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MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. (CAP) - The ongoing battle between Google and the country of China escalated to a new level yesterday as employees at the search giant's Googleplex headquarters in California were refused takeout service at any of the area's Chinese food restaurants. Employees were left scrambling to come up with last-minute lunch alternatives.
"So this is how they want to play it, eh?" said Google co-founder Larry Page while he desperately googled fast food delivery mountain view as the lunch hour approached. "Man, these search results suck. Let me see if Bing has anything.
"Umm, that was ... off the record," he added. "Oh, look, there's a KFC."
This unified effort by local Chinese food restaurants is the latest salvo in a battle that has seen the U.S. accuse China of censoring internet content dating as far back as the 2008 summer Olympic games when China blocked Google Maps images of workers clearing dead bodies from the bay of Qingdao in preparation for the Olympic sailing events. Pundits are expressing concern over what this move could do to the Saturday evening dinner plans for millions of Americans.
"This is human rights abuse at an unprecedented scale," said Merrill Lunch analyst Raquel Tabor. "The thing that people need to understand is that if this can happen at Google - it can happen anywhere. Enjoy that beef and broccoli next time you go, because it may be your last."
Historians note that Chinese food has been part of the American fabric ever since General Gao surrendered to Ulysses S Grant at Appomattox in 1865. They say altering the landscape of American cuisine in such a fashion could have far-reaching ramifications, from the need to re-write Law & Order scripts to incorporate a different meal for the characters in the district attorney's office to a general lunchtime malaise in the American workforce.
"I'll tell ya, Sergey Brin is a friggin' bear for the entire week if he doesn't get his mushi pork on Monday afternoons," said one Google employee who asked not to be identified. "And you best just leave that last crab rangoon, too, if you know what's good for you."
The Obama administration has yet to release an official statement regarding the Chinese food sanctions because the president reportedly fears repercussions to other industries such as dry cleaning if the U.S. response is too harsh. Still, it's likely the U.S. will strike back with some sort of sanctions of their own.
"Just as soon as we, uhh, figure out exactly what it is we export over there," Obama noted.
Obama said he has authorized the creation of a task force aimed at determining "once and for all" what the ingredients of an egg roll are and whether any correlation exists between the number of common victualer licenses awarded to Chinese food proprietors in a certain area and any change in that area's stray cat population.
"Plus the fact that there's actually no lobster in lobster sauce," he added. "That just burns me."
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