Category Archives: Humor

The Suite Beast

There dwells a beast in the cheapest suite
at the local Motel 8,
where many a man and working girl
have met with grisly fate –
they say you get what you pay for!

This post was prompted by this week’s Trifextra writing challenge.

On second thought…

Here’s a sketched concept of what an advertisement for this blog would look like:


This post was prompted by today’s Daily Post prompt.

Just Leave Me a Clone! part one: Rob is the New Rob

I knew I was in the big time when he took his first breath. Continue reading Just Leave Me a Clone! part one: Rob is the New Rob

Trifextra 89: A Case of Mistaken Identity

This week’s Trifextra challenge awards one lucky winner if they get at least 99 entries. There’s no better time than today to try your hand at a 33-word response!

A Case of Mistaken Identity:

I came to and he was staring

into the soul of me.

I said, “Who are you good sir?”

His response: “the Stones told my story.”

“Pleased to meet you, Jumping Jack Flash.”

Does the Internet really need to be governed?

It’s just a disgusting proposition; I told myself I would stop asking “really?” Continue reading Does the Internet really need to be governed?

Could I really be the devil’s minion?

Before I answer, a caveat:

I had a lengthy response started for this week’s What If? Writing Challenge prompt. I finally had to admit to myself that I was writing a piece of such length that nobody wanted to read it as a challenge response. It looks like it may aspire to novel-length. That being said, I decided to rise to the challenge again with a different piece, and hopefully nobody will be disappointed. If the other project pans out, I’ll release it in chunks over the Halloween season, as time and finished work permits.

Mayor Hall and Lucifer
I’m still working up the nerve to grow the beard, but I’m seriously considering the monacle. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Devil came up to Bismarck, and was looking for a soul to steal. He did this from time to time; after all, people weren’t always willing to deal. He liked to keep the old chutzpah in shape, practice the skills he had honed millennia earlier when it seemed like every day presented a new opportunity and he always tried so hard to do top-notch work.

In other words, he wanted to be artistic about it.

Not surprisingly, he flowed as smoke through the holes of a manhole cover and coalesced outside of a Starbucks on a brisk autumn day when the cloud cover was so thick it muted the light to a light gray. The wind slapped his face, draining the excess warmth instantly, cooling the hot red of his skin down to something less noticeable.

And yeah, he could go for coffee.

He ordered his java black with a shot of classic syrup and took it to the corner of the shop, accosting a writer who was sitting quietly, typing away at a laptop and sipping voraciously on a skinny caramel macchiato. I had surprised myself by starting a novel to respond to a writing prompt, and so I was somewhat displeased when the Devil roused me from my groove with a challenge.

He saw the look on my face and smiled broadly. “Boy, you’re on a hot streak, aren’t you?” I just glared back. How can you not know the Devil when you see him, am I right? “I bet you didn’t know it, but I’m a writer too. I wrote the history of independence, and I’m willing to work with you.”

The keyboard of the Malling-Hansen writing bal...
(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

He bet me a golden typewriter that he could finish a novel before me. I wasn’t sure what I could do with a typewriter made of gold; first of all, where would I get the ribbons? Or does it take cartridges? But I found it tough to turn down a writing challenge, so I accepted. Besides, I was curious if he had real fire or whether he was blowing smoke.

He sat down and pulled the lid off the golden typewriter. “Let’s get this show on the road, shall we?” He loaded his first sheet of paper, and began to type. Faster and faster his fingers went, until they turned red-hot and shot fire and sparks from the tips. Page after page flew seemingly of their own accord out of the typewriter, until nearly an entire ream had been consumed and sat neatly stacked on the table. He looked at me expectantly.

“That’s impressive,” I said. “You realize I can’t compete with that.”

The Devil grinned.
“I’d think much less of you if you tried, but if you’d like you can retrieve your soul.
Because I like you, I created this challenge but I left a little loophole.
If you give me a single day of pure evil you just might make me smile;
if you do that you can have your soul, and we’ll just call this a trial.”

Intrigued by the idea of a day without consequences, I began to think of all the interesting things you could do. Find a way to get rich, get rid of all your enemies, or just have fun. But I realized that evil isn’t fun, I don’t have any enemies worth paying attention to, and if I get rich off of evil – consequences or no – it just feels like cheating. Still, I told him I’d think about it. I packed up my laptop and left, not feeling much different for the loss of my soul.

I haven’t had time to plan out my day of evil since, because I am red-hot on the trail of that novel. As soon as I finish it and get it sent out to some agents, I’ll have to look into what I can do to try to get my soul back, if time allows.

After all, life doesn’t begin until forty, and I’ve still got four years till then.

This post was crafted for this week’s What If? Writing Challenge. Head on over and take a shot at it – if you dare!


Was I – ironically – really conceived in music?

So this is hilarious.

en: Primary auditory cortex(red circle). from ...
en: Primary auditory cortex(red circle). from Medial geniculate nucleus to Primary auditory cortex (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

If you read yesterday’s post about the possible drawbacks of the oversaturation of society with popular music, that fast food of the auditory cortex, then you understand the irony of today’s discussion on the possible songs that my parents were getting it on to (to which my parents were getting it on?) when I was conceived.

Stay with me. My blog buddy Andra over at The Accidental Cootchie Mama posted about the same thing and got me wondering about how mine would go. There’s this site: where you select your birthdate using a couple of drop-downs, and then it tells you what the top five billboard songs were during the week you were conceived.

This isn’t a perfect system, of course; not everyone was carried to a thirty-eight- or forty-week term, and so I’m guessing they just turned the clock back about nine months and retrieved the billboard stats from the calculated week. Still, it’s a fun little window into what was playing during the general time when we were first discovered. Here are my songs:

Rod Stewart: Tonight’s the Night (Gonna Be Alright) – One of two songs I definitely remember from the selection. It’s a catchy tune, and for that reason I get why it’s popular, but the video? Eek. First of all, he looks sillier than David Lee Roth in his best days. Second of all, now that I understand what he’s singing – I mean the words – it’s changed the experience of the song. I beg not to see and hear that simultaneously ever again.

The Detroit Spinners: Rubberband Man – right time, right place. . . right groove? It’s got bass, piano, and horns. The triple threat of sexy music instrumentation, right? I could believe that I was conceived to something that only reminds me of Superfly; it’s like being born in the manger next door to Jesus.

The Bee Gees: Love So Right – I’m not so sure about this one; I’m thinking that back then I’d have had better luck staying awake during sex if I was on Quaaludes. Just saying.

The Captain and Tenille: Muskrat Love – Now that this song reminds me of Henry Kissinger, I don’t want to think about anyone getting dirty to it.

Gordon Lightfoot: The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald – Please say it ain’t so, Gordon. Have you ever felt like you were reading the New York Times, only the sentences all rhymed, the story was set to music and sung in a flat Canadian drawl? Yeah. And so I get all the way through this song and I look at the clock as I always do, marveling that it only took six and a half minutes to get through it.

That sounds about right.

So personally, my vote is for Rod Stewart or the Detroit Spinners, with a strong lean toward the Spinners; because I figure either it was all business or it was fun, and if you’re on the business end you’re gonna do it right (since tonight’s the night). Then again, I’d be more likely to believe it was Billy Joel setting the mood.

So what’s your results? Write them up and feel free to drop a link in the comments or link to this page to generate a pingback.

Can I really laugh at anything?

what? Do i look funny or something?
what? Do i look funny or something? (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I like to think that I have a fairly broad sense of humor, although I will admit readily that I don’t really appreciate lower humor as much as others. One time, back when I worked at Eckroth Music, I was discussing podcasts with a Speed-Dee driver; he suggested that I listen to the Kevin Smith podcast. I listened to two episodes, and was thoroughly unimpressed with the brand of humor presented, not to mention the amount of profanity involved. Not my cuppa joe.

Still, “funny” is a matter of opinion. There are things that some people don’t think are funny that other people do. I can live with that. The things that I seriously consider to be unfunny usually involve some kind of hardship on my part. The joke might not be at my expense, but if I’ve had a hard time with something, I certainly do not find it funny. Like when people make jokes about how long our work days are at my job, I don’t think that’s funny. Sometimes I think it’s similar to how holocaust survivors might have felt about the holocaust.

So can anything be funny? I don’t think so; and if I don’t find something funny, there is a good chance that I won’t laugh at it. Does that put that subject off limits? I don’t think so. Some people might find it funny, but if I don’t, I’ll just stay away; I might not even say anything against it as long as no one is getting hurt. I’ll just let others have their fun.

I know what you’re thinking; I assure you, this has not been my day.

This post was prompted by today’s Daily Post Prompt.

Is most unnecessary word “the”?

Today’s Daily Post prompt asks:

If you could permanently ban a word from general usage, which one would it be? Why?

I believe, without a doubt, that the most useless word in the English language is the word “the”, which is also the very first word I would ban from general usage if I were able to do that. I mean, to use that word indicates a single instance of the object “the” is modifying – “the” dog, “the” group – one of each. Coincidentally, the next word(s) I would get rid of is “a” (and “an”), but “the” is a better first choice due to it’s greater length.

So sure, we would be going around sounding like a bunch of Russian immigrants, but can you imagine how much time, money, and text we would save? Books and articles would be significantly shorter, without sacrificing any content. And if, like many other languages, we assumed the default mode of a subject or object to be singular, then articles like “the”, “a”, and “an” really bring nothing to the table – like employees who come to work and consistently goof off all day.

What do you think? Is word “the” necessary thing to have in English language, or not?

My Wiseacre Coffee Maker

Photo Jun 03, 5 34 03 AM

So: how smart does a coffee maker have to be, I wonder?

My coffee maker is a pretty cool gadget, if I do say so myself. It’s a Hamilton Beach Brewstation, which doesn’t use a carafe, but instead makes the coffee into a tank, and then when you want some you press your cup against a button and the coffee dispenses neatly therein. I decided on getting this one because I was tired of carafes; it is as though those glass coffee pots either break, or are made incorrectly. It seems like making the pouring spout is an art form, and if it’s not just right then you get a pot that dribbles back down the side and all over the floor when you’re pouring, or that misses the cup when you’re directly over it. I decided a few years ago to ditch the carafe, and I wouldn’t go back.

It’s not perfect, though. When the tank gets to the end, the last bit tends to dribble down the front where you press the cup, rather than dispense neatly therein. I get around this by tipping the coffee maker forward when I get that last cup out of it, and I can get the last of it with a bit of silt. I can live with that; it’s a good workaround and the silt isn’t horrible. I just swish the cup as I drink a slightly richer brew. Plus, coffee takes a little bit longer for me to make because I’m somewhat OCD – Obsessively Caffeine-Driven – and the unit comes apart in three parts.

There’s the coffee tank, the filter basket, and the permanent mesh filter that I got because I hate using paper filters. So I have to dump the old coffee grounds, and then I wash all three parts under running water with a little palm-size scrub brush that looks like an octopus. I also fill the water tank with water from the Brita pitcher, which if it isn’t full takes longer because I have to add more water to the pitcher before I can proceed; usually I start with this step so that if I have to wait for water to filter it can do so while I’m washing parts (for the freshest coffee flavor). Lastly, I grind my coffee beans and add them to the filter basket and it all stacks up neatly: the coffee tank’s stacked up on the water tank, the filter basket’s stacked up on the coffee tank, and the permanent filter is stacked up in the filter basket, with fresh ground coffee inside.

So essentially, I clean the unit every time I am making coffee, and I get nice coffee from it. And yet the blasted machine has the gall to tell me to clean it once in a while. A look inside the manual says it automatically does this every X time you make coffee, or if a sensor detects some build-up. I could run vinegar through it, but who has time for that? So I ignore the coffee maker, like I ignore so much in life that demands my attention. I don’t have time to do everything, you know.

I have time for me, time for my wife and daughter.
I have time to write and time to run every other week.
I have time to try and grow some food as a declaration of independence.
I have time to recycle and reuse.
I have time to catch up on Arrested Development so I can finally have some closure in my life.
I do not have time to clean my wiseacre coffee maker.
I should just name it Tobias and move on with my life, except then I would be living in fear of what it might say next.

Happy Monday!