Leslie's Omnibus


Oi! I've been dialectized! (A tip of the cap to the 'Neck.)

Tootin' the Horn

I just had a lovely bit of correspondence with one of the resellers from whom I ordered books for the Mercer Middle School kids.

A big old smoocheroo to Lulu of Lulu's Books, who immediately refunded the purchase price of the book when she found out about my little project. Thanks! You made my day.

From the Rowdies in the Back of the Bus

Feste tees up a funny.

UziQ has another.

Elizabeth says: Don't know if this was in all the papers, but, thought you'd like to know...............

Kentucky Fried Chicken today sued Wendy's, claiming that if Wendy's is placing human fingers in their chili they are infringing on KFC's "finger licking good" trademark.


I know this is meant as humor, but I've been boycotting the Today Show since forever just this reason. Blech. We don't like her any more.

(A tip of the cap to my Blogdaddy!)

Book Your Ticket

Ms. Kapp's second class has come through with their lists. I fired off this order this morning:

1 "The Princess Diaries, Volume VI: Princess in Training (Princess Diaries)" Meg Cabot; Hardcover;

2 "Coach Carter" Jasmine Jones; Paperback;

1 "The Grim Grotto (A Series of Unfortunate Events, Book 11)" Lemony Snicket; Hardcover;

1 "Chocolate Star (Chocolate Star)" Sheila Copeland; Mass Market Paperback;

1 "Gossip Girl #7: Nobody Does It Better : A Gossip Girl Novel (Gossip Girl)" Cecily von Ziegesar; Paperback;

1 "Gossip Girl #6: You're the One That I Want : A Gossip Girl Novel (Gossip Girl)" Cecily von Ziegesar; Paperback;

1 "The Fall of Reach (Halo)" ERIC NYLUND; Paperback;

1 "The Flood (Halo)" WILLIAM C. DIETZ; Paperback;

1 "Eragon (Inheritance, Book 1)" CHRISTOPHER PAOLINI; Paperback;

1 "The Code Book for Young People : How to Make It, Break It, Hack It, Crack It" SIMON SINGH; Hardcover;

1 "Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants" ANN BRASHARES; Paperback;

1 "The Notebook" Nicholas Sparks; Paperback;

1 "Holler If You Hear Me: Searching for Tupac Shakur" Michael Eric Dyson; Paperback;

1 "Venus and Serena: Serving From The Hip : 10 Rules for Living, Loving, and Winning" Hilary Beard; Paperback;

1 "The RETURN (REMEMBER ME 2) : THE RETURN" Christopher Pike; Paperback;

1 "Push : A Novel (Vintage Contemporaries)" SAPPHIRE; Paperback;

1 "Naruto, Vol. 1: The Tests of the Ninja" Masashi Kishimoto; Paperback;

1 "A Chocolate Affair" Sheila Copeland; Mass Market Paperback;

1 ".Hack: //Legend of the Twilight, Vol. 1" Tatsuya Hamazaki; Paperback;

1 "Samurai Girl Real Bout High School (Samurai Girl Real Bout Highschool)" Reiji Saiga; Paperback;

1 "Chaos, Corruption, Courage and Glory : A Year in the Life of Boxing" Thomas Hauser; Paperback;

1 "Friday Night Lights: A Town, a Team, and a Dream" H. G. Bissinger; Paperback;

1 "For the Love of the Game : My Story" MARK VANCIL; Hardcover;

1 "The Cry Of The Icemark" Stuart Hill; Hardcover;

1 "Monster : Autobiography of an L.A. Gang Member, The" Sanyika Shakur; Paperback;

1 "We Beat the Street: How a Friendship Led to Success" Sampson Davis; Hardcover.

Once again these kids have blown me away with the variety of books chosen.

I heard from Ms. Kapp today and she says, "I am having them create journals for their books and when we are finished I will mail them off to you." With the kids' permission, I hope to share some of their thoughts with you, too.

Book Your Ticket

Well! Ms. Kapp and her students have been busy in the computer lab. I got the first list of books this morning, and placed this order:

1 "The Carnivorous Carnival (A Series of Unfortunate Events, Book 9)" Lemony Snicket; Hardcover

1 "Someone Like You" Sarah Dessen; Paperback

1 "The Pol Pot Regime: Race, Power, and Genocide in Cambodia under the Khmer Rouge, 1975-79" Ben Kiernan; Paperback

1 "Eragon (Inheritance, Book 1)"CHRISTOPHER PAOLINI; Paperback

1 "Neverwhere" Neil Gaiman; Paperback

1 "The Second Summer of the Sisterhood (Readers Circle)" ANN BRASHARES; Paperback

1 "Pharos : A Ghost Story" Alice Thompson; Paperback

1 "Charlie Bone and the Time Twister (The Children of the Red King, Book 2)" Jenny Nimmo; Hardcover

1 "Holes (Yearling Newbery)" Louis Sachar; Paperback

1 "Prom" Laurie Halse Anderson; Hardcover

1 "The Perks of Being a Wallflower" Stephen Chbosky; Paperback

3 "The Rose That Grew From Concrete" Tupac Shakur; Hardcover

1 "Lisa Lopes : The Life of a Supernova" Nancy Krulik; Paperback

1 "Chicken Soup for the Teenage Soul on Love & Friendship (Chicken Soup for the Soul)" Jack Canfield; Paperback

1 "The Ultimate Code Book: Cheats and the Cheating Cheaters Who Use Them : Prima Games" Prima Temp Authors; Paperback

1 "The Opal Deception (Artemis Fowl, Book 4)" Eoin Colfer; Hardcover

1 "The Hoopster, Revised Edition" Alan Lawrence Sitomer; Hardcover

1 "Don't Sweat The Small Stuff For Teens" Richard Carlson; Paperback

1 "ApoliĆ³n (Spanish Edition)" Tim LaHaye; Paperback

1 "Aaliyah" Tim Footman; Paperback

1 "Across the Nightingale Floor (Tales of the Otori, Book One)" Lian Hearn; Paperback

1 "LeBron James: The Rise of a Star" David Lee, Jr. Morgan; Paperback

1 "Just a Summer Romance" Ann M. Martin; Paperback

1 "Remembering Selena : A Tribute In Pictures & Words" Himilce Novas; Paperback

There are a few of my personal favorites in there -- especially "Eragon". (And I see that the sequel is out. Hmmm. I might just have to buy that one for myself.) There are a couple of other books on the list that look very intriguing, and may also find themselves on my "must buy for myself" list.

Thanks for getting back to me, guys! I can't wait to hear how you like the books.

(By golly, this is FUN!)

From the Rowdies in the Back of the Bus

I don't know about you, but I could use a good laugh today. Let's see what the Rowdies plopped in my mail bag while I was gone:

From the Sweetheart of Shell Knob, MO:

Little known fact. Did you Know?

A study conducted by UCLA's Department of Psychiatry has revealed that the kind of male face a woman finds attractive can differ depending on where she is in her menstrual cycle.

For instance, if she is ovulating, she is attracted to men with rugged and masculine features.

However, if she is menstruating, or menopausal, she is more prone to be attracted to a man with scissors lodged in his temple and a bat jammed up his ass while he is on fire.
- - - - -

A brief lesson in Chicago-ese:

1. Grachki (grach'-key): Chicagoese for "garage key" as in, "Yo, Theresa, waja do wit da grachki? Howmy supposta cut da grass if I don't git intada grach?"

2. Uptadaendada(up-ta-da-en'-dada): As in, "Joey, you kin ride yur bike uptadaendada alley but not acrost or I'll bust yur butt."

3. Sammich: Chicagoese for sandwich. When made with sausage, it's a sassage sammich; when made with shredded beef, it's an Italian Beef sammich, a local delicacy consisting of piles of spicy meat in a perilously soggy bun.

4. Da: This article is a key part of Chicago speech, as in "Da Bears" or "Da Mare" -- the latter denoting Richard M. Daley, or Richie, as he's often called.

5. Jewels: Not family heirlooms or a tender body region, but a popular name for one of the region's dominant grocery store chains. "I'm goin' to da Jewels to pick up some sassage."

6. Field's: Marshall Field, a prominent Chicago department store. Also Carson Pirie Scott, another major department store chain, is simply called "Carson's."

7. Tree: The number between two and four. "We were lucky dat we only got tree inches of snow da udder night."

8. Prairie: A vacant lot, especially one on which weeds are growing.

9. Over by dere: Translates to "over by there," a way of emphasizing a site presumed familiar to the listener. As in, "I got the sassage at da Jewels down on Kedzie, over by dere."

10. Kaminski Park: The mispronounced name of the ball! park where the Chicago White Sox (da Sox) play baseball. Comiskey Park was recently renamed U.S. Cellular Field (yuck!).

11. Frunchroom: As in, "Getouttada frunchroom wit dose muddy shoes." It's not the "parlor." It's not the "living room." In the land of the bungalow it's the "frunchroom," a named derived, linguists believe, from "front room."

12. Use: Not the verb, but the plural pronoun "you." "Where's use goin'?"

13. Downtown: Anywhere near The Lake, south of The Zoo (Lincoln Park= Zoo) and north of Soldier Field.

14. The Lake: Lake Michigan. (What other lake is there?) It's often used by local weathermen, "cooler by The Lake."

15. Boys Town: A section on Halsted between Belmont and Addison which is lined with gay bars both sides of the street. "Didn't I see use in Boys Town in front of da Manhole?"

16. Braht:: Short for Bratwurst. "Gimme a braht wit kraut."

17. Cashbox: Traffic reporter slang for tollbooths. "Dere's a delay at da cashbox on da Skyway."

18. Goes: Past or present tense of the verb "say." For example, "Then he goes, 'I like this place'!"

19. Guys: Used when addressing two or more people, regardless of each individual's gender.

20. Pop: A soft drink. Don't say "soda" in this town. "Do ya wanna cannapop?"

21. Sliders: Nickname for hamburgers from White Castle, a popular Midwestern burger chain. "Dose sliders I had last night gave me da runs."

22. The Taste: The Taste of Chicago Festival, a huge extravaganza in Grant Park featuring samples of Chicagoland cuisine which takes place each year around the Fourth of July holiday.

23. "Jieetyet?": Translates to, "Did you eat yet?"

24. Winter and Construction: Punch line to the joke, "What are the two seasons in Chicago?"

25. Cuppa Too-Tree: is Chicagoese for "a couple, two, three" which really means "a few." For example, "Hey Mike, dere any beerz left in da cooler over by dere?" "Yeh, a cuppa too-tree."

26. 588-2300: Chicago knows this commercial jingle and the carpet company you'll get if you call that number -- Empire!27.

Junk Dror: You will usually find the 'junk drawer' in the kitchen filled to the brim with miscellaneous, but very important, junk.

28. Southern Illinois: Anything south of I-80.29.

Expressways: The Interstates in the immediate Chicagoland area areusually known just by their 'name' and not their Interstate number: the Dan Ryan ("the Ryan"), the Stevenson, the Kennedy, the Eisenhower (the "Ike"), and the Edens.

30. Gym Shoes: The rest of the country may refer to them as sneakers or running shoes but Chicagoans will always call them gym shoes!

From Marian:

An 80 year old man went to the doctor for a checkup and the doctor was amazed at what good shape the guy was in. The doctor asked, "To what do you attribute your good health?"

The old timer said, "I'm a pilot and that's why I'm in such good shape. I 'm up well before daylight and out flying up and down the countryside."

The doctor said, "Well, I'm sure that helps, but there's got to be more to it. How old was your dad when he died?"

The old timer said, "Who said my dad's dead?" The doctor said, "You mean you're 80 years old and your dad's still alive? How old is he?"

The old timer said, "He's 100 yrs old and, in fact, he flew next to me this morning in his own airplane. That's why he's still alive... he's a pilot!"

The doctor said, "Well, that's great, but I'm sure there's more to it. How about your dad's dad? How old was he when he died?"

The old timer said, "Who said my grandpa's dead?" The doctor said, "You mean you're 80 years old and your grandfather's still living! How old is he?"

The old timer said, "He's 118 yrs old."

The doctor was getting frustrated at this point and said, "I guess he went flying with you this morning too?"

The old timer said, "No...Grandpa couldn't go this morning because he got married."

The Doctor said in amazement, "Got married!! Why would a 118-year-old guy want to get married?"

The old timer said, "Who said he wanted to?"

From Elizabeth:

How quick are you on that mouse button?
- - - - -

The local bar was so sure that its bartender was the strongest man around that they offered a standing $1000 bet: The bartender would squeeze a lemon until all the juice ran into a glass, and hand the lemon to a patron. Anyone who could squeeze one more drop of juice out would win the money. Many people had tried over time (professional wrestlers, longshoremen, etc.), but nobody could do it.

One day this scrawny little man came in, wearing thick glasses and a polyester suit, and said in a tiny, squeaky voice, "I'd like to try the bet."

After the laughter had died down, the bartender agreed, grabbed a lemon, and squeezed away. Then he handed the dried, wrinkled remains of the rind to the little man.

But the crowd's laughter turned to total silence as the man clenched his fist around the lemon and SIX drops fell into the glass.

As the crowd cheered, the bartender paid the $1000, and asked the little man, "What do you do for a living? Are you a lumberjack, a weight lifter, or what?

"The man replied, "I work for the IRS."
- - - - -

A hamburger walked into a bar, climbed up onto a bar stool, looked at the bartender and ordered a tall cold beer.

The bartender looked at the hamburger for a moment and replied, "I'm sorry sir, but I can't sell you that drink."

"Why can't you sell me a drink?"

After looking at the hamburger for another moment, the bartender replied, "I'm sorry, we don't serve food in here."

From Nancy V.:

Maude and Claude, both 91, lived in a retirement community. They met in their social center and discovered over time that they enjoyed each other's company. After several weeks of meeting for coffee, Claude asked Maude out for dinner and much to his delight, she accepted.

They had a lovely evening. They dined at the most romantic restaurant in town, and, despite his age, Claude was still a charmer.

Afterward Claude asked Maude to join him at his place for an after dinner drink. Things continued along a natural course and age being no inhibitor Maude soon joined Claude for a most enjoyable roll in the hay.

As they were basking in the after glow of the magic moment they'd shared, each was lost for a time in their own thoughts.

Claude was thinking: "If I'd known she was a virgin, I'd have been more gentle."

Maude was thinking: "If I'd known he could still do it, I'd have taken off my pantyhose."
- - - - -

Why God made Moms (Answers given by elementary school age children to the following questions. )

Why did God make mothers?
1. She's the only one who knows where the scotch tape is.
2. Mostly to clean the house.
3. To help us out of there when we were getting born.

How did God make mothers?
1. He used dirt, just like for the rest of us.
2. Magic plus super powers and a lot of stirring.
3. God made my mom just the same like he made me. He just used bigger parts.

What ingredients are mothers made of?
1. God makes mothers out of clouds and angel hair and everything nice in the world and one dab of mean.
2. They had to get their start from men's bones. Then they mostly use string, I think.

Why did God give you your mother and not some other mom?
1. We're related.
2. God knew she likes me a lot more than other people's moms like me.

What kind of little girl was your mom?
1. My mom has always been my mom and none of that other stuff.
2. I don't know because I wasn't there, but my guess would be pretty bossy.
3. They say she used to be nice.

What did mom need to know about dad before she married him?
1. His last name.
2. She had to know his background. Like is he a crook? Does he get drunk on beer?
3. Does he make at least $800 a year? Did he say NO to drugs and YES to chores?

Why did your mom marry your dad?
1. My dad makes the best spaghetti in the world. And my mom eats a lot.
2. She got too old to do anything else with him.
3. My grandma says that mom didn't have her thinking cap on.

Who's the boss at your house?
1. Mom doesn't want to be boss, but she has to because dad's such a goof ball.
2. Mom. You can tell by room inspection. She sees the stuff under the bed.
3. I guess Mom is, but only because she has a lot more to do than dad.

What's the difference between moms and dads?
1. Moms work at work & work at home, & dads just go to work at work.
2. Moms know how to talk to teachers without scaring them.
3. Dads are taller & stronger, but moms have all the real power 'cause that's who you got to ask if you want to sleep over at your friend's.
4. Moms have magic, they make you feel better without medicine.

What does your mom do in her spare time?
1. Mothers don't do spare time.
2. To hear her tell it, she pays bills all day long.

What would it take to make your mom perfect?
1. On the inside she's already perfect. Outside, I think some kind of plastic surgery.
2. Diet. You know, her hair. I'd diet, maybe blue.

If you could change one thing about your mom, what would it be?
1. She has this weird thing about me keeping my room clean. I'd get rid of that.
2. I'd make my mom smarter. Then she would know it was my sister who did it and not me.
3. I would like for her to get rid of those invisible eyes on her back.
- - - - -

The Sermon

"Dear Lord," he began with arms extended and a rapturous look on his upturned face, "without you, we are but dust..."

He would have continued, but at that moment one very obedient little girl (who was listening carefully for a change!) leaned over to her mother and asked quite audibly in her shrill little girl voice, "Mommy, WHAT is butt dust?"

Church was pretty much over at that point...
- - - - -

Cookie Recipe

1... Look in cookbook for cookie recipe.
2... Get cup of coffee.
3... Get cat off of cookbook.
4... Find that special recipe.
5... Get cat's nose out of coffee mug.
6... Go to fridge and get eggs.
7... Get dry ingredients from cupboard.
8... Break eggs in small bowl.
9... Sift dry ingredients into a large bowl.
10.. Answer the phone.
11.. Cat ate eggs; get more from fridge.
12.. Get cat out of flour bowl and dust cat off.
13.. Get Band-Aids for scratches on hands.
14.. Throw flour out and get more.
15.. Preheat oven for cookies.
16.. Glare at cat with desire to bake cat now.
17.. Watch cat run for cover into bathroom.
18.. Flour the counter to roll out cookie dough.
19.. Run to bathroom to investigate loud crashing sound.
20.. Cat has toilet paper all over floor and your personal bathroom things have been knocked over on top of the counter.
21.. Yell at cat. Cat falls in toilet bowl.
22.. Take cat out of toilet to dry cat off.
23.. Get bandages to cover more scratches on arms and legs.
24.. Clean up bathroom.
25.. Run to kitchen to see what cat is doing now.
26.. Get cat off floured counter in kitchen.
27.. Try to pick cat hairs out of flour.
28.. Step on cat's tail and get bitten in ankle.
29.. Get coat, car keys, cat, and drive to store to buy cookies.
30.. Squeeze cat through partially open window into a stranger's car at the store parking lot.
31.. Eat most of the cookies on the way home.

--author unknown


Jeeze! It's really hard to get back in the blogging mood when two bloggers I really admire are having a pretty big, very public spat. I'm not going to point you to either blog at the moment, because I really want to believe they'll work it out and go back to being the tight friends that they have been up until this point.

I'd like to remind both of these folks that there is still magic in the world and good in the people around us. What's more important? A friendship... or being "right"? (And remember, your answer to that question says a hell of a lot about you.) Can't you guys find the joy, love, compassion, generosity, appreciation and humor that's always been a part of your relationship?

Tootin' the Horn

Back at work. It's as plain as the nose on my face: They missed me. They really missed me.


(More tomorrow.)


I went to dinner one night with a bunch of my mom's friends from her country club while I was down in Florida. I have just one question. If they were all horrified by the bridal party sporting bald heads, multiple piercings and tattoos... and I found that nothing out of the ordinary... what crazy things are young people going to have to do to fascinate and horrify me when I attain senior citizenship?

One of the idiosyncrasies of senior citizenship in Florida seems to be the willingness to blurt out the first thought or observation that pops into their heads. And usually not quietly. Want to know what your parents/grandparents are thinking? Go to the early bird special at any restaurant in the great state of Florida... and keep your ears open... if they aren't burning already. There is no such thing as self-editing down there. It's one lifelong episode of Politcally Incorrect.

The Mom Update

Mom is actually doing far better than her radiologist expected -- and I was there to get that news live and in person. Still, between the chemo and radiation she's really slowed down a lot. By the time I left, she had begun Week 4 of 6 weeks (Monday through Friday) of treatment. That would knock the stuffing out of just about anybody.

We didn't do a lot. One trip to the doctor and a visit to one of her many favorite resale shops, and she was done for the day. Thursday we saw the radiologist, dermatologist and the internist. Mom looked like she'd been run over by a steam roller by the time we were done.

The esophagitis is just starting to become irritating, but really good drugs are taking care of most of that. Another upside of that is that she actually sleeps through through a good 8 hours or so a night -- not her usual waking two or three times a night.

A downside of all these treatments is that she's lost a good bit of weight that she didn't already have to lose. Body mass loss is now an issue.

The upside, in her opinion? The docs all say to quit worrying about her blood sugar and start eating things that will put some weight on her. Protein -- more than 4 ounces once a day! Ice cream! Real ice cream! Fresh fruit. A Frosty from Wendy's. That's the challenge. It's difficult, because she can't eat very much at any one time (some days even one scrambled egg at a time is a problem). Thank goodness for Boost Plus and Ensure Plus. They've finally made them really palatable, and she can get a whole serving down in one sitting.

She's doing the "Sarasota Shuffle" (shuffling along like a little old lady with a walker) at the moment, but indications are that she'll start getting some pep back in her step when this is all over.

We're keeping our fingers crossed. Your prayers have been a wonderful source of strength and comfort. Keep'em coming.

Home Again, Home Again, Jiggity-Jig

Things I missed while I was gone: Buckaroo Bonsai, the Devine Miss Marilyn, Tiger Boots, Velociman and the rest of this wild bunch. I also missed the return of one of my all-time favorite bloggers. Computer access. Egads! I didn't know I'd miss it so much.

What I didn't miss: 80 degree weather one day, 50 degrees the next.

What I came back to: 40 degrees and rainy, pee-yucky weather... and BB and the girls (which entirely made up for the lousy weather). No posts from Pronoia. (See! I told you that it's not blogging that's hard -- it's the part where you actually have to discipline yourself to just sit down and write.)

Things I found out along the way: You can smoke in the bars in the airport in Charlotte, NC. Those doohickeys you find in drug stores for making photos from your digital camera's memory stick are a snap to use. Boost Plus and Ensure Plus actually taste pretty good (more about that in The Mom Update). Airport security seems more interested in confiscating lighters than it does about checking photo IDs. I can pack an amazing amount of stuff in a small travel bag.

It's good to be back.

Bus Fumes

Another family ripped in two by this kind of nonsense.

MamaMontezz is on a tear. If you're not reading her daily, you're really missing something.


Now that looks like a great camp for grown ups. Sign me up, please!

Book Your Ticket

I met the coolest woman tonight. Ms. Kapp teaches English literature to 7th graders in the Seattle, Washington area. The best thing that she and I share an incredible love of books.

So... I'm throwing out a challenge to students in Susannah Kapp's two English classes at Mercer Middle School in Seattle, Washington:

I love books. I read upwards of 300 books a year. I love books like "The Princess Bride" and I love Tupac Shakur's poetry.

In talking to Ms. Knapp, I realized something, and that is that it's important for each person to have one book that belongs to them, and them alone. I would love to share my love of literature and the power of words with everyone. But, in the real world, there are limits.

So... I am limiting my challenge to Ms. Knapp's classes. 60 students.

To each of you 60 students, here is my challenge: go to Amazon.com and pick one book -- either paperback or used. I don't care if it's literature, self-help or vocational. Do it before I get back to work on April 24th. Send your choices to gotb_50-at-hotmail-dot-com. On April 25th, I'm going to place a book order, and every one in Ms. Knapp's class that responds will get the book that he or she requests. It's your book forever.

Here's the bigger challenge: post and tell me why you really loved or hated the book that you ordered, and I just might order you another one.

Tag. You're it.

Substitute and Trainee Drivers

From time to time I expect to have some substitute (guest) and trainee (want to blog but terrified to start one) drivers.

This coming week will be busy, what with extending my lease, packing my suitcases, wrapping things up at the office and wrangling with the IRS all before Friday.

Therefore, I've asked my buddy Pronoia to take the wheel as a trainee for a spell. Get the feel for writing on a regular basis. To me, that's what makes or breaks a blog -- and it's far more difficult than it looks.

I'll be checking in every couple of days, just to make sure he's not running this thing off the road, but also to make sure he does more than start the motor and kick the tires. (And I'm keeping one foot on the cheater break, too!)

See you when I get back from Sunny Florida.


A few pointers on blogging anonymously... especially if you're unhappy with your employer and planning to post about it. This should be required reading for bloggers everywhere.

(A tip of the cap to Orin Kerr.)

From the Rowdies in the Back of the Bus

The Sweetheart of Shell Knob, MO sent this: How Many Dogs Does It Take to Change A Light Bulb?"

Golden Retriever: The sun is shining, the day is young, we've got our whole lives ahead of us, and you're inside worrying about a stupid burned out bulb?

Border Collie: Just one. And then I'll replace any wiring that's not up to code.

Dachshund: You know I can't reach that stupid lamp!

Rottweiler: Make me.

Boxer: Who cares? I can still play with my squeaky toys in the dark.

Labrador Retriever: Oh, me, me!!!!! Pleeeeeeeeeze let me change the light bulb! Can I? Can I? Huh? Huh? Huh? Can I? Pleeeeeeeeeze, please, please, please!

German Shepherd: I'll change it as soon as I've led these people from the dark, check to make sure I haven't missed any,and make just one more perimeter patrol to see that no one has tried to take advantage of the situation.

Jack Russell Terrier: I'll just pop it in while I'm bouncing off the walls and furniture.

Old English Sheep Dog: Light bulb? I'm sorry, but I don't see a light bulb!

Cocker Spaniel: Why change it? I can still pee on the carpet in the dark.

Chihuahua: Yo quiero Taco Bulb.

Pointer: I see it, there it is, there it is, right there.....

Greyhound: It isn't moving. Who cares?

Australian Shepherd: First, I'll put all the light bulbs in a little circle...

Poodle: I'll just blow in the Border Collie's ear and he'll do it. By the time he finishes rewiring the house, my nails will be dry."

The Cat: Dogs do not change light bulbs. People change light bulbs. So, the real question is: How long will it be before I can expect some light, some dinner, and a massage?"

I admit it. This really made me giggle.

So did this.

This, too. (A tip of the cap to Conspiracy Dude.)

If you can get through this one without giggling, you have far more intestinal fortitude than I.

Didn't you ever get the lyrics a tiny bit wrong? (A tip of the cap to Evil Glenn.)

My friend Barrie sent this for Jeff, because she heard how much he loves llamas.


Eew, eew, eew, eew, EEEEEWWWWWW!!!

Bus Fumes

Dear God. Still think that slope ain't slippery? (Be sure to scroll down through the comments.)


Well, if the next book in the series won't be out for a while, at least there's this little test. Son of a gun if I'm not one of my favorite characters -- John Snow. To tell you the truth, though, I'd really rather be Arya.

(A big tip of the cap to Professor Bainbridge.)

Bus Fumes

Looks like that slope is getting steeper and more slippery all the time.
"The hospital went to court to have the woman's daughter removed as guardian because she was carrying out the mother's wishes a little too well."
I'm really concerned that the lives innocent people may be getting less consideration than that of a mass murderer.


I made it all the way through this video without dying of laughter or turning it off in sheer embarrassment. Can you? (I really hate to admit I'm a child of that era.)

And can you name the musician... er, magician playing keyboards and, um, singing lead?

(A tip of the cap to Preston Taylor Holmes.)

Bus Fumes

Good. Judge Lefkow and her family have been through enough without having to worry about what that bastard is up to for one moment longer.

Un. Be. Lievable.

Talk about an ethical dilemna! I don't envy the Mad House Madman this one, and I know whereof he speaks.

Several years ago I did volunteer work as a "support manager" for a person with AIDS (or "PWA") through Howard Brown Health Center here in Chicago. A support manager was basically an advocate for the PWA -- making sure that he or she got whatever support services they needed.

HBHC staff stressed that support managers were under no circumstances to make judgemental statements about the attitudes or actions of our clients to our clients. That was grounds for a "thanks, but no thanks" and an immediate kick to the curb.

Support managers were required to go to a support group for support managers at least once a month and, believe me, sometimes we really needed that support.

For example, one of my fellow support managers had a client who had full blown AIDS, but was still going to the bath houses and having unprotected sex.




When his support manager asked him if he told his partners that he had AIDS, his response was, "No. Why should I? If they don't ask, that's their problem, not mine. And if they don't want to use condoms, that's their problem, too."*

Now, no matter how reprehensible the rest of us thought the little bastard was, our job at that point was to support the support manager, and help him find a way to help his client without expressing his personal horror.

In one of the strangest strategy sessions I've ever sat through, we helped this support manager come up with a plan try and get the client to change his mind and his behavior without appearing to be judgemental. The tactic we cam up with was for the support manager to discuss with his client the fact that the client might well be hastening his own demise by becoming reinfected with any number of additional strains of the virus if he continued on this path.

Imagine, if you will, the mindset of having to appeal to the vanity and selfishness of such a person. But that was the likeliest way to achieve the desired behavior modification -- and hopefully to preventing him from passing the virus to anyone else.

Here's the hard part: the support manager could not ask him about his partners, nor could any of the rest of us. In order for the support manager program to work for everyone, confidentiality is paramount -- even in a case like this.

This is where I really understand what the Madman is saying. Sometimes you just want to run screaming into the night. Or grab someone by the shoulders and shake them until their teeth rattle. And you just can't.

For many, many people, that program was a lifeline to living with dignity and be recognized as human beings at a time when no one in the world wanted to acknowledge their existence, let alone their humanity.

We quickly learned that you do the best you can, and leave the rest to God or karma or whatever you want to call it. There's not always a satisfying answer.


*This attitude was a significant anomaly, not the norm.


I hope they televise this. I really do. What an incredible hoot.

Six inch WHAT???

Why does this not surprise me?

End of the Line

Prince Rainier has passed away. Godspeed.


Think Twinkie and hit this link.

Imagination Exploration passport. Hmmm. I think these should come with our birth certificates.

Oh, goodie. I'm so (un)excited.

This, on the other hand, is delightful news.


"Bus drivers do it in the commuter lane" Now you know.

"More than 60 percent of wine drinkers are female and women buy 80 percent of the wine sold in the U.S, yet the wine industry has largely ignored them," says Tracey Mason, who, as BBWE's Director of Innovation, spearheaded the project. "So our all-female team started with the question: What do women want?" Through research, the team discovered that an astounding 80 percent of women are dissatisfied with their appearance and that 45 percent are on a diet on any given day. And because of the increased demands of career and home, women have less time than ever for themselves or their friends. "That was our big 'Aha,'" says Mason. "We wanted women to feel better about themselves and their choices, realizing that often our desire to have it all means we have to give up something in return: that yummy dessert, the book we've been meaning to read, or just sharing a laugh with friends over a few glasses of wine."

Amazed to find this after research? What an incredible twit. What an incredible boondoggle. You can be sure that I won't be buying that swill. Or that bunch of bunk they're using to sell it.

Rest Stops

What is the fascination men have with discussing their bodily emissions at great length and in glorious Technicolor? I swear they’d do scratch’n sniff blogging if the technology were available. (I’m laughing and shaking my head in wonder at the same time.)

This fascination with bodily waste is not generally a chick characteristic. In fact, the only girl or woman I ever knew who cared discuss such things that way was a year my junior in high school, a cheerleader named Cathy Bubblitz. Yep. Bubblitz. Big poofy platinum blonde hair. Pale pink frosted lipstick. Big wad of Bazooka cracking at all times. Raccoon eyes from eyeliner and mascara. Pink was her signature color when Reese Witherspoon was still in diapers. If you asked her she’d proudly tell you she farted pink and it smelled like bubble gum.

I have to admit, the girl had style.

Chartered Excursion -- The VIB* Tour

Well, I may have to miss this, but I did get to participate in a mini-blogmeet here in Chicago yesterday.

Buckaroo Bonsai and I met Patterico, Mrs. Patterico and the mini-Pattericos, Pejman and Spoons for lunch at Pizzeria Due. (Okay, the truth. We started out at Pizzeria Uno -- the original -- and couldn't get seated so we walked down the block.)

I'm telling you, I was among some of my biggest blogging heroes. So what are they like?

Well, Patrick in person is pretty laid back... until you get him talking about one of his hot button issues (and any one will do). Then he turns into an atomic fireball. (Confession: I love atomic fireballs.) His blog is an accurate reflection of his personality -- you do not want to be on the opposite side of an argument from him.

Mrs. Patterico is a delight, and so are the kids (I must confess, Buckaroo Bonsai was very smitten with Little Miss Patterico. He's a big softie when it comes to kids and critters, and they usually really like him, too). I wish I'd had more of a chance to chat with the Mrs., but, bloggers being bloggers, I kept getting sucked back into conversation with the fellows. I hope to make it up to her one evening by keeping her company while Patterico himself is off to the Ring Cycle.

Pejman is as elegantly droll in person as his writing suggests. We did find one little flaw, however -- he confesses to having no sense of direction... and he's correct. It made for a trip around the block and good laugh -- and no one laughed harder than Pejman himself. He's an intellectual all right, but one with a great big heart.

Spoons. You just have to love him. If Patterico is the fireball and Pejman is the intellectual, Spoons is the pragmatist of the group. And you've got to love any guy who can write like this or this.

Topics ranged from blog hosting services to RSS feeds to politics to the Pope and more. My head is still spinning. Yeesh! It's fun rubbing elbows with the big boys!

Thanks, guys for such a wonderful afternoon.

P.S. to Spoons: Here's the info on that Pat Sajak blog. Thoughtful, interesting stuff, no?

*Very Important Blogger

**As an aside, we just missed
Ernie the Attorney, who was in town for the ABA Tech Show, but managed to pass the phone for a few minutes for hellos around the table. Maybe next time....

***Every one of those guys was young enough to be my son.



Roadside Diversions

More Carnival of the Khakis:

Chris Muir strikes again.

Roger Simon says, "That Berger would be returned his national security clearance after three years (or ever) is beyond any judicial parody in a Bertolt Brecht play."

Llama Butchers link artwork here.

Mischa the Merciless has a point.

A thousand lashes with a wet noodle. Yep. That's what Sandy's getting.

Carnival of the Capitalists is up here.

Carnival of the Cats is there.

From the Rowdies in the Back of the Bus


Circa Bellum gets an email from the dog.

Nancy V. is responsible for this unspeakable horror.

Happy weekend!


You can just keep on waiting, Bubba.

The End of the Line

The Chicken Man is off to that big henhouse in the sky. Godspeed, Mr. Perdue.

Holy moly! Safe journey home, Your Eminence.

Update: Er, false alarm. But it isn't looking good.

Roadside Diversions

Whoohoo! We can finally do a new Carnival of the Khakis! Seems there's new life in Sandy Berger's pants (scary thought, isn't it?):

Chris Muir checks in here.

Spoons weighs in here and points to the Confederate Yankee there, as well.

The Instapundit comments and links here and here.

Lime Shurbet snarks here.

It's a Pundit points to relevant lyrics there.

Raging_Dave is, well, raging about it here. "Fuck 'em all. Nuke D.C. now."

Jim notes that it's "Just a little Washington 'oopsie,' I suppose."

Conspiracy Dude provides the headline of the day.

Steve illustrates the point.

Juliette says, "Honest mistake, my behind. A good judge would throw the book at Berger for insulting his/her intelligence. But he’ll probably get slapped on the wrists."

C.D. Harris says he's Getting Off Light, and proceeds to show you just how light.

The Cracker Barrel Philospher cracks wise.

John Cole rounds up the history and coverage here. (But he missed this historical gem.)

Kevin notes, "...Berger will have his clearance back right in the midst of primary season in 2008."

LaShawn says, "I told you so."

All I have to say is, if he's gonna get a spanking, he's proven he knows how to stuff his pants to take the sting out of the swing.

Carnival of the Recipes is up here. It's loaded with wonderful stuff. Just go there.