Monday, May 29, 2006

Stupid Contest! Indulge in Stupidity, Folks!

I had an idea.

*silence...sounds of cats walking on carpet...bags of potatoes falling in neighboring apartment*

Seriously. I know this is highly unorthodox, given that this Blog is dedicated to the proliferation of stupidity and all, but this is a good one, and it has its roots in stupidity. Very, very deep roots.

I'm going to host a Contest of Stupidness, and the subject will be: "Stupid Car Accident Stories". I'm sure that I'm not the only one who's fallen asleep and rolled his car into a ditch, or driven a delivery truck through a bank's drive-thru only to find that the building's overhang was four inches too low, or backed into a tree.

What? Well, why don't you shut up?

Anyway, the rules, stipulations, guidelines, flavors...of this contest will be as follows:
  • The Contest starts today, and ends a week from now.
  • Entries shall be emailed to: with "Stupid Car Accident Story" as the email's Subject.
  • Entries must be Stupid.
  • Pictures are welcome, but not required.
  • I will judge the stupidity and hilarity of the Entries myself, as I'm most experienced with doing stupid things with my car. I shall forward all of the Entries to my cohorts here at Blog of Stupid for their input, however. Keep this in mind, as this means that three people will be laughing at your bonehead maneuver.
  • Any Entries submitted after the contests ends will merely be laughed at, and shall not be eligible for the Prize.
  • If you're interested in receiving the Prize, please include with your Entry the resolution you'd like your background image to be.
The winner will receive a custom Blog of Stupid desktop background graphic in the 800x600, 1024x768, know. Whatever the next step up is. I can compensate for widescreen monitors too, if need be. Just gimme your rez!

Since this is actually a cheap attempt on my part to grab more traffic for the Blog, the winner of the Contest will also have their Stupid Car Accident Story summarized and posted (with picture, if applicable) right here on the Blog of Stupid, complete with traffic-generating link back to YOUR blog! If you've got one!

To kick things off, here's my own Stupid Car Accident Story.


I live in an apartment complex where each unit gets its own garage with a spiffy electric opener. The rules state that you must park your car in your garage, and any room left over may be used as storage, but your car has to go in first. This doesn't stop people from filling their garages with busted water heaters, moldy old sofas, lamps, bird cages, piles of shoes, children...whatever...and then filling the parking lot with their stupid cars.

Not that I'm bitter.

That's not the point anyway, doubtlessly stupid as it is. What I did to my car, visible in the picture above, is the direct result of my being stupid. Not only stupid, but stupid in an attempt to be slick! This has the effect of amplifying ambient stupidity to the point where your own mother would laugh at you. Which she did.

The garage doors are operated from the outside by a RF transmitter, which you put in your car and lose under the seats, or by a keyed switch on the side of the door frame. When facing the garage door head-on, this switch is at about shoulder height, on a plane perpendicular to the door. I could reach it if I leaned out my car's window. This is called "foreshadowing," and it is the mark of a good writer.

My father and I split the rent evenly, despite the fact that I have the bigger bedroom. We'd compensated for this by agreeing that he'd get to use the garage. After a couple months, he'd apparently decided that he didn't want to bother with the garage and all its associated blind spots and waiting for the door. So I took it over. Fearing that he'd decide he wanted it back if I said anything to remind him, I never asked him if I could have the RF door opener. So I opened the door by key, and shut it by key. This required that I engage in a laborious procedure wherein I walked to the door, opened it by turning my key, backed my car out, then got out and closed the door. Pain.

My solution? Leave the key in the switch while I backed the car out. This way I could reach out my window, turn the key and start the door on its downward journey, and then yank my keys out and reverse quickly the rest of the way out of the garage before the door hit me on the hood. This is more foreshadowing.

One horrible day, I had turned my wheel to the right in order to swing the front end of the car closer to the key switch, and forgot to straighten the wheels when I made my mad backwards dash out of door range. This resulted in the left corner of my car slamming into the edge of the doorway and catching there. I had no time to go forward, no remote opener to halt the door, and the car wouldn't budge in reverse, so the door hit me on the hood. It made a small, almost unnoticeable dent.

Hitting the doorway, on the other hand, ripped my headlight out and scraped up the fender pretty good. Had a local garage fix it up for fifty bucks, and most of the damage was done to my ego. My girlfriend laughed at me a little too. After I got done swearing, I was able to laugh at it myself.

And now you can too!


Good luck, Brothers in Stupidity! Let the Contest begin! Any questions? Leave a comment!

Nice Work, If You Can Get It

I found this site,, and quickly surmised that stupid people could have lots of fun with it. I felt it would be wise to try the site out before I posted anything about it, just to make sure it was safe for all you readers out there in cyberville.

Saturday, May 27, 2006

The Old Man and the Car Dealership

My fellow Blogger has posted a couple of posts now centering around a certain Old Man. This Old Man is of the crusty sort, which invariably makes him interesting, nuanced, and crotchety. I will now tell another tale. Another chapter in the already full life of---

"Shut up boy. Your fancy talk's givin' me gas."

Oop. Well, why don't I just get started, huh?

"You do that."


The Old Man and the Car Dealership

The corner of Humblebum and Cornwonk formed a busy intersection in the Old Man's town. It was a pretty town of about twenty thousand, and had a thriving downtown business district. The streets were clean, the motorists on them polite and unhurried. It was the beginning of a particularly idyllic vernal equinox, and the region's songbirds were returning.

The Old Man put away his air rifle.

"Time t'mosey on down to the infernal whatever-it-is, I reckon," mumbled the Old Man as he tossed his beat up old gun lovingly down the basement stairs. It clattered to rest somewhere on the dark tiled floor, and the Old Man secretly hoped it would break so he could complain about it later.

"Now whur's my durn-blasted chair?"

When the Old Man found his rickety aluminum lawn chair with the cactuses on it, he gave it a sound thrashing with his cane for being so hard to locate.

"That'll teach ya t'sass me, y'moldy old whathaveyou!"

It was the Old Man's habit on nice days to drag his chair out to the intersection of Humblebum and Cornwonk to yell at cars. He was especially fond of yelling at green ones.

"Green cars is the work of the devil!" he cawed, shaking a gnarled fist at a stop sign. He stared the sign down, then continued his determined shuffle. "Rotten octagons. Think they's so important. Hmph!"

Today was different. His view down the road to his right (Humblebum) was blocked. The Old Man was vexed and annoyed. He threw his chair onto the lawn in front of the car dealership, and stormed slowly to the building's glass double doors.

"Hey! You there! Fat guy with the whaddyacallit! The grub-bag! Open these heckblasted doors, or I'll whomp you proper!" He poked the doors with his cane. His cane had a silver duck head on the handle end. It was rubber on the pointy end, and it made an ominous squeaking on the glass. The man on the inside carrying a briefcase paused, stared, and then walked to the doors and pushed one open.

"Can I hel--"

"Like fire you can! Fetch me the manager of this establishment, or I'll commence a-whompin your sorry--"

"Sir, are you okay? Can I--"

"Don't innerupt me! 'Tain't polite. I just wanted to warn you all before I set loose on them gasbags what's been blockin' my view. They gotta go, and they's gonna go!"

The salesman, whose name was Dennis, stepped back a bit. "Gasbags?"

"Don't give me nunna yer monkey sauce, son. One'a you hotshots fastened 'em on to yer autocars! To the aerials! W
hat fer AM ray-dee-oh!"

"The...the balloons?"

"Dirigibles! Lil' tiny dirigibles on strings! Don't get fancy with me, on account'a you're wearin' a suit, and I ain't. I don't cotton to that attitude, boy."

The Old Man peered around Dennis, and into the showroom. He caught the salesman a sharp rap on the shin. He changed his mind.

"I changed my mind! Jag me a ride in that there auto-mobile, and I'll fix up them gasbags later, eh?" He waved his duck cane at a black Mazda RX-8. A horseshoe fell out of his pocket and hit the floor with a clang. Dennis looked in the direction the wavering cane indicated.

"The RX-8? want a ride?" This guy was either a nutty billionaire, or just plan nuts. Giving the old man a lookover, noting the slouch hat, the bedroom slippers and the spotless, immaculately tailored bathrobe, he decided to take a chance on the former assumption.

"Less gummin' and more brummin'!" said the Old Man, and made engine noises with his mouth. Old Man spit flew in a fine mist. Dennis went to get the keys to the sports car. He returned to the showroom to find the Old Man prodding the car's taillights with his cane's rubber tip.

"Where do ya crank this old sausage? Your modern cars... Bah!"

"You don't have to crank this model, sir. If you'd allow me to--"

"Allow nuthin'! Y'know what? You kin keep yer modern deviltry to yourself, fatty! I've had enough of this dill puckery, and I'm gettin' all itchy again. Git them doors fer me!"

Dennis recieved a parting whack on the shin from the cane as the Old Man bumbled from the building. As the door hissed shut, Dennis watched in dumbstruck fascination as the Old Man began to bite through the balloons' strings. The doors were double-paned glass, but muffled rantings still leaked into the showroom.

"Mumble grumble donkey sausage... grumble! Whut the... mumble... doo? Dirigibles! Mumblemumble...gasbags! Infernal mumble blockin'..."


I hope I've represented his tale with sufficient accuracy. For as nuanced and complex an individual as the Old Man demands a methodical approach.

"Methodical my wattles! Git off that glowin' typewriter boy, and fetch me up some crackers!"

Oop. Get right on that.

The Old Man and the Woman

The sky was a deep blue, the kind of color that seemed to draw you into its depths as you stared up into it. The temperature hovered around seventy degrees and humidity was nowhere to be found. No mosquitoes buzzed around ears and even the flies were keeping their distance. In short, it was a perfect day, the kind of day that lifted the spirits of even the dourest personalities.

“Gol-darn crap of a horseshoe! Must be bent,” the Old Man said, as his latest shot landed several inches left of the post. He bent down to pick up the next horseshoe. For the last twenty minutes, he and one of his many grandsons had been battling it out on the field of honor. The Old Man hated to lose at anything, especially horseshoes.

“We can quit if you’re getting tired, Gramps,” the grandson offered kindly.

“Ha!” The Old Man cackled maniacally. “Don’t think yer gonna git out of this so easy, you young pervert. You know I’m about to whip ya’ and yer tryin’ to weasel yer way out of bein’ humiliated. Nope, ain’t gonna work.” He drew back his arm and delivered a bullet of a shot that sent the horseshoe whirring around the metal post, before dropping to the dirt. “A ringer! Let’s see ya’ top that!”

The grandson picked up his next horseshoe and aimed carefully. The Old Man began to heckle him, trying to break his concentration.

“You know grandmother didn’t like you to use those words, Gramps,” the grandson reminded him.

“Eh? Who?”

“Grandmother. Your late wife?”

“Oh! Esmeralda! God rest her. Now, shoot, before I come over there and ram that horseshoe down your dang throat.”

The grandson tossed the horseshoe, but was a foot short of the post. The Old Man hooted derisively. “You throw like a…”

“Do you ever miss her, Gramps?” the grandson asked. He waited for a response, but the Old Man was staring off into the distance. The grandson kept silent, thinking that the Old Man was remembering those happy, bygone days he had spent with his dear wife. After a moment, he realized that the Old Man was instead looking intently at someone walking past the horseshoe pit.

“Gol-ding, look at that,” the Old Man said reverently. “Gimme my blood pressure medsin, boy.”

“Gramps! Remember your dearly departed wife!”

The Old Man snorted. “She’d want me to have a good time.”

“She was a fine woman,” the grandson sighed, remembering his sweet-natured, silver-haired grandmother.

“Yep,” the Old Man replied eagerly. “An’ she was a blonde, too!”

The grandson frowned. “I was referring to Grandma.”


“Grandmother! Your late wife?”

“God rest her.” The Old Man leaned forward, a forgotten horseshoe dangling from his right hand, and squinted against the sunlight. “Say, that one over there ain’t bad, neither.”

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Beeny Babies

Before you even think about wandering down to the "indulge in stupidity" link, I know I spelled "beeny" funny. That was intentional. I don't want to get sued by legume-filled corporate execs who may be very sensitive about their product.

Just felt I should clear that up, coming as this post does on the tail of one about proper grammar and spelling.

I'm sure most of you over the age of 10 remember the Beeny Baby craze that oozed through the nation awhile back. There are probably thousands of die-hard collectors still out there trying to get ahold of the rarer ones, but at least the little sacks of grit aren't on network news anymore.

Unfortunately for those of us sensitive to insideously cute collector's items (Precocious Monuments?) the Beeny Babies all had really horrible names. Just, hack cough barf names that were printed with a little lameoid story on a heart shaped tag.

As a Professional Sarcasm Distributor (PSD), I'm gonna make another List. This time of names that those Beeny Babies should have had.

  • Crispy the Tiger
  • Snotty the Wombat
  • Crafty the Cow
  • Cheesy the Whale
  • Dippy the Dinosaur
  • Floaty the Salmon
  • Wimpy the Penguin
  • Grabby the Snake
  • Sneaky the Camel
  • Dirty the Hamster
If you time-wasters come up with any other good names, post 'em! I have a lot of places to Distribute my Sarcasm, and a few fires to set. IBYALTW!*

*I'll Bother You All Later, Time-Wasters

Monday, May 22, 2006

Grammar Ain't Everythin'

Being a professing writer, I always feel under pressure to properly utilize grammar, spelling, and sentence structure. While I feel that these are all important, I sometimes wish I could just sit down and write something without having to worry about the impression I’m giving someone about my writing abilities.

I think this holds true for a lot of professions. I’ve always thought it would be difficult to be a comedian, for example, because people would expect you to be funny all the time. You have to know, however, that there are days when this person feels anything but funny and just wants to be a jerk.

In the same vein, I sometimes feel like being anything but grammatically proper. Sometimes I want to say “ain’t,” “nothin’,” or even use a double negative.

Despite all this, I find it very distressing to browse through blogs and forums, and see all the horrible writing that exists in cyberspace. Frankly, folks, I’d be happy with mediocrity, but I seem to be finding that Instant Messenger lingo has found its way into general usage, a role it was never intended to fill.

One forum I visit on occasion has a particularly bad writer who attempts to participate. Being lazy, I don’t want to take the time to track down an actual post, so I’ll simulate one here. I promise not to exaggerate.

“i think he might nevr agree harold say to go down and get som pork rinds ROFL i do note think it is nececary to fill up thank you.”

It makes no sense, whatsoever, and yet you have to assume that this person is attempting to make a point. Let me be clear that I’m not trying to be a literary snob. I am far from perfect and realize not everyone is or wants to be a writer. In fact, I think poor grammar has its place. Country music, for example, would not exist. And what about Elvis? Can you imagine “Hound Dog” without poor grammar?

You aren’t anything except a less than desirable canine,
Constantly weeping.
You aren’t anything except a less than desirable canine,
Constantly weeping
You have yet to snare a long-eared mammal
And you have not a jocular relationship with me.

It completely ruins the song, doesn’t it? So you see, readers, I am not advocating complete and utter adherence to grammar. Just a reasonable usage of capitalization and punctuation would revolutionize the Web. Oh, and if you find any typos in this peace, I put them there on purpose. To make a point. *snicker*

Sunday, May 21, 2006

The ISP Crisis

With all the talk going around about the new press secretary at the White House and then with Pickle Weasel's post about the Intercontinental Stupid Pipeline, it got me to thinking about how a press conference concerning the ISP would go. We take you now to the Press Room at the White House, where the Press Secretary is meeting with the news media about the ISP crisis.

Press Secretary: “Ladies and gentlemen of the press, thank you for joining us today. I will do my best to answer all your asinine questions in a suitably condescending manner.
First of all, let me say a few words about the rumors that have been swirling on the Blog of Stupid for the past, oh, hour or so. Heh. I assure you that reports of there being an Intercontinental Stupid Pipeline (ISP) are completely and without question…absolutely true. The President realizes that many might feel that he needed congressional approval in order to allow a project of such scale to continue. And, yes, I said 'continue.' You see, my fine flatulent, foolscap-flailing friends, the ISP was not this administration’s doing. Did we know that it exists? The answer is 'yes.' However, we did not feel it was necessary to risk panicking the public with the news. Now I would be happy to answer your *ahem* questions. We’ll start with you, madam.”

Susan Blatherskype: “Thank you. Susan Blatherskype from the New York Slimes. How long has the ISP been in operation?”

PS: “Well, Ms. Bandersnatch…”

SB: “Blatherskype!”

PS: “Ahem, yes. Sadly, our experts were unable to track down the exact age of the ISP, but it has been around for at least as long as human history has been recorded. Looking back over time, it is now possible to see countless incidents of irresponsible ISP usage. Debtor’s prison, the Salem Witch Trials, Sonny Bono, and the invention of the cell phone have all been found to have their roots in the ISP.”

SB: “Is it dangerous?”

PS: “Sonny Bono?”

SB: “No, the ISP.”

PS: “Ah, well, if it is used irresponsibly, things could, and do, get a bit knotty. Next?”

Anton Slither: “Yes, Anton Slither from the Detroit Freak Press. I would like to know what the administration intends to do about this menace that is threatening to wipe out civilization as we know it.”

PS: “Well, I really don’t think it’s that dire, Mr. Slither. There are many fine uses for the ISP and we’d be lost without it. For instance, you’d be out of a job. Congress would doubtless be disbanded and the wombat would immediately become extinct. But to answer the question, yes, we have taken measures to keep the ISP in check.

We have discovered, through our extensive research, that the ISP only becomes truly dangerous when there is an over abundance of stupidity present in the pipeline. The solution is, of course, to make sure that enough stupidity is used to keep the levels down. To that end, we have engaged a group of stupidity experts at the Blog of Stupid, who will be responsible for keeping the ISP at a safe and useful level.

Is this to say that there will never be disasters or problems? Nay! Terrorists and other lawless types are always tapping into the ISP and making off with large quantities of unprocessed stupidity and there are occasional incidents when a leak occurs in the pipeline and raw stupidity runs out and floods an area. We are always vigilant and have made great progress in this area. The fine folks at the Blog of Stupid have done an excellent job of taking raw stupidity and turning it into something, if not useful, at least harmless and entertaining. We owe them a great debt of gratitude. No more questions, please.”

The Intercontinental Stupid Pipeline (ISP)

So, I am having a hard time lately. Actually, I'm having a ridiculously good time, but it requires me to have my brain fully engaged in non-stupid activities.

And that's a problem.

Foo Daddy and Stupid apparently have advanced levels of free time judging from the quality (and just breathtaking sheer quantity) of their recent work. I have almost no free time.

In fact, it's Sunday morning and I am sitting in a contentedly socially unacceptable state of dress and hygiene. This makes me feel guilty since there are much better things I could be doing at the moment. I could, for example, be writing some very important strategic objective plans for my company, or reviewing and writing our operations manual, or thinking over cash flow projections for the next quarter... You get the picture.

The problem is, none of these things are as fun as stupidity. The other problem is I have pretty much unhooked from the Intercontinental Stupid Pipeline for the last few weeks. We moved our company into new offices so beautiful and downright dang cool that it will likely spark a whole new French Revolution (no great loss there...a few more Frenchmen sans their heads).

So, anyway, as you can see from the lacklusterness of my writing here, my Stupidity Tank is almost completely on empty.

For a second, let's examine the idea of the Intercontinental Stupid Pipeline. I think it's a swell concept. It already exists, actually. It runs in very higgledy piggledly fashion around the globe. So far, there is no overriding international governing body--no Secretary General of Stupidity (although, I think that Foo or Stupid Blogger would get the nod, for sure).

The best thing about the ISP is that one can tap into it anywhere, anytime and with no money. You need no technology, you need no previous experience or education (in fact, those are huge detriments), and you need no special equipment. You can obtain and use vast quantities of Stupid any time you want.

One small example of this from my own experience. I was out in public (HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! I love days they forget my meds!) recently. I was standing in line and noticed a woman obviously "with child". Well, my wife and I have done that a few times and I am interested in other people who are doing it, too. So, I, with my customary sophistication and poise, caught her attention and asked, "So...when is baby due?"

I knew that my reserve of Stupidity was brimming full when she replied, "Uh...I'm not pregnant. I just need to go on a diet...."


Saturday, May 20, 2006

Dealing with Dopes

Dealing with dopes can sometimes be a trying experience for those of us who retain membership in society's upper echelon of intelligence.


Quit rolling your eyes, or I'll come over to your house and smear mayonnaise all over your pillow.

As I was saying, intelligent dopes are sometimes challenged with echelons. As an intelligent dope, I can relate directly to the problem my fellow Blogger described recently. The Persistent Wrong Number Callers, as we members of the Membership call them, live among us, eat at restaurant tables near us, toss peppermint candies into the same swimming pools we do. It may surprise you, therefore, to know that I was once one of these lost souls myself.

I wasn't particularly LOST, per se, but I was persistent, and I was being a dope. There existed a phone number that was exactly the same as my home phone at the time, except where ours had a 5, I swapped in a 9. I called this number religiously, and always asked for Bob.


"Yeah, is Bob there?"

"There is no--hey, are you the one that called yesterday?"

"Certainly! Is Bob around?"

"Look, kid, there's no Bob here. There never was, and there never will be!"

"Pfft. Bob said you'd say that. Seriously, have him call me back, wouldya?"

"Stop calling this---"

"No, really. I need to get ahold of him. We were gonna have this party in the Mal-Wart parking lot, and Bob was supposed to bring the fruit punch. He never--"


Then I'd wait a couple days, and try again. I KNOW they were hiding Bob there, in their basement, and I'd be darned if I was going to let petty facts deter me.

What I shall now do is offer you time-wasters a List. In the spirit of helpfulness that permeates this Blog like mayonnaise on a satin pillowcase, I will offer you some assistance in dealing with phone dopes like me.

The most common phone dope is, of course, the telemarketer. These people don't WANT to be dopes, I'm sure, but are required to by their superiors. This unfortunately does not make them any less bothersome. Here's what you can do:

  • Make muffled snorting noises and say things like "what?" and "but that'd taste horrible!" and "I wanna talk to my other doctor!" Punctuate each of these outbursts with audible shuffling and cane thumping, if you're equipped with one.
  • Keep asking them if it comes in red. It doesn't matter what they're selling, although it is particularly effective if they're selling insurance.
  • Act extremely interested. Ask pointed questions about the item's construction, or the service offered. Let them get all the way to the end of their pitch before telling them that you don't have any money, and you're talking to them on a cell phone you found in the parking lot you live in. Tell them the cell phone is pink with little purple unicorns on it.
  • Belch a lot.

Our perennial favorite here at The Blog of Stupid is the Wrong Number Caller. These people generally take it in stride and offer embarassed apologies, and you're off the phone with them in seconds. But sometimes...

"Hi! Is Rodney there?"
"No, this is FooDaddy."
"Really? Are you sure? This is his number."
"No, it's not. If it were, he'd exist here."
"Is this 555-5356?"
"No. This is 555-5346"
"Five six?"
"Four six."
"Will Rodney be back tomorrow?"

And so on and so on. They're convinced you're jacking with them, and Rodney's really there, standing behind you and trying to laugh quietly. They KNOW you and Rodney are exchanging high-fives to celebrate your nasty little deception. Or they could just be phone dopes jacking with YOU. What is needed in either case is a swift and unexpected response to stun them into silence long enough for you to hang up on them without feeling too guilty.

  • "Yeah, he's right here, but he's busy feeding ketchup to his army of shrews. Can I take a message?"
  • "This is unacceptable, soldier! Operation Nice 'n' Squishy will fail if this insubordination continues! You secure that umbrella on the double! DisMISSED!" *click*
  • "Oh, you wish to talk to my cats? Is that it? Well that's kinda weird, but here ya go." Make mewing noises into the receiver before switching it off.
  • "I'm sorry to have to tell you this, Francine, but Rodney told me to let you know that he's decided to hate you, starting today. He doesn't never wanna talk to you no more." It doesn't matter what names you use.
  • In a slow drawl: "Yeeeahhh, I like ducks too. Tellya whut, I gotta slurp on up to the co-op 'n git me some sugar beets, but we can tawk 'bout ducks when I comes back. I'll caw y'later."
  • "Wurp? Grumble bum diddle boo? Frackrap quarg vorpee in the whumpstrap! I oughta nurlarg yakburp up the urbble!"

I hope this helps some of you out, time-wasters. I almost wish I could get a phone dope on the line so I could try some of these out. Yes, they're untested methods, and I advise you to use all the care and caution in putting them to use that I did when writing them.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Lawsuits and Weddings

The two do seem to go together a lot, don't they?

My wife, Beth, and I have been hounded the last few days by some arrogant jerk, who has been inexplicably allowed by his keepers to have access to a phone. He has used this privilege freely, calling us regularly and asking for a person who does not even live here. But will he listen? No! Instead, he insists that we have this person call him immediately, because “she is in trouble!” Well, fine, then. Call her up yourself and tell her that, but stop calling here, because we can’t and won’t help you. I swear the guy’s an idiot.

He called again yesterday and, having had enough of his condescension, I said, “If you call here one more time, I will sue the pants off you.”

“I don’t understand these threats!” he whined.

I then asked him the amount in his bank account and, when he told me, informed him that the figure would be sufficient.

“You’ll never be able to touch it,” he said.

Of course, the chances of my suing him are nil, so I have been cooking up schemes to make his life miserable every time he bothers us. Next time he calls and asks to speak with this person, I plan on saying, “Sure! One moment, please,” then setting the phone on the shelf and walking away. Heh. This and other, more elaborate, plots have been keeping my spirits high and I can’t wait to implement them. If you have any ideas about how to foil this imbecile, why not write them in the comments?

Now, folks, I really must go. I may not be able to post anything for the next day or two, since I am supposed to play for a friend’s wedding. Tonight is the rehearsal and the wedding is on Friday. I don’t know what time I’ll get back or if I’ll have an opportunity to post. I’ll try and post something really stupid this weekend to make up for it.

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Drugged Babies and Dead Hummingbirds

Before I even begin to explain the title of this post, I'd like to say that it would also make a very good title for a musical or ballet. Or a Nature Channel special.

Now to explain.

I've mentioned before that I work for the library system, so I come into contact with "steaming piles of books," or whatever I said. I'll check my facts later. Most of these books pass under my glazed gaze for days without faze--ing me; I plays by the ways because it pays. Or so I says.

Alright, I'm done. Let's try that again.

Most of these books go past without a second glance because the vast majority of them are popular novels or books about dieting or dating. There must be a lot of popular fat people dating out there, so I'm generally surprised when I find something interesting. As a rule, when any book about photography finds itself in my grimy mitts, I'm obliged to flip through it. This impulse led once to my almost being violently sick all over my crappy old torn up jeans.

Perhaps you've heard of the woman who takes pictures of babies? Not just the "ha ha, here's a baby, and here's another slightly different one" kind of baby photography, but the really creepy kind. Her first name is Anne, and since I'm about to mock the living baby poop out of her work, I'll keep the last name to myself.

If you think about Anne's photographs, you're given the impression that she's just AMAZED by the fact that women can have babies. Astounded. Just holy crap, lookit that, a baby. Dang. I tried to make one once out of carpet remnants and butterscotch pudding, but WOW, these are REAL babies. I'm so obsessed, I believe I will create upwards of twelve giant books that weigh more than your average newborn just chock full of creepy obsessive baby pictures. That ought to send the message that I really like them. A LOT.

Here's my dilemma. I respect The Baby as an organism and all, and some of them, if you squint hard enough, are actually kind of cute. However, Anne's are either curled into tight recently-fetal positions, or wearing carrot suits, or stuffed into giant teacups, or sleeping in somberos or on the lap of a doll. Actually, ALL of these babies are asleep. Which begs the question: are they drugged? Tranquilized?

I may not be able to recall being a baby myself, but I've had some experience with them courtesy of my younger brothers and my mother's prolific family, and I remember them as being kinda screamy. The babies I know wouldn't allow themselves to be tricked into dressing like daffodils.

In conclusion, I'm concerned. I strongly oppose all forms of baby-drugging, even if it's for a good cause like photography. Besides, Anne, aren't babies cute when they're awake? At least you can tell they're alive then.

Part one complete. Part two: Dead Hummingbirds.

See the picture? I'm sure you saw it before you read anything, because the pictures always end up at the top. Well, that's a hummingbird. The photo comes from the back of a book about backyard wildlife, and I thought it was pretty hilarious. It made me think. There are three ways this particular photograph could have come about:

1.) The photographer was in the right place at the right time. This person is a skilled individual, and used high-speed film and a high-quality telephoto lens to capture the wings in mid-beat while the bird snorked nectar from the flower, or...

2.) The hummingbird is actually dead. It was stuffed, then glued to the flower, and the photographer took the picture whenever he dang well felt like it.

3.) This is a type of flower that eats hummingbirds, and the photographer was in the right place at the right time. He captured the wings in mid-beat, and made an audio recording of the flower burping feathers an hour later (not pictured).

Either way, I like the picture. Pretend that the flower is saying "Mmm! Hummin'bird! Nyum nyum nyum!" and it's even better.

Monday, May 15, 2006

My Canoe Adventure

While out canoeing with some friends a year or two ago, I got the bright idea to try and grab the overhead beams of a bridge my friend and I were passing under. Missing the first leap, I felt challenged to try again...until the jerk of a canoe slid from under me and I was left stranded in the bowels of the bridge. I pieced together some short clips of the event and offer them here as an instructional how-not-to film.

The Hole

"I've got a song in my soul, and poo in my tummy"

With those words, I galvanized a nation into action. I set the cogs of a great machine in motion, and the course of human history was changed forever. Believe it or not, I'm actually able to type this with a straight face.

I, it's not like it's TRUE or anything, but all the skeptical looks I'm getting are just bouncing off your own monitors, time-wasters, so I'm not thrown off course a bit.

Decency, however, prevents me from lying for too long, so I may as well come clean. That immortal (immoral?) sentence (sentiment?) came from an Instant Messenger conversation I was having with my buddy Devin. I'm not sure what provoked it. Perhaps his threatening me with attack by bats caused me to deflect the threat's impact with well-placed moronics. Ambient Moronics, folks! It's a powerful force, and it's threaded through this Blog like the many cat hairs in my pillowcase.

But I wander. I'm gonna tell you time-wasters a story. This is a story of discovery, of dedication, of devotion and of dumbness. It is a tale of three high school dopes who took it upon themselves to make a difference. A difference, that is, in the boys' locker room. Our story starts with an innocent ceiling tile...


"Pfft. Can't even afford to get tiles without chunks missing!" said one of us, putting shoes back on.

"Yeah, and all of the quotations in this story are going to be vaguely attributed too, since they're made up."

"That's out of necessity, because while one of us COULD have said this stuff, they're not direct quotes, and I'm more interested in flow than accuracy."

"HA! That one gives your position away, Paul!"


"Am I David or Ben?"

"You can be whoever you want. Lookit the hole in the ceiling! That's the narrative focus here."

"Dude. A whole corner's missing. You can see all the girders up there and stuff."

"Is that your nasty old wadded up sock?" said the speaker, pointing.




"Oh, that's confusing. Toss me that thing, wouldya?"

Taking aim, I launched the sock in a wide arc up into the suspended ceiling through the hole in the tile in the corner of the room, above the lockers, and a Legend was born. The Hole had been christened. One sock, and the locker room at Potter's House was a little bit different.

"Yeah. There's a sock in the ceiling."

"That'd be a good name for a children's book! 'The Sock in the Ceiling!'"

"Shut up. Hand me that can of Riot Guard deodorant."

"T'heck with you! I'm throwin' this one in."

The can flew true, and landed with a thump on an adjacent tile. There was muffled chuckling.

For the next month or so, the three of us morons scoured the school looking for Hole Fodder. Anything metal was considered prime Hole food, and we even tore a door or two off the lockers in the locker room. Those little ones, about a foot square. They made a satisfying "clang-thump!" when they landed in the depths of The Hole.

"How about this roll of paper towels?"

"Chuck that fella up there!"

"Half-deflated volleyball?"

"To The Hole!"

"Traffic cone?"

"Heave it!"

"This mystery toddler?"

"That never happened, and you better put him back before we get arrested."

"Yeah, but it's funny if you think about it."

"I'm sure it is. Toddlers aren't good Hole Fodder because they're not metal. But check THIS out!"

It was a folding chair. One of those brown steel jobs you find at big conferences and family get-togethers. It was folded flat. We stared at it, eyes wide.

For the last couple of weeks, The Hole had been getting rather full. The objects we tossed up there no longer made a satisfying "thump" when they touched down. No, no, no. They now made MULTIPLE thumps, clunks and bangs as they bounced down the mountain of crap and sometimes came tumbling right back out of The Hole's maw. We looked at the chair, then up at eachother.

"Maaannn. This is gonna be tricky."

"Maaannn, this is gonna ROCK!"

"I'll climb on top of the lockers here, and you hand me the chair, okay?"

"Yeah. How much room is left?"

"Holy. Crap. You guys need to see this."

We took turns on top of the lockers, heads disappearing into The Hole, and beheld a wide pyramid of shoes, locker doors, sports equipment, textbooks, random bits of metal from the parking lot and various other junk in a pile that dominated the space between the building's structural ceiling and the suspended tiles.

"It doesn't smell that bad, even"

"Yeah, just wait 'til that apple goes!"

"That's a baseball."

"Baseballs aren't red, you wank. Hand me that chair!"

"Can you get it through The Hole?"

"Yeah, but *grunt* it's hard to *mmmph* get it around this other junk!"

"Sweet! You got it in there! Unfold it!"

"Oh, heck yeah. Good idea! I'll set it right here on the edge..."

And with that bad decision, came the demise of The Hole. With the chair visible from the locker room floor, standing sentinal before Crap Mountain, it was only a matter of time before the school principal saw it. Once he caught sight of a folding chair in the ceilling, he was bound to ask questions and draw certain conclusions. He was a smart man. He wasn't principal for nothing.

"I'm sure you three know why you're here?"

We looked around his office, at eachother, back down at the floor.


"Yes. The locker room. Take this trash barrel here, and I want that room cleaned out COMPLETELY. And if I ever catch you doing this again, I'll set the bats on you."

So the three of us took the trash barrel, a camcorder and our crushed spirits into the locker room and emptied The Hole. The spectacular crapfall that nearly buried David when he pulled a tile out from under the pile was enough to bring tears of helpless laughter to the eyes of all, and it took us nearly two hours to get the stuff down. We filled the trash barrel twice. Some of the items, such as textbooks and the traffic cone were put back to use, and the folding chair was roundly cursed.

There was much laughter. And there was forged a memory that lives on today in my mind and on the Blog. Also on tape somewhere, although I can't for the life of me find that blasted cassette. Let us all have a moment of silence for The Hole and its mighty reign of six weeks.


Y'enjoy that, time-wasters? It's a true story, minus some of the quotes. The crapfall was real. Real hilarious. We did videotape the demise of The Hole. We did get detentions. But I think you'll agree it was worth it.

Sunday, May 14, 2006

SRS Roommates

A few posts ago, I wrote about my experiences at SRS (the religiously conservative college I attended for 2 1/2 years.) Here is another entry about my time there. Enjoy!

At SRS, getting hooked up with the right roommate could be an interesting and, for some, a long and involved process. If you managed to find your perfect roommate, then you had it pretty well made. In fact, there are some people who roomed together so long and coexisted so well, that it began to be almost impossible to think of them as anything but roommates.

Eventually, through the process of two, maybe three semesters, roommates sought each other out. Personalities clicked, as did attitudes. For my first two years I had but one roommate. I had known him for some time and we made a public show of being good friends. The truth was that we actually got along pretty well. Of course, the fact that we hardly ever saw one another may have helped a bit. We had few classes together and then at about 3:00 pm he would go off to work. I would hang around the room, energetically avoiding my studies, until it was time for me to go to the gatehouse at 8 (or 9, depending on the semester). He would get back about 10 pm and usually was in bed by the time I came in at midnight or one o' clock. So we had little time to do much of anything.

This may not have been a bad thing, because the things we did do were rather dangerous. There was a lot of wrestling that went on the men’s dorm, but the other guys were such wimps. The minute you began choking someone, they would croak out, "You don't have an arm in that!" Who cares? The point was to win, wasn't it? When my friend and I wrestled, it was no-holds barred. I have lost a tooth, been rammed into doorknobs, and bled from the ear. He, on the other hand, has been shoved against dresser drawer handles, had his head sat on, and choked. Our matches were brutal. One of our favorite games was the Basketball-Wrestling Combo. We would hang a laundry basket on top of the door and try to get the ball into it using any means possible. Another favorite was getting on the top bunk and attempting to throw one another off.

Speaking of my friend as a roommate, I might mention here that he was (and I presume still is) a snorer. A professional snorer. As I say, he was normally asleep when I got off work and was therefore in full swing by the time I got in. After a few minutes of this torture, I would commence throwing objects down on him. Anything that was handy: cassette tapes, rolled-up socks, etc. When we disconnected the bunk beds and moved them to opposite sides of the room, I tried throwing droplets of water across to him. He would cease his rampage for a bit and I would hastily attempt to fall asleep.

My last semester at SRS, I had three roommates. We teemed up with two other miscreants, we’ll call them Sam and Mike, and set up a little apartment using two connecting rooms. Actually, Mike was not a miscreant, although I think I would have preferred one. Mike was a nice guy. A good guy. Too good, actually. There were instances when one felt like yelling at him,

"Mike! Swear! Commit adultery! Doooooo something!"

But he would only smile and bounce off to class, in order to maintain his perfect attendance record. With time, however, we managed to corrupt him to a certain extent. Once, when Sam was taking a shower, Mike threw a bucket of cold water over the curtain. Way to go, Mike, you’re making progress!

Saturday, May 13, 2006

Black Sheep in the Rail Car

Many, MANY of us have suffered through our fair share of family get-togethers. Generally, there is at least one family faction that doesn't quite fit in, and that's where I come from.

My nuclear family did indeed arrive in a beat up old car, which we always had to park next to some mid-level executive's Jeap Liburtee, or whatever SUV was fashionable at the time. Our car was never missing any doors or anything, but I think it would have been cooler that way. We were already the black sheeps, so why not go all out and set a record?

In fact, if I had my way, we would have showed up in bib overalls driving one of those two-man hand carts; the ones with the see-saw handle on top that rail workers used to scoot about on the tracks. I'd have a big ol' grease smudge on my chest that I'd put there personally, and I would be chewing on either a stalk of wheat, or a crescent wrench. I'd have few teeth.

My memories of family events, including Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Easter, always included a big meal served in Grandpa's finished basement. He had all his bowling trophies down there, and the ventilation system ran through ductwork that was concealed in a lowered part of the ceiling. So while most of the ceiling was a proper 8 or 9 feet above the floor, this one four-foot-wide backbone ran the length of his basement, and served as entertainment for us children when the taller members of the family bonked into it. They couldn't swear, though, because there was always a nearby clot of tiny little kids who were there to be stepped on. They had powerful ears, those tiny kids. Teaching them potty words was MY job--not my tall cousins, bless them.

So, here for your reading pleasure, time-wasters, is an account of a Thanksgiving that took place long ago. It is semi-truthful, but Grandpa's insanity was, um, enhanced, because crazy old men are always funnier than sane old men.

“Hey you guys! Get out of that mud now; we’re going to Grandpa’s house.” The Mom yelled from the back porch.

“Will Jennifer and Tracy be there?” asked Rodney, stealthily holding his rubber band gun behind his back.

“Yes. Into the car with both of you. I guess there’s no time to clean up now, so you'll have to be muddy.”

"Yay!" The boys liked to be muddy.

Rodney, Jimmy, and both parents piled into the crusty old beat up Ford Taurus with the missing rear door. The seat next to it was Jimmy’s favorite; he liked the freedom of the open road. The door would have been nice to have around when Dad drove over the curb doing 50 and he fell out. The family remained sanguine.

“Ahhh… He’ll find his way home. He’s a smart boy,” said Dad. Upon reaching the Grandparents’ house, Dad, displaying his driving prowess, parked the Taurus under Uncle Bob’s Liburtee. "That'll learn 'em!" said Mom.

Grandpa met them at the door, armed as usual with his cap gun and PEZ dispenser filled with Pepto Bismol tablets. He was wearing a tri-corner hat with a couple of duck feathers in it.

“Well, if it ain’t good ol’ Bill! How’s the throwin’ arm there boy?” he said, emitting a blinding spray of pink spittle.

“It’s Rodney,” said Rodney, stepping back. Geez. He'd even had a t-shirt made that had his name on it in big block lettering. "I'm Rodney" it said.

“I know your tricks, Bill," said Grandpa, eyeing him suspiciously. "Pepto Bismol?” he asked, thrusting forward his PEZ dispenser. Rodney politely turned down the offer and ran off to annoy his relatives.

"Crust,” muttered Grandpa, “they never want one! This new generation's so fulla smug little whelps like that Bill there.” He tottered off to find some mustard.

By the time dinner was ready, Rodney had eaten all of the Skittles in the candy bowls and thrown Tracy’s entire collection of Barbie dolls into the big tree out front. The family assembled in the basement, sat down, and waited for one of Grandpa’s famous hour-long prayers. Rodney readied his rubber band shooter. He never got the chance to use it. Right in between the words “God” and “bless”, Grandpa suddenly drew his cap gun and violently blasted away at thin air.

"Arrgh! Y'great thieving crumb bum! Not today!"

“Why is Grandpa doin’ that? ‘Nother seizure?” Rodney asked his grandmother.

“Oh my, no dear! He’s just getting rid that big blue squirrel that he says follows him around. Claims the brute tries to swipe his Pepto tabs. Get 'im dear!” Rodney cheered Grandpa on.

When he had finished his roll of caps, he stood facing the stunned group of relatives, grinned, dropped his dentures, and fell down. Grandma rolled him into the closet.

After dinner, everyone went home full of Uncle Bongo’s Weasel Chops and Grandpa’s homestyle Jell-O. Even Grandpa himself was able to taste of the wonderful cuisine when he found his way out of the closet a few days later.

Y'know, I probably wouldn't have minded going to these things if there'd been entertainment like that. I even worked in a falling-down! If any of you know where I can find some Uncle Bongo's Weasel Chops, please email me. Call me nostalgic.

Friday, May 12, 2006

The Old Man and the Burger

I was reading another blog earlier today and one of his posts gave me the idea for this one. Of course, we here at the Blog of Stupid have a liking for crusty old men, anyway, so this short short story should fit right in.

The Old Man and the Burger

The Old Man teetered onto the wooden deck and deposited himself cautiously into a conveniently positioned lawn chair. The day was bright and sunny, food was cooking on the grill, he had made it to eighty-five, and he was surrounded by all his children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. What more could he ask for?

“Gimme a burger!” He thumped the end of his cane onto the deck surface. “Just ‘cause I’m 85 doesn’t mean I don’t eat!”

“Hi, Gramps!” An adorable little boy grinned at the Old Man, who took an ill-tempered swipe at him with the cane. The boy jumped nimbly aside and laughed, because he thought his great-grandfather was just joking. He wasn’t.

A middle-aged woman approached and handed the Old Man a plate containing a delicious looking burger. The Old Man grabbed the offering, took one look, and promptly threw it over the deck railing.

“Durn thing’s raw,” he said. “Think I’m some sorta’ pervert? Gimme somethin’ cooked! If I was to bite into that last piece o’ meat, it would’a whimpered in pain.”

The woman returned to the grill and was soon back with another burger, which the Old Man snatched from the plate and inspected with a watery, but gimlet, eye. The burger sailed over the railing.

“Burnt,” the Old Man said. “Just smellin’ the thing gave me emphysema. You tryin’ to kill me, daughter?”

The woman did not reply, but returned to the grill to once again attempt a culinary coup. It was difficult to please the Old Man, because it was his hobby to be displeased and he considered it a grave personal failure to appear pleased about anything.

Seeing that the Old Man was waiting alone, one of his grandsons approached and sat down next to him.

“Glad we could all be together, Gramps.”


“Nice day, isn’t it?”

“Seen a better one in ’49.”

Struggling for proper conversation material, the grandson asked, “So, tell me how you made it to 85, Gramps.”

“I was stupid.”

“Beg pardon?”

“You act like I wanted to live this long!”

“Well, didn’t you?”

“What for? Can’t even get a decent burger these days.”

“But still, it’s quite an accomplishment,” the younger man insisted.

“T’weren’t nothin’,” the Old Man gruffed. “I just kept blowin' out the candles. Burger!”

As if on cue, the cook returned with yet another meat and bread offering. The Old Man took the plate and scrutinized the hamburger. He removed the top portion of the bun and poked at the meat with one knobby finger. His daughter stood there nervously, awaiting the Old Man’s verdict. The seconds ticked by and the Old Man continued to inspect the food. At last, he picked it up with both hands and took a tentative nibble. He chewed for a bit and then looked up at his daughter, who looked back hopefully.

“It’s nasty,” he said. “But I’m too hungry to wait any more. It’ll have to do.” With that, he polished off the burger in three massive bites and washed it down with a glass of iced tea. Wiping his mouth with the back of his hand, he belched and then shuddered. “Nastiest tastin’ burger I ever et. Gimme ‘nother.”

Thursday, May 11, 2006

My Last Words

I drove through a cemetery the other day and as I passed by the tombstones and monuments, I automatically figured the ages of the deceased. Some were quite young; I saw one three year old. Others had lived long lives, into their 90s or more. Then I saw one that said the occupant had died at age 25. That's my age. So, I began thinking about what I would like on my tombstone if I died at my present age and this picture, after a little doctoring, pretty much says it all.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

My Time At SRS

I was raised in an extremely religious household and, it follows, that I attended a very small and extremely religious college. In the interest of keeping the school’s name private, I will call it The School of Religious Superfluity or SRS. Whenever another school runs short of piety, they send off an order and quickly receive a fresh supply via Fex-Ed.

Not only was SRS highly religious, but also rather stringent in the rules department, a couple of which even made sense. One rule that I never appreciated or understood was that every student was required to attend breakfast every weekday morning, whether they were hungry or not. A few years ago, I wrote an essay about my experiences at SRS and I will share my entry about breakfast with you now. Aw, now, please, that wild applause is so embarrassing! *snort*


Students are required to attend breakfast at SRS. Why? Beats me. I always found this little rule particularly irksome. Fortunately, I was saved from this fate for much of my SRS career, since I was an employee of the gatehouse (a job that required me to be up quite late) and therefore was excused from attending. In fact, I worked in the gatehouse so often that once when I hadn't worked, I slept through breakfast and was automatically excused.

I would always stumble through the dining hall door and sit down just in time for devotions. We had devotions every morning at breakfast. This consisted of a student (we were selected alphabetically) standing up and doing the hokey-pokey in bib overalls. Not really. Actually, they would stand and read a passage of Holy Writ and then ask someone to lead in a song. Then someone else would lead in prayer and then I would lead the charge to the breakfast line. It is a strategy that young, inexperienced SRSers may wish to remember. You must either get to breakfast really early or just barely in time. Otherwise, you will have just enough time to reach the front of the line before everyone is seated promptly at 7:00 for devotions. Then you’ll have to start all over again. If you get there just in time, you can wait until after prayer and then take your chances getting to the front of the next line.

When the prayer began to wind down, you could hear the shifting of feet being put into running position. The instant “Amen” was said, two hundred little squeaks filled the room as rubber met tile and students dashed for the line. My gang and I had secured a table right at the front of the room, so it was not uncommon for me make first or second place. We had it down to a science.

While we are on the subject of devotions at breakfast, allow me an observation. There is an ant crawling on my computer screen. No, seriously. Each student grimly kept an eye on the schedule, watching their name come closer and closer. It is also interesting to note that it’s easy to remember while it is far away, but the closer it gets, the harder it becomes to recall, until finally on the big day, you forget to take your Bible to breakfast. We had a lot of lessons from John 3:16, as most of the kids knew it from memory. I trust I am not leaving the impression that breakfast was dull. There were times when it was rather amusing and set the tone for the rest of the day. Allow me to relate some of these.

It so happened that my day for devotions fell on Valentine's Day. Since my last name is Hart, the boy's dorm supervisor, (we’ll call him Phil), naturally found this most entertaining. I had been thinking of what to do for devotions and had come up with what I thought would be a good idea. But it wasn't exactly your normal, run-of-the-mill devotional, so at the last minute, I decided to scrap it and go with a more generic version. However, at 7:00 that morning, Phil stood and said, “Today we have a very special person doing devotions. Craig HART! Heh!”

“All righty,” I thought to myself. “If he wants to play rough, I will oblige him.”

And so, I reverted to my original plan. I stood and said, “You know, I really hate doing devotions. But, hey! As long as it’s free air time, let me tell you about a special sale we’re having down at Craig Hart Studios. Two tapes for the price of one!” At this juncture, I lowered my voice and said calmly, “The scripture for today is I John 4:8. God…is…love.” And then I sat down. I don't remember who I chose to start the song, but it was Jesus Loves Me. I may be corny, but at least I can keep to a theme.

Another interesting breakfast occurred when another guy (we’ll call him Bert) was elected to begin the song. It is common knowledge that vocal cords are not awake at 7:00 am and Bert's were no exception. The song was I Will Bless the Lord at All Times, which has a somewhat pleasant melody. Bert, however, began the song in an unknown key and then, realizing he had pitched it too high, abruptly dove down into the substratum with a sound like an eighteen-wheeler shifting for a difficult mountain grade. There were other instances, but I believe I have made my case.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

I'm Strange

If you've been reading this Blog for any length of time, you know that I am a very odd person. Perhaps you have even wondered what could have caused this aberration of humanity. Well, wonder no more. I have decided to give you a peek into my early life, where you may get a sense of all the factors that culminated in my present wretched condition. This post will serve as the first part of this dissertation. If I feel really weird and energetic, further installments may be forthcoming

I'm Strange

I was never one of the cool kids. This is can be determined even now by the fact that I am still using the word cool, even though I believe it is now uncool to do so. I'm still not cool enough to know what the cool words are these days and chances are fair that they aren't worth using anyway. But I digress.

Although you wouldn't know it by my massive bulk now, I was once quite small and rickety and prone to illness. Small and rickety children have very limited opportunities in their social world, it seems, and it didn't help that I also enjoyed classical music and literature. Among my small circle of friends, I was considered to be a good bloke, but put me in a crowded room and I would promptly disappear and, as far as I was concerned, the sooner the better. The athletic, muscular boys would be strutting about the room exuding manliness, while I would be searching for a dark corner into which I could squeeze and while away the evening.

Yes, I was an odd child. At summer camp, the other boys would opt for baseball and make a mad dash for the dining hall whenever the bell rang. I, on the other hand, would prefer to read or draw and become so engrossed that I'd forget to eat altogether. I hated summer camp. I only went once. No, make that one and a half times. I went home in the middle of the week once, because some kid got sick in the night and threw up on my pillow. Deciding that I had pressing business at home, I packed up my stuff and left on the next ride to town.

I was always working on a project, most of them ill-fated. I've long had an interest in writing and newspapers and it was only natural that I would decide to start my own underground press. My father was a pastor and, following the advice experienced writers always give younger ones, "Write what you know," I started a small newspaper about our church, including highly satirical articles about the various members, some of whom had exceedingly thin skins. Feeling pleased with myself, I showed the papers to my mother, who showed them to my father, who quickly shut down the presses before freedom of speech cost him a job. I didn't get into trouble for the venture, however. I still believe that my parents secretly found the papers hilarious and I was, more or less, told so later on. Unfortunately, none of these papers still exist, having been burned along with the rest of history's banned literature. Alas.

to be continued... (maybe)

Saturday, May 06, 2006

Devotional of Doom

I wrote this a long time ago, and it's actually been transplanted twice. First, it was an assignment, and then it ended up in my Road to Doom collection (see THIS post and THIS one too) and now it's here! Here's the backstory!

From 3rd grade to 12th, I attended a Christian school called Potter's House. In a rare display of seriousness here, for which I apologize, I want to say that Potter's House and its cadre of skilled educationists, is responsible not only for my formative education, but also for a good deal of my religion.

With that in mind, this borderline sacrilegious piece was an, um...warmup of sorts for an assignment where we were told to write a devotional. My teachers never saw this, and unless they stumble upon this Blog, they never will. Heh.

Devotional of Doom

There was once a boy who was addicted to mustard. His friends all thought he needed some help with his bad habit, but Richard denied this, and went off to do some mustard. His friends decided to go pray for him.

“Dear God,” they said. “Our friend Richard needs help. He has fallen away from you, and we want you to draw him to yourself in a big way.”

All of a sudden, Richard barged into the room where his friends had gathered, and collapsed on the floor.

“Oh my gosh, you guys! I just found the greatest thing! See, it’s like there was this big hole in my life, and I finally found something to fill it!”

“What is it man?” his friends asked.

Richard drew himself up to his full height and put his right hand over his heart. He took a deep breath and said:

“French’s. Guys, it’s the most amazing mustard there is out there! Dang, I thought I was gonna explode!”

And then he did. God got him for his sins. He was being punished for not listening to the prayers and concerns of his friends. You see, Richard is like all of us. We tend to look at the mustard in life, and ignore the good and wholesome things like kittens, cake and hugs. So don’t be like Richard. Find the Richard in yourself and kill him.

Moral: Don’t do drugs.

Now, if that doesn't clean up the druggies out there in time-waster land, I don't know what will! I gotta go now, though. There's some, um... hotdogs...I have Yeah. Hotdogs.

Watch Your Language!

The English language (if it truly is a language) is really weird. That may, in part, explain why I like messing around with it so much. It’s really good company. Kind of like a friend who is fun to just hang out with. You don’t even necessarily have to do anything, just goof off and be weird. So, yes, I love English. It’s never boring and sometimes it’s downright hilarious. I’ve been compiling a list of words I find particularly amusing for some reason that, at the moment, completely eludes me.

1. Bean
2. Weasel
3. Gargoyle
4. Bumble
5. Blither
6. Swine
7. Taxes (not really, I just threw that in)
8. Ladle
9. Chigger
10. Opine

Well, there are more, but you get the idea. English is an awesome language. Consider the following question of logic: “If you sweat in a sweat suit, golf in a golf shirt, and smoke in a smoking jacket, what do you do in a wind breaker?”

There are innumerable instances of English being a completely random collection of words from other languages, identically spelled words that mean entirely different things or words that can be altered drastically with the addition or elimination of one or more letters. I found the following on a forum I visit on occasion. Since the poster made it clear that he had collected these from various sources, I can’t give credit to the creators, but I enjoyed their work enough to include it here.

1) The bandage was wound around the wound.
2) The farm was used to produce produce.
3) The dump was so full that it had to refuse more refuse.
4) We must polish the Polish furniture.
5) He could lead if he would get the lead out.
6) The soldier decided to desert his dessert in the desert.
7) Since there is no time like the present, he thought it was time to present the present.
8) A bass was painted on the head of the bass drum.
9) When shot at, the dove dove into the bushes.
10) I did not object to the object.
11) The insurance was invalid for the invalid.
12) There was a row among the oarsmen about how to row.
13) They were too close to the door to close it.
14) The buck does funny things when the does are present.
15) A seamstress and a sewer fell down into a sewer line.
16) To help with planting, the farmer taught his sow to sow.
17) The wind was too strong to wind the sail.
18) After a number of injections my jaw got number.
19) Upon seeing the tear in the painting I shed a tear.
20) I had to subject the subject to a series of tests.
21) How can I intimate this to my most intimate friend?

There is no egg in eggplant nor is there any ham in hamburger. There is neither pine nor apple in pineapple. English muffins aren’t English and French fries aren’t French. Sweetmeats are candies while sweetbreads, which aren't sweet, are meat. Quicksand can work slowly. Boxing rings are square. A guinea pig is neither from Guinea nor is it a pig. Writers write but fingers don't fing, grocers don't groce and hammers don't ham. If the plural of tooth is teeth, why isn't the plural of booth beeth?

One goose, 2 geese. One moose, 2 meese?
One index, 2 indices. One Rolex, two Rolices?
Mouse - mice, louse - lice. House - hice? Shouldn’t one kernel of rice be a rouse?
Why doesn't "Buick" rhyme with "quick”?

You can make amends but not one amend. You can have odds and ends but not an odd and an end. Teachers taught. Preachers praught? If a vegetarian eats vegetables, what does a humanitarian eat? People recite at a play and play at a recital, ship by truck and send cargo by ship. We have noses that run and feet that smell. A slim chance and a fat chance are the same, but a wise man and a wise guy are opposites. When the stars are out, they are visible, but when the lights are out, they are invisible. Your house can burn up as it burns down. You fill in a form by filling it out. An alarm goes off by going on.

People, not computers, invented English, so the language reflects the creativity of the human race, which, of course, is not a race at all.

Friday, May 05, 2006

The Man by the Sea

I come before you, dear readers, with my head hung low. You may recall in a previous post where I mentioned my ongoing conflict with the “Little Things.” Well, they’ve been at it again. I have, actually, been quite busy, what with work, the NBA playoffs, and my secret life with the Israeli Mossad, but I realize that is no excuse for my laxity in keeping up my regular posts on this Blog. I beg your forgiveness and offer my sincerest thanks for your patience. (Oh, and Wilbur, thanks for that neat little box you sent me. When the YPS man made the delivery, I shook it and it started ticking. I assumed it must be broken, so I sent it back to you.)

The Man by the Sea

There was once a man named Manfred,
Who lived in a cave by the sea.
Whenever he heard waves crash on the rocks,
He badly needed to pee.

This was a natural instinct
And he wasn’t ashamed for a minute,
But it did get rather annoying
When he did and his dinner guests didn’t.

“Excuse me,” he’d say in a fluster,
Rising and running away.
“I must be about my business.
“Continue your eating, I pray!”

At first it caused not a stir,
The guests were understanding and kind.
But soon they began to worry,
When Manfred made trip number nine.

“I say,” said old Mr. Flaptrap,
Wiping his chin with a fork.
“That chap should lay off the liquids!”
And he scarfed another helping of pork.

The evening wore on with leisure,
As they waited for Manfred to improve.
But at last he shrugged and exclaimed,
“I guess I’ll just have to move!”