Saturday, December 21, 2019


By Jim Szantor

Rhetorical questions, questionable rhetoric and whimsical observations 
about the absurdities of contemporary life
  • What is it about romaine lettuce that seems to make it a magnet for E.coli bacteria?
  • (There are about 20 different varieties  of lettuce, but romaine seems to be the leader in the clubhouse in the contamination sweepstakes.)
  • Every time I hear someone say these days--and it happens almost daily, whether the subject is what the stock market will do in response to this or that development or what the latest Trumpian action will produce--that something  "is baked in the cake," or, simply, "baked in," I want to throw a pie in that person's face.
  • Who starts these things?  All of a sudden, some phrase or term pops up and spreads like kudzu.  (Can you bake kudzu?  Probably, but who would want to?)
  • Good name for a new casino:  Luck Dynasty.
  • Gay marriage at some point will inevitably yield gay divorces.  Therefore, what would be a possible grounds for divorce in a gay marriage?   Irreconcilable sameness?
  • I don't have any animals at home, but I do have a lot of pet peeves!
  • Message to Big Pharma, whose latest obsession seems to be selling testosterone-boosting products to any male over age 10:  Aging is not a disease, it's a process.  If aging is a disease, then infancy is a disease.
  • I have the feeling that the 2010s will be the first decade in history that will never undergo a revival.  I also have the feeling that most people don't know that the 2010s won't be over for another year yet!  (There was no Year Zero; the "2010s" started on Jan. 1, 2011. So there's probably a better name for the decade, but I don't know if the decade deserves one.)
  • I dreamt that the Moscow Ballet performed "Dancing With the Czars."
  •  jimjustsaying's Party Ice-Breaker of the Week:  "Say [actual partygoer's name here], did you know that the Waffle House Index is a term actually used by meteorologists?"
  • It actually is.  The Federal Emergency Management Agency does use information from several national chains to help determine how hard an area has been affected by a weather event. The Waffle House, a restaurant that is open 24/7, is one of them. The chain prides itself on remaining open following natural disasters, which requires a lot of planning by management, so if a Waffle House is closed, conditions in that area must be really bad.  During Houston’s encounter with Harvey, some Waffle Houses had to shut down, but the vast majority stayed open.  The term Waffle House Index was coined by FEMA Director W. Craig Fugate in 2011.--Tom Skilling, Chicago Tribune's "Ask Tom Why"
  • True terror is to wake up one morning and discover that your high school class is running the country.”--Kurt Vonnegut
  • jimjustsaying's Party Ice-Breaker of the Month:  "Say [actual party-goer's name here], did you know that the music for "Citizen Kane" and "Taxi Driver" was composed by the same man?  Yes, and that would be Bernard Hermann."  He was nominated for an Academy Award for both.
  •  "I am not afraid of an army of lions led by a sheep; I am afraid of an army of sheep led by a lion."-- Alexander the Great, quoted in the LaGrange, Ga., Daily News.  (I guess Mr. Great is a regular contributor to that small-town newspaper.   Who knew?)
  • Redundancy Patrol, Menu Division:   Baked Lasagna.  Is there any other kind?  (Let's see--let's take some ground beef, some lasagna noodles and some ricotta cheese and throw it into a pot of boiling water and see how it comes out.)
  • "She is a friendly little dog," said one woman with a short tail and a large brown spot on her hind leg."--Florence (Colo.) Citizen, via "Still More Press Boners," by Earle Tempel.
  • jimjustsaying's Word That Doesn't Exist But Should of the Month:  Scotchrotor.  n.  The wheel left behind when all the cellophane tape is used up.--"Unexplained Sniglets of the Universe," Rich Hall and Friends.
  • "Americans have always been able to handle austerity and even adversity. Prosperity is what is doing us in."--James Reston
  • Web sites are like sex:  When you interact with one, you're interacting with every Web site that that Web site has ever interacted with.
  • Today's Latin Lesson:  Bono non omnino Offer participating Locusta Rubrum. ("Offer good only at all participating Red Lobster.")

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