The Bird is the Word

“Flipping the bird” means to give someone the finger. Of course the “flipping” part means to put your hand into the proper position and the “bird” means either F—, or F— Y– or F— O–. For the purpose of this crude essay, I am taking it to either mean F— or F— Y— since off isn’t something you mean when you are pointing the bird directly at somebody.

Now there’s this song called Surfin’ Bird (Bird is the Word) from 1963 by the Trashmen. It appears like a nonsense song meant to poke fun at the nonsense fad of surfing or singing about surfing. But is it nonsense?

I believe that the expression “flipping the bird” was already in use by 1963. And “bird is the word” is by far the most repititious line in Surfin’ Bird. So it is my belief that the Trashmen meant to say “f— is the word” over and over again. It is my belief that the writer of this song had found a way to say f— on the radio with no repercussions. And that is the beauty of this song.

Even if the Trashmen did not mean to stealthily swear over the radio, it is my bet that the show Family Guy did when they played this song. They played it over and over again and wrote it off as Peter getting an ear worm. But knowing the show Family Guy, I bet that they did think of this “flipping the bird” definition. Family Guy would definitely try to get swearing past the censors. I used to watch Family Guy when this ear worm was featured. I don’t watch anymore because racism.

There is one other example that started in the 1960s where I think someone tried to use the disguise “bird” to get past the censors.

Jim Henson knew that any swearing or even something slightly unseemly wouldn’t get by the censors when he put his muppets on Sesame Street. But the muppets are all puppets except Big Bird. Maybe there is a reason that Big Bird doesn’t seem to fit. Maybe Big Bird is a Big F— Y– to the censors.

And that, ladies and gents is the bird conspiracy.

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Do Hunters Belong in the Eighties?

If the eighties were about nothing else, they were about big money and the pursuit of such. Hunters will also pursue doe. Well that is when a nice stag isn’t available. And also this is supposed to help cull the deer population in general.

Pop music dominated the eighties airwaves. From Madonna to Michael Jackson to Cindy Lauper. Pop was big in the eighties. And who else in the family hunts seriously? Why Pop of course. This subtle sexism was more obvious in the eighties. Sometimes Pop did this while consuming pop.

Where would the eighties be without fans? And blowing back the hair of all the beautiful people? Hunters also like to have their hair blown back. That means they are heading into the wind and thus their prey cannot smell them easily.

Are hunters as out of date as the eighties? Well their plaids and buckskins might be but camouflage seems to still be in style.

The very act of hunting might very well be out of style. After all it is the teens and we are very obviously in the anthropocene or the era when men are the prime drivers for most of the earth. Really in the anthropocene men are more likely to kill animals and whole species by accident. So I guess you could say that hunting is now out of date. Go back to the eighties, all you trophy hunters, that is if you want to belong.

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Why Canadian Conservatives Aren’t Worried About Justin Trudeau

By now most Canadians have heard about Maxime Bernier’s split from the Conservative Party. Bernier wishes to start a new Conservative Party in his own image.

The rest of the Conservatives are asking why Bernier is trying to hand the Justin Trudeau Liberals the next election.

Bernier says, “No, no, no, why don’t the rest of the Conservatives come join me in my new party? Those that don’t are handing Justin Trudeau the next election.”

Why the worry of the Liberal Party? It’s because the last time the conservative vote was split, Jean Chretien of the Liberals won three easy elections with the right vote being split.

But neither right wing side is backing down. I think this has more to do with Justin Trudeau than the right wing parties.

You see Justin Trudeau might sound like Liberals of the past but there is just one problem. His words mean nothing. He pretty much promised us proportional representation. He still promises redresses to First Nations that he never acts upon. He promises action on climate change while subsidizing big oil and ignoring the renewables businesses. He promoted women into his cabinet at a rate of 50%, but that means nothing as Justin Trudeau still has all the power.

Justin Trudeau may talk like a Liberal but he acts exactly like a conservative.

So I have to point out that there will be three right wing parties in the next federal election. The Conservatives, Maxime Bernier’s party and the Liberal Party. My hope is that the electorate will see the lack of choice on the right and choose the Greens or the NDP

Failing that the “Conservative” parties will not be afraid to have an all out power struggle. Because conservative Justin Trudeau will be the booby prize. And the Conservatives are fine with that.

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The Generational Shrinking of the Sitcom Family

I don’t remember when the shrinking between generations started happening in sitcoms. But the most obvious icon of this phenomena was Gary Coleman in Different Strokes. For that show there was the excuse that the parent wasn’t a blood parent to Gary Coleman’s character with the father being white and Gary Coleman being black. But, as per usual, Gary Coleman grew up to be much shorter than his parent as portrayed on that show.

Now some may say this phenomena is just that Hollywood picks short kids so they look younger than they actually are so the older kid can play younger with better acting ability. Blah, blah blah.

But if this were true, that means that Hollywood only employs tall adults and wee kids. Look, here they’ve managed to piss of both the tall and the small. Hollywood couldn’t possibly do this.

But even in a modern family sitcom – like Modern Family, all the kids as they’ve grown up are still considerably smaller than their parents.

No, no, it must simply mean that the average American family is really getting shorter, generation by generation.

It’s not like it hasn’t happened in the past. Suits of armour from the middle ages nowadays only fit the smallest men. It is believed that average height back then was about half a foot shorter.

The accepted reason for this change in height was that the people of the middle ages had poorer nutrition than we do today.

So I think we are shrinking again because of poor nutrition. Today a large apple costs about $1. Bad for you cake things made specifically for kids’ lunches cost about 50 cents. Nutrition is getting worse in many parts of North America than it was a generation ago.

Thanks for alerting us to the problem, Hollywood. Now if we could just go back to healthier, more expensive foods we would gain back that lost height.

If we don’t, our males will once again be able to fit into those middle age suits of armor. Well that is if they make them with bulging stomach plates.

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Tariffs Aren’t Just a Feature of Trump’s Policy

Let’s say you’re a 1 percenter like Trump is. Of course you only want minimum taxation on all of your doings. The best case of all would be if that tax were zero.

Now Trump also got elected because the lower classes of Americans wanted there to be less tax, too. The poor don’t want to pay tax and neither does the middle class. So Trump has decided that he will give everyone what they want.

Now something has to give when you have the biggest, most expensive military in the world and you want low or no taxation on your citizens. Trump has found his solution or so he thinks. Why he can tax people from abroad.

Except that he can’t tax people from abroad without taking over those countries first. So he has done the next best thing in his mind. He has applied tariffs to the goods that those other countries produce.

And that’s right, tariffs aren’t a feature of his economic policy, they are the main plank of Trump’s economic policy. The Tea Party is almost set to rejoice. Except that even they aren’t sure that tariffs are a good thing only. Other countries have retaliated with tariffs of their own.

Trump is trying his best to have things his own way. He has blamed trade negotiations between his government and Canada on the fact that Canada has too many tariffs on the American goods. When in fact Trump slapped Canada with 50 billion dollars in tariffs and all Canada has done is retaliated with, you guessed it, 50 billion dollars worth of tariffs on American goods.

Perhaps this is all a ruse so Canada won’t notice that because Trump acted weeks before Canada that Americans got weeks of tariffs free and clear. Watch for Trump to slap on more tariffs knowing that he is first to act. Watch him make the biggest fuss if he agrees to stop them that Canada and all other trading partners of the US must stop their tariffs at the precise moment Trumps stops his tariffs.

This few weeks thing is Trumps’s plan. Watch as every few weeks he slaps more tariffs on more countries. He will only give up on them if his own conditions are met.

And that’s how Trump intends to tax the world.

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North American Shoulders are Slowly Relaxing

The good news for North American shoulders is that VW Beetle auto sales are decreasing over time. Why should this matter to North American shoulders? Fewer VW Beetles mean the spotting of fewer “Punch Buggies” where the sadist punches the victim on the shoulder as a reward for being first to spot a Beetle. “No punch backs!” is quickly added by the non masochistic sadist.

The victim is left looking around bewilderedly hoping against all hope that a new Beetle will be spotted by himself first so he can take his revenge on the sadist.

So what is a poor sadist to do if VW finally pulls the plug on the Beetle? VW has done this once before and for awhile the Beetle was known as the New Beetle. Will there be a new golden age for shoulders?

I doubt it. All it takes is for one sadist to up his game and say, “Punch Mini! No punch backs!

Remember when driving games were fun? Well maybe they were just always a way to pass the time. But it would be nice if driving games weren’t painful. Sorry shoulders, everywhere. I just don’t see an upcoming golden age.

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Duke Minus

The Midas touch is the story of King Midas and how he got his wish for everything he touched to be turned to gold. This made Midas happy until he realized he would starve to death because he couldn’t eat gold.

Praying to Dionysius is supposed to have resolved the dilemma. Some say the Midas touch was removed. I say that Midas kept his touch for everything except eating and drinking.

But wait, what of his loved ones? Well it’s true they would be turned to gold but parenting older children can be done without hugs and kisses. Nannies would of course raise a king’s youngest children.

As for romantic attachments, that may have been impossible in other centuries. But we live in the 21st century and robots can be made out of gold. King Midas might have to divorce his wife but he could marry a golden robot.

Prince Milos was more humble. The gift he asked for was the Milos touch. Or Midas’ ability only things just changed to silver for him. This might feel like such a lesser gift. But the fact is if Midas existed previously, gold prices must have plummeted making the silver gift just as useful.

Besides, Prince Milos could see the silver lining in this.

A silver robot would be just as easy to produce as a golden one. So Prince Milos could live happily ever after – just like Midas.

But to stop the insanity of these touching gifts the god(s) must stop the process in some way. Unbeknownst to him, Duke Minus was given the worst touching magic of all. Everything he touched would turn into dookie. Except of course his food and drink.

Revealing enemies for what they really are might be fun for awhile. But really it’s impossible to make a robot wife out of dookie. So Duke Minus would pray and pray for this curse to be lifted. But the god(s) saw that they had been too lenient before so they held firm.

Finally Duke Minus read about a fantastic, nameless monster that could eat anything at all. So he vowed that he would suicide and have the creature eat him.

They meet on a hill in the wilderness. The creature seems to understand Duke Minus so he warns it to inhale him such that his body touches no esophagus and only gets burned by the fire in the belly of the creature.

The creature did as it was told and it was successful. A few days later Duke Minus’ creature passed the Duke and it became a dookie.

Now it is said that humans once made dookies of gold and silver. But now we have a little Duke Minus in each and every one of us so this is no longer true.

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7 League Boots

A league is the average distance something can travel in a mile. For a person that is about 3 miles. So 7 league boots should be called 21 mile boots.

The idea behind 7 league boots is that somehow each step in them would be 7 leagues. Now that is continent crossing speed. It would only take a couple hundred steps to cross 4 000 miles. No wonder some people’s eyes light up when they hear about 7 league boots.

But how could boots do this – without using actual magic? Well they could be incredibly tall – how about 7 leagues high. And the part that goes around your leg and foot would just be a small part. Almost all the height would have to be in the heel!

But wait, you couldn’t get up in these if you put them on at the ground – you wouldn’t have the leverage to stand up. So how about putting them on at a 7 league high cliff? Well you’re absolutely right – earth has no mountains 21 miles high. In fact you couldn’t breathe at such heights due to the thin air. So let’s scale these boots back and make them 1 mile boots. People have no problem breathing at the elevation of 1 mile like in Colorado.

To take each step, the boots must be light enough. That means they would need to be made out of the thinest, strongest, lightest material possible. Let’s hope that carbon fiber technology or even something better could make this possible.

There is another problem with being a mile high. You need to be safe in case of falls. Mile long falls will kill you. So you would have to strap a parachute to your back.

Walking would be a problem because of that leverage problem. You couldn’t take a 1 mile step at first but you might be able to work up to it. You could successfully take a first small step, then a longer one and a longer one. With each successive step your legs would have to add force. Eventually you could work your way up to mile long steps and a potential continent crossing.

You take a step in about a second. So this would mean that you would be going about a mile a second or about 3 600 miles an hour when you have built up your speed. Which is almost Mach 5. Mach 1 is travel at the speed of sound so of course your 1 mile boots would make you create sonic booms. Ear plugs would be a must.

Even travel on the plains would be fraught with danger. Imagine stepping into a ground hog hole. Like a horse this would very possible break your long spindly boots. You would of course catch yourself on time with your parachute and fall slowly to the ground. You might have to have an “ejector” on your boots so the fall doesn’t break your leg or worse.

So, to be careful on the plains, you would need binocular vision to examine the ground a mile or more away. These binoculars might be zoom binoculars and should be attached to your face over your eyes. This might also be an acceptable strategy in gently rolling hills. But going over mountains might be too dangerous. Perhaps the mountains would be an acceptable risk in extremely well mapped ground that you had memorized before hand.

Near to your destination you need to slow down by taking smaller and smaller steps and having a tower a mile high that you can safely dismount your 1 mile boots in. Now someone (with the same shoe size), can now take the journey opposite to what you have done.

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Ranking the Power of Certain Nations

By now everyone has heard about the way Donald Trump practically groveled to Vladimir Putin. But it was obvious this was going to happen. After all, Trump might owe his election win to Russian meddling in the American election.

Then, too, it was obvious that some such was going to happen because Putin was at least 30 minutes late for the meeting. So from this shenanigan, I would rank Russia as currently being more important than the United States.

Yes, Putin, Trump was saying with his actions, I will be your toady as long as I get help in my elections.

Compare this with Trump’s meeting with Queen Elizabeth II. Although she’s 92, Trump kept her waiting 10 minutes in the heat.

How else do you demonstrate that you are more powerful than the Commonwealth?

As well, Trump has been late in meetings with the G7 and NATO. These nations rank no higher than the Commonwealth.

But is this as low as you can go in a world where Trump leads the US?

Why, no. I guess Romania ranks lower than the rest of the NATO alliance because Trump completely ditched a meeting with them at the most recent NATO summit. Also at the NATO summit Trump blew off meetings with NATO hopefuls, Azerbaijan, Georgia and Ukraine. These nations are seemingly lesser than NATO and the G7 nations.

All hail the new world order. Largely its the same world order but with Russia on top and not the USA. Back in the old days, allies of the US let it slip that the US was first among equals. And you cannot be both first and equal so the USA always assumed it was first. With this president, it is first in crowning Russia top dog of the Earth.

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The Power of the Call Waiting Beep

Most people have used call waiting by now. You know, you’re talking to someone then someone else phones you, too. You hear a beep and you can switch between the first caller and the second caller. Why am I walking you through this? Because call waiting has another feature to it that I never realized could be used for my ends.

That beep that tells you there is a second caller only beeps on one phone. Of course it has to or both sides would click away from each other and never find each other again as the person who didn’t receive the call would have inadvertently hung up.

But that lack of a beep for the one party is a power thing that I never noticed. You don’t need a beep. You could simply say you heard a beep and its someone calling about something important. Thus you have a ready made excuse to get rid of the other caller.

But why would I possibly get rid of my first caller under false circumstances? Well if they are a blowhard that just rambles on and on, that might be a good enough reason right there. I think in the future I might use this call waiting power imbalance for precisely this purpose.

But how do I know there are no audible beeps when you are the first caller talking to your friend? Why because I have lost a call waiting face off many times.

Wait! Am I a blowhard that just rambles on and on?

Of course not. My stories are always interesting. Aren’t they?

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