Monday, April 03, 2017


I know what my new house will need...a touch of class. Maybe I'll put up some portraits of old English nobility. There must be prints you can buy like that.

Yeah, the Baroque look. 

Gee, all the wigs in those pictures have big clefts in the middle.

Maybe I'll need a landscape to offset them.

Portraits are useful because they hint at something I'm much too refined to assert openly...

...namely that I am...Ahem!...descended from English nobility.  Of course, there are no nobles in my family, and I'm Irish rather than English,  but I don't see why I should suffer because of that.

I'll need to find suitable women's portraits to hint at my wife's pedigree...

....something with lots of hair.

Something very ancien regime.

Something with a fashionable mole.

Thursday, March 30, 2017


Listen, I don't know anything about fashion but I love art and the most artistic and funny modern designer that's come to my attention far...Thom Browne.

Browne's been around for a long time but I only became aware of him when he began working with a unique Dutch male model,  Thomas Hoefnagels. Haw! Hoefnagels looks hilarious in Browne's clothes, especially the suits...

Hilarious, but solidly artistic. The line, the shapes, the color and pattern, the sense of's all there. The use of the mask and beanie is inspired.

Browne even pads the legs of pants. Yikes!

Holy Mackerel!!!!! It'll be a while before you see this (above) in my neighborhood. 

For women Browne likes the Eliza Doolittle look.

That's all I have to say about Browne, but I'll add the work of a couple of other designers to make the point that fashion's made a big comeback lately. 

 Who designed this women's top (above)? Boy. the legacy of Calvin Klein is still with us. It's all about simple elegance, and rewarding people who stay in shape.

Ah, the English schoolboy look. Expect to see it on the street this year.

Sunday, March 26, 2017


Don't you love the way the best magazine writers used to begin their stories? How do you like this opening:

"The floor beneath Conners' feet dropped like a gallows trap. What had been solid, shining mahogany was suddenly a gaping black void. The man shot through space. Down, down, into the darkness below. 

The native servants stood blandly silent. From the opening in the floor came a thump then, after a moment, a horrible scream of terror, that echoed ominously through the room like a banshee's wail.

'For God's sake take me out of here! What is this thing? God, it's coming close to me!"  It's----' "

Very nice. I'll bet nobody ever stopped reading after an opening like that.

How 'bout this one:

"Night, black and rain-swept, shrouded the Kirty Institute for the insane. Gusts of howling wind attacked the ugly gray buildings like seas pounding some bleak, rocky coast. There was the same impression of desolation, of a savagely forbidding place that humans shunned."

"A small car lurched to a stop in front of the guardhouse at the gate. Two men got out, collars upturned, hats pulled low."

Nice. Very nice.

Of course you could argue that the best openings were the most brief.  Here (below) the writer grabbed our interest with just a few words:

"Sally, take that child away. Don't put it down in the dirt."

Huh? The dirt!? Yikes! What the heck was that story about? I found it excerpted in, of all things, a book about grammar, so I have no idea what the context was.

Ah, giants walked the Earth in those days!

Monday, March 20, 2017


Here's how it happened. 

My wife and I were talking about the new house we're hoping to get and I mentioned a type of screen we could get for the back porch.  She said something like, "Oh, not that kind. Our bees'll get stuck in it." 

Huh? Our bees? 

I laughed and said, "Haw! you're gonna die when you hear this. I thought you, this is rich...Haw! I thought you it comes...I thought you said...'BEES'. Haw haw, haw!"

She replied dryly: "Yeah. That's what I said...bees. I've wanted to be a beekeeper ever since I was a little kid."

(Groan!) A long discussion ensued during which I was reminded of favors that I owed.  The upshot want to see a picture of me a year from now? That's me (above), and all the hapless guests who ignore the warnings and venture out into our backyard. 

I forgot to say that my wife wants a goat, too. 

We might have to let the goat live inside the house.

How can I kick the poor creature into the backyard when all that carnage is taking place out there?

Have you ever seen a corpse stripped by bees? Well...I haven't either...but it must be terrible.

I don't think any amount of coaxing will convince the pets to leave the house.

Would you if you knew the yard was full of bees?

I don't know what the neighbors will think. If we're lucky we'll have hippie neighbors. Bees don't sting hippies. That's why God created there'll be somebody to love the world's bees.

Thursday, March 16, 2017


My name is Mildred and this is my autobiography.

I grew up on a farm where I had a certain reputation...deserved, I suppose.

But it was kinda boring there.

All the boys in my town just liked to drink and fight. I thought, geez, there has to more to life than I hitched a ride to the big city. 

Now THAT was a change!

Haw! I only succeeded in holding down one normal job.

After that I got "connected." I took some serious risks and made some serious money. 

You wouldn't believe the situations I got into.

I had a few laughs, took a few hard knocks.

Maybe some guys trusted me who shouldn't have.

That last caper put the fear into me. I almost got nabbed! One day I came across a "marriage wanted" ad in the paper and I went for it.  It was a chance to lay low for a while.

Okay, the guy wasn't the handsomest man in the world. 

Anyway, it didn't work out. I just didn't feel right around my husband's creepy friends.

And he experimented on me! Really! It was horrible!

One day I couldn't take it anymore and I pushed him into a vat of acid. As his smoldering skeleton slipped beneath the liquid he made one last grab and pulled me in.

As you can imagine I thought that was the end, but amazingly I found myself in the sky, winging my way Heavenward. 

I couldn't believe my eyes! I found myself in the afterlife, surrounded by all my old, if you can call them that.  Everybody I used to know! I didn't know they let people like us into classy places like this! Wow! What a kicker!

And there on a rock was a harp, just waiting for me to pick it up and play! It was all too good to be true! 

"Hmmm," I wondered out loud, "I wonder if Heaven has any pawn shops? That harp must be worth something."

HUSBAND (VO): "No Dear Wife, but you won't need the harp."

THE HUSBAND: "After my next experiment you won't have anything to play it with!"