Thursday, Jan. 10, 42 A.B.


Today I thought I'd try something a little different.  Instead of spoon feeding facts to every single cyber surfer who stumbles into this greasy word journal of mine, I thought I'd just set a few tubs of thoughts and reflections out on this page and let them help themselves.  If everyone goes away as fed up as usual, maybe I'll do it again sometime.

Maybe I'll even put up a sneeze guard.

The Horror, The Horror:  Woke up this morning and made the mistake of looking out my front window.  That's when I saw it: The snowman across the street... lying sprawled on his right side, headless... his torso horribly separated from his bottom... a thin stream of water still running from the belly area across the sidewalk and into the road.  A quick survey of the neighborhood revealed this was hardly an isolated incident.  I immediately called the police - they didn't care!  I called the newspaper - they hung up on me!  Unable to think of anything better to do, I post this warning here:  If YOU are ever tempted to spend a night outside wearing only a hat and a muffler, please - I beg you - don't be a sitting duck for evil fiends.  Keep moving!  KEEP MOVING!  And if you can find it within yourself to bulk your twiggy arms up into branches, so much the better.

The Humor, The Humor:  So it seems Dr. Richard Wiseman of the University of Hertfordshire wanted to find out what the funniest joke of all time was.  Naturally, he set up a web site and asked people to rate 10,000 jokes as part of the process in this Internet-addled age of ours.  Some 100,000 people actually took the time to vote.  Here is the joke they rated #1:

"Sherlock Holmes and Watson go camping and pitch their tent under the stars.  During the night, Holmes wakes his companion and says, 'Watson, look up at the stars and tell me what you deduce.'  Watson says, 'I see millions of stars, and if even a few of those have planets, it's quite likely that there are some planets like Earth, and if there are a few planets like Earth out there, there might also be life.'  Holmes replies, 'Watson, you idiot.  Somebody stole our tent.'"

I dunno.  I think it would be much funnier if Dr. Wiseman was a professor at Cambridge or Oxford....

Fun Fact Of The Day:  Columbus has 25,000 fire hydrants.

What I Intend To Tell The Students When I Talk To Them On Career Day:  The hardest part of being a hermit is having to invent for yourself all the rumors and gossip you need.

Today's Suggestion For A Better World:  Although Columbus has 25,000 hydrants, that's really not very many when you consider there are 1.6 million people living here.  That works out to 1 hydrant for every 64 people.  And some 1000 of those hydrants freeze up and become unusable during the winter!  So, my idea is this: Change the housing code so that every home must have at least one clearly marked hydrant in it somewhere.  This will greatly reduce the odds that the hydrant nearest any given resident is already being used to fight another fire when disaster strikes his or her home.  It should also greatly reduce the chances that the hydrant nearest him or her is frozen, especially if they locate it next to a stove, heating duct, or in the middle of a well-blanketed bed.  Added bonus:  Fire departments wouldn't have to buy such frightfully long hoses!  (Of course we could simply insist that people stop setting fire to their residences, but hey - how pretty does that look against a clear night sky?)

Cheap Date Idea #1:  Go visit the candy department in the grocery store.  Have you taken the time to really get reacquainted with it lately?  My gosh, there are capped test tube replicas full of liquid candy, lava lampesque candy dispensers, candy that looks like dog food and is sold in little dog food bowls, fake sliced bologna that looks EXACTLY like real sliced bologna but is actually bubble gum, powdery candy that comes in little paints cans with paint brushes you can use to paint your tongue, spray candy, suckers inside little plastic domes that you open to get a lick and then close and shake in order to cover the suckers with candy sprinkles - it's breath-taking.  Let others get their thrills watching Harry Potter or Lord of the Rings - I'll take a visit to see the new fur-covered Pez dispensers anytime!  And when you're done with that, stop by the Hallmark store and show your date all the cards you would have sent him or her if you didn't need to save every penny for your insulin shots.

Hans & Sylvia - An Unofficial Update:  Although the Justice Department refuses to confirm it, I have good reason to believe that my imaginary friends Hans and Sylvia have been secretly detained under suspicion of being in my head illegally.  In fact, the Justice Department's refusal to confirm it is one of the best reasons I have for believing that they HAVE been detained.  I've been worried sick about it, too - only the thrill of finally being able to go through Sylvia's purse without the fear of her suddenly coming up behind me has allowed me to keep my nausea in check.  That thrill is starting to fade, though.  NOW what??  Like most imaginary friends, neither had visas, birth certificates, or a photo ID.  And Hans DID once threaten to get himself a crop duster and  use it on the lady at a certain department store if she didn't stop spritzing us with Calvin Klein's latest fragrance.  How long before the thrill of going through HIS purse loses its ability to keep me calm, too??

Cheap Date Idea #2:  Walk slowly down a public street eavesdropping in on all the things others are being taught in the gutters.  Periodically warn your date when he or she is about to distractedly walk into a mailbox.  For a delightful change of pace, warn them after they've already hit it.

CORRECTION:  The other day I claimed to have painted a red cross on my roof in hopes of reducing the odds of the USAF accidentally bombing me.  That's not exactly true.  There is NOT a red cross painted on top of my roof.  It's more of a chartreuse ankh.  I would have come clean from the first, but... well....  The ankh is an Egyptian symbol, and chartreuse sometimes implies homosexuality, and the Egyptians are tossing even 15-year-old boys into prison for homosexuality, and our government continues to give Egypt many millions of dollars every year regardless.  Please forgive me for being a tad paranoid here.  I didn't mean to deceive anyone - I was merely attempting to stay out of prison.  It won't happen again!

My Birdbath, My Barn, Your Snow: When can you stop by and pick it up?

Dead Snowman's Scattered Ashes Carefully Edit Out


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(©Now by DJ Birtcher despite the cloud of powder
surrounding him ever since he dropped someone's cheap plastic compact)


The Bug of the Month is the Grain Beetle.