At this time of the year, it’s important to be skeptical when you read. Publications are cranking out hoaxes left and right, and for once people don’t seem to mind when the media lies. In fact, they go bananas for it. When the BBC ran a story about the Swiss spaghetti harvest of 1957, people called in asking how to grow their own noodle trees. 

 

Sports Illustrated strained credulity even further in 1985 when it published an article about Sidd Finch, a baseball-playing Buddhist savant who threw the ball twice as hard as an average player. A week later, their offices were swamped with fan mail clamouring for more about the mysterious Tibetan prodigy.

 

Word would never attempt to deceive its readers like this. While other publications may compromise their journalistic integrity for the sake of cheap buzz, this magazine has higher aims, such as the sale of advertising space. If Word published an article that was intentionally misleading, readers might suspect that its advertisers were also deceitful — perhaps that smiling doctor in the picture was actually a clumsy-thumbed delta bumpkin with a butcher’s delicacy.

 

Don’t worry about any of that. Word is an honest, God-fearing family magazine. It is committed to integrity and truthfulness. While other publications bombard you with outlandish lies, let us reassure you:

 

Everything is going to be OK.

 

Rest Assured

 

You’re going to get a raise at work. Your hard work and positive attitude are going to be recognised. It wasn’t easy to earn the respect and recognition you deserve, but soon you’re finally going to make it. You won’t have to worry about being stuck in an unfulfilling dead-end career anymore.

 

The environment’s going to be fine, too. Things might be getting ugly elsewhere in the region, what with the carcass-choked rivers and unbreathable air and all, but that’s not Vietnam. Eventually they’ll figure something out — remember the Olympics in Beijing? Besides, people drive hybrid cars and turn off the faucets when they brush their teeth now. There’s no catastrophic climate shift staring us in the face, you can count on that.

 

Let’s forget about glaciers and dead polar bears and talk about something that matters — your love life. As it turns out, that’s going to be fine, too. You’re going to find someone who appreciates your quirks and doesn’t mind your faults. Even if circumstances in your lives change swiftly and unexpectedly, your feelings for each other will stay the same. People aren’t essentially alone. There’s nothing in the world stronger than love.

 

See, everything’s fine. Relax a little.

 

A Wonderful World

 

You live in a safe and happy place. The roads have been getting progressively safer for some time now, as motorists learn to drive in a sane and courteous manner. Queues at supermarkets and elevator lobbies are practically Singaporean in their precision. Everyone is punctual and polite, and petty theft is at an all-time low.

 

At this point you’re probably thinking, “My goodness, the world sure is a fantastic place.” Well, it gets even better. That good health you’ve been enjoying recently? As it turns out, you’ve been consuming the exactly-perfect amounts of gluten, carbs, meth and vegetables. Your diet could literally not be improved. Neither could your exercise habits. All signs point to your strength and vigour increasing perpetually.

 

Everything else is going to be wonderful, too. The old people will have the things that old people need, and jerks will stop being mean to animals. You will be late with the rent but the landlord won’t care. Your haircuts will be mostly successful.

 

The drones will stop bombing sick people and children instead of the healthy, slightly older people they were supposed to bomb. The schools will be better and the bartender will learn how to make a goddamn White Russian. You’ll find a flattering pair of jeans. Bad things will stop happening to good people. You’ll finally get a moment to yourself to think for once.

 

Yes, it’s all going to be just fine.

Niko Savvas

Niko Savvas is the online editor at Word. He is biased against your favorite things. Correspond with him via niko@wordvietnam.com, an electronic mail address on the World Wide Web.

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