Disclaimer: Monica Cyrino submitted this satire to the Daily Lobo. She is not a staff member. Opinions expressed solely reflect the views of the author and do not reflect the opinions of Lobo employees.
*I have taught Greek Mythology at UNM for 20 years. Recently in my research, I uncovered a long-lost tale that may be of interest to your readers. Thank you for allowing me to share it with you.
-Professor Monica S. Cyrino *
High atop the sacred snow-covered mountain of FantaSe sat Richardsonius, God of Evil, glowering in bitter disgust. Beneath him spread the beautiful desert land of NeaMexiopolis, filled with shiny happy people. Richardsonius was enraged that the people of NeaMexiopolis did not support him in his failed quest to be elected Lord of Everything, so he decided to curse them. He created a government unsurpassed in corruption, incompetence and cronyism. To punish the University of NeaMexiopolis, he even appointed a Board of Rejects, hideous dim-witted monsters that had been expelled from the womb of Mother Earth and made to dwell in law firms and car dealerships.
“Go forth, Board of Rejects,” howled Richardsonius. “Do the greatest harm you can to the people of NeaMexiopolis!”
The Board of Rejects, corrupt, incompetent cronies all, obeyed their heinous master. They searched far and wide until they found the evil old king Schmidlius, who had made barren and gloomy the once-lovely land of Ochlohomia. And lo! A cry of pure joy went up throughout Ochlohomia when the mean old Schmidlius left: The grass grew and the sun shone after years of desolate darkness. The Board of Rejects made Schmidlius the King of the University of NeaMexiopolis, though he was past his prime and completely lacking in leadership skills.
Evil King Schmidlius immediately set about making his administration the most corrupt, incompetent and cronyist in the history of NeaMexiopolis. First, he raided the treasuries. A vain and greedy man, Schmidlius refurbished his palace in precious marble and silver and flat-screen TVs at a cost of millions to the people: It is said he even installed a double-wide commode in his office for his own personal use. Next, because he was old and petty and threatened by anyone younger and more vigorous than he, Schmidlius exiled all the noble ministers and hale deans, replacing them with weak, foolish sycophants, while doubling their number and tripling their salaries. So pathetic were these puny new minions, it is said they would weep for terror in Schmidlius’ presence.
Then, after hugely increasing his own staff of weak, jabbering yes-men and yes-women, Evil King Schmidlius froze hiring throughout the University, so that no teachers, advisers or librarians could be employed. Although Schmidlius promised to raise graduation rates, it was nothing more than a cruel joke: Without classes, advising and books, how could the students finish their degrees? Graduation rates plummeted to the depths of Hades, matched only by the low morale of the people, who were outraged, humiliated and saddened to see the ravaging of their fair University. Evil King Schmidlius sat back on his double-wide commode and was pleased with the devastation he had wrought.
“Now they see the authority here is mine alone,” he chortled. “Just like in Ochlohomia.”
But Evil King Schmidlius was not finished with his brutal rampage. To the south lay the lush valley of Lobolandia, where the young heroes played on green fields all day, a place well known as “Kalligynaika,” or “Land of Pretty Young Receptionists.” As the new overseer of Lobolandia, Schmidlius appointed a Vice King named Krebon, a man whose enormous venality was matched only by his utter lack of knowledge, eloquence or leadership ability. Clearly, Schmidlius wished to destroy Lobolandia by putting in charge a man so corrupt, so unqualified and so irresponsible that soon all the heroes would flee the green fields and Lobolandia would no longer be able to recruit any top heroes at all.
Krebon brought only trouble to Lobolandia, as he set about ruining the most beloved and heroic brand name in all of NeaMexiopolis. For deep in the well-appointed coaching caves, there lived a fierce, bearded dragon called the Lockster, Scourge of Heroes. The Lockster had already forced the heroes to leave their jerseys sloppily untucked, and to take off their helmets at totally inappropriate times during their games: Such a striking lack of discipline caused the heroes to go winless for nearly an entire season. “Alas!” lamented the denizens of Lobolandia. “Even the Rockster never went 1 and 10!” Many a brave hero had tried to conquer the Lockster, but the dragon had supernatural fighting powers: He would flail his arms and a bloody punch would magically land, he would lightly grab a collar and his adversary would end up choked and bruised. “The Lockster cannot be tamed,” cried the young hero Geraldus, nursing his bleeding face. Indeed, it was said the Lockster feared only one kind of creature: a 40-something Latina. Oh, if only one could be found in the kingdom of NeaMexiopolis!
But Evil King Schmidlius had another nefarious strategy. Soon the Season of Heroes would be over, and he planned to rid the land of both the ferocious Lockster and the hapless Krebon by burying them in millions of gold coins from the people’s near-empty treasury … [papyrus breaks off here]