Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Wednesday Wa Pic - And don't even get me started on "F"

 Because there is nothing more aggravating than sitting in church and having to listen to a lot of e.

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Just another unsolvable mystery of life

It all started, as so many things do, with junk from under the passenger seat. Not ancient French fries. No. On the way to school last week, my son reaches under there and comes up with an empty kiwi-strawberry Snapple bottle. 

"Whose was this?" he asks. I have no idea. I haven't had a Snapple since 50-pounds-of-Bill-Clinton ago. 

That night I ask my wife, "Hey, did you have a Snapple when you drove my car last? Or did Laurie have one?" 

"We went in Laurie's car that day," she says. "Besides, I haven't had a Snapple since they tore that Saddam statue down." 

I text my daughter at college. She's home once a month or so. "I can't remember when I last had Snapple. Especially kiwi-strawberry," she replies. (She's a boba connoisseur.)

I rack my brain about who's been in my car. I email my friend Dave. "Yo, that day we went out geocaching, did you drink a Snapple?"

"I did not," he writes back, almost defiantly, because he only rolls with Gatorade. 

Turns out nobody drank a Snapple in my car. I might guess that nobody wants to confess to leaving trash under my seat, but that makes no sense, since they know I'm the first to leave trash under my seat, at least if the seat's already piled high. 

I flash back two decades. I came out one morning to find my car door ajar and a huge pile of Kleenex on the passenger seat. Someone, I suspected, had used my unlocked car overnight for an amorous escapade. The park near us was known for such vehicular prostitutional activity, and I guess they figured the cops wouldn't be looking at driveways.

But coming back 20 years later just to plant a Snapple bottle? Just to mess with me? I find that far-fetched. And I watch "Game of Thrones," so I know far-fetched. 

To recap: I didn't drink the Snapple, my wife didn't drink it, my kids didn't, nor did anyone who has ridden in the car that we can remember. I sometimes leave my sun roof open at work, so it is theoretically possible that somebody lofted an Abdul-Jabbar quality sky hook, and the bottle miraculously then lodged under the seat. Possible, but not likely.

Buddha famously said, "Three things cannot be long hidden: the sun, the moon and the truth." Clearly, Buddha never had a car.

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Wednesday Wa Pic - Taking no chances edition

 But, wait, I am unclear...can I go out this way?

Sunday, April 17, 2016

On this date, April 17...

On this date, April 17, in history:

In 1397, Geoffrey Chaucer recited The Canterbury Tales for the first time at King Richard II's court. By all reports, the looks on the faces of the courtiers were pryceless.

In 1524, explorer Giovanni da Verrazzano reached New York harbor, and was amazed to find a bridge named after him.

In 1555, after enduring 18 months of war, Siena surrendered to the Florentine army and quickly became a rarely-used Crayon color.

In 1861, Virginia seceded from the United States. A century later its battle slogan, "You've come a long way, baby," was used to sell cigarettes.

In 1897, a UFO crash was reported in Aurora, Texas. The craft was reportedly "cigar-shaped," and it's occupant described as a "Martian." The fact that in recent years Aurora had endured a fire, deaths by spotted fever, and a railroad stopping 27 miles short of reaching the town, should not in any way be factored in to the idea that this was a publicity stunt aimed at reversing the town's dwindling fortunes.

In 1905, the U.S. Supreme Court decided the historic case "Lochner vs. New York," which proved that the "right to free contract" was implicit in the 14th amendment's "due process" clause, and I've lost you already.

In 1937, Daffy Duck made his first appearance on film, in "Porky's Duck Hunt." In it, Daffy ate an electric eel and turned into a lightning bolt, and also did his soon-to-be-signature crazy dance. Inexplicably, despite the fact that drunken fish commandeer a boat and sing "On Moonlight Bay," it did not win an Oscar.

In 1945, Brazilian troops captured the town of Montese, Italy back from Nazi troops by waxing them to within an inch of their lives.

In 1961, Cuban exiles trained by the CIA attempted to oust Fidel Castro by invading Cuba via the Bay of Pigs, completely overlooking Cuba's prettier-named Bay of Buena Vista. Proof again that sometimes giving a little heads-up to the P.R. department beforehand can make all the difference.

In 1964, Jerrie Mock became the first woman to circumnavigate the world in a plane, without once having to hand peanuts to a drunk insurance salesman.

Also in 1964, the Ford Mustang came on the market, single-handedly derailing abstinence-only sex education nationwide.

Oh, and Happy Kamada Ekadashi! It's a Hindu holy day. But you knew that.

. . .

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Wednesday Wa Pic - Virility you can trust

 Nothing screams "natural" like a roll-up security door.

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Those three little words mean home sweet home

In olden times, if you wanted to explain to someone where you lived, you just said something like, "Over the bridge, past the blighted convent, by the hangman's tree. If you get to the mule skeleton, you've gone too far."

But UPS deliveries often went to the wrong hut.

Then humanity came up with road names, numbered addresses, global positioning satellites. But now we have finally reached the pinnacle of precision—three words.

It's an app, and no, I don't own stock in it, but I love the concept—three words to define your location. It's the end of hard-to-remember numbered addresses! Every nine square meters on Earth is a new trio of words.

It's called What3Words, and it allows closer precision than GPS. Plus, it's just fun. For example, one nine square meter section of the White House is at "audit.much.client." Another section is at "cloak.deeper.pulled."

The three words are fixed. They don't change, but the order changes, so the words can be reused. "Deeper.pulled.cloak" is in Washington state. I have become addicted to putting locations into just to see if such a place exists.

I type in random combos. "Rabbit.faced.dude" is a spot in an obscure forested corner of Brazil. Granted, it's probably not getting a lot of deliveries. "Snappy.dresser.barely" is in the middle of a lake in Uganda. A small town in British Columbia hosts the location "backward.pickle.sorters." I tried the trio "unwed.donkey.jockeys" and found it in Colombia!

A spot in left field in Dodger Stadium is located at "media.became.kept." A corner of L.A. City Hall is "elite.engage.noses." A section of MacArthur Park is at "vase.awaits.puns." Now that's memorable.

Think about it. If I tell you my address is 4371 Michigan Avenue, and you don't write it down, will you be able to repeat it a day from now? But if I say I live at "," that will still be stuck in your brain pan 10 years from now.

(It's in Angola, by the way. Getting UPS to deliver there is another issue altogether.)

Unfortunately, the app guys have already set the words, so I can't choose my own address. I mean, yes, I could live at "stud.beyond.comparing," the address exists, but I'd have to move to Russia.

 . . .

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Wednesday Wa Pic - Fowl cashier

 I have to say, her human disguise was impeccable

Alternate punch line for old SNL/Dana Carvey fans:

This cashier make a lousy house pet.

Sunday, April 3, 2016

There are some things you can't un-see

I got new glasses recently, because all those hours of "The Love Boat" in the '70's are finally catching up to me. Some things you can't un-see.

The eye doc said she didn't like my eyeball pressure, so I told her I didn't much care for her shoes. She wrote me a referral to a specialist to see if I might have glaucoma in my future, which, I am pretty sure, as comas go, is not a type that I want.

The specialist's waiting room was packed, and people kept coming in as if word had gotten out that winning lottery tickets were sold there. A guy who came in after me finished his paperwork before me and promptly took the moral high ground, positioning himself in the only space it was possible to stand. I had to sit in a recently-vacated spot with the old people and the lame. I think I saw him smirking, but there were too many people to make out faces.

First I met with a tech who made me rest my chin on a thing and look in a viewer at a tiny red barn at the end of a long white fence row. I saw no cows. I hoped that was a good thing.

The tech put numbing solution on my eyes and dilating drops, and sent me to wait in a darkened vestibule. There were bad paintings on the wall. At least I think they were bad. Who's going to know?

Finally I was called, and as I left, I whispered to the only guy left there, "Make a break for it." He smiled vaguely, but I could tell I would be that night's story at dinner.

The doctor had me look up, down and all around while she shined blue, yellow and white light straight into my brain. There were no little red barns and cow-less fields, only hellfire and pain. Imagine having a job where you torture people all day but you aren't even running for office.

No glaucoma, but the doc advised annual checkups. As I headed back to the car, the world looked fuzzy, like a Hallmark special. Like "Anne of Green Gables" shot through a much-abused salad bar's sneeze guard.

Amazingly, with sunglasses I was able to drive home O.K., and I tell you this—Los Angeles has never looked better.