Someone please tell me that this is an April Fools' joke. It seems that there's a dust-up in Ohio regarding... oh, I'll just let the Akron Beacon Journal explain it:
The Portage County Hazardous Materials Unit and Bomb Detection Unit were called in to downtown Ravenna on Friday morning after seventeen suspicious packages -- boxes wrapped in gold wrapping paper with question marks spray painted on them -- had alarmed residents.
Stop me if you see where this is going.
Five girls -- age 16 and 17 -- claimed responsibility for making and placing the packages. The girls said they found an Internet site that included step-by-step instructions for creating replicas of blocks featured in the game.
That's right: five girls were building their own Mushroom Kingdom and spreading question blocks inspired by Super Mario Bros. around their Ohio town. There are several things to consider in this case, first and foremost the question of "why weren't there gamer girls like this around when I was that age?". Probably more relevant, however, is how this incident is on the verge of spiraling out of control. Imagine if the mainstream mass media gets hold of it. All the pieces of outrage are there: a video game inspired teenagers to vandalize the city with mysterious packages created from information downloaded off the Internet. Somewhere out there Jack Thompson is foaming at the mouth right now. More than usual, I mean.