Wednesday, August 1, 2012


Rhetorical questions, questionable rhetoric and whimsical observations about the absurdities of contemporary life: 
  • What's up with all these Mitt Romney verbal gaffes?  I think it's a simple matter of having two left tongues!
  • (Definition reminder:  Gaffe:  When a politician tells the truth!)
  • Memo to all those who think that a "successful businessman like Mitt Romney" is the man to fix our economy.  Reminder, historical division:  Herbert Hoover was a very successful businessman before inheriting the Oval Office; Harry Truman's haberdashery went bankrupt before he became vice president, then president.  Which of the two is lionized today as a damned good president?
  • More Romney (and introducing SZSEZ's new Piling-On feature):  The length of Romney's 2010 federal tax return:  200 pages.
  • (And why is it up to him whether he releases all those tax returns he is  withholding--no pun intended.  Oughtta be a law that, you run for president, the IRS releases them!   That's part of the deal!)
  •  I hesitate to dignify conspiracy theorists with the word "theorists"!  In particular the ones who now insist that the James Holmes in court  in Aurora, Colo., isn't the real James Holmes but a patsy the government has put in there as part of some sinister plot. 
  • Forget dew points and barometric pressure.  The weather is ideal when you don't look to see where the thermostat is set or turn on the Weather Channel or the computer to see what the forecast is.
  • People who still say "gosh" and/or "golly" probably make up the bulk of the Reader's Digest readership.  (All due respect . . . ) (I'm just sayin'.) (Not that there's anything wrong with that!)
  • Nonsensical Idiom of the Month:  "Enough's enough!"  (Lifetime Achievement Award?)
  • Note to media:  Just as there were no "Billary" Clintons nor such person as "Brangelina," please spare us the TomKat appellation!  Now back to your regularly scheduled crapola.
  • "The real problem of humanity is the following: We have Paleolithic emotions, medieval institutions, and god-like technology."--Biologist Edward O. Wilson in the Monterey County, Calif., Herald
  • I finally figured out why there was no bug splatter on my windshield after a 100-mile trip on a hot day recently.  The insects were obviously staying indoors as much as possible, drinking plenty of  fluids and . . .  You know, just as they counsel us on TV about 400 times each summer.
  • How would the news channels fill their air time without all the apologies from politicians and other prominent persons that we hear on an almost-daily basis?  (Can the Apology Channel be far behind?   "All apologies, all the time.")
  • Another Media Word (a word you see or hear only in news reports and never hear a normal person use in real life):  "Retinue."
  • I just came down with the dreaded East Nile Virus.  I was bitten by a gay mosquito!
  • What do Telly Savalas, Dyan Cannon, Peter Falk, Cloris Leachman, James Caan, Robert Redford and Rip Torn have in common--besides being actors?  Answer:  All of them played supporting roles in various episodes of "The Untouchables" (1959-1963).
  • SZSEZ's Faded Word of the Week:  Reprobate.
  • SZSEZ's Book Title of the Week:  "Zoobiquity. What animals can teach us about health and the science of healing," by Barbara Hatterson-Horoqitz, M.D., and Kathryn Bowers.
  • Those rapid-fire/hyper-verbose, amphetaminic-sounding Discover Card commercials --complete with jingly/jangly cowbell accompaniment adding the clamor--that run about 10 times an hour get my vote as the most annoying TV ad in recent memory.  Even more so than the ones in which the pitchman (or pitchwoman) knocks on the "inside" of your TV screen.  Or the ones in which toddlers speak in deep male adult voices.
  •  (And how do they get those male-enhancement ads on in prime time and during sports events that play in afternoon and early evening? When the moment is right--and it is right right now--take those tacky commercials off the air.)
  • Strange-ism but Truism of the Week: Charlie Chaplin once entered a Charlie Chaplin Lookalike Contest in a theater in San Francisco. . . and lost.  (That's more believable in San Francisco than it would be anywhere else!)
  • "Television enables you to be entertained in your home by people you wouldn't have in your home."--David Frost
  • You know you're talking to an old person when they refer to the nearby Citgo or Shell as "a filling station."
  • I fearlessly predict this winter will see a lot of new vegetarians.  Many new vegetarians.  Why?  If the drought is half as bad as the experts say it is, one of the results will be . . .  ground beef, $10 a pound! You read it here first.
  • Any chance Fred Willard and Pee-Wee Herman can get an act together?  I know the heyday of comedy teams has passed, but there's real potential (not to mention common ground) for this duo!
  • Obituary Headline Nickname of the Week: "Wimpy."  As in Clarence "Wimpy" Wessely  (Green Bay Press -Gazette obituary, June 9, 2012.  (R.I.P., Mr. Wessely.)
  • Forty-first entry in the Wisconsin Town I Didn't Know Existed Until I Saw it Mentioned in a Newspaper Obituary sweepstakes:  Kelly Lake, Wis.  (R.I.P., David "Nubby" Ruch, Green Bay Press-Gazette obituary, March 15, 2012.)  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, Hofa Park, Hilbert, Hollandtown, Beaufort, Glennie, Harshaw, Bessemer, Crooked Lake, Tigerton, Goodman, Readstown, Dousman., Butternut, Montpelier, Cecil, Red River, Gillet, King and Laona.
  • Today's Latin lesson:  Vis frixums cum quod?  ("You want fries with that?)