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Recession fortune cookies

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New fortune cookie messages have been popping up in Chinese restaurants throughout the United States and several have resulted in complaints, even calls for government action. It’s estimated that the brand of wisdom contained in 1 out of every 20 of the nation’s fortune cookies is actually foreign indoctrination designed to further discourage Americans in these tough economic times.

Widely regarded as a means of propaganda — à la Japan’s Tokyo Rose during WWII — this time well-placed Chinese operatives intending to further break our spirits. These newfound cookie fortunes are the latest not-so subtle hint designed to demoralize a once-thriving American psyche … lost in an economy gone sour.

One example: “You’ll never amount to anything because you’re morbidly obese” caused a woman in Seattle to threaten legal action against P.F. Changs, which distanced itself from responsibility. Other fortunes have been reported as insulting, personal and condescending in nature.

With 42 cents of every federal dollar spent borrowed from China, it was only a matter of time before the country sought a return on its substantial investment, says one Ivy League professor. “You can’t buy a lunch portion of moo shu pork without being reminded of the struggles we face as a nation,” said William Doran, professor of political theory at Princeton University. “It’s come to this,” he said.


In addition to confidence-shaking fortunes, it’s also been suggested that a majority of the lucky numbers contained beneath the words are fake, simply random numbers which hold no bearing in terms of lottery jackpots or the flow of numbers painted on ping pong balls.

A few recent examples found last week at The Happy Dragon Chinese Restaurant in Columbus, Ohio …

OLD: You are entering a time of great promise and overdue rewards.
NEW:You’ll never pay off your credit cards.

OLD: Everything will now come your way.
NEW: Your racist tendencies will land you in hot water.

The owner of The Happy Dragon said he ordered several thousand: “Don’t be afraid to take that big step” but instead received: “You’re a douchebag with no self-confidence.” Generally, customers have been bitter and it’s not just Columbus.

June 24, San Jose, Calif …

OLD: Your sense of humor allows you to glide through these difficult times.
NEW: Your date is a slut. What were you thinking?

July 2, Muncie, Ind …

OLD: The sun will shine through your heart and warm your soul.
NEW: The leaders you’ve elected have mortgaged your future and don’t know what they’re doing.

June 16, Upper Manhattan …

OLD: A lifetime of happiness lies ahead of you.
NEW: That band you were in back in college sucked, it’s no surprise you never got laid.

July 7, Studio City, Calif …

OLD: Your ambitious nature will help you make a name for yourself.
NEW: Is there anything about you that’s even slightly interesting?

July 16, Chicopee, Mass …

OLD: A firm friendship will prove the foundation of your success in life.
NEW: We don’t understand your country’s fascination with Dane Cook. Maybe you’re just stupid.

May 30, Rockford, Ill …

OLD: Your many hidden talents will become obvious to those around you.
NEW: The untimely death of your career coincides with a slowdown in the economy and rising inflation.

June 9, Shreveport, LA …

OLD: The one you love is closer than you think.
NEW: When you wake up tomorrow morning, ask yourself, “what’s the point?”

June 18, Carson City, Nev …

OLD: Good luck is the result of good planning.
NEW: Penis size not so important now, you arrogant round eye.

July 14, Tucumcari, NM …

OLD: Don’t be pushed by your problems, be led by your dreams.
NEW: Stop fighting it, we own you. Submit.

July 14, Kirkland, Wash …

OLD: He who hurries cannot work with dignity.
NEW: Mandarin is a lovely language, we think you’ll enjoy it.

Have you found a fortune cookie that undermines your confidence — consciously or unconsciously? Report it @Place it on Lucky Dan Facebook page. Submissions will be compiled, judged, archived and sent to your representative in Washington, providing you don’t find yourself so discouraged that you can’t get out of bed that day.

>> Follow: @SoapyJohnson on Twitter.

>> Comment: Place it on Lucky Dan on Facebook.

© 2011 – 2013, Soapy Johnson. All rights reserved.

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