Let’s do the twist!

April 17, 1998

I’m afraid this week’s edition was delayed by an unexpected visitor in the area: a tornado. Tornadoes are large swirling masses of wind that leave a path of destruction wherever they go. They don’t, however, drink beer, which is the one thing that distinguishes them from my Uncle Philip. The tornado made several surprise appearances and was greeted by many friendly people who went to get a better look at it while those of us who belong in the gene pool were diving for the nearest basement. The local news missed their chance to interview the tornado, but they did show the same picture of a car buried under a pile of bricks thirty times (in case the original owner was wondering where he’d parked), and had contests to see who could use the word "tornadic" the most times without laughing. Finally a panel of experts came on to wrap things up, to analyze the number of touchdowns and discuss ways the Tennessee Tornadoes could score more on their return visit, plans for computer games, T-shirts, movies, and a discussion of the difficulties in getting a tornado to sign a contract. It all took me back to my grade school days when, with thirty other children, I was marched into a pre-fabricated building on concrete blocks and shown a film of the damage tornadoes do to trailer parks. It was a lot like getting on a plane and being shown "The World’s Worst Airline Disasters" at 15,000 feet.

Enjoy this week’s offerings.

35 signs you might be a Yankee

  • You think barbecue is a verb meaning "to cook outside."

  • You think Heinz Ketchup is SPICY.

  • You don’t have any problems pronouncing "Worcestershire sauce" correctly.

  • For breakfast, you would prefer potatoes au gratin to grits.

  • You don’t know what a moon pie is.

  • You’ve never had grain alcohol.

  • You’ve never, ever, eaten Okra.

  • You eat fried chicken with a knife and fork.

  • You’ve never seen a live chicken, and the only cows you’ve seen are on road trips.

  • You have no idea what a polecat is.

  • Whenever someone tells an off-color joke about farm animals, it goes over your head.

  • You don’t see anything wrong with putting a sweater on a poodle.

  • You don’t have bangs.

  • You would rather vacation at Martha’s Vineyard than Six Flags.

  • More than two generations of your family have been kicked out of the same prep school in Connecticut.

  • You would rather have your son become a lawyer than grow up to get his own TV fishing show.

  • Instead of referring to two or more people as "y’all," you call them "you guys," even if both of them are women.

  • You don’t think Howard Stern has an accent.

  • You have never planned your summer vacation around a gun-and-knife show.

  • You think more money should go to important scientific research at your university than to pay the salary of the head football coach.

  • You don’t have at least one can of WD-40 somewhere around the house.

  • The last time you smiled was when you prevented someone from getting on an on-ramp on the highway.

  • You don’t have any hats in your closet that advertise feed stores.

  • The farthest south you’ve ever been is the perfume counter at Neiman Marcus.

  • You call binoculars opera glasses.

  • You can’t spit out the car window without pulling over to the side of the road and stopping.

  • You would never wear pink or an applique sweatshirt.

  • You don’t know what applique is.

  • Most of your formative high school sexual experiences took place within the context of a football game.

  • You don’t know anyone with two first names (i.e. Joe Bob, Billy Bob, Jim Bob, Kay Bob, Bob Bob, Plumb Bob)

  • You don’t have doilies, and you certainly don’t know how to make one.

  • You’ve never been to a craft show.

  • You get freaked out when people on the subway talk to you.

  • You can’t do your laundry without quarters.

  • None of your fur coats are homemade.

Facts of Life

  1. The 2 most common elements in the universe are hydrogen and stupidity.

  2. If at first you don’t succeed, skydiving is not for you.

  3. Money can’t buy happiness… But it sure makes misery easier to live with.

  4. Deja Moo: The feeling that you’ve heard this bull before.

  5. Psychiatrists say that 1 of 4 people are mentally ill. If you have 3 friends who are OK, then you’re it.

  6. Nothing in the known universe travels faster than a bad check.

  7. It has recently been discovered that research causes cancer in rats.

  8. The trouble with doing something right the first time is that nobody appreciates how difficult it was.

  9. It may be that your sole purpose in life is simply to serve as a warning to others.

  10. The average woman would rather have beauty than brains, because the average man can see better than he can think.

  11. Clothes make the man. Naked people have little or no influence on society. (But: "Wearing the right thing only takes money. Wearing the wrong thing takes initiative."–Ben Elton)

  12. Vital papers will demonstrate their vitality by moving from where you left them to where you can’t find them.

  13. Law of Probability Dispersal: Whatever it is that hits the fan will not be evenly distributed.

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