Thursday, December 15, 2011


The toll-free number on the instruction guide was dialed to rectify a problem that either I or my “labor saving” device was experiencing.

I could feel my knees weaken as I sank to the floor and assume the profile of one who is praying.

“ Please God don’t make me be forced to calculate numbers, may I speak to a human and may I understand what that human is saying.”

Apparently this split second request was slow in arriving as once again I was subjected to a virtual bouquet of numbers.

After being greeted by a cute sounding woman, who was actually just another computer, the statement was made that they had just redesigned their menu so I would need to listen closely.

( I immediately thought how lucky I was to have purchased an item from such an innovative company, as that was a phrase totally new to my ears. )

That statement was followed by the question that if I needed to hear the message in English, I should press 1.

( Hey wait a minute!! This is America and over a million Americans have sacrificed their lives just so that I could speak English freely in America. But, that is another debatable subject .)

The operator further stated that if I knew the extension of a person, to dial it immediately. Now, I ask you, how is it possible to know the extension of someone when you don’t even know their name?

Nonetheless, “she” forged ahead with another statement that for customer service the caller should press #1--and the numbers went on.

Finally, we arrived at #6, which I was to press for technical assistance and the opportunity to speak with a consultant.

My enthusiasm was slightly increased as I pressed 6, but this ascension hit the proverbial brick wall when the technical consultant uttered her first words.

Now, I have not been granted a license to ridicule the ethnic origin of another, except when it comes time to seek technical assistance.

But, since we’re attacking another’s deficiency, mine is a strong inability to understand those who have graduated at the top of their class in voice instructions.

In other words, I have difficulty understanding clear English.

Nevertheless, regressing to the consultant, her first words to me were, “Sahib, could I have your telephone number beginning with your code.” Right then I knew I should hang up, because the remaining time spent would be a waste.

After adjusting to being addressed as master ( I am pretty sure that’s what sahib means in English, but on the other hand, it could be a very derogatory way of addressing a person in India. ) we proceeded to attempt a rectification of the problem.

Following her directions, with only 11 “excuse me-s," 21 “I beg your pardon-s,”  16 “would you please repeat-s” and a few “uh-s” thrown in for good measure, we managed to place the widget where it was supposed to be.

Much to my surprise the devise resumed its normal function.

My faith in God and technical service had been restored.

Shortly I resumed my function, with the devise performing as it was intended.

I was smiling, waving at the neighbors and completing the work, when suddenly the device stopped.

As hard as I tried to re-start by repositioning the widget, the more tenacious the machine was not to start.

Upon my utterance of a few choice words and the continued failure of the labor saving device, I was painfully aware that there remained only one option opened to me.

And that was to once more endure the 1-2-3’s.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011



I feel an immediate tap on my right shoulder the moment the traffic light changes.

In fact the tap is so fast that it is a severe test of my reflexes, which in general are on the slow side. These reflexes could disseminate to the point that they control my entire body. This would cause me to be placed in the category of very slow, which I am.

In fact, I am so slow that I emulate the tortoise in that famous tortoise and hare fable which automatically places me in the winner’s circle, 'cause you know who that race!

I have a wife and two daughters who have said their prayers for me tonight.

Not to invade their privacy, but I heard them the other night, and their prayer goes something like this, “Now I lay me down to sleep, (whatever comes next, and whatever comes after that),” with the finale being “and please let Dad at least place in this race before he enters La-la land.”

These three are very proud of committing that prayer to memory at their ages.

And I am very proud for them.

Their respective ages are 70, 49 and 46.

Next week we begin working on the 1st Psalm, which contains several more words. Nonetheless, the three have promised me that they will commit those ---------at this point I feel the compulsion to level with you.

Not being a Biblical scholar, I don’t have a clue what 1st Psalm is. Therefore I don’t know whether it contains more or less words. Nonetheless, the girls are going to try another prayer next week because they are tiring of the old. Prayers around our house don’t remain in the same place very long as they apparently share much in common with the living room couch.

---“Wait just a minute, you ask, you were receiving a tap on the shoulder at a traffic light and now your on a couch. I am completely lost”---

---I am so sorry about that, as my thought pattern was also apparently lost---

---“I assume that the traffic light and the tap was your main thought.

This being the case, who was driving?”---

---A question like that comes very close to insulting me, as if I were I not driving and sitting in the front passenger seat, a tap on my right shoulder from the driver, my wife, would insinuate that I am married to an Orangutan!---

---Had I married an Orangutan, that would indicate either very poor choice on my part or very poor vision

However, as it is my wife who we are talking about, the tap on my shoulder is an indication from her, that it is lawful for us to proceed.

And never, no never, question if it is O.K. for you to move upon receiving “the tap.”

---Wait a minute!! You can’t question whether it is safe or defensive?---

-Absolutely not, if you want to continue maintaining a right shoulder!!-

Generally, my wife and I are together in the car traveling to one of those jovial destinations, but I remember once I was traveling alone.

A potentially serious accident was prevented by not having my wife in the car at the time.

The trip I was making involved mailing a letter. On the way to the mailbox, there was a four way stop.

I had the right of way over an opposing car, and would have received “the tap” on my right shoulder if my wife had been along.

But, the guy in the opposing car decided not even to stop, and after that, ran two more stop signs, that were very close to the intersection. (Apparently he had abused a few too many substances.)

Once again, I digress from the subject matter, but anyway I can virtually guarantee you that had my wife been present with her “shoulder tap,” there would have been a pile of cars at that intersection. So that night, by virtue of the fact that there is an April 11, someone’s life may have been saved.

Really the date April 11 doesn’t have any significance.

But, my birthday falling on April 11, does.


P.S. I can easily see that many of you are awaiting an end to this article so that you can rush to the store a buy me a birthday present.

Unfortunately, I have moved from my former residence. But, on an upscale note, I have tried to cover all of the “bases”.

I have left a forwarding address.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

The Things You Can Do In a Wal-Mart

I am the spirit of Sam Walton and I am the founder of Wal-Mart.
Rumor has it that I was a pretty nice guy while I was alive. I don’t know about that, but like all of us I entered that arena called reality and realized that all good things must come to an end. Consequently, I left earth in 1992.

At present I am in heaven, and have access to a computer.

That computer is referred by all of us up here as Earth’s Heavenly Connection. We think of the computer as a fabulous advance in technology, although we must admit, that sometimes we have felt like throwing Earth’s Heavenly Connection off our cloud.

You probably knew I was an avid hunter when I was on earth.

And I used to like to get to my hunting grounds in my old truck, which my wife disparagingly referred to as a “junk heap.”

We have also appropriately nicknamed my truck “Red.”

The reason we chose that name is that 1) an old hooker would probably look like my truck and 2) that hooker would probably have great familiarity with the color red.

Although, we gave serious consideration to changing the name of my truck to STD after the christening, which involved a $10.00 bottle of champagne, a small amount of ribbon and a slightly inebriated right tire.

We decided that the change would not be good, as we felt any association with that name would greatly affect the income of a hooker.

The lady, to whom we refer, might well be color blind so in reality she probably couldn‘t recognize any difference in color. But, she would easily recognize a difference in earnings.

However, yesterday I was surfing the internet and I happened to run across a site called Helium, Nitrogen or one of those rare gases.

This site is dedicated to a bunch of writers who do what they probably do best--write!

One of the subjects that they are writing about is what they would do in a Wal-Mart store.

Now, by the looks of me, you would probably say that I don’t generate very much electricity and that I am totally lacking in charisma.

Well, you're probably right, but tonight I am going change for you and share with you my vicariously generated electricity, which is hopefully charismatic.

By that I mean, I’ll tell you what the founder of Wal-Mart would do, if he were ever given the opportunity to do what he wanted to do, without any restraints, in a store.

First I’d drive ole Red down to the gas station and make sure he had a full tank of gasoline.

As I understand it up here, at the reasonable prices they are charging for gas down there, that shouldn't be more than $400.00.

Then I’d head on over to the local Wal-Mart and hope that it would be one of those new super-centers with much activity.

After playing dodge 'em with a group of pedestrians in the safe walking area I’d take ole Red through the front doors.

This might sound destructive to some of you, but ole Red is a short truck in height and there would be no damage, whatsoever.

Besides that, you must remember that the stockholders own the store, so I do have a vested interest.

Once inside and past the smiling greeter and her shopping carts, which she will gingerly offer me ( she will be oblivious to the fact that I am in a pick-up truck ), I’d then drive ole Red to aisle 13.

Why, aisle 13 you ask, with a smile that isn’t quite as wide as the greeter’s.

Well, for some reason out of all the aisles in the store, aisle 13 has always held a deep fascination for me.

It could be that the reason behind that is 1) when I first started out in this business, I owned 13 Ben Franklin stores and 2) that is generally where sporting goods is located.

I may see a new item in Sporting Goods that would make my hunting or fishing easier.

Oh sure, we hunt and fish up here as well.

In offering these amenities Peter told me the only problem he has encountered so far is maintaining adequate water in the lakes when it rains. ( It rains down there, not up here. )

I remember now, I was fishin' away one day and it started to rain, which in itself is extremely rare.

I didn’t make it to shore fast enough ( it’s never cloudy up here, either, ) and wound up at the bottom of a 75 foot waterless lake.

You’d be surprised at the many things you see at the bottom of a lake.

It’s somewhat reminiscent of a fantasy land.

The drop to the bottom didn’t frighten me so much as the difficulty I had getting to shore. The bottom of this lake was real muddy. On my attempt to get to shore, I slipped several times. When I reached shore I felt and looked like the largest ball of mud in the world.

A bolt of inspiration has hit me, and I must share this story with you, as it relates to both the place I now call home and fishing.

Somewhere in Biblical teachings is the following:

If you give a man a fish, he will return the next day for another fish.

But, if you teach a man to fish, he will learn to sit in a boat and drink beer all day.

Nevertheless, let us return to aisle 13.

I generally take ole Red to the bottom of the aisle where there is not much in the way of activity.

Then I throttle the old truck up to its highest rev. and let her “rip,” taking my foot completely off the brake.

I generally “floor board” the accelerator, and go maximum speed ( which is a grandiose 35MPH ) up aisle 13. Until I get to the sporting good section, where I slow down to peruse the area for bargains and useful items, as well.

I never hit anyone, but I am confident that the individuals that are/were in aisle 13 become very respectable of me and ole Red.

I always try to be as astute in my observations as possible.

Most of the shoppers on aisle 13 are lacking in one item of clothing , although they are well dressed. That item is a sombrero, as most of them appear to be from South of the Border.

Nevertheless, I get out my trusty 12 gauge, and fire several blanks into the air.

I have noticed this act has a tendency to bring “the fear of the Lord” into the shoppers on aisle 13. Either that, or the Lord never directs them again to aisle 13, which becomes their main reluctance to ever visit that aisle again

It sometimes creates so much fear in them that I have noticed some of the shoppers from aisle 13 have proceeded to the check out with noticeable circles on their jeans in their groin area.

Anyway, I go up and down the aisle --ah yelling and ah shooting those blanks in my shotgun--, in hopes that I will moderately scare as many shoppers on that aisle as possible.

I certainly do not have the intent of injecting sufficient fear into the shoppers that it will scare them away from my store permanently.

No-no, I just hope to inject enough fear into them that is necessary to “keep them on their toes,” to recognize the next bargain.

Believe it or not, the fear I place into my shoppers seems to stimulate sales.

Now this could be attributed to several factors, but my personal view is that the shopper has to hurry to dodge ole Red.

In the process of dodging ole Red, they knock items off the self directly into their shopping carts.

Nonetheless, management has said that as long as sales increase, they will allow me to continue my antics on aisle 13.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Youthful Expression

Wally Michaels! Oh! Wally, I wish you were here so that I could personally thank you for the crystal clear reality check on life that you brought into my epicenter.

I often wonder where Wally is today and if he is doing O.K.

Wally was my best friend as I was growing up in a small town in Northern Illinois. We were inseparable and did everything together.

We played marbles together, ran through lawn sprinklers when the weather was hot and set up a lemonade stand in which we split the profits. The lemonade stand was a good idea in the wrong location. According to our ledger we generated a monthly income of $2.00, but in the process of making all that money we learned the realities of marketing. So, I guess you could say a poor location garnered a lot of “learnin”.

One day after arriving home from a high school basketball game, I went into my room and called Wally only to discover that he had left home for good after an argument with his parents. As I closely patterned my life style after Wally’s, that episode activated my thought process.

In that Wally and I were both sixteen I knew that his intellect and knowledge far surpassed his parents, just as mine did.

When my mother called Dad and me to dinner I assumed the attitude of someone vastly superior to anyone over 25 years old. As we all sat down to dinner my dad asked me to help him move something. As his pronunciation of words is rather staccato, I misunderstood him and thought he asked me to move.

“But move where?” I queried.

“No, no, your mother just wants a cabinet moved to the south end of the living room as she thinks that‘s a pretty good spot.”

Again, I misunderstood his pronunciation and thought he said South Bend was a good location and it suddenly dawned on me that Mom had gotten into the act as well. An argument ensued, in which my mother naturally took my dad’s side. Some vicious words were spoken, which we both wished we could retract, and I ended up packing and leaving home just like Wally.

I thought I would spend the night in our city’s park sleeping on a bench and then return to my home with a slightly blemished demeanor. But, the sole bench in the park was occupied by an infatuated couple. Little did I know that it would be 4 years before I would return to my house in that sleepy little town.

It was cold outside and so I instinctively headed South. “I’ll bet Kentucky is warm this time of year.”

So I caught a ride with a trucker, to leave temporarily my little, cold town. “Where to?” asked the trucker to which I replied “Anywhere that is warmer.” “Then you want to go to Florida or Georgia.”

I wasn’t sure where those two states were located, but my reply nonetheless was in the affirmative. “Yep” was my reply. That initial ride took me as far as Nashville, TN, as he had to turn his rig off the main route to head East.

The second ride I caught from the heart of Nashville was headed for Memphis, TN, so I agreed to go there because the driver said it was a warmer climate. Up to that point my body had been fueled solely by adrenaline and my new found feeling of independence. But, on our way to Memphis I began to get the pangs of hunger. In that I only had $10 to my name, I could provide fuel for my body for another 3-4 meals, so I discovered the initial drawback to my independence, I had to find a job!

I asked the lady who was driving the car if she knew of a place that I could find a job and she told me that her husband was the manager for a local newspaper and magazine distributor, and that they were hiring. That would be my first stop tomorrow morning.

In that we had reached the city limits of Memphis, I soon discovered the second drawback to my newly discovered independence. I had to obtain housing so that I would have someplace to lay my head that night.

Again, I asked the lady if she knew where I could rent accommodations. She gave me the directions and the best I could do was $35.00 per week. The only sad part of this story is that the rent had to be paid in advance. I was able to convince the landlord that he would wait until tomorrow evening to collect the week’s rent.

So after a night of “turning and tossing,” I reported bright and early to the magazine distributor. I landed a job selling magazine subscriptions, but the chief drawback was that it was based on straight commission.

Having the knowledge of producing $35 for my landlord that night provided me with the motivation to sell 6 subscriptions that first day.

So that left me with one more obstacle to overcome. Convincing my boss that he should give me a $35 advance against an income of $60 that I had generated. It was a hard sell, but convince I did and returned to my room with the $35 for my landlord. I was headed for his office to pay him when a policeman stopped me and asked me for I.D. I had in my wallet many pieces of identification including my new driver’s license.

In those days we wore pants that had a button over the back pocket. As hard as I tried, I could not get the button unfastened. I tugged at that button from every angle and finally after pure disgust I uttered a few words that would not be said in church. The policeman thought I was drunk and slapped handcuffs on me which were necessary to transport me to the local jail.

This situation seemed to be a total miscarriage of justice which I relayed to the officer. But, from him there was no reply. He was right and I was wrong!

They booked me for a public drunkenness, and threw me in the drunk tank to “sober-up”. In the “tank” I met two characters. One acknowledged that the best advice he could give to a young person such as I, was simply never to stay in the same location long enough to be heavily rained on. The other claimed it was he who had shot JFK.

True, I didn’t know much about the details of the JFK assassination, but I did know that this guy had nothing to do with it.

After my release for committing a misdemeanor I debated as to whether return to the rooming house, my house in Illinois or head south. In that I needed a good tan, before I returned to either, I chose to go south. But a dilemma shortly presented itself. I did not know where in the southlands that I should go. I had always heard about Miami, Florida, as being the capitol of the south, so that became my destination and temporary home.

I was hanging out at the beach ( to get that tan that I needed ) and I met three other guys. The four of us shared a lot in common and we decided to form a band which was minimally successful but it sure allowed us all to pay our debts.

I ultimately wound up where I should have been all along - that was back home.

But, those four years I was away surely did nourish my bank of knowledge. I was not an adult and yet I was forced to make adult decisions.

All that I can say is, “Wally, I give thanks to you for expanding my mind.”


Saturday, September 24, 2011

The Porch

There he is again--swat--bzzzzz. “Ah shucks!! He got away again.” ( You’ll notice that I have emphasized ah shucks which is entirely foreign to my vocabulary, but in that this is Sunday I thought it best to incorporate a degree of respect into this article. If the full truth were known, I said #$%& to myself.)

There are two events that my wife and I look forward to being a part of our every Sunday.

One would be our attendance at our Church, and the other would be sitting out on our screen-less but, newly constructed back porch with a cup of coffee in my right hand and a soft drink in my wife’s left hand.

The reason we both have a free hand, is that the other hand is generally occupied with a fly swatter which is generally attempting to swat that one aggravating fly who in turn is displaying his dire affection for either our bodies or our drinks.

“There he is on the window ledge,” is the general announcement, before I take another swat at him and miss, uttering under my breath the same words of disappointment.

--I immediately have discouraging visions in which I can clearly picture the fact that I’d never make it as a major league baseball player--

My wife then drops her fly swatter, as well as her drink on the floor when the door from the kitchen to the porch opens and there is a cheerful emission of the word “Hello.” ( I didn’t want to divulge this fact, but my wife suffers from un-co-ordination and is very startled by surprise. This has garnered our attention, and with psychiatric assistance ( which is mainly covered by Medicare ) we are trying our best to correct these two unfortunate conditions.

Nevertheless, that bright and cheerful “Hello” emanated from the mouth of our daughter in law.

We had completely forgotten that we had committed ourselves to watch our 6 year old grandson for this afternoon.

As a reciprocal gesture, she had baked us a chocolate cake with vanilla icing.

She showed us the cake, which for some reason she placed between my wife and I, on a small table.

Before our daughter in law had found enough time to leave, I was proudly instructing my grandson in the art of fly swatting.

Before she had found the necessary time to back out of the driveway, I had issued my grandson a fly-swatter.

Apparently, my grandson has a waning concentration, as he began to play with our dog, temporarily forgetting about my instructions, into which I had placed great effort.

This apparent total lack of respect was like “a slap in the face” to me, so I attempted to correct this void in my grandson, by calling for a squadron formation. I can not overemphasize the seriousness nor the importance of fly-swatting. ( Particularly, on our back porch. )

That annoying fly made his appearance once again, only this time on the lamp shade.

The swatting privileges were passed to both my wife and grandson.

They swung and missed at which time both had the same vision as I had of never being allowed to play in major league baseball.

That fly had to be very aggressive, as his next location was in the outer periphery of the cake.

I gave specific instructions, that upon my count, all three of us would swat the periphery of the cake where the fly appeared to be eating away. ( in that I am not an entomologist I really don’t know what he was doing. But, whatever the function was, it appeared to make him very complacent. )

Unfortunately, we missed the periphery of the cake. and all three of us hit the cake dead center. This total lack of alignment may be attributed to:

1) My grandson’s lack of concentration.

2) my wife’s lack of co-ordination.

3) my lack of good fortune.

Somehow the complacent fly had once again eluded his eternal destiny.

So, we heard those old familiar sounds--swat-- bzzzzz!!

However, the effect the hapless fly swatters had on the vanilla icing was similar to a very large elephant stepping into a jar of Vasoline.

In other words--there was a really big squish, which in turn caused the icing to become dislodged from the cake.

There was vanilla icing everywhere, except of course on the cake.

The icing was dangling from the right ear lobe of my grandson, in my wife’s hair and on my nose and in my left eye. A few pieces even made it as far as the drink spilled by my wife.

The icing also went up the right nostril of our dog, which I had to extract, after I was able to breathe and see once more.

It was not fun cleaning ourselves up to a presentable state and removing the liquid from the deck, but when we had, we all felt much better.

When this had been accomplished we resumed our Sunday siesta on the back porch.

A day filled with limited frustration and relaxation.

Relaxation, until we heard that fateful --bzzzzz!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011


What would be your reaction be if you had planned to take a business flight to a major city. At the last moment you had chosen to upgrade your accommodations from coach to first class.

You settled into a much more comfortable chair with considerably more “leg room” and found that the person sitting beside you was a famous singer whose name you couldn’t recall?

So far, I bet your reaction would be one of ecstasy, especially if you liked his singing.

There was only one minor problem, he was dead!!

I’ll bet now that reaction just headed south.

You now have the choice between running to the restroom and “tossing your cookies,”  or you could be the first to call for immediate assistance and administer CPR.

You might find that by choosing the latter path you would save the life of a very talented individual.

You also would eliminate the possibility of getting your foot caught in the commode, which is quite easy to do in an airplane restroom, especially if you are performing two functions.

The airline company places in the commode a disinfectant, which is understandable.

This disinfectant acts as a dye.

Many a time after using the airplane restroom I have returned to my seat with a blue pants leg and my suit is gray.

Returning to the guy who appeared dead, he appeared moribund, but he was really just fast asleep.

Needless to say, he was most unappreciative of my administration of CPR.

After I had explained to him my mistake and that I thought he was the greatest singing talent in the world, he seemed to calm down a little.

He also exhibited another new-borne trait. For the rest of the flight he would no longer sit beside me.

And that’s a shame in a way, because I have a daughter who wants to be a singer, and I consequently had several questions to ask him.

Oh well, that’s life.

Now there is an empty seat in first class, because of his transferring to the coach section.

The stewardess offered it to anyone in that section at no extra cost, but for some reason everyone exhibits an apprehension to sit in the seat next to me.

So I am now seated next to an empty seat.

As I have embarked on this flight for business purposes, it is imperative that I appear busy because you never know who’s looking.

I remove my lap top from its case only to discover a mouse ( a real one!) inside.

The mouse jumps into the aisle and scampers toward the rear of the plane bringing fear to those females sitting toward the rear of the plane, then it reverses direction toward the cockpit.

On this flight we have a female pilot.

Somehow the little mouse works its way under the cabin door. I shortly hear a scream from the female pilot and witness a an airplane that has veered tremendously from its course.

The little mouse reverses direction again, and heads for the rear of the plane.

In this process that mouse frightens all of the female attendants and passengers ( some of whom are already “scared half out of their wits” from his previous scamper).

Now I am the subject of scorn of both genders.

Immediately, I remember the exploits of D. B. Cooper. Maybe I’ll be lucky and be found when I parachute into the wilderness.

Saturday, August 27, 2011


The check-out line was long at the supermarket, as it snaked its way back to the cantaloupe section.
“Why did I ever come to this place?" uttered the man to himself under his breath. “I could be sunning myself on the beach, drinking a ‘cool one’ and viewing the femme fatales as they walk by."

A thin veil of optimism crept over him as he suddenly realized there were only 3 people in front of him, until he achieved his “check-out” goal.

This gave him the opportunity to pick-up one of the tabloids. After reading a small segment, he once again said to himself, “That guy must get married to another woman and pick up all his money from the tabloid publishers, cause I never have seen him act.”

The person checking out was fumbling for her checkbook and the clerk was having difficulty locating the total button which added to already long delay.

Finally, this customer had a change of attitude, and became downright ebullient.

His enthusiasm heightened to a point of ecstasy because he was next in line to be checked out and have his purchases finalized.

He had only two items and he wished he had access to a 10 item or less, but the store didn't have such a checkout. -- He rationalized,

“It’s probably best that they don’t have such a line as I would get out of the store much faster, be on my way home and at that time would be in a fatal car accident. Come to think of it, by not having such a line, my life has been spared.”

Arriving at the point where he was face to face with the checkout clerk, “Ugly little kid,” he muttered, under his breath.

The man politely placed the mouse trap and the cheese on the counter.

He was fairly convinced that the sounds that he heard in his apartment in the middle of the night, were those of mice, rather than the moose he initially suspected.

With extreme difficulty, coupled with an almost lethargic response, the clerk rang-up the mouse trap.

Being the curious individual that he was, which was pretty much dictated by his age, the clerk picked up the item for further investigation.

Unfortunately, in the process of selection the man had purposely set the trap, to check its efficiency.

Well anyway, to make a long story short, the clerk, after saying “Uh, this is interesting,” activated the mouse trap on his nose. The young boy cried out as did the man--No, it was more of a grumble from the latter--

The man was not a connoisseur of fine cheeses, and therefore had placed in his cart the first wedge of soft cheese that he came to.

Apparently the shock and small amount of pain this boy encountered with the trap, also caused the boy to ram his thumb in the middle of the cheese.

After calling 911 and the supervisor, the paramedics were able to pry the trap from the boy’s olfactory as well as well as his thumb out of the cheese.

Not only did the event add a welt to the boy's nose and a band-aid to his thumb, it also added greatly to the time delay.

"Hey mister, what about your trap and cheese?"

As the man hastily left for another store he vociferously replied, "In your dreams young man, only in your dreams!!"

Sunday, August 21, 2011


The objective of this article is not to sound condescending. You are certainly my friend and even though I probably know much more than you, I will always consider our friendship greater, and will therefore overlook your deficiency. (:

But anyway, the scientific name for one of my favorite pastimes is philematology. For the uneducated that is the scientific name for kissing.

While I was studying up on this fact I also discovered the average married couple will spend 20,160 minutes philematolizing.

We have been married for 49 years now and regrettably have brought that average down, particularly in the last ten years.

Also, scientists have discovered that the average couple loses 26 calories on that first kiss due to exhilaration, excitement, expectation, exaggeration, exceptional; etc. (never realized there were so many ex's associated with that first philematolize).

Do you think that is the reason divorce is running rampant?

In other words: (And this is my stance on the issue. )

Assuming that first philematolize has a quasi enduring effect and the couple is joined in matrimony.

Do most of the chimerical ex’s disappear, with those few remaining reality ex’s transformed into harshness, until one morning we awake to discover those ex’s have changed us into a real live EX?

Unfortunately, if the relationship endures, the act of philematolizing follows almost a mathematical plane curve straight down to the depths of despair.

As I mentioned, we have been married for several years and we have reached the stage where we now only lose 0.2 calories per philematolize.

Nonetheless, my wife, so that she can maintain her figure, has insisted that we go around the house lip-locked. This in itself is not a bad idea, until it comes time to mow the lawn.

However, in our teens and twenties we did a lot of philematolizing. I even went so far as to introduce the French philematolize, but in that we didn’t speak the language and lacked the necessary papers (passport, etc.) we were politely asked to terminate our efforts in those areas. ( oh! what memorable efforts-and who categorized this as an effort anyway?)

When you are into a relationship, kissing generally leads to something else.

The following is exactly why the Eskimo and Polynesian birth rate is sub-standard.

Believe it or not-these people rub noses in lieu of lip philematolizing-which often presents an obstacle for an Eskimo or Polynesian prizefighter-

This only leads to more nose kissing which creates a decrease of Eskimo and Polynesian prodigy.

This form of philematology is done on purpose-it is maintained to benefit the economy of the individuals, who are quite un-appreciative of this fact.

As they can not wait to get back to lip philematology and what comes after.

Those poor people are doing this at the request of their government.-and it has been ruled this is the pinnacle of government interference-

And while we're on the subject, did you realize the the average human esophagus is 10-14" in length and-

Saturday, July 30, 2011


Being a parent is one of the easiest jobs in the world . All you have to do is perfect your ability to utter two words from your mouth.
Those words are “yes” and “no.”

With “no” being the most popular, as it is generally said the most, with the least amount of thought.

You should also practice your discipline and your running. Because in some states if you administer discipline to your child you will be running from the law to prevent your incarceration.

Any form of “no” or discipline I have relegated to my wife and I have humbly agreed to manage the “yes” department.

My primary reason for managing this department is that I always want to maintain the image of a “nice guy” in the eyes of my children. In other words, if one of the kids asks me if it is alright for them to go to Gracie’s house at 3AM you know what my answer will be.

Immediately, you will want to know what we are doing up at 3AM.

Starting with myself, that is simply “my time of day,” the kids have forced themselves to stay awake that long (remember it’s Friday) and Gracie, well, she’s in for a “rude awakening.”

I’ve gone off and done it again. I have deviated from the subject.

For this I deeply apologize, as sometimes I have difficulty returning to that subject immediately.

When you neutralize a floor----------------No! That’s not what we were discussing.

Now, when you want your heater to be safe-----------------oops!

The act of parenting does----------------- I knew I would eventually remember!

There is about only one requisite required to being a parent and that is patience.

Unfortunately, it is a trait that I don’t possess, but my wife does.

That is exactly the reason I have assigned her most of the responsibility to raise the kids properly.

To illustrate this point, it was me who started that ill-fated program of “Have your children walk one week after they are born and talk before that. And be potty trained in the second week.”

I wrote a book that had that very title and invested substantial funds into the program, having full confidence that those funds would evolve into a fortune. Those funds are no longer substantial and forget the fortune.

There is a saying, that “the root of all problems is money.” If that is true, then there is someone, along with me, who must bear my problems. But, this is not always true, as there may be an ever popular “bailout.”

Nonetheless, with parenting a child, you are supposed to take a lump of clay and over a time span, mold it into an individual of perfection.

I subscribe to Time and Popular Mechanics magazines, but not to that theory.

My belief is to take that lump of clay. Pop it into the kiln and let the kiln do all the molding work for you and hope that individual does not turn out to be a threat or burden to our society.

Obviously, there are many parents in agreement with this belief.

O.K. then accountability and going green.

You immediately ask, “what in the Lord’s name do those three words have to do with the subject we are discussing?”

My reply is “absolutely nothing” but, a little man I met on a street corner, told me that if I included accountability and going green in my article then I would have a best seller.

Returning to being a parent.

I can not emphasize the importance of your child’s acquisition of knowledge, which is accomplished through our mainly superior school systems here in the states. If you are a lucky parent, you will receive invites to attend four main functions.

Your child’s graduation from college, high school, middle school and the monthly P.T.A. meeting, which if your child attends school at all, you will probably be elected president. No, seriously it’s a great honor.

Do me a favor, always give your grad a gift of quality and refinement, and this year make it green.


Disclaimer of sorts- I recognize that I am truly blessed to be able to walk on both legs, which some individuals can’t. But, this is a humor article (hopefully) and we humans have got to maintain our humor in the face of adversity.

First off, let us dispose of the question you have for me, “what does your left leg have to do with the misfortunes of Friday the 13th?”

The obvious answers are that I was born on the 25th, which is only 12 days away from the date in question and my left leg is a definite misfortune.

Also, I recently had a left knee operation to repair a torn cartilage performed on Friday the 18th ( which is getting substantially closer to the 13th ) and the knee always has a tendency to “act up” on the Friday the 13th.

Upon a through search of the dictionary as well as the ever popular Thesaurus, other than those four compelling facts, I can find no additional answers.

“O.K. then what is your complaint with your left leg?” you ask.

It is specifically when I try to put a sock on the foot of my left leg.

Everything reacts as it is supposed to on my right leg. I can cross my right leg over my left leg with ease and apply the sock with a beaming smile on my face.

But, when it comes to applying the same set of socks to my left leg/foot it is an entirely different matter.

At this point my left leg somewhat reminds me of a wet noodle draped over an ironing board.

And to keep my left leg in the same position long enough to put on a sock is one big expectation that, in my lifetime, has never been realized.

Never one to be discouraged I withdraw my left leg, which I place straight in front of me.

I then attempt application of the sock from a frontal direction.

The only problem I encounter with the frontal approach, is that I can never seem to reach my foot, irrespective of the amount of leg bending.

In that I refuse to wear a sock on one foot and not on the other, I continue the maneuver.

I then bend my leg in front of me which would probably accept the application of the sock easily, but there has been so much perspiration dripped onto it from my former attempts that it will not go on my foot at all.

So after calling my wife to dry out the sock for fifteen minutes in the clothes dryer I am ready to resume my pursuit.

However, this time it is not alone.

I coyly request my wife to assist me. If that doesn’t work, I beg.

She instructs me to lie horizontal on my back on the bed, with my leg straight up.

She glides the sock on with ease until it gets caught on one of my toenails, which I have not seen the necessity to cut in six years, and rips.

Fortunately, according to her, the tear is in an area that “won’t be seen,” so we proceed.

I firmly believe that an individual should exercise. I have a schedule where I do a few sit-ups, bench presses, neck exercises and walk a mile but an aerobics expert told me that if I decide to put on my socks that day, that the schedule is not necessary.

With the assistance of my wife, I then go through gyrations that I thought were impossible.

Finally with my left leg over my right shoulder, my wife applies my sock with forcible ease ( the astute reader will notice the forcible part, which created another a tear. Fortunately, this tear was also un-noticeable.)

I thanked my wife for her assistance in this 35 minute ordeal.

Now there is only one thing that remains in my dressing process.

Putting on the necktie, which never seems to come out the right length.


The doctor said I must undergo a colonoscopy about two years ago
to discover whether the bleeding I was having from my posterior end was cancerous.

I can not speak for humanity, but fortunately for me it wasn’t.

I am not aware of the techniques used by the physician when performing an operation of this type, other than he makes you get up awfully early. I probably have confided in you this fact, that I am not terribly thrilled about early. -No- I downright despise early!

However, I do know that a colonoscopy operation also involves a lot of questions about the status of your health with emphasis on your insurance.

You also have to change from your street clothes into what is referred to as a hospital gown.

Putting the gown on properly is an extremely complicated maneuver.

In fact, I am quite an enterprising person. I have discovered a void in our system that hasn’t been filled. I would like to start a course on how to properly adorn yourself with a hospital gown, teaching the correct way to tie strap A with corresponding A strap, the B strap with the corresponding B strap, and so forth.

In other words, when you graduate from my course, you will possess all the necessary knowledge as to how to correctly put on a hospital gown. The most attractive part of this course is that I have designed one that will only take four weeks to complete.

The second most attractive feature, is that the course will only cost you $275.00.

Well, returning to the operation, after pretending to have figured out how to put on a hospital gown ( remember, only $275 ) you are then asked to lay your body onto this bed that has wheels. In that it is a very small bed you will be lucky if your attempt at ascension onto this horizontal cot does not cause you to meet “face to face” with the floor.

After you have successfully gotten your body onto the bed with wheels, a nurse will run a bunch of physical tests on you like blood pressure, temperature, etc. and continue to ask you questions. Only this time those questions will be mostly about the weather and the score of last night’s baseball game.

Then comes that moment when they unlock and start using those wheels. The attendants will wheel you into this room, where if your lucky, as I was, see the doctor.

Before I was given that shot of anesthesia, I ask the doc if he would do me a great favor: To inspect the colon very thoroughly and if he didn’t find my head up there, he would write my wife a note to that effect.

Being a very accommodating fellow, he agreed to those terms.

You will “sail off” to dream land after you have been given that shot of anesthesia which either works slow or fast. The slow effect would resemble the way my wife drives. She does not believe we should exceed 45 MPH in a 65 MPH zone.

The rapidly acting anesthesia very closely resembles a “ker-plunk and off to dreamland”.

Mine was the “ker-plunk” type.

After the operation is completed they wheel you into this room where you attempt to regain consciousness.

Not just from the operation, but from falling off that cot again.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Decorating and Zoom

After he had completed his rock around the Christmas tree and worked his way back up the chimney, only having to replace two bricks this time - (he needs some Slim-fast) -, off went Santa Claus to his next delivery.

The sleigh went so fast that the reindeer must have had jets embedded in their hooves. It was either jet propulsion or they were experiencing the short term benefits of steroids.

In any case, he discovered that his next house had been naughty all year, and you know what Santa does to someone who has been naughty all year. He was experiencing slight irregularity and therefore was in no hurry. To fill this time void, he began to exercise his cranium.

Struck by a bolt of inspiration he suddenly shouted literally from the rooftops “Aha! that’s how he does it!”--no, no,-- he didn’t shout the word “literally,” he shouted “aha that’s how he does it”. --

Only Santa Claus and I now know my secret to decorating a house at this time of year.

The subconscious information withheld from you has caused a feeling of guilt to build up within me that this year I feel it will be beneficial to share mine and Santa’s trade secret with our many fans (opportunity rarely presents itself, hence a little self-adoration! ). I am hoping that this revelation will act as our relief valve and will save you time.

Nonetheless, being too cheap to hire a lawyer, I am not absolutely sure that I am not breaking some sort of law. I doubt that I am but, just in case, please don’t send the authorities to arrest me.

The rule of thumb is:  --it’s O.K. to break the law, but where criminals make their huge mistake, is that they allow themselves to be caught--

Well anyway, the very first operation in my routine of decorating is to move the ornaments from the attic to the second floor. In that there are many intriguing ornaments this only takes me one week.

After ample rest, which is generally another week, the ornaments are moved from the second floor to the first.

I do possess enough experience to know that there must come an additional weeks rest between this operation and the official time of beginning house decoration.

In that we like to have our decorations up by the day after Thanksgiving, scheduling dictates that I begin the first operation the day after Labor Day. However, I recommend that you begin in late August as this will allow you plenty of time.

This Christmas decorating generally presents a conflict with fertilizing the lawn at the beginning of fall.

The very first move in the decorating procedure is to make sure that all the bulbs on the strands burn as brightly as they did last year. --Really, to discover whether they burn at all!

Bulbs that shine brightly from one year to the next have become an extreme rarity.

To check your bulbs to discover whether they give off that radiant glow of last year, it is necessary to lay the strands of lights on the floor.

I must admit to you that I possess very few negative traits. However, one is that I do have is bad balance.

Most years at exactly this point in the operation I lose said balance and end up playing “hop-scotch” with the lights.

This is a segment of the operation, which I recommend you avoid at all costs, as it will immediately present the loss of good bulbs. A mystery presents itself, when the number that I step on is always six.

It then becomes necessary to locate those electrical do-dads which are also rarely in the same place I left them last year. Remember--I am married.

I fully expected them to remain on the dining room table for 10 months.

These “do-dads” are the plugs, multiple outlets etc.

Now the following segment is where an additional mystery evolves, which is far more crucial.

I begin with perfectly, efficiently, burning lights. In that we have a two story house, it generally takes me 2 days to string the lights and when I am finished doing the ladder thing and have the lights all strung and in place--those lights never burn--.

I conclude that there must be an electrical short somewhere in the line.

The ladder is retrieved from its place of storage, but I can never locate the short. (I thought it was six that I broke!! as our lights will not shine if there is one broken bulb.) This may seem like a suspense thriller, in that there is a third mystery that presents itself. Why are you never able to detect a broken bulb until it has been in the attic for a year?

Out of the last 35 years of Christmas decorations, ½ have been spent with brightly colored Christmas lights, but they are only evident during the daylight hours.

Which meant that for 17 years, at this time of year, my only remaining consolation is looking forward to Easter.

Friday, July 8, 2011

The Biggest Waste

The little boy thought and thought and finally said, “Why--why, it’s a red wagon that has been painted blue.”

“I’m sorry son, that is not the correct answer. As good a try as that was you do not win our two week, all expense trip to Jamaica,” said the master of ceremonies.

“But, here is your consolation prize,” handing the child a doggy bag.

“I’d like to repeat the question one more time. -- In your mind what is the biggest waste in this country?”

Up walked a construction worker to try his luck. As he gingerly approached the M/C he stopped and spoke directly into the microphone, to which he apparently got too close, because the sound was squeaky, “Why it’s that young, curvaceous and attractive blonde woman who has a sexual orientation other than heterosexual.”

“That was also close, but I’m afraid that answer is not correct either,” came the rather vociferous reply. “Although, you must be commended for your effort with this consolation prize.”

“Now, who will be our next contestant?” the M/C blurted out as he walked in front of the audience.

“Let’s try you,” pointing his finger at an attractive lady in the fifth row.

Ironically, she was a statuesque blonde who had just changed her sexual orientation, which caused her to be possessed with the urge to throw rotten tomatoes at the previous contestant. She also knew it was he and his crew that always watched her walk by their job-site on her way to work, etc.

She like the little boy, gave her medulla oblongata a workout.

“Yes,” she uttered, “It’s that box of condoms you give as a present to a man who is impotent. That has got to be the biggest waste.”

“Oh gee! You’ll never know how close you came to the correct answer, but, that is not the answer I was looking for, so here is your doggy bag.”

Then a seemingly obscure, wise old gentleman, sitting in the back row yelled out, “I know the correct answer," as he lowered his hand.

“Yes, the gentlemen in the rear shall now be recognized.” said the M/C.

“The biggest waste is the sound system on the TV set that is used in a restaurant.”

“And that is correct, yelled out the M/C , emulating, well, what can I say about the coincidence, the TV evangelist delivering the last part of his sermon. “And you, sir, are the lucky winner of that two week trip to paradise, which I’ll outline here for you later. Just how did you come up with that answer?”

To that the old man replied,  "Every time the wife and me eat out I watch the TV picture, but I never hear anything. Tried getting down one of them wall sets and hitting it with a baseball bat, but, it somehow made the picture worse - and dadburn - it was still silent.

"Figur’in there are close to 1 million restaurants in the US of A ,there is a big valley of silence out there.

"In fact, when we do eat out, I always ask my wife to be sure and watch the TV, but she never seems to get the hint. I think that when the next time rolls around, I’ll say that the present I want the most for my birthday is for her to be more like that there television set.”

P.S. “And for that two week, all expenses paid vacation to Alberta, Canada, guess what was in the doggy bag.” -Hint- Was it that glob of glue that caused us to ring a man’s doorbell, light the sack with a match, place the sack in front of the door and then run as fast as we could in the opposite direction?

Helpful hint: the sack should be as thin as possible.