Just last night, as I was settling in for a night of wholesome FOX programming, I received a phone call. The voice on the other end was foreign to me, but sounded urgent. I listened carefully as they delivered to me the shocking news.
I was a terrorist. Or at least I looked like one.
Frightened, telephone shaking in my hand, I shouted “Who is this?” “Who are you working for?!” But there was nothing but silence on the other end. I slowly hung the phone up and thought to myself for a long amount of time. “How could I be a terrorist?” I thought to myself. “When did this happen? Last week? I didn’t even leave the house last week!” I juggled all the possibilities around in my head for hours. How could I have become a terrorist without even knowing it?
Immediately, I became defensive. Surely, this was a joke. A cruel joke. It’s hard to accept such a terrible accusation when you spend most of your days playing with cats and doing crossword puzzles. It seemed irrational.
But nevertheless, I tried to get to the bottom of it. So I went online and did a search for “terrorists”. Within seconds, my computer was red-flagged by the US Government, and my savings and checking accounts were instantly terminated. They were on to me, and I knew it. Eventually, I managed to get some information on terrorists.
Now, I don’t even want to get into all the many reasons why I could NOT be a terrorist (afraid of guns, can’t swim, allergies, etc.). I suspect that even the least capable terrorist can walk to the mailbox without getting an ear infection. It was becoming clear that I was not the terrorist they claimed I was, and I was involved in a case of mistaken identity.
But I remembered that they never really said that I “was” a terrorist. There was just suspicion of it because of the way I looked. Racial profiling has been a big deal since September 11, and I fully understood that some people were keeping their eyes open for the bad guys. “I must really look like a terrorist”, I said to myself. So again, I went online and did a search for “terrorist pictures”.
This is a picture of one of the more recently captured terrorists:
And here is a picture of me taken this previous Thanksgiving:
Almost instantly, I could spot some differences in our appearances. First off, the amount of hair visible above the neck of his t-shirt is more hair than I have on my entire body. Secondly, I would never let someone take a picture of me with my hair like that. I do my best to keep it well-groomed and straight. Concerning the beard, Celia would never let me out of the house with a growth like that. She would mumble something about me looking like a caveman, and I would saunter up the stairs to charge the electric razor, no questions asked.
Despite all the damning evidence supporting my claim of not being a terrorist, I still tried to understand the reasons for my accusal. I do wear glasses I don’t need, and I do dye my hair black, so someone might think I’m disguising myself for an upcoming bombing. Still, I thought those reasons alone were paper-thin, and certainly not enough to be locked up for suspicion of terrorism.
I was just about to close the case on my freedom, and declare it a stunning victory. Just then, a UPS man came to my door with a slender envelope. Slowly, I opened it up, and was horrified by what I saw.
The final nail in the coffin. They had found me out. How anyone could have snapped a picture of me while I was undercover will always be a mystery to me. My hearing is on Thursday, and I’m looking at 20 to life.
Pray for me.