Quick Takes.

Inter-office Memos: National Poetry Month Edition.

Because I could not stop for work—

They sent it to my room—

No one could tell I had no pants—

Because we met in Zoom—

–E. Dickinson & Associates, Amherst

From: elsa.hildegard@ passaicgen.com

To: All Staff

Subject: Plums!!!

I left a bag of plums in the break room refrigerator. Someone ate them even though the bag was clearly marked with my name on it. They were there for after my morning run. THIS WILL NOT BE TOLERATED. Show some respect, people. I don’t want to place blame unfairly but I think whoever did it left their red wheelbarrow out next to the chickens.

From: bill.c.williams@ passaicgen.com

To: elsa.hildegard@ passaicgen.com

Subject: RE: Plums!!!

This is just to say

I’m sorry. I have eaten the plums

That you were probably saving for breakfast.

Forgive me. They were delicious,

And I thought they were like the Girl Scout cookies

You brought last week.

From: elsa.hildegard@ passaicgen.com

To: elsa.hildegard@ passaicgen.com

Subject: RE: Plums!!!

Okay, Bill, I forgive you, but seriously learn to indent.

 

From D. Thomas, in the cubicle next to yours:

A Refusal To Mourn Your Departure From The Office

 

Do not go gentle into retirement,

It’s still too soon for your 401(k).

Now, now, go tell the boss he should get bent.

 

Your final e-mail has been typed and sent,

You’ve had a cake, and it’s the end of day.

Do not go gentle into retirement,

Now, now, go tell the boss he should get bent.

Coming Up:

Charles Dodgson, L.C., offers advice on wooing celebrity investors in “The Hunting Of The Shark”

Elizabeth Bishop’s instructions on dealing with corporate bankruptcy with “The Art Of Losing”

Walt Whitman contains multitudes, because he’s offering sweet deals on office space.

Ten Things Only I Think Are Funny, With Unnecessary Explanations, Annotations, And Footnotes.

Source: fromoldbooks.org

I have a rare album: Rex Harrison[1] Sings Billy Idol[2].

Explanation: There’s at least one other person who finds this funny, although I texted this to him one night with no other explanation after I’d had a couple of beers and, since it was a Friday night, I’m sure he’d had a few too and at that point just about anything is funny, and I still kind of wonder why I didn’t say I had an album of Brian Blessed singing Cyndi Lauper which, let’s face it, would have been almost as funny.

Annotation: Rex Harrison was hopeless as a singer but regularly cast in musicals, most famously the 1967 film version of Doctor Dolittle. He developed a style of “speech singing”, essentially talking his way through songs. Billy Idol, on the other hand,  has both a broad vocal range and a much cooler haircut.

Medieval European polearms [3]

Explanation: This one is a you-had-to-be-there kind of joke although I bet there are a lot of historians who get why this is funny. There are literally dozens of different designs for what’s basically a blade and some pointy things on the end of a stick, each with their own specific name and it just makes me laugh to imagine a knight saying to his squire, “Hey, I asked for a bec de corbin and you brought me a ranseur!”

I put a quarter in a Wurlitzer[4] and pita bread stuffed with thin-sliced roasted and seasoned lamb[5] popped out.

Explanation: This came to me one night when I was on my way to get some Greek takeout food and I was kind of embarrassed because I couldn’t tell the guy behind the counter why I was laughing so hard without sounding like a lunatic.

Annotation: Foreigner’s album 4, first released in 1981, has proven to be one of their longest lasting, with the second track, an ode to a young boy who is unable to buy a concert ticket but, hearing a guitar, becomes a musician himself, is considered by critics to be the best song in their entire catalog.

Aardvarks[6].

Explanation: I was watching a nature documentary and an aardvark came on and started digging into a termite mound and I couldn’t stop laughing because I’d never realized before that they’re basically giant long-tailed pigs with bunny ears.

Annotation: Aardvarks share a common ancestor with elephants, manatees, and hyraxes, none of which any rational person finds funny.

Hansel and Gretel[7] kill their parents.

Explanation: This is a bit dark but my lifelong love of fairy tales has prompted me to write alternate versions of several, including Hansel and Gretel, and I think it would be weirdly funny is the kids figured out their parents were planning to abandon them and took matters into their own hands and maybe got adopted by the witch.

Cans of mixed nuts.

Explanation: It’s not so much the nuts as the conversations I imagine them having. Hazelnuts[8] would call each other “Phil” and “Bert”, pecans[9] would speak with a Southern accent, and Brazil nuts[10] would speak German.

Annotation: Most commercially available nut mixes also include peanuts, almonds, and cashews, none of which are funny.

Excel spreadsheets[11].

Explanation: Actually not funny at all, not even to me, and I think I’ve established that I’ve got a really weird sense of humor, but at this point I’m just trying to pad out the list.

Annotation: In high school I knew guys taking computer classes who’d get really excited about making spreadsheets. This was the ‘80’s and it just goes to show how much of a novelty computers were that something accounting-related could actually seem exciting.

Padding lists[12]

Explanation: It’s always funny to me when someone throws something weird and seemingly random into a list.

The word “swab”

Explanation: There are plenty of weird words that just sound funny to me but “swab” is my go-to when someone asks for an example. Maybe it’s because I think of pirates swabbing the decks but it could just as easily be because cotton swabs tickle the insides of my ears.

Annotation: The origins of the word “swab” date to at least the mid-17th century when it originally meant a mop made of rope yarn, ultimately derived from the Swedish “svabba”, meaning “a dirty person”, and why the Swedish needed a specific word for a dirty person is a mystery.

Ridiculously long titles.

Explanation: None needed.

Annotation: See above.

Footnotes follow.

1-An English stage and screen actor (b.1908-d.1990)

2-An English musician, singer, and songwriter (b.1955, d. probably several times because, you know, rock stars)

3-A weapon consisting of a blade attached to a long wooden staff

4-A brand name of jukebox.

5-A sandwich commonly known as a “gyro”, sold as Greek or Middle Eastern cuisine.

6-Scientific name Orycteropus afer, an insectivorous mammal whose range extends across much of Africa.

7-The child protagonists of a German fairy tale of medieval origin first published by the Brothers Grimm in 1812.

8-Nuts produced by the hazel tree (scientific name Corylus avellana), hazelnuts are also known as “filberts” and now we’re just over-explaining the joke.

9-Nuts produced by a subspecies of hickory (scientific name Carya illinoinensis)

10-Not technically a nut but rather a seed from a South American tree (scientific name Bertholletia excelsa)

11-A computer application used for storing, sorting, organizing, and analyzing data in the form of a table.

12-Made you look.

 

What It Was Was Fantasy Football: 2021 Edition.

Source: qwantz.com. Awesome fun times!

Defending Team

Safety- Tyrann Mathieu

Safety- Daniel Sorensen

Cornerback- BoPete Keyes

Cornerback-Rashad Fenton

Outside Linebacker-Anthony Hitchens

Outside Linebacker-Darius Harris

Middle Linebacker- Lavonte David

End- Ndamukong Suh

End- Tanoh Kpassagnon

Tackle- Rakeem Nunez-Roches

Tackle- Donovan Smith

Wide Receiver-Mecole Hardman

Wide Receiver- Tyreek Hill

Tackle- Khalen Saunders

Tackle- Derrick Nnadi

Guard- Ali Marpet

Guard- Andrew Wylie

Center- Ryan Jensen

Tight End- Travis Kelce

Quarterback- Patrick Mahomes

Fullback- Damien Wilson

Halfback- Charvarius Ward

Receiving Team

Safety-Egg Shen

Safety-King Meshugah

Cornerback-Garet Jax

Cornerback-Dejah Thoris

Outside Linebacker-Thorin Oakenshield

Outside Linebacker-Yog Sothoth

Middle Linebacker-Sandman

End-Ningauble Of The Seven Eyes

End-Rincewind (filling in for Falkor, currently out with COVID-19)

Tackle-Sir Gawain

Tackle-Mongo

Wide Receiver-Namor Of Atlantis

Wide Receiver-Jareth (reserve for Baron Munchausen)

Tackle-Hellboy

Tackle-Xena, Warrior Princess

Guard-Anita Blake

Guard-The Red Queen

Center-Lessa/Ramoth

Tight End-Lord Voldemort

Quarterback- Schmendrick The Magician

 Fullback-Eeyore

Halfback-Rudy Ruettiger

 

 

All About Meme.

Sometimes art critics have to clarify and even defend the importance of a work of art, to explain its cultural relevance. Not every work of art is understood or appreciated in its time but most had at least one defender who wasn’t the artist who tried to get the work the attention it deserved. And sometimes they just have to say, HEY, NOT MUCH I CAN SAY BUT THIS THING IS AWESOME AND YOU REALLY SHOULD LOOK AT IT.

So anyway here are some memes created by the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission and archived by the Library of Congress and you really should look at them because they’re awesome and also your safety might depend on it.

And you may notice the Library of Congress website has regular technical difficulties which would normally be annoying but somehow they managed to make that funny too.

All Together Now.

An Irish pub in Spain is banning the classic singalong song “Sweet Caroline” by Neil Diamond to keep its patrons safer…A photo posted by the pub’s owner Linda Carroll showed the sign explaining the decision: “Due to COVID-19 ‘Sweet Caroline’ is banned. There will be no: touching hands, reaching out, touching me, touching you.”

-delish.com, August 4, 2020

COVID-19 Karaoke Playlist:

Human Touch (Bruce Springsteen)-NO

Invisible Touch (Genesis)-NO

Sometimes When We Touch (Dan Hill)-NO

I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry (Hank Williams)-YES

Touch And Go (The Cars)-NO

Just A Touch (R.E.M.)-NO

Alone (Heart)-YES

Always On My Mind (Willie Nelson/Pet Shop Boys)-YES

Touch Me In The Morning (Diana Ross)-NO

Stand Back (Stevie Nicks)-YES

You Touch My Heart (Phil Collins)-NO

Might As Well Be On Mars (Alice Cooper)-YES

Out Of Touch (Hall And Oates)-YES

Stay Away (Nirvana)-YES

Lean On Me (Bill Withers)-NO

Miss Your Touch (Cassie Ventura)-YES

Can’t Touch This (MC Hammer)-YES

I Want To Hold Your Hand (The Beatles)-NO

Touch Too Much (AC/DC)-NO

Get Down On It (Kool And The Gang)-NO

Black Dog (Led Zeppelin)-NO

I Ran (Flock Of Seagulls)-YES

With Or Without You (U2)-NO. Or YES.

Hold Her In Your Hand (The Bee Gees)-NO

Behind Blue Eyes (The Who)-YES

Don’t Stand So Close To Me (The Police)-YES. WHY ISN’T THIS AT THE TOP OF OUR LIST?

Gimme Some Money (Spinal Tap)-NO

Don’t Come Around Here No More (Tom Petty And The Heartbreakers)-YES

Isolation (John Lennon)-YES

I Drink Alone (George Thorogood And The Destroyers)-YES

Dancing With Myself (Billy Idol)-YES

Gimme Shelter (The Rolling Stones)-NO

Piano Man (Billy Joel)-ONLY IF THE BAR IS AT 25% CAPACITY

I Am A Rock (Simon And Garfunkel)-YES

Lola (The Kinks)-NO

One More Minute (Weird Al Yankovic)-YES

Afternoon Delight (Starland Vocal Band)-NO

Green Onions (Booker T & The MGs)-UH HOW DO YOU SING THAT?

Keep Your Hands To Yourself (The Georgia Satellites)-YES

All By Myself (Eric Carmen)-YES, SERIOUSLY THIS SHOULD BE AT THE TOP OF OUR LIST.

Sunday Morning Coming Down (Johnny Cash)-YES

I Think We’re Alone Now (Tiffany)-MAYBE

Roam (The B-52’s)-NO

Let’s Stay Together (Al Green)-NO

Addicted To Love (Robert Palmer)-NO

The French Inhaler (Warren Zevon)-WHAT DO YOU THINK?

Somebody To Love (Queen)-NO

I Touch Myself (The Divinyls)-YES

Close To You (The Carpenters)-NO

So Far Away (Carole King)-YES

Stand By Me (Ben E. King)-YES IF YOU KEEP SIX FEET AWAY

Sharp Dressed Man (ZZ Top)-WHY IS HE NOT WEARING PANTS?

You Are Not Alone (The Eagles)-NO

In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida-NO ONE KNOWS WHAT IT’S ABOUT AND IT FRIGHTENS CHILDREN SO YES.

The Parting Glass (Traditional)-I DON’T KNOW, MAYBE?

Hello Muddah, Hello Faddah (Allan Sherman)-NOW YOU’RE JUST MESSING WITH ME.

There’s A Word For It.

Source: From Old Books

Schadenfreude (German)-Taking pleasure in the misery of others.

Pochemuchka (Russian)-A highly inquisitive person

Tsundoku (Japanese)-The practice of purchasing books you will probably never read, allowing them to pile up

Desvelado (Spanish)-Being deprived of sleep

Çrregullt (Albanian)-The guilt that comes when someone asks you what seems like a stupid question but when you try to answer it you realize it’s really pretty complicated

Hendelseshorisont (Norwegian)-When you become old enough to realize that most of the original Star Trek episodes were really terrible

Tàirneanaich (Scottish)-When you’ve been inside all day and you finally get a break and step out for some fresh air and it immediately starts raining

Oorworm (Dutch)-The frustration that comes from having a song stuck in your head but you can’t really remember the words

Jageugje (Korean)-Annoyance with yourself when you’ve been handling spicy food with your fingers and then you rub your eyes

Vad är det här (Swedish)-When you’re looking through your desk drawer for something and you find a bag of leftover pieces of furniture you put together

Yangın işareti (Turkish)-The motions you go through when someone asks to see your passport which you’re sure you had just a minute ago

Orologio da abbuffata (Italian)-The certainty when you’ve been binge watching a TV show that you must have skipped something because there’s no way you’re already halfway through season five

Mehukas juoru (Finnish)-The realization when you’re halfway through sharing some gossip that it’s about the person you’re talking to

Qese Çaji (Albanian)-When you’re on your way somewhere and you have to turn around and go home because you’re certain you left something on the stove

Jen vtip (Czech)-The desire to punch someone who insists on dropping foreign phrases into conversation

Urmărindofurtună (Romanian)-Surprise when watching a weather report on the news that there’s a town with a funny name you’ve never heard of before that’s actually pretty near where you live, and you start thinking, “Maybe I should visit Bugtussle.”

Ințepătură de Cornet (Romanian)-Small town in the region of Transylvania whose name roughly translates as “Bugtussle”

No Duds Here.

Fourth of July celebrations around the United States usually mean dazzling displays of pyrotechnics, but with social distancing and people limiting their movement many may stay inside and binge watch so it’s time for a pop quiz!

Fireworks or Buddy Cop film?

1. Hot Fuzz
2. Point Break
3. Bad Boys
4. Turner And Hooch
5. Tuggy Huggy
6. A Gnome Named Gnorm
7. Big Explosion
8. Three Minute Blaze Of Glory
9. Lethal Weapon
10. Stop! Or My Mom Will Shoot!
11. Furious Flamingo
12. Terms Of Endearment
13. Sixteen Blocks
14. Emoji Spinners
15. Ground Bloom Flower Brick
16. Men In Black
17. Buffy The Vampire Slayer
18. Dragnet
19. Penguin Mama
20. The Glimmer Man
21. Croc Rock
22. Midnight Run
23. Killer Chihuahua
24. Osmosis Jones
25. Donkey Balls

Scoring:
More than 20–You’re a Hollywood special effects technician with a business card that says “I blow shit up for a living.” You burned down your high school.

15-20–For reasons only you can explain you double majored in film studies and chemistry and still have most of your fingers. You burned down your parents’ garage.

10-14–You like movies and always find the best parking spot for your local Fourth Of July celebration. You’re in charge of the fire when camping.

5-9–You watch your local Fourth Of July celebration on the morning news on the fifth of July. You burn yourself on the stove every time you cook.

1-4–Soup commercials make you cry and you once burned yourself with a glow stick.

All fireworks are currently commercially available and trademarked by their respective manufacturers.

 

They’re Everywhere.

Every time a bell rings an angel gets its wings.

Every time paper is torn another sprite is being born.

Every time a ship lifts its sail a mermaid grows another tail.

Every time you go downstairs the attic demons come out in pairs.

Every time you use a microwave fairies get together and hold a rave.

Every time a tree is cut a dryad falls on its butt.

Every time a car starts and ogre squats and farts.

Every time there’s a gentle breeze a centaur just had to sneeze.

Every time you spill some salt a jinn sneaks inside a bank vault.

Every time the kettle whistles unicorns mail out epistles.

Every time the air conditioning goes off a dragon gives its skin a slough.

Every time a plug goes into a socket a nixie adds to its docket.

Every time someone scrapes their nails on a chalkboard another hobgoblin joins the horde.

Every time a door is closed a gryphon is indisposed.

Every time someone fries up bacon somewhere a kobold is shakin’.

Every time a soda fizzes a gremlin drops its pants and whizzes.

 

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