While members of Congress may not have sacrificed their pay last week while causing hundreds of thousands of federal workers to give up theirs through mandatory unpaid furloughs, it wasn't as if they didn't suffer.
According to its online menu, the Longworth Café, the only U.S. House of Representatives dining facility still operating during the government shutdown, served beef and three-bean chili for five consecutive days last week. Since Tuesday, Congressional lavatory cleaning services have been suspended.
Do the math.
One can only imagine other unintended consequences of the federal government shutdown:
With its science mission jettisoned for the duration of the shutdown, NASA's Mars Rover "Curiosity" inadvertently rolls over colony of one-celled organisms on its way to the red planet's Mount Sharp, discovering and eliminating Martian life in the first recorded extraterrestrial road kill incident.
With the National Zoo's "Panda Cam" switched off due to the shutdown, a lonely Smoky Bear, furloughed by the U. S. Forest Service, sneaks into the enclosure containing female giant panda Mei Xiang while carrying a bouquet of bamboo shoots. Sino-American relations take a brief but immediate turn for the better until "essential" zoo employees discover and tranquilize the fire-fighting bruin intruder.
A surprised group of burned and battered tourists was rescued from the pond surrounding Old Faithful at Yellowstone National Park after being shot 125 feet skyward on a plume of scalding water. They told park law enforcement rangers they thought the geyser had been "turned off" since the park was closed.
Message from intelligent life source in deep space calling for Earth to "send more 'Bonanza' reruns" goes unheard, due to shutdown of National Radio Astronomy Observatory antennas across the nation.Massive furloughs force National Security Agency to drop monitoring of email and telephone conversations and focus on Citizens Band radio conversations between truckers.