April 21, 2024

The Petting Zoo Diet

                                                 The girl sat down across from me And gave her mane a swish. She opened up her menu as She crowed, “I can’t eat fish!” “You can’t?” I asked. She mooed, and said, “Nor cheesecake anymore, Or anything like brownies or The things that I adore. No sugar, lard, or olive oil, No beef or bird or pork, No albatross or crocodile will Ever grace my fork. Now, rutabagas I can eat, But I don’t see…

Cynicism

cur-mudg-eon (cur-muj’un), n. [origin unknown] 1. archaic: a crusty, ill-tempered, churlish old man. 2. modern: anyone who hates hypocrisy and pretense and has the temerity to say so; anyone with the habit of pointing out unpleasant facts in an engaging and humorous manner. “Idealism is what precedes experience; cynicism is what follows.” — David T. Wolf “A cynic is a man who, when he smells flowers, looks around for a coffin.” — H. L. Mencken “My pessimism extends to the point of even suspecting the sincerity of the pessimists.” — Jean Rostand “No matter how cynical you get, it is impossible to…

L-o-l-a Lola

Q: My son has found an imaginary friend. He calls her Lola. I think he got the name off a cartoon show. It seems she advises him on matters he chooses not to discuss with us. So far, I haven’t seen any negative affects on his social behavior or his relationships with other people. He talks with Lola when he thinks no one else is around, but I have observed him more than a few times in lengthy conversation. Should I interfere or leave him be? A: I’d normally say leave him be, but the accompanying picture you sent shows…

Horoscopes for September 7-13, 2014

CAPRICORN (January 19 – February 16) You will find it effortless to turn away from the dramatically unsocial people in your life and not ever look back again. Probably because they can run so fast. AQUARIUS (February 16 – March 11) Some forecasts have pies and rubber chickens flying in your path. That is ridiculous. The stars show you dodging gluten free carrot cakes and rubber duckies. PISCES (March 20 – April 18) Just like a long race in the Olympics, you may want to pace yourself. Winning the first lap isn’t important, it’s finishing first. It’s a metaphor for…

Younger Booty Bother

Dear Frankly, I’m 54 and broke up a 10-year relationship with a younger man a year ago. And he now has a girlfriend (28). He’s 45. But now he has this girlfriend and it bothers me and I don’t know why. I know I have to get over him and I was OK until I found out he had someone else. Do most women do this or is something wrong with me? I should have got out a long time ago. Please tell me, Frankly, how do I go about getting along with the rest of my life? Pausing with…

Little Sentence for Little Man

LITTLE LEGAL NEWS: A Nebraska judge said a 5-foot-1 man convicted of sexually assaulting a child was too small to survive in prison, and gave him 10 years of probation instead. A drastic rise in serious crimes committed by “little people” in the state of Nebraska is expected. HIGH FASHION NEWS: An Indiana high school student, a male student who has worn women’s clothes to school all year, was turned away from his high school prom because he was wearing a dress. Kevin Logan, 18, went to the West Side High School prom on Friday in a slinky fuchsia gown…

More Creatures from the Land of Legend

Q: In the ancient language of Cornwall, the name MORGAWR, meaning “Sea Giant,” describes an enormous marine monster that lives in the waters of Falmouth Bay–a long necked sea serpent, similar in appearance to the famous “Nessie” of Loch Ness. Cornwall is known as the “Land of Legend” and, until fairly recently, the Great Cornish Sea Serpent was regarded as part of that legend–a romantic rumor, a mythological beast, a figment of the Celtic imagination, along with pixies, mermaids and spriggans. Are you aware of recent sightings of this serpent? A: Sorry, no. Not since March 1976 has there been…

Horoscopes for August 31-September 6, 2014

CAPRICORN (January 19 – February 16) People will talk out of the sides of their mouths this month and your communication skills will be tested. Fortunately, for you, you speak fluent jibberish. AQUARIUS (February 16 – March 11) This month, try to avoid signing or agreeing to anything, and things will turn out all right, like those traffic tickets or divorce papers or prenuptial agreement. PISCES (March 20 – April 18) Love and kisses and romance and more love and more kisses and more romance and more and more and more love and kisses and romance. Too bad you’re alone….

Understanding the Old World

One thing I’ve noticed that causes confusion among wine consumers is how to decipher European wine labels. Consumers from the US and other developing wine markets tend to understand wine based on the predominant grape, meaning you buy a Cabernet Sauvignon or Chardonnay, etc. The vast majority of Europe, however, traditionally names wines after the region the wine is produced: Bordeaux, Burgundy, Chianti, etc. The main problem this presents for consumers is that they’re often not familiar with what the wine regions of Europe have to offer in the bottle. Just what is Chianti? What are you drinking when you…

Strange Encounter on a Summer Night

Q: In Jerome Clark’s book, “Unexplained,” is a story of 13-year-old Harry Anderson, who had a strange encounter on a summer night in 1919. Anderson claimed to have seen a column of 20 little men marching in single file toward him. The moonlight made them clearly visible and Anderson could see that they were dressed in leather knee pants with suspenders. The men were shirtless, bald and had pale white skin, talking in unison. Young Anderson couldn’t make out what they were saying. Are you familiar with this? A: Of course. They were singing, “Hi ho, hi ho, it’s off…

Deja Vu

There’s really no point in my going on vacation. I should just save my money, because no matter where I go, I’m reminded of home. For example, I went to Alaska and saw nothing new. The dog sled team, barking and eagerly straining at the harness, reminded me of the department where I work–well, except for the straining and eager part. I even went to see some glaciers, because I was sure there were none in Arizona. Calving is the term used to describe huge amounts of ice falling off the face of a glacier into the water. This glacier…

Please Forward

                                                  I know that your intentions are No less than heaven sent; I know your altruistic goal Is pure enlightenment. I know you think my slate is clean, My mind an empty jug, And that the stuff you forward is All welcomed with a hug. This email is to let you know The opposite is true: You’ve got it wrong, you’ve missed the bus; You haven’t got a clue! In fact, when I see “FORWARD TO:” I feel the…

Frog Doc

Once upon a time in the swampy, soupy, humid, snake-infested, stinking, goopy, dismal swamps of the Old South, there lived a man called the Frog Doctor. Nobody knew what his real name was. They just called him “Doc.” Doc had been around for as long as anyone could remember. Nobody could think of a time when Doc hadn’t been around and nobody could imagine the swampy, soupy, humid, snake-infested, stinking, goopy, dismal swamps without him. Doc was a fixture in the swamps. Doc was a legend in the swamps. Doc was known throughout the swamps and was sought out by…

Horoscopes for August 17-23, 2014

ARIES (March 21 – April 19) You will begin channeling in ancient Sumerian. At first people will be impressed. But soon a translator reveals you’ve been channeling a really bad stoned comedian. TAURUS (April 20 – May 20) You will try to avoid contact with people this month. After exhausting every hiding place, you’ll choose a closet in the Capital, but will find it full of politicians. GEMINI (May 21 -June 20) You will be dogged by a couple on a scooter all month. Finally, you’ll stop and ask them to stop. Instead, they will become the first in your flock of faithful…

The Little Pearl

Ever wonder what’s in a name? I worked in Portugal a few years back and recall a conversation with the English winemaker about the meaning of names. He told me about his Portuguese friend with a very proper and formal surname that basically happened to translate into English as “all day long, I ride motorcycles.” Most people think English names have little meaning, but if you research the origins of any name you’ll usually find some meaning behind it. Take Margaret Thatcher for an example. A thatcher is someone who traditionally built and repaired old straw roofs. Margaret actually comes…

Computers

cur-mudg-eon (cur-muj’un), n. [origin unknown] 1. archaic: a crusty, ill-tempered, churlish old man. 2. modern: anyone who hates hypocrisy and pretense and has the temerity to say so; anyone with the habit of pointing out unpleasant facts in an engaging and humorous manner. “Programming today is a race between software engineers striving to build bigger and better idiot-proof programs, and the Universe trying to produce bigger and better idiots. So far, the Universe is winning.” — Rich Cook “Computer dating is fine, if you’re a computer.” — Rita Mae Brown “All sorts of computer errors are now turning up. You’d be…

Soulmate Reversal

Dear Frankly, Why would a man tell me (again and again) that we are soulmates, that he’s been waiting his whole life for me and that he wants to have a baby with me—and then suddenly tell me we are not right for each other and end it with no explanation? We dated for over 10 months and had, I thought, a great relationship. We never fought and no problems ever came up between us. I don’t understand. I was expecting a proposal, not a break-up! I’m devastated. What happened? Sad and Confused Dear Sad, How should I know? I…

Ancient Engravings Resembling Electric Lights and Generators

Q: The temple walls in Denera, dedicated to the Egyptian goddess Hathor, contain engravings that resemble electric lights and generators. Room 17 shows a depiction of braided cables leading to a box that engineers have identified as a primitive Crookes tube. The Crookes tube was the forerunner of the modern television tube. A van de Graaf generator is also portrayed, representing the generation of electricity. Egyptologists date this temple art to between 300 B.C. and 30 B.C. Is it possible there was electricity and television that long ago? A: Who knows? I just wonder how often they lost their signal…

Horoscopes for April 6-12, 2014

ARIES (Aprch 21 – April 19) Closed-door meetings may seem intimidating, but they aren’t always about you. Also, just because you’re paranoid, doesn’t mean you’re not being followed. TAURUS (April 20 – May 20) In April, the rising of the new moon could very well bring you a new partner, possibly making your old partner flash you with a new moon. Yikes! GEMINI (May 21 -June 20) This month, the bright light of the Sun shines on your house of dreams, revealing what were once private thoughts. Everyone will then know you’re a kinky weirdo. CANCER (June 21 – July…

Horoscopes for August 3-9, 2014

CAPRICORN (January 19 – February 16) This month, try to avoid signing or agreeing to anything, and things will turn out all right, like those traffic tickets or divorce papers or prenuptial agreement. AQUARIUS (February 16 – March 11) Love and kisses and romance and more love and more kisses and more romance and more and more and more love and kisses and romance. Too bad you’re alone. PISCES (March 20 – April 18) Some call you childlike, and on a month like this it’s hard to deny. It’s so hot you’ll dig a big hole in your yard, strap…

Pelican Trust

PETA has declared Arizona BPUF or “Brown Pelican UnFriendly.” PETA in this case, stands for Pelican Enlightenment Trust Alliance, and the whole story started this way. For some unknown reason, brown pelicans have started showing up in Arizona. Either they were blown off course by the monsoons, they were brought over as pets by migrating Californians and have since outsmarted their captives, or their California captors released them once the unpolluted air allowed a couple of brain cells to kick in and they realized that a brown pelican makes a pretty lousy pet. My personal theory is that they, as…

Horoscopes for July 27-August 2, 2014

CAPRICORN (January 19 – February 16) This month, your imagination, dreams and fantasies will provide other people with entertainment. Little did anyone know what a comedian you can be. AQUARIUS (February 16 – March 11) You are in super great shape on the extremely the whole month of July. Look for really good news and lots of wet, sloppy kisses. Somebody’s getting a puppy! PISCES (March 20 – April 18) You’re better off kicking back and observing than trying to make things happen in July. If you can eavesdrop a bit, you’ll learn what they really think about you. ARIES…

Illegal Immigration Protests

ILLEGAL ALIEN NEWS: Widespread demonstrations broke out across America recently protesting the huge number of illegal immigrants from Canada entering this country illegally and taking high-paying jobs like radio announcers, actors and television anchors away from nearly qualified Americans. MORE PROTEST NEWS: Homeless people from major cities in the United States have moved from the sidewalks and allies to the streets to complain about the poor treatment being given to packages by uncaring delivery personnel. More and more cardboard collected has been found damaged and unusable as a decent shelter. ABSTINENCE NEWS: According to a Harvard University study, 52 percent…

A Romantic Dinner–and a Sprinkle of Cheese

Women are impressed by lots of stuff, but none more than the romantic dinner. Nobody knows what causes this reaction. Scientific studies suggest that women’s brains become disabled in the face of evidence suggesting that men can actually cook. It’s also well known that women will stare in slack-jawed disbelief when confronted with the notion that men are capable of being romantic. Thus it’s plain to see when these two factors are combined a woman will become completely helpless–a condition that usually occurs only when there’s a tire to be changed or a spider crawling up the living room wall….

Your Dreams Can Guide Your Life

Q: Most of us are unaware that dreams are telling us about the future. Only a handful of us are encouraged and coached with the skills to dream true. Most of us are only aware that we dream the future when frightened by a dream of death or tragedy that happened in real life. Being prompted by our dreams of what might be happening in our real life, we can most probably alter the probability of the tragedy by actions that we can take. Do you believe your dreams can show you things and guide your life? A: Yes. Living…

The Garden of Edam

                                      I’ve always been a person who Could conjure up the bucks; At eight years-old I biked the park And raffled off the ducks! My latest scam requires a move To Nazareth, P.A. To launch my Christian cheese shop and To profit from the fray. “The Garden of Edam” is its name, With sculpted cheese on-line: There’s “Adam and Eve in Provolone” And “Noah’s Curds in Brine.” There’s “Matthew in Sharp Cheddar” and There’s “Mark in Tasty Brie,” There’s “Luke in Mozzarella”…

Chinese Man’s Sweat Turns Green

Q: Cheng Shuguo, 52, of Wuhan City, says he felt no discomfort, but went to a hospital because he was worried about his sweat turning green. Doctors thoroughly cleaned his armpits but it took only 10 minutes for his sweat to turn a piece of white gauze green again. They have carried out blood tests on Cheng, but found everything to be normal. “We can’t find the cause,” admitted a spokesman for the hospital which reported the case to the media in the hope of finding a solution. What could be causing this phenomenon? A: JELLO.   Q: Some pilots…

Marry Your Sister’s Ex?

Dear Frankly, I am involved with my sister’s ex. We are in love and have recently moved in together. I am hoping our relationship be accepted by our families. I am worried about hurting my sister’s feelings. We found out that it is legal to marry each other here. He has asked and I want to. I guess what I’ve been looking for is someone’s blessing. My sister left the marriage and I cannot help that things worked out this way. Is there any way I can overcome our family issues? Confused Carla Dear Confused, When would it not be…

Summer Bubbles Over

The champagne/sparkling wine category has some of the more underutilized drinks in the wine world. People for some reason only tend to break out a bottle of bubbles for holidays and occasions instead of grabbing a bottle for everyday use, despite the fact that most wines in this category are extremely versatile as a culinary pairing. Several wines in the sparkling category are light, crisp, and very refreshing since they’re effervescent and served at ice cold temperatures, so they make an excellent option for light summer drinking. Let’s take a look at some of the less common wines in the…

The Counting Habit

I am a “counter.” I count stuff. For example, I know that it takes twenty shovels of gravel to fill my wheelbarrow and ten wheelbarrows to move a ton. I know that there is always an even number of rows of kernels, (between twelve and sixteen), on an ear of sweet corn, and twenty steps between each floor in the building where I work. I also know there is always between fifty-five and seventy-two people in the early church service. The thing that I didn’t know is that this counting obsession is hereditary. My mother counts things too, as did…