Tuesday, May 24, 2011


Rhetorical questions, questionable rhetoric and whimsical observations about the absurdities of contemporary life:
"Macho Man" Savage
  • SZSEZ Exclusive:  Osama bin-Laden's first and only words when the Navy SEALs burst open the door to his hiding place:  "Jimmy John's?"
  • Newt Gingrich's furious backpedaling on his health-care pronouncements recalls a remark once made by American journalist John Gunther: "He was trying to save both his faces."
  • Randy Mario Poffo played minor league baseball for about four years in the St. Louis Cardinals and Cincinnati Reds organizations, mainly as an outfielder, before becoming the idol of millions as wrestling star Randy "Macho Man" Savage.  R.I.P., Mr.  Poffo/Savage.
  • (Speaking of wrestlers' earlier lives: Rumors that Andre the Giant played professional volleyball are just that--rumors.)
  • (Personal note/full disclosure: As a baseball player, I "went deep" once in a while, but more often than not, I went shallow. But that was before I launched my short-lived kick-boxing career . . . .)
  • Who determines those goofy (but oh-so-important) Model Numbers they put on products?
  • ("Hey, C.P., let's make this one . . . um . . . VMT06123EB345IU.  Sound good to you?")
  • (I'm sure even the smallest manufacturing company never called something Model No. 1, even though it was the first widget, grommet or hemorrhoid remedy they produced. They always bump the numbers up to make their company appear bigger than it really is.)
  • Speaking of products, herewith . . .
  • SZSEZ'S Stupid Actual Warning Label of the Week: On a Sears hairdryer: "Do not use while sleeping."
  • SZSEZ'S Stupid Actual Package Blurb of the Week: On a bag of Doritos: "You could be a winner! No purchase necessary. Details inside."
  • Here's an idea: Next time someone floats the idea of taxpayers footing the bill for someone's new sports stadium (as was recently the case in Milwaukee regarding a new home for the basketball Bucks), how about having the players pay for it?  With their outsized salaries and licensing royalties, they obviously can afford it.
  • Coming soon to a bookstore near you:  "SZSEZ to English--English to SZSEZ dictionary." (Also coming soon:  The supercool SZSEZ Action Figure and SZSEZ Bobblehead--sold separately.)
  • "I cook with wine. Sometimes I even add it to the food."--W.C. Fields
  • Overheard: "For every action there is an equal and opposite government program."
  • Why do Storm Chasers drive their custom-equipped vehicles around chasing tornadoes? Why don't they just sit in a trailer and wait for one?--The Vent at AJC.com.
  • "Naltyst," "lankl," "tifflr" and "dapLzTFb." (Those were just the latest "verification words" I had to type in to e-mail news stories and columns to family and friends.  Do not adjust your computer. Thank you.)
  • When enemies of the U.S. are discussed, no one ever mentions Switzerland. But if there were no such thing as those fabled "Swiss bank accounts," how much of a game-changer would that be for U.S. coffers?  (That and the equally fabled "underground economy" . . . .)
  • Jim's Ethnic Thought of the Week:  Jewish guy to his Mexican wife: "Oy vey, Maria!"
  • I cannot fathom why anyone who has seen a recent documentary on prison life (a cable TV staple) could still favor the death penalty.
  • Forget the images from old movies; the overcrowding and vicious gangs in today’s Big Houses are two reasons more and more Death Row denizens are abandoning appeals and actually welcoming the "ultimate punishment."
  • I wonder if any condemned prisoners ever had the chutzpah to send their last meal back to the kitchen.  ("You call this a steak?  I’m never eating here again!")
  • Obituary Headline Nickname O' The Week:  "Kel-Dog."  As in Kelly W. "Kel-Dog" Reed (Green Bay Press-Gazette obituary, April 3, 2011).  R.I.P. Mr. Reed.
  • Twenty-third entry in the Wisconsin Town I Didn't Know Existed Until I Saw it Mentioned in a Newspaper Obituary sweepstakes:  Hilbert, Wis.  (R.I.P.,  Robert George Benschawel Sr., Green Bay Press-Gazette obituary, March 21, 2011.)  Previous entries: Athelstane, Walhain, Duck Creek, Breed, Anston, Sobieski, Amberg, Osseo, Angelica, Brazeau, Waukechon, Sugar Camp, Kossuth, Lessor, Kunesh, Pulcifer, Cato, Florence, Greenleaf, Eaton, Poygan and Hofa Park.
  • Jim's Book Pick of the Week:  "Byte-sized Television/Create Your Own TV Series for the Internet," by Ross Brown.
  • Today's Latin lesson: Res in speculum es propinquus quam they videor. ("Objects in the mirror are closer than they appear.")