Chicago’s major newspapers, the Tribune and the Sun-Times, are battling to see which paper can appear the most provincial in its coverage of the Bears’ upcoming appearance in Super Bowl XLI.
Writers and editors are frantically working to create trite headlines and shallow stories about anything related to the Bears, while struggling to avoid anything that might be substantive news.
“It’s a daily challenge,” said Sun-Times Editor Michael Cooke. “We have to forget that we’re in the third-largest city in the country and the home to many Fortune 500 companies. Instead, we put professionalism aside and pretend we’re in a small hamlet cheering on our local high school team.”
Cooke said the pressure began within days of the Bears’ clinching their first Super Bowl trip in 21 years. “I almost had to use the President’s State of the Union Address on the front page, but then an idiot woman offered to swap advertising space on her pregnant belly for Super Bowl tickets. We ran her on page one and dumped Bush–she saved us.”
Tribune Editor Ann Marie Lipinski said she can relate to the stress Cooke is feeling.
“The Tribune is one of the 10 largest papers in the country, but we refuse to let that force us into serious journalism. We’re lucky it’s been a slow news cycle. Yeah, there’s civil war in Iraq, but readers are more interested in the moron fan who got stiffed on Super Bowl tickets by a Bears’ player.”
Cooke and Lipinski both agreed that the level of journalistic inanity would increase as the date of the big game gets closer.
“We’re putting the final touches on a three-part story analyzing the favorite hot dog toppings of the entire Bears team,” Lipinski said. “This one has ‘Pulitzer’ written all over it.”