Bad News

I saw a great headline on CNN a couple of days ago:

Michael Vick arraigned on Federal Convection
Does this mean that he's going to cook for his crime? Or that they're just going to grill him about it?

A few minutes later, there was another good CNN headline:

Univ. of Wisconsin Resumes Classes when Suspicious Man Not Found
I had to wonder: Is this a daily occurrence there? Does the school have a comprehensive safety plan depending on all things that don't happen?

I can imagine other, similarly gripping news stories, like:
  • Woman Eats Rest of Dinner when Rat Not Detected in Pasta Sauce
  • New York City Returns to Work after Sewers Finish Not Exploding
  • War Ends when Weapons of Mass Destruction Not Detected

Maybe the headline writers have just been watching too much What's News.


Little Jokes

Is moldy cheese whey too old?

Did you hear about the obstetrician that had a midwife crisis?

Dirty joke:
Did you hear about the ditch digger that told his boss to take this job and shovel it?
(His boss then axed him).


LIttle Jokes: I Wonder

Does God offer prophet sharing?

Is Noah considered an arketype?

Is it called religion because the first attempt, 'ligion', didn't work out so well?


Wee Joke

I was thinking about Scotland today, where I spent a year when I was in college.

It's a beautiful country, but very whisky. A man could get kilt there.


When I am King: Queasy Does It

When I am King...

Everyone will experience the wonderful feeling of regular puking.

Throwing up has to be one of the worst experiences that we have in our lives. Unless you count waiting in line at the DMV or dinner on a crowded night at Chucky Cheese.

But the moments just after the heaves stop are, conversely, some of the best times in life. It's a feeling of total euphoria that we wish could go on forever, but sadly lasts only until the next wave hits.

How good would our lives be if we could have that feeling any time we wanted?

When I am King, I will get my scientists working on a drug that simulates this feeling. An early version is available already, under the name “Ipecac,” but it has the minor downside that you actually have to puke first. Our new drug, currently being test-marketed with the name “Toss Up,” will skip that initial step and proceed straight to the euphoria. The only thing missing will be the cool, refreshing feel of the toilet bowl on your forehead. Feel free to supply that part yourself.

This must be the feeling that people imagine when they picture the After Life. Right outside the Pearly Gates is a big toilet. You perform your final heave and then pass into the promised land, retaining that magical feeling for the rest of time. No wonder it's called 'Heaven'.


Little Jokes: September 9, 2007

What do you call it when old trousers shred at the ends?

Is a sign for a fork in the road a sign of the tines?

What do you call someone that sounds more attractive than they look?

When retirees move to a vacation community, is it their last resort?


When I am King: Making Sense

When I am King...

Our senses will be bombarded with terrible smells, tastes, and sounds.

Our lives hold meaning only in selfish comparison with others. Am I happy? I don't know ... until I look at the guy next to me yelling into his phone, or the woman across from me sobbing out a tale about a pedicure gone wrong. Then I realize that, while I may not know whether I'm actually 'happy', I know for a fact that I'm happier than these two.

I used to work at a company that was located next to a plastics factory. Every afternoon I would return to my car, start it up, and then notice an overpowering smell of burning rubber. My first thought was always that something terrible was wrong with my car, something requiring an unaffordable repair. It wasn't a “new car" smell, but rather a “need a new car” smell. Then I would remember about the factory next door producing the odor and I would feel great relief that, once more, I had narrowly escaped certain defeat and my car would live to drive another day.

My car was neither worse nor better through this regular routine, but I felt much better about it through the comparison. Every single day.

Similarly, I enjoy hearing screaming kids on the plane - as long as they're not my screaming kids. It's not that I actually like the sound – I'd rather stick the airline pretzels in my ears and tamp them in with my drink's swizzle stick. But I do like knowing that it's not my kids screaming and that I don't have to do anything about this unsolvable situation.

Of course, people on the flight that don't have young children probably just hate it because they don't have a comparison point. For them, I'd suggest the pretzels-in-the-ear trick; it doesn't feel good, but it sure takes your mind off the screaming.

These comparisons occur intermittently in life, giving us reassurance that everything's OK, because it's not as bad as it could be:
  • You happen to smell the milk before taking a big gulp and realize that it shouldn't smell like vomit. You may feel nauseous from the smell, but you feel a lot better knowing that you didn't drink it.
  • You narrowly avoid getting into a major accident on the highway. You are no safer afterwards than you were before, but you feel much better than you did before accident didn't occur. Besides, that adrenaline is some kinda high, isn't it?
  • You wonder, every time you pass by a power outlet, what it would feel like to stick your tongue into the socket. It would hurt a lot - believe me. But you don't do it. And just knowing that you once again avoided this power trip gives you great comfort.

When I am King, I will create a system of nationwide sensory output devices that will flood our senses with terrible things: screams, odors, bad folk music – anything that causes discomfort. Through this constant reminder that things are probably better than they could be, we will all be a happier people.