Wednesday, January 26, 2022


                                                               By Jim Szantor 

Rhetorical questions, questionable rhetoric and whimsical observations 
about the absurdities of contemporary life

  • Jean-Paul Sartre really hit the nail on the head when he said, “Three o’clock is always too late or too early for anything you want to do.”
  •  “They gave me a clean bill of health!”  No such thing; everybody’s got something!  (Including the mole you don’t know you have that could kill you in six months.)
  • And then there are the folks who “were given 6 months to live” . . . and who lived 20 or more years.  Bottom line:  Medicine is an art, not a science.  And aren’t doctors becoming more and more de facto puppets of Big Pharma?  (“Ask your doctor if overpriced heavily advertised drugs with alarming side effects are right for you.”)
  • I always do a double take when I see an obituary of someone I don’t know but who has an M.D. after his or her name . . . at like, age 57. No one lives forever, but my illogical gut reaction usually is: “Dead?  A doctor?” (Most likely reason:  Lost the genetic lottery.)
  • Got your President's Day planned yet?  I’m proposing a Vice President's Day.  You'd still have to go to work, but you wouldn't have to do anything. (And nobody would notice whether you were there or not.)
  • What is your favorite memory of the Aaron Rodgers era?  (QBs, like baseball managers and presidents, commonly get too much credit when things go well and too much blame when things go wrong.  Myriad other factors come into play---always.)
  • Good thing the Green Bay Packers were the Top Seed and earned the “coveted” bye week, right?  Wrong! The other “lucky” bye team, the Tennessee Titans, also lost their first playoff game. Bye bye! Better "luck" next time.
  • jimjustsaying’s Internet Click-Bait Items of the Month: Hollywood's biggest bookworms  . . . Hidden features on airplanes you never knew existed . . .Ask for these secret menu items at your favorite restaurants . . . 20 eerie facts about life in North Korea . . . 13 signs you're smarter than you realize . . . Secrets your plumber won't tell you . . . Surprising items you can put in the washing machine . . . What your sleep position reveals about your personality . . .  38 secrets your hair stylist won't tell you . . . Hairstyles for gray hair . . .  9 myths about menopause debunked by experts . . .  Remember Fabio?  Try not go gasp when you see him now.
  • Headline: “New study puts Wisconsin as 6th drunkest state.”  (On the short list for new license plate slogan: “Shitfaced and proud!”)
  • Unintentional (I think) humor from Harvard dream researcher Deirdre Barrett, discussing the meaning of dreams:
  • Not all dreams are meaningful, she says, adding that much of their content can be “trivial or repetitive.”  In that way, dreams can be similar to thoughts we have when we’re awake, which aren’t always meaningful, either, she said.  (Very true in my case.)
  • “A patriot is a person who receives a parking ticket and rejoices that the system works.”—Journalist Bill Vaughn, Forbes
  • Superimposed on Facebook over a portrait of Donald Trump:
  • “It was miraculous. It was almost no trick at all, he saw, to turn vice into virtue and slander into truth, impotence into abstinence, arrogance into humility, plunder into philanthropy, thievery into honor, blasphemy into wisdom, brutality into patriotism, and sadism into justice. Anybody could do it; it required no brains at all. It merely required no character.”—Joseph Heller, “Catch-22”
  • Do animals get their blood pressure taken?  Is it possible to do that?  Is it a "silent killer" for them too?
  • Shocking fact disclosed by psychotherapist Philip Chard on our relentless 24/7/365 culture:  Sleep-deprived, chronically stressed and overworked Americans regularly leave---wait for it—over a half-billion vacation days unused every year.
  • jimjustsaying’s Word That Doesn’t Exist But Should of the Week: “Twinkidue.” n.  The residue on the inside of the wrapper that every junk food addict eventually gets to.—"More Sniglets,” Rich Hall and Friends.
  • What do Dag Henrik Esrum-Hellerup and Guglielmo Baldini have in common?  Both classical “composers” are the only known hoax entries in the massive “Grove Dictionary of Music,” which contains close to 30,000 articles.
  • (Point of pride/shameless plug:  I’m quoted more than 100 times in said volume, at last count, but cannot take credit or blame for any of the ersatz entries, which have since been excised with the help of eagle-eyed musicologists.)
  • You Can’t Make This Up Dept.:  Taco Bell has launched the Taco Lover’s Pass, "a digital taco subscription service."
  • Through the chain's app, for $10, you can get one of seven different "iconic tacos" a day for 30 consecutive days. That's a 33¢ per taco.
  • Given that fast food might be the only business with more copycats than media, look for more "subscription" promotions soon.
  • “It is fatal to be a man or woman pure and simple.  One must be a woman-manly or a man-womanly.”—Virginia Woolf in “A Room of One’s Own.”
  • Memo to Media:  If someone is legendary, saying so is superfluous.  As in the recent headline “Legendary ‘Picture Show’ Director Peter Bogdanovich dead at 82.”  If you didn’t know of him, “legendary” doesn’t really add much.  That’s like saying “Singer Frank Sinatra."  (Oh, so that's what he was.  Who knew?)
  • “He pursued his lips and looked around, as if for help.”—Pittsburgh (Pa.) Press, via “Still More Press Boners,” by Earle Tempel.
  • Did you know that Milwaukee once had four different streets named Highland? 
  • I’m tired of hearing about how the Democrats “fixed” the 2020 presidential election.  The way that party’s circular firing squad operates these days, they probably couldn’t fix a ham sandwich if you gave them the ham, the bread and explicit instructions.  Full stop!
  • I like a lot of Joe Biden’s ideas, voted for him.  But too often he comes off sounding like a condo time-share salesman!   Presidential?  Hardly.  
  • Drudging Around:  Stillborn baby being prepped for burial found to be alive . . . Who gets pup after divorce?  Spain starts shared custody . . . State trooper accidentally shoots and kills brother when responding to call for backup . . . Paramedic stole vax cards from work, sold them to unjabbed buyers . . . Serial killer BTK describes himself as “a good person who did some bad things.” . . . Cows given VR headsets to reduce anxiety, increase milk . . . LAPD cops ignore robbery in progress to play “Pokemon Go” . . . Supply chain issues leave new homes without garage doors, gutters . . . Man went looking for date that would infect him . . . Study:  Face masks making people look MORE attractive . . . Diocese apologizes for asking if abuse victims gay, enjoyed sex encounters with priest! . . . Pastor rubs spit over brother’s face to show “visions from God” during sermon . . . Calf born with three eyes, four nostrils, and people line up to worship it . . . UPDATE:  Daily glass of wine NOT good for you! . . .  “Divine intervention”: Man carrying own severed arm saved . . . Delta passenger takes off pants, attacks passenger . . . (Thanks as always to Matt Drudge and his merry band of aggregators for this month's jaw-droppers.)
  • Redundancy patrol: "General public," "unsolved mystery," "mass exodus."
  • jimjustsaying’s Classified Ad of the Month:  GUARANTEED BUFFALO AND ELK HUNTS in the Black Hills.  Elk hunts: cows, $2,300; bulls, $2,900.  Buffalo hunts:  cows, $2,100; bulls starting at $3,100. 605-391-4646.
  • (The funniest part--if any of this is funny--is that this was listed under MISCELLANEOUS.  Then again, I guess they didn’t have a Meaningless Slaughter of Innocent Animals category.)
  • jimjustsaying’s Obituary Headline Nickname of the Month: “Serpico 1%er.” As  in, David C. “Serpico 1%er” Pradarelli, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Dec. 5, 2021.
  • Overheard:  "It's "i" before "e," except after "c" and, of course, after "w," as in Budweiser."
  • Whatever happened to Gilbert Gottfried?
  • Today’s Latin Lesson:  Quisquam seen longinquus imperium? ("Anyone seen the remote control?")
  • (Thanks to my able assistants--Miss Information, Rick Shaw and Hugh Briss. And as always, please remember that I don’t always agree with everything I say.)

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