who stopped at the booth. “We have natural scents such as pine, musk and kale.” Upon further questioning, the unnamed source said that the kale lip balm was particularly popular, so popular that people would come back for for more multiple times in a day. “Folks in Millbank must have really chapped lips,” said company spokesperson Jen Olsen.

Hopes are running high that this year’s Taste of Millbank will end on a peaceful and satisfied note. “We might have finally gotten it right this time,” hopes Emma Bartlett, one of the festival organizers. “I guess you can say I’d bet a dish of butterscotch pudding on it,” she added, before putting another coat of kale lip balm around her mouth.

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New Local Currency Spurs Commerce, Confusion
Written by Helen Hamilton   

MillbuckMILLBANK – In an effort to encourage businesses at local shops, restaurants and services, the Millbank Boosters Club has begun to issue “Millbucks” to town residents. “We feel that this is a fun way to support our friends and neighbors who run businesses in this town,” explains Howard Dale Jr. “When you want to buy a coffee and Danish at the Koffee Klatch or a new hammer at Lotsa Value Hardware, just pay with ‘Millbucks’ and show your appreciation for Millbank’s business community.”

At this time, according to reports, neither of those businesses have been approached about accepting Millbank’s new currency. “You can’t just come in here and give me a slip of colorful paper and expect that you get breakfast,” explains Sergio Iturribide, 46, current owner of the Koffee Klatch. “How would they like it, if I just grabbed a gum wrapper off the street and tried to pay my rent or buy shoes for my kids? That’s not what America is all about.”

Some confusion has arisen about the proper use of Millbucks this week. “The other day, Fern Goodbrush tried to stuff some of that funny money into the credit card reader at Pump #5,” recounts Mervin Hoyt, 51, owner and manager of GasCo Gas Mart. “The thing is still broken.” According to Millbank businesses, other problems associated with Millbucks include residents trying to use Millbucks in other towns, and residents trying to use Monopoly money or other toy money instead of Millbucks.

Some residents have complained that Millbucks come in excessively large denominations. “When would I ever spend 500 quadrillion bucks on a hamburger in this town? And the smallest bill is 1 billion dollars. It’s impossible to get change,” says Samantha Lewis, 37. “And, really, who can take money that looks like that seriously? Real money should at least have some arcane Masonic symbols or stern patriarch staring on it.”

“This is the beginning of our Millbucks program,” admits Howard Dale Jr. “and we still have some kinks to work out. But once we do, both civic pride and the convenience of using Millbucks will put a lot of these concerns to rest. Millbucks send the message that Millbank is a fabulous place to do business.”

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Today in Millbank History

December 20, 1964

Marie Fenword wins the Tri-City Christmas Cookie competition with her notorious Bourbon Balls. The award ceremony has to be postponed until the judges dry out a little.

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Millbank Crime Watch

Monday, 01 December 2014

6:02 a.m. - A resident on Fourth Avenue reported that two houses on the street were not displaying Christmas lights. The resident was informed that citizens are only punished if they do not display Christmas lights before December 5. The exception is people with a written religious exemption. Religious exemptions do not need to display lights until December 8.


Thursday, 04 December 2014

7:42 p.m. - A woman reported extreme loneliness on Divan Street.


Tuesday, 09 December 2014

9:14 p.m. - A woman on Chaise Street requested an officer stay at her home and make sure her teenaged son didn't get into the medicine cabinet.


Monday, 15 December 2014

5:01 p.m. - A man on Main Street felt threatened by a mail-order catalog.


Wednesday, 17 December 2014

4:12 p.m. - Three youths in Ottoman Park were reportedly calling other children "Fatso" and "Stupidhead." The youths were gone before officers arrived, but police will continue to investigate.


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