Sunday, November 14, 2010


Rhetorical questions, questionable rhetoric and whimsical observations about the absurdities of contemporary life:
  • So the Food and Drug Administration now says it will require larger and more graphic warning labels on cigarette ads and cigarette packaging.
  • What rubbish!  Hey, I smoked 3 packs a day for 35 years . . . and there's nothing wrong with my lung!
  • Malaprop of the Century:  "There was this guy on the plane who started choking violently.  But then somebody came up from behind and gave him a Heineken!" (Thanks to SZSEZ field reporter Janice Welzien of Chicago.)
  • Poker has become so popular, young people are even getting into it.  What's next?  The Little League World Series of Poker?
  • So now we're cozying up to India, with President Obama urging that nation have a permanent spot on the United Nations Security Council--at the same time that we're selling warplanes to India's arch-rival  Pakistan.  Interesting to see how that plays out!
  • Headline of the Week I: "Mutant mosquitoes fight dengue fever in Cayman Islands."  SZSEZ's Caribbean bureau will be following this story closely.
  • Headline of the Week II: "Ex-NFL player [David] Meggett gets 30 years in sex assault case."  That's NFL--as in National Felons League, of course.  (If Meggett has a dog, maybe Michael Vick can look after it for him while he's gone.)
  • "Nobody in the game of football should be called a genius.  A genius is someone like Norman Einstein."--Joe Theissmann, former quarterback.
  • Didn't the two-minute warning in football originate before they had clocks and huge electronic scoreboards? If so, why do they still have it? Just another excuse to go to a commercial? (I know, I know--the scoreboard clock "is not the official time," but how far off can it be?)
  • Word of the Week:  "Jackwagon." According to the Online Slang Dictionary: "An insult. Likely coined specifically for the Geico commercial quoted in the following citation. . . .
  • Therapist: "Maybe we should chug on over to Mamby-Pamby Land where maybe we can find some confidence for you, you jackwagon."
  • Or: "A useless piece of equipment, usually military, used to refer to a mule-drawn freight wagon that had been pieced together from discarded or substandard parts and subject to frequent breakdowns. Jackwagons typically were good for only one or two uses, then abandoned along roadsides and in ditches and were often re-cannibalized to create new jackwagons."
  • Lone drawback to losing the 90  pounds I've kept off for four years--having to give up my title: Mr. America and Parts of Canada!
  • When's the last time you heard someone was "in cahoots" with someone?  It's a phrase that seems to be fading away (even if the behavior it denotes isn't).
  • Overheard: "If you rob a bank, it's called a felony; if the bank robs you, it's called a service charge."
  • Frank Rich of the New York Times on the election: "This is a snapshot of a whiplashed country that (understandably) doesn’t know whose butt to kick first. It means that [President] Obama can make a comeback, but only if he figures out what he has to come back from and where he has to go."
  • I've never seen a jogger that didn't look like he or she was in pain.  Tremendous pain.
  • Jim's Law of Urban Survival:  All neighborhoods are safe at 6 o'clock in the morning. 
  • Pretentious Pronunciation Dept.: In his book  "The Accidents of Style," Charles Harrington Elster says pronouncing "homage" as "oh-MAHGZ" is  a "preposterous de-Anglicization that is becoming fashionable among the literati." (Well said, Charles.  Down with such affectatious pronunciations such as "neesh" instead of "nitch" for the word "niche."  I'm just sayin'.)
  • It's gotta be tough being the pope.  You think it's easy going on tour without a book or an album coming out?
  • "He played the king as if afraid someone would play the ace."--British drama review
  • A journey of a thousand miles begins with an ATM.
  • Book Title of the Week: "The Ultimate Dog Treat Cookbook: Homemade Goodies for Man's Best Friend," by Liz Palika. (Damn! Another blockbuster from Liz Palika!)
  • Today's Latin lesson: Non ut illic quisquam nefas per ut! ("Not that there's anything wrong with that!")

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