All the news that is fit to make up…

Today’s Daily Create Challenge was writing something by remixing content from different sources:

Find 3 news stories. Use words from second paragraph of each, make 3 stanzas of 3 lines, <60 characters per line.

So find 3 different news stories, use only words or phrases from the second paragraph, and remix them into some sort of 9 line poem. I decided to use “news” (air quotes) from tabloids— because they are fun. I found online versions of The National Enquirer, The Weekly World News, and the Daily Mail.

I thought I was kind of random in my choices, but as it turns out, there was violent acts in all three:

  1. Frozen Wooly Mammoth (Weekly World News) 2nd paragraph:
    The juvenile mammoth was found entombed in Siberian ice near the shores of the Arctic Ocean and shows signs of being cut open by ancient people.
  2. Odom Smash (National Enquirer) 2nd paragraph:
    The usually chill gentle giant turned hostile with photogs in Los Angeles yesterday as he took his frustration out on automobiles and camera equipment as a startling new report emerged claiming that he cheated on Khloe.
  3. “˜It was a miracle that I survived’: Canadian teen suffers “˜huge rips’ in her body after trying to KISS a lion (Daily Mail)
    Lauren Fagen, 18, was volunteering at the Moholoholo Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre when she leaned in to kiss the beast’s fur.

So with some cutting and posting, I wove this into a poem that portends the violence that the melting of the polar ice caps might generate given the climate and modd changes that go with that:

Violent Effects of Melting The Ice Caps

A startling new report emerged.
Lauren Fagen, 18, was volunteering
near the shores of the Arctic Ocean

The juvenile mammoth was found
with photogs yesterday
volunteering at the Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre.

The usually chill gentle giant turned hostile.
She leaned in to kiss the beast’s fur
and shows signs of being cut open.

Poor Lauren Gana, went to volunteer, and those photographers just angered the young mammoth beast, who really did not want to be kissed.

Ahhh, poetry.

I’ve always had a soft spot for tabloids, though i cannot say I ever did more than guffaw at the headlines. Back in 1988-1989 as a grad student in the Arizona State University Geology department, I put those new Mac Pluses to work, using MacPaint and some other crude layout program I forget to produce a (what I though was) funny club news letter in the form of a tabloid, the “Weakly World News”:

(click image for full size)

(click image for full size)

I have them on floppy disk in an unreadable format, but I do have a folder of rare, collectable paper prints, suitable for wrapping fish or lining bird cages.

Spoof headlines there include “Exclusive Photos of Soviet Space Aliens” (crude paint graphic with head photos of Geology Profs; “Geology Prof Proves George Bush is an Ostracod”; and “Elvis Spotted in Isotope Lab” (The KIng Tries To Pass Off as Lost Undergrad” — I had all kinds of mock stories based on what was happening around the department.

Was a smartass, still am!

So when are you going to get of your polar ice cap and do some Daily Creates? Although we are 11 days in, there’s plenty to do (or go back and do).

Profile Picture for Alan Levine aka CogDog
An early 90s builder of the web and blogging Alan Levine barks at on web storytelling (#ds106 #4life), photography, bending WordPress, and serendipity in the infinite internet river. He thinks it's weird to write about himself in the third person.


  1. Alan,

    I couldn’t help noticing how you managed to do grad school backwards in -9 years! Did you have a Time Turner like Hermione? Or were you watching the rocks get younger to determine the age of the earth?

    Cool zines you produced.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *