My fellow Americans: Every year at this time—despite my editor's heavy sighs of exasperation—I shove aside my usual nattering about television to expound on a subject you obviously don't give two donkey plops about: PATRIOTISM!! (Warning: You're about to find yourself on the business end of a stern lecture. It's best if you just sit there attentively and take it, rather than interrupting with back sass. Seriously, that behavior will just extend my lecture by at least two hours—so shut your stupid mouth, glue your eyes on me, and LISTEN.)

This is probably not a shock, but your "patriotism score" is at an all-time LOW, therefore forcing me to give you a grade of "UNSATISFACTORY." In comparison, my patriotism score is through the roof (as usual), which is why I'm awarding myself a grade of "A+++++ Awesomely Excellent!" Why is your score so low? THREE REASONS: (1) You are lazy and ungrateful. (2) You hate America and all she stands for. (3) You didn't eat enough breakfast, and now you're suffering from low blood sugar. Wait... there's a fourth reason! YOU'VE LOST TOUCH WITH THE PATRIOT INSIDE.

Remember your youth? When you recited the Pledge of Allegiance every day, waved flags on the Fourth of July, and were told at every conceivable opportunity that America kicks all kinds of ass? This message may have been sort of inaccurate—but that's beside the point! Remember this phrase, my friends, because it is the only true thing that you'll ever hear in your life: PERCEPTION IS REALITY. You perceived that America was the ass-kickingest country in the world, and the Soviet Union sucked balls, and therefore America WAS the ass-kickingest country in the world (upon whose balls the Soviet Union tenderly sucked). However, now your perception is that WE are the ones who suck balls—thanks almost entirely to idiot warmongering Republicans, as well as sad-sack do-nothing Democrats—and that's an entirely incorrect perception. (That is, unless you enjoy sucking the occasional ball, which is certainly your right as an American!)

THEREFORE! If perception is indeed reality, you need to snap out of your anti-American funk and get some good old-fashioned jingoistic pro-USA brainwashing up in that noggin of yours! AND I'M HERE TO PROVIDE JUST THAT! Since you probably haven't repeated the Pledge of Allegiance since you turned 13 and started smoking pot and piercing your genitals, I'm forced to bombard you with patriotic imagery until your brain returns to its original, pre-cynical, America-drooling state. Ready? Okay... just relax... make your mind a blank slate... AND LET'S DO THIS!

America! Red, white, and blue! Fireworks! ATVs! The perceived existence of God! A 40-ounce bottle of malt liquor! John Wayne! Giving the finger to the British! Rodeos! Scalping Nazis! Majestic watercolor paintings of bald eagles! Terry-cloth tube tops! Uncle Sam pointing at things! Internet porn! Hot dogs! Laughing at Canada! Donkeys high-diving into pools! And the Statue of Liberty... costume that unemployed people wear when they're standing on the side of the road and waving signs advertising mattress company liquidation sales.

Phew. You're welcome, America. Everybody else? Suck a ball. recommended recommended