BEDA Warning

For years I have been lithely and nimbly avoiding the April A To Z Challenge trap, by spreading my weight out over the entire year.  This year I have been ensnared in the BEDABlog Every Day in April Challenge.  I have decided to – not abandon my Monday, Wednesday, Friday posting schedule – but add to it.

To my 13 regularly-scheduled April posts, I will add another 17, to sate the month, and my readers.  Many of the extra posts will be like little mental flickers from a 4th of July sparkler – like my 100-word Flash Fictions – a quick, bright idea, there and then gone.  Others may be a little wordier.  Oh good.  Thanx for the warning.

I had 45 unpublished posts in the can, in a Word file, when I found out about this, and I’ve already composed a couple of short new ones.  If any of my readers have an idea, a topic, a prompt, something they wish discussed, researched or satirized, feel free to submit your subject in the comments.

Why couldn’t I do this in February, when there’s only 28 days??!  😳

Onward and upward!  Excelsior!

Through A Theist Glass, Darkly

How fear of Atheism gets some Christian Apologists all turned around, mirror-image.

If Atheism are true, and there is no God

  1. Humans were moist robots
  2. Humans had no mind
  3. Humans had no emotion
  4. Humans had no free will
  5. If universe is at it is, and yet we know that universe will end one day, then the universe will be in doom
  6. There is no good and no evil if atheism is true

If there is no final Judgement, it’s like somebody murdered someone else, deep in the forest and nobody saw it happen, then they wouldn’t get arrested or charged or put in prison.

# !  That’s a very emotion-driven, sensationalistic claim but, SO WHAT.  We are what we appear to be – sentient beings, constantly striving, constantly learning, constantly improving, always trending upward, for the betterment of ourselves as individuals, and as a race – and all of it without an absentee-landlord puppet-master, so, we are hardly robots.

# 2  Oh, these poor Christian Apologists – they are nothing without their God-crutch.  I don’t know how to rebut this assertion, except to say that it is silly and untrue.  I did not ask the writer to explain and justify his claim.  Previous similar attempts have just produced bewildered responses like, Of course it’s true!  That’s obvious! when it is definitely not obvious.

#3  First we had no thought.  Now we have no feelings, without God the orchestra leader.  Such a bleak, morbid, and dismal outlook!  😯  While the belief in the existence of God can’t be proven, for writers like this, perhaps it is better that he continue to do so.  He seems to need some solid emotional and psychological support to keep from slipping into the abyss of clinical depression.

#4  Another unsupported, mirror-image claim.  😕  If God exists, as writers like this claim, and He ‘knows all,’ past, present and future, then His perfect and unchanging plan means that everything we do is predestined, and there is no such thing as free will.  Only the nonexistence of God in any way makes us free – but that’s only another thing that worries such writers.  We should only be free (?) to agree to worship their God.

I don’t know how he equates free will, with a deity which has a Top Ten and 603 following commandments about what you can eat, drink, wear, and who you can do it with.

#5  English is not his first language.  Perhaps this cavil makes more sense in Korean.  He’s right.  Whether God exists or not, the Universe will, one day, die the heat-death of entropy – a very natural occurrence.  It’s just that we won’t be around to experience it, so he’ll have to explain to his mental-health counsellor, why he attaches the word ‘doom’ to it.

#6  “Good” and “Evil” do not exist as tangible entities.  “Evil” tends to be a term used by religious/Christians, indicating intent.  Atheists usually substitute ‘good and bad,’ natural descriptors which can exist without a God.  Good is that which increases my well-being and/or happiness.  ‘The greatest good, for the greatest number.’  Bad is that which decreases my well-being – and those around me, and the entire human race.

Being convinced to drink disinfectant to, ‘cure COVID’ might even make me happy, but it does not increase the well-being of my widow, or my children, who are now without a father and provider.

***

While he does not use the word in his final complaint, he implies the Hell out of the concept of ‘Fair.’  Fair is where you take your pig, to have it judged.  The Universe is supremely disinterested in the human concept of justice.  Things like his example occur all the time.  Again, SO WHAT??!  !sneppah tihS

Even the existence of his hypothetical God does not guarantee justice, or ‘fair.’   Someone like failed-Catholic, Adolf Hitler, might repent at the end, confess his sins, plead for forgiveness, and go to Heaven, while Anne Frank is sent to Hell.  👿

Kindergarten Comedy

My Kindergarten students are learning to read.  Recently one of them pointed to a picture in a book and said, “Look, a frickin’ elephant.”
Taking a deep breath, I asked why he had called it that.
“Cuz it says so in the book.”
And so it does – African elephant.

***

My wife and I went into town and visited a shop. When we came out, there was a cop writing out a parking ticket. We went up to him and I said, “Come on man, how about giving a senior citizen a break?”

He just ignored us and continued writing the ticket.

I called him an “a**hole.” He glared at me and started writing another ticket for having worn-out tires.

So my wife called him a “s*ithead.”

He finished the second ticket and put it on the windshield with the first.

Then he started writing more tickets. This went on for about 20 minutes. The more we abused him, the more tickets he wrote. He finally finished, sneered at us and walked away.

Just then our bus arrived, and we got on it and went home.

***

A young boy comes running down the street looking for a cop.

He finds one and then begs “Please, officer, come back to the bar with me, my father’s in a fight.”

Well, they get back to the bar and there’s three guys fighting like you wouldn’t believe.

After a while the cop turns to the kid and says “Okay, which one’s your father?”

The kid looks up at the cop and says, “I don’t know, officer, that’s what they’re fighting about.”

***

A Polish man walks into a store and asks to buy 2 pounds of Polish sausage. The guy behind the counter asks him if he is Polish. “I resent that…”. The Polish man says. “If I asked for chorizo, would you assume I was Mexican? If I asked for Bratwurst, would you assume I was German?” The guy behind the counter says “Nope, I’d still think you were Polish… This is a hardware store!!”

***

A new father and a nurse were filling out the paperwork for the birth of his new daughter.  “What’s the baby’s name?” she asked.
He replied, “Kelsey Noelle.”
Confused, the nurse asks, “How do you spell Kelsey, with no L??”

***

When I was young, I was poor.  Now, after long years of hard, honest work…. I am no longer young.

***

As I looked at my naked body in the mirror, I thought to myself, “I’m going to get tossed out of IKEA any minute now.

Flash Fiction #278

PHOTO PROMPT © Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

WRITTEN IN STONE

We’re getting a new city hall??!  This is the third in fifty years!  Another monument to bureaucracy??!  😯

Drug addicts and paraphernalia litter the streets.  Guys sleep in alleys and on vents.  The police force, social services, soup kitchens, homeless shelters, abused women’s homes and food-banks are underfunded and overwhelmed.  Still, council budgeted $24 million, most of it siphoned from the capital contingency account.

This will be a glorious legacy project to exalt outgoing, long-time mayor Priapus Swaggart.  He must really know where the bodies are buried.  The drunks will appreciate a new, warm lobby to sleep it off in.

***

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

To Put It Another Way – II

Where, oh where did it all go wrong??  😕  I don’t know about all, but here are a few examples of Many a slip, twixt the ear and the lip.   😯

Pros
It seamingly permeates all of society – You seemingly don’t know one word from the other.

Leaving them so depended on others – That is dependent on knowing the correct word

The powerful engine enabled verticle takeoff – That’s just straight-up wrong.

They’d sell corpses to medical schools for extra mullah. – If they’d had a little extra moolah, they could have hired someone to teach them that a mullah is a Muslim teacher/priest.

A wisened runner – who should have wisened up to the fact the correct word, is wizened.

To shoe away pests at a campfire – now mosquitoes get free footwear as we shoo them away.

To unravel them aboard his dingy – He’s a bit dingy, if he doesn’t know it’s a dinghy

A car ran into a power pole guide-wire – Let me guide you to the phrase guy-wire.

Under the guides of friendship – Under the guise of correct usage, try again.

Computer litearate clerk needed – More than they realize.

He wrote the forward for the book – Looking back, he wrote the foreword.

The way ahead is wrought with danger – and it is fraught with pretentious misusage.

It would be wise to stick upon them – But I’d stock up on them

Black cats got a bad wrapwrap up that mistake and listen to some bad rap.

The idea sprung from the fact – I quickly sprang to correct that.

Technology could breach the gap – Shouldn’t it bridge the gap…. which is already a breach?

The plane was in the throws of destruction – I throws out the suggestion to use throes.

Amateurs

What word on this list reasonates with you? – The word resonates would, if it were there.

A copying mechanism to deal with problems – I’m not coping well with that spelling.

I conquer with Brian – You might conquer, if you were to concur.

It wreaks of scamming – Actually, it reeks of misusage.

I was working, went a high-pitched squeal…. – But when did it happen?

Should evoke a sign of relief from thinking people – I’m thinking that it should be a sigh of relief.

A starring wheel replacement – I’m steering you away from that.

A brain chokeful of grey cells – I choked, yelling that it was chock-full.

I hardly took a breath during my trade – which did not include the word tirade.

Hubby left a stinky thrown in the bathroom – I was thrown, until I realized she meant throne.

Therefor, he was wrong – but, Therefore is right

As I cantor up 9th Ave. – a Jewish singer tells me that it is canter.

It’s something we continue to carey with us – Drew says that it’s spelled carry.

The director when to the censor – I went to the Spellchecker.

Bible says not to ware mixed fabrics – so beware what you wear.

New Arkansas law to target instain mother who kill thier babbys.
Everything you’ve ever needed to know about rednecks.

A rouge motorhome ventured onto the track – That’s a huge mistake – both ways.

It chucks it up to illusion – I chalk it up to misusage.

She was ready to throw in the tile – Even before I wiped it with a towel.

He told a bold-faced lie – People with print programs haven’t heard of bald-faced lies

’21 A To Z Challenge – Y

As I reach my second childhood, I also reach back more and more to the comforts of my first.  Helping me put back more than a little familiar frivolity, is

YOUTUBE

There was a ‘Zits’ cartoon strip, where a 16-year-old male was asked what he did during summer vacation.  His answer was that he “Watched Netflix” – the whole, entire, complete, 100%, F**king, thing!

I can’t claim to have watched that much, but I’ve watched just about all of it that I want to.  Like social interaction, politics, and religion, I don’t care for the flavor of much of what passes for modern entertainment.  Netflix keeps commissioning tons of movies, but most seem to be made in foreign countries, and sub-titled or dubbed into English with varying degrees of (lack of) success.

I recently discovered that YouTube has a ton of old movies that the copyrights have expired on.  I’m often looking for some light comedy, to get my mind off things like, Trump In ’24, pandemic mandates, gas prices, and spiralling real estate costs.

First I found that they have almost every British ‘Carry On’ farce.  I’ll watch Three Stooges, but only the ones with Shemp Howard.  I’ve viewed some clips of Laurel and Hardy, trying to decide which complete movies I’ll watch.

I remembered The Bowery Boys.  Those films always used to provide some no-brain-needed amusement.  Research showed that they began as The Dead-End Kids, changed to The East-Side Kids, and finally morphed into The Bowery Boys.  YouTube has almost 50 of them on tap.  Most of them star Leo Gorcey, until he drank himself out of a job.  I’m going to look to see if any of the old black-and-white Flash Gordon, or Buck Rogers serials are available.

In between, I can dip into Charlie Chan flicks, and may begin re-watching Basil Rathbone’s Sherlock Holmes series.  My complaint about these movies is about the commercials.  I don’t object to commercials.  They’re a cost of doing business.  I used to have to endure commercials when I watched movies on network TV.

My complaint, and the difference between network and YouTube is; on network TV, commercials were inserted by a real, live human, who placed them in natural breaks in the action, or conversation.  YouTube commercials are inserted by a heartless, brainless computer, whenever the Hell its electronic brain feels like, in the middle of a scene, or a line of dialog.  “So tell us Charlie(INSERT ADVERTISMENT FOR ZEHR’S FOOD MARKETS HERE!)Chan, who is the murderer?  I am developing a lightning-fast, gamer’s thumb, clicking on that little button which reads Skip Ads!

Does anyone besides me have any guilty YouTube pleasures they wish to admit to, or any other suggestions for my viewing enjoyment?

X Marks The Fibbing Friday

No need to blame Pensitivity101 for all the sins of the anonymous blogger.  This week, I’m going with collective nouns.  These came in via my pension newsletter this month.

Can you ‘invent’ what creature or something else would apply in the following…

  1. A walk of …………Ads about running shoes/trainers/court shoes/high-tops, on TV and YouTube videos. Avia, Converse, Nike, Adidas and Reebok, heel to toe, all stepping on each other’s feet, trying to get a bigger market share, and keeping third-world sweatshop children busy.

    2. A bed of …………. Organic, Hipster, vegan-restaurant, salads – made with healthy, wholesome things like chia sprouts, kale, radicchio, and other items which are impossible to identify, pronounce, spell or swallow, that fell off a pig-farm feed truck.

    3. A horde of …………. Inane, unusable attempts to conjure up an intelligent, interesting, and amusing – Lie Your Face Off Theme.  I had to settle, as I have done too often in the past, for a large, cold, disappointing serving of If You Can’t Fix It – Feature It!  😳

    4. A bike of …………..two-wheeled urban couriers, flitting and fluttering like butterflies, darting in and out of traffic like barn swallows.  Sadly, an incautiously-opened car door, or an arrogant, impatient cab-driver, too often can suddenly change all this exercise and speed, fresh air and exhilaration from two-wheeled freedom and fulfilment, into four-wheeled disability.


    5. A rhumba of ………..Dance steps.  Congratulations!  You’ve won five free lessons at Bo-Jangles Dance Studio (Even though you didn’t enter any contest, and the telemarketer only called because your number was the next in sequence.)  To claim your prize, bring along your credit card, and your reluctant husband, in case you wish to sign up for the advanced course.


    6. A shrewdness of …………. A failed group of “Make Trump President Again’ supporters.  They got as far as ordering the hats – although MTPA doesn’t have the same impact as MAGAbefore they were hit with a restraining order from a dictionary, barring them from using the term.  It was, be an “Ironic,” or nothing.

    7. A raft of ……………..Mark Twain stories about Huck Finn, and Jim the runaway slave.

    8. A mess of …………….complaints about army food – mostly from guys who had to peel a hundred pounds of potatoes on KP duty.  Drop your socks and grab a spud, bud.

    9. A huddle of ……………ESPN football announcers and game analysts.  They’re busy watching the backfield in motion of the visiting team’s cheerleaders, when they’re not on-camera.

    10. A family of……………….Plastic Surgeons R Us LLC, causing silicone supply chain problems while exclusively serving the Kardshians.  They took the ‘Kan’ out of Kanye West, and added it to Kim’s ample bosom. “Ye”-God!  😳

I’ll dress it up with tinsel, or glitter, or Easter eggs, but, the truth is, there’ll be more of the usual on Monday.  Stop by anyway.  Watching me circling the drain might be entertaining.  😯

Poles Apart

I may disagree with what you have to say, but I shall defend, to the death, your right to say it.
Voltaire

America is lost, because of all the things that America already has lost – empathy, acceptance, sympathy, good manners, ego control, anger management, social justice, patience, understanding, and public civility and discourse.

It has become a nation of whining, exclusionist, pushy, cancel-culture, entitled, thugs.  The attitude is everywhere – in politics, religion and day-to-day social interaction.  The give-and-take is all gone, replaced by take! take! take!  They advocate #MeToo, but it’s all Me, Me, Me!

The hardest job kids face today is learning good manners without seeing any.

No-one takes the time to consider others as individuals, especially ones with valid opinions of their own.  Everyone else is just reduced to labels.  It is far easier to shout names at people, than it is to critically think.  Tribalism runs rampant.

Woke: a selfish ridiculous attitude towards anything, by people who feel undervalued and have the need to express themselves obnoxiously without regard for others.

Their guiding principal is “never let a crisis go to waste.”  Only in times of a pandemic, a national quarantine, or volatile race relations, can the new, upscale, leftist revolutionaries use fear to push through policies that no-one could stomach in normal times.

They hate dissent.  They try to destroy anyone who questions their media-spun hoaxes.  Truth is their enemy, and fear is their weapon.  George Orwell warned about 1984.  It’s a little late, but 1984 is upon us.

A hundred years ago, politicians referred to members of other parties as, The Honorable Member, or, The Respected Mister ….  They were Opponents – equals; they just didn’t want to do things ‘our way.’   Soon though, Honor and Respect disappeared.  Those who had been Opponents, became Adversaries.  In the 1960s and ‘70s, Adversaries became Enemies.  There’s no Go along, to get along.  Death threats are now the accepted form of political statement.

Over at the Temple of Peace, Love, and Acceptance, things aren’t any better.  A Christian College has been denied accreditation as a school by the Department of Education, rendering any diplomas invalid.  Their publicly posted mission statement clearly states who they will discriminate against.  An Op-Ed letter quoted the president, saying that he loved everybody, but would not accept that Catholics, Muslims and LGBTQ+ views were truthful, and then ironically demanded equality and fairness.  I was going to fire off a superheated rebuttal, but didn’t, when I realized that I could boil my reply down to two words.  YOU FIRST!!

There’s another Civil War brewing in America.  This time, it won’t be the North against the South – exactly.  It may become a schism between the Red States, and the Blue States, or the Bible Belt against the Quietly Spiritual.  I would hate to see that happen, because the only thing that keeps public culture safely in the middle of the social bell curve, is the fact that each side balances the other out.  If there’s a split, no matter which side you opt for, with the best of intentions, the brakes are off.  It’s a long slide down that slippery slope.

We’ve lost the ability to disagree with one another, without trying to cancel each other out. Woke is the new religion.  Statues come down, and schools must be renamed.  It is the ultimate conceit to apply today’s truths retroactively.   Quite soon, a Theocracy or Oligarchy will form, which will make Nazi Germany or Communist Russia look like a day-spa.  It won’t be pretty, kids.  Be careful what you wish for.  Pandora’s box isn’t quite empty.   😯

Pi-Liners

In honor of Pi Day, here are three and one/seventh jokes about it.

An opinion without 3.14….
….Is just an onion

I know all the digits of Pi….
….Just not in order.

What do you get if you eat 3.14 cakes?….
….FAT!  You get fat.

My wife is irrational, and her problems are never-ending….
….She was born on Pi day.

Why should you not start talking to Pi at a party?….
….Because it just goes on forever.

What do you get when you divide a jack-o-lantern by its circumference?….
….Pumpkin Pi.

What do you get when a bunch of sheep stand around in a circle?….
….Shepherd’s Pi.

Why did Pi fail its driving test?….
….It didn’t know when to stop.

The moon is not made of green cheese….
….It’s Pi in the sky

What’s the best way to visualize infinity?….
….With a Pi chart.

What TV show can help you grasp infinite numbers?….
….Magnum P.I.

What’s the ideal way to serve Pi?….
….Ala mode.  Anything less is mean.

Don’t let advanced mathematics intimidate you….
….It’s as easy as Pi.

I’m very much like Pi….
….I could go on with this silly math humor forever.

The local pie shop almost never closes….
….It’s open 22/7.

I don’t know why people get so excited about Pi Day….
….It’s completely irrational.

Why is Pi lucky in romance?….
….Because its love is infinite, and non-repeating.

My math teacher watched Life Of Pi for the first time….
….She gave it 3.14 stars.

Why isn’t Pi on Twitter?….
….Because even 280 characters isn’t enough to express itself.

I can recite Pi….
….Apple, pecan, cherry, peach, blueberry.

The worst thing about getting hit in the face with Pi….
….Is that it never ends.

In honor of Pi day….
….I’m going to be irrational all day.

A survey says that Pi Day is the third-most under-rated holiday….
….I’m sure it’s a little more than that.

As I sit here eating my Pi Day pie, I’m also looking forward to Tau Day….
….Then my desserts will have come full circle.

They say that today is Pi day….
….But to me, it will always be cake day.

Want to see all the decimal digits of Pi?….
….They are (0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, and 9).  There are no others.

What language should we speak on Pi Day?….
….Sine language.

What’s the difference between two 10” pizzas, and one 14” pizza?….
….One Pi.

A Pi compliment….
….My, you look radian today.

I tried to argue with the Priests of Pi….
….But they rely on circular logic.

3.14% of all sailors….
….Are Pi rates.

***

Flash Fiction #277

PHOTO PROMPT © Lisa Fox

FORTRESS MENTALITY

With the advent of COVID, Bruce’s neuroses finally became useful.  Social distancing?  Check!  He was a loner, something of a sociopath.  No physical contact?  Check!  He didn’t like to be touched.  Disinfecting?  Mr. Germaphobe carried his own hand sanitizer and wipes.

Work from home?  He was a ‘Prepper’ who’d bought this bunker of an old stone barn and was fixing it up.  He’d laid in a ton of government-surplus dried foods.  The windmill pumped water through filters, and supported a satellite dish for phone and internet.  The roof was solid solar cells.

“Call me when it’s safe to come out.”

***

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