International Fibbing Friday

Since pensitivity101’s security clearance is higher that Top Secret, she was recently asked to be a charlady at an International Committee Conference on Averting Needless Travel Expenses from Unnecessary Conferences, held in beautiful Blechly-on-Stench.  She came out of the men’s washroom with a double-handful of foreign words that she invites us to fib about.  Since they’re politicians’ words, and already coated with lies, no-one may notice.

  1. What is an abbozzo?

This is a term that I learned from my bent-nose, ex-co-worker, Melvin Goombah.  It is the giant hug I give someone when they buy me a calzone.  I could show you a sketch that a street artist did of me embracing someone who did.

  1. What does it mean to absquatulate?

I don’t know, but I’m getting my ass out of here as soon as possible, before anyone discovers that my vocabulary is not as broad as I claim it is – and I’m takin’ the petty cash with me for travel expenses.
3.  What is a biggin?

She’s probably not talking about my well-endowed uncle, Ivor Biggin.  I’ll have to put on my thinking cap about this one.  It might even be a benefit to take a short nap.  I’ll probably sleep like a baby after I have a hot toddy.
4.  What is a daedalist?

I am soooo… glad that it has nothing to do with the Catholic Church pedophile scandal.  That’s about diddleists.  He’s a competitor in the Tour d’Estonia bicycle race.  It doesn’t get the interest and coverage that the Tour de France does.  Estonia being much smaller than France, the entire race is usually over in less than 47 minutes.
5.  What is gamophobia?

It is a fear of romantic involvement or marriage.  I thought I had it once, but my girlfriend assured me I didn’t, and that we were getting married.  And I wasn’t even pregnant!!?
6.  What is a holm?

Holm is the Swedish name for a string of hospices where aging actors and actresses live at the end of their careers and their lives.  For extra humidity, to help moisten their lungs, they are often built down on river flats.  Both Celeste Holm, and Sir Ian Holm have stayed at one.
7.  What is jettatura?

Obnoxious words and phrases evolve to hide their objectionable backgrounds.  In the US, nigger became Negro, and then Black, Colored, and finally, African-American.  So too, has Monied Society become the Idle Rich, Glitterati, and the Jet Set, and, at last, Jettatura, a Portuguese term that hides the fact that they’re still lighting $100 cigars with $100 bills, and carrying Gucci purses and Hérmes scarves worth an average family’s annual income.
8.  What is a keffel?

The things I learn at my Eurofood store!!  While they concentrate on European comestibles, they told me that a keffel is a type of Nigerian pancake, made with flour from ground-up crickets.  It is best, served with poinsettia-jelly.
9.  What is meant by labtebricole?

To B, or not to B??  Turns out that it’s not two Bs.  Someone was a tad generous with the consonants.  The word is preferably spelled LATEBRICOLE.  That’s something that I discovered when I emerged from my hermit cave – my Osama bin Laden spider-hole – to get good enough Wi-Fi reception to research it.
10. What is a lacuna?

Apparently, there’s a hole – a gap – in my language knowledge, as big as the one in Terry Thomas’ teeth.

Smitty’s loose Change #18

Live a good life.

If there are gods and they are just, then they will not care how devout you have been, but will welcome you based on the virtues you have lived by.

If there are gods, but unjust, then you should not want to worship them.

If there are no gods, then you will be gone, but will have lived a noble life that will live on in the memories of your loved ones.

***

MSN Headline
City in Ontario may be the most miserable in the US.

Can you tell me what’s wrong with that sentence?   😯

THE PIPES, THE PIPES ARE CALLING

They called one company ‘Sider Plumbing.’  Putting siding on homes or buildings occurred long after surnames were assigned.  This is not likely an English name.  Here in ex-Berlin, it seems that it might be German, but research tells me that it (used to be spelled Seider) is Yiddish/Jewish, meaning prayer book.

Less than a week later, they called another, ‘Teahen Plumbing.’  I know what a peahen is.  She is a female peafowl.  Only the males are properly called peacocks.  What is a ‘Teahen?’  It’s a surname that began as Teahan.  Irish (Kerry): reduced Anglicized form of Gaelic Ó Téacháin ‘descendant of Téachán’, a personal name probably derived from teitheachán ‘fugitive.’. Many regard plumbers as crooks.  It is not a name for one to brag about.

***

If you want to know why we are here or what your ultimate, divine purpose is, you should accept that the answer is either 1) unknowable or 2) nonexistent. Either way, demanding that your worldview include answers to these types of questions, completely unvetted by reason, is childish and irresponsible. The universe doesn’t owe you answers and is not obligated to make sense to the likes of you. These questions will never be answered (even if an answer actually exists). Stop pretending you’re important enough to deserve an answer, and that you’ve found the answer when you haven’t.

***

Like Father – Like Son

Once upon a time in the dark mists of the past, I published a vignette about how I inconvenienced a gold-crucifix-wearing young woman into removing a shopping cart she’d abandoned in a handicap parking space.  Channeling his Father, the son recently got a chance to duplicate the feat.

Coming home after a long night at work, he stopped at the local supermarket.  Even with a stiff/sore leg from a hard shift, and a Handicap Permit in the car, he didn’t park in any of the reserved spots, nearest the store, instead, pulling into the next one in a row.

As he came out, a man ahead of him pushed a cart with a green, plastic You-Pack bin, and a bag of groceries into the middle of a handicap spot.  Abandoning the cart there, he carried his haul to the next lane, and put them in the trunk.

The son was aghast!  “You ignorant, arrogant, selfish, thoughtless asshole!  He grabbed the cart, bumped it over a curb, placed it broadside in front of the guy’s car, and stood beside it, glaring.  The Asshole came bustling out of his car.
What the Hell are you doing?”
“I’m abandoning this cart here, just like you abandoned it in a handicap spot!”
“What do you expect me to do about it?”
“Put it away, where it belongs, either in the cart corral, or back in the store!”
“I’m busy.  I have places to go.”
“I’m not.  I just got off work.  I have all day.”

It turned out that Mr. Abandonment Issues wasn’t nearly as busy as he claimed.  The son detests confrontation.  He said, “I was shaking all the time – but it felt so good.”  Not bad for a second-generation Atheist!  😎  I am so proud of him!

***

Church: “Our church is on fire!  Please send help.”
911: “All our engines are busy helping tax-paying customers.  Have you tried praying?

***

When the wife’s OCD spills over into her cooking,  (Less and less these days.  I am making more and more one-pan meals) the exactly correct utensil must be used.  We can’t measure out one cup of milk in a graduated two-cup measuring cup.  We can’t whip up a small amount of sauce in an easily-accessible, large bowl.  And cutting boards…… 😯

I just donated three lightly-used cutting boards to Goodwill.  How many do we have left??!  Is it one?  Three?  Eleven?  Or Oh-My-God??!  That’s a trick question.  The real answer is somewhere between eleven, and Oh-My-God.

We have them in pine, fir, maple, ash, poplar and bamboo.  We have soft plastic, rigid nylon, glass, and Plexiglas.  We have them with holes, and hang-up handles, but nowhere to hang them.  We have them with rubber feet, so that they don’t slip on a counter.  We have them from a tiny, pâté or soft cheese server, barely larger than my palm, up to one that covers the double kitchen sink and lets us carve a 25 lb. Christmas turkey.

’22 A To Z Challenge – J

 

Jesus, Jeremiah, Jumped-Up, Jehoshaphat, Jehovah!!  Here it is, time to have a J post ready for the A To Z Challenge and, as usual, I don’t have a single black pixel on the virtual white page.

The wife thinks that I am a procrastinating Jackass.  The son says that I am a lazy Jerk.  The daughter is not as Judgmental.  She just sits on the sidelines and Jeers.

I took a short Journey, out to a shopping mall, now that they have re-opened after COVID.  It was Just a little Jaunt to the now-legal cannabis Joint, to buy a…. Joint. I met a Jolly old man with a bushy, white beard.  He assured me that he was Jovial, but not Jocular.  He was dressed in strange, all-red clothes, and was even more rotund than me.  He laughed a lot, and his midriff shook like a bowlful of Jelly.

He said that I deserved to get coal at Christmas, but EPA regulations restricted him to giving me a miniature wind turbine.  He assured me that I was so mouthy garrulous, that I could charge all my electronic gadgets with it, if I just kept talking at it.  I thought that was a bit Juvenile, but probably Justified.

After Jawing with him, I Judged that it was time to get me and my cowboy boots, which do not go Jingle-Jangle-Jingle, over to the men’s cooking class at the supermarket.  Today’s food category would be Jell-O salads.  The wife doesn’t like them.  The only time I get some is at a buffet restaurant.  As one of ten children in a Good Catholic family, she associates them with “Poor Folks” food.

Today’s was a Jewel of a lesson – a gourmet recipe for wiener Jell-O salad.  I Jotted down all the preparation instructions, every Jot and tittle of them.

Stop back on Wednesday.  After you’ve read my post, I’m throwing a picnic.  I hope you like frankfurters.  I’m just not grilling them.  Y’all come, now.   😉

Flash Fiction # 286

PHOTO PROMPT © Sandra Crook

ROCKIN’ UP

All society is a pendulum, from too strict, to too lax, and back again.  Our best hope is that the average is always upward.  The proof is here in Ed Sheeran’s Castle On The Hill-land.  Once, the rich, who stole from the weak and poor to get that way, built huge commanding castles on hilltops to keep others from stealing from them.

Nowadays, that service is provided by the IRS.  I am optimistic that American education will improve, and Trump-sponsored Christian willful ignorance and intolerance will begin to abate.  Castles are passé, but ‘Prepper Shelters’ are becoming all too common.

***

If you want to join the fun with the Friday Fictioneers, go to Rochelle’s Addicted to Purple site, and use her Wednesday photo as a prompt to write a complete 100 word story.

He Is Not A Pleasant Fellow

I am not a very pleasant fellow – as certified by my wife.

The son often reads Quora, an online discussion forum, which has the recurring theme, “Was I The Asshole?”  I did it again – or did I??!  You be the judge.

The wife and I entered a small variety store – think Wal-Mart-Lite.  As many stores do, the entrance aisle was narrow.  Ten feet in, the store had put clothing racks on either side, narrowing traffic even more.  Two corpulent women stood, examining clothing on one rack.  Their shopping cart was crossways to traffic flow, with its nose buried in the far rack.

We, and the couple behind us, could not proceed.  I reached ahead, and moved their cart parallel to the aisle.  We all started forward.  Just as we passed, I heard one woman complain, “He’s not a very pleasant fellow, is he?”  Despite the fact that the wife insists that I need hearing aids, I heard her mutter, “No, he’s not, is he?”

Now, some of my readers might be surprised, but being voted a pleasant fellow by a random idiot bunch of total strangers is not on my list of desired goals.  Then I started thinking about the encounter.  Just what would I have had to do to be considered pleasant??!  What did I do, to deserve such denigration?

I didn’t scream or yell.  I didn’t raise my voice.  I didn’t demand.  I didn’t curse and swear. I didn’t insult either of them.  I didn’t say a word.  I didn’t even require that one of them actually move the offending obstacle.

I could have put a smile in my big, stertorous, public-speaking voice, and sweetly asked, “Could someone please take their inattentive and exasperating head out of their Fucking ass and move this piece-of-shit cart, so that I can get into this God-damned store??!

But no!  This was more like a good day at work.  No-one actually died.  There wasn’t much blood, and the flames were quickly extinguished.  What does a fellow have to do to be declared polite and pleasant, and not get voted off the island?

Now it’s your turn to vote.  Was I the asshole??  Or just a pleasant, if not totally innocent, bystander?

I’ll tabulate the ballots on Friday.  No Fibbing.  😉

Straight Line To One-Liners

I went line dancing last night….
….Okay – roadside sobriety test – same thing.

Have you ever noticed ‘The” and “IRS”….
….spells “Theirs”?

Patience….
….What you have when there are too many witnesses.

If my body is ever found on a jogging trail….
….just know that I was killed somewhere else, and my body dumped there.

Forget world peace….
….Visualize using your turn signal.

Gone are the days when girls cooked like their mothers….
….Now they drink like their fathers

Damn right I’m good in bed….
….I can stay there all day.

Old age is when you still believe….
….you’re going to feel better in the morning.

Instead of a sign that says Do Not Disturb….
….I need one that says Already Disturbed!  Proceed with caution.

The wife and I had words….
….I just didn’t get to use mine.

Funny!!?….
….I don’t remember being absent-minded.

Kids in the back seat cause accidents….
….Accidents in the back seat cause kids.

It was a whole lot easier to get older….
….than it was to get wiser.

It’s not hard to meet expenses….
….They’re everywhere!

I wish the buck really did stop here…..
….I could use a few of them.

Energiser bunny arrested….
….Charged with battery.

Early this morning, there was a tap on my door….
….My plumber has a strange sense of humor.

I just ate 12 pieces of KFC chicken….
…..It’s always been on my bucket list.

A shopkeeper told me to have a nice day….
….I didn’t – so I sued him.

The dumbest thing I ever did….
….was to become an adult.

I sympathize with batteries….
….I’m never included in anything, either.

All dogs are therapy dogs….
….The majority are just freelancing.

My wife’s not too smart.  I said, “Our kids are spoiled.”….
….She replied, “They all smell like that.”

Good Morning….
….I see the assassins have failed.

I took a urine test at the hospital today….
….My kleptomania is out of control.

If your outgo exceeds your income….
….then your upkeep will be your downfall.

A guy said to me, “Nothing rhymes with orange.”….
….I replied, “No it doesn’t.”

Did you hear the rumor about butter?….
….Never mind, I shouldn’t spread it.

Flash Fiction #285

PHOTO PROMPT © Bill Reynolds

WOW

My creative git up and go has got up and went.  (What, again??!)  😳

Much as I would like to, I can’t always rely on Fibbing Fridays to end the week with.

My writing skills have flamed out.  Rochelle’s picture this week has left them as sere and ravaged as Yosemite after a wildfire, so this will have to be a WOW post.

The Word Of the Week is

Ischia

This is a Latin word for the name of an island in the Bay of Naples.  It is called that because it resembles the bones at the back of the pelvis.

***

If you’d like to join the fun with the Friday Fictioneers, go to Rochelle’s Addicted to Purple site and use her Wednesday photo as a prompt to write a complete 100 word story.

What If??  What If?? What If??

Oh goody!  We’re going to play a game of What If.  I have not been amused or entertained by one of those for years.

Let’s say you were in a naval battle in the middle of the ocean and your ship was destroyed so you are in very cold water. You know that you need to act now to get on a ship or you will die. Now there are 4 ships that you can swim to. But it looks like all the ships are very badly damaged and unlikely to be seaworthy enough to save you. It’s hard to tell from your position but as best you can tell one ship has a 5% chance but the others have less than a 2% chance of being seaworthy enough to save you. 

What do you do? Do you think well no one has “proven” or “verified” that any of these ships will save me so I might as well die in the water? Or do you start swimming to the ship that gives you a five percent chance (the best shot)? I think that is the obvious choice. You are not in a position to demand “proofs” or “verification.” You just have to make do with the information you have. 

I think this is analogous to the situation we are in when it comes to how we should live. We can’t pause our life until someone can prove how we are supposed to live. We choose to act or not act all the time. And we can’t insist on verification or proof beyond what we have. We just have to take our best shot. 

For me I think following Christ’s teachings is the “best shot.” I may wish I had better evidence or proofs but reality does not bend to my wishes. The rational person bends his beliefs and actions to reality.

People often believe that they are thinking, when all they’re really doing is rearranging their prejudices.  So, you’re going to dream up a scenario that is so outlandish and restrictive, that it makes your already-decided-on choice look good barely acceptable.

I am disturbed that you would advocate a selection with a 95% chance of failure, but, as you inferred, It’s (barely) better than nothing.  Desperation is not considered a good method of choice.  It usually results in wrong decisions.  Even choice is a bad method.  You can attend a Christian church, and repeat all the magic words, but it won’t produce the honest, true-hearted Belief that the unwritten rules call for.

I’d like to ask what mechanism you used to determine what percentage of success your choice, both in real life and in your specious analogy, had.  I see none, other than desperation and gullibility – only an unproven claim.

Unlike your fantasy-novel format, in real life it is both possible and advisable to do some research, so that you don’t end up in these religious shipwreck scenarios.

What if that water isn’t as cold and deep as you believe?  What if you were just told that, by the guy who runs the life-preserver franchise?  What if, no matter which ship you swam to, it sank and drowned you?  What if the ship you chose was an enemy vessel, and the agents of Allah tortured you to death?  What if you stopped panicking, and used your strength and determination to swim toward the big orange rubber raft that the rescue helicopter just dropped, labelled Reason/Reality?  What if you’re not Captain James T. Kirk, and there just is no right answer?

What if you summarily dismiss all of my What Ifs, because you think that they sound almost as silly as your What Ifs??!

’22 A To Z Challenge – I

 

 

 

 

 

 

It’s not that I’m stubborn.  It’s just that I’m usually right.  I am urged to consider others’ opinions.  I do!  I consider many of them stupid and unworkable.  My darling wife, whose vocabulary is limited to romance novel levels, would not call me

Intransigent

refusing to agree or compromise; uncompromising; inflexible
obstinately maintaining an attitude

Nor

Intractable

not easily controlled or directed; not docile or manageable; stubborn; obstinate:
difficult to influence or direct

I don’t think that I am smarter than others.  It is, perhaps, just that I pay more attention to reality.  I only have a high school diploma, and some work-related post-secondary training.  I am constantly amazed by the ignorance and misunderstanding of people with college and university degrees.

One day, at work, four of us were playing cards at lunch, and the radio played an advertisement referencing the legal code of Habburami.   Two of us perked up, and simultaneously shouted, “Hammurabi!”  A co-worker asked, “How do you know?”  I answered, ”Because we paid attention in class.”

Religion is not the only reason that people believe and say foolish, stupid things.  The education system in North America, more and more, resembles a sewage treatment plant, with about the same type and quality of output.  Something is rotten in the state of Denmark Mississippi, New Jersey, etc.

I am amenable to being honestly and intelligently guided, but I refuse to be blindly led.  I am willing – anxious – to change my opinion if I am offered solid evidence, and well-thought-out presentations.  I will not take seriously, any opinion, from someone who asks things like, “Do Atheists have children?” – or Flat-Earth-type fools who claim that, “Australia is a lie.  It’s not real.  If it was, (sic) people would fall off.”

Twice As Lucky Fibbing Friday

Pensitivity101 has thrown up her hands in resignation and wonderment at how I continue to sneak past her guard-Corgis, and purloin yet another list of prompts for creative mendacity.
(Trade secret: I quietly read to them from The Curious Case of the Dog in the Night-Time, as a bed-time story, and they doze right off.)

  1. What is meant by jumping bail?

He is Christian Bale’s irreligious cousin, Atheist Bail.  (The Immigration Department spelled their name differently, when they immigrated here separately, from Inner Slobovia.)  He is the Track and Field Wunderkind at his high school, with his long, powerful legs.  He competes in long jump, high jump, hop-step-and-jump, and finishes his afternoon workout with a few laps of hurdles.

  1. What is a skipping rope?

The United States still has several states with the death penalty.  If you kill somebody, we’ll kill you back.  In Texas, if you kill a police officer, they have installed an express lane.  The State of Utah, full of loving, religious Mormons, offers the condemned prisoner a choice – hanging, or firing squad.  If you choose the firing squad, that’s skipping rope.

  1. What is a sickly hue?

One of my cats has allergies, and is not above hacking up a bile-encrusted hairball in the middle of the night.  When I stepped on one, getting out of bed one morning, I said to the wife, “I must remember to put on my slippers.” until the morning I found one – by squeamish touch – in a slipper.  A sickly hue was the look on my face that day.

  1. What is cooking the books?

In an effort to be relevant as a wife and mother, providing food for her family, the wife purchased cookbook after cookbook – The Betty Crocker Cookbook, The Joy Of Cooking, The Canadian Cookbook, Food That Really Schmecks, The International Cookbook.

Over the years, we have enjoyed a spicy beef stew from Kenya, Scottish shepherds’ pie, French onion soup and tourtiere, perogies from the Ukraine, hot and sour soup, and beef and broccoli stir-fry, vindaloo beef, and tandoori chicken from India, Greek tarragon chicken and rice, Mexican beef fiesta, and Louisiana shrimp Creole.

As she aged, she grew weaker – more apathetic.  More and more, the preparation of meals fell to me.  I couldn’t produce the fancier dishes.  There was one more book that I found invaluable, 365 Ground Meat Recipes – meatloaf, pork burgers with sautéed onions, hamburger goulash, hamburger stroganoff, curried hamburger, spaghetti Bolognaise, chili con carne, sloppy Joes, chili fries, ground chicken or turkey egg Fu yung, and ground lamb gyros/doners.  Bon appetite.  😀

  1. What is a microwave?

It was the minuscule, almost subliminal, acknowledgement of my existence, from him, when I ran into my Baptist minister at the liquor store.

  1. What is meant by passing the buck?

This is a habit that Canadians have developed since our government stopped printing one-dollar and two-dollar bills, and replaced them with large, clunky coins.  Small change isn’t all that small anymore.  If you’re not careful, it’s easy to acquire a pocket or purse so full, that a limp can be induced.

While Canadians in general have embraced debit and credit cards, many of us make sure to lighten our load by paying for small purchases with these albatrosses Loonies.  And some genius has been minting and passing counterfeit Toonies, with seals instead of polar bears, and some zombie guy instead of Lizzie the Twooth.  https://ottawa.citynews.ca/police-beat/police-investigating-counterfeit-toonies-found-at-hawkesbury-store-4949995

  1. What are air kisses?

Hopefully, they’re the only kind you get, while COVID and Omicron are putting tag-team arm- ass-locks on us.  The Glitterati out in Hollywood have been practicing for this for years.  They’re a lot like online sex.  You can have a thunderous orgasm – even if no one else is in the room.

  1. What is meant by shooting one’s mouth off?

A female Arizona newspaper columnist was assigned to interview the oldest man in the county – 106 years.  She asked him what he attributed his long life to.  He told her that he mixed a little gunpowder with his cereal each morning, and suggested that she try it.  She did so for years, finally dying at 96.  She left behind four children, eight grandchildren, twelve great-grandchildren, and a 24 foot crater where the crematorium used to be.

  1. What does a dentist do?

He’s a guy like my neighbor Bob, operating a vehicle in a crowded parking lot.  The local Association of Auto-Body Shops have voted him their favorite driver, three years in a row.

  1. What is a ruff?

That’s Dennis the Menace’s dog!  Am I the only one old enough to remember?   😕