The Miami-Dade Expressway Authority (MDX) announced on Monday that it plans to greatly expand the number of toll plazas along State Road 836. The plan, which will take thirteen years and cost upwards of $1.4 billion dollars, will see 60 new toll installations along the 15-mile expressway. The design was unveiled to the County Commission and Metropolitan Planning Organization to resounding applause by an unnamed representative of the MDX, a Borg-like collective comprised of 13 assimilated, unautonomous board members.

The project, which breaks ground next week, is an addendum to a current plan to add tolled express lanes along the connected Palmetto and Dolphin freeways. Touting the plan as “Toll-a-Palooza-Mageden”, the unnamed cybernetic MDX representative walked the County Commission through its schematics while clandestinely wringing its hand indulgently and vibrating with what can only be described as “cybernetic glee.”

The completed plan will be a self-serving funding mechanism for future MDX schemes. As explained to an engrossed County Commission, the new tolls will include kinetic roadway panels that will divert pressurized energy from passing cars to batteries powering the soul engines of the MDX Borg Board. By these means, claimed the voice of the MDX collective, the MDX will live on in perpetuity so long as Miami has traffic.

“Resistance is futile,” the MDX spokes-entity added.

In an effort to control costs, the Miami Herald announced today that it will no longer publish vowels, opting to instead communicate the news through consonants, numbers, and, where appropriate, emojis. The decision comes as a response to years of decreasing ad revenues caused by the declining readership of an increasingly illiterate public. “Oh, I don’t read the paper,” said every person we could find to comment on the story under the age of 40.

The Plantain reached out to The Miami Herald for comment via telephone, but a response could not be heard over the vocalized writhing and resume typing of reporters in the Herald’s newsroom. The Herald did, however, issue the following statement in the form of a letter from publisher Alexandra Villoch in this morning’s paper:

Dr Hrld rdrs,

Th Mm Hrld hs wrkd 2 kpwth mdrn 🕙. Strtng 2dy, Th Hrld wll nt prnt vwls. Th dcsn ws nt ez, bt ws ncssry.

Ths nw frmt wll nt mpct th ppr’s qlty or rprtng.

Sncrly,

👧

This is, of course, not the first effort by the Herald to cut its costs in recent years. Other measures include naming Google Translate as editor of El Nuevo Herald, decreasing the footprint of the paper’s local section, and publishing fewer facts.

The Miami Dolphins picked up offensive tackle Laremy Tunsil with the 13th pick in the 2016 draft. The Ole Miss standout was supposed be a top-three draft choice, but he had gotten “a bit too high” shortly before the draft and didn’t make it to the ceremony until a dozen other teams had already made their selections. When Mr. Tunsil finally arrived to the draft clutching a half-full Arby’s bag of French fries, the Dolphins pounced.

In a press conference following his selection, a blurry-eyed Tunsil told reporters that he was “stoked” to move to Miami and looked forward to serving many four-game drug suspensions as a Dolphin. He said he was also excited to work with new coach Adam Gase and quarterback Ryan Tannehill, and whoever their replacements would be next year.

Plantain reporters asked Mr. Tunsil to comment on a leaked video of him smoking marijuana from a gas-mask bong, but a giggly Mr. Tunsil ignored the questions, choosing instead to leave the press conference early to watch a few episodes of Family Guy with his mentor Ricky Williams.

Reached for comment about his relationship with Mr. Tunsil, Ricky Williams started talking about how his mentee would be a great pro player, but then got distracted by his own scattered thoughts. The former Pro Bowl MVP then asked this reporter if I wanted to “go to Chipotle,” and started singing Bob Marley’s Three Little Birds.

“Don’t worry, about a thing. Cause every little thing is gonna be alright…at Chipotle “, sang Mr. Williams with glee.

Thousands flocked to Marlins Stadium tonight to see Beyonce perform. But not everyone at the sold-out show was pleased to see the 34-year-old superstar come to town. A small group of protestors from the Florida Orange Council protested the event, upset that the singer named her latest album Lemonade, and not Orange Juice, a drink the Orange Council claims is far more tasty and nutritious than Lemonade.

Dave Walcott, the Orange Council’s president, marched outside the event with a sign that said “Lemonade Made Me Sour!” The 48-year-old Homestead resident told reporters that “since the release of her Lemonade album, sales of lemons have increased by over 6000%! Meanwhile, orange sales are down 60%. Beyonce is single handedly destroying the lives of thousands of Florida orange growers. And what’s worse is she is coming to Florida right after releasing that wretched album and rubbing it in our faces.”

Although the protest was peaceful for most of the night, things did get tense when Mr. Walcott threw a large Orange at the singer, causing fans to boo believing Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump had stormed the stage. Fortunately for Mr. Walcott, he was not arrested because the Miami police union actually boycotted the concert because of Beyonce’s controversial opinion that black people should not be indiscriminately shot in the street.

It appear that West Kendall, the unincorporated suburban community known for its traffic and strip malls, is about to undergo another major rebranding effort. At a press conference outside of an abandoned Toyota dealership, County Commissioner Juan C. Zapata announced that he had introduced a resolution to rename the area “Las Vegas”, a name he hopes will bring tourism to the sprawl.

“Las Vegas is the perfect name for our community. Like the real Las Vegas, West Kendall has countless entertainment and dining options, as well as an abundance of reasonably priced prostitutes,” the Commissioner told reporters. “I think all that is holding our community back is its name.”

West Kendall, of course, has already undergone a significant rebranding effort at the hands of Commissioner Zapata. Earlier this year the Commissioner tried with little success to convince locals to refer to the area as Miami’s “West End”, a name intended to evoke the fashionable elegance of London’s theater district. In practice, however, the West End rebranding attempt evoked only confusion and consternation.

“I think the “West End” would have been a great name for the community because West Kendall, like London, is a posh area that brings to mind world-class art and culture. But the name failed to catch on and I am self-aware enough to know when to abandon a well-intentioned, though ultimately misguided, cause,” said the Commissioner.

Coinciding with the planned name change is a proposal to bring legalized gambling to the suburban community. Reports suggest that Commissioner Zapata is already courting the Malaysian conglomerate Genting with promises of subsidies with the hope that they build a casino in soon-to-be “Las Vegas, Miami”.

The Plantain asked Regina George, a West Kendall local, whether she supported Commissioner Zapata’s never-ending effort to rename her community. Ms. George–who noted that she was angered by the Commissioner’s treatment of the West Kendall name, and by extension its residents, as stigmatized–directed her answer to her Commissioner:

“Stop trying to make the West End happen! It is NOT going to happen!”

Last June, Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez announced his controversial plan to attract wealthy animal hunters to South Florida by offering manatee hunting permits to sportsmen. Describing his plan as a “game changer,” the Mayor predicted that manatee hunting would bring thousands of wealthy adventurists to the County to hunt the majestic sea creatures, and pushed through over $15,000,000 in subsidies to make his vision a reality.

And so, on Monday, Mayor Gimenez will cut the ribbon at Miami’s Marine Stadium and allow the first hunters to wade into the pulverized muck, elephant guns and dynamite in hand, to bag themselves a manatee.

“Bear hunting, deer hunting, big game hunting, they’re great. But we needed something local,” said Mayor Gimenez. “Manatee hunting? That’s so Miami.”

The manatee hunting ordinance was heartedly supported by the County Commission, with only three commissioners voting against it. It was also supported by City of Miami officials, who were just happy to find a use for the long neglected Marine Stadium.

“After years of subsidizing boat shows that destroyed the Stadium’s basin, the useless structure is now the perfect spot for spectators to watch hunters blow up manatees,” said City of Miami Manager Daniel Alfonso. “It’s nice to know that after years of mismanagement, Miami’s Marine Stadium will finally be put to good use.”

For all its controversy, local residents have been extremely vocal of their support of the proposal. “What good are all of these guns if we can’t shoot a manatee every once in a while?”, asked Jose Miranda Fernandez. “Do you know the market price of manatee meat? I’m going to shoot one and put rims on my Nissan.”

Hunters who obtain a permit will be limited to 3 manatees per day, and 10 per season. Manatee season runs from April to September, or until Miami is out of manatees.

Navarro Pharmacist Dr. Andrea Estrada reported higher than usual prescription requests of Viagra following news that Prince, the legendary alien behind literally millions of consummations, has died. “I’ve never seen anything like it,” said Dr. Estrada, “it’s as if the entire world instantly knew that they would not be able to perform sexually without help.” Similar losses of sexual desire have been reported throughout the Country.

In a joint-statement released by the Center for Disease Control and the Minnesota State Attorney’s Office, officials revealed that Prince died from exhaustion after being forced to single-handedly sustain the world’s sexual energy following David Bowie’s untimely death in January. “It was just too much for him to handle”, the statement read.

The CDC warns of a sudden and precipitous drop in the world’s population due to the sexual inadequacy initiated by Prince’s death. “This, I’m afraid, is end times”, said CDC director Mitchell Davidson tearfully.

Pfizer, the pharmaceutical company that manufactures Viagra, announced that it would immediately start ramping up production of its medication to address the increase demand. They plan to offer a raspberry flavored “Prince Edition” of the popular erectile dysfunction drug in his majesty’s honor.

Culinary TV personality Anthony Bourdain, host of CNN’s exotic food show “Parts Unknown,” is on a quest in South Florida this week to find a restaurant where he believes locals are consuming feces.

In an interview with The Plantain, Mr. Bourdain said he was disgusted yet intrigued when he overheard a young woman on her phone in downtown Atlanta tell a friend she was “just eating shit in South Beach” the previous weekend.

“I knew right away I had to do an episode about this phenomenon,” said Mr. Bourdain. “I once did a show where I ate a barely cooked warthog anus in Namibia, and it was a huge hit. But this stuff about millennials eating poop here in the US? That would be a blockbuster.”

When questioning Miami residents about where he could find a venue that served excrement, Mr. Bourdain said he was repeatedly dismissed and once told to “stop eating shit and go home,” a response that further intrigued the CNN host.

“I think that person was trying to let me in on the secret without actually telling me. These poop meals must only happen behind closed doors, like the secret supper clubs in Manhattan,” Mr. Bourdain said. “It does sound like it could be a bit kinky.”

As his supervisors at CNN repeatedly called for status updates, an exasperated Mr. Bourdain tossed away his phone, reclined in a beach chair, and decided to relax for the entire day as he pondered how to find the elusive shit-serving restaurant.

Miami Beach’s most hedonistic Mid-April tradition, Floatopia, made waves last weekend as participants disgusted their way into national news. Hundreds of Miamians hit the surf on assorted floatation devices for an afternoon of bathing and debauchery, leaving a literal sea of garbage in their wake. Lauded as “Miami’s Third Dirtiest Party”, the eighth annual Floatopia saw revelers use the Beach repeatedly and without remorse. By sundown, countless loads of junk were left all over the inconsolable Beach.

The ransacking, which left dissatisfied Beach residents in need of a long showers and cuddles, made the news roundups on Sunday as Miami Beach Commissioner Michael Grieco took to social media with pictures and posts of the aftermath. “This is an absolute travesty,” the Commissioner declared in a video posted to Facebook. “Floatopia will never happen on Miami Beach again. From now on, Miami Beach will only allow wholesome, respectable, and family-oriented traditions that set positive examples for conduct and decency, such as Winter Music Conference and Spring Break”

Floatopia’s “floaters” felt otherwise, however, as droves of wet, sweaty, and drunken mainland residents were seen collectively hi-fiving each other as they left the Beach to recover on its own. Floatopian volunteers tried to console the dejected Beach, telling it that “it was not its fault.”

“The Beach deserved a lot better,” said one volunteer as he loaded empty Corona bottles and lemon wedges into a deflated raft.

Mayor Philip Levine, who participated in Floatopia by riding the waves on his float, a “modest” $22.3 million dollar yacht named “The Phil-otopia”, addressed the issue from both ends in an emergency press conference, simultaneously trying to assuage angry Beach residents by declaring the Beach’s treatment a “gross violation” while also trying to promote the Beach’s service industry revenue by encouraging visitors to “come back for more anytime”.

“The Beach could have said no and told us to stop,” claimed David Suarez, who works sporadically as a “brand ambassador” for Vapor Shark. “I didn’t hear any crying when we penetrated those sweet waves and rode them till the tide went out. I mean, the Beach was wet the whole time.”

Meanwhile, discontented locals who could not find parking were quick to criticize the Beach for not giving them what they came for. Chad Testerverter, a Third-Year business major from the University of Miami, angrily complained on Twitter that he couldn’t find a parking spot, and therefore concluded Miami Beach was a float-teasing “dyke”, vaguely understanding the term had some nautical definition, but not quite certain of its exact meaning.

Floatopia left Miami feeling conflicted with one hell of a mess to clean up. The Miami Beach City Commission has vowed to address the festival’s future at its next meeting. Agenda items include ways to clean-up its image and a plan to test the event site for venereal infections.

On a brighter note, the Commission was told Monday that the Guinness Book of World Records had recognized the municipality for the Most Ironic Demonstration of a Region’s Complete Detachment from Basic Human Decency for allowing Floatopians to debase the City’s beautiful Beach at the very same time the annual “Baynanza Beach Cleanup” was turning out hundreds of volunteers to different sites across Biscayne Bay to clean up trash from Miami’s other defiled shores. Seriously.

Dirk Hilton, CEO of Vapor Shark announced at a press conference in South Miami that his company is planning to expand throughout Miami-Dade County, with a specific focus on taking over spaces currently occupied by your favorite childhood restaurants.

“Vapor Shark is excited about this next step,” said Mr. Hilton before exhaling a large plume of musty-smelling vapor drawn from a wand attached to a lanyard around his neck. “We look forward to continuing to offer the community a “healthy”, though not-scientifically confirmed, way for smokers to wean themselves off of cigarettes without all of the hassle or benefits of actually quitting smoking,” the Oakley-wearing 33-year-old added.

Since the launch of its first retail “vape lounge” in 2012, Vapor Shark has grown at a tremendous rate by marketing its products to teenagers and Linken Park fans. The company plans to add 16 new vape lounges over the next year, including in locations now occupied by several restaurants that you cherish but have not been to for years, including The Big Cheese, Swensons, Wall’s Ice Cream and Frankie’s Pizza. A location is also planned for the area of Pearl Art Supply that is not currently a fucking Mattress Store.

“It’s our goal to make our high-quality products easily available to the men and women of Miami-Dade County,” said Mr. Hilton before retreating to the washroom where he coughed up a small but noticeable amount of blood that he keeps telling himself is no cause for concern.