P1 Humor Corner: Alerts to threats in 2011 Europe

Because of the 10-year anniversary of 9/11, I wasn’t intending to do any humor stuff this month. I have every expectation that I will shed an indeterminate number of pounds through my tear ducts as I visit with police officers and firefighters in New York City this weekend, and well, as I was planning out the editorial content for these next few days, “humor” just didn’t feel like the “right” thing to do.

Then I got an email from my aunt in Florida that had me roaring with laughter, and I immediately remembered how therapeutic a handful of comedians’ terrorism-related routines were for the American people in the weeks that followed those horrendous attacks.

According to my aunt’s email, this was written by John Cleese — “a British writer, actor, and tall person” — although when I did some checking around on the Internet I was not able to independently verify Cleese as the original author. Nonetheless, it’s hilarious, so here you have it...

The English are feeling the pinch in relation to recent events in Libya and have therefore raised their security level from “Miffed” to “Peeved.” Soon, though, security levels may be raised yet again to “Irritated” or even “A Bit Cross.” The English have not been “A Bit Cross” since the blitz in 1940 when tea supplies nearly ran out. Terrorists have been re-categorized from “Tiresome” to “A Bloody Nuisance.” The last time the British issued a “Bloody Nuisance” warning level was in 1588, when threatened by the Spanish Armada.

The Scots have raised their threat level from “Pissed Off” to “Let’s get the Bastards.” They don’t have any other levels. This is the reason they have been used on the front line of the British army for the last 300 years.

The French government announced yesterday that it has raised its terror alert level from “Run” to “Hide.” The only two higher levels in France are “Collaborate” and “Surrender.” The rise was precipitated by a recent fire that destroyed France’s white flag factory, effectively paralyzing the country’s military capability.

Italy has increased the alert level from “Shout Loudly and Excitedly” to “Elaborate Military Posturing.” Two more levels remain: “Ineffective Combat Operations” and “Change Sides.”

The Germans have increased their alert state from “Disdainful Arrogance” to “Dress in Uniform and Sing Marching Songs.” They also have two higher levels: “Invade a Neighbour” and “Lose.”

Belgians, on the other hand, are all on holiday as usual. The only threat they are worried about is NATO pulling out of Brussels.

The Spanish are all excited to see their new submarines ready to deploy. These beautifully designed subs have glass bottoms so the new Spanish navy can get a really good look at the old Spanish navy.

Australia, meanwhile, has raised its security level from “No Worries” to “She’ll Be Alright, Mate.” Two more escalation levels remain: “Crikey! I Think We’ll Need to Cancel the Barbie This Weekend!” and “The Barbie is Cancelled.” So far no situation has ever warranted use of the final escalation level.

I’ll periodically post new humor content in the secure, LEOs-only section of the website — these humor pieces are scheduled to appear on the first Wednesday of every month — so check back regularly for new stuff. Meanwhile, if you hear a good one or have a funny story to share from your shift, send me an email — we’re all perfectly willing to have a belly laugh at your expense!

About the author

Doug Wyllie is Editor in Chief of PoliceOne, responsible for setting the editorial direction of the website and managing the planned editorial features by our roster of expert writers. An award-winning columnist — he is the 2014 Western Publishing Association "Maggie Award" winner in the category of Best Regularly Featured Digital Edition Column — Doug has authored more than 900 feature articles and tactical tips on a wide range of topics and trends that affect the law enforcement community. Doug is a member of International Law Enforcement Educators and Trainers Association (ILEETA), an Associate Member of the California Peace Officers' Association (CPOA), and a member of the Public Safety Writers Association (PSWA). Doug is active in his support for the law enforcement community, contributing his time and talents toward police-related charitable events as well as participating in force-on-force training, search-and-rescue training, and other scenario-based training designed to prepare cops for the fight they face every day on the street.

Read more articles by PoliceOne Editor in Chief Doug Wyllie by clicking here.

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  2. Terrorism Prevention and Response
  3. Patrol Issues
  4. Police Humor

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