Monday, December 31, 2007

Bouncing Into a New Year

..."Another year over, a new one just begun."
- John Lennon

2008! Where does the time go anyway? It seems like only yesterday that it was 2007. I trust everyone is having/ has had a good and safe celebration of the New Year. May your hangovers be light!

Here in Boston the New Year festivities are celebrated with "First Night". I have always wondered why they chose that name, First Night. Think about it, nearly all of the celebrating occurs before midnight. Should it not be called "Last Night?" Better yet, what's wrong with "First Morning?" After all, once all those kissers are finished kissing it is morning.

Remember the very first electronic video game, PONG? Did anyone else own the Odyssey game console? For your pleasure and a trip down memory lane, why not play a game or two below. Use your mouse to move the paddle on the right to return the volleys by the computer. The game ends when either you or the computer scores 10 points. (You can get your own by clicking on the "Pyzam" link at the bottom of the image.)

...And to think that when that game was introduced in the early 70s, we thought it was a technological wonder!

What is the definition of a hangover?

The Grapes of Wrath

Here's hoping that the 2008 Roller Coaster ride will be smoother than the one we had in 2007.


Sunday, December 30, 2007

NO News is Good News, Isn't It?

Sherlocking the News

I don't read the newspapers nearly as much as I use to anymore. Suffice it to say, I don't watch a lot of news on television either. It's as if the need to know has been outweighed by I don't want to know.

It's a sign of the times in the world in which we live, that the only news worth reporting is bad news. "Feel-Good" stories are relegated as fillers in newspapers and used to prevent fifteen seconds of 'dead air' time by the broadcast media. Even then, those stories are generally smarmy accounts of an image of the Virgin Mary found on a potato chip by some despondent person.

Today I broke my trend and started scanning the headlines in the Sunday paper. I was not surprised to find a sea of morbidity in varying sizes of bold face fonts.
U.S. Soldier Killed By Roadside Bomb
Man Kills Wife, Children Before Killing Self
Alcohol, Speeding Blamed For 3 Teenage Deaths
Car Bomb Claims 200 in Baghdad Market
6-Year-Old Dead In Gang Crossfire
It was enough for me to consider tossing the newspaper aside. As an after thought I challenged myself to keep reading the headlines to see how many, if any, nice stories I could find. First I turned to the comics to see if a laugh, or in the very least, a smile could lighten my mood.

What do I find instead, but a comic strip titled 'LIO'. That is one strange, sick cartoonist who is responsible for that piece of work. Someone needs to send that person a copy of a dictionary page with the word 'comic' highlighted. Unless I've been misinformed all these years, the word comic is synonymous with funny and laughter.

Besides passing over headlines such as those mentioned above, I was next faced with weeding out all of the political coverage. Can you believe it? There was next to no news left!

Then I found an article about a recent poll held by Parade Magazine in which they asked readers to name the "Most Annoying Celebrity." I was not surprised to see that Rosie O'Donnell came out on top. Do you know how hard it is to find a "flattering" picture of Rosie? I surfed around and finally found one:
Coming in a distant second was Paris Hilton, followed by Ann Coulter, and Heather Mills.

So where on the list are Hillary, Martha Stewart, Donald Trump, Peyton Manning (those stupid over-played commercials), and ________ (fill in the blank) ? The article only mentioned the top four vote-getters.

Ah, then I found a Boston Herald column by Mike Pingree that usually evokes from me a chuckle. His column can also be found on the Internet at Through The Looking Glass. He writes short vignettes from odd news stories from around the world. For example:
So, What Have You Two Been Up To? ... In 2000, a couple in South Wales adopted a 14-year-old boy from Kosovo. He developed a very close relationship with his foster-mom. Very close. He impregnated her when he was 19. The 34-year-old woman married the lad Christmas Eve. When he found out, her shocked ex-husband said he "began to think back to all the times they had spent together on their own."

Why Is Everyone Staring At Me? ... A man was arrested for drunken driving after he was observed getting out of his car in Los Angeles. He was 6-foot-4, 280 pounds, wearing a red lace camisole, purple G-string, a blonde wig and a Santa hat.
I remember his face, but I never knew his name.

Actor and former NCAA wrestling champion, Tab Thacker has died after a long illness from complications due to diabetes. The 45-year-old Thacker appeared in such notable films as City Heat, Wildcats, Police Academy 4, and Police Academy 5.
(Pictured: Tab Thacker with Goldie Hawn in a scene from Wildcats.)

I seem to remember a phrase that was a motto for some newspaper: All the news that's fit to print.

QUESTION: When the hell are you going to print it?


Saturday, December 29, 2007

No Sex if the Micro's Soft

(Anticipating that I'll be up late watching the NE Patriots play the NY Giants in their quest for an undefeated seaon, I culled the following from my e-mail files. I would like to give credit where credit is due, but the e-mail did not include the source.)


Micro was a real-time operator and dedicated multi-user. His broad-band protocol made it easy for him to interface with numerous input/output devices, even if it meant time-sharing.

One evening he arrived home just as the Sun was crashing, and had parked his Motorola 68040 in the main drive (he had missed the 5100 bus that morning), when he noticed an elegant piece of live ware admiring the daisy wheels in his garden. He thought to himself, "She looks user-friendly. I'll see if she'd like an update tonight."

Mini was her name, and she was delightfully engineered with eyes like COBOL and a PR1ME mainframe architecture that set Micro's peripherals networking all over the place.

He browsed over to her casually, admiring the power of her twin, 32-bit floating point processors and inquired "How are you, Honeywell?". "Yes, I am well", she responded, batting her optical fibers engagingly and smoothing her console over her curvilinear functions.

Micro settled for a straight line approximation. "I'm stand-alone tonight", he said, "How about computing a vector to my base address? I'll output a byte to eat, and maybe we could get offset later on."

Mini ran a priority process for 2.6 milliseconds, then transmitted 8 K. "I've been dumped myself recently, and a new page is just what I need to refresh my disks. I'll park my machine cycle in your background and meet you inside." She walked off, leaving Micro admiring her solenoids and thinking, "Wow, what a global variable, I wonder if she'd like my firmware?"

They sat down at the process table to top of form feed of fiche and chips and a bucket of baudot. Mini was in conversation mode and expanded on ambiguous arguments while Micro gave the occasional acknowledgments, although, in reality, he was analyzing the shortest and least critical path to her entry point. He finally settled on the old 'Would you like to-see-my-benchmark routine', but Mini was again one step ahead.

Suddenly she was up and stripping off her parity bits to reveal the full functionality of her operating system software. "Let's get BASIC, you RAM", she said. Micro was loaded by this; his hardware was in danger of overflowing its output buffer, a hang-up that Micro had consulted his analyst about. "Core", was all he could say, as she prepared to log him off.

Micro soon recovered, however, when Mini went down on the DEC and opened her divide files to reveal her data set ready. He accessed his fully packed root device and was just about to start pushing into her CPU stack, when she attempted an escape sequence.

"No, no!", she cried, "You're not shielded!"

"Reset, Baby", he replied, "I've been debugged."

"But I haven't got my current loop enabled, and I can't support child processes", she protested.

"Don't run away", he said, "I'll generate an interrupt."

"No, that's too error prone, and I can't abort because of my design philosophy."

Micro was locked in by this stage, though, and could not be turned off. But Mini soon stopped his thrashing by introducing a voltage spike into his main supply, whereupon he fell over with a head crash and went to sleep.

"Computers!", she thought, as she recompiled herself. "All they ever think of is hex!"


Friday, December 28, 2007

Ran-dumb Stuff

Up Against The Wall

A female CNN journalist heard about a very old man who had been going to the Western Wall to pray twice a day, every day, for a long, long time.

So she went to check it out. She went to the Western Wall and there he was, walking slowly up to the holy site.

She watched him pray and after about 45 minutes, when he turned to leave, using a cane and moving very slowly, she approached him for an interview.

"Pardon me, sir, I'm Rebecca Smith from CNN. What's your name?

"Morris Fishbien," he replied.

"Sir, how long have you been coming to the Western Wall and praying?"

"For about 60 years."

"60 years! That's amazing! What do you pray for?"

"I pray for all the wars and all the hatred to stop."

"I pray for all our children to grow up safely as responsible adults, and to love their fellow man."

"How do you feel after doing this for 60 years?"

"Like I'm talking to a fuckin' wall.

Cowboy and the Genie

A cowboy has spent many days crossing the Texas plains without water. His horse has already died of thirst.

He's crawling through the sand, certain that he has breathed his last breath, when all of a sudden he sees an object sticking out of the sand several yards ahead of him.

He crawls to the object, pulls it out of the sand, and discovers what looks to be an old briefcase.

He opens it and out pops a genie. But this is no ordinary genie.

She is wearing a FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) ID badge and a dull gray dress.

There's a calculator in her pocketbook. She has a pencil tucked behind one ear.

"Well, cowboy," says the genie. "You know how I work, You have three wishes."

He said "I'm not falling for this, "I'm not going to trust a FEMA genie."

"What do you have to lose? You've got no transportation, and it looks like you're a goner anyway!"

The cowboy thinks about this for a minute, and decides that the genie is right.

"OK! I wish I were in a lush oasis with plenty of food and drink."


He finds himself in the most beautiful oasis he has ever seen, and he is surrounded with jugs of wine and platters of delicacies.

"OK, cowpoke, what's your second wish."

"My second wish is that I was rich beyond my wildest dreams."


The cowboy finds himself surrounded by treasure chests filled with rare gold coins and precious gems.

"OK, cowpuncher, you have just one more wish. Better make it a good one!"

After thinking for a few minutes, the cowboy says..."I wish that no matter where I go, beautiful women will want and need me."


He was turned into a tampon.

The moral of the story: If the government offers you anything, there's going to be a string attached.

The Stiff Date

Jeff walks into a bar and sees his friend Paul slumped over the bar. He
walks over and asks Paul what's wrong.

"Well," replies Paul, "You know that beautiful girl at work that I wanted
to ask out, but I got an er&ction every time I saw her?"

"Yes," replies Jeff with a laugh.

"Well," says Paul, straightening up, "I finally worked up the courage to
ask her out, and she agreed."

"That's great!" says Jeff, "When are you going out?"

"I went to meet her this evening," continues Paul, "but I was worried I'd
get an er&ction again. So I got some duct tape and taped "it" to my leg,
so if I did, it wouldn't show".

"Sensible" says Jeff.

"So I get to her door," says Paul, "and I rang her doorbell. She answered
it in the sheerest, sexiest, dress you ever saw."

"And what happened then?"

"I kicked her in the face."


Thursday, December 27, 2007

Senior Moments


Two women met for the first time since graduating from high school. One asked the other, "You were always so organized in school, did you manage to live a well planned life?"

"Yes," said her friend."My first marriage was to a millionaire; my second marriage was to an actor; my third marriage was to a preacher; and now I'm married to an undertaker."

Her friend asked,"What do four marriages have to do with a well planned life?"

"One for the money, two for the show, three to get ready, and four to go."


A 75-year old man went to his doctor's office to get a sperm count. The doctor gave the man a jar and said, "Take this jar home and bring me back a sample tomorrow."

The next day, the 75-year old man reappears at the doctor's office and gives him the jar, which is as clean and empty as on the previous day.

The doctor asks what happened, and the man explains, "Well, doc, it's like this. First I tried with my right hand, but nothing. Then I tried with my left hand, but nothing. Then I asked my wife for help. She tried with her right hand, but nothing. Then her left, but nothing. She even tried with her mouth, first with the teeth in, then with the teeth out, and still nothing. Hell, we even called up the lady next door, and she tried with both hands and her mouth too, but nothing."

The doctor was shocked. "You asked your NEIGHBOR?"

The old man replied, "Yep, but no matter what we tried, we couldn't get the jar open!"



An old man went to the social security office to sign up.

He had stood in the line for a very long time until it was finally his turn. The lady behind the counter ask him for identification. He went to get his wallet out of his back pocket and relized he had left it at home. The lady told him that was alright he could just show her his chest hairs and if they were grey she knew he was old enough for social security.

After everything was done there he went home and told his wife how his day went. He told her that he had forgotten his wallet at home and the lady at the social security office just ask him to pull down the front of his shirt and she could tell if he was old enough.

After listening to his story his wife told him if he had dropped his pants he probably could have gotten disability too.


There was this woman who had bags under her eyes and wanted to get them removed so she could look younger. Thus she went to a plastic surgeon. She tells the doctor I can't get rid of these bags please help me.

The doctor says he is gonna try and new experimental technique on her. He will put a crank in the back of her head and when she sees bags under her eyes she's supposed to crank it and the bags will go away.

So she gets this crank put in her head and leaves. It works and works for a while until one day she cant get rid of these bags under her eyes. She cranks and cranks as hard as she can but they just wont go away. So she goes back to the doctor.

She says to the doctor: "Doctor, this was working for a while, but I can't seem to get rid of these bags under my eyes."

The doctor replies: "Lady those aren't bags... those are your tits!"

All she had to say was, "Now that would explain why I have this goatee."


Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Of Rolexes and the Christmas Spirit

Since those three storms last week in a five-day period, the temperatures have been in the high 30s and low to mid 40s. Although there still remain some mounds of traffic-dirty snow in yards and roadsides, most of it is gone.

As a result we don't need Carmen Electra to help melt the snow. A pity ....

It shouldn't surprise me or bother me, but too many people have no concept of what Christmas is and what it means. (I touched upon that subject in my previous post.)

A man I know, an acquaintance who runs a convenience store, asked me this afternoon what I got for Christmas. I answered with a terse "Some nice practical things." He was persistent and said, "Like what?"

Rather than answer directly I said, "That's not important. I'm more pleased with gifts that I gave to others." I then started rattling off some of the items I gave to my wife, and my daughter and her husband.

He looked at me like I had an extra hole in my head other than the natural ones from nature. Then he said, "Oh, I see. Santa wasn't very good to you. You were disappointed with your gifts."

It was my turn to look at him oddly. "You don't understand, Bill. What gifts I received aren't important. I took great pleasure in watching my family open their gifts. I like seeing their looks of surprise and their smiles. To me that's the most important part of what Christmas is all about."

He shook his head and said, "You are one strange dude." He then held up his wrist and pointed there, "You know what this is?" He didn't afford me the chance to answer. "It's a Rolex."

"Nice." I said to him and then asked, "And what did you give to the missus?"

"What do you care what I gave her? Besides, I don't remember. I gave the kids some extra bucks and had them pick out a few things for her." There was a pregnant pause as another customer came into the store, and bought the paper, a loaf of bread and some cigarettes.

Once again he extended the watch and said, "Do you have any idea how much one of these cost?"

I shook my head and answered, "Not exactly. I know they are expensive though."

He grinned (or was it a sneer?) and said, "I bet this cost more than every gift combined under your tree this year."

I headed for the door and said over my shoulder,"I'm sure it did, Bill. I'm glad you had a good Christmas."

The door closed on his next few words, but I did hear "The best!"

I sat out front for a moment with the engine running and thought to myself, that man falls into that group of poor souls who really don't understand the concept of Christmas. At the least, his understanding and mine are completely different.

A cruel thought entered my mind as I was pulling away.
What if that Rolex he was so proud of ... wasn't genuine? What if it came from the inside of a coat of man standing on a corner somewhere? What if that man whispered to Bill's wife, "Psst, lady. Wanna to buy a watch?"
The cruel thought? I almost hoped that was what happened.


Tuesday, December 25, 2007

In a Song: The True Meaning of Christmas

I think most everyone would agree that Christmas has become so commercialized that for many, its true meaning has been lost. If that wasn't sad enough, we now find ourselves in a "politically correct" environment. We have been forced to become hesitant to wish others a Merry Christmas.

I will not try to go into a lengthy discussion as to what Christmas means to me, because I don't see the point. I won't try to explain the concept of giving without looking to receive something in return. I don't think I could put into words the meaning of Christmas as eloquently as it appears in the lyrics of the song, The Christmas Shoes.

I will confess that tears come to my eyes everytime I hear this song. In fact, the same thing happens when I merely read the following words:

The Christmas Shoes

It was almost Christmas time, there I stood in another line
Tryin' to buy that last gift or two, not really in the Christmas mood
Standing right in front of me was a little boy waiting anxiously
Pacing 'round like little boys do
And in his hands he held a pair of shoes

His clothes were worn and old, he was dirty from head to toe
And when it came his time to pay
I couldn't believe what I heard him say

Sir, I want to buy these shoes for my Mama, please
It's Christmas Eve and these shoes are just her size
Could you hurry, sir, Daddy says there's not much time
You see she's been sick for quite a while
And I know these shoes would make her smile
And I want her to look beautiful if Mama meets Jesus tonight

He counted pennies for what seemed like years
Then the cashier said, "Son, there's not enough here"
He searched his pockets frantically
Then he turned and he looked at me
He said Mama made Christmas good at our house
Though most years she just did without
Tell me Sir, what am I going to do,
Somehow I've got to buy her these Christmas shoes

So I laid the money down, I just had to help him out
I'll never forget the look on his face when he said
Mama's gonna look so great

Sir, I want to buy these shoes for my Mama, please
It's Christmas Eve and these shoes are just her size
Could you hurry, sir, Daddy says there's not much time
You see she's been sick for quite a while
And I know these shoes would make her smile
And I want her to look beautiful if Mama meets Jesus tonight

I knew I'd caught a glimpse of heaven's love
As he thanked me and ran out
I knew that God had sent that little boy
To remind me just what Christmas is all about

Repeat Chorus

If you are unfamiliar with the song or just want to hear it you can visit the CBS site where you can click on links to either watch the music video or to simply just listen to the song. You can also read about the history of the song.

The song was turned into a best-selling novel and later made into a CBS made for TV movie. It is available in DVD (pictured at the left).


Monday, December 24, 2007

Proof Santa Stopped at Your House

How To Tell If Santa Has Been Naughty or Nice.

Soot has been tracked all over your wife's brand new $1500 carpet.

You leave him milk and cookies ... and he eats the last drumstick and drinks your last beer!

The refrigerator door was left open.

The lock to the liquor cabinet has been picked.

The living room smells like a brewery.

Your teenage daughter's underwear drawer has been rifled.

One of your Playboy magazines (open to the centerfold) is on the bathroom floor in front of the toilet.

The toilet wasn't flushed and the seat was left in the up position.

Outlined in yellow, "Ho-Ho-Ho" was traced into the snow in your front yard.

Your mother-in-law comes out of the guest bedroom with a silly smile and muttering "He doesn't call ... He doesn't write ..."

Half of the bricks of your chimney are scattered in your back yard.

A pay-for-view XXX adult movie shows up on your cable bill for 3:30 AM on 12/25.

For 12/25 a $75 phone call on your next bill is to one of those 1-900 Phone Sex numbers.

In the spring you find that your clogged gutters and downspouts are the result of reindeer droppings.

The following September your unwed teenage daughter names her son Nicholas.


Sunday, December 23, 2007

Cletis Clyde's 12 Days of Christmas

What a difference a day makes! As noted in yesterday's post, I had to run the gauntlet of many other shoppers to gather some booty for Christmas presents! I left the house at 12:30 and was home by 3:30 - mission accomplished. The Ebineezer Grinch persona that had come over me has evaporated.

I received a communiqué from an old friend of this site, Cletus Clyde. It appears that this good old boy from the backwoods of West Virginia is mighty confused about The Twelve Days of Christmas. I'll just sit back now and turn this post over to Clyde.
Much obliged there, Hale. First off, where do folks get off saying they's twelve days of Christmas anyhow? I got me one them fancy calendars with pitchers by some "Courier with Hives" right-cheer in front of me. They's only ONE day in them there little boxes that says Christmas. But I ain't gonna dwell on that coz it's probly jest some ignorant Yankee what can't count none too good.
Anyways, I decided I wuz gonna send those twelve gifts to that purty gal over yonder in Hog Holler by the name of Hazel Butts fer Christmas. So far the only way I been able to get in her pants is when they's hangin' on the clothes line in her back yard. Anyways, now that I'm fixin' to go shoppin' fer them items what's bein' sung about in that song, I can't help but wonderin' whose hooch that song writer wuz a-drinkin' from.

Accordian to the very first verse I gotta find a partridge in a pear tree. Now jest a cotton-pickin' minute - what would anyone want with Danny Bonaducci in pear tree?

It took some doin' and lookin' high and low, but I finally found the Two Turtle Gloves. It come in a purty box, so I reckon it must be a lady-like gift.

I'm a little worried about those three french Hens. Well you see, chickens don't have lips. I 'm not too sure I want to be kissin' no chickens jest to find me three that'll slip me the tongue.

Those danged four calling birds won't stay offin' the phone. They's eatin' up my minutes and runnin' up a big bill. Lawd a'mighty only knows where they's been a-callin' to.

Gettin' those five gold rings was easy. Only thing is, I had buy a dozen golden rings from Uncle Fred's Donut and Bait Shop. Golden rings is what he calls his honey-glaze donuts coz them are what he sells the most of, 'ceptin' maybe his night crawlers of course. I done ate seven of them so's I'll be left with jest five. I only had to take one of my shoes off to count that far.

I been keepin' my fingers crossed hopin' that Preacher John don't pay us a visit with those six geese copulatin' out there in the yard. Bust my britches, but I thought fer sure layin' meant that they's gonna be layin' some eggs. I been hankerin' some scrambled eggs too.

What a pain in the ass those seven swans swimming are. I can't rightly get into the bath tub for takin' me a bath. But I guess I can live it though. It ain't that time of the month fer a bath anyway.

I don't reckon any y'all out there knows where I might find me a cow what's got eight udders? I gotta find me somethin' to occupy them eight maids milkin'. They's been a-pokin' and a-pullin' and a-yankin' at me every time I try to sneak off to take a squirt.

I had to drive all the way into town to find those nine ladies dancin'. You know, I been speculatin' that I might keep them. Course, I'm gonna have to put in one them poles for them. Hazel might not be too pleased iffin I was to show up with exotic dancers a-prancin' aound all nekkid and all.

I ain't none too sure either iffin Hazel gonna be keen on me bringin' ten Tracy Lords leapin' all over the place. I can only hope she ain't seen none of them porno-traffic films which that Lords gal used to star in doin' all them carnival knowledge things. I knows, coz I went to see one of her movies a while back. You know fer sure when you're watchin' one of them porno-traffic films coz all the men folk in the movie house got there motors runnin' hard and they ain't nary a one lettin' go of their gear shifts.

I don't think eleven Roddy Pipers is such a good gift neither. That sure is one big man who's been usin' them stereo drugs. He might take a shine to Hazel. I got no chance if he was to challenge me to wrassle fer Hazel's intentions. I think it would be better to get eleven Piper Lauries. Yes sir, that's what I'll get. Anyways she's an old lady now and if there's a challenge, I know I can out-wrassle her!

Tarnation! Them twelve drummers are drivin' me nuts. I was brung up always thinkin' that bugs have six legs. Damn, iffin that Ringo beetle only got two! It keeps singin' some sad song like he's lonely. Iffin he thinks he'll get by with a little help from his friends, I got news fer him. Jest wait 'til he finds out he's gonna be gettin' a lot of hell from the neighbors what bein' kept awake all night with him banging on those drums of his all night.
Well Hale, there you have it. Don't you think if I was to give those gifts to Hazel she jest might see what a generous man I am and give me a chance to get together with her?
Well Cletus, what can I say? You sure know how to please a woman! I'm sure my readers will agree.


Saturday, December 22, 2007

Is Christmas Really Merry?

I have come to the conclusion that I might be evolving into a cross between the Grinch and Scrooge.

I don't wish to ruin any one's Christmas, ala the Grinch. I'm not walking around espousing "Bah Humbug" like old Ebeneezer. Christmas has just become a grind!

The spirit is there. The disposable funds are adequate. The domestic scene is fine. Everyone is healthy. I'm not depressed. So just what is my major malfunction?

I have put a serious dent, well a fair dent, er maybe I just scratched the surface, okay I haven't gotten much Christmas shopping done at all! I haven't been putting off shopping. It's certainly not for lack of trying. It's not because I have no idea of what to buy - I don't, but that's the normal situation every year.

Do you suppose it has something to do with the fact that we have been hit with three winter storms in less than a week? Yes, that's been a factor. In and of itself, the weather is the cause and not the effect. On my job I get paid on a per client basis. If for any reason, other than at the behest of the client, I don't provide service in a given week, I don't get paid. Ah, but there's the rub - "in a given week."

Whenever possible I am expected to make up any services not provided on said scheduled day within that calendar week. In other words, I have had to work later at night some days and on the weekends. Two weekends in a row, earmarked for my Christmas shopping have become work days. More than half of the individual days have turned into late working nights.

We haven't received any where near record amounts of fallen snow. The problem has been the timing and the nature of the storms. The first storm produced little but manageable snow which froze solid overnight. With ice on the streets, driveways and sidewalks the next storm dumped a foot of the white stuff on top of that. We had just managed to dig out from that (the streets were still a mess)when a weekend storm dropped another six inches on us.

Fulfilling my regular work load and the aforementioned make-ups have been an arduous trial and a taxing strain on my body and my plans. It's been one thing working longer hours and on the weekends, but it's been torture fighting the heavy traffic and trying to find and praying for parking spaces.

As I sit here comitting these lines to screen just before midnight on Saturday 12/22, I am faced with the burden of Christmas shopping tomorrow. Don't the weather Gods realize that wintertime Sundays are supposed to be reserved for relaxing and watching football?

I didn't intend for this post to turn into a weather rant, or to go on about my holiday travails, but I still think I'm about to turn into an amalgam of the Grinch and Scrooge.

This has been Ebeneezer Grinch wishing you a Merry aw, Bah! Humbug! Christmas.


The X-Files X-Mas Case

The X-FILES Christmas Case

(author unknown)

"We're too late! It's already been here."

"Mulder, I hope you know what you're doing."

"Look, Scully, just like the other homes: Douglas fir, truncated, mounted, transformed into a shrine; halls decked with boughs of holly; stockings hung by the chimney, with care."

"You really think someone's been here?"

"Someone or some THING."

"Mulder, over here - it's a fruitcake."

"Don't touch it! Those things can be lethal."

"It's O.K. There's a note attached: 'Gonna find out who's naughty and nice.'"

"It's judging them, Scully. It's making a list."

..."Who? What are you talking about?"

"Ancient mythology tells of an obese humanoid entity who could travel at great speed in a craft powered by antlered servants. Once each year, near the winter solstice, this creature is said to descend from the heavens to reward its followers and punish disbelievers with jagged chunks of anthracite."

"But that's legend, Mulder -- a story told by parents to frighten children. Surely you don't believe it?"

"Something was here tonight, Scully. Check out the bite marks on this gingerbread man. Whatever tore through this plate of cookies was massive -- and in a hurry."

"It left crumbs everywhere. And look, Mulder, this milk glass has been completely drained."

"It gorged itself, Scully. It fed without remorse."

"But why would they leave it milk and cookies?"

"Appeasement. Tonight is the Eve, and nothing can stop its wilding."

"But if this thing does exist, how did it get in? The doors and windows were locked. There's no sign of forced entry."

"Unless I miss my guess, it came through the fireplace."

"Wait a minute, Mulder. If you're saying some huge creature landed on the roof and came down this chimney, you're crazy. The flue is barely six inches wide. Nothing could get down there."

"But what if it could alter its shape, move in all directions at once?"

"You mean, like a bowl full of jelly?"

"Exactly. Scully, I've never told anyone this, but when I was a child my home was visited. I saw the creature. It had long white strips of fur surrounding its ruddy, misshapen head. Its bloated torso was red and white. I'll never forget the horror. I turned away, and when I looked back it had somehow taken on the facial features of my father."


"I know what I saw. And that night it read my mind. It brought me a Mr. Potato Head, Scully. IT KNEW THAT I WANTED A MR. POTATO HEAD!"

"I'm sorry, Mulder, but you're asking me to disregard the laws of physics. You want me to believe in some supernatural being who soars across the skies and brings gifts to good little girls and boys. Listen to what you're saying. Do you understand the repercussions? If this gets out, they'll close the X-files."

"Scully, listen to me: It knows when you're sleeping. It knows when you're awake."

"But we have no proof."

"Last year, on this exact date, SETI radio telescopes detected bogeys in the airspace over twenty-seven states. The White House ordered a Condition Red."

"But that was a meteor shower."

"Officially. Two days ago, eight prized Scandinavian reindeer vanished from the National Zoo, in Washington, D.C. Nobody - not even the zookeeper - was told about it. The government doesn't want people to know about Project Kringle. They fear that if this thing is proved to exist the public will stop spending half its annual income in a holiday shopping frenzy. Retail markets will collapse. Scully, they cannot let the world believe this creature lives. There's too much at stake. They'll do whatever it takes to insure another silent night."

"Mulder, I --"

"Sh-h-h. Do you hear what I hear?"

"On the roof. It sounds like . . . a clatter."

"The truth is up there. Let's see what's the matter."

Like the X-Files spoof above? It was not my own creation, but I did write my own original parody I think you'll like. It is titled The X-Mas Files. Check it out.


Friday, December 21, 2007

Here Comes Santa

Here Comes Santa Claus

One evening before Christmas after a long day in the toy shop, Santa Claus was enjoying a soothing hot shower. Because he was very strict about remaining faithful to his wife, he occasionally felt the need to seek self-release.

That night was one of those occasions. So it was he succumbed to the urge to exercise his right wrist. Just as he reached a climax, there was a sudden flash of light. At the window he saw a photographer ready to take another picture just as his "Santa-seed" was flying through the air.

Quicky covering himself Santa said, "Hold on a minute, you can't print that! You'll destroy my reputation to all the kids who look up to me."

"This is my winning lottery ticket," said the photographer. "I'll be financially secure for life."

So Santa offered to buy the camera. After lots of negotiation, they eventually arrived at a price of two million dollars.

Santa then dried himself off, dressed, and headed off to the house with his new camera in hand. He met his wife at the door, who spotted the camera. "That looks like a really good camera," she said. "How much did it cost you?"

"Two million dollars," Santa said to her.

"Two million dollars!" said the Mrs. Claus. "They must have seen you coming."


Thursday, December 20, 2007

Who's Keeping Score?

We now have received 4 more inches of snow than we got the entire winter last year. Sadly, as the calendar goes, it's not yet officially winter. Then again, who's counting? Who's keeping score?

I don't know about you, but I don't particularly like it when Merry Christmas is shortened to Merry Xmas as in the following image:
For the record, I have used that short cut. Then again having said that, when I see it in print it bothers me.

Instead of the "X" denoting Christmas, I feel it should mean something else. Maybe you could say Merry X-mas to someone recently divorced. (Merry Ex-mas, Bill!)

Curiously, you could also use it congratulate a woman who just got married. (Merry Ex-miss, or Merry Ex-ms.) Two meanings works for aloha.

Since keeping score was mentioned above, I found the following generator while surfing around. If you are a fan of the game SCRABBLE you might want to see what your name will score (or not).

Pholph's Scrabble Generator

My Scrabble© Score is: 23.
What is your score? Get it here.
Maybe I should have chosen ZYZZYVA as my Blog name.

Jacko To Star In "Zombie Thriller: the Movie"

Scheduled to be released on Christmas Day, fans of Michael Jackson are sure to wait in long lines to see him starring in the latest Zombie flick.

A spokesperson representing the production studio said that the film came in well under budget. He cited in particular that expenses for the make-up department were below the original estimates. It turned out that Jackson needed no make-up. "He's a natural," said the spokesperson.

The money saved on make-up was offset by additional expenses in the prop department. Several special nose prostheses were created for Jackson to wear around the set when he was off-camera. The cost of these items were defrayed by Jackson's personal health insurance. As part of his contractual arrangements, the studio did have to cover a small co-payment.

Extra security had been added during production of the film. Studio executives claimed that extra safety measures were taken to prevent Jackson's fans from trying to gain access to the set during filming.

A crew member of the production company, who asked to remain anonymous, had quite a different story regarding the beefed up security. He said it had nothing to with the star's fans.

According to that source, Jackson filed complaints that he was being stalked and feared for his life. There was an arrest of a strange man who was charged with trespassing. The suspect was released after questioning on his own recognizance and was ordered to stay away from Jackson and the set.

The man, who identified himself as Hannibal Lechter, denied the charges that he was stalking Jackson. According to the arresting officer the man said in response to the interrogation, "I only eat fresh meat - not carrion."


Wednesday, December 19, 2007

You're Having a Bad Day When...

You know you're having a bad day when your drivers license photo looks like you.

You know you're having a bad day when a "Wanted" picture in the post office resembles you.

You know you're having a bad day when an old flame doesn't recognize you - even when you identify yourself.

You know you're having a bad day when an old flame you don't want to recognize you - does.

You know you're having a bad day when you discover that your car door won't unlock because you're trying to get into the wrong vehicle.

You know you're having a bad day when you arrive at a party and your host or hostess is wearing the same outfit as you.

You know you're having a bad day when you exchange gifts with someone and both of you bought the same cheap bargain store item.

You know you're having a bad day when you make a derogatory remark to a checkout clerk about a certain ethnic group only to discover too late that one of them had just got in line behind you.

You know you're having a bad day when you lock your keys in your car and discover that the wallet in which you keep the spare key is inside the car on the front seat.

You know you're having a bad day when the girl you've been hitting on is engaged to the bouncer.

Yes, I've had all of those things happen to me at one time or another. (I'm sure there are many more I can't recall now.) Fortunately, they didn't occur on the same day!

You know you're having a good day if none of the above ever happened to you.

Hypothetically, would someone be having a bad day if for Christmas:

They gave Linda Blair an exorcise bike?

Helen Keller a corduroy jacket because they thought it was her favorite color?

Michael Jackson a complete set of "Zombie" DVDs?
Just wondering...