Leslie's Omnibus


I'm back from Florida, and not a moment too soon.

While I was visiting with the Princess Mom, she pulled out my dad's high school yearbook for his senior year. Since Dad can't answer from the ether, I'm hoping someone out there may be able to answer two questions that cropped up as a result:

One: Dad's ambition was "To be the next Nelson Church." Who the hell is Nelson Church? I'd really kind of like to know so I can figure out whether Dad achieved that particular goal.

Two: Several of the guys in his class listed "reciprocating dingle arms" as their pet peeve. What in the world is a reciprocating dingle arm???

It may just take a member of the class of '47 to answer these pressing questions.

Chartered Excursion -- The Blogosphere

I'm off to visit the Princess Mom, and nobody offered to take the keys to the Omnibus for a few days. But -- have no fear -- I won't leave you with nothing to read. Here are a few of my own daily reads. Go visit 'em while I'm gone:

My Most Esteemed Blogdaddy
The Beautiful and Atrocious Jeff
The God of Shoes
The Goddesses of Fashion Snarkage
The Droll and Erudite Pejman
The Spoon Meister
My Favorite Firecracker
Zonker von Thunder and Roses
Tall, Blonde and Lethal
Mouth of the Got-Damn South
The Mixologist with the Mostest
The Scots Smoothie
That Other Omnibus Gal

I could go on and on, but these are some of my all time faves. C'mon. Give 'em a try.

From the Rowdies in the Back of the Bus

From Marian:


FREE YORKSHIRE TERRIER. 8 years old. Hateful little dog. Bites.

FREE PUPPIES: 1/2 Cocker Spaniel, 1/2 sneaky neighbor's dog.

FREE PUPPIES.... Part German Shepherd, part stupid dog.

FREE GERMAN SHEPHERD 85 lbs. Neutered. Speaks German.

FOUND DIRTY WHITE DOG. Looks like a rat... been out a while... better be a reward.

COWS, CALVES: NEVER BRED.. Also 1 gay bull for sale.

NORDIC TRACK $300 Hardly used... call Chubby.

GEORGIA PEACHES, California grown - 89 cents lb.

JOINING NUDIST COLONY! Must sell washer and dryer $300.



FOR SALE BY OWNER: Complete set of Encyclopedia Britannica. 45 volumes. Excellent condition. $1,000 or best offer. No longer needed, got married last month. Wife knows everything.


Look like the guys are Jib-Jab are cashing in on their popularity. Good for them. At least they'll make the Super Bowl ads interesting (for a change).

From the Rowdies in the Back of the Bus

This little piece of wisdom comes from the Sweetheart of Shell Knob, MO:

Keep this philosophy in mind the next time you either hear or are about to repeat a rumor.

In ancient Greece (469 - 399 BC), Socrates was widely lauded for his wisdom.

One day the great philosopher came upon an acquaintance who ran up to him excitedly and said, "Socrates, do you know what I just heard about one of your students?"

"Wait a moment," Socrates replied. "Before you tell me I'd like you to pass a little test. It's called the Test of Three."


"That's right," Socrates continued "Before you talk to me about my student let's take a moment to test what you're going to say. The first test is Truth. Have you made absolutely sure that what you are about to tell me is true?"

"No," the man said, "actually I just heard about it."

"All right," said Socrates. "So you don't really know if it's true or not. Now let's try the second test, the test of Goodness. Is what you are about to tell me about my student something good?"

"No, on the contrary..."

"So," Socrates continued, "you want to tell me something bad about him even though you're not certain it's true?"

The man shrugged, a little embarrassed.

Socrates continued. "You may still pass though, because there is a third test - the filter of Usefulness. Is what you want to tell me about my student going to be useful to me?"

"No, not really."

"Well," concluded Socrates, "if what you want to tell me is neither True nor Good nor even Useful, why tell it to me at all?"

The man was defeated and left, ashamed.

This is the reason Socrates was a great philosopher and held in such high esteem. It also explains why he never found out that Plato was banging his wife.

Ba dum bum.

Tootin' the Horn

Hey! I found another Omnibus! It's good reading, too.

Bus Fumes

A pregnant teen manages to graduate from high school and the school won't allow her to participate in commencement exercises, but lets the putative father participate??? Good for Alysha. The girl's got serious guts. Let's hope that takes her far in life.

Yeah. I'll admit it. I voted for this doofus. But I certainly won't make that mistake again. Who knew?

If It's Not One Thing...

The Sweetheart of Shell Knob, MO wrote:
"I just read your blog -- I'm so sorry your mom isn't doing as well as hoped. I'm keeping the prayers going and will send good thoughts and prayers your way as you head back down there. How much less of a worry this will be when you get her back to Chgo. Will you fly her back or drive down to get her?

"Long distance or not, let me know if there's anything we can do -- we can come to Chgo if needed; it's only about 10 hours up there. And if you need to talk..... Whatever you need. just holler."

I can't tell you how much that means.

Here's the problem, though -- the real issue with getting Mom home is that she's making it difficult because: 1) she says she's not happy with her doctors up here... but has done absolutely nothing about asking her FL docs for referrals; and, 2) she won't make any plans to come back without her docs' permission... but hasn't asked when they think it would be okay for her to travel.

Yes, she's been flattened like a pancake by this last treatment. Yes, she's felt sicker than a dog. You think she'd take every damned drug the doctors prescribed in order to get some relief from that, right? BUT, NOOOOOOOO. Not her.

I think there's a little part of the Princess Mom that likes all the attention she's been getting lately. How many people do you know who can snap their fingers and have people fly halfway across the country at the drop of a hat not once, but twice? (That includes my brother and his family, my cousin and myself.) She admits she can't do much of anything for herself at the moment, and has gotten used to (translated: "is wallowing in") being waited on.

My job is to light a stick of dynamite under her ass to get her wanting to get back here ASAP. Usually I'm the helpful, sympathetic child. Not this time. Now I'm the hands on hips, exasperated, cattle-prod wielding harridan who's going to help her get inspired... OR ELSE.

Am I sympathetic? Yep. To a point. But I think we passed that point about a week ago.

She'd better get moving while I'm there, too. Why? Because my sister is going down the week following to finish up getting Mom going... and Heidi... well... let's just say you REALLY don't want to mess with her.


Yesterday a reader posted a comment that he/she was offended by my use of the term "drive-bys," thinking that I was flippantly referring to drive-by shootings. To the contrary, my use of the term means that thing I see as I'm driving past that sparks a fleeting thought or a memory of something I'm supposed to remember, but have already forgotten (and trying to recall whatever that forgotten thing is will nag at the back of my consciousness all day... and then I won't be able to remember what prompted that nagging feeling in the first place). That happens to me all the time... and usually that thought or memory is gone as quickly as the scenery has passed. "Drive-Bys" is my way of capturing those moments. No offense intended.

I have an ear worm again. It's Wayne Newton singing "Scarlet Ribbons."

I have NO idea where that scary combination came from, but the song has been bouncing around the back of my skull since about 4:00 this morning. Make it stop! Please!

Written by a blogger FOR bloggers, I presume?

But it won't pay for contraception? I'm with Marc here. Quick! Pass me a cluebat.

Holy Moley!!! I didn't know this existed. Now I know how safe (or unsafe) my street really is. Yikes.

(A tip of the cap to Jeff Jarvis.)

The great karmic wheel turns. Heh.

My office just got a new, high tech and very spiffy GBC electronic hole-punch. It's not working. Again. The note attached says, "Not punching properly. Use the little guy." Call me naughty, but I'm really tempted to buy one of these to put next to that sign.

Besides -- I think it would be more efficient -- not to mention less costly to maintain -- than either of the other ones.

Challenge of the day: keep a straight face while reading this. Or this.

It's a FAKE??? Say it ain't so....

Update: Egads! It actually happened in Episode 230. (But that still doesn't explain the ear worm.)

Update 2: It's no secret that I am a very fast reader. Sometimes that gets me into trouble. This headline had me in stitches. Why? I read it as "The Monkey in God's Army." Totally different picture.

If that's not enough, there's an article in Vanity Fair about Steve Wynn's new hotel in Vegas. This little excerpt had me on the floor when I realized that I had misread one little word:

"Suddenly we're suffounded by Rachmaninoff's 'Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganinni,' thundering from who knows how many speakers. 'Louder!' yells Wynn. The mountain is illuminated. The lagoon bubbles and gurgles. Beneath the water, 4,000 light-emitting diodes burst with fabulous colors in psychedelic patterns, aaggitated swirls of blue, yellow, and pink race and ripple across the water in time to the piano concerto. Enthralled, Wynn cuts through the air with an invisible baton."

Okay. Change "diodes" to... well... I'll leave that most colorful picture to your own imaginations.



Book Your Ticket

Why should I be the only one having fun? Go here and donate if you want to make sure that kids have the books they need. You have no idea how good it'll make you feel!

Speaking of books, if you read as much as I do, you might find this to be a very good value. I know I'm going to give it a whirl!

(A tip of the cap to my Blogdaddy.)

From the Rowdies in the Back of the Bus

And I do mean ROWDIES.

(A tip of the cap to that little rabble-rouser Mog. Thanks. I needed that laugh today.)

This is from Elizabeth:

What follows is a real application from a prospective student at a university.
His application was apparently successful.

In order for the admissions staff of our university to get to know you, the applicant, better, we ask that you answer the following questions:

Q: Are there any significant experiences you have had, or accomplishments you have realized, that have helped to define you as a person?

A: I am a dynamic figure, often seen scaling walls and crushing ice. I have been known to remodel train stations on my lunch breaks, making them efficient in the area of heat retention. I translate ethnic slurs for Kenyan refugees, I write award-winning operas, and manage time efficiently. Occasionally, I tread water for three days in a row. I woo women with my sensuous and godlike trombone playing, I can pilot bicycles up severe inclines with unflagging speed, and I cook thirty-minute brownies in twenty minutes.

I am an expert in stucco, a veteran in love, and an outlaw in Peru. Using only a hoe and a large glass of water, I single-handedly defended a small village in the Amazon Basin from a horde of ferocious army ants. I play bluegrass cello, I had trails with Manchester United, I am the subject of numerous documentaries.

When I'm bored, I build large suspension bridges in my garden. I enjoy urban hang -gliding. On Wednesdays, after school, I repair electrical appliances free of charge. I am an abstract artist, a concrete analyst, and a ruthless bookie.

Critics world-wide swoon over my original line of corduroy evening wear. I don't perspire. I am a private citizen, yet I receive fan mail. I have appeared on Through The Keyhole and won the gold plaque. Last summer I toured Eastern Europe with a travelling centrifugal-force demonstration. I run the l00m in 9.65 secs.

My deft floral arrangements have earned me fame in international botany circles. Children trust me. I can hurl tennis rackets at small moving objects with deadly accuracy. I once read Paradise Lost, Moby Dick, and David Copperfield in one day and still had time to refurbish an entire dining-room that evening.

I know the exact location of every food item in the supermarket. I have performed several covert operation for the CIA. I sleep once a week; when I do sleep, I sleep in a chair. While on vacation in Canada, I successfully negotiated with a group of terrorist who had seized a small bakery.

The laws of physics do not apply to me. I balance, I weave, I dodge, I frolic, and my bills are all paid. On weekends, to let off steam, I participate in full-contact origami.

Years ago I discovered the meaning of life but forgot to write it down. I have made extraordinary four-course meals using only some vegetables and a toaster.

I breed prize-winning clams. I have won bullfights in Madrid, cliff-diving competitions in Sri Lanka, and chess competitions at the Kremlin. I have played Hamlet, I have performed open-heart surgery, and I have spoken with Elvis.

But I have not yet gone to this University.

The Sweetheart of Shell Knob, MO sends this:


After their 11th child, an Alabama couple decided that was enough as they could not afford a larger bed. So the husband went to his veterinarian and told him that he and his cousin didn't want to have anymore children. The doctor told him that there was a procedure called a vasectomy that could fix the problem but that it was expensive. "A less costly alternative," said the doctor, "is to go home, get a cherry bomb, (fireworks are legal in Alabama) light it, put it in a beer can, then hold the can up to your ear and count to 10."

The Alabamian said to the doctor, "I may not be the smartest tool in the shed, but I don't see how putting a cherry bomb in a beer can next to my ear is going to help me."

"Trust me," said the doctor.

So the man went home, lit a cherry bomb and put it in a beer can. He held the can up to his ear and began to count...






At which point he paused, placed the beer can between his legs and resumed counting on his other hand.

(This procedure also works in Tennessee, Kentucky, Arkansas, Mississippi, Missouri, West Virginia and Washington DC)

If It's Not One Thing...

... it's your mother.

To quote Charlie Brown -- "Rats."

It seems my mom isn't doing as well as the doctors had hoped by now. She's still not eating right, losing weight, her red and white blood counts are low and they've put her on IV fluids. Cripes. The cure is almost worse than the cancer itself. Almost being the operative word.

I bought another plane ticket today. I'll be flying down to Florida Monday morning, returning on the 30th. My sister will take over from there. We hope to get her packed up and back here by the end of the first week in June, as it's much easier to keep an eye on her that way.

Anybody want some keys to the Omnibus while I'm gone? I could use a good driver.

See? I'm not the only one feeling it. Say a little prayer for Flax and her family, too.


Ouch! (Don't try this at home.)

I can't believe this case made it court in the first place -- let alone to a court of appeals. The mind boggles.

Bus Fumes

I can totally understand why this jerk was both arrested and suspended. I do NOT understand this, however. Cripes! On the one hand, school administrators did something reasonable after ample warning. On the other hand, they went way over the top. A verbal warning would have been more than sufficient. Gah!

(A tip of the cap to Tim.)

From the Rowdies in the Back of the Bus

Denny spins a pun as bad as the old saw about Ghandi. Sheesh.

My Blogdaddy is a sadist. Why? Because he sends me stuff like this.

Elizabeth sends Deep Thoughts for Deep Thinkers:

I planted some bird seed. A bird came up. Now I don't know what to feed it.

I had amnesia once -- or twice.

I went to San Francisco. I found someone's heart. Now what?

Protons have mass? I didn't even know they were Catholic.

All I ask is a chance to prove that money can't make me happy.

They told me I was gullible ... and I believed them.

Teach a child to be polite and courteous in the home and, when he grows up, he'll never be able to merge his car onto a freeway.

Two can live as cheaply as one, for half as long.

Experience is the thing you have left when everything else is gone.

What if there were no hypothetical questions?

One nice thing about egotists: They don't talk about other people.

When the only tool you own is a hammer, every problem begins to look like a nail.

My weight is perfect for my height -- which varies.

I used to be indecisive. Now I'm not sure.

The cost of living hasn't affected its popularity.

Is there another word for synonym?

Where do forest rangers go to "get away from it all"?

Is it possible to be totally partial?

What's another word for thesaurus?

Is Marx's tomb a communist plot?

If swimming is so good for your figure, how do you explain whales?

Book Your Ticket

Why would anyone want to write teen books? Well maybe it's because teens get really excited if you write books about things they care passionately about. I'm obviously all for anything that gets kids reading.

Keep on writing what you want to write, Ms. Mechling.

(A tip of the cap to Dr. Frank.)

Speaking of teens and books, on Friday Ms. Kapp wrote to tell me:
"Yes, we are recieving books as they come in. It looks like most of block two has arrived and a few from block one. We are going to be making our journals today that we will be sending you!

"The kids are so excited about this. Some are still wondering if they have to return then when they are done!"
Nope. These are their books to keep. I'm beginning to feel like Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny and the Tooth Fairy all rolled into one.

I got another note from Ms. Kapps today letting me know that all but two of the books have arrived:

"The kids were so excited to take them home. We created our journal covers on Friday and I am giving them until the second week of June to finish the books and turn in their journals. Some kids asked if they could finish over the weekend! I said of course!!!"


I try not to post when I'm in a bad mood or the news of the day is really getting to me. That's why posting has been light the last few days.

I'm sending out prayers to: Mamamontezz for a humane insurance examiner, Kelley for an outstanding job interview and this gal, just because I feel like throwing her a big 'ole hug.

I'm sending out thanks to Trevor for reminding me: 1) what's really important in life; and, 2) to check my badditude at the door. Also to Michele and Steve, for making me laugh so hard. (I really, really needed that.)

Back later, after I stuff the evil twin genie back in its bottle. Sheesh.

One quick thing -- best quote of the day?

When I saw the ad showing Darth Vader face to face with that creepy, plastic-faced Burger King creature, it was official: George Lucas is the biggest merchandising whore in movie history.

"Revenge of the Sith"? How about rearranging the letters on the last word of that title to describe all the "Star Wars" stuff Lucas and Co. are selling.

Richard Roeper rocks.



Tootin' the Horn

This is the best bit of writing I've seen in quite a while. If you can read the entire thing with a straight face, you're a better man than I, Gunga Din.

(A tip of the cap to Michael J. Totten.)


After all the ballyhoo, Ariana goes kerplunk. Heh.

OMG. It's deja vu all over again.

The Mom Update

It's a good news/so-so news day.

The good news? Today was Mom's last radiation treatment. (Yahoo!)

The so-so news? She has zero energy, and feels like the poster child for this new Carnival.

Ah, well. The nurse's aid at the radiology clinic told her that in six weeks she'll feel like a completely different person.

It's about damn time.

From the Rowdies in the Back of the Bus

Nancy V. sends these "Toddler Property Laws":

1. If I like it, it's mine.
2. If it's in my hand, it's mine.
3. If I can take it from you, it's mine.
4. If I had it a little while ago, it's mine.
5. If it's mine, it must never appear to be your's in anyway.
6. If I'm doing or building something, all of the pieces are mine.
7. If it looks just like mine, it's mine.
8. If I think it's mine, it's mine.

Hmmmmm.... I think I know of few people above ankle-biting age who still think these are the rules...

Marian sends a few fashion tips for those of us at an age, well...

Many of us "Older Folks" (those over 40, WAY over 40 or hovering near 40) might be a bit confused about how we should present ourselves. We're unsure about the kind of image we are projecting and whether or not we are correct as we try to conform to current fashions. Despite what you may have seen on the streets, the following combinations DO NOT go together and should be avoided:

1. A nose ring and bifocals
2. Spiked hair and bald spots
3. A pierced tongue and dentures
4. Miniskirts and support hose
5. Ankle bracelets and corn pads
6. Speedo's and cellulite
7. A belly button ring and a gall bladder surgery scar
8. Unbuttoned disco shirts and a heart monitor
9. Midriff shirts and a midriff bulge
10. Bikinis and liver spots
11. Short shorts and varicose veins
12. Inline skates and a walker

And last, but not least . . .

13. Thongs and Depends

Bus Fumes

Any self-respecting wine-lover should be boycotting this shite designer wine lite trend. (To parody the old Miller Lite ads: "More condescending! Less intoxicating!")


Drape your monitor in Saran Wrap before reading the best one-liner of the day.

Was that Rob doing the "I told you so" dance on the front porch of the cracker box? (A tip of the cap to Spoons.)

Where your tuition dollars are going. Their mothers would be so proud! (A tip of the cap to Eric.)

Groundhog Day

"We regret to inform you that our supplier has changed the release date on the pre-ordered merchandise listed below. We hope to fulfill your order soon. To keep your order open, we must have your approval for a 30-Day Order Extension. If you do not approve an extension, this part of your order will be canceled in 24 hours.

"Please accept our sincere apologies for the delay.

"-- Barnes & Noble.com

"This part of your order has been delayed:


"1 Zimmerguide to George R. R. Martin's a Feast for Crows: A Personal, Unofficial, Opinionated Guide to the Long-Awaited Fourth Novel in a Song of Ice and Fire ISBN:0975447920"