Monday, November 30, 2020

Tweets of the Month

• The Christmas season inspires so many questions: Was the virgin birth real? Is Jesus the true son of God? Will there ever be peace on Earth? I have a question: How did Charlie Brown ever get that sweater over his huge bulbous head?

• I can't wait for this election to be over. I mean, how much longer do I have to wait 'til I resume my War on Christmas!

• It wasn't until 2001 that all Pennsylvania bars were allowed to serve alcohol on Election Day. Can you imagine having to go through a day like this sober? Such wanton cruelty.

• I know everyone is invested in bigger problems right now, but as a stickler for accuracy isn't it about time we began referring to the House of Representatives as the Room of Representatives?

• Entomologists say there are 17 million flies for every person on Earth. If true, then my manly arrogance over having just slain 3 of them in my office is wholly unjustified. And the thought that I'm still subject to 16,999,997 flies leaves me, well, bug-eyed.

• I’m growing oddly nostalgic for the days when GOP leaders used to say, "Now, hold on. Let's wait to hear what Sarah thinks.”

• Every perfect parent understands the need to impart some daily imperfection lest their children grow up without someone to blame for their inevitable adult flaws.

• Sourpusses on US Supreme Court said to be leaning against scrapping Obamacare. Speculation leads me to believe they never learned about the provision that requires docs mimic Billy Joel when they tell patients they’ve had a heart attack-ack-ack-ack-ack.

• I can't believe I let this anniversary pass without notice. It was just over a year ago my "Eight Days To Amish" blog was named 32nd best blog for Amish readers by an august panel of experts who evidently never even glanced at my blog ... 

• Because of the potential for global religious upheaval, I've been reluctant to reveal this, but if you look closely enough at The Last Supper painting you can see that while Jesus is revealing his betrayal, the apostle John is checking his phone. Maybe he was calculating the tip.

• Fundamentalists declare America's downfall became a foregone conclusion in 1963 when courts allowed the removal of prayer from schools. I contend it happened when Pringles began making White Chocolate/Peppermint-flavored Pringles.

• I figure I'm about 18 months and two advances in remote control technology before I become utterly incapable of being able to power up the TV and find channel 2 before I burst into tears and beg my sneering daughters for assistance.

• This stubborn — and dangerous — GOP refusal to accept election results has surprised many partisans. Not me. Why would so many people who don’t believe in simple science feel any less suspicious about basic math?

• I’m such a literalist I get furious when I'm buying beer and am confronted with the fact that a case of so-called "lite" beer weighs just as much as a case of regular beer.

• Prediction: The only time we'll see Joe Biden resort to all caps tweets is when he wishes a grandchild HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!

• Dinner table conversation starter: "Would you take vax if, while proven 100 percent effective in preventing/curing Covid, it also within 2 months rendered you completely and permanently hairless?”

• If mirrors had souls, you can rest assured they'd be reflective.

• I wonder if they teach asspiring proctological students to be rude and insulting. I mean, ripping folks a new one is an easy, hands-off way to double your business. 

• Realizing a crucial part of my morning routine is a mess of inefficiency. Takes me FOREVER to get dressed. I think the problem is my superstition that it's bad luck if I don't put my socks on last. This is especially troublesome on the days I wear shoes.


Tuesday, November 24, 2020

How NYC-style sex party would go over in Latrobe


(644 words)

My mind was blown when I read New York City cops busted an 80-person sex party at a club called Caligula. Inside it was wall-to-wall sex. Man on man. Woman on women. Mixes. Multiples. Name it.

I don’t know if any of the police were tempted to join in, but I can guarantee if Caligula has a bar cat it was nervous.

As you can surmise, my invitation must have gotten lost in the mail or else today’s story would likely have kicked off with news about things other than minds getting blown.

Eighty people!

I can’t think of 80 people with whom I’d like to party fully clothed.

I have so many questions.

Do people wear name tags and if so, where do they put them?

Are there formal invitations? Do they say — nudge, nudge —  “Come as you are!” I would think composing an artful invitation to a big sex party would be fraught with challenges.

You can’t call it “intimate” if there are going to be 80 folks there, yet the very essence of a sex party promises sweet intimacy itself — that is if your idea of intimacy is screwing someone you just met while some other stranger watches and apologizes for dropping cigarette ashes on your naked ass

And what do you wear to sex party on a chilly November evening? Do you layer up or just put on a trench coat over your Speedo?

Speaking of coats, being the coat check girl at a sex party would be exhausting: “Welcome to Caligula! I’ll take your hat. Now your coat. Now your blazer. Your tie. Your belt. Your shoes …”

Who gets the pretty ones? There are bound to be a few that everyone covets. Is there a player draft like the NFL has each spring?

And how bad would you feel if you went to a sex party with 79 horny people and you couldn’t get laid?

I know. You’d feel like I felt 1981-’85 only instead of 79 horny swingers there were 14,000 of them and instead of New York City it was Athens, Ohio.

But getting laid wasn’t the reason I attended Ohio University so I’m not bitter.

Getting laid and getting drunk was the reason I attended Ohio University. Let’s just say I’m, gee whiz, wistful.

I don’t think you could have a really rockin’ sex party in a town like Latrobe. Everybody already knows everybody. There’s already a lot of time-consuming gossip. Layering sex onto the mix and town would grind to a halt.

“So there I was screwing Mr. Watson — he’s the crossing guard at Billy’s school — when Fred the barber comes barging in like he’s late for his tee time. I said, ‘Wait your damn turn, Fred! I ain’t the Wal-Mart and ain’t no Black Friday door-buster sale!’”

Of course, all the stories have noted how prudent social distancing went straight out the Caligulian window.

I guess some people are determined to go out with a bang. The secondary uproar solidifies my contention that one day soon safe sex will be all safe and no sex.

I wonder what ol’ Doc Fauci would say if you’d give him a hypothetical about attending an orgy where you could only wear one or the other: either a mask or a condom — and you can’t get cute by spending haft the night with the mask over your face and half with it over your penis and vice versa.

Me, I’d skip ‘em both if somedody'd offer me a sturdy pair of galoshes.

What to bring to any party is always tricky. You can’t go wrong with a nice bottle of wine. Some would say a bold cabernet or maybe a crisp, buttery Chardonnay.

Those are fine, but I have a suggestion for what to bring if you want to be well-received if you ever get invited to a neighborhood sex party.


Related …

A binding story on Zumba sex

True room service; sex with the maid

Seeking bedroom deviance from reluctant wife

Quarantine sex: married vs. single

Bonding over spy sex scandals

Thursday, November 19, 2020

Trump ought to concede & move to Latrobe


(858 words)

I’m one of the 80 million or so Americans who thinks every time Trump leaves the White House he steals a towel or two.

Of course, now there is a sizable portion of the Republican Party who think the Democrats stole something more significant than laundry.

This stubborn — and dangerous — refusal to accept the results has surprised many partisans.

Not me.

Why would so many people who don’t believe in simple science feel any less suspicious about basic math?

So today commentators are buzzing with speculation about if he’ll leave the White House.

Of course, he’ll leave. The real question is where will he go to plot his next move, mostly likely one that’ll set the table for a run in ’24. Top-of-the-head prediction: He’ll dump Pence and run with someone else named Trump. Which one? Junior? Ivanka? Melania?

I cannot say. The crystal has gone cloudy.

But he’s bound to jettison Pence. I mean, how much of that punk’s mouthy sass is he expected to take?

Dumping Pence would be good for me because it would give me more time to convince our conspiracy-minded friends that his real name isn’t Pence, it’s Pants, a name he changed to conceal his lascivious nature. For example: “Mike pants whenever he sees Mother in her slippers and bathrobe.”

Many are stating the obvious, that Trump’ll go back to sunny Florida and the posh splendors of Mar-a-lago.

That’s a bad idea because it means sooner or later there’s bound to be a repulsive picture of him without his shirt on and I don’t know how much more the country can take.

Then there’s the overseas option. Some are saying he might seek asylum from prosecution in a foreign country. This intrigues because it’s bound to involve a goofy reality TV show. Personally, I’d skip the Super Bowl to watch him and North Korean despot Kim Jong Un play loser-buys-dinner ping pong.

But I don’t see him fleeing. He’s spoiling for a fight and, besides, he’s going to be issuing so many crafty self-pardons he’ll have license to grab Nancy Pelosi by the hoohah and all she’ll be permitted by law to do is say, “Thank you, Sir! May I have another!”

No, the politically savvy move is to get out among the people. He needs to cement his populist bona fides by living among regular folks who do things like, well, pour cement.

And strategically, he ought to do it in an Electoral College vote-rich battleground state like, say, Pennsylvania.

But he’ll be leaving 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, an address befitting his privilege and ego. What could match that?

How about 4432 State Route 982? 

From his White House bedroom he can arise and see stirring flag-draped views of the Washington Monument, the Lincoln Memorial and other hallmarks of freedom — that is assuming he isn’t instantly mesmerized by the Fox & Friends wall-to-wall gush about his overnight tweets.

What about the latter address?

From there Trump could gaze out the window and bask in a view of … Himself!

By now locals know I’m talking about Trump  moving into Trump House. Painted to resemble an American flag, the two-story for-now unoccupied residence has been a genuine tourist attraction, drawing as many as 1,000 Trump fanatics a day. They come to share their love of all things Trump and pose for pictures with a 20-foot replica Trump.

It’s MAGA Graceland. Trump would love it. 

And he’d love Latrobe, one of the reddest dots on the map. Really, the only opposition he’d encounter here would come from me, my wife and maybe one or two of our foul-smelling hippies. 

We have scenic Laurel Mountain vistas, quality schools for Barron, and not one, but two McDonald’s — one of which is capable if producing the correct order.

On the first try!

And we have Latrobe Country Club. I recall reading somewhere that Trump plays a little golf. Arnold Palmer was born here — and, really, never left.

Of course, the best reason to have Trump move here involves another native son. That’d be the Rev. Fred Rogers.

He’s the polar opposite of Trump in every way.

So, yeah, I love him.

Living here in Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood means you can’t help but absorb some of Fred’s gentle wisdoms.

“But Trump tells it like it is!” supporters say.

Honesty without tact is like brain surgery without anesthesia; the operation can cure, but the complications can kill.

Fred said there are three keys to ultimate success. The first is to be kind. The second is to be kind. The third is to be kind.

It seems so quaint, doesn’t it? Like something the bullies would mock.

So be it. I remain steadfast in my belief that the rhetoric of Rogers will outlast the ALL CAPS tirades of Trump. 

Because Fred stood for decency, fairness and civility. You know, like America used to!

Fred’d object to anyone who felt entitled to grab anyone else by the Henrietta Pussycat.

So, Donald, won’t you be my neighbor?

Because I’d sure prefer that to you being my president.

Related …

Trump in Latrobe! Aunt Millie’s gone nuts!

Trump-lovin’ Tin Lizzy in the news again

The giant Trump that ate Mr, Rogers’ Neighborhood

Who’ll take on Trump & what Cher has to do with it

Trump’s no jackass; he’s under-qualified

Friday, November 13, 2020

The hand shake: Its past, present & future


(582 words)

I’m friends with a guy who used to prepare for party introductions by pulling down his zipper and shoving his right hand out the opening so it would appear he had a fully functioning hand where other men have a penis.

I remember him doing this mostly at Ohio University, the proud Athens, Ohio, institute of higher learning responsible for educating numerous award-winning scholars whose disciplines have done so much to advance humanity.

Bob wasn’t one of them.

Still, I’d choose his company over all the achievers.

He’s just a funny guy.

I wondered how current circumstances regarding COVID precautions would alter his greeting stunt. It wouldn’t be as funny if, say, he had to wriggle his entire arm out the zipper so he could do a Fauci-approved elbow bump.

I wish I didn’t feel obliged to game plan my contact greetings before every simple howdy-doo.

Is this a fist bump situation or would a flying elbow suffice? Or should I just wave from across the room and hope my eyes convey I’m smiling beneath the mask? Or, egads, should I go commando and just shake the guy’s hand.

It is said the first handshake was initiated by Assyrian King Shalmaneser III who is depicted in a 9th century B.C. relief shaking hands with a Babylonian ruler after he’d sold him a used Chrysler.

Kidding! There were no Chryslers 2,900 years ago.

It was a Jeep.

By the 5th century BC,  the Greeks shook hands as a way to signal peace — and to ensure neither person was carrying a knife; a safe guard that continued through Medieval times when knights gave extended hands a vigorous shaking to dislodge any deadly weapons.

My, how times change.

Today the hand is the deadly weapon.

Yes, you can get killed shaking the wrong hand.

It’s a pity because we’re in the golden age of the hand shake. This is most evident in our professional athletes. The celebratory handshake is choreographed and often involves the full body with every joint and limb being summoned to juke, bump or jive.

I remember seeing even the cellar-dweller Pittsburgh Pirates perform a compelling full-team celebration after a Josh Bell homer in an otherwise meaningless July loss to the Cincinnati Reds.

I watched it three or four times. I remember thinking, “If this team ever gets as good at hitting the cut-off man as they are at celebrating a solo homer they might have a shot at finishing over .500.”

I wish the CDC could come out with some thoughtful, well-researched guidelines about handshake etiquette that half the country could mock and ignore while coronavirus indiscriminately kills us all.

Until that happens I think instead of shaking hands I’ll merely shake. 

When introduced I’ll from safe distance shake my whole body like an uncoordinated old white guy trying to dance to hip hop or — and picture this — shake like a guy with Parkinson’s.

But let’s not get ridiculous.

I’m no expert, but I think if we all shake hard enough the virus will drop off the body the way water sloughs off a wet dog.

Then we can squash ‘em as they try to flee to a more sedentary host.

If that proves ineffective, I think I’ll start running around with my hand sticking out my fly like my old friend Bob.

I remember everyone at the party keeping a safe social distance from guys like that.

Related …

How Real Men (like me & Michael Keaton) shake hands

COVID  & warp speed

Thursday, November 5, 2020

My fellow Americans ...


(Note: This was written under the presumption of a Biden victory. If the reverse happens, well, never mind)

(781 words)

You know, what kind of gets to me?

It kind of gets to me that calling me an idiot — libtard — over policy disagreements just isn’t mean enough.

No, my earnest belief that the top ome percent should pay their fair share in taxes means I belong to a secret cabal that preys on children by drinking their virgin blood all for the glory of my Satanic masters.

Oh, yeah, me and Tom Hanks.

It’s just utter nonsense.

I mean, it’s been years since I bumped into Hanks at one of the meetings.

It was late last night and Val and I were watching the mind-numbing razor-thin vote counts in rural Georgian counties where neither of us will ever set foot when we both blurted out the same sentiment at the same time.

“Can you imagine how much he’d have won by if he’d have just even once been a decent human being?”

Imagine …

“My fellow Americans — and I mean every one of you, red and blue — I just want to say I’m sorry. I’m sorry for some of the tweets, the mockery, the incivility and for all those misguided times I seemed to go all buddy-buddy with the white supremacy boys.

“If you give me another chance, I promise I’ll try harder to be a little less divisive. I’ll try to be everyone’s president. I’ll try to be your president. Pinkie promise!”

He wouldn’t have even had to be sincere. Just say something like that and we now know it wouldn’t have been even close.

Trump would be victorious and would be entitled to honestly brag about receiving the most votes in electoral history. He’d have held onto the Senate and expanded GOP seats in the House.

And, you, you Trump supporter you, how would you feel?

You’d be feeling euphoric. You’d feel like dancing a happy jig. And you’d feel like gloating about how guys like me were morbidly morose over the prospect of four more years.

In short, you’d feel like I feel.

And I’m feelin’ pretty good!

See, I don’t really care about the GOP holding onto the Senate, gaining seats in the House or gubernatorial victories in square states out West where they bury all the toxic waste (although I do admit to feeling a little charge anytime I get to type the word “gubernatorial”).

To me it was all about Trump.

You, too, I suspect.

I hate him, hate him for all the reasons you may revel in him. Hated him ever since he mocked that disabled reporter — of course me being a (somewhat) disabled (somewhat) reporter I’m (somewhat) biased.

But know this, my brothers and sisters, I do not hate you — at least not those among you who do not hate women, browns, blacks, Ls, Bs, Gs, Qs, etcs.

Yes, I’m one of those liberals who only hates people who hate. I call it “The Hatred Paradox.”

But as we’ve careened through this most godawful year, one riven with tumult and you mocking me for wearing even a stylish mask, I’ve tried to slice through the bitter din and understand you.

On this mission I have failed. I cannot understand what makes anyone from the party of my proud father support Trump.

The notion gave rise to the nifty line, “The revulsion true Republicans feel at the idea of supporting a man like Trump must be akin to what dying vegetarians feel when they realize they’re about to turn zombie.”

So four years of Trump have bot been without some silver linings.

I may not understand you, but I truly understand we at some point are going to need to understand one another.

I’m friends with and admirers of too many of you to simple dismiss you as a bunch of kooks and bigots. Take for example this one very bright woman who said while there was much she detested about Trump, she was so ardently pro-life her “Catholic guilt” meant she felt compelled to vote for him.

“Besides,” she said, “I can tell Joe Biden has dementia.”

What makes her such a mental health know-it-all?

She’s my neurologist. 

She’s a brain doctor!

It might sound like crazy talk, but I believe we can somehow reconcile our differences. We must.

Because of just at this moment there are 71.6 million Americans like me who are mostly ecstatic that Trump lost. But there are 68 million Americans who are mostly furious that Biden won.

And we’re stuck ‘cause we’re all in this together.

And I don’t mean that in a rah-rah USA! USA! all-in-this-together way.

I mean it like we’re cellmates.

Cellmates in an insane asylum.

Related …

Trump’ in Latrobe & Aunt Milley goes nuts

The giant Trump who ate Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood

Farewell, Sarah, America’s flirt

Trump’s no jackass; he’s under-qualified

Who can help me quit caring so much?

Monday, November 2, 2020

America's last undecided voter ... me (from '16)


If I have the guts to pull it off I’m pretty sure you’ll hear about it, which means I’m pretty sure you won’t.

It’s too bad, too, because I imagine it would be a dandy practical joke.

Like all great practical jokes there’s nothing practical about it. I’d do it because I think it would be funny.

It would involve hours of standing, pained expressions, flop sweat and torrents of relentless public ridicule.

As I’m already a married father, I’ve got most of that down pat.

See, this has been the year of the undecided voter. 

Those of us with the ability to make up our minds -- and apparently that’s 99 percent of us -- have endured two years and $2 billion dollars of obnoxious ads trying to persuade about 1 percent of the electorate to vote for this one or that one.

They say after all that, after the debates, the ballyhooed jobless reports and robo callers, they -- gee whiz -- just can’t up their minds.

I want to be that guy.

Few people understand the news media better than I. That’s not as boastful as it sounds.

Having worked for many of the most high-profile media organizations in the world (and been rejected by the rest), I have a unique grasp on what the media are seeking today.

And did you notice I used the grammatically correct media “are” instead of the commonly incorrect media “is?”

Told yinz guys I knew my shit.

I know that the biggest story of today, bigger than even who wins, is the identity of the undecided voter. Why’d they vote for who they did?

Every news outlet will be camped outside of the polling places all day trying to find these electoral kingmakers.

And I have a plan to ensure national exposure, which I’d then use to obnoxiously promote “The Last Baby Boomer.”

Interested in that kind of publicity? Here’s what you do:

Walk into the voting booth  . . .

And never leave.

Camp there. Stay all day. Make them call the police to throw you out.

The reason I probably won’t do it is because I know all the people at my polling place, am shy about causing a scene, and fear my shenanigans would harm my shameless attempts to get anyone to buy my book.

It’s a pity because for the past eight years our polling place down at the local elementary school has been perfect.

We used to have those proper booths with the levers that pulled the drape shut behind you. The privacy made me feel secure.

Now our voting booths are those little electronic stations that leave voters fully exposed. I spend my whole time glancing over my shoulder in fear that some angry Trumpster is going to see I’m voting the straight Democratic ticket and pound me over the head with his big bag of gold bars Sean Hannity advised him to buy.

But the visibility in this case lends itself perfectly to my scheme.

I’d walk in, nod hello, sign my name and be ushered to the voting station. It would be perfectly nondescript.

Then time would tick by. Ten minutes. Thirty minutes. An hour. Hundreds of other voters will come and go . . . and I’ll still be standing there.

But I wouldn’t be standing there still.

No, it would be performance art of the highest order. I’d pace in a little circle. I’d look pensive. I’d look thoughtful. I’d look more anguished than James Dean in the scene from “Rebel without a Cause” where he falls to pieces screaming, “You’re tearing me apart!”

All of this would alarm the polling workers who would clearly see they’re dealing with an undecided voter. They wouldn’t know what to do so they’d call their supervisors. The media would show up to broadcast live reports of the man inside who can’t make up his mind.

“One official said this middle-aged man has spent six hours at his voting station,” the reporter will say. “Sources say he spent a 30 minutes doing Eenie-Meanie-Minie-Mo before bursting into tears. He’s remains truly undecided.”

I’d be seen praying for guidance and asking aloud questions to both Donald and Joe like they were there floating there above my head. I’d ask the polling workers if it was against procedure to have someone deliver me a pizza.

Interest would be at fever pitch as the seconds ticked down. Every major network would be waiting outside to hear from how I’d voted.

Then with just moments to spare, I’d do what I’m guessing by now every still-undecided voter in America is bound to do to settle this momentous matter.

I’d flip a coin.

It’s Election Day and it’s tearing me apart.

Related . . .