Tuesday, July 14, 2009

CCORDING to a recent Department of Homeland Security report, less than 1% of the world’s 109-million abandoned, hurting children were adopted in 2005. Were you one of the lucky parents? No? Well, why not? Adopted children have quickly become the must-have accessory for this year (barely surpassing Coach purses and freeloading significant others), so what is holding you back from the illustrious ranks of the Jolie-Pitts, Kirk Cameron, and Ozzie Osbourne? Is it finances? Time? Parole? We believe that everyone is entitled to child ownership, including you. Yes, you! To ease the burden on families who can neither afford nor understand the traditional adoption system, we have formulated this easy four-step process to guide you on your quest for babies. Enjoy!

Step 1: Procuring the Child

When adopting a child, the first decision is location, location, location. Diversity is key for optimal satisfaction; by pushing an ethnic infant around the cul-de-sac, you will surely garner the envy and awe of every Junior League neighbor. If you are white, head to Nigeria. African-American? Communist China’s for you! Latino? From Russia with love. The voyage to your preferred nation will be the most expensive part of your adoption, so before purchasing a ticket, consider cheaper alternatives: paddle boat, unicycle, thestral (see Witchcraft for Dummies), sea turtles, etc.

Should you decide to fly, proceed with caution when government officials ask for the purpose of your trip. You don’t to cause a scene in the airport, and “smuggling small children” may not be taken well. Instead, consider “I tame lions in a traveling circus,” “God called me,” or, if all else fails, speaking Klingon. Security will be disinclined to question you further.

Upon entrance to the country, resist the temptation to seek a child at an orphanage. Unnecessary obstacles including signatures, formal meetings, and totalitarian régimes will cross your path. Instead, feel free to grab a kid right off the street and place him/her into your handbag or under your coat. As the earlier-cited Department of Homeland Security report states, if a child is not strolling barefoot along the streets, s/he is most likely locked in a dungeon alongside weapons of mass destruction. It is your civic duty to quickly remove children from these dangerous living situations and shower them in American love—a love so profound you’ll need hired help to express it.

Step 2: Travel Preparations

Once your return the baby safely to your hostel or back alley, it is important to make an exit as quickly and quietly as possible. Unfortunately, because most babies are not known for stealth ninja abilities, the first step towards properly packaging your child is medication. We recommend the slightest overdose of Benadryl; make sure you carry some with you, as foreign drugstores rarely stock American medicines. In case of an emergency, any box featuring moons, stars, or sleeping people should do. If you are feeling particularly creative, try a disguise (Paris Hilton and puppy? Professional with exceptionally tiny business partner?). For most, however, it is enough to swath the child in Bubble Wrap and stuff it in the carry-on. Cross your fingers!

Step 3: On the Move

You’re not packing 20 kilos of cocaine. Play it cool.

They. Don’t. Know.

Step 4: Assimilation

So you made it to America. What now? It’s time to make your new family member feel welcomed! You unwittingly began the process overseas; the medicines used in Step 2 prepared him/her for the Concerta, Paxil, and Prozac that every American child needs to function properly in the public school system. Thanks to your superb instincts, the transition will be seamless.

Next, take a gander at your youngster’s girth. The Department of Homeland Security tells us that s/he has probably subsisted on a diet of rice, rice, rice, and/or human flesh for years, resulting in a scant midsection. To encourage a more convex figure, we recommend food-processing Happy Meals in lieu of Gerber’s, suppressing movement with increased naptimes, and filling bottles with the leftover grease from those ¾-pound hamburgers you had for dinner last night. Always remember: chubby makes cheery!

Finally—and most importantly—you must guide your child toward a personal relationship with Christ. Our nation is founded on Christian principles, made evident through our benevolent actions in Iraq and humble use of natural resources. After putting in so much hard work to bring children to this nation, we would hate for them to burn in hell – or, at the very least, miss out on those delicious church suppers.

* * *

Well, congratulations, parent! It is time to spread your proverbial wings and fly those skies of motherhood and fatherhood solo. But remember, you’ll never be alone.

Your cellmates need friends, too.

Adrienne is an undergraduate at Clemson University. Her work has been published nowhere else. She will eventually be the author of many books, including a Pulitzer Prize–winning short-story collection. To invest in her future, e-mail akranki@g.clemson.edu.

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