BREA, California – Many of the ideas I get for stories just don’t pan out. The premise may be weak, I can’t squeeze at least 300 words out of it or (worst of all) it’s uninteresting or stupid. The thought occurred to me that if I string together enough of these, I might fill a column. Let’s see.
Things I want to hear on the telly
“What’s that, Lassie? Timmy fell down the old abandoned well again? This time we’re going to leave his stupid ass down there a couple of days. Maybe then he’ll learn to watch where he’s walking.”
Funny body parts
Some parts of the human body are naturally funny. The nose. The big toe. The little finger. Ears. Navel. Butt. To demonstrate:
“He got shot in the leg.” Not funny.
“He got shot in the butt.” Funny.
“He broke his arm.” Not funny.
“He broke his nose.” Funny.
“She stomped his face.” Not funny.
“She stomped his big toe.” Funny.
See what I mean? Other body parts are just sort of funny. Thumbs. Fingernails. Kneecaps. Eyeballs. Still other parts are just about impossible to say funny things about, mostly internal organs such as the pancreas, spleen and kidneys.
Things kids no longer learn about
Change a tire. Send a hand-written letter. Girls don’t learn how to sew. How to write a cheque. Make change without a cash register or calculator telling you how much. Finding the answer in the Encyclopaedia Britannica. Using a phone booth. Hear those clicks from a rotary dial telephone. (Those calls never dropped.) Looking at a printed map to decided how to drive somewhere. The Blue Screen of Death.
Elmer Fudd Disease
Hewwo. I’m intewwupting this pubwication to wequest that all of you weaders contwibute genewously to help contwol a howwible affwiction that affects one in evewy thwee hundwed million Amewicans. The medical name is Fwaccid Wip Syndwome (FLS) but it’s better known as Elmer Fudd Disease. It wuins the wife of evewyone it touches. The cwuelty of many uneducated people and wascally wabbits destwoys the self wespect of its victim. Pwease help. Send your cwedit or debit card numbers and PIN to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Contwibutions are tax-deductible unless you get audited.
Lady Shortspeare was always asking me questions about things I couldn’t possibly answer or explain. Don’t “fat chance” and “slim chance” mean the same thing? Ditto for “burn up” and “burn down”. “Tear up” and “tear down”. “Slow up” and “slow down”. However, “overlook” and “oversee” are opposites. If you drink you can get tight or get loose. Is it a contradiction to say that someone’s ass is butt-ugly? Does expecting the unexpected make the unexpected expected? How do you know when you run out of invisible ink? Is mass transit a bunch of Catholics going to church? How can your nose run and your feet smell? Is there a Salvation Navy? You drive on a parkway and park on a driveway. Why do you have to tell mind readers what your name is? Is it possible for a smartass also to be a dumbass? What about a wiseass? Is there some reason that your toaster has a setting that will reduce bread to elemental carbon? Why does “inflammable” mean the opposite of what it ought to? After all, “incendiary” means not cendiary, doesn’t it? The only information I could offer her was I thought that a conundrum was something the percussionist played in an orchestra.