Viewing posts from March 2015

Dogs and Cats

DogAndCatI’m an animal lover. Now, this has nothing to do with love making or growing up on an isolated farm with goats and sheep, which, for the record, I did not do. But it does have everything to do with our (mostly) fuzzy, furry friends, dogs and cats. These are the greatest beings on the face of the Earth. Far better than Man ever will be. Man was the last thing God created which makes me think that maybe He was having second thoughts about the idea. Anyone who watches the news these days might question His final decision. Personally, I think God should’ve stopped at dogs and cats. He could have then had an extra day off and a lot fewer prayers to answer. If you think your email inbox is full, just imagine what God’s prayer inbox looks like every morning.   

Dogs are my favorite animals of all time. I love cats, too, and have had several really cool ones in my life. Five at once when I also had two 85-pound dogs and a 140-pound wife. We all slept on the same bed at the same time. They’re all gone now. Except for the 140-pound ex-. 

berneseThe thing is, of all dogs, I love big dogs the most. They’re just goofier. I love goofy dogs. I wish domestic cats would come in that same size. How cool would that be? But there are a couple of downsides to that. Like cutting the nails or trying to give a pill to a cat that big. Even if you’re good at it, there will be blood and it won’t be the cat’s.

Another downside is that, unlike dogs, cats are predatory. I wouldn’t want any member of my family to come downstairs in the morning to find a dead, headless, half-eaten carcass on the front porch “Welcome” mat, then realize it’s me. The cat would, of course, be strutting around gloating–“Hey, look what I killed for you. If the head was still attached you’d see how much it looked like dad.”

FrenchPoodleOf the 400 or so dog breeds, there’s only one I feel sorry for. The French Poodle. If ever there was a dog that could have a justifiably high suicide rate, the French Poodle would be it. Any creature that is always fru-fru’d up with those stupid haircuts and pretty bows is going to have some serious self-esteem issues. It’s a wonder that we never see packs of wild French Poodles terrorizing the countryside. But then again, how much street cred can you have when you look like a balloon animal.

PoodleColorThis is a shame because French Poodles are highly intelligent dogs. To Poodle owners who sculpt their dogs’ hair, I say this: it’s a dog, not a freakin’ hedge. If you want topiary, buy a tope, okay? Male French Poodles have it worse than female French Poodles, by far. Female French Poodles look happy when they’re coiffed. They have the pretty bows, they’ve spent hours at the hairdresser’s getting haircuts and pedicures. Males never look happy. Owners, of course, defend the fancy haircutting. “They love the way they look. My poodle stares at himself in the mirror for hours.” I’m sure he does. He’s thinking, “First, my testicles. Now this.”

If you’re going to give your male Poodle a fancy haircut, at least do something creative, something manly, something that won’t damage his ego. You know, like sculpt his hair to look like the Manhattan skyline, a ’57 Chevy or an aircraft carrier. Even making his tail in the shape of the Eiffel Tower would be a step in the right direction.

A final word to owners of male French Poodles. Leave them alone. If you don’t follow my advice, I hope you come back as a male French Poodle with your dog as your owner.

Winter Takes a Hike

I am so happy that winter is over that even though it’s only 42 degrees outside, I’m ready to fire up that brand spanking-new, shiny $900 grill sitting on my neighbor’s porch. If only they weren’t home.

Here it is officially spring and it snowed for the first two days. It’s not that I don’t like snow. I just wish that it’d only snow on lawns, mountaintops and roofs that are ice dam-proof. Stay off the streets and sidewalks and let it still be 80 degrees and I’m fine. And when it starts to melt, again, stay off the streets because you mess up my nice clean car.

PenguinSymbolThe thing I hate most about winter is it’s cold. Cold has its place, though. It’s called the refrigerator. That’s where cold belongs and that’s where it should stay. Oh, you like cold weather? Go live with the penguins. Want to really “chill out”? Clean out your freezer and hop in there for an hour or two.

MotherNatureWinter prevents us from doing a lot of stuff. Like keeping warm. Which, of course, defeats the whole purpose of being cold. Mother Nature didn’t make it cold just so we could warm up. She did it to show who’s in charge. I think that’s one of the reasons our winters have been getting worse. “Mom” ain’t happy. An old TV ad used to say, “You can’t fool Mother Nature.” Yeah, well, you shouldn’t piss her off, either, and that’s what we’ve done. Here she flexes her muscles and makes it cold and what happens? We learn to make fire. We can’t go swimming in the winter. So we build indoor pools. Wool isn’t warm enough. So now we have heat-retaining fabrics. These clothes keep me so warm that I can cook dinner in my shirt while I walk to the mailbox. By the time I get back, it’s ready to serve. Some would call that disgusting. Maybe, but I only accept that opinion from those who have attended my dinner parties.

LightningHitsCarCars didn’t always have heat, but I’m glad they do. Mother Nature countered with foggy windshields. We created the defroster. She came back with foggy rear windows. We put a defroster in the back and for the side windows. Nyeh nyeh! Car heating and cooling systems have become so sophisticated that we can create whatever micro-climate we want and Mom can’t do a darn thing about it. She hates that. In the middle of winter I once made the inside of my car so hot and humid that it rained. Not to be outdone, she gave me lightning. Mother Nature 1, me 0. I had to get towed. So did my car.

WalMartShortsOne thing that always bugs me about winter is that whenever I go food shopping, there’s always some clown who comes in wearing shorts. You’ve seen this guy. Big, burly, with legs that could support the whole Duggar family. And it’s always a guy. You never see women wearing shorts in the winter. Never. Women don’t want to look sexy in the supermarket. The last thing they want to do is to give us guys an opening line. “Aren’t you cold?” “Not since I was in prison for killing a guy in the supermarket.”

RickyGervaisNotCoolSo what’s this guy trying to prove, that he’s a Real Man? I don’t care how much of a “real man” he thinks he is, when a part of his male anatomy hits the cold, unlike Punxsutawney Phil, he won’t be able to see its shadow. What that means for the next six weeks, I have no idea.  

I never look at this guy. I don’t want to give him the satisfaction of thinking that I think he’s cool because he can walk around in shorts during a blizzard and I can’t. As if putting on a pair of pants would make him overheat. What he fails to realize is that the only reason he can parade around like he does is because his Body Mass Index is the same as a sea lion. They both can swim in icy water without a wet suit. Which is good because a sea lion doesn’t make enough money to buy a wet suit.

I can withstand hot weather far better than cold. So yes, I’m happy that winter is gone. Ecstatic. The only thing I fear about warmer weather is going to the supermarket. If that guy was wearing shorts in the middle of winter, I don’t want to be around when he shows up this summer.

MarblesMind Marbles:

Why are flannel shirts always plaid? 

Whatever happened to polka dots?

I can’t remember the last time I said that I can’t remember the last time I said that.

Why isn’t there a book called “Ventriloquism for Dummies”?

The Greatest Country in the World

USAno1I think we should stop touting ourselves as the greatest country in the world. Every president does it. Every politician does it. Even though I believe we are, it’s bragging, and what did our parents tell us about bragging? And how much did we like kids who bragged? So here we are bragging to ourselves and the world about how great we are, how wonderful this country is above all others EVER, then we get mad because everybody wants to come here. It’d be like Mercedes saying they’re the greatest car in the world, then wondering why people are lining up in their showrooms.

To be fair, I think we should have other countries be “the greatest country in the world” for a while, say, for five years. We’ll give it a code name for now: Project “Wow! Look at That Country!” To start the ball rolling, we’ll pick some place not so obvious, just to shake it up and to let even smaller countries know they’ve got a shot at the title. I think some place like Oman should be the first choice. Most people don’t know where Oman is. I don’t know where Oman is, and I don’t care because I’m not going to any place if I don’t where it is. So we give them bragging rights for five years. We’ll even throw in an ad campaign—”Man, O man. Oman!” No charge.

In the meantime, while everybody has gone to Oman, we’ll have fewer people here. Then we can fix all our roads, bridges and borders. Rebuild New Orleans, Detroit and other devastated areas. Give the whole country a new coat of paint. Change the sheets. Give it a good airing out.

MissOmanAt the end of the five years, we have a contest. We’ll hold it here because part of the deal is that we’re neutral and no longer eligible to be “the greatest country in the world.” We televise it like the Miss America pageant. Each country sends the two best-looking people they have, one male, one female. We base the whole voting on which country sent the best-looking people. And the sexiest. We do this because everybody knows that you can’t be the best country in the world if you don’t have the best-looking, sexiest people. The world loves beautiful, sexy people. Our celebrities are beautiful, sexy people. We idolize them, love them, want to be them. Except for the Kardashians.

Oman MapAfter a few decades of others being “the greatest country in the world,” these and other countries will see it’s no fun having that title. It’s like holding the Olympics for five years, but without the fun. Too many people, too many responsibilities, too much cost and too many headaches. They’ll be pleading with us, begging us, willing to pay us trillions of dollars to be the greatest country in the world again. We’ll play hard to get and use it as leverage to set new rules. No more bad-mouthing the USA, no more asking for money we need here, no more trying to blow us up and relying on us to do everything. Once they agree, we get the title back, we’ve got enough money now to pay off our national debt and everybody’s happy.

No longer will we brag about being the greatest country in the world. We won’t have to. Everybody else will gladly do it for us.

Btw, I found out where Oman is. I’m still not going there.

MarblesMind Marbles:

Life can be very unfair. I once wrote an article about plagiarism and won an award for it. But they took it back ‘cause I plagiarized it. What did they think I was going to do?

I can understand why women don’t want to work for companies with glass ceilings.  Guys below them would be looking up all day long.

Sometimes what I really need is a good dose of adult supervision.

The Myths of Profanity


scrabbleI love words. I use them every day. I’m using them right now. Nice words. I also curse. Frequently. It’s not that I do it consciously for effect. Usually, I’m the only one around who hears it. It’s just that it’s part of my everyday speech. Of course, I know there are limits. Should I ever meet the Pope, I know better than to say, “Cool f—ing hat!”

So why is it that some folks run screaming from the room when certain words are spoken while others mindlessly throw the terms around like confetti? As a veteran confetti thrower I ask, “What is so offensive about profanity?” Whatever happened to “sticks and stones…”? In a world that has become desensitized to so much worse, why are a handful of words cause for some to reach for their inhalers?

What’s happened with cursing, swearing, whatever you want to call it, is that society has labeled certain words as “bad” and are not to be use by any civilized human being. Yeah, well, as a civilized human being I say, “F— that!”

These words have a purpose. We use them to vent anger or frustration. Try this experiment. Drive really fast and erratically around town. Suddenly, you look in your rearview mirror and see a police car with lights a-flashing right on your tail. Perfect. Now, what’s the first thing you’re going to say? Sure, there might be a short list of words that you’d use. But imagine you’re pulled over by the police and they find a kilo of cocaine in your trunk. What are you going to say now? Exactly. One and only one word. The BADDEST word. In that same situation I imagine even Mother Teresa would use it. That would never have happened, of course. Mother Teresa didn’t drive.

I’m getting way ahead of myself, which is easy to do when you’re a Gemini. Let’s ease into this a bit more gently with a short once-was-but-is-no-longer-a-real profanity which, depending on how it’s used, could still be offensive to some.

“Ass,” as we know, is a word that describes a donkey, a part of the body or someone who’s a jerk. A seemingly offensive usage could be what my brother told me the other day when he said he busted his ass to get to work. If you’re offended, let’s dissect this from the speaker’s point of view. If someone says they busted their ass to do something, instead of being so egotistical about how it affects you–“How could they say such an awful thing?”—and consider the victim and think, “That’s really got to hurt!” After all, it’s their tush, you know? There’s not a lot of upside when you bust your ass. Where do they go to get it fixed? A glutealogist? But how are they going to get there? They can’t drive. Their ass is broken and they can’t sit down. If they can’t sit down, this might require some kind of physical therapy so they can relearn how to sit. And, if so, is it covered by their insurance? Do they even have insurance?

MadScientistSee, there’s always another side to consider. I hope you realize that being judgmental helps no one. By now your feelings of offensiveness and outrage should have been replaced with compassion and understanding. As for my brother, had he actually broken his ass, it wouldn’t have been too bad. He’s a pharmacist and is on his feet all day anyway.


For the Ladies—Men Explained, Kind of

WomanOnTopI think women should be in charge of running more things. I’m not making a political statement. I’m just saying in general. I think it’s only fair. Men have been driving the bus for a long time now and look where we are. Could women do any worse?

I know a lot of guys think that women aren’t as smart as men. These are some of the same guys who, as kids and possibly even now, try to woo a woman by smashing an empty beer can on the their foreheads. Yeah, women love that. That alone shows how smart those men are and also why they’re brain damaged. Even admitting that women are at least as smart as men is about as flattering as telling a woman she doesn’t look nearly as old as she probably is.

SumerI’m not bashing my gender, but what proof of our superior intelligence can we guys offer? What greatness have we as men achieved that can’t be counterbalanced by a dozen stupid, awful, horrific things? Let’s take a look at where this flaw in our DNA came from to see how things went so wrong so quickly for us.

From Day One, or more accurately, Day Six, man screwed up. His name, as we all know, was Adam, which is Sumerian for “loser.” Why anybody would want to name their child after the first and biggest screw-up the world has ever known is beyond me.

GodAdamSo here we are, ladies. The universe was almost a week old. The paint wasn’t even dry yet and Adam was already in trouble, which is why God only had one day of rest. Monday morning He had to be back at work retooling the whole planet all because of what that jerk Adam did on Saturday. This also explains why halfway through Sunday we all get anxious about returning to work on Monday. It’s called “payback.” For all the good that Adam did for us, he may as well have been Mr. Bean. 

I can only imagine what Eve thought about all this after Adam bit the apple:

EVE: Great. Two people on Earth and one of us is an idiot.

ADAM: I didn’t eat that apple. It was a bite. And it wasn’t me. It was that other guy.

EVE: What other guy?

ADAM: I think he said his name was Biff.

EVE: Adam, there are only two of us.

ADAM: Oh, like you know.

Within minutes of his creation, Adam had already invented stupidity, arrogance, denial, not taking responsibility, and the argument. Things were not boding well for us men.

Ever since then, men have been trying to compensate for that first blunder. We pumped ourselves up. We named things after ourselves. Manhattan, Manitoba, invented “taking it like a man,” “man up,” “the Man Cave” (that says a lot right there), and “man”ipulation. All this is somewhat balanced out by a natural creation that somehow ended up with the appropriate name “man”ure.

GPSEons later, there has been change on our part, though I admit, not enough. Most of us men realize that we don’t know it all, that there’s still room for improvement. For example, many of us absolutely refuse to listen to our wives/girlfriends about directions when we’re driving. We don’t need a woman’s help. So what do we do? We program our destination into our female-voiced GPS. Btw, one company tried a male-voiced GPS. Looked good on paper, but it failed. One excerpt: “In fifty feet, take a left. I don’t know where it goes but let’s find out.”

Hopefully, this helps explain, in part, why we men are the way we are. Look at our gene pool. Perhaps things would have turned out a lot better had God initially put three people on Earth—Adam, Eve and a psychotherapist.

MarblesMind Marbles:

Speaking of which, why is being a psychotherapist okay, but being a psycho therapist isn’t?

I think the king wanted Humpty Dumpty to die. Sure, he sent all his horses and all his men, but if he really wanted Humpty to live, why didn’t he just send a paramedic?

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