Thursday, May 21, 2009

The WondroPlex™ Way



[Note: I recall a (near-identical) humor piece printed in The New Yorker at least ten years ago, though I can't provide a reference to it. WondroPlex was written to raise someone's spirits at my Place Of Witless Employment; this should be considered an attempt to recreate the perfection of that article and not a piece of obvious, intentional plagarism. I'm Poor™. Don't sue me.]

YOUR MODEL 6500 WONDRO-PLEX
A MESSAGE FROM TENBOOM INDUSTRIES

Thank you for purchasing TenBoom Industries' new and essentially improved Model 6500 WondroPlex.

You're about to embark on an exciting adventure! We believe the Model 6500 WondroPlex will reduce the complexity of daily life, and become your window into a dynamic, ever-changing world. It will be the best $27.99 you've ever spent -- and that has a TenBoom guarantee !

The Model 6500 WondroPlex is the first device to combine the full functionality of a Personal Data Assistant, cell phone, and music player with a personal computer that has a 2.0 Terrabyte-capacity hard drive -- but there's more!

The Model 6500 WondroPlex includes all the comfort and simplicity of a trained household staff -- scheduling, analysis and entertainment at your fingertips. It's the kind of attention to detail you've grown to expect from much of the TenBoom product line. And -- you almost don't have to do a thing. Just by opening the WondroPlex's packaging, your Model 6500 has automatically turned itself on! So sit back, and relax -- the WondroPlex way!

Before you wake each morning, the Model 6500 WondroPlex is already hard at work, answering your email, sending faxes, ordering dry cleaning, arranging a breakfast menu for up to twenty and shooing your children out of bed and getting them ready for school. When you open your eyes at 7:00, your day has already started -- the Model 6500 WondroPlex already answering calls from your manager, who asks why you didn't appear for early-morning meetings the Model 6500 had booked for 6:00 AM.

By then, the Model 6500 WondroPlex has already cycled five miles on your stationary exercise bike and canceled your subscription to The National Geographic. Your model 6500 has already laid out your clothes, color-coordinated to match the current Terror Alert Level (Hint: Start buying more 'autumn tones'). Your breakfast has already been made, and eaten, by your new Model 6500 WondroPlex. Coffee? Aber natürlich. There's even some for you.

While you make your way to the office, your Model 6500 WondroPlex is dialing through your personal address book, calling your parents, in-laws, closest friends and business associates, and leaving short, inspirational messages or vague threats in a near-perfect simulacrum of Steve Job's voice.

Before you've even gone to lunch, back at home your Model 6500 WondroPlex has picked up your mail, shredded invoices from creditors and mortgage companies, applied for new credit cards (and adding itself as the secondary cardholder), and made seventy-three simultaneous long-distance calls to random numbers in Belize, Burkina Faso, the Iranian Islamic Republic, and 'Disputed Zone', at an average cost of $6.52 per minute. None of the calls last less than an hour. All are charged to your manager's cell phone.

Between 10:08 and 10:41 AM, the Model 6500 WondroPlex falls inexplicably motionless and silent, after which it will reboot, then whistle to itself a series of Ringtones based on "Honky Tonk Woman", as played by Radiohead, The Ramones, and Axel Rose. At 11:14, it will become bored and begin going through the drawers of your bedroom wardrobe.

By midafternoon, your Model 6500 WondroPlex has hacked into databases at the NSA, Department Of Homeland Security and the Defense Intelligence Agency, placed the names of everyone you've ever disliked on five separate terrorist watch lists, downloaded the "Joint National War Plan Of The United States" and burned it to CD, using patented read-write technology no larger than a dime and illegal in nine states.

Before you arrive home, the Model 6500 WondroPlex has sold the War Plan CD to the foreign intelligence service of a country hostile to the United States, accepted payment, and bankwired the proceeds to a numbered Swiss account. A multi-tasking marvel, the Model 6500 WondroPlex will fabricate evidence implicating a person chosen at random from the 'A-L' section of the Muncie, Indiana telephone directory, engage a lawyer for them, negotiate their surrender to the FBI on charges of espionage and high treason, and start the dishwasher.

Then, it's time for dinner! The Model 6500 WondroPlex makes Sweet Potato - Rum Casserole with Medallions of Veal, and (together with three bottles of your most expensive wines) has it delivered to room 217 at the Plaza Hotel in New York City, whether anyone is staying in the room or not.

As you get ready for bed, the Model 6500 WondroPlex is still going strong, busy creating a whole new reality for tomorrow's new day. The Model 6500 WondroPlex is even more persistent than that bunny with the drum -- its batteries are virtually inexhaustible, and are recharged using ordinary table salt , sunlight, and the Full Faith And Credit Of The United States Of America.

And, don't worry: As you know, once its packaging is opened the Model 6500 WondroPlex automatically turns itself on -- and arms a miniaturized, 3.6 Kiloton nuclear device, capable of vaporizing twelve square city blocks in a fraction of a second. Any attempt to turn off the Model 6500 WondroPlex -- or allow its batteries to run down -- will result in immediate detonation, unless the safety override code is entered first.

Safety Override Codes are sold separately by TenBoom Industries for a nominal annual fee. TenBoom Industries Capital Financing can assist in obtaining your Safety Override Loan, which may be amortized over ten years

[Note: Safety Override loans are Adjustable Rate instruments; their interest rate fluctuates daily, and is tied to the value of the currency of the Marshall Islands versus the U.S. Dollar, which (as of this writing) is at 125,000 to 1.]

[Please Note: Under applicable Federal Statute (Title IX, U.S.C. 21 at Sec. 14-d) and pending legislation (SB 2170, The Communication Industries and Small Animal Act), it is expressly forbidden to throw or give away any Model 6500 Wondro-Plex without a Class A Nuclear Materials or Extreme Toxic Substances Disposal permit. Penalties for failure to comply include but are not limited to public tauntings and an unspecified length of incarceration at an undisclosed SuperMax prison location.]

Do not taunt your Model 6500 WondroPlex.

In those states where legal, please enjoy your new Model 6500 WondroPlex! Once you turn it on, we think you'll be inseparable.