Monday, March 22, 2010



Rhetorical questions, questionable rhetoric, and whimsical observations on the absurdities of modern life.
  • I can set up a new computer with ease and program all sorts of recording devices, but having to change the vacuum-cleaner bag fills me with dread.
  • The last time I ordered shish kebab, I got a lot more shish than kebab.
  • Life was simpler when the color of your car didn’t sound like the color of your wife’s favorite nail polish.  (“Hey, Ralph, what color is your new car?” “Um, I think it’s called Crystal Quartz Metallic.” “Oh.”)
  • If you can tell the difference between beige, tan, bone, off-white, ivory and sand, you’re a woman. 
  • Grocery-store imponderable: Why is there no pork-flavored cat food? There's chicken, turkey, beef, even veal, plus all manner of seafood, but no pork. There must be a reason, but I’ve found no clear consensus as to what it is.
  • If you ever see a cat sticking its head out the window of a moving car or truck . . . you don’t want to go anywhere near that cat.
  • Least-publicized victims of the sub-prime mortgage/foreclosure mess:  Abandoned pets.
  • Googling the sturgeon:  I found it described as “spectacularly unattractive” and “butt-ugly” . . . as well as “flat-out mean.”  So in addition to not winning any beauty pageants, I guess it won’t win any Fish Congeniality Awards, either.
  • Would Ivan the Terrible have been a nicer guy if he had had a different last name?
  • Rite of passage for Saudi Arabia teenagers” “Hey, Dad, can I have the camel tonight?”
  • Know Your Nasewaupee department:  The township, named after an Menominee Indian chief in 1859, has a most iconic street name in its southwest sector: Cheesehead Lane.  (Sorry, no Fish Boil Boulevard.)
  • I love my iPod for listening to music, but otherwise, let’s just say it hasn’t been my life’s ambition to watch movies on a 2-inch-by-2-inch screen.
  • Given the choice between root canal and attending a bridal or baby shower, 10 out of 10 guys are going to the dentist.  At least there you’ve got the Novocain.
  • Why do they keep naming hurricanes and tropical storms after perfectly innocent everyday people?  I knew a waitress named Katrina who had to take her name tag off to put an end to the lame jokes. Solution: Dip into our ample inventory of historical villains.  (“This just in: Tropical Storm Dracula is gathering steam in the North Atlantic; meanwhile, residents of the Louisiana Gulf Coast are still reeling from the ravages of last week’s Hurricane Hitler.”)
  • Retirement project:  Sit by the mailbox on a nice day with a cold drink and a good book and see what time they really make those pickups.
  • All-time favorite restaurant sign:  “Please wait for hostess to be seated.”
  • Seen in restaurant men’s room:  “I hate graffiti.” (Below: “I hate all Italian food.”)
  • Mel Brooks says his favorite opera composer is Joe Green-- his way of saying Giuseppe Verdi. (Oh, that Mel!)
  • Redundancy patrol:  "Reason why," "pre-plan," "advance warning."
  • Each year, approximately 8,000 Americans are treated for toothpick-related injuries.  No figures yet on dental floss, Q-tips or collar stays.
  • I hate it when I see an empty lot after a demolition and can’t remember the building that used to be there.
  • But I love it when the electric company didn’t read the meter and sends me an “estimated bill.” I just send them an estimated check!  ($83.46?  No, let’s go with $52.41.)
  • Whatever happened to John Davidson?
  • Few things in life are more satisfying than an easily peeled hard-boiled egg.
  • Is there a warning to trespassers on the side of the Surgeon General’s house?
  • Who decided that “issues” was the modern substitute for “problems?”  “Oh, I have issues with that.”  “Oh, I can’t play tennis today; I’ve got shoulder issues.”  I definitely have a problem with that.
  • Jim’s Law of Urban Survival:  All neighborhoods are safe at 6 o’clock in the morning.
  • My wife and I should count our blessings. We’ve had great luck with cars, but lamps?  Forget it! 
  • Favorite country song title:  “If the phone don’t ring, you know it’s me.” (Gordon Cormier, lyricist.)
  • The one-stop-shopping concept has been honed to a fine edge in northern Wisconsin.  You can rent a video, get a hunting license and buy a bag of night crawlers, all in the same store.  Try doing that in Midtown Manhattan!
  • (Actually, there are plenty of night crawlers in Midtown Manhattan, but they’re not the kind any self-respecting fisherman would use.) 

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