“Perfect In Every Way”

We hear these politicians whining “Obama’s trying to change America.” Tell us then, would this suggest America is already perfect in every way? If there’s any room for improvement however small, do they have a proposal for that? If they do, isn’t that ‘trying to change America?” More to the point, isn’t this why we elect them in the first place – to do their jobs?

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A Boy Named Hoshi

As told by a friend. Original source unknown.

There was a high school teacher who, every day before class started, would repeat some famous quote from American history. Whichever student could identify the source got extra credit.  One day, the teacher said, “Four-score and seven years ago…”

No one in the class reacted.  Then, a little Japanese boy, the son of immigrants, raised his hand, “Abraham Lincoln, Gettysburg Pennsylvania, 1864.”

The teacher said, That’s right, Hoshi, but then she looked back through her records and saw that Hoshi had answered most of the questions for quite some time.  So, she decided to give the rest of the class a try with a second quote, “I have a dream…”

Nobody reacted.  Finally, in frustration the teacher asked, “Do you know, Hoshi?”

He replied, “Martin Luther King Jr. Washington DC, 1963.”

The teacher said, “That’s right.  The rest of you should be ashamed of yourself that a Japanese kid who is new to the US should know more American history than you do!”

A smartass in the back yelled, “Fuck the Japanese!”

Hoshi replied, “Lee Iacocca, Detroit Michigan, 1981.”

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Retired Old Folks Union (ROFU)

It is important to take days off. We owe it to ourselves. In fact, it is an important duty and function of the Retired Old Folks Union (ROFU) Rules. When a friend is considering working on a given day, it is our civic duty as Members to talk our friend out of it. Anybody can work (well, almost), but it takes experience and talent to become truly proficient in the art of relaxation. Low Work Motivation (LWM) is essential. We have a fund to send High Motivation individuals to special deprogramming rehabilitation farms, where we’ve planted special varieties of wild grasses for watching, owing to their slow growth rates.

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“You know who you are”

From BBC: “In Sonning Common, near Reading, in 2003, an unidentified motorist – you know who you are – collided with and knocked down the sign reading, Sonning Common welcomes careful drivers.”

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The Quiltin’ Ladies

OK, all you young ladies of all ages out there, I’m gonna admit I watched a whole Quilting crafts show today. I wasn’t gonna watch the painting show that come before it neither, but, turned out I din’t know you could do all that stuff with watercolors. Then the Quiltin’ Ladies came on and they said “Hi, today we’re going to show you how to select and piece together parts for a geese pattern,” and I said, “Oh NO ladies, no you ain’t!” and I reached for my switcher thingie.

Just then they showed us how they sew together little pieces I couldn’t even see with a microscope, if I could get my fat fingers outta the way, I mean. There’s as much to this quiltin’ business as makin’ fine furniture in a cabinet shop. Not that you’ll ever catch me quiltin’ before I figure out how to sew a button on straight. Hats off to you gals for keepin’ such a finely guarded secret, ’cause it truly is rocket science to me!

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Piers Morgan Deportation Petition

As most of you’d have read by now, there’s a small movement promoting a petition at whitehouse.gov to punish CNN commentator Piers Morgan for his caustic comments against the NRA’s Wayne LaPierre in wake of the awful Sandy Hook tragedy. They’re petitioning to deport Morgan, a British citizen, despite the fact that in the United States we have not only a Second Amendment, but the First. I posted my somewhat tongue in cheek quip below to the Huffington Post:

How about deporting Wayne LaPierre to the Congo where he could lead his child soldiers in the glorious revolution against brains?”

But I was bested by another reader:

Has not the Congo suffered enough?”

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Showing Him The Door

When Cambridge finally demolished their pioneering Computer Technology Lab, to make room for a new one, a heritage site where one of the world’s first electronic computers was designed and built was literally and unceremoniously dumped on the scrap heap. One of the researchers rescued a door from the heap, painted in an old green enamel, because it was the only green door in the old lab, and had therefore once been attached to the office of Sir Maurice Wilkes, Cambridge’s legendary pioneer of computing.

As told by David Hartley to the San Jose Computer History Museum in a May 11, 2011 interview, when Sir Maurice finally retired, they hauled the rescued green door out of the basement, affixed a brass plaque to it, and presented it to Wilkes as part of his retirement ceremony. But he wasn’t allowed to take the door home. So then, what did they do with it?

Hartley said, from that day on, whenever a distinguished colleague and pioneer would retire, “we would put another brass plaque on the green door, give him a nice speech, and show him the door.”

— for more information about Sir Maurice Wilkes and the interview with Hartley, see http://www.computerhistory.org/events/past/#sir-maurice-wilkes-man-his

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Where to Retire

  • You can retire in Phoenix … because you can drive for 4 hours in one direction and never leave town.
  • You can retire to California … because you make over $250,000 and you still can’t afford to buy a house.

Look for “Where to Retire,” our expanded list of retirement locations, in HUMOR.

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Pink Slime

No matter how medically safe “pink slime” may be, it’s disgusting. The consumer, not the meat processor plant, must be the final judge of what’s food and what’s chemically processed byproduct. The fact that “pink slime” has been quietly pushed to market without prominent WARNING! notices is even more disgusting.

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Ig Nobel Prize Awards 2011

You can find the announcements almost anywhere. I used Scientific American and Reuters.

Surely you follow the annual Ig Nobel awards? No? According to Wikipedia,

The Ig Nobel Prizes are an American parody of the Nobel Prizes and are given each year in early October for ten unusual or trivial achievements in scientific research. The stated aim of the prizes is to “first make people laugh, and then make them think”. Organized by the scientific humor magazine Annals of Improbable Research (AIR), they are presented by a group that includes Nobel Laureates at a ceremony at Harvard University’s Sanders Theater, and they are followed by a set of public lectures by the winners at MIT.

My personal favorite award for 2011:

— Americans Dorothy Martin who predicted the world would end in 1954; Pat Robertson who predicted the world would end in 1982; Elizabeth Clare Prophet who predicted the world would end in 1990; and Harold Camping who predicted the world would end on September 6, 1994, and on October 21, 2011; Lee Jang Rim of Korea who predicted the world would end in 1992; Shoko Asahara of Japan who predicted the world would end in 1997; Credonia Mwerinde of Uganda who predicted the world would end in 1999 — for teaching the world to be careful when making mathematical assumptions and calculations.

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