To ask or not to ask – that is the question.

Harland was in a Publix supermarket recently standing a couple of people back on the checkout line, when he noticed a guy in front of him who had a most unconventional tattoo on the back of his head that read, “DON’T ASK.” Now, ordinarily he would have ignored it completely, but the guy was so unusual-looking that it spurred his interest.

The man was approximately 5’ 2” tall. His head was completely shaved, which displayed the tattoo splendidly, except that hanging from the very back of his head was a ponytail about four feet long and held together with an extremely small gold handcuff. That would have certainly been enough to draw Harland’s interest, but the guy’s clothes were just as bizarre as he was. His shirt was composed of three-inch-wide strips of bright red material that hung from his neck to his waist from a velvet collar. The strips covered his chest and back and were decorated from top to bottom with tiny yellow question marks. His pants looked more like a lampshade that was held up by a pair of shocking blue suspenders. What made them even stranger was that they were flashing off and on as if there was a blinking light underneath. After a minute or two Harland couldn’t contain himself, and he leaned in close and asked:

Don’t ask what?”

Excuse me?”

“Don’t ask what?” Harland repeated.

To which the man rolled his eyes, turned his back, and uttered:“Don’t ask.”

Harland had to admit he was temporarily stumped because don’t ask is exactly what he was asking about, but after a minute or two he persevered and repeated:

“Don’t ask what?”

“You don’t take instruction well, do you?” the man answered and turned his back on him once again.

Harland continued, “Why would you have the words ‘Don’t Ask’ on your head if you didn’t want someone to ask?”

“That’s exactly the point. If I wanted someone to ask I’d have the word ‘Ask’ on my head. The fact that I have ‘Don’t Ask’ on my head means that I don’t want someone to ask!”

“But that logic makes no sense. If…”

“STOP!” the man screamed. “This is starting to sound like an Abbott & Costello routine. If you don’t stop asking I’m going to wrap my ponytail around your neck and pull it tighter and tighter UNTIL YOU DON’T ASK ME TO STOP!”

At that point Harland got the message and decided to leave well enough alone. When the man reached the checkout lady and she asked if he’d found everything he was looking for he astounded Harland once again by answering rather indignantly:

“NO, I DIDN’T!”

“Oh, I’m sorry, sir; what were you looking for?”

“A gorgeous five-foot blond with a wild sexual appetite who cooks like Rachael Ray, dances like Jennifer Lopez, and has a lot of money!”

Harland was astounded at his response and couldn’t wait to see what the woman’s response would be. He imagined her clobbering the guy with the grapefruit that was sitting on the countertop, or picking up the tub of fried chicken by her hand and dumping it over his head, or better still, grabbing him by his ponytail, wedging it between the rollers of the moving track, and watching with glee as he disappeared from view as flat as a pancake. Instead, Harland’s anticipation turned to shock when she smiled, pointed over the guy’s shoulder, and said, in a voice that was as sweet as honey:

Oh, that would be in aisle 5, on the left, further towards the back.”

As the man gleefully ran from the checkout line towards the back Harland stood there in disbelief. What the hell is going on? Is this some sort of magical establishment? And as the realization hit him that he was in some sort of incredible alternate reality his thoughts began to soar, and he waited with anxious anticipation for her to ask if he’d found everything HE was looking for… When she did, he couldn’t wait to answer, and, trying to establish the same amount of indignation as the ponytailed guy before him, he responded:

“NO, I DIDN’T!”

When she answered, “Oh, I’m sorry, sir; what were you looking for?”

Harland licked his chops, smiled broadly, hitched up his pants, and with thoughts of realizing one of his wildest dreams he answered:

“A bright red Lamborghini, with $1,000,000 in cash in the trunk.”

What followed was not at all what he expected.

WHAT? WHERE DO YOU THINK YOU ARE? THIS IS A SUPERMARKET, NOT SOME SORT OF GAME SHOW!”

Then she poured the tub of chicken over his head, clobbered him with the grapefruit, sending him sprawling to the floor, and as he lay there, hearing bells clanging in his head, he looked up just in time to see the ponytailed guy with a gorgeous blond on his arm, dressed in a very expensive minidress, carrying a shopping bag filled with $100 bills, and as they danced by like Jennifer Lopez, ponytail guy looked down at Harland and with a sympathetic look asked:

“Hey, man, what happened to you?”

Harland lay there with a sheepish grin on his face, then looked up and, in a barely audible voice, answered:

“DON’T ASK!”

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When I die, I want my last words to be, “I left a million dollars under the…”

The other day I was sitting in the outdoor garden center in Costco’s. That’s where I usually end up when my wife and I shop there. It’s not that I don’t help with the shopping; it’s just that after lifting the gigantic bulk-packaged products from the shelves and trying to lift and balance them onto the shopping cart so they won’t tumble down like an avalanche, clobbering someone nearby, I’m so exhausted I head straight for the garden center and the most comfortable outdoor lounge I can find.

What I described did happen once – thus my fear of it happening a second time. The cartons were unusually high that day, and as I made a quick turn around the lobster tank they fell from the cart on top of a rather small gentleman, knocking him into the tank along with a full contingent of tissue boxes that broke loose from their packing and floated around him like sharks readying themselves for a tasty meal. After that unfortunate incident, I was barred from Costco’s for three months.

So, I’m sitting watching families go by. Young children holding their mothers’ hands, fathers with their arms around the shoulders of young boys and girls, toddlers sitting in carts smiling happily – all feeling safe and protected by their parents — and it reminded me of an incident years ago when my daughter was five years old. We had gone to the beach for the day. I was sitting next to her while she made sand castles. I turned away to reach for a bottle of water, and when I turned back she was gone. I can’t begin to tell you the terror I felt at that moment and how it increased with every minute I searched for her.

I should have been there to protect her. How could I keep her safe if I didn’t know where she was? How frightened must she be not knowing where her dad was? How unprotected and alone was she feeling. Luckily, I found her a short distance away, playing with another little girl her age and scooped her up into my arms and held her tight, not wanting to let her go. As I sat there remembering those awful few minutes the realization of what it must be like for the parents and children of the families separated by our present administration hit me like a ton of bricks. I have been just as upset and incredulous as most people in the country at what the administration in the white House has done to those families, but it wasn’t until I could relate to it in a more personal way that it really reached my heart.

Now, I’m not only sad but angry as hell. I’m so pissed that I can’t find the words to describe my outrage – and while trying to find words for the state I’m in it occurred to me that there is no one who can be described in more negative words than the Blamer-in-Chief who resides in the Oval Office. So, if for no other reason than to calm the anger bubbling up in my soul I’d like to list all the words that so accurately describe Trump. Please feel free to skim quickly through the list, add your own words, or read it intently, frothing at the mouth as I did while compiling it.

BAD, WICKED, CORRUPT, IMMORAL, DEPRAVED, DEBAUCHED, UNSCRUPULOUS, RUTHLESS, MERCILESS, CRUEL, SHAMELESS, DAMAGING, RUINOUS, DANGEROUS, HATEFUL, TERRIBLE, DREADFUL, APPALLING, SHOCKING, UNPLEASANT, DEFICIENT, FLAWED, DEFECTIVE, IMPERFECT, SHODDY, ABYSMAL, TROUBLESOME, UNMANAGEABLE, UNRULY, RUDE, TROUBLED, UNPLEASANT, DISTRESSING, ROTTEN, SOUR, CONCEITED, VAIN, SMUG, ARROGANT, BIGHEADED, NARCISSISTIC, DESPOT, TYRANT, OPPRESSOR, TYRANNICAL, SELF-CENTERED, THIEF, CRIMINAL, VILLAIN, LAWBREAKER, OFFENDER, UNSCRUPULOUS, ROBBER, BLAMER, COMPLAINER, MOANER, GRUMBLER, MALCONTENT, WHINER, GROUCH, TROUBLEMAKER, COMPLAINER, DICTATOR, BULLY, DESPOT, PERSECUTOR, TORMENTOR, TYRANT, OPPRESSOR, INTIMIDATOR, TORMENTOR, CRANKY, CHEATER, FRAUD, SWINDLER, CHARLATAN, CON MAN, PRETENDER.

If I’ve repeated any words please forgive me. It was hard stopping to check once I got started. Thank you for indulging in my need to release some of my venom. I do realize, however, that at this moment there is one word I can’t yet apply to him that I wish I could, but when I can, folks, I believe it will be a glorious day for this country.

The word I’m referring to is “GONE!”

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Why is it so hard for some to find reasons to accept those who are different, when they find it so easy to find reasons not to?

Freddie was the most consistently upbeat person I’d ever met – and it drove me out of my mind. It was early in my career as a graphic designer, and he and I shared an office. Well, calling it an office was an exaggeration so extreme it would be tantamount to calling a miniature shed a mammoth mansion. It was so small that when we were seated at our desks our backs were touching. While that worked well if our backs itched, it had its drawbacks as well. If he suddenly swiveled his chair to the left it would send me spinning to the right like a dreidel. Neither of us could leave the office without the other exiting first. This required us to take our bathroom breaks at the same time — which, I hate to admit — led to an intimate knowledge of each other that didn’t (pardon the pun) SIT WELLwith us.

Now I must admit that I was probably not the perfect office mate – especially for him. You see, I’m the furthest thing from a morning person you’ll ever meet. It takes three to four hours from the time I grudgingly climb out of bed until my morning scowl changes to something even remotely resembling something pleasant.

Although I don’t know for sure, I imagine that Freddie, on the other hand, wakes from slumber like the phoenix rising from the ashes. I’m sure there are those of you who may question my phoenix analogy, but when you look at what it represents you might be able to understand why I use that to describe what I think of as Freddie’s morning ritual. Phoenixis asymbolof rebirth and represents the victory of life over death. That’s why I believe Freddie awakens each morning with a lilt in his step, a smile on his face, and the belief that he’s essentially immortal. I, on the other hand, wake up each morning thinking that I died during the night and just haven’t realized it yet.

I know he wouldn’t want me to tell you this, but it’s such a perfect example of what made Freddie tick. He had such a strong desire to change a negative into something positive that he sewed fragrant patches inside his underwear so his farts would smell like mint. How could you not love being with someone like that? Well, unfortunately I couldn’t! Don’t get me wrong; we were friends. It was just that the difference in our personalities made it difficult for me to accept him for who he was. He would come in every morning snapping his fingers, flashing a smile, singing an uplifting song, and then plop into his chair and say:

“Smile, Joe; it’s great to be alive. Each new day brings new strengths, new thoughts, and new reasons to be happy.”

 And I’d answer:

“You know, Freddie, someone who’s always as happy as you are should run off, join the circus, and become a clown.” Meanwhile, I was thinking to myself, “If the new day would bring me a new officemate I’d have a good reason for joy!”

 That thought that ran through my mind so often became something I regretted deeply when Freddie didn’t show up for work one morning and numerous calls to his phone went unanswered. Visits to his apartment were fruitless, and eventually everyone stopped looking for him.

Weeks later I met Moe, my new officemate. He slogged into the office with a look of gloom on his face and cast such a pall on my day that I immediately felt even more downcast than I had before. After a week of working with Moe I came to an amazing realization, when the following thought crossed my mind:

“OH, MY GOD, THIS GUY IS ME!

I began to realize how much I missed the lightness of being Freddie brought to the office every day. I missed hearing him stride in, snap his fingers, plop in his chair, smile and try to cast away the gloom that I had hanging over me each morning. I missed having him spin me like a top whenever he chose to turn in his chair. I pined for the sunshine he brought each day that I tried so hard to counter with the dark clouds I’d kept hovering above me… and I hate to admit it, but I even missed our daily dump together.

One morning, while I was sitting in my chair spinning around in a circle just to remember what it was like with Freddie at my back, it came to me like a flash of sunlight bursting through a dark cloud at the end of a storm. I had been so fast to resent how different he was that I’d never given myself the chance to enjoy what Freddie brought to our relationship. It got me to wondering why I was afraid to acknowledge someone just because he was different from me. What is this unacceptance I use as a shield that keeps me from realizing that something amazing can come from understanding and embracing someone’s differences.

As much as I’d bitched and moaned about Freddie, he never complained about the shadow I’d constantly tried to cast upon his continuously upbeat persona – and that was the moment I realized how much I could have learned from him, had I been more accepting of who he was. Freddie’s disappearance, as saddening as it was, made me think differently about how important it is to appreciate each other and our differences, and not be so quick to disparage them. I will always be grateful to Freddie for teaching me something in his absence, which I wish I had learned long before he disappeared.

EPILOGUE
I was at the Little Apple Circus months later sitting in the dark arena waiting for the show to start, when the sound of finger-snapping came through the loudspeakers. Then a single spotlight suddenly split the dark tent to reveal a single clown sitting in the middle of the arena on an office chair, which he began to spin around, and in a booming voice shouted into the microphone:

“Smile, folks; it’s great to be alive. Each new day brings new strengths, new thoughts, and new reasons to be happy.”

 And in that one glorious moment, I knew what had happened to Freddiehe had actually run off and joined the circus so he could bring joy to many people at once. Not just one person who sat back to back with him and didn’t realize what a treasure he was!

 SECOND THOUGHTS
I had written a number of headlines for this particular blog but wasn’t sure which one I wanted to use, so rather than exert my already taxed brain I thought I’d list them here and give you the chance to choose.

 Poem:
If I were white and you were black, and our friendship did begin.
Would it tend to make a difference, based on the color of our skin?
If I were white and you were black, and in love we deeply fell,
would we say to those who looked down on us, no sweat, we’re really quite well!

Limerick:
There once was a man who was different.
And many were quite scared of him.
But they had no idea, that he was quite a dear, and they had nothing from him to fear.

Question:
“Mommy, why is that boy brown and I’m white?”
“Because God wanted us to know that people of a different color are not really bad.”
“Oh, then why did he make President Trump orange?”

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There are three ways to do things: the right way, the wrong way, and the Navy way.

They didn’t tell anyone what the danger was. “Just pin these badges to the front of your shirt and forget about them,” they informed us. “But if the badges turn red, stop what you’re doing and yell as loud as you can for help.”

It was my first year of active duty in the Navy and I was assigned to the Quonset Point Naval Air Base. So much for joining the Navy and traveling the world. I should have known it wasn’t going to be the way they described it in the commercials.

JOIN THE NAVY AND SEE THE WORLD – TRAVEL TO EXOTIC DISTANT SHORES –  BE ASSIGNED TO A JOB THAT BEST FITS YOUR TALENTS – LEARN NEW SKILLS THAT GUARANTEE YOU A BRILLIANT CAREER!

The day I enlisted I filled out a form that took more than two hours to complete, which I was thrilled about because of its thoroughness. I was asked to describe myself in minute detail. Specifically, to define the special skills I had that would assure I be placed in a detachment of the Navy that would most benefit from the talents I had to offer. After indicating that I was an artist, a songwriter, and could sing a little, I was assigned to The Ordinance Division – the job of stockpiling bombs, rockets, and missiles in reinforced armor-protected steel buildings that were positioned at strategic parts of the base. Our most important responsibility was to load these weapons onto fighter planes, readying for takeoff if the need arose to protect the base from enemy attack. So much for being assigned to a job that best fit my skills.

What made the assignment even more head-scratching was the fact that the weapons had to be transferred from the steel buildings onto large, heavily armored bomb trucks, and rushed to the planes in record time. A function that was very difficult for me for one simple reason – I didn’t know how to drive. When I arrived for duty the first day and informed my Chief, Chief Hardy – who happened to be playing poker at his desk – of that fact, he glanced up at me, then back down at his cards, slapped an Ace of Spades on the desk, yelled, “WINNER TAKE ALL,” in triumph, then motioned to a sailor who was swabbing the deck, and said:

“Hey, Horatio, after you’re finished with the deck take this new guy out and teach him how to drive.”

As a note to those who haven’t had the distinct pleasure of having to learn a new language after becoming a sailor:

In the Navy…
You don’t“Mop the floor;” you “swab the deck.”
You don’t “stare up at the ceiling;” you “stare up at the overhead.”
You don’t “lean against the wall;”you “lean against the bulkhead.”
You don’t “spread rumors;”you “spread scuttlebutt.”
You don’t defecate in a toilet on a Navy transport plane; you do it in a “Honey Bucket.”(A Honey Bucket is essentially a pail that had to be taken from the plane and emptied after the aircraft landed.) Heaven help the poor guy who gets the Honey Bucketdetail. He can sometimes end up with “FOC,”the Navy’s word for “Foreign Object Contamination.”Coincidentally, it’s a word you hear repeated quite often by the very guy who has contacted “FOC.”

Most important, the one thing a sailor should always be listening for is the word “OSCAR,”which means, “MAN OVERBOARD.” The first time I heard it and saw sailors running around like crazy I wondered who the hell this guy Oscar was and why he was so popular.

After I took numerous driving tests, destroyed many pylons, and scared the hell out of the driving examiner too many times to mention, I finally passed the test. I’m not sure if I truly qualified or if he was just too frightened to get into the truck with me one more time.

Because this was the first time I’d ever been away from home there were other things that matured me in ways I never thought possible. Sleeping in the barracks, a single room that held over 30 bunk beds, brought my attention to guys with some of the strangest habits I’d ever seen before. For instance, one of my bunkmates, Davy O’Fallon, a very sweet Irishman whose only shortcoming (pardon the pun) was that when he woke up every morning he’d roll onto his back and reveal a tiny erection that stood straight up like a miniature flagpole. Then he would give it a quick salute and recite the following mantra:

“Oh, tiny member standing there, so firm yet oh so small.
It matters not what size you are, just be there when I call.”

Then there was Willie S, who slept in the bunk directly above me. He seemed perfectly normal until he fell asleep. Then he would quote lines from Shakespeare. It didn’t bother me until one night, when in a deep, reverent voice, I heard him recite the following words from the Shakespeare play, Cymbeline, King of Britain:

I can express no kinder sign of love, than this kind kiss.”

 I didn’t think too much of it until out of the corner of my eye I saw him leaning down from the top bunk with his lips pursed, as if preparing for a kiss. That night I moved to the other end of the barracks.

 There was Klute, who everyone called Knucklehead because he loved to crack his knuckles against the top of his head to the rhythm of The Nutcracker Suite. Another one of the guys was called Butthead. He got the name because he kept a single cigarette tucked behind his ear to prevent him from ever smoking again. When asked how that worked he would take it from his ear, stick it up his nose, return it to his ear, and ask:

 “Would you put something in your mouth that had been up your nose?”

 There were others in my outfit worth mentioning, but I think it’s time I get back to the beginning of this blog and what turned out to be one of the most frightening days of my life.

Beside being warned about the badges and being told that we were going to move some sort of secret device from the deck of an aircraft carrier that docked the night before to one of our special weapons buildings, we were told nothing more. When it appeared to be a 10-foot round sphere enclosed in thick hazardous waste material I began to feel a little apprehensive. When I saw there were Navy Seals with assault rifles stationed at 20-foot intervals protecting the dock and the route to the weapons building where we were directed to store the lethal looking sphere I prayed nothing would go wrong – and nothing did until the mission was over and I was driving the truck back to the garage with my Shakespeare friend Willie S riding shotgun. That’s right; you read it correctly. They chose me, someone who had just learned to drive, to be part of this important mission and move this secret package to its destination. That was the day I learned the phrase: “There are three ways to do things: the right way, the wrong way, and the Navy way.”

After I parked the truck, locked the door, and turned to Willie to give him a congratulatory handshake both our badges started flashing bright red, and before I even had a chance to scream “HELP,”a crew dressed in hazmat gear ran into the garage, zipped us into hazmat suits, rushed us to a special facility, sealed us inside a decontamination room, and told us it would take about a week before we’d know if we were disinfected and cleared to leave. Surprisingly, what bothered me most about the situation was not that I might have some sort of deadly disease but that I’d have to sleep in the same room every night with my Shakespeare-quoting roommate Willie S and hear things like:

 I must to the barber’s, monsieur; for methinks, I am marvelous hairy about the face: and I am such a tender ass, if my hair do but tickle me, I must scratch.

 Now please forgive me if I’m showing off my lack of sophistication, but what the hell does that mean? The phrasecreated images of a barber trimming my beard andmy ass, causing me to scratch an itch from the falling hair that tickled my butt. I’m sure that’s not what Shakespeare had in mind when he wrote it, but trying to understand each evening’s mutterings conjured up the most absurd images, which kept me awake night after night after night. Finally, after a week of Shakespearean tragedies I was cleared to leave the room and the midnight mutterings of Willie S.

As delighted as I was to sleep once again in my own bunk the joy was short-lived when I awoke to the sight of Davy O’Fallon’s miniature member once again standing at attention. It became clear, however, that he was welcoming me back with a mantra specifically for me. My only consternation was that it sounded like it had been written in Shakespeare’s hand.

“Let me embrace thee, dear friend, that you might stand alone.
Methinks that thee have absolutely nothing to atone.
Ay me, for aught that you benever fearful,
Pray tell about last week, dear friend, please giveth me an earful.”

 Then, to my surprise, everyone hopped out of their bunks, and Chief Hardy stepped into the room holding a candle-lit cake with the words, “Joe and Willie, Our Heroes,” writtenacross thetop. A bottle of champagne was popped, and Willie and I were celebrated with warm smiles and heartfelt hugs, and suddenly, each one of these guys who seemed like such oddballs when I first met them, showed they were my buddies, and guys I would be proud to stand shoulder to shoulder with if the need ever occurred.

I discovered something important in that moment. Something that would change me, and the way I viewed others from then on. I realized how quick I was to judge those who were different from me. How I discounted them rather than viewing them through more understanding eyes. I realized that each person you meet in life is a single diverse brush stroke that when applied tto your canvas becomes a rich tableau that can color your life for the better. I still think of my time in the Navy as an amazing experience that I feel grateful to have had.

It’s been years since I was discharged from The Navy, and I still think of and value Davy, Willie, Klute, Butthead, Chief Hardy, and the rest of the guys in my unit. Of course, to this day I can’t fall asleep without someone reciting Shakespeare in my ear.

ENDNOTE

We were never told what it was that we moved from the aircraft carrier. I do know that a month later it was moved again to another secret destination. There were rumors that it had been some new, secret type of nuclear device. I can neither confirm nor deny that. I do know that I was asked to sign a Non-Disclosure-Agreement to never mention my part in that day’s events. Something I will keep to myself forever and never reveal to any – – – OH MY GOD, WHAT HAVE I DONE!

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You don’t need a cape to be a superhero. All you need is a heart and a way.

Those of you who read my last blog are aware that it had to do with keeping a secret. I must admit that since I posted it I’ve been on a soul-searching journey that has permeated my every thought, challenged my sense of authenticity, and left me feeling deep regret for not disclosing the truth about the person I’ve kept from everyone my whole life.

Because I’ve tried to maintain a sense of honesty with each word my fingers command the keyboard to export, I realize that as much as it pains me, it’s finally time to disclose something I never have, something I have kept to myself since I was a child. So, before I lose my nerve, my bravery melts away like ice on a hot summer day, and I resort back to concealing with every fiber of my being what I’ve kept hidden for so long, I’ve decided to reveal the unadulterated truth about myself… my good friends…

I AM SUPERMAN!

I know it’s hard to believe, and this probably gives you confirmation of something you’ve thought of many times while reading my blog, “He’s definitely lost it this time,”but please continue reading with an open mind as I describe the facts, which I know will change your “There’s no way I can believe this” point of view to “oh my God, he’s telling thetruth.”

I met Jerry Siegel many years ago when I was a young boy, and he sidled up to me, looked left and right in a conspiratorial sort of way, and whispered in my ear:

“I want you to know I can see through your glasses.”

“Well, of course you can; they’re glasses,”I replied self-consciously.

“No, you don’t understand,” he responded. “Let me be more clear – I know who you are!”

Jerry Siegel was an investigative reporter and the only person ever to not be fooled by my clever disguise – MY EYEGLASSES. He recognized who I really was while no one else could. Suddenly, I had a crisis on my hands that I knew I had to nip in the bud as soon as possible. So, after much dialogue and intensive persuasion I managed to convince him not to reveal my true identity by dangling an idea in front of him that he couldn’t refuse – a way to make a lot more money than he could ever make as an investigative reporter. I promised that if he created a comic strip about me I would share my secrets with him, reveal my exploits, and he could write stories about me that would be so compelling Superman comic books would fly off the shelves and he would become a very rich man. He agreed to give it a try. In the cartoon, he changed my pseudo identity to Clark Kent and published “Superman Comics” with the understanding that if the concept failed he would resort to his original idea and tell the world who I really was. He hired an artist named Joe Shuster to draw the strip, and thankfully, as the saying goes, the rest is history.

With that possible debacle behind me I was able to keep my true identity a secret and carry on being “The Man of Steel,” which as unbelievable as it may sound is not quite as remarkable as you think. Yes, I have super powers, but in an attempt to glamorize them the comic strip’s portrayal was not quite accurate. Sure, bullets bounce off me, but what isn’t known is that THEY HURT LIKE HELL! Not only are they painful, but they leave large welts on my skin that take weeks to heal. That’s the reason you never see me block them with my head.

I’m sure everyone would love to fly as I do, and believe me it is a lot of fun. But what you don’t realize is that it takes incredible concentration and attention to detail to stay in the air. If I’m not extraordinarily attentive to whether I’m going up, down, left, or right, I could lose awareness of what I’m doing and drop out of the sky like a duck at a duck shoot.

And don’t get me started about my X-ray vision. It’s not something I can turn on and off at will. It’s on all the time. I’m sure there are some of you with sex on your mind who would love to have the power of X-ray vision – but let me know if you feel the same the next time you see a burly, sweating construction worker bending over to pick up one of his tools.

I know you marvel (pardon the pun) at how I use my freeze breath in a most ingenious way to stop some sort of incoming catastrophic disaster. I’m sure that’s a power you wish you had when thinking what a hero you’d be if you could freeze a pond anytime you want by blowing on it, just so kids could ice skate. But try to temper your admiration until you’ve been in a public pool and couldn’t hold back a sneeze. I’ve been thrown out of more YMCA’s than a thief with an uncontrollable desire to confiscate other people’s swimming trunks.

Last but certainly not least is my super strength. It comes in handy when I have to lift a car off someone, but, to be perfectly honest, that doesn’t happen very often. Let’s just say I’m getting tired of having to replace my chinaware every couple of weeks – and I can’t remember the last time I allowed myself to give someone a hug.

All right, now that you know who I really am you’re probably wondering why, after all these years, I’ve chosen to come clean and finally reveal my true identity. It’s an honest question that deserves an honest answer. The reason is that I can’t, in my heart of hearts toloerate untruthfulness and deceit any longer when I myself have been holding back the truth for so many years. Also, and the most important reason, is that there’s a present danger that even I, with all my powers, can do nothing about, so I’m asking for your help. The danger is Donald(“Why should I tell the truth when I have so many reasons to lie?”)Trump. It was a shock when I realized that my great powers could be diminished by the depravity of this man. Let me try to explain in a more poetic way.

Although Bullets can never break my skin.
The things that he says, cut deep within.
And each time I hear another lie,
my first response is to break down and cry.

 Flying high, high in the sky
allows me to stay far away from this guy.
But each time I step once again on the ground
and see him do something that’s less than profound,
the need to fly makes my head pound,
and I soar once again with a leap and a bound.

X-rays are great; they reveal what’s inside.
They allow us to see, things we can’t hide.
But I truly believe, right from the start,
if we X-rayed him, we’d find no heart.

My Super strength is what everyone wants,
but unfortunatly no one can have.
However, there is a strength within reach
that I really believe I can teach.
So please continue to read what I say,
and together we’ll make things better one day.

So, my friends, the good news is that we can do something about our present situation if we combine our resources and join forces to become a country where each person is as important as the next one and opportunities are available to everyone. Trust me folks – after all, I’m Superman – it can be achieved by the simple process of getting involved, standing up for what we believe, making our voices heard, and, most important, voting for a person who stands for these values.

Phew, now that I’ve gotten that off my chest and admitted to something that I’ve kept hidden for years, I can’t begin to tell you how good it feels to cast aside the heavy burden that I’ve been carrying for so long. I hope you don’t think you have to treat me any differently now that you know who I really am. Even though I’m Superman I’m still the same person who’s been writing these blogs for the purpose of brightening your day and making you laugh.

Okay, now that I’ve shared some truths with you, I’d like to set the record straight in case you’re also wondering about others like Wonder Woman and Batman. If you believe in a woman with a magic lasso who flies around in an invisible plane – and there’s a man who dresses up to look like a Bat, receives a Bat signal in the sky, and runs around with a young boy in tights, then I have a Unicorn I’d like to sell you at a very reasonable price. I mean, come on, what could be more preposterous?

And, with these last words of truth over lies I’ll say goodby… “UP, UP, AND AWAY!”

CRASH! BANG! KER-SMASH!!!!

 “Damn it, I keep forgetting to open the window before flying off.”

Posted in Humor | 1 Comment

I can keep a secret – it’s the people I tell who can’t!

Everyone who’s been in show business has had some sort of contact with The Mob. In my case, both The Mob and The Police had an impact on the direction of my career. When I was a kid, singing in my room along with my 45 records, learning how to harmonize, I never thought it would lead to a relationship with one of the most terrifying men I’d ever met.

I always loved the sound of harmony. In High School, it was impossible for me to be at a party without looking for a couple of guys willing to hang out in the corner of the room and sing. More times than not the rest of the guests didn’t appreciate our ear-cringing attempt at harmony, and instead of responding with the delightful sound of applause they would usher us to the nearest bathroom and slam the door shut behind us. We didn’t mind it that much, but the people who used the bathroom found it rather disconcerting to hear songs like the Del Vikings hit, “Come Go with Me.”

 When I was discharged from the Navy I began to think of singing as a career and joined a couple of different groups that had very little success. It was only after I met a couple of guys in a bowling alley in Brooklyn, started a new group named The Emotions, wrote a song called “Echo”, and signed a contract with Kapp Records, that incredible things started to happen. It was also a time in my life that was so incredibly ominous it scared the hell out of me.

The day our first record was released I was driving to my manager Henry’s house when I heard it played on the radio for the first time. I became so excited that I stopped the car abruptly, jumped up on the hood, and began dancing The Watusi – a very popular dance at the time. It was only after a motorcycle cop pulled up and I heard the car horns blaring behind me that I realized I’d never even pulled the car over to the side of the road. The drivers in the line of cars backed up behind me looked like a caravan of serial killers ready and willing to fight each other for the sole purpose of putting me out of my misery, but the exhilaration of hearing myself on the radio kept me dancing until I heard the cop roar at the top of his lungs:

“WHAT THE HELL ARE YOU DOING UP THERE?”

“I’m doing the Watusi!” I responded and demonstrated some new moves that I thought were quite inspiring.“If you’d like, I can show you a few steps.”

“THE ONLY STEPS YOU’RE GOING TO SHOW ME ARE HOW TO STEP DOWN OFF THE HOOD OF YOUR CAR AND PULL IT OVER TO THE SIDE.”

 After doing what the cop commanded I noticed that as the cars that had been stopped behind me drove past, the drivers all gave me “il maocchio,” which for those who don’t know is the Italian version of “the evil eye.” All except for one guy. He was sitting in the back of a long black limo, wearing a white fedora, black pinstriped suit, a silk shirt, and a bright yellow tie with an exquisite pattern of handguns and bullets all over it. He flashed me a big toothy grin, revealing glistening gold nestled comfortably in his teeth, flipped what looked like a business card out of his window, and made a zipping motion across his lips as the limo pulled away.  That was my first encounter with Nunzio Nunziota, head of the Nunziota Crime family. After the cop lectured me and gave me a ticket for dancing on my car – which, incidentally, became the title of the next song I wrote – and motored into the now freely moving traffic, I picked up the card the guy in the limo had dropped and didn’t know what to make of it. There were two large N’s interwoven with swirls and curls, rendered in beautifully crafted calligraphy that appeared to be some sort of crest, followed by the words:

If you want someone to never tell,
call on me, I’ll send’ em to hell.
Nunzio NunziotaWisest of all Wise Guys

I stuffed the card in my pocket, continued to my manager Henry’s home, and found him even more ecstatic than I was:  “WE WON, JOE; WE WON, WE WON!”   Back then there was a very popular DJ named Murray the K, who played five new recordings every night, asking for his audience to call in and vote for their favorites. Each night’s winner would then compete at the end of the week for the RECORD OF THE WEEK. This was a big deal because winning would almost assure the record becoming a top 40 hit.

“WE WON, JOE; OURS WAS THE WINNING RECORD TONIGHT, AND WE’LL BE COMPETING SATURDAY NIGHT FOR THE RECORD OF THE WEEK!”

Henry screamed and began dancing ecstatically around the living room.  When I say, “around the living room,” I mean it literally because he had two left feet, which prevented him from doing anything but boogying around in circles, so I placed the song “Let the good times roll” by Shirly & Lee on the turntable and played it nonstop until Henry tired of his rotational frolic and collapsed on the floor. Then I picked him up, threw him on the couch, and headed home.

The next day, still hardly able to contain myself, I received a phone call from someone whose voice sounded like Louie Armstrong talking through a mouthful of gravel. (Please note that what follows are not typos. The words are spelled phonetically to reveal how they sounded to me.)

“Joey, is dishu?” “The last time I looked I was.” I have a habit of joking whenever someone makes me nervous. 

“You’re a very funny guy. Now take off your jokin hat so I don haf to come over dere an pull it down ova you ears. I’m calling for Mr. Nunziota. He would like your presence at The Get Whacked Pub, and be dere soon.” 

“I don’t know how to find my way to Get Whacked.” 

“If you don chu soon will!”  

“Uh, o-okay, h-how s-soon is s-soon?” I answered with my heart in my mouth. 

“Stop whatcha doon and be dere by Noon,” he growled and hung up.

When I pulled up to Get Whacked (oh my God, even typing the words frightens me), I could almost hear the theme from the movie The Godfather. Of course, I knew it was only my imagination… which is what I thought until I walked through the front door and heard the melody lilting in the air from a jukebox in the far corner of the room. Sitting at a table with a couple of guys standing behind him who looked like they had been cast in every gangster movie I’d ever seen was Mr. Nunzio Nunziota, looking every bit as dapper and intimidating as the first time I saw him through the window of the limo.

Siediti qui,”meaning “sit here”, he muttered and pointed to a chair on the other side of the table. “You like a cup of double espresso!”

“No thanks, I don’t drink…”

 When he put up his hand I realized he wasn’t asking if I wanted double espresso, he was telling me I did, so I said with as much respect as I could:

“I can’t think of anything I’d rather have more… I’d love a cup.”

 He snapped his fingers and before I knew it a steaming cup of double espresso was placed in my trembling hand.

“Joey, Joey, Joey, I’ve had my eye on you for a long time.” Which made the blood in my veins seem to freeze instantly. Then seeing the alarm on my face, he waved his hand in front of me the way a priest does at confession and continued. 

“No, no, it’s not what you think.”  He brushed a tear from his eye and said, “Let me explain. Before your Uncle Lundy, my very dear, dear friend, left for a better place he made me promise that I would look after you.”  

Then watching him wipe a tear from his other eye, I couldn’t help but think that he was being a little melodramatic. You see, my uncle Lundy left for a better place by moving from New Jersey to California – but I kept quiet and listened intently.

“So, Giuseppe, I don’t want you to worry about Saturday because yours will be The Record of the Week. I guarantee it. Now drink up before your double espresso gets cold.”  

He then stood up and walked through a curtain into a back room with his two body guards following closely behind. I swallowed the espresso in one gulp and left, wondering if I’d just made a deal with the devil, which was weird because at that very moment the godfather theme stopped playing and The Clover’s rendition of “Devil or Angel” started blaring from the jukebox.

I spent the rest of the week quaking in my boots. Have you ever quaked in your boots? It’s not as bad as crapping your pants, which I came close to doing while sitting with Nunzio, but in all fairness drinking a cup of double espresso, as bad as it tasted, was much preferable to either one. Saturday night I sat by the radio with nervous anticipation until Murray the K shouted with unbridled enthusiasm:

“FOLKS, SOMETHING HAS HAPPENED THAT’S NEVER HAPPENED ON THIS SHOW BEFORE. WE HAVE A TIE. THE EMOTIONS’ “ECHO” HAS TIED WITH THE FOUR SEASONS‘ “BIG GIRLS DON’T CRY” FOR RECORD OF THE WEEK… SO I HAVE NO CHOICE BUT TO ANNOUNCE THEY’RE BOTH RECORD OF THE WEEK!” 

I didn’t think much of it at the time, but after seeing the Broadway show “Jersey Boys” I couldn’t help but wonder if one of The Four Seasons also had an uncle who knew Mr. Nunziota. A month later, while I was basking in the elation of extensive airplay and huge record sales, gravel voice called again and suggested I check out my front step. On the mat was an envelope with the words “Bank Jobs” written in striking calligraphy across the front. Inside were contracts for a month-long series of shows at a chain of banks whose name I can’t mention because I’ve since signed a non-disclosure agreement for $130,000.

Thinking that I already owed Nunziota a favor and didn’t want to be any deeper in his debt I decided to call back and say I couldn’t accept the offer – until I saw how much we were being paid for each show and realized that there was no way I could pass up that much money… so we started the tour the following week. The performances were scheduled after banking hours, with special invitations given to high rollers, politicians, and well-known celebrities. I must admit the shows were incredibly successful. We received standing ovations, met many influential people, and made a hell of a lot of money to boot.

A couple of months after the tour, despite the fear and anxiety that flowed through my veins every time I thought of Nunzio Nunziota, I began to relax, enjoy our success, and be thankful for my Uncle Lundy and his relationship with Nunziota – until the chickens finally came home to roost.

One day there was a knock on my door. When I opened it, I was confronted by two FBI agents who asked if I knew a gentleman named Nunziota. After I shook my head in a nonspecific gesture that suggested neither yes nor no they advised me to come down to FBI headquarters to answer a few questions. It didn’t make me feel any better when I recognized one of the agents as the motorcycle cop, since promoted I assumed, who had ticketed me for dancing on my car. An uncomfortable sense of déjà vu was compounded when we got to their car, and after flashing an impish grin he said:

“Please take a seat in the back, or if you prefer you can ride downtown on the hood of the car.” 

After sitting alone in a small room for a couple of hours a different FBI agent entered, sat down across from me, stared deeply into my eyes until the sweat was dripping from every pore of my body, and asked, “So, Joseph, how much money did you make from all the bank jobs you did?” As frightened as I was I answered arrogantly, assuming he was just disparaging my music.

“I’m sure you already know, and it’s probably a lot more than you make in a year.”

Much to my surprise my response didn’t bother him in the least, and he stood up with a smug smile on his face, handed me a pencil and pad, asked me to write down everything that happened, and as he walked out of the room whistling the tune “Jailhouse Rock,” I picked up the pencil and wrote…

“Our opening number was Rock and Roll is Here to Stay’ in the key of C, with two bridges and one key change before ending with a loud 4-chord harmonic crescendo.”  I continued describing the show until I got to the fifth song, “Oh, What a Night.” I mumbled the word “Oh” as I was writing it down and for some reason repeated it a number of times, “Oh, Oh, Oh, OH, MY GOD!” And that’s when it hit me like a jarring chord from an un-tuned guitar. Nunzio Nunziota had set up our shows as a distraction so his goons could rob the banks while we performed so no one would notice. The bank jobs WERE REALLY BANK JOBS! I suddenly became paralyzed with fear, and as I sat there alone in that interrogation room the thought came to me that in the last couple of months I had had the hell scared out of me by both sides of the law.

Videos of us performing at the exact time the robberies occurred were proof enough that we had nothing to do with the crimes, and all charges that were being considered against us were dropped. When asked if I knew anyone named Nunzio Nunziota, I responded, “I can’t recall,” in my best Jeff Sessions impersonation, hoping that from now on Nunzio would be out of my life forever.

A couple of months later, while we were performing at a night club in Little Italy in Manhattan, there was a knock on the dressing room door, and when I opened it a very large man handed me a burlap sack of fresh espresso beans and in the same gravelly voice I’d heard numerous times before muttered:

“Mr. N, wants to let you know he appreciates you keeping a secret.”

I thanked him for the beans and before shutting the door answered, “Tell him not to worry. I can keep a secret – it’s the people I tell who can’t!”

Posted in Humor | Leave a comment

I made a huge to do list for today. Now if I can only figure out who’s going to do it.

Today I’m posting my 200thblog since I wrote the first one a couple of years ago. When I started, I had no idea what I was doing. I did it mostly by the seat of my pants. I must admit that I’ve learned a lot since then and I can attest to that because the seat of my pants has reached such a high gloss that I can see my reflection in it. Please don’t ask me how I know that.

To call what I write a blog is kind of a misnomer. Wikipedia describes a blog as “Adiscussion or informational website published on the World Wide Web consisting of discrete, often informative style text entries.”I think calling my writing informational is like calling a diary, “The Great American Novel.”There’s no disparagement intended, I’m merely trying to place what I write in the proper perspective. If I were asked to describe what I do I would answer:

“I write short, humorous, stories describing people and experiences from my past in a way that will lighten whatever heaviness someone may be feeling, and hopefully brighten their day.”

 What I haven’t mentioned before is how much MYday is brightened by the readership and positive feedback I’ve received from so many of you, and I thank you for that. It encourages me to continue writing and posting my stories. It’s great to know that I can have that kind of effect on someone who reads my blog, and assures me that if I’m able to give you a smile, a chuckle, or a laugh, it is well worth writing.

So, to commemorate my 200th, I’ve decided to list the titles of all 199 previous blogs, memoirs, short stories, ramblings, or whatever you prefer to call them. Feel free to peruse the titles. Hopefully some will make you laugh, and if there are any that pique your interest a simple click on them will bring you directly to that specific one, for as the title of my 8thblog states:

A day Without Laughter is a Day Wasted.

***

1 IT’S ALL ABOUT LAUGHTER (Tickled Pink)

2 Laughter is the shortest distance between two people

3 He who laughs last laughs best

4 A man isn’t poor if he can still laugh

5 Laughter is the best medicine

6 A good time to laugh is any time you can

7 Laugh, and the world laughs with you.

8 A Day without laughter is a day wasted

9 Laughing all way to the bank.

10 Remember, men need laughter sometimes more than food.

11 When the Police officer asked me where I was between 4 and 5 I said kindergarten.

12 (Part two) When the Police officer asked me where I was between 4 and 5? I said kindergarten.

13 (Finale) When the Police officer asked me where I was between 4 and 5 I said kindergarten.

14 Stories for My Brother-in-law Johnny

15  I Have Tears In My Ears Cause I’m Lying On My Back Crying In My Pillow Over You

16I’m just looking around

17 I remember I laughed so hard I cried. But my response was half appropriate, because I was at a funeral.

18 I hope he ends up eating his words.

19 We are all geniuses up to ten.

20 Praise The Lord, pick up the cards, and let’s get the hell out of here.

21 If laughter and sex have so many health benefits then wouldn’t laughing while having sex give you a double dose of healing for the price of one.

22 Friends are like underwear … some crawl up your butt … some snap under pressure … some get a little twisted … some are your favorites … and some cover your ass when you need them too.

23 “You got to be careful if you don’t know where you’re going, because you might not get there.” Yogi Berra

24 “The only time she showed any warmth was when she was cremated.”
– Barrett Weiser

25 “The only time she showed any warmth was when she was cremated.”
Barrett Weiser (part Two)

26 Just do this one last thing for me and I promise, I’ll never ask you for anything again.

27 One day I found twenty dollars in the street and was feeling great until my friend Benny told me he discovered Donald Trump was his uncle. Man, I hated that guy.

28 A sure sign you’ve joined a cheap HMO is when you notice the only item listed under Preventive Care feature of coverage is “an apple a day”.

29 It’s not so bad. She only snores when she’s asleep!

30 Sticks and Stones Will Break My Bones But Names Will Never Hurt Me.

31 Think what a better world this would be if we all, the whole world, had cookies and milk about three o’clock every afternoon and then lay down on our blankets for a nap. – Barbara Jordan

32 Think what a better world this would be if we all, the whole world, had cookies and milk about three o’clock every afternoon and then lay down on our blankets for a nap. – Barbara Jordan (part Two)

33 When people are laughing they’re generally not killing one another.

34 When people are laughing they’re generally not killing one another. (Part Two)

35 A Minor Inconvenience.

36 If you see me holding my nose, remember it’s not an opinion, I’m just trying to do a better job.

37 Best friends are people who don’t need to talk every day. Don’t need to talk for weeks at a time, but when they do, it’s as if they never stopped talking. Talk to me my friend and wherever I am I’ll hear you.

38 Why are there no good side effects? Just once I’d like to see a drug commercial that says, “May cause extreme awesomeness.”

39 Sinatra’s Final Concert.

40 “Put Your Hand Inside My Blouse!”

41 You Can’t Make This Stuff Up.

42 I have to stop saying, “How stupid can you be?” I think people are starting to take it as a challenge.

43 It’s yours honey. You can do what you want with it.

44 When I was a child my family’s menu consisted of two choices: take it or leave it.

45 When you realize you’ve made a mistake, make amends immediately. It’s easier to eat crow while it’s still warm.

46 You Have Reached The Offices Of “The Organization of Stutterers.” You Have an Hour and A Half To Leave A Message.

47 Superman climbed the Empire State Building and challenged King Kong to a fight. King Kong said, “I don’t have time. I have to catch a plane!”

48 What happens if you get scared half to death twice? (Steven Wright)

49 The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched – they must be felt with the heart. – Helen Keller

50 There’s something about hypnosis that has a detrimental effect on my head.

51 All I saw was a hole… followed by a hole… followed by… pardon my crude expression… another hole!

52 I’m always relieved when someone is delivering a eulogy and I realize I’m listening to it. – George Carlin

53 There’s nothing I can think of that can’t be fixed by a spoon and a jar of peanut butter.

54 You know you’re having a bad day when your middle finger is answering all your questions.

55 Ladies and Gentlemen, I’d like to thank my ass for putting up with all those shenanigans.

56 Most obstacles melt away when we make up our minds to walk boldly through them. Of course, if it’s a mountain, I’d recommend that we start climbing.

57 Laundry is the only thing that should ever be separated by color.

58 Pee Wee Herman: “I love you, Chairy; where would I be without you?” Chairy: “On the floor!”

59 This page intentionally left blank.

60 The shortest words –– “yes” and “no” –– are those which require the most thought.

61 I’ll see your bedpan and raise you two more.

62 Gee, officer, your eyes look glazed; have you been eating doughnuts?

63 Don’t let your mind wander… it’s too small to be let out on its own.

64 A positive attitude may not solve all your problems… but it will annoy enough people to make it worth the effort!

65 I love being married. It’s great to find that one special person you want to annoy for the rest of your life. – Rita Rudner

66 Old people at weddings always poke me and say, “You’re next.” So I started doing the same to them at funerals.

67 I was relieved that during my emotional tirade, I hadn’t involuntarily removed my glasses. Had I done that, he might have realized after all these years that I was actually Superman.

68 Life is all about ass. You’re either covering it, laughing it off, kicking it, kissing it, or trying to get a piece of it.

69 Do you think God gets stoned? I think so… look at the platypus. – Robin Williams

70 “I wouldn’t be concerned about how big your ass is. It’s that tiny thing dangling in the front that needs help.”

71 To enjoy what you eat, you’ve got to admit, there’s many a slip ’tween the fork and the lip.

72 Your food stamps will be stopped because we received notice that you passed away. May God bless you. You may reapply if there is a change in your circumstances.

73 “Sally, one day I’m gonna marry you.” She looked back, snickered, and said, “Never gonna happen, Joey; who would want to be named Sally Favale?”

74 What do you call a nun who loves two men?

75 Might as well; can’t dance!

76 You know you’re having a bad day when your middle finger is still answering all your questions. (Guest blog #2 from my cousin Tony)

77 You can’t judge a book by its cover, but if you read the last page, who the hell needs to buy the book!

78 Some cause happiness whenever they go; others wherever they go.

79 If you’re interested in breasts, thighs, or legs go to KFC

80 Do what you love, and you’ll find the way to get it out to the world… whatever it sounds like!

81 Those who think Santa Claus comes down the chimney are wrong; he really enters through the heart.

82 “I’m so glad I had the opportunity to make you laugh. It may not add years to your life but will surely add life to your years.”

83 It’s the most wonderful time of the year.

84 I always arrive late because I’ve noticed that people who are late are always in such a better mood than the people who are waiting for them.

85 “He’d never have known it was me if I’d been wearing someone else’s underwear over my head.”

86 When I think about my family, I think of a deck of cards… The men are like Kings… the women are like Queens… the kids are like Jacks, and everyone wants to be the Joker.

87 I was nervous about whether I’d use it correctly, but that didn’t stop my intense sensual desire to feel the leather against my skin…

88 If I leave my footprint in the sand, will anyone ever see it?

89 Now that I believe in reinclination I’m going to change my wool and testamony and leave all my wordly positions to myself.

90 I don’t believe in the afterlife, although I am bringing a change of underwear just in case — Woody Allen

91 The next time you feel like laughing at a choice one of your friends make, remember that you are one of them.

92 My therapist told me that the way to achieve inner peace is to finish what I start. So today I finished two bags of Cheeto’s, a gallon of ice cream and a six-pack of beer.

93 There is no sense of time to a toy soldier. It only exists at the moment a little boy takes him from the shelf, hugs him to his chest, and marches off to play imaginary games with him.

94 Since I changed my car horn to the sound of gunshots, I find that people move away a lot faster now.

95 What if you get to the end of the rainbow and find out you’re at the wrong end?

96 You know you’re getting old when you can’t walk past a bathroom without thinking “I may as well pee while I’m here.”

97 You don’t miss what you miss until you’re missing it, which begs the question: if you’re not missing it, is it really missing, or have you missed the fact that it’s missing?

98 A thousand unkind words, no matter how deeply planted, can still grow something beautiful if sprinkled with one word of love.

99 When I asked the 100-year-old man the secret to his longevity his answer was, “Don’t die too early.”

100 How come you never see a headline that reads, “Psychic wins lottery?”

101 Writing is the most fun you can have by yourself… although there are those who tend to disagree.

102 Alcohol is not in my VODKAbulary, but when I looked it up on WHISKEYpedia, I learned that if you drink too much, it’s likely TEQUILYA.

103 Sign in an optometrist’s office: If you don’t see what you’re looking for, you’ve come to the right place.

104 No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted.

105 My husband has an open mind, but his brains keep falling out.

106 SPECIAL FATHER’S DAY EDITION

107 I have an answering machine in my car. It says I’m home now but leave a message and I’ll call when I’m out. – Steven Wright

108 I walk around talking to myself all the time… the problem is I never listen.

109 Babies On A Plane

110 You are now leaving cremation… get your ash out of town.

111 Sometimes I don’t know whether to laugh or cry.

112 Boobs are proof that men can actually focus on two things at the same time.

113 I love cars and know a lot about them. I can look at any car’s headlights and tell you exactly which way it’s coming.

114 The only instant messaging he did was with his middle finger.

115 What if Donald Trump were a plumber?

116 I’m only responsible for what I say. Not for what you understand.

117 It’s probably bad luck to fall out a thirteenth-story window on Friday the thirteenth.

118 The world needs anger. The world often continues to allow evil because it isn’t angry enough – Bebe Jarrette

119 Why do you feel safe hiding under a blanket? It’s not like a murderer will come in thinking, “I’m going to kill… damn it, he’s under a blanket.”

120 The old neighborhood I came from was so tough that when I put my hand in some cement, I felt another hand. – Rodney Dangerfield

121 The old neighborhood I came from was so tough that when I put my hand in some cement, I felt another hand. – Part Two

122 The old neighborhood I came from was so tough that when I put my hand in some cement, I felt another hand. – Part Three

123 Sometimes doing a stranger a favor is like peeing on yourself: you’re the only one that gets that warm feeling.

124 A gun is a necessity. Who knows when you’re going to be walking down the street and spot a moose?

125 I once saw a forklift lift a crate of forks. And that was way too literal for me. – Mitch Hedberg

126 Suppose that you were an idiot and suppose that you were a member of congress… but I repeat myself – Mark Twain

127 A song about lost love is like a laxative… it increases your heartbeat, addresses a problem you wish you didn’t have, and makes you wish it could have ended differently.

128 Of Innies and Outies.

129 Poetry is when an emotion has found its thought and the thought has found words – Robert Frost

130 I think that mooning someone is the most juvenile thing a person can do… now will someone please tell me where I left my belt?

131 A dog teaches you about faithfulness, unconditional love, and to turn around three times before lying down. – From a quote by Robert Benchley

132 RJ – PART 2

133 Danger! Mouth operates faster than brain…

134 Never laugh at your mate’s choices; remember you are one of them.

135 When I think of Easter, the three names that come to mind are not The Father, The Son, and The Holy Ghost… they’re Maria, Monk, and my Uncle Joe.

136 A Bat, a Hat, and a Friendly Chat.

137 When did asses become such a big thing?

138 Those who spend too much time lamenting what they don’t have often miss the opportunity to enjoy the wonderful things they do have.

139 If you wake up one morning not feeling like yourself, think of it as an opportunity to become someone you’ve always wanted to be.

140 When the therapist asked her patient if his relatives suffered from mental illness, his answer was, “No… they all seem to enjoy it!”

141 If you think training procedures with cats are difficult, don’t worry. Most cats will have you trained in two days.

142 Instant gratification is having your cake and eating it too. Self-control is waiting just long enough for your cake to be moist and then eating it. Bad control is waiting too long to eat your cake and finding it stale.

143 Every child is a different kind of flower, and all together can make this world a beautiful garden.

144 A cop pulled me over and said, “papers,” so I said, “scissors, I win,” and drove away.

145 “It is better to remain silent at the risk of being thought a fool, than to talk and remove all doubt!”

146 What would he do with a brain if he had one?

147 Like the message on side-view mirrors, the object in my hand appeared much smaller than actual size.

148 Heaven is wonderful; you get to hang out with God and eat doughnuts whenever you want. Hell is like an Ikea store. You get to follow lost people with vacant eyes, who no matter how hard they try can never get out.

149 Part Two – Hell is like an Ikea store. You get to follow lost people with vacant eyes who, no matter how hard they try, can never get out.

150 When people ask me, “How did you get to be so creative?” I tell them I ate paste as a child.

151 People seem not to see that their opinion of the world is also a confession of their character – Ralph Waldo Emerson

152 My people skills are fine. It’s my tolerance to idiots that needs work.

153 The worst thing about being lied to is knowing you weren’t worth the truth.

154 The problem with political jokes is they get elected – Henry Cate

155 Bowling is the ideal sport. It’s basically an hour of drinking beer, occasionally interrupted by six seconds of exercise – Anonymous

156 “Christmas is quite simple; just loving others. The best gift we can ever give is not found in shops or under a tree. It’s found in the hearts of family and friends.”

157 Christmas, Once Again.

158 The most important thing you learn when you’re living in the streets is that it’s all right to touch someone’s heart but don’t ever touch their skin.

159 I had a friend who was a clown. When he died all his friends went to the funeral in one car – Stephen Wright

160 If you need something to lift your woes, just look for the smile right under your nose

161A lie is like a fart. No one ever wants to admit to it.

162 I wasn’t planning on going for a run today, but those cops came out of nowhere.

163 I’ve always wanted to walk up to someone, hand them a list and say, “You know what to do with this,” then walk away.

164 When I’m bored, I send a text to a random number saying, “I hid the body… now what?”

165 You can waste your life drawing lines, or live your life crossing them – Shonda Rhimes

166I’m at the age where food has taken the place of sex in my life. In fact, I’ve just put a mirror over my kitchen table. – Rodney Dangerfield

167 Look into the mirror… You’ll see a handsome lad. Then you’ll know you’re not invisible… There’s no reason to be mad.

168 Most misunderstandings in the world could be avoided if people would simply ask, “What else could this mean?” – Shannon Alder

169 Not only is my short-term memory horrible, but so is my short-term memory.

170 Sometimes after listening to our present President… I wonder, “who ties his shoelaces?”

171 Anyone who believes the competitive spirit in America is dead has never been in a supermarket when a cashier opens another checkout line – Ann Landers

172 When the teacher asked, “If I have 5 bottles in one hand and 6 in the other, what do I have? “The student answered, “A drinking problem.”

173 If you’re a mean person karma will have you come back as a fly and eat poop. Paraphrased from a quote by Curt Cobain.

174 Summer camp is a place where you spend a fortune to have your child live like a homeless person.

175 If lying were a job there is someone who would be a billionaire – oh, he already is!

176 While I was running today, I heard someone clapping. It raised my spirits until I realized it was just my thighs cheering me on.

177 When someone you don’t want to speak to calls you on your land line, just say, “I’m driving, can I call you back later?”

178 He was sitting very still on a park bench with a lampshade over his head when I first saw him.

179 A thief broke into my house last night and started searching for money… so I woke up and searched with him.

180 A guy says to the doctor, “Doc, my hair keeps falling out. Can you give me something to keep it in?” The doctor says, “Yes, here’s a paper bag.”

181 How much better would life be if a liar’s pants really did catch on fire?

182 Writers are people who have mastered the art of banging their heads on desks until something interesting pops out.

183 Want to hear a construction joke? It’s not finished yet!!!

184 Deja Poo: The feeling that you’ve read this crap before.

185 BREAKING NEWS: Two Male Lions Photographed While Seemingly Having Sex – Actual article in the NY Daily News, November 4, 2017

186 I love food! My favorite Italian dish is Lasagna. My favorite Chinese dish is Number 28.

187 Any man can be a father, but it takes someone special to be a dad.

188 There are three Christmas stages of man: he believes in Santa Claus; he doesn’t believe in Santa Claus; he is Santa Claus.

189 I knew I was in trouble when I asked for his cell number and he answered, “Cell 23.”

190 When people hurt you, think of them as sandpaper. They may scratch and hurt you a bit, but in the end, you end up polished and they end up useless. – Chris Colfer

191 There’s something to be said for doing something a second time. The victories, the missteps, the things you learned the first time, make up a total experience that allows you to thrive the second time around.

192 You can always tell a happy motorcyclist by the number of the bugs on his teeth.

193 There was a man from Dunkirk, who everyone knew was a jerk. He cared for no one, except his own fun, and tweeted all night just to irk.

194 Freedom is the right to be wrong, not the right to do wrong.

195 I asked God for a car, but when I realized He doesn’t work that way, I stole a car and asked Him for forgiveness.

196 “As you grow older, you will discover the purpose of having two hands, one for helping yourself, the other for helping others.” – Audrey Hepburn

197 I find television very educational. Every time someone turns on the set, I go into another room and read a book. – Groucho Marx

198 All the Porta-Potties in town have been stolen. Police have nothing to go on.

199 Church sign on Easter Sunday: Whoever stole our Air Conditioner, keep it, it’s hot where you’re going.

 

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