The Mayor of New York, Michael Bloomberg, has called for citizens to panic in expectation of the arrival of Hurricane Irene in the next few hours.
In a televised statement to the public today, in which he was clearly shaking, the Mayor said that New York had seen many tragedies over the years - from being attacked by a giant marshmallow man to being ripped apart by a rampaging Godzilla ripoff. But now, he claimed, strong winds of up to 80mph threatened to do what those cinematic monsters could not manage, and destroy the entire city.
He yelped, "We urge everyone to panic! Help!" before leaping into the arms of his chief advisor, Sally.
Irene is a category 1 hurricane, putting it in the same league as the long forgotten Hurricane Dave which hit New York in 2006 and hurt nobody. The system of hurricane categories measures a storm in terms of comparison to a number of flatulent hamsters. A category 1 hurricane is equivalent to one farting rodent.
One upside of the hurricane is that it is likely to wipe out "Jersey Shore" before it reaches New York.