Archive

Archive for the ‘Humor/Satire’ Category

Congress Temporarily Saves the Incandescent Light Bulb

December 16, 2011 2 comments


Tucked away in the 1,200-page bill that keeps the government funded through the rest of the fiscal year is a teeny, tiny, little provision that denies the Obama administration any of the money that would be necessary for it to enforce new energy efficiency standards that would pretty much eradicate the incandescent light bulb.

Yes, that’s right…for the time being anyway…the old light bulb continues to live on!

For some reason, this has been a huge priority for congressional Republicans- presumably because of the symbolism of it all; playing on the resentment of Americans being forced to use those weird, foreign-looking, squiggly light bulbs by squinty-eyed, bespectacled, nerdy, little, carbon foot-print-measuring, bureaucratic, government weasel-heads.

I’m going with the GOP on this one. You can only judge these things, I think, based on your own experiences. And my one experience with the new fangled light bulbs was not a pretty one. Saw it in the drug store one day and thought, “Oh what the hell, let’s see if these things do as advertised.” So I brought it home, took out my incandescent bulb in my bedroom lamp and screwed in the new one.

The packaging says, “lasts five years!” What a deal, I thought. Yeah, they’re a little expensive but totally worth it for five years, right? Ten minutes after I put that new bulb into the lamp, it popped and died. I was totally outraged. There is a huge difference in my book between five years and ten minutes. Huge. I fished the old incandescent bulb out of the trash can and happily screwed it back in again.

With visible disdain (visible at the time only by my cats), I tossed the failed new fangled bulb into the trash. I felt duped. Violated, even.

Look, I’m as environmentally conscious as the next guy—no—more so. I don’t even own a car. I have the tiniest little carbon footprint of anyone I know. I love the earth and the trees and the grasses and all of God’s creatures. I would even be in favor of the eradication of the incandescent light bulb if it would buy our lovely planet just one more day. But the thing you’re replacing it with- HAS TO WORK.

Otherwise- back off, Mr. Government Bureaucrat Guy. Don’t make me buy a 1960 diesel pick-up truck without a catalytic converter- ‘cause I will mess the earth up. Big time.

Athletes and Religion: Seems to be Working for the Broncos

November 30, 2011 1 comment


Retired NFL quarterback, Kurt Warner, an active, devout and prominent Christian, recently advised Bronco quarterback sensation Tim Tebow to cool it with the religious rhetoric he uses quite publicly. I think this is a dangerous piece of advice that threatens Denver’s football season.

Why would you want to anger God when he has clearly climbed aboard your bandwagon and is actively rooting for you to get to the Super Bowl? Oh, there are lots of athletes who, after scoring a touchdown or making an interception, point their fingers toward the sky and thank God. But unless they play for the Denver Broncos, they are all sadly mistaken. Their particular great play was just coincidence.

As everyone knows, God became a fan of the Denver Broncos earlier in the season- in fact, six weeks ago. I have the press release:

PR Newswire
From: Heaven

Dear Media,

Having watched the young man when he played at the University of Florida, God noticed that Tim Tebow wore eye black referencing a passage from the Gospel of John from the New Testament. While God has never been fond of humans wearing religion on their sleeve, he is actually intrigued with the notion of wearing religion as eye black. Heaven is thusly, herewith announcing that the professional football team called the Denver Broncos, which has chosen Mr. Tebow to lead their offense, is God’s favorite football team for the 2011 season.

Kurt Warner argues that religion and faith in God is something you practice in daily life and that public pronouncements about it in connection with success on the football field alienates some fans and is something better kept in private. Please. When God officially endorses your team, I say you flaunt it.

If you were a political candidate and God came out in favor of you, would you not buy full-page ads in even godless publications like the New York Times? Of course you would.

It was Abraham Lincoln who once uttered the famous phrase: “I hope to have God on my side, but I must have Kentucky.” A fine piece of electoral humor, but seriously misguided. When you pass only 20 times a game and your completion percentage is less than 50%, clearly, God is all that is necessary to go 5-1 in your first six starts.

And if any further proof was necessary, have you checked out the Indianapolis Colts this year? They are 0-11. On their helmets, a horse shoe. That’s right- an advertisement for hooves. I think we know who’s rooting for those guys.

Black Friday: Blood Sport

November 28, 2011 Leave a comment


On one hand, I want people to shop. Consumer spending boosts the economy and helps create jobs. On the other hand, the materialism is just so disturbing on so many levels. On the third hand- who’s to begrudge folks down on their luck looking to find stuff they can actually afford? I am obviously conflicted.

I have a view of a Pentagon City Mall from my apartment balcony. On Thanksgiving morning I noticed tents had been pitched outside the closed doors to said mall. Could these be Black Friday maniacs? So I took a walk and confirmed my suspicions. Some folks had, indeed, chosen to spend their entire Thanksgiving Day waiting for Best Buy to open at midnight. The line kept growing throughout the day. People were festive. I realized this had become some sort of deranged sport.

Because my son visited me for Thanksgiving and as a starving college student, needed a couple pairs of shoes, we braved the throngs and actually went into the even larger Pentagon City Fashion Mall- a gigantic five-story complex about three city blocks wide. I hate shopping so much- on a normal day, much less BLACK FRIDAY. It was every bit the crowded, aggressive experience I imagined. Except I forgot about the tedium and boredom of the long lines, the unpleasantness of surly customers like me. My son, I must admit, is much more mature and patient than I. Then again, he was the one getting the free shoes.

————————————————————————————————————

So now it’s the Cyber Monday after Black Friday and I have just scoured the World Wide Web for interesting, violent shopping stories to validate my intense dislike of crass commercialism.

Found some!

From Yelp.com, two interesting accounts of a Black Friday shopping experience from, apparently, the same Best Buy mob scene at the same California mall. The first one from Chris “Chrispy” B:

About thirty minutes before opening time everyone became one huge mob around the front door. They tried to limit the number of people allowed in at once but the mob just pushed through. My chair got bent in half somehow, still not really sure how. Probably has something to do with my swollen knee.

Apparently, he’d run into Joe the Wizard “K” :

Someone hit me so hard with a chair that he nearly bent it in half. Enjoy your television.

Then there’s the story of 61 year-old, Walter Vance, a pharmacist with a heart condition who collapsed in a West Virginia Target store. Shoppers reportedly stepped over him to get to their sale items.

And my personal favorite: Turns out the woman who pepper-sprayed fellow shoppers at a California Wall Mart in order to clear a path to a crate of X-Box video game players- has turned herself in. But according to police, the moment she walked into the precinct she invoked her 5th amendment right against self-incrimination.

I’m not sure exactly how this conversation went but it could have been something like this:

Pepper-Spraying Shopper: I’m turning myself in.
Cops: What for, lady?
Pepper-Spraying Shopper: I can’t say.

?????????

When Your Favorite NFL Team Sucks

October 31, 2011 Leave a comment


We poor saps in the Nation’s Capital suffered over three decades before we could get a professional baseball team. After a decades-long wait, we now anxiously hope for a professional football team. Until then, though….we have the Redskins.

Many fans of the burgundy and gold could have been forgiven if they thought there might be a shot at an 8-8 season. After their 3-1 start, some foolishly dreamed about making the playoffs. After watching the 23-0 drubbing at the hands of the Buffalo Bills, coupled with the two previous losses that preceded that debacle- it is time to reassess our goals for the season.

Many knowledgeable fans look at the schedule and can’t find more than maybe three additional victories, max. I, for one, have given up on the concept of wins and losses. In all seriousness, I am wondering if they will ever score again. If I took a shot of whiskey for every 1st down they get, I couldn’t even get tipsy.

After recording 4 QB sacks though the entire season, the Bills notched 9 against the Skins Sunday. At this point, I’m even feeling differently about interceptions. I find myself being grateful whenever a Redskin quarterback remains upright, period. And even if it’s to the other team, hey- a completion is a completion. You take your small victories where you can get them.

You do have to admire how the players are taking their team’s collapse though- with complete and utter selfishness. I like the way our newly fabulous tight end, Fred Davis, celebrates late-game, garbage touchdowns against prevent defenses; like he just made a game-winning catch in the Super Bowl. But then again, that was back when we used to score points. We don’t have to worry about that anymore.

And LaRon Landry celebrated after tackling a Buffalo Bills player who had just gotten a first down. Apparently he thoroughly impressed himself with the vicious hit he put on the opponent.

But what about the injuries? Oh, that’s right. I forgot for a moment that the Washington Redskins, curiously enough, are the only team in the NFL to have suffered injuries this season.

You know what? Winning is overrated. When you root for a team this bad, this shallow, this steeped in total incompetence from owner, to coaches to players, one must take a twisted, macabre joy in watching the weekly car accident that is the Washington Redskins. How bad can they get? Can they set a new franchise record for sacks allowed? Can they set new standards for fewest offensive yards? How many consecutive games can they run the ball ten times or less? What more wonders will we behold from the results of the “Shanahan System?”

So near term, what do the Skins work on this week ahead of the 6-1 San Francisco 49ers? I mean besides tackling, pass defense, blocking, running, throwing, attempting field goals without getting them blocked and kick returns that go beyond the 15 year-yard line?

I would work on their celebrations more. There should be complete unit-wide, choreographed strutting and kick-dancing like the Rockettes. After every single tackle, no matter how mundane, no matter how many yards have just been given up, all the Redskins should take LaRon Landry’s lead and put on a friggin’Christmas show after every play.

The offensive players should all work on the Santana Moss football-spin move. This is where after you make a catch, you spin the football on the turf like a top or a gyroscope. This should happen after every play, regardless of its outcome.

And as long as we’re paying that expensive NFL entertainment dollar, I want to see Mike and Kyle Shanahan dressed in pink, polka-dot dresses with bright red heels on to match their lipstick. And Dan Snyder should come out of the owner’s booth schmoozing with his high-fallutin’ celebrity guests and sit on the bench with the team instead- wearing a clown nose and gigantic Bozo the Clown shoes. At the start of every game, Snyder can drive a tiny burgundy and gold clown car to the 50-yard line as player after player emerges from the circus vehicle wearing bright orange wigs.

As long as you’re going to be a laughingstock, dear Redskins, at the very least, make us, you know- laugh.

I-Phones, Non-Candidates and Hank Williams Jr.

October 4, 2011 1 comment


It’s not even Wednesday yet and there’s a new I-phone I won’t be buying, another non-Presidential candidate no one will be voting for and a country music star making headlines whose political opinions no one cares about.

The New I-Phone

Maybe it’s because I recently spent $200 on an I-Phone 4 and Apple announced today it’s now going to be reduced to $99. Maybe it’s because the new I-Phone is 7 times faster at playing games and I use my phone mostly as a…phone. Or maybe because it was touted as the I-Phone 5 and it’s actually the I-Phone 4s.

But, no, I will not be shelling out $300 for this new “thing.” I cannot keep up with all the new “things.” Often, new “things” don’t work all that well. Somebody let me know when the I-Phone 10 comes out.

The Latest Version of “No”

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie had to call a news conference today because the media did not believe him the previous 107 times he said he would not be running for President. So everyone gathered in Trenton this afternoon to hear him say it again and the non-event is going to be leading newscasts all day today.

Note to political pundits desperate to spice up the increasingly bizarre Presidential race- when a politician says over and over and over and over again that he is “NOT READY” to be President, he knows that’s something that could be used in a campaign ad against him and he is definitely not interested in running for President.

Are You Ready for Some Football?

Actually, no. I had absolutely no interest in Monday Night Football this week because who cares about the 0-3 Indianapolis Colts when there are baseball playoffs that actually matter? So, I missed that ESPN dropped Hank Williams Jr.’s opening song because the country music star made a comment recently comparing President Obama to Adolph Hitler.

Now conservative bloggers are reportedly outraged that ESPN is outraged at Williams who seems to be quite outraged about Barack Obama still being in the White House.

Ok. Why do we care again what Hank Williams Jr. thinks about anything?

Let me make this clear. I expect country singers to sing, athletes to play sports, Hollywood actors to act and politicians to make things up. Don’t confuse me by mixing up your roles in our lives. I’m already confused about what I-Phone to buy and what non-candidate not to vote for.

Hallmark’s Job-Loss Sympathy Cards

September 28, 2011 Leave a comment


There is a card for every occasion and so it seems only appropriate Hallmark is tapping into the recession market to offer a little sympathy to those suddenly facing unemployment. I’ve been there.

Some of these cards are fairly amusing.

“Don’t think of it as losing your job….think of it as a time-out between stupid bosses.”

Or: “I just dare somebody to steal my identity now.”

There are somber ones too, though I think the humorous ones would have been nice to get while I was in my own state of panicked limbo just a couple of years ago. This does open a fairly large potential arena for other cards that address all the possible nuances of economic distress people are feeling these days.

There’s also rampant underemployment:

“So sorry about your new job as a Wal-Mart greeter!”

“Now you can have fries to go along with that new, tiny little paycheck!”

There’s the long-term unemployed:

“Don’t worry! Congress is working on the off-setting cuts to pay for your extended unemployment benefits…in between fundraisers and golf outings with lobbyists!”

There’s the couple hundred thousand folks who were ripped off by Bernie Madoff:

“Oooh. Heard about that whole Madoff thing…join the club! Price Club!”

There’s losing your job to outsourcing:

“Sorry your job went overseas! Have you considered moving to suburban Shanghai???”

And two all-purpose recession-oriented sympathy cards dripping with irony:

“Imagine someone trying to make a profit from your unemployment! If you’re reading this- we just did!”

“Look on the bright side, you could be writing Hallmark Greeting cards!”

GOP Debate- Who Had the Best Hair?

September 8, 2011 1 comment


The conventional wisdom is that the fight for the Republican nomination is really down to two: Mitt Romney and Rick Perry. And damn, they have great hair. I can see either one in the pantheon of Presidents.

John Huntsman, who, based on the Washington Post’s instant blogging last night, is the one Republican Democrats would most want to vote for, should not be ignored. He was also nicely quaffed.

Michele Bachmann, however, had a very bad hair night. The hairdo was inexplicably gigantic. Big hair. Huge hair. Helmet-like, even. Most analysts seem to have reached consensus that she failed to stand out from the pack and then fell into the second tier of candidates. I think it is possible her standing has fallen, but she absolutely stood out from the pack. Same week Ed Rollins steps down from his role as her campaign manager she has the rotten luck of having a bad hair night. Coincidence?

Newt Gingrich and Ron Paul both sport the grizzled, veteran, white-hair look. Perhaps coincidentally, they both seem a little grumpy to me. Newt’s greatest applause lines come after his hyperbolic attacks on the given debate moderator of the evening. I like that whole scary, white-haired, angry Uncle thing. It works for him.

Ron Paul, we learned, wants to cut off air conditioning for the troops in Iraq and Afghanistan- but not to be mean. As I understood it, this would make the entire U.S. military intolerably hot, and they would just pack their bags and go home. I could go with that. Leave it to the crazy white-haired Uncle to find a formula for world peace.

I like Herman Cain. I like his 9-9-9 plan. He hardly has any hair, like me, which is another reason I like him. I can’t recall the details of the 9-9-9 plan, but I do like the symmetry of it and I have always been partial to the number 9. And if it fails for some reason, he can always go to the back-up 9-1-1 plan, in which people come rescue you.

And that leaves Rick Santorum who also has a very nice head of very dark hair, though not quite as spectacular as the Romney/Perry combo, which takes the competition hands-down for the impressive thickness and body. And these guys are no spring chickens either.

Tonight, it’s President Obama’s turn in the national spotlight. He’s got a great smile, if unfortunately, not much to use it for these days. But the hair situation with Obama is getting increasingly predictable and, frankly, a little boring. Grey. More and more grey.
I’m with the critics who are urging the President to come out big and bold tonight. Just For Men. And an earring. Blow their socks off, Mr. President.