The Radish

Warning: the contents of these pages are entirely satirical. These stories should not be taken seriously as they bear a faint resemblance to reality. Unless…

Ban on g-a-y marriage

Des Moines, Iowa — It was a rainy day when Iowa legislature passed House Bill 69, a ban on gay marriage. Gov. Kim Reynolds declared it a monumental day for progress.

The reasoning behind the bill was simple.

“In accordance with the laws of nature and God’s daughter, Kim Reynolds, the state of Iowa recognizes the definition of gay marriage to be a happy marriage … which is clearly unacceptable. We don’t say g-a-y here,” Sen. Homè Phobeec said.

When asked to comment on their rationale for voting in favor of the bill, Sen. Dore Matt said, “I was just scared. I literally saw her stomping the life out of a rainbow flag, and she chucked her wedding ring at me. Apparently, rainbows look too happy. She’s going off the rails.”

Rainbows aren’t the only thing that seem to be upsetting Reynolds. Witnesses saw her arguing with her husband minutes before the ban on happy marriages.

“The only marriage she’s truly unhappy with is her own. She’s just jealous,” Rep. Hae Tur said. “I saw her shred a Republican sign with her teeth; she saw red with some orange and yellow and immediately classified it as ‘too g-a-y’.”

As the sun started to shine after the congressional meeting, a rainbow appeared in the distance, glistening against clear skies. Terrified onlookers saw Reynolds skidding out of the parking lot blaring “Somewhere Over The Rainbow.” They claimed she was weeping while singing along to, “If happy little bluebirds fly beyond the rainbow, why, oh why, can’t I?”

College Board or ChatGPT?

As the weather becomes warmer, instead of being excited for summer, students are reminded of intense study sessions in preparation for AP tests. To weed out the students who don’t thrive, College Board released a statement warning students against the use of AI in their essays, digital portfolios and multiple-choice answers. It seems like Khan Academy, The Organic Chemistry Tutor and Heimler’s History are here to stay.

“Gosh darn it. One of the skills we’ve worked really hard on this year is learning how to use our resources,” AP Seminar teacher Cap Stone said. “The recent updates with ChatGPT are why I had opted for the digital exam for my students in the first place.”

As students logged into College Board later that day to take a practice test, they were met with an unexpected surprise.

The cursor of the prompt types out the following: “How would ChatGPT fare in a debate against a 5th grader who had just discovered Wikipedia? Use evidence from at least three sources (and be careful not to plagiarize) to support your argument. Bonus points if you can convince ChatGPT to grade its own AP exam!”

At the bottom of the letter, in tiny letters, is written: “Produced by OpenAI’s ChatGPT AI language model.”

For more tips and tools on finishing your essays on time and enraging your teacher, refer to pages 22-27 of the WSS.

4/20 Distribution Day

For its April 20 issue, distribution day for West Side Story has taken on a new meaning. Gone are the fresh copies of newspapers and in their place are clumps of grass and fresh mud. Furthermore, the West High lawn has been completely wrecked. Potholes and soil are strewn everywhere and smeared onto the West High sign is a new motto: WEST —  Where Every Substance Thrives. It seems that WSS staffers are now distributing weeds. Students seemed to have differing opinions on the changes.

“Personally, I think it’s kinda … weird. Someone handed me a clump of grass. Dirt got all over me, and the lawn looks like a massive crater. I saw three kids fall into this huge hole in the ground,” Soe Bur ’26 said.

Clem Sea ’23, one of the three victims, spoke out. 

“Man, it came out of nowhere. I was walking my usual shortcut across the field when the ground caved beneath me. Suddenly, I was in a pothole. I had to claw my way out. Now that I think about it, I think it used to be a tree.”

Despite new personal injury lawsuits being filed, WSS stands behind these new changes. The editorial board released this statement: “Weeds are like really cool, man.  We need to go with nature man. Just like vibe, you know? They persist through harsh conditions, which we clearly need if we are going to survive this upcoming finals season.”

Wanted Wikner

At the end of the school day, Michelle Wikner slyly flips the ‘M’ of her first name so her classroom door reads “WW.” The lock clicks. She immediately starts preparing for her experiment. Inside the classroom, beakers and flasks are scattered on every countertop, filled to the brim with bubbling fluorescent liquids. As they start to sizzle, she cackles maniacally, years of work culminating in her final act.

WSS noticed the foul odors and asked chemistry teacher Carolyn Walling what the smell could be. 

“I’m honestly not sure. You never know with Michelle,” Walling said. “She’s been cooking up something for years. Now that she’s almost retired, she’s hoping to go out with a bang.”

Back in the chemistry room, flames lick up to the ceiling, quickly catching onto Wikner’s students’ final papers. The fire alarm goes off, wailing sirens echoing in the empty hallways. The last departing students turn back, shocked as they watch West be consumed by fire. 

“I swear I’ve seen this before on TV,” Heisen Berg ’24 said. “Wikner’s always reminded me of a mad scientist with a secret identity.” 

As the school burns down, horrified eyewitnesses hear a terrible cackle. Police are still formally investigating the cause of the fire. They found traces of suspicious substances in the science hallway; Michelle Wikner is nowhere to be seen.