October 2, 2022

Virtue vs. Decadence

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. “Nobody is more dangerous than he who imagines himself pure in heart; for his purity, by definition, is unassailable.” — James Baldwin “Every man knows his follies and often they are the most interesting thing he has got.” — Josh Billings “The good people sleep much better at night than the bad people. Of course, the bad people enjoy…

Kelsey Grammer Speaks to the Dead

Q: I read where Kelsey Grammer speaks to the dead, including a 2,000 year old ghost called Alex, who teaches him about good and evil. The Frasier star has lost a number of family members to tragic and violent deaths, something he claims has strengthened his belief in an afterlife. His father was murdered by a gunman when he was 13, his sister was just 18 when she was robbed, raped and stabbed to death eight years later, and five years after that, his two half brothers were eaten by sharks. Grammer says: “I have communicated with many entities of…

Stealing Not Done by Clown

CRIME WAVE NEWS: Ronald MacDonald, an employee at a Manchester, N. H. Wendy’s Restaurant has been charged with stealing money from a safe. The 22-year-old MacDonald was detained at the store until police arrived after the crime was witnessed and reported by the manager. The sad part is the local paper felt it necessary to say he wasn’t related to Ronald McDonald, the clown. INDIANA INTELLIGENT DESIGN NEWS: Indiana Police were trying to determine the origin of a runaway ostrich that led officers on chase through neighborhood streets and yards. The bird eluded officers in St. John for about two…

Don’t Eat the Worm

In honor of Cinco de Mayo and all other great things Mexican, this month I’m going to talk about that exotic spirit from south of the border – tequila. Agave Tequila is the end product of fermenting and distilling the agave plant. All distillates produced from agave are actually known as mezcals (which is a whole other topic for future discussion), of which tequila is a special class. It’s like making the distinction between brandy and cognac. For a mezcal to qualify as tequila, it must come from a defined geographic area, which is mostly in the Mexican state of…

Love

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. “I recently read that love is entirely a matter of chemistry. That must be why my wife treats me like toxic waste.” — David Bissonette “Love is foolish…but I still might try it sometime.” — Floyd, Age 9 “You can’t buy love, but you can pay heavily for it.” — Henny Youngman “Ah, sweet pity. Where would my love…

Photographic and Audio Evidence of Paranormal Activity

Q: I heard a company called the Mid South Ghost Hunters have set up a continuously streaming web cam on the second floor of the Quetzal Internet Cafe in Memphis, Tennessee. We have investigated this site twice with positive results and have obtained photographic and audio evidence of paranormal activity. Do you agree they have captured the proof ghosts exist? A: I went to the webcam site. There was a vacant room with bare walls–no coffee, no furniture, no Internet and no ghosts. Not much of a cafe.   Q: Government scientists say the next sunspot cycle will be 30-percent…

Egyptians and Bosnians Used Illegal Alien Laborers From Mexico

Q: I read about an Egyptian researcher sent by Cairo who has said that a 2,300 ft hill in Bosnia did appear to be a primitive man made pyramid of uncertain age. He also said huge stone blocks found on the three sides of the hill used the same type of artificial cement as ancient Egyptian pyramids. Researchers also found a sandstone monolith in one of the tunnels with enigmatic symbols engraved on it. Could this mean there were others making giant polyhedrons pointing to the heavens while preserving their dead? A: There are also ancient pyramid like structures built…

Covertly Sowing His Oats?

Dear Frankly, I am a bit confused about my relationship. My boyfriend and I have been dating for more than five years. Things are going well and we have plans for marriage in the future. My confusion comes from my wanting us to live together. I don’t see the big deal, since we plan on spending the rest of our lives together. He says the time isn’t right. Is he balking because he still wants his freedom to roam and sew some more wild oats or am I being overly suspicious? What should I do? Made for Marriage Dear Made…

The Race to Zero

One recent trend I’ve noticed in the beverage world is the low calorie drink. It started with the rush to have the lowest number on light beers. It’s morphed into cocktails now with ready-to-serve brands geared towards the diet market. I’m not a fan of the trend in the slightest. Not because I disagree with healthy eating (or drinking), but because I disagree that these products are necessarily healthy choices versus more traditional options. That, and after trying many of them, I seriously believe consumers are short changing themselves on flavor just so they can have an extra serving of…

Hold Up!

CRIME NEWS: A robber who used a rusty pitchfork to stick up a South Carolina bank got away– and so far, finding him has been like looking for a needle in a haystack. The man, wearing sunglasses and a mask, entered Security Federal Bank and threatened employees with the 4-foot-long rusty pitchfork. The man took an undisclosed amount of money. The robber dropped the farm tool as the man got into a white van driven by a woman. No customers were in the bank during the holdup, and no one was injured. Locals are calling the event the American Gothic…

Causes of Sudden Pole Shifting

Q: Scientists have found evidence that the Earth might have flipped over in the past, completely shifting the orientation of its poles. The theory has been around for years that a large mountain range or supervolcano might unbalance the spinning Earth. The theory, known as true polar wander, postulates that if an object of sufficient weight ever formed far from the equator, the force of the planet’s rotation would gradually pull the heavy object away from the Earth’s axis. Could this have really happened? A: Yes. It happened millions of years ago, when man replaced dinosaurs and more recently when…

38 and Never Been Kissed!

Dear Frankly, I’m a 38 year old guy who, for whatever reason, has never kissed a woman. I know it is hard to believe, even laughable, but I’ve just never had the best of luck with the ladies. I’m not socially awkward–I can carry on a conversation and I’m fairly attractive, but I have never had that “first kiss” moment. I’ve avoided talking about my problem with friends, for fear of being looked down upon. What can I do to get in the game? Past My Prime Dear Past My, Good gracious. A woman almost always waits for her date…

Getting Older

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. “In the old days, it was not called ‘the Holiday Season’; the Christians called it ‘Christmas’ and went to church; the Jews called it ‘Hanukka’ and went to synagogue; the atheists went to parties and drank. People passing each other on the street would say ‘Merry Christmas!’ or ‘Happy Hanukka!’ or (to the atheists) ‘Look out for the wall!’”…

Stuff Disappears and Reappears in the Strangest Places

Q: We had just moved in to our new house. We had only been here two months and it was Christmastime. I had bought my brother a Christmas gift and I was showing it to my husband, then I put it back in my closet with the rest of our Christmas shopping. Then we never saw it again. This sort of thing has been happening to us for the whole year that we have been here. Stuff disappears and reappears in the strangest places, only to have something else vanish instead. Can spirits actually play tricks like this? A: Possibly….

Beware Drunk Moose–and Other Blue Law Irregularities

                            One of the lasting legacies of prohibition is a mishmash of laws by the Federal Government and the states in regulating alcohol. It gets even more complicated when localities get involved and add another layer of regulation. Our elected officials, in their infinite lack of wisdom, do manage to come up with some ridiculous offerings when regulating one of their favorite targets for social control. This month, just for amusement, I wanted to look at some of the various alcohol blue law favorites from around the…

Alternatives

BUSINESS NEWS: The value of Taser Company stock has been lost because of increasingly negative news coverage of the Taser gun, which uses 50,000 volts to stun its victims. There has been a heavy focus on incidents where suspects died after the gun was used on them. Taser contracted pathologist, Dr. Cyril Wecht, to review the cases and issue an independent opinion that other factors, such as drugs, caused the 40 so-called in-custody Taser-caused deaths. ALTERNATIVE REMEDIES NEWS: A new Excentric survey of adult Americans found that 36% of us use some kind of alternative or complementary therapy. The number…

Has the Age of Chaos Begun?

Q: I have been reading about the odd coincidence of hurricanes Katrina and Rita striking so soon near the same place. Then came the Guatemalan mudslide and the earthquake in Pakistan, all on the heels of the Bam earthquake and the tsunami in Southeast Asia. While skeptics see these natural disasters as unrelated, others say they are just the beginning of a chain of events leading to the world’s end. Has the Age of Chaos begun? A: I’m not quite sure what the Age of Chaos is supposed to mean. I’m sitting on land that was once ocean. This isn’t…

Define “Good Catch,” Please

Dear Frankly, I’m a thirty something, professional, financially successful male who has never had a long term, committed relationship. I usually ask out a girl I find attractive, go out a few times and then find something wrong with her and make myself unavailable when she calls. I think about how nice it would be to meet a great girl and settle down, but I never seem to meet girls that live up to my expectations. I think I’m a good catch. Can you help me find the girl of my dreams? Ready and Willing Dear Ready, First of all,…

Marriage

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. “The world has suffered more from the ravages of ill-advised marriages than from virginity.” — Ambrose Bierce “Insurance is like marriage. You pay, pay, pay, and you never get anything back.” — Al Bundy “I hate work. That’s why I got married.” — Peg Bundy “If variety is the spice of life, marriage is the big can of leftover…

Out of Body Experience

Q: In 1990, I was working at a Denny’s restaurant in Seattle, Washington. I was holding an empty bus tub, when all of a sudden, my feet started to feel a tingly sensation, like they were becoming numb–a falling asleep sensation that went up my entire body. Then my ears started to ring, then I felt I could not move. I tried, but I could not. Then I saw thousands of tiny silvery things floating around in front of me, then total blackness. Within seconds I had an Out Of Body Experience (OBE). I floated for a few seconds and…

Sulfate, Sulfite, Sulfide

One of the positive trends in the agriculture industry is the push toward natural farming and food production methods that are environmentally friendly. They promote healthy soils, and limit the potential for exposure to toxic chemicals in the food chain. The wine industry has been on the leading edge with organic farming methods, as well as low impact wine making in the cellar. One substance that leads to mass confusion is sulfur. I see this frequently in dealing with consumers, so this month I will address the role of sulfur in wine making, and why in limited amounts it’s considered…

Imprisoning

CRIME NEWS: One year ago, officials from Mexico City launched an ambitious crime-busting project crafted by Rudolph Giuliani. The former New York City mayor earned a $4.3 million dollar consulting fee. After implementing his strict law enforcement changes, Mexico City has seen a 28% reduction in squeegee windshield washing, a whopping 36% reduction in jay-walking and the prostitutes have relocated to a better section of the city. PRISON NEWS: The nation’s first faith-based women’s prison opened a couple of months ago near Tampa, Florida. The program combines vocational classes with worship, and creates an environment that allows and encourages self-reflection,…

Politics and the Status Quo

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. “There is no Energy Shortage. There is no Energy Crisis. There is a Crisis of Ignorance.” — R Buckminster Fuller “To be a great politician you need the ability to foretell what is going to happen tomorrow, next week, next month and next year. And to have the ability afterwards to explain why it didn’t happen.” — Winston Churchill…

UFOs Seen Hovering Above Illawong Beach

Q: I heard about an Australian, Donna Weller, who told The Daily Mercury newspaper that she had seen a UFO hovering above Illawong Beach following her along the Bruce Highway to Rockhampton. “There were three of them,” she said. “One behind the car and two to the side. It was unbelievable.” I’m a bit scared to tell you the truth. Donna captured video footage of the unidentified tailgaters. Do you believe this encounter happened? A: I’ve yet to see the video, reserving opinion. However, Aussies are well known for their humor and beer consumption, especially the women.   Q: A…

Blame the Ouija Board

Q: A passionate student of the paranormal and the occult experimented with a Ouija board. She tried to contact spirit entities through the board, but she had neglected to assume a prayerful attitude to guard against malignant influences. She felt as though another being was somehow influencing her thoughts and causing her to fantasize sexual images regarding her friends and classmates. Can messing with a Ouija board cause this? A: I guess. A lot of professional people would chalk it up to puberty, but hey, why not blame the Ouija board?   Q: I read an article stating that Earth’s…

Wedding Behavior Pickle

Dear Frankly, I recently attended my boyfriend’s sister’s wedding. I had met his family only once before. I had too much to drink at the reception and I know his parents noticed my behavior. My boyfriend said I was really pickled and had to take me home early. Should I mention this obvious mistake and apologize for it in a thank you note to his parents? On the other hand, will that remind them of my behavior? Flustered Franny Dear Flustered, That’s funny. Usually, it’s the best man that gets blotto and makes an ass of himself. Do you think…

Extreme Weight Loss

EXTREME DIET NEWS: A man who once weighed more than half a ton has lost 321 pounds under the care of doctors and hopes to lose 450 pounds more. Patrick Duel, 42, of Valentine, Neb., weighed 1,072 pounds when he was admitted to Sioux Falls, Avera McKennan Hospital eight weeks ago. Subway sandwich shops is looking for a new sponsor and hopes to use Duel whenever he is able to actually fit into one of their shops. GENETICS NEWS: Procrastinating monkeys were turned into workaholics using a gene treatment to block a key brain compound, researchers report. Blocking cells from…

Hand Selected, With Predicate

Do you know the difference between spätlesen and auslesen? How about QmP versus QbA? German wines have been on the rise recently, thanks in large part to the renewed popularity of Riesling. Let’s break down German wine labeling to help you understand. Germany uses a meticulous labeling system that designates the factors used in producing the wine, some of which include region, if sugar was added, and how ripe the grapes are when picked. Wine is broken down into four major categories: table wine (tafelwine), country wine (landwein), quality wine (qualitätswein), and top quality wine (prädikatswein). Tafelwein and Landwein Tafelwein and…

Relaxing

There are so many kids here, all looking hale and hearty, And in a moment of weakness, I thought I’d throw them a party. Okay, got to think of the problems. Would the fuzz come cruising by, maybe, to complain about the noise? Would all the girls be holding hands, or worse, with all the boys? I rather hope so, because a certain amount of Gallic frivolity Always adds a little something to the evening’s jollity. Rolling around in the hay is a pleasure that comes to mind – Boys and girls having the fun that’s so very easy to…

Don’t Disturb the Hidden People

Q: I read about a woman, an elf seer, in Boston, Erla Stefansdottir, who named elves, gnomes, dwarves, angels, light fairies, and “the hidden people” as all belonging to classes of what she called elfin beings. Any of the above named entities, Ms. Stefansdottir said, “can get quite upset if we ruin their houses or go against their wishes and we have to face the consequences. They can put a spell on us.” Do you believe “hidden people” exist under the earth and place spells on those who disturb their dwellings? A: I know little people with some pretty serious…