Turning Off the News

Many times I’ve heard from people that they had stopped watching or reading the news. What stops these people from keeping up with current events? Inevitably it is the same reason. They don’t like watching something that is so negative. The scary, depressing bent of the news is why they feel they must turn it off and do something different.

I’ve been thinking of turning off the news for an entirely different reason. It’s because of the obvious, horrible puns they put in news stories. It just offends my comic nature. Not only do they come up with every obvious pun, but they also seem way too pleased with their work. I can’t stand it. The only way this will change is if the entire news industry changes. Barring that, I feel I must go on strike against the news as it is.

Not only do they come up with these obvious puns, but they race to get the story first so they can be the first to make these horrible puns. Remember Lois Lane? She risked her life every month or so, causing Superman to have to rescue her, all so she could get the scoop. Why was the scoop so prized? Well there were two reasons. One reason was she would get the esteem of her colleagues. But the second reason was so she could share her horrible puns with the rest of the world.

What causes otherwise perfectly good reporters to push their puns on an unsuspecting public? Well it’s because they keep hearing that the news is so negative. It’s too scary and depressing to many people. So the reporter hears what they want to hear. They think that a few horrible puns will lighten the mood and not turn off so many people.

But instead of this being a full solution to the problem, they have managed to push me away. Myself, a person who can handle the negativeness of the news, gets turned away by the horrible puns. I know that the reporters aren’t going to change. So the only alternative I have is to ignore the news from now on. My comedic sensibility can’t take it anymore.

So if you have a news story you are excited to tell someone, you are welcome to tell me. It will be news to my ears. But if you repeat the puns of the news story, too, I will instead ignore you. And please, don’t make up your own puns when you try to tell me all about it. Ask Lois Lane. You haven’t earned that right.

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You Are Psychic

I was a bit surprised that psychic Char Margolis came out with the book You Are Psychic, recently. Is she trying to give away the game of being a psychic? After all, once you know her methods can’t you just be a psychic for yourself and get rid of any outside psychics?

Then I became really excited by her book. Perhaps she is coming out with the real book of psychics where she tells us the secrets of magicians, mentalists and faith healers as well as the related secrets of psychics that we could all use to help us defraud the world in general. Then I thought about it again. The world just isn’t ready to hear all that.

As to the You Are Psychic gimmick to earn readers, I’m just not feeling it. This book just doesn’t speak to me so I’m afraid it will be a pass from me in buying it. I listen to my gut and my gut says no.

But what if it were true and I could bring out my inner psychic just by reading some book. What would I do with such all encompassing power?

Well I don’t know what all I would do, but I can tell you the first thing I would do. I would firstly ask if Char is short for Charlotte, Charlene, Charlise or Charmaine. Or maybe it is a short form for a name that is more gender bending like Charlemagne or Charlie. Then, indeed, it might not be a short form at all but a complete name of four letters. Whatever. With all the psychic abilities Char Margolis is unleashing on this world, we will soon have an answer for this.

So, if you use some google fu to find out the secret of Char’s name, don’t tell me that. Pretend you have psychic abilities and I am missing out on reading this step by step psychic guide. After all, maybe this book would speak to me if I bought the Audible version.

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Simple Rock vs Prog Rock

Gene Simmons, a stalwart of simplicity, via his band Kiss, has pronounced his brand of simple rock as being harder to come up with than the more complex stylings of prog rock. He says it’s harder to come up with a memorable simple song than a flashy prog rock song. We are left to take him at his word because he doesn’t really present proof of his position.

I disagree because of all of the Kiss songs I would hear growing up (three of my siblings really liked Kiss and played them all the time), all I can remember of these are the songs Shout it Out Loud, Rock and Roll All Night, and I Was Made for Loving You. Kiss had 16 albums back then and all I can remember are 3 songs.

I was into Yes (a prog band) and had no problem remembering that band’s songs. Roundabout was more memorable than any Kiss song. Going for the One had memorable steel guitar which is a totally different approach to this instrument than what is done in country music. Don’t Kill the Whale had synthesizer sounds that were whale like. Owner of a Lonely Heart had a sound that was like a whole orchestra being kicked. To me, Yes was always more memorable than Kiss.

If the simple songs of Kiss were so memorable, why was it necessary for Kiss to use the gimmick of extreme makeup for their members? Why was it necessary to have such a big stage show? Was it that Kiss felt their music wasn’t enough on its own to entertain an audience?

Yes fans knew that their heroes wouldn’t be jumping and cavorting across the stage. After all, they had complex music coming from their instruments that they had to play well for their audience. So they stood there and played (impressively) and that was enough for their audiences.

I would like to make the case for complex music. There are only three parts to music. That is volume, pitch and time. That’s all. Volume is obvious. Time can mean time signature, syncopation and accent (Reggae has the accent on the second beat instead of the first). The rest is pitch. This may sound complex but music treats octaves as being identical. So there are only 12 notes. With only 12 notes, complexity should be praised, because it’s so rare.

So as usual, I don’t see things the same as Gene Simmons. I’m pleased with that.

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I never heard of the EGOT till the TV show 30 Rock. But I’ve heard of it multiple places since so I think it snuck into the vernacular since then. It is an acronym of the Emmy, Grammy, Oscar and Tony awards, the so called ultimate in American awards sweeping. Only 19 people have one including Whoopi Goldberg and Elton John.

But one of these awards ain’t kind of the same. One of the awards is different. As you might guess from my title, I would kick the weak sister of these four awards to the curb. I would get rid of the Tony awards. No it’s not a a lack of respect to the live theatre. It’s quite simply the fact that the Tony award is way too local and not fair to other parts of America.

I’ve been trying to find if other productions not in New York City are eligible for Tonys and I can’t find it said definitively. Perhaps someone with better google fu can find it for me. I thought the following was definitive for the last couple days then read it again today and realize it’s not either. It says: “Legitimate theatrical productions opening in any of the 41 eligible Broadway theatres during the current season may be considered for Tony nominations.” I just realized that there may be other, non Broadway theatres that are eligible.

I think the Tony awards are being deliberately vague because they don’t want it known that they are very local awards. New York is not nearly the dominant city it once was. It’s easy to imagine a Los Angeles or Chicago or San Francisco or Boston being able to support 1 or a number of live theatres that are as good as those 41 eligible Broadway ones.

Besides, there’s something fulfilling about saying these performance greats are EGO winners, with each letter capitalized. It just fits, you know. Isn’t performing all about the EGO.

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To a Quieter Future

I will not be sad when motorcycles become quieter electric vehicles. Too many times they have loudly shaken the street I’m on, just to get from point A to point B. My entreaties to make them use mufflers that actually work, have fallen on deaf ears. I wonder why those ears are deaf?

If we also take out loud sports cars and trucks, then so be it. I would like to hear them become electric vehicles, too. There is already an ad on TV where the one kid is making “Vroom, Vroom,” sounds while the other is making quieter “Woosh,” sounds instead while they are playing with toy cars.

It’s not just me either. People near highways and expressways can let out a sigh of relief. A sigh that they might actually be able to hear. To a quieter future, I toast.

If it doesn’t come to pass naturally, I say we legislate riders off of loud motorbikes and onto quieter EVs. If they must use loud motorbikes lets legislate that they only do so on private tracks, far, far away from the public roads that they are currently the scourge of. We could do the same for the trucks and sports cars that also pollute the environment with loud sounds.

It is the May long weekend, up here in Canada. In my youth, the holiday Monday was simply known as fireworks day. For the longest time it was the only day in the year that fireworks were allowed to be set off. There is Canada Day, now, and Diwali in my city of Kitchener, Ontario, when fireworks are allowed.

Anyone should know that these days are tough on animals, like dogs, cats, rabbits, hamsters, horses, monsters, etc. They are even more scary to most animals than big rumbles of thunder.

It may be more expensive right now, but there is an alternative to fireworks that doesn’t spook animals. It is fleets of lit up drones that can form all sorts of shapes and exciting aerial patterns. Do you like watching airshows? This can be very much like that only with many more participants all across the the sky. These drones fly in relative silence and can do many entertaining things.

It is my hope that all fireworks will one day be replaced by drone shows. I believe they will one day be cheaper than the fireworks displays. Again, if it doesn’t happen naturally, we can legislate it into effect. To a quieter future, I toast once again.

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Do You Really Want to Live to 100?

One of my life goals was always to live to 100. More and more people are doing so. Why not me? Well this is a common area of interest, so much so, that it has brought people to study this. Researchers have discovered so called blue zones around the world where people routinely live to 100. The first researchers say that they are called blue zones because they started circling the areas in blue. Personally, I think it is a dig at older ladies and their blue hair.

Is it worth living to 100? After all if you are in severe pain from 80 to 100, would you really want to live those extra years? Similarly, if your last 20 years were spent confined to your bed, would you really want those extra years? I think most people would join me in saying no, it wouldn’t be worth it. So living to 100 may actually be conditional on the quality of life.

But the people in the blue zones live long and healthy lives, They have good physical health till almost the end. That does indeed sound like a long life worth living. And with many people in the area living to 100, they still have their peers living a long life with them. So I bet they aren’t that lonely, either. Still one thing makes me wonder if living to 100 would be worth it.

You see, all these blue zones have another thing in common. They all eat a lot of beans.

Yeah, beans. The musical fruit. The more you eat the more you toot.

Kids laugh it off when they toot. They find humour in it. But imagine tooting all the time, as an adult. The volume might inhibit you at meditation, during musical events, or just when you are intent on hearing what people are saying. Most annoying of all are the ones with terrible smell. How are you supposed to keep any friendship intact when you both fart something fierce around each other? The humour would wear thin after decades of this. How would marriage last through too many and too smelly farts?

Yes you could plug your nose somehow. But I’ve heard that healthwise you are supposed to breathe through your nose. So blue zone folk would breathe through their noses no matter how offensive the farts of their brethren might be.

And if all the world was a blue zone, munching away on our beans, wouldn’t we be producing more methane than the atmosphere could handle? Methane is the gas we produce when tooting and it is a stronger greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide. So if the earth became one large blue zone, climate change would be even more drastic,

Maybe we should just stick to living to a less smelly eighty years old.

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Alliteration is the use of the same starting letter in a name or a phrase. I like to think of it as being a literature because it seems the further away from literature you are, the more it is likely to be used.

Alliteration has a real cartoony feel. Like in Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Mickey Mouse, Porky Pig. Pierre Poilievre, etc. So it is used in many more cartoon characters than I have mentioned.

It is also commonly used in Marvel comics for names of characters. Like Peter Parker, J. Jonah Jameson, Bruce Banner, Daredevil, Green Goblin, etc.

A literature buff might argue that these sets of names are far away from literature, and in fact, a bit tacky.

Literature has relegated sounds to the tackiness scrap heap before. Do you like to rhyme words? Don’t do it in literature’s poetry. That has been out for over a century.

Instead, if you must rhyme, stick to writing lyrics for music or lyrics for a rap piece. Freestyle rap is after all, just a rhyming contest.

The only poems I’ve seen that still use rhyme are genre poems for science fiction and some of the poems in the Lord of the Rings. These poems are definitely not under the literature banner.

I sometimes find alliteration and rhyming fun. In sticking to its guns, literature, in this regards, is against fun. Maybe not being literature is a thing to be proud of.

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Las Leaders

Los leaders of Los Angeles and Las Vegas have just started to build a high speed train line between the two cities. The bullet train that it could carry, would exceed speeds of 300 km/ h. This would be a first for the entire United States. They hope to have it up and running by the 2028 Olympics which are in Los Angeles.

This new los line is estimated to cost 12 billion dollars. Why do I insist on calling it a las line? I do because it’s the first of its kind in the United States and such projects usually go over budget. I don’t see why this would be an exception.

Las Vegas, especially, might strongly object to my calling it the los line. Especially when its reason for existence is gambling. Potential gamblers might see this as a bad sign for their gambling and might not go there. The big casinos in Vegas might see it as a bad sign for business.

But then again, Las Vegas has always had las in its title and has done just fine for itself. Superstition, because of the name, might be why cool people shorten the name to Vegas. It gets rid of the las.

In California, a high speed rail line had been approved by voters in 2008, linking Los Angeles to San Francisco. But disputes and unforeseen costs have tripled the cost to 105 billion dollars. We’ll see if they actually make this work. If they do, they might call this the saint line. Mainly because the usual taxpayer has to be a saint to end up paying for this.

Since I’m now on the topic of Spanish saints, is it a coincidence that Santa Claus could mean a female Spanish saint with the name Claus? That’s right, Santa Claus may be non binary. Certainly Santa hits most of the notes that would make him a saint. Maybe he’s telling us with his name that he is feminine in ways, too.

You may ask, what about Mrs. Claus? Look if we don’t know Santa’s deal, then how are we to know Mrs. Claus’s deal?

So there you go. I am trying to end more than one fairy tale for you in this post.

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Punch Up

I keep shaking my head when I hear comedians lamenting the idea of political correctness. They are worried about being cancelled for coming up with a joke that is not politically correct. Note also that political correctness comes from a spot of authority and that these comedians are punching up whenever they lambaste political correctness. So they can punch up if they want to.

Punching down has been done for millennia and is rarely novel or even nice. Punching down is something someone who fancies himself as a wit would do. Not only that but this method of comedy has basically been mined out. Jokes like this are just minor variations on the same old themes. I don’t know why some comedians see this as a now forbidden gold mine for jokes.

So how do these comedians punch up? Political cartoons have been anti authority for many years. Some of it is indeed punching down. But the majority is anti politician, or those who have real power, and is punching up.

Chris Rock does a wonderful job of punching up when he takes on the old “There’s just a few bad apples in policing” line. He basically says we don’t tolerate a few bad apples in piloting airplanes. You can view the original video here. That’s an excellent example of punching up and being funny while doing it. Punching up may have just as much comedy gold as punching down ever did.

Plus you can also try to punch sideways and maybe get some of your peers. Warning, they may try to get you back. That’s the thing about your peers.

And what about comedy where no one is punched. Uranus may be tired of being the butt of all jokes about the solar system, but really, Uranus could care less and will continue to function just the same as always.

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How to Make Yourself Look Sunburned

I sometimes watch daytime television and sometimes it is interesting. Sometimes it is about things I don’t care about – like makeup tips. So why do I watch this anyway? I like to see the before and after and rate whether the model looks hotter or less so after the makeup transformation. I would like to share one with you that I think does the model a disservice in making her look less hot.

This is a makeup transformation that I’ve just seen recently, and seen worn just recently. I want to advise against it. Perhaps my criticism will be early enough that this doesn’t become a big trend.

This is the so called how to wear blush if you have a round or square face. This is like half the faces out there. The only other ones they mention in the article are heart shaped and long faces.

In a nutshell they say to apply the blush above the apple of the cheek, as the bottom of the C that goes around your eye and the top of the C is on your forehead,

Do you know what else touches these areas of the face? Sunshine from above. From the title of this post, you can guess that I think this looks like a bad sunburn. You would be correct.

Perhaps you would enjoy having the make believe power to very lightly touch a woman’s face and she winces in pain and pulls back from you?

I don’t want this power. And I especially don’t want to kiss a woman on the cheek and have a layer of her cheek stick to my lips because of peeling. I guess I’m just not Jeffrey Dahmer enough for this style of makeup.

Maren Morris just wore this style of makeup to the Kelly Clarkson show, She is married so perhaps it is a bid to keep her husband off of her. “Can’t you see that I’m sunburned and can’t have anyone touching me right now?” I imagine her saying.

I hate this style and hope it dies a swift death, By the way, if some women are really trying to keep their husbands off of them, the only way this could possibly look like more of a sunburn is if the nose had blush on it, too.

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