My Tea Party Candidacy

When the school year began six months ago, I would never have considered running for Class Gerbil Monitor. I was just an average third grader with average worries about tetherball, book reports, and Lunchables. What did I care about the insider deals and backroom horse-trading  of professional Gerbil Monitor politics? But like many of you, I have been increasingly concerned by the direction our classroom is taking under the rule of Tommy Masters. The Stevenson Elementary we used to know is under attack by Tommy and his radical Marxist cronies. I'm looking at you, Jenny Whitman. Or should I call you Eva Braun?

Comrade Masters is out to ruin this classroom for all third graders to come. What will we write in the time capsule we leave for the third grade class of 2020? Will we ask them if they have flying cars? If robots do their chores for them? I think not. The only things we can rationally inquire about will be  the quality of their reeducation-camp gruel and whether or not they speak Russian. And so, even though I am an outsider, I feel I must announce my intentions to run for Class Gerbil Monitor against Tommy and his Socio-Fascist gerbil-monitoring cabal.

In an unconscionable breach of the classroom constitution we signed in magic marker so many months ago, Tommy has brazenly increased the power and scope of his position in a manner not seen since the Reichstag burned in 1933. Now we are all forced to shoulder the burden of classroom gerbil care, donating 75 cents of our hard-earned allowances every week to the gerbil food fund. Sure, that may be no big deal to Kommandant Masters, with his enormous split level home, Nintendo Wii, and opulent birthday parties at LazerZone, but I'm an ordinary third grader. I live in a duplex. I ride the bus. I have my parties at a bowling alley. And to me, 75 cents is the difference between a pack of Fun Dip or nothing.

Our situation may be grim, but let us not lose hope. I say we still have a chance. We don't have to let Kaiser Masters and his pack of elitist, fifth-grade-reading-level pinkos push us around. So please, stand with me this lunch period and vote for your freedom and the freedom of the humble, God-fearing, paste-eating third graders who will follow us. With your heads down on your desks and your arms high in the air, vote for the rights of the common kid against the threat of Stalinist-Nazi gerbil oppression!

 Michael Lacher is a writer, designer, and actor in Chicago. He is the creator of and an occasional contributor to McSweeney's.

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