Monday, October 22, 2012

It's Official: The End Is Near.

It has to be, when you wake up to a headline like this one:

"First Human Ancestor Looked Like a Squirrel."

You can find the item over at the Discovery News site.

http://news.discovery.com/animals/first-human-ancestor-squirrel-121018.html#mkcpgn=rssnws1

Apparently scientists have discovered the fossilized bones of the first known primate, a tiny critter known as Purgatorius.  (I've never heard a more apt name for a pest.)  Purgatorius lived in trees and had interesting ankle bones that let it hang on to branches with its feet.   The article includes an "artist's conception" of what the little rotter looked like.  They even gave it a fluffy tail.

What I can't figure out is, how did this primitive squirrel survive without attics to chew their way into?

And why oh why hasnt' anyone figured out time travel yet?  So I can go back to the Paleocene era and MURDER ALL THE LITTLE F*CKERS??

Thursday, October 11, 2012

The Year of Faith

Yes!  It opens today! It's nothing but faith, faith, faith from here on in!

In order to observe this Year of Faith more faithfully I signed up for one of those "read-the-catechism-in-a-year" email deals.  By this time next year I should be one hell of a well-catechized Catholic.  Which I'm sure will be a much easier thing to be than an actually better Catholic, so I should be able to pull this off.

For those of you who have not gotten today's email, allow me to summarize.  Life in this world, just like back in the old Baltimore Catechism days, is all about knowing, loving and serving God.  It's also about spreading the word of the Gospel to the whole world.  This is called "catechesis," and every Catholic is called to participate in it.

If you are like me the mere idea of sharing the Gospel with your neighbors is enough to make you cringe.  I am the sort of person who can barely say Grace with strangers without wanting to dive under the table.  It's not embarrassment, mind you:  it's just that when I  talk to God I don't want anyone else listening in.  I mean, come on.  It's a private conversation.

So some of us have to look for alternative ways of evangelizing.

 Bumper stickers are an obvious choice.  Especially now in the political season, a pro-life or pro-marriage bumper sticker tells the world where you stand, and if you live in a neighborhood like mine, also offers a convenient path to martyrdom.  Getting vandalized definitely counts as martyrdom in my book, or at least in my checkbook.   Why only last week a man hurled a pole at my car and screamed some choice epithets at me as I drove past with my "Vote 'Yes' on the Marriage Amendment" bumper sticker in full view.  Luckily he missed the driver's side window, but he dented the passenger door and chipped the  paint.  See?  Instant martyr credit.  (Note to self:  remember to call insurance agent.)

Ditto lawn signs.  I still can't believe my "Vote 'Yes'" sign is still in my front yard.  Some of my friends have been through three or four signs by now, and the election's still three weeks away.

T-shirts are tricky.  I'm not sure it would be wise to wear my "Vote Yes' shirt while walking my black labrador around the lake.  My chihuahua, though, that's a different story. She'd be much more likely to protect me if someone decided to take exception to my attire.  I'll have to think about this.

Anybody else got any ideas?  Send 'em along.  Let's get this Year of Faith rolling.
 


Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Victory Is Mine

Or almost. A matter of days at most. I prepare the victory feast even as we speak.

Victory over parasites. Victory over the hated invaders.

Victory over the squirrels!!!!

Yes, it's so close I can taste it. New roof? Check. ("A lot of squirrel damage, lady. I don't know how the shingles stayed up there.") Oak trees trimmed? Starts this week. And for good measure today I talk to a "wildlife management" specialist. Formerly referred to as an "exterminator."

Isn't that a beautiful word? EX TER MIN A TOR. Powerful yet succinct. Gotta love it.

And I dream of a squirrel-free attic at last. Oh bliss. Oh carnage! OK, relocation. They're not actually allowed to kill the squirrels. They move them 16 miles away, which apparently is farther than even the canniest homing squirrel can manage. I'll settle for "deportation." Has a nice, evil ring to it. Or maybe "transportation." As in, to Botany Bay.

Which I believe is located somewhere in Wisconsin.

Monday, April 30, 2012

Bin Laden' s Anniversary!

This clip cracks me up every time.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Gay NYPD Officer "Confused," "Conflicted"

"I'm confused," says probationary sergeant Michael Fox of the New York City Police Department. "My lieutenant says I'm 'not a real cop' if I don't, and I quote, 'lay hands on people.' Lay hands on people? What is he trying to do, get me sued? That's all I need!"

"As police officers we commonly have to lay our hands on people," says another cop who prefers to remain anonymous. "I can't tell you the number of body parts I've grabbed in my career. But Mike-- well, geez. Where can he grab a guy and not get sued for sexual harassment? Or worse?"

"You grab a hand here, a waistline there, maybe sometimes a little farther south," said another anonymous officer. "For most of us cops it's just routine. But what if poor Mike had to grab a perp by the nether regions? Some slimy lawyer could bankrupt the whole city!"

"Our brother officer clearly has the best interests of the Department at heart," said another source. "My son is in kindergarten, and believe you me the first thing they're taught is 'keep your hands to yourself.' You know that book, 'Everything I Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten?' Mike's a guy who has mastered the technique. That shows real maturity!"

It has never been easy to be a police officer. It has never been easy to be a minority cop. We must all be sensitive to the issue. And now let us reflect on the lessons of the day.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Pray for Bo



Lifted from Ace of Spades HQ.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Zyrtec: Curse or Menace?

Welcome spring, or as we highly allergic to pollen types call it, Zombie Season.

This is the time of year when blossoms appear on the trees. bright green grasses begin to poke their way out of the soil, and yours truly stocks up on tissues, Zyrtec, and those anti-itching eyedrop things. Each of which represents a mixed blessing.

Especially Zyrtec. In Zombie Season I have basically two choices: I can a) not take the Zyrtec, die from lack of oxygen or b) take the Zyrtec and live, but only if you call slouching around in a perpetual fog "living."

The fog is made worse by the sudden attacks of falling asleep on one's feet. And the falling asleep is made worse by the psychotic nightmares I get whenever I take one of these anti-allergy drugs.

And I mean, totally psycho. Axe murderers, serial killers, retellings of the John Barleycorn legend. (Those are the worst.) I wonder if Alfred Hitchcock had springtime allergies. I bet he did.

Anyway, if you happen to bump into me on the street and I have a certain glazed look, at least know you know why. It's nothing personal. It's pollen.

I should have that made into a tee shirt.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Questions No One is Asking About Obama's Dog- Eating

1. How many carbs are in a dog? Does it vary by breed?

2. Couldn't he just have stuck with tofu? Same appeal.

3. Bone-in or boneless? Hey, it makes a difference in pork chops.

4. When Obama says "I have a bone to pick with you," does everybody run for cover?

5. Was dessert a dog biscuit? (only if you're English.)

6. Did he have the traditional Yule Dog last Christmas?

7. Is this the perfect dinner music, or what? (youmay have to watch an ad first)

Friday, March 30, 2012

The Killing Fields

We are enjoying an unusually early spring here in Minnesota. Everyone is itching to get out and start their gardens. Except me. I am a terrible gardener. Things die, what can I say. Call me Black Thumb.

But even I was eager to get started early this year, so yesterday I went out and bought me a big ol' jug of Roundup. I remember thinking only a week ago how nice it was that the crocuses were planning an early showing, but those crocuses have nothing on the weeds. My front "lawn" is verdant with them. Including that really rotten one that's impossible to get rid of-- the name escapes me but believe me dandelions are better behaved.

I spent a happily destructive hour spraying the weeds in my retaining wall and in between the cracks in the sidewalk. Then I turned to the weeds that were already choking the irises. At some point I ran ot of Roundup and had to use the rest of last year's Weed Be Gone.

It felt wonderful, laying waste to most of my yard. I can't wait to see the whole palce wither and die. And this time, I can say it was all by design.

Yeah. Power is good.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Earl Scruggs, RIP

Y'all know the tune. Thanks to the greatest banjo man.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Healthy Eating Update

America, I hereby declare you free of the scourge of the Turkey Burger.

We've all been there. You want a burger. A fat, juicy, beefy burger with fries on the side and a lot of ketchup. Maybe a draft beer, in a frosted glass. Yeah....

So you call a friend or two, tell them to meet you at Joe's, jump into your car and head for your fix. But something happens along the way. The little voice of conscience and waistband says, "Don't do it, Desperate. Don't eat the enemy. Have something healthy instead. How about a turkey burger? Not really what you had in mind but you can pretend. Yes. Order the turkey burger. And forget the Stella, make that a Diet Coke."

And you cave. You abandon your dreams. No Cheeseburger in Paradise for you. Just a turkey burger in the loser's column.

Last summer I thought I'd found the solution. There is one place I've been to that sells a -- brace yourself- turkey burger that is actually delicious. I know, I know. I thought it was a hoax too. But the waitress assured me, nothing but turkey here. Real burger deliciousness in a healthy, waist0conscious package. Woo hoo!

Well. All dreams must end, I suppose.

The other night we were once again at this eatery that I thought was going to save me ten pounds this summer. But we- the spouse and I- made the mistake of chatting with the waitress before we ordered, and the subject of the turkey burger came up.

"Yes, isn't it fabulous?" she gushed. "We sell a lot of those."

But what makes them so fabulous, we asked?

She glanced around. "It's all turkey," she whispered. "We grind the meat ourselves. But--"

We held our breath.

"-- we add the skin of the bird to the meat. It makes it so juicy!"

So there you have it: the secret to "healthy" food is it only tastes great if it's actually sickeningly unhealthy.

As I said. You are now free to roam around the menu. And have the Stella. I hear people who drink diet soda are as fat as the rest of us.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Malia Obama in Mexico

I just came across this story. It seems the First Daughter-- along with 12 of her closest friends-- has gone to spend spring break in Mexico. (She is 13, by the way. I guess that's too young for Fort Lauderdale, but the right age for Mexico.)

This is in the midst of a ton of warnings that Mexico is a dangerous place to be if you're an American.

I have to tell you, it's really not important to me where the kid spends her break. But what is important is that if you're going to go to a place as dangerous as Mexico, you need adequate protection.

Which in this case means 25- TWENTY FIVE- U.S. Secret Service agents guarding the girls.

And me? I'm happy to foot the bill. After all I'm only a taxpayer. But that girl's an Obama!

p.s.-- Psst! Malia. You think any of your prep school pals can score me some nice pottery? I'll be waiting.

Monday, March 19, 2012

St Patrick's Day

Wha...? No. Monday already?

Geez, it must have been a great St Patrick's Day.

So--happy St Joseph's Day, everybody! Eat cannolis whenever possible.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Planned Parenthood: Totally Educational!

Via The jawa Report. See the link for the mugshot!

The president and CEO of the Planned Parenthood abortion business in Lubbock, Texas was arrested yesterday for indecent exposure at a local baseball field where children play.

As KCBD reports, “According to Lubbock Police, Tony Ray Thornton, 56, was arrested at the baseball fields inside of Mackenzie Park. According to the incident report, Thornton was taken into custody at 3:25 Monday afternoon. He was booked into the Lubbock County Detention Center and released from jail Tuesday morning around 11 a.m.”

The news station reports that Thornton has worked with the abortion business for several years and the Lubbock Planned Parenthood has had its share of problems.

Previously, the Planned Parenthood facility in Lubbock, Texas threw away medical records in a trash bin outside the building.

Wednesday, March 07, 2012

The Fluke Family's Finest Hour

Last week Georgetown University Law student Sandra Fluke told members of Congress about the terrible burden of being forced to pay for her own contraception. Several media outlest reported that, a day later, President Obama called Ms. Fluke and said, "Your parents must be proud of you."

Desperate Irish Housewife caught up with Ma and Pa Fluke earlier today. They were happy to talk about their now celebrity-status offspring.

"Of course we've always been proud of our Sandra. She's a sweet, clever girl." Mrs. Fluke, obviously emotional, smiled bravely. "But when she testified before that subcommittee or whatever it was, well, I've never been more proud of my daughter, never."

"Me neither." Mr. Fluke could not contain himself. The man was beaming, the very picture of the proud papa. "Three thousand dollars for contraception? Do you realize how many, er, dates my little girl must get? I'd say she's got them lining up around the block!"

"Now, dear, don't be boastful." Mrs. Fluke gave our reporter a modest smile. "But after all, she is her mother's daughter."

"She's daddy's little girl!" Mr Fluke pulled a cigar out of his coat pocket. "I knew she'd inherited my brains, but my gift for seduction too? I used to see some action like nobody's business, I can tell you. Ah, the good old days! But now I see I've passed on the torch to the next generation. I'm telling you, my cup runneth over. What a daughter!"

Desperate observed Sandra had apparently inherited her mother's good looks as well.

Mrs Fluke blushed. "Now that, I have to admit I am just a teensy bit proud of. My daughter is 30 years old and she can still convince the media she's a 23-year-old coed. And I haven't even treated her to an eyelid lift yet! Imagine what she'll look like when she's my age!"

And Mrs. Fluke's age is....

"39," she snapped. "I had Sandra when I was 16. 16 plus 23, that's 39, buster."

But I thought she got her Bachelor's degree in 2003. At least that's what Wikipedia says.

"Correct. She was a very precocious child. She finished college when she was just a slip of a girl. Barely fourteen."

"Oh, was she ever precocious," Papa Fluke broke in. "Why, she was dating when she was ten. She learned fast, boy. Mother, do you remember the night she came home at 3 am and asked if we had any--"

"Oh, now, let's not bore our guest with every little story," Mrs Fluke hastened to interrupt her husband. "Besides, that's the past. We are looking forward to a bright future for our daughter! She's already been on 'The View,' you know. Can 'Ellen' be far behind?"

"And that's just chat shows," Mr Fluke said. "She's getting offers from Eliot Spitzer! That's hard news."

Um...wasn't Spitzer's show cancelled?

The Flukes looked surprised. "There must be some mistake. Sandra says she got an offer from the man. The show must be back on the air."

Um... Well. Best of luck to you both. And your daughter.

"Our daughter is the luckiest girl in the world," Mrs. Fluke beamed.

Mr Fluke could not agree more. "And she just keeps on getting lucky, every day."

Tuesday, March 06, 2012

Super!

Today is Super Tuesday, and in honor of the day Desperate had decided to have the super-est Tuesday possible.

The challenge, of course, is obvious. Tuesday? Not Friday or even Wednesday? How the heck do you turn the second day of the week into the stuff of super-ness?

The second day of the week, mind you. Lacking even the negative cachet of Monday. Ever hear any songs about "Tuesday, Tuesday" or "Welcome to the [second day of] the Working Week?" No? Me neither.

And ask yourself, who is a bigger part of American culture, Tuesday Weld or Wednesday Adams? Again, the answer is obvious.

So why is the Tuesday Super? Well, as you know, it's all the primaries. Ohio, baby! Glad for the attention at any time. Oklahoma, where the wind comes sweepin' down the plains in the form of tornadoes and robocalls. Vermont, home of tens of thousands of cows and the saying "hard cheese on New Hampshire." Massachusetts, where yours truly once resided. Virginia, another old stomping ground. And a host of other states including one or two where she wouldn't be caught dead.

There are over four hundred delegates up for grabs today. Four hundred. Is that super enough for you?

Only if they're running Athens, I hear you snicker. You classicists. You're so zany sometimes.

Well, okay, so on the surface of it none of this sounds very super. But that's democracy for you. We have to make the best of what we've got. Even if it's not the most exciting field in the world.

But once again, that's democracy for you. You want excitement? Go to Athens and try out your "400" jokes. I hear all those desperate protesters have a wonderful sense of humor.

Thursday, March 01, 2012

Andrew Breibart, RIP

This is awful news. For all of us.

From today's breitbart,com:

Andrew passed away unexpectedly from natural causes shortly after midnight this morning in Los Angeles.

We have lost a husband, a father, a son, a brother, a dear friend, a patriot and a happy warrior.

Andrew lived boldly, so that we more timid souls would dare to live freely and fully, and fight for the fragile liberty he showed us how to love.

Andrew recently wrote a new conclusion to his book, Righteous Indignation:

I love my job. I love fighting for what I believe in. I love having fun while doing it. I love reporting stories that the Complex refuses to report. I love fighting back, I love finding allies, and—famously—I enjoy making enemies.

Three years ago, I was mostly a behind-the-scenes guy who linked to stuff on a very popular website. I always wondered what it would be like to enter the public realm to fight for what I believe in. I’ve lost friends, perhaps dozens. But I’ve gained hundreds, thousands—who knows?—of allies. At the end of the day, I can look at myself in the mirror, and I sleep very well at night.

Andrew is at rest, yet the happy warrior lives on, in each of us.

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Hello, Georgetown? I'd Like A JD and a Box of Condoms, Please

Well, either Georgetown has lowered its standards or this girl had a friend on the acceptance committee. That's the only explanation I can think of. 'We expected our standards to be met," or whatever? Is Miss Fluke really that divorced from reality?

Sorry. Desperate just had to let off a little disbelief there.

When Miss Fluke testified before congress about how hard things were for fornicating female students at Georgetown Law Center, she said a few things that were truly moving. As in, "This moves me never to hire this chick as my lawyer." One of her fellow students, Miss Fluke said, felt "embarassed' and "powerless" when she learned her birth control was not covered by insurance. I am sure the poor girl had to flee the drugstore in tears.

Um...honey? If you take on a tax case and the IRS says "We don't think we're going to pay you," do you have another tactic up your sleeve? I mean, besides the "You hurt my feelings" gambit. Which I am told does not cut much ice with the Feds.

And the woman who feared G'towns policy, by forcing her to shell out for her own contraceptives, was going to deprive her dear old mother of the longed-for grandbabies. But I'm pretty sure it's the law degree and the ten years of postponed child-bearing that will take care of that. So yes, in a way her mother can hold Georgetown accountable for her loneliness in her old age.

You hear that, Georgetown? You hate old ladies. You heartless bounders.

So what do you think, should we take up a collection?

Buy a law student a condom today!
Do you really want them making little lawyers?

Monday, February 27, 2012

Oscars

Do forgive Desperate for not watching the Oscars last night. There were just too many more interesting things to do. Watching paint dry, for example. Contemplating the laundry pile. Pressing all the little buttons on the dishwasher just to see what would happen.

No, I didn't watch the Oscars. Come to think of it I only saw a handful of the films that were nominated. The only one I was really sure about was Best animated Picture. "Rango" was nominated. I saw "Rango." What a loser. No way would "Rango" win best animated, I thought.

Oh, well. Another prediction down the drain.

So from what I hear "Best Picture" went to a movie nobody saw , which was a pretty darn clever move on the part of the Academy if you ask me. I mean, how can anyone complain if nobody saw the picture? Now they all have to pretend they saw it, and act enigmatic if anyone asks what they think. Really, Hollywood isn't usually this smart.

Meryl Streep won Best Actress for "Iron Lady." I like Meryl Streep, but I also Like Lady Thatcher, so I skipped seeing that one, too.

But this brings up another problem. The Academy Award is for "Best Actress," but if you ask any woman who acts what she does for a living, she will reply "I'm an actor." Nobody's an "actress" any more. I think "actress" is now supposed to be demeaning, or something.

So here's my question: If a woman gets the "Best Actress" award and then goes around telling everyone she's an "actor," does she have to return her Oscar? I mean, isn't that only fair?

Or do we just chalk it up to the old somebody's-asleep-at-the-old-language-switch thing? You know, like February being "Black History Month" instead of African-American History Month, or People of Color History Month? Hmm? What about that, hmm?

Really. The insensitivity.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Jeremy Lin Should Watch His Step

The hateful hate of Jeremy Lin haters is hateful. I hate it. How dare a sports network use a phrase like "Chink in the armor" when Mr Lin is even in shouting distance? Disgraceful. Hate that.

Thank God the Asian American Journalists Association has issued some guidelines for anyone writing about Mr Lin. The guidelines include such helpful suggestions as "avoid nicknames like 'Grasshopper' " and "no cracks about Asians and driving." Journalists will still be permitted to use basketball terms like "full court press," but not if they're going to stoop to jokes about Chinese laundries and starch in the collars.

I for one feel better just knowing these guidelines are out there.

But I'm sure we'd all breathe a little easier if Mr Lin would observe a few guidelines himself. You know, just to save us from ourselves.

For example, should he decide to grow a mustache, Mr Lin should stick to the horseshoe, the handlebar or the pencil. A Fu Manchu is out of the question. It would just make trouble.

Mr. Lin should also avoid demonstrating any musical talents that involve "Piano for Beginners." A performance of "Chopsticks" would be, shall we say, awkward.

Also would he please avoid references to Pepsodent toothpaste. And don't tell me you don't know why.

Finally, if he is a fan of classic tv, would he please keep it out of his conversation. You never know when this will come up:

Thursday, February 23, 2012

The Wisdom of Chris Matthews

At a President's Day panel in Washington, D.C. the other day, newsman Chris Matthews explained the main reason people are entering the Catholic Church today: bigotry against gays. "If you're really anti-gay," he said, "you become a Catholic now."

And hasn't that always been the way, Chris? A regular haven for gay-haters, the Catholic Church is. Why, when Oscar Wilde converted on his death bed the one thing he wanted the world to know what how much he hated homosex-

Oh wait....

Okay. Screw Wilde. Look at Evelyn Waugh. Another convert who was obviously a gay-hater. The way he made the gay Anthony Blanche in "Brideshead, Revisited" the only who always told the truth no matter how ugly it was, well, that just shows how much Waugh despised---

Uh, well, um....

Tony Blair! Yeah, Tony Blair! Christopher Hitchens said that Blair only had a few homosexuals in his government. Only. A. Few. Is that proof, or what?

And Lola Falana? What, you think some straight guy designed all her costumes? Don't make me laugh. If any Catholic convert ever had a right to bear a grudge it was Lola.

And what about Vincent Price? He was a convert too, you know. Does anyone really believe Egghead hated Batman and Robin and guys in tights generally because they were crime fighters? You are sooooooo naive!

Thank you, Chris! Once again you have pointed the way to the truth. By the way- you've seen someone about the leg, right? Those tingles can be a sign of trouble to come, you know.

Hey- once again, you were the first to let us know!

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Good News: Santorum Wrong! Satan Not Targeting America!

"It's absurd. It's not relevant."

In an interview earlier today Satan denied that he had targeted the United States of America as a frontrunner for an addition to his Kingdom.

"Look, Santorum gave that speech in 2008," he said. "Okay, maybe I was having thoughts in that direction back then. But this is 2012. Al Gore has his own tv network. Chris Matthews still has a job. And 'Rango' is an Oscar nominee, for you-know-who's sake. I mean come on, what more could I possibly want?"

The Prince of Darkness waved a hand at his office window. The view is truly stunning, offering glimpses of the New York skyline, the Hollywood Hills , the quaint English village of St Mary Mead and United Airlines lounge at Chicago O'Hare. "The world at my feet, and a pipsqueak like Rick Santorum thinks he can stir up trouble. Honestly."

Exactly what sort of trouble, we asked, might Mr Santorum intend to stir up?

"Oh, you know, the usual. Sanctity of human life, free exercise of religion, that kind of thing. But what's to worry? The guy's unelectable. Say it with me. 'Unelectable.'"

Well, we'd rather not--

"I said, SAY IT. Un. E. Lectable.' I've got everyone saying it. It's all the rage."

Actually, we're not here to--

"Oh, fine, have it your way." The Prince of This World sat back and yawned. :Like I said, I'm not worried. I've got things pretty much under control on Earth right now. There's no stopping me, kid! I am on my way!"

Pardon us, but isn't it true that prayer and fasting can undo even your awful deeds, Mr Satan?"

At the word "prayer," the Prince of Darkness shuddered. "Heresay," he muttered. "That-- that 'p' word. All my best people know it's all nonsense."

There's still fasting. And this is Lent, after all. Isn't this a cause for concern?"

"Honey. Who do you think invented the carbohydrate?" Satan laughed. "I'm irresistible, baby. I'm cocaine and champagne. I'm chocolate and foie gras. You ever hear of Fashion Week? I own that puppy."

Why Fashion Week?

"Let's just say I like to keep my hand in hemlines. Besides, you'd be surprised how easy it it to distract people with clothes. I can get people to make judgements you wouldn't believe based on the cut of a suit."

But Mr Santorum doesn't campaign in a suit.

"I know." Satan treated us to that infamous sly grin. "Who do you think sent him that sweater vest?"

Lent 2012

Aaaaand they're off!

Today Christians the world over mark the beginning of Lent, the 40-day peniential season that ends on Easter Sunday. And for us Catholics I do mean "mark," as we once again get our foreheads smudged with ash and are reminded this is where we're headed, too. It's a sacred season.

It's also a keenly competitive Catholic sport.

A. "So, what are you giving up for Lent?"
B. "Chocolate."

[Five points for toughness, zero for originality.]

B. "And you?"
A. "Chocolate." (thought racing) "And... Facebook. I'm staying off Facebook until Easter."

B. "Good for you!" (Damn! Quick: play the "techier than thou" card.) "I'm more of a Twitter person. I don't know how I'll make 40 days without posting a single Tweet, but that's my plan!"

[B now up by one point, for fast thinking: remembering to say "tweet" instead of "twit."]

A. "I think some people become slaves of all this social networking, don't you?"

[HA! Take that, Miss Twitterer!]

B. "Oh, I agree. In fact, I've decided to go back to old fashioned communication for Lent.'
A. "Phone calls?"
B. "Thank-you notes."

[S**t!]

B. "I'm having them made today. Embossed."
A. (Pounce! Pounce now!) "Oh, so you don't actually have them yet. But you've checked the printer's proofs, right? You'd hate to pay for any dumb mistakes."
B. (heart rate rising slightly) "I'm sure they'll be fine."

[The bell. To your corners.]


A. "Well. Have a terrific Lent."

[trans. 'you really need it.']

B. "You too. Have the greatest Lent ever."

[trans. "look who's talking."]

Wednesday, February 01, 2012

On Florida, via The Onion

I couldn't have said it better myself:

TAMPA, FL—Following a decisive win in tonight's Florida primary, presidential candidate Mitt Romney took a moment during his victory address to reflect on the current crop of Republicans vying for the party's nomination, telling the gathered crowd he "[had] to admit that, overall, it's a pretty weak field." "No question about it, you're looking at a bunch of duds," Romney said to his supporters, who grew silent as the former Massachusetts governor added that it was hard to imagine any of the GOP contenders, himself included, being president of the United States. "Republican voters have been dealt a crappy hand, and that's all there is to it. It's like the year the Democrats had Michael Dukakis and Gary Hart—maybe even worse. To be perfectly honest, our party's in a weird, transitional phase right now. We don't really know who we are, what we stand for, or what it is we're even trying to do. On the other hand, in 2016, we should be stacked: Paul Ryan, Chris Christie, Mitch Daniels. Lot of great options there. This year is garbage, though, and I sincerely apologize for that. Anyway, off to Nevada." Romney then exited the stage to zero applause, got into his car, and was driven to the airport.

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Florida!

Ah, Florida Primary Day. Fifty delegates in the Sunshine State up for grabs. You know it's been a long time since the last primary when you have to look up how many delegates the winner gets. Really, it's been what, ten days? Seems like ages. Sure, there's another one later in the week, but come on. Maine? As Maine goes. so goes Vermont. 'Nuf said.

Politics aside this week is a big one in the Desperate household. Yesterday marked our first day of home schooling. Yes! We have joined the ranks. To be quite honest yesterday was one long jittery day (damn online programs), but we look forward to steady improvement.

So now for our new theme song. Thank you, Tim Hawkins!

Monday, January 30, 2012

Who Is Buck Denver and Why Won't He Leave Me Alone?

Dear Phil Vischer,

Before I say anything else I want you to know: I was a huge fan of Veggie Tales. I was a proto-fan of Veggie Tales. I bought the first DVDs back when you could only get them in little Christian tchachke shops and anyone wearing a Miraculous Medal got funny looks from the kids behind the counter.

And I spread the Veggie word. I introduced my niece and nephews to VT. I gave VT videos as birthday presents. I wanted the world to know about Bob and Larry.

Well, we all know how the Veggies turned out. Or we know as much as we can know, from your book on the subject. "Bob and Larry and Me?' Was that the title? I couldn't find my copy just now to check.

It was a shame, Phil. And I feel four you.

But none of this means I am willing to put up with Buck Denver turning up on every damn web page I open.

[Readers: Buck Denver is a puppet. He stars in a new series by Mr. Vischer that introduced kids to the Bible. He is the dullest looking puppet you've ever seen, devoid of personality. He would never make it as a Muppet.]

I know, I know. You want me to buy the series. But I'm sorry, Phil. I'm just not inspired to buy it. It doesn't grab me. The problem is Buck. He looks so dull. You know what he looks like? A Mormon elder, only with a jacket on. Could he be any duller?

Put it this way: he's no Larry the Cucumber. And t doesn't help that he turns up on every web page. He's not only dull, he's pushy. I hate pushy. Larry the Cucumber was never pushy. Okay, Bob the Tomato was, sometimes, But he had Larry to put him in his place. Who does Buck have? No one I've seen so far.

So please, Phil, take you ads out of my life. When I want to read Instapundit I want Instapundit, not Buck Denver. And shoving him down my throat like this is not going to change my mind.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

This Just In

My piece on today's Marriage Matters blog, from the Minnesota Catholic Conference. Amazing the things you learn when you're doing research for a mystery!

http://marriagematters.mncc.org/2012/01/social-issues-in-tough-economies/

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Newt Thoughts

If you are not a P.G. Wodehouse fan you are probably not reading this blog.

Newt News

So tonight ABC News is planning to air an interview with Newt Gingrich's "bitter" ex-wife with the hope that it will totally derail Newt's campaign.

Apparently the former Mrs.G has been claiming since 1995 that she could "torpedo" any chance of a Gingrich White House with "a single interview." The couple divorced in 1999.

I'm not sure how many men could put up with four years of "I will destroy you, sweetheart."

J.R. and Sue Ellen came close, I guess. Then of course there's Bill and Hillary, and Ted Kennedy and-- well, just about anyone, really. I understand Thomas Jefferson got around a bit, too. Yes, our political history is littered with sterling examples of marital fidelity.

Honestly I'm not sure what to make of all this. Mitt Romney is by all accounts an exemplary family man. On the other hand, a Mormon who will cave on abortion will cave on anything.

The "pick your poison" moment is early this year.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

More Mormon Laughs

No, really. This is hilarious. I love this movie.

Note Mormon's resemblance to Bobby Hill.

Mitt Takes New Hampshire

To no one's surprise, Mitt Romney won the New Hampshire primary last night. Although I was a little surprised by the size of his win. Nearly 40 per cent? Yikes.

I wish I could say I like Mitt Romney. I want to like him. But I can't , not yet any way. I mean, think about it. A Mormon who will waffle on abortion? What next, double espressos? Really, you have to wonder where exactly does this guy stand?

While we all ponder that one, here's some more food for Mormon thought. This is one of the funniest films I have ever seen.

Wednesday, January 04, 2012

Eight is an Odd Number

Oh yes it is.

"Romney Wins Iowa Caucus by Eight Votes."

Eight votes? Are you kidding me? Not some death-defying one or two? No mystical seven or twelve? And what ever happened to 13?

All right, so Iowa's a small state. Not a lot of voters. They probably counted each other while standing in line. But eight votes, come on. What did they do, call in the Hawks Women's Volleyball team? "We need two more from the bench!" Maybe they called on the services of the mighty Iowa Writers' Workshop. "Four novelists, two biographers and a couple of memoirists! Let's go, people!"

I don't know. If this is the way it's going to be then this election cycle is going to make Hillary V. Barry look like a sweep. And we all remember how looooooong that one took.

Fine. On to New Hampshire. Hoping for improvement.

Tuesday, January 03, 2012

Maybe This Will Help

If any of my readers are wondering "what the heck is an Iowa Caucus anyway?" I like the "Native American" part. It's homey.

Happy Iowa Caucus Day

I am trying to decide how our little family will observe the Feast of the Iowa Caucus. I thought about making an Iowa-themed dinner, but all the state fairs are closed for takeout and corndogs just don't seem special enough. Although corndogs do combine corn meal and pig meat, which I understand are the national dishes of Iowa. So I'll keep them on the list.

Then of course there's Greek food. The Greeks invented democracy. I don't think they ever envisioned the caucuses starting in January and the election not until freakin' November, but still one must give credit where credit is due. So -- pastitsio? Gyros?

On the other hand, represented as it does the starting pistol of one long, long haul of campaign mailings, robocalls, and more than enough hot air to relaunch the Hindenburg, maybe the slow cooker is the most fitting approach.

It's important to celebrate the start of the campaign season. Because it won't be long before we're so sick of it all that we'll all have lost our appetites.