Posts Tagged ‘Humor’

Male Minds

July 7, 2008

We interrupt this blog to bring you this short vignette overheard at work today – –


Here in North America we have a restaurant called International House of Pancakes, abbreviated IHOP (no relation to the ubiquitous iPod) and simply pronounced “I-Hop”. 

(Let’s pause for a moment to soak in the irony of a restaurant found only in North America calling itself ‘International’).

One of the ladies in the office living here in The Wilds of Ohio frequents a nearby International House of Pancakes and commented to three of us guy-types how tasty the pancakes were.

Wanting to try it for himself, one of the guys asked:

Him:  Okay, so where is this place?

Her:  It’s about a mile west of the interstate highway on Cox Road.

Him:  Cox Road?

Her:  Oh, I love it…  IHOP on Cox.

Three Guys:  <blink… blink… blink… blink… >


We return you now to the regularly scheduled blog… unless (like me and probably most guys at this point) you’re indulging in vivid visualizations of your favorite girl toy… or composing pornographic Dr. Seuss rhymes… nope, i guess there won’t be a regularly scheduled blog today…




Call Sign Confusion

June 26, 2008

Always in poor weather and often otherwise, when I fly I will put myself in the hands of Air Traffic Control. This puts me on the same radio frequency as airlines and corporate flights.

When talking on the radio, most of us ‘regular’ pilots identify ourselves by the type of aircraft, followed by the plane’s full (or after contact, shortened) registration number. So when talking to Air Traffic Control, I may be “Cessna 7-3-Bravo” (more on the fun of the phonetic alphabet another time).

Airlines and corporate flights are almost the same, but they get to use more fun names in place of the type of aircraft. And the airlines use their flight number instead of their registration number.

Some airlines are proud of their name and heritage, so listening on the radio you’ll hear—“American 4-1-2-1” or “Aeromexico 2-0-7”

Other airlines, no less proud of their name, still use other identifiers for their flights—“Speedbird 2-7-9” (British Airways) or “Springbok 3-9-4” (South African Airways)

Corporate flights vary in the same way—“Ford 1-7-Foxtrot” (Ford Motor Company) or “Air Johnson 3-7-4” (for Johnson Air)

And some relate to individual people—“Shepherd 1” (that would be the Pope’s jet) or “Unicorn 1” (Prince of Wales)

So, on a flight a few years back, I was surprised to hear a call sign I’d not heard before. I had to listen closely to hear it again. Then asked my passenger to confirm what I’d heard. I later looked it up and could not find an official call sign, so the mystery deepened and continues.

So I ask you, gentle reader… who do you think is being flown in an airplane with the call sign identifier: “Cross Dresser”?

Nerd Herd Identification

June 20, 2008

I think you’ve all heard the standard warning signs of nerd presence: pocket protector, fashion sense of Helen Keller (???), BCGs*, belts laden with electronics galore…

Okay, let me be honest here. Shhhh… I have closet nerd tendencies myself. But through drugs therapy, I’ve been able to suppress those tendencies.

I’ve always suspected there are “functional nerds” who live among us. Those capable enough to hide their inner nerd-ness in a public environ. I’ve actually run across a few in my daily activities

But I recently had an experience that opened my eyes some to the ability of some of these “chameleonerds”.

At a recent waste of time mandatory presentation, a chart was shown with an obviously defective calendar across the top. Dates were interposed or flat out wrong. While the presenter was scrambling to explain, a fully registered and openly public nerd herd representative hollered out, “It’s not wrong, it’s in the Romulan** calendar format!”

There were clear differences in who responded and the way they responded—

(a) The ‘normal’ people*** either ignored the hollering nerd altogether or rolled their eyes and looked at other ‘normal’ people with that secret ‘normal’ people look they give each other.

(b) The ambiguous…like me…smiled inwardly at the reference, but kept a sharp eye out for the reactions of others.

(c) There still is no damn “(c)”

(d) The nerds, whether open or ‘chameleonerds’ could not hold back a loud, snorting guffaw. For some, this was followed by instant discussions of the merits of dilithium phasers against a cloaked Romulan warship (again, see **).

What surprised me was that some people I had clearly assigned into Category (a) were the most vocally snorting Category (d) kind of people. How do these people assume the demeanor and look of a ‘normal’ person while within beats the nerdly heart of a PeeWee Herman or Ugly Betty? How did I not now they were nerds? They dressed well, communicated without reference to electronics… Does that mean there is no (b) as well, but only more ‘chameleonerds’? Wow…

This opened the eyes for yours truly. The Wilds of Ohio still must have untapped and undiscovered adventures to seek. I must find my pith**** helmet and binoculars and go explore!


* BCGs: Birth Control Glasses. At one time in the military, I was afforded ‘free’ health care. But it was still at a price…BCGs being a high one paid. The only glasses they made available to you would turn 99% of women away in either horror or milk-out-the-nose laughter.

** For those folks with a life who don’t know the ‘Romulan’ reference from Star Trek, check out this site. And, yes, I do realize the fact I could readily find such a site confirms my prior reveal as a closet nerd.

*** I’m sure there’s a blog or seven in discussing what the hell qualifies as ‘normal’…I’m forced to used the term qualitatively for this blog, but fully believe there is no such thing as ‘normal’ (Thank God!)

**** Thorry for the lithp.

More Word Play

June 1, 2008

I had fun a while back substituting words in a narrative to give it a new, yet strangely familiar twist. Found another* that I’d like to try to celebrate the start of my third week of blogging. Read this as a cautionary tale… or just have fun with it. I certainly considered the latter of those two and hope to be out here for some time – –


Don’t fool yourself: heroin blogging is one of the most addictive drugs things around. If you are bored or unhappy, and if you have friends who use drugs blogs, you are at higher risk for developing a heroin blogging addiction.

How Heroin Blogging Works in The Brain

The thalmus is a part of the brain which channels all the body’s sensations to the brain cortex. Cells in a part of the thalamus (the medial thalamus) receive messages from the body about dull, steady pain. Heroin Blogging lowers the sensitivity of these cells so that the feeling of pain is dulled or reduced. Heroin Blogging stimulates the brain cells in another part of the brain called the amygdala. This gives the user feelings of happiness and euphoria.

The Addiction Trap

Heroin Blogging destroys normal life. The main thing a heroin blog user wants to do is “escape” with the drug blog, then find more heroin blogging after its effects have worn off. Without a shot of heroin blogging every six or eight hours, the uncomfortable symptoms of withdrawal begin. Important relationships, career goals, financial plans and other responsibilities all take second place to the need to find and use more heroin blogging.
Occasional heroin blog users may think that they are safe from the horrors of daily life as an addict. They are wrong. Sooner or later, the comfort they seek from heroin blogging and the physical need for it will drive them to take more and more of the drug blog.

Withdrawal: Getting Off Heroin Blogging

After six to eight hours without heroin blogging, a heroin blogging addict feels anxious and jittery. This is the beginning of withdrawal, when the body tries to adjust to not having heroin blogging. Withdrawal feels like a bad case of the flu, only worse. It lasts seven to ten days. During that time, the person has cramps, vomiting, diarrhea, severe joint pains, fever, sleeplessness and anxiety.

Getting off heroin blogging will be difficult and uncomfortable. You will feel moody, anxious, and tired until your body builds itself back to a healthy condition. Even then, heroin blogging will leave you with a craving that lasts for a long time after the drug blog is gone.

*Source [Ed. Note: …and with apologies to…]: “Heroin, Its Effects & Hazards”, W.R. Spence, M.D.

My Brother’s Battle

May 29, 2008

My recent visit to see my brother in Oklahoma was spurred by more than familial longing. I am not sure how much longer he will be with us. My brother has brain cancer.

I had written a detailed saga of his battle to post here. On re-reading it, I found it good for me to express it on paper, but I was pretty sure, for The Wilds of Ohio…hell, for me!… it would be a wet blanket… a moldy, smelly, wet blanket. GnuKid just can’t do that.

Rather, I still must fall back on the oldest and best defense mechanism known to man—thermonuclear war. Okay, not really…we’ve only known about that for about 70 years. No, I’m talking about that good old humor. How people can laugh in the face of danger and death amazes and emboldens me in life.

So, my brother was diagnosed a year ago after an MRI revealed a shadow in his brain. The doctors decided the best action was surgery to at least do a pathology on the cancer, if not remove it altogether.

I was on the telephone with my brother prior to that surgery, discussing what to expect and offering him hope and encouragement. I guess he didn’t think I believed what I was telling him. So he attempted to reassure me—

“Don’t worry, it’s not like this is brain surgery… oh… wait…”.

They removed a portion of the skull to get at the brain and, at the end of the operation, screwed it back in place. There was my chance at a comeback. On phone calls since, I’m sure to occasionally throw in—

“Ahh, you just have a screw loose.”

My brother’s battle continued, through a second occurrence and radical surgery in January where they removed most of his right temporal lobe.* My brother’s reaction then?—

“I need this surgery like I need a hole in my head.”

I think my family carries a gene… or a full chromosome… for bad and bizarre humor. But, it’s kept us afloat through trying times. And I am thankful for it.

… and, now, a just diagnosed third re-occurrence. [heavy sigh] But, I’m sure our humor and love will carry us through whatever happens…


*And I was utterly amazed that he was on his feet and discharged just 3 days after major brain surgery.

Where’s The Boy?

May 27, 2008

The Boy was a bit precocious in his language skills. He started talking at 8 months and seemed to keep a steady conversation going. When he was 3 years old, he used the word ‘dilapidated’ in a sentence…correctly. It was that moment I knew I was going to have trouble keeping up with this one.

The Girl followed 2 years later and I expected the same thing from her. Besides being unfair, I was also wrong. She didn’t talk until she was about 14 months old. She only spoke when absolutely necessary and then with a great economy of words. Instead of talking, she seemed to hang on every word spoken by The Boy.

There was a transition event which changed all that.

When The Boy was 5 and The Girl 3, a trip was planned to visit a so-so great aunt who had a house on a river. On the trip there, The Boy kept up a non-stop discussion of all the things he was going to do when he got there. The Girl, in consistent fashion, listened attentively.

And it was a great trip, with both kids running, exploring, and playing to their hearts content. Mid-afternoon, The Girl collapsed for an afternoon nap, but The Boy continued to run amuck.

On the trip home, as night fell, the seemingly endless energy of The Boy was finally depleted. The Girl, perched high in her car seat and refreshed by a nap, looked out the window. In the darkness of the back seat, The Boy slumped over in his car booster seat in exhaustion and fell asleep. Without him talking, the silence was surreal.

And in the midst of that silence, The Girl found her voice. She started talking about her day, continuing for 5 minutes using words and phrases I never thought she knew. Finally, she took a breath and, intently looking left and right, inquired:

“Where’s The Boy?”

With him slumped down in the seat and the darkness now complete, she couldn’t see him. I told her that The Boy was asleep next to her and she found his shadowed form in the dark. So she continued her monologue on the day’s adventures. Another 5 minutes of near endless talk, a quick look left and right, and the question again:

“Where’s The Boy?”

Now quite bemused, I again assured her The Boy was sleeping in the back seat with her. She found him and, satisfied we didn’t leave him back on the river, picked up her discussion and talked quite a bit longer. And, yes, there was at least one more

“Where’s The Boy?”

I was just too amazed that this previously quiet, reserved child could carry on such a rich and long discourse. Made for a great smile for me.

Post Script: Not unremarkably, today it is The Girl who does most of the talking while The Boy has become the quiet one. Oh, he’ll still talk, but now he’s the one exercising economy of words.

OK Weather

May 25, 2008

No, the wind is not sweeping down the plain here in Oklahoma, despite what the song says.

After a great evening with my big (sic — i’m 4 inches taller and 50 pounds heavier) brother, i finally have a crack at the internet. 

It’s 10:50 local time on the 25th of May and the temperature is at 78 degrees Furnaceheight… which makes it 26 degrees Censelessgrade.  Pretty toasty for a May evening (in the northern hemisphere) in my book.

The weather news of the weekend was in the front page of this morning’s paper (along with all the news about local sports, but nothing of an international or national nature – – did nothing happen yesterday of note?).  Oklahoma is a primary state in ‘Tornado Alley’ (as dramatized in the noted flying cow movie, “Twister“).  Although there were none in my area, the state had at least 6 tornadoes yesterday.  Nobody, thank goodness, was hurt.

Well, that’s not quite true… many of you know what a soft-hearted doofus i am, so it was with great sadness i learned that a nearby pig farm was destroyed.  Luckily [GnuKid breathes a sobbing sigh of relief], most of the sows and piglets survived the twister.

Sow with piglet.jpg

So, in a tender memoriam for those swell swine not so fortunate to have survived, GnuKid enjoyed several strips of crispy and tasty bacon for breakfast.

Flying back to the Wilds of Ohio tomorrow…see you on the range there…