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Man thought to be missing found not dead

Local police have found a man they initially believed had been kidnapped. It seems Duluth Reader columnist Paul Ryan, age 35, was living his life normally the entire time. He just went unnoticed because he’s not very interesting.

Ryan was initially reported missing by his parents when he didn’t answer his phone. His mother had just watched a particularly spooky episode of “Monk” in which an elderly woman is kidnapped. The intense excitement of the episode sent her into hysterics, leading her to phone the police about her son.

A knock on Ryan’s door from officers went unanswered, as did several phone calls. Co-workers told police they hadn’t recalled seeing him in months, and the people Ryan claimed were his friends had no recollection of such an agreement.

“I’m not his friend,” said Matt Fortner, a man who once accidentally invited Ryan to a party at his home. “I’m friends with him on Facebook, but I’m not his friend. I met him once through a buddy of mine, so I added him for networking reasons. When I sent the party invite to my friend list, I didn’t figure someone who barely knew me would show up. My wife was eating sliced cantaloupe, and Paul remarked to her how the insides of cantaloupes look like vaginas. He had never met her before. That was the first thing he said to her. Then he walked away and never said another word to anyone for the rest of the evening. What a creepy little weirdo.”

Gift ideas for your mail carrier

Your mail carrier probably hates you. It’s nothing personal. You’re just a bit of a putz. Your walkways are unshoveled, your dogs are total assholes, and the magazines you subscribe to aren’t very interesting to read on their lunch breaks. Sports Illustrated? Really? You know they have a website where you can read those articles two weeks earlier, right?

Some mail carriers walk up to 15 miles each day to deliver all those unwanted advertisements to your home. Getting them a Christmas gift is a great way to keep your packages safe and provide a little warmth to a person who will have two or three hernia operations by the time they’re 60 years old. In this way, mail carriers are a lot like your grandpa, except your grandpa only smells funny when he drinks.

If you bribe your mail carrier with one of the great gifts listed below, and they still leave those little package notification slips in your mailbox without knocking on your door, then next year you can bake them cookies with poop in them.

Resolutions are for people who admit to having flaws

I’m a very fortunate person, because I’m perfect. Everything I do is correct, and I have no known flaws or shortcomings. I’m at least four steps above the rest of you filthy animals. Since it’s impossible for me to improve myself further, I don’t make New Year’s resolutions. Instead, I list a bunch of terrible things I did last year that I really enjoyed, and then make pledges to do them again.

For instance, I live on the fourth floor of my apartment building, and I’ve always been too lazy to walk down the stairs and put my garbage in the dumpster. To save time, I throw my garbage bags off the fourth floor fire escape. Roughly 50 percent of the time, the bags fall into the dumpster. The other half of the time, a rogue crosswind or slight intoxication on my part causes the bags to fall into the street. I have never once cleaned it up. I plan to continue this next year, as it’s fun and vaguely reminds me of the Plinko game from The Price is Right.

Last year, I also called my mom on Mother’s Day and made a series of obnoxious noises into the phone until she became annoyed and threatened to hang up. I found that experience very enjoyable, and pledge to repeat it again this year.

It’s Christmas and I’m lazy, so here’s a pointless hypothetical scenario showing why I should never be allowed to work as a mall santa

A skinny, morose-looking Santa Claus sits in a kiosk in the Southtown Shopping Center. It’s two days before Christmas, and he is clearly intoxicated through a variety of questionably legal means.

Santa: What would you like for Christmas, little boy?

Photographer: I’m not a little boy. I’m the photographer. I work here. I’m also 6’1”.

Santa: I will try my best to get you a photographer for Christmas, little boy.

Photographer: Jesus Christ. Let’s just get a kid in front of him and hope for the best.

We are all apathetic, blithering idiots

There’s always one elderly person at Christmas dinner who blurts out something racist. It’s almost a tradition. The hosts usually try to pass it off as a lovable trait. “Oh, he was just born in an era when it was okay to assume minorities were plotting to steal your laundry. Also, he’s very old, so rest assured he’ll likely die from a common cold soon. Possibly even tomorrow.”

We’ve spent our whole lives assuming we could never be that elderly bigot. We don’t have any prejudices. We share Huffpost “Black Voices” links on social media all the time! We’ve hugged Gay Americans without making boner jokes. We never cross the street to avoid certain types of people. Except for homeless people, but they encompass all races, so that’s fine.

Yep, we’re pretty damn perfect. It’s hard to believe that one single generation of human beings could be so amazingly perfect and open-minded. I mean, nobody says “homo” on TV anymore. That’s awesome. Let’s all stop and pat ourselves on the back. While doing that, let’s turn on the news to pass the time.