Compendium | An honest critique of The Weekly

Objectively assessing the state of the paper

It is a truth universally acknowledged that The Weekly has many sections. Notable examples include Compendium!, Features, Design, Compendium!, Illustrations, and Compendium!. And yet it is a fact no less true than it is ignored that not all sections perform at a comparable level. In fact, one need look no further than the closest newspaper stand to discover stark disparities in quality between the sections, one of them standing out as a notable exception, a clear outlier, a lone statistical anomaly, a rare gem, a daring dissidence; in sum, a miracle truly one of its kind. My astute readers will no doubt have realized – and this clarification is superfluous – that I speak of the Compendium! section. Yet, the dishearteningly insufficient attention accorded to the existence of this primus inter pares (to which I dare so refer only euphemistically) is a state of affairs most unfortunate, which the present exposition seeks to rectify.

Lest we cause offence, it is imperative to recognize the other sections’ sizeable contributions to the paper. There can be not a shade of doubt that our dearest Weekly would find itself in a position most undesirable were it to be deprived of the News section’s platitudinous event coverage and egregious errata; of the Culture section’s little-read reviews of poorly staged theatrical productions; of the Photos section’s unoriginal building photographs; of the Sports section’s incoherent rants; or of the numerous copy errors that permeate each issue. Even more significantly, however, The Weekly simply could not do without the motivation behind the editors’ efforts, the driving force that unflinchingly leads them toward a better and brighter future for their section; namely their unfaltering desire to render it as similar as possible to Compendium!. However futile, this aspiration is truly the guiding star that illuminates the otherwise soul-shattering emptiness of Shtaneer B-24.

Boldly leading the way, daring to explore intellectual depths never before considered, the Compendium! section has proven to be a beacon of pure creativity and a paragon of the art of satire. As the section editors only deign to publish the most exquisite writing specimens from the most refined spirits among their myriad prospective contributors, it comes as no surprise that reading a Compendium! piece is a mind-altering experience. As would a sword, the sharp sarcastic wit pierces through the reader’s fallacious preconceptions to produce a most phenomenal epiphany, each sentence another ray of unadulterated wisdom enlightening the mind. One cannot know, not having read a Compendium! article, what it means to have truly mastered the comedic form.

Broad in scope as in reach is the influence of the Compendium! section. Recognizing the unmatched incisiveness of its political satire, policy makers far and wide look to The Weekly’s Compendium! section for guidance and inspiration. Many a world leader was carried to election on a platform no more extensive than simply full allegiance to the opinions published in The Weekly’s Compendium! section. Yet, true to its principles, Compendium! retains its subversive edge, exercising its power in the most noble fashion, and helping to bring about social justice worldwide. Humanity’s ever-accelerating moral progress is due in no small part (forgive the understatement) to The Weekly’s Compendium! editors; as such, they have to come to form an integral part of our planet’s sociopolitical and comedic landscape.

Weekly editors are of course profoundly marked by their continued coexistence with the Compendium! section. Occasionally, gathered in an arrangement of a circular nature, editors will ceremonially bask in the glory of Compendium!, immensely grateful and forever indebted to the Compendium! editors for the life-defining experience of sharing pages every week with the most insightful collection of words to have ever graced this Earth. Thus assembled, Weekly editors will enter a trance of great spiritual power and begin to utter unrepeatable sounds endowed with profound meaning, which to an untrained ear might appear eerily unsettling. As the choir thus produced builds in force, a luminous cloud will form above the Shtaneer building, its magnetic attraction prompting uncontrollable cries from Weekly editors. “O Compendium!,” you will hear sung, “blessed are we with thy presence, but oh how cursed with thine unattainable excellence! Why,” they will cry, their jealous anguish finally showing, “must we be daily reminded of our own inferiority! Misery! Shame! It is but hopeless to – ”[The rest of the article is a series of incomprehensible words, letters, punctuation marks, and numbers.]