Curious about world affairs? Ask Prof. Nollege

As the plot thickens from Syria to Russia to North Korea to tiny Portsmouth, my crack Triple Action News team brings you exclusive, up-to-the-minute satiric analysis of the major issues of our time.

Today we are fortunate to tap the expertise of the widely non-syndicated geopolitical advice columnist Professor Nollege, who has generously agreed to answer a few questions from readers.

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Dear Professor Nollege —

Like many Americans, I am extremely concerned about the ongoing strife in the Middle East. The real question is this: How will the crisis in Syria affect the price of Syrian bread, also widely known as pita bread?

— Pete, Main Street

Dear Pete —

Civil war has thrown the world Syrian bread market into a state of upheaval not seen since the olive oil embargo of the early 1970s.

Syrian bread prices have climbed sharply for the third straight day amid heightening tension between Washington and Damascus and international calls for a boost in output from OPEC (the Organization of Pita Exporting Countries).

Bashar al-Assad — an amateur ophthalmology known for his love of crispy brick-oven pita and his hatred of the Syrian people — inherited the presidency from his father Bashar H.W. al-Assad and now controls as much as 83 percent of the world supply of Syrian bread.

CNN Middle East correspondent Baba Ghanouj characterized U.S.-Syrian relations as “falafel.”

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Dear Professor Nollege —

Hey, I thought Reagan crushed the Russians like 20-some years ago. What’s that Vladimir Putin doing on the news this week?

— Mike, East Kingston

Dear Mike —

He’s just trying to feel important. Just a pathetic, puny little man craving some attention while he pretends to try to make his little buddy in Syria stop gassing his own people. Yanking on the puppet strings of his Syrian underlings while he tries to stick it to America.

Plus, he’s probably got a new book coming out, or a new cologne. Or an instructional DVD on how to persecute gay people.

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Dear Professor Nollege —

Is it safe to travel to Egypt these days? I need to cash in some Nile miles so I figured I’d take the wife and kids over to slide down the Pyramids and shoot some dopey pictures with that giant cat statue. Is the political situation any more stable over there?

— Morty from Madbury

Dear Morty —

We interrupt this normally scheduled foolishness to bring you breaking developments on the ground in Egypt — where Sphinx News is reporting that a surprise political coup has brought about the return to power of one-time pharoah King Tut.

Amid jubilant crowds dancing by the Nile, Mr. Tut — who bears an uncanny resemblance to the comedian Steve Martin — has vowed to reform the country’s pyramid-scheme economy, eliminate crooked deals in smoke-filled tombs and return Egypt to the prosperity of the Bronze Age. Polls reveal that “the ladies love his style” while male constituents respond favorably to unconfirmed reports that he once “ate a crocodile.”

Born in Arizona, he subsequently moved to Babylonia where he achieved fame after joining the Sarcophagus Party and becoming a golden idol, his exploits immortalized in popular hieroglyphics of the day.

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Dear Professor Nollege —

I’m a longtime Portsmouth, resident and have been glad to read that there are 19 candidates running for City Council. What is the ideal number of candidates for a municipality this size?

— Polly, Parrott Ave.

Dear Polly —

Many leading experts suggest democracy works best when the widest possible spectrum of personalities and perspectives is represented on the ballot. (Others point to the 2012 Republican presidential primary and say …; uh, wow!)

And while the current field of candidates appears fairly diverse — a builder, a bartender, multiple Kennedys, an Iraq veteran, the daughter of a U.S. senator and much more — some say more variety is needed to balance the ballot.

As of press time, to my knowledge there were no pro wrestlers, wind farmers or whistleblowers among the candidates. No anthropologists, billionaire industrialists or death row inmates in the mix. And my sources tell me there is not a single Bush in the race.

Now I’m not saying we need a ballot brimming with coal miners, taxidermists and particle physicists to help secure a positive future for Portsmouth. But I do think the meetings would be a lot more interesting if voters elected at least one professional mime and one ventriloquist to the council.

— John Breneman

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