Thursday, July 2, 2015


By Jim Szantor

Rhetorical questions, questionable rhetoric, and whimsical observations about the absurdities of contemporary life  
  • Yes, it's sadly true--there really is nothing new under the sun.  I mean, whoever thought beheadings would be making  a comeback?   (Can tarring and feathering be far behind?  Stay tuned.)  
  • It will be interesting to see if the Catholic Church changes its position on performing same-sex marriages when (not if) its tax-exempt status is challenged.  (We'll see which principles/priorities prevail!)
  • Is is just me, or isn't pink-skinned, white-haired Bill Clinton looking more Albino-like with each passing press conference?  (Not that there's anything wrong with that;  I'mjustsayin'.)  Kind of a  strange transformation for  our self-styled "first black president."  
  • How bad is your life going if you turned down for a Wal-Mart greeter job  (if "job" is really that applicable a term)?   How does Target survive without them?  
  • Memo to pundits and headline writers:  Stop calling the members of the highest court in the land The Supremes!  Because (a) doing so  trivializes an important bulwark of our government,  and (b) if there hadn't been a popular Motown group of the same name, you wouldn't be doing it.  Sometimes there's such a thing as being too "clever" by half.  
  • "Rome wasn't born in a day."--Former major-league baseball player Johnny Logan
  • jimjustsaying's Party Ice-Breaker of the Week:  "Say (actual partygoer's name here), did you know that the average American woman now weighs 166.2 pounds, about the same as the average American man weighed in the early 1960s?   Over the same time period, U.S. men have gained nearly 30 pounds, from 166.3 in the ’60s to 195.5 today.  (Thanks to for this alarming statistic.)
  • I think it's time for an AILU--American Indecent Liberties Union.
  • Poker has become so popular, young people are even getting into it.  What's next? The Little League World Series of Poker?  ("I'll see your Skittles and raise you three M&M two-packs.")
  • jimjustsaying's Techno Term of the Month:  Forensic Holodeck.  An immersive 3-D simulation of a crime scene, viewed through an Oculus Rift headset, Wired magazine reports.  
  • Named after "Star Trek's" simulated reality chamber, this device will help judges and juries picture bullet trajectories and see crimes from victims' and suspects' perspectives.  (Kind of hard to work into a conversation, but there you have it!)
  • Speaking of crime, there is this police imponderable:  Why is it that those foot chases you see on Fox TV's "Cops"  invariably have an out-of-shape cop catching up to and tackling a guy who looks like a marathon runner?  Uncanny.  But it happens all the time.
  • Speaking of law enforcement, haven't we become an investigation-happy world?  Two elderly terminal cancer patients are found dead in an obvious murder-suicide.  Yet  . . .  "the investigation is ongoing."  What's to investigate?  Where the shooter bought the gun?  Who cares?  We have two dead people with an already-documented history of the Bad Disease.  So, nothing to investigate here, folks, just move on.  
  • Then there was the "second black box" hysteria from that GermanWings tragedy--you know, the one in which a pilot made the skies decidedly unfriendly by purposely flying his plane into a mountain, killing 150 people.   
  • Even if undamaged, what can the box possibly reveal that (a) we don't already know and (b) what possible difference would it make?  The hydraulic system--even if faulty--didn't make his girlfriend jilt him and turn him suicidal. Yet . . . "The investigation is ongoing."   
  • (The investigation business must be immensely profitable to someone because there is a lot of superfluous investigating taking place.  Or else the investigators want us to think our tax dollars are "at work" when, in reality, they are most likely being wasted.)
  • "There are no new truths, but only truths that have not been recognized by those who have perceived them without noticing!"--Mary McCarthy, "The Vita Activa"
  • Newspaper Obituary Headline Nickname of the Month:  "TV Duke."  As in Patrick "TV Duke" Duchac, Kenosha (Wis.) News obituary, June 10, 2015.  R.I.P., Mr. Duchac.
  • jimjustsaying's Product of the Week:  Orcon LB-C1500 Live Ladybugs, Approximately 1,500 Count, $14.89.
  • Who really uses all that extraneous stuff on those elaborate watches they make these days?  And how did I manage to lose 90 pounds and keep 80 of it off for 10 years without a Fitbit?
  • Believe It or Not Dept.: A Christian church-design company, The Week magazine reports, has proposed building McDonald’s restaurants inside churches to attract more worshippers. Lux Dei Design (see their Web site) says its “McMass Project” will “draw a wider audience to the church” and spread “the message of Christ’s love.”  (Do you want fries with that message?)  
  • jimjustsaying's Faded Phrase of the Week:  "Put on the feedbag."
  • It would be easier to cure cancer and achieve a lasting peace in the Middle East  than to get people to stop using Google as a verb, to stop mispronouncing "asterisk" and to refrain from saying "reason why," "VIN number" or "ATM machine."
  • Neutron peas:  n.  Tiny green objects in frozen dinners that remain frozen even when the rest of the food has been microwaved beyond recognition.--"More Sniglets (any word that doesn't appear in the dictionary, but should)."--Rich Hall & Friends
  • Is it just me, or are you also not getting as many free return-address labels in the mail these days?  
  • Today's Latin Lesson: Haud, muneris, illic nusquam in vehiculum vos postulo ut fatigo super. ("No, officer, there's nothing in the car you need to be concerned about.")

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