Wednesday, March 2, 2016


By Jim Szantor

Rhetorical questions, questionable rhetoric, and whimsical observations
 about the absurdities of contemporary life
  • I've found a strange omission in all of Donald Trump's books:  No Chapter 11!
  • Which Jackie Gleason character does Donald Trump most resemble?
  • (a) Ralph Kramden
  • (b) Reggie Van Gleason
  • (c) Charlie the Loudmouth 
  • (d) An amalgam of all of the above!
  • The just-completed sturgeon spearing season in northern Wisconsin ended with about one third of last year's catch (blamed on murky water).   But if Donald Trump is elected, I'm sure he'd say, "Everybody's gonna get one"  (unless you're Mexican, of course, in which case you won't be here.)
  • 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.
  • Enough with the political "debates" already?   They don't debate the issues so much as trade insults or sling allegations of past misbehavior at each other in addition to launching into rote recitations of pet talking points.  Given a choice between having to watch a debate and having a root canal, I'm going to the dentist.  At least there you've got the anesthetic!
  • Have you been following the exploits of the so-called "Affluenza Teen"?  Affluenza.  There apparently is a vaccine to prevent affluence, and, if I in fact have received it, can attest that it's very effective!
  • The Food Report:  
  • This  just  in:  Researchers in Germany found that eating while blindfolded caused people to eat less and feel full faster than those who could see their food. Visual deprivation apparently reduces the pleasure of eating and triggers innate fears that food may be rotten.  (Maybe Jenny Craig will change its name to Helen Keller.  You know, whatever works!)
  • Newspaper ad:  "You're invited to a Free Gourmet Dinner--Exclusively for Women with Low Thyroid."   (Let's see:  Tuesday--Mexican night; Wednesday--Stir-Fry Night; and Thursday--Low-Thyroid Gals Night Out!  Got it.)
  • jimjustsaying's Party Ice-Breaker of the Week:  "Say [actual partygoer's name here], did you know that when bananas ripen, the small, round black spots that cover their skin is caused by an enzyme known as tyrosinase?"
  • How 'bout them apples?  I seem to encounter a new variety of apple every time I'm in a grocery store, and the last time was no exception:  In fact, I found three such specimens--Lady Alice, Pinata and Tentation (sic)--that neither I nor my wife had ever seen before.  Send your strange apple sightings to and win valuable prizes!
  •  "Fame simply means millions of people have the wrong idea of who you are."-- Erica Jong
  • Three things I've never cleaned:  A rifle, a fish, an oven.
  • TV irritant:   Talk-show hosts guesting on other talk shows!  Does Jimmy Kimmel so really need the exposure, after being on the air 5 hours a week on his own show, that Jimmy Fallon has to have him on?  Or vice versa.  And what would Fallon and Seth Meyer and their brethren do for guests if they couldn't parade all of their former "Saturday Night Live" compatriots before us week after week?  Too clubby, too clannish, too inside-jokey.  
  • I can't remember the last time I saw someone wearing cufflinks, spats or a pocket watch.
  • Comments on the typecasting trap from Francis Ford Coppola, himself a "victim" because of his "Godfather" success:  "George [Lucas] is a kind of a genius, but I think it's a pity he got so absorbed in that ["Star Wars"] franchise.   . . .  "Star Wars" cost us 10 new George Lucas films that would have been wonderful." (From a recent Vanity Fair interview.)
  • Redundancy Patrol:  "each and every," "welcome in" and "price point."
  • "We always overestimate the change that will occur in the next two years and underestimate the change that will occur in the next 10."--Bill Gates
  • jimjustsaying's Word of the Week That Doesn't Exist But Should:  "Cheeriomagnetization." The tendency of the last four or five Cheerios in the bowl to cling together for survival.
  • Runnerup:  "Vegeludes":  Individual peas or kernels of corn that you end up chasing all over the plate.  (Both from "More Sniglets," Rich Hall and Friends.)
  • Today’s Word Never Uttered Outside the Context of a Nursery Rhyme: “porridge.”  As in, “Who’s been eating my porridge?” asked the bear. 
  • Few things in life are more satisfying than an easily peeled hard-boiled egg or plugging the charger into your device the right way the first time.
  • Newspaper Obituary Headline Nickname of the Month:  "Baldy."  As in Gerald K. "Baldy" Lois, Kenosha (Wis.) News, Dec. 3, 2015.  R.I.P., Mr. Lois.
  • Sixty-ninth Wisconsin Town I Didn't Know Existed Until I Saw It Mentioned in a Green Bay Press-Gazette Obituary:  Armstrong Creek, Wis.. (R.I.P., Lee Austin Destache, Green Bay Press-Gazette obituary, Nov. 11, 2015).  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, Laona, Kelly Lake, Glenmore, Tonet, Stiles, Morrison, Dunbar, Askeaton, Wild Rose. Neopit, Ellisville, Pickett, Flintville,  Forest Junction, Thiry Daems, Black Creek,  Mountain, Ledgeview, Lunds, Suring, Lakewood, Beaver, Cloverleaf Lakes, Krakow,  Pella, Townsend, Vandenbroek, Coleman and Spruce.
  • Today's Latin Lesson:  Totus res in temperantia--omprehendo temperantia.  ("All things in moderation--including moderation!")

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