But can she bake a cherry pie?

There’s a pretty good gag in this cartoon involving the raspberry jam making a “raspberry.” I started wondering why the derisive noise also known as a “Bronx cheer” came to be known as a raspberry, and I learned that it comes from Cockney rhyming slang. “Raspberry tart” = “fart.” Well, there you have it. Enjoy those tarts, everybody.

A cup of kindness yet

2017, I’m trying not to burden you with a lot of expectations. Google autofill gave me “worse” when I typed in “2017 will be…”, and even when I typed in “2017 will be better,” the first result was an op-ed entitled “2017 Will Probably Be Terrible,” accompanied by a Wal-Mart ad.

I don’t know what to do here. 2017, am I cursing you to mediocrity by not pushing you to be the best you can be? Or am I putting too much pressure on you if I do that, dooming you to failure? Oh, 2017. What will you be?

 

Published in: on December 31, 2016 at 10:13 am  Leave a Comment  
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Wanna buy a duck?

It’s snowing on the blog again, which means it’s time for Christmas cartoons. Hooray! I think I get a lot of the old references here, though I’m not sure why Bing Crosby is a wind-up goat. I don’t understand the jack-in-the-box/bead toy “Why are you wearin’ the whiskers?” exchange, either. Anybody know what that’s about?

Hi, holidays!

I know I woke up at 7:45 of my own volition this Saturday morning, but I’ve never identified with Scrappy as much as in this cartoon. I’m ready for the holidays. I mean, not ready at all but ready as a child might be ready. But Thanksgiving is not until Thursday so I might need to go back to bed for a little bit as soon as I post this.

A ticket, a tocket

I got some brand new rockets for this year’s Rocket Day. One is tall and thin and shaped like a pencil. Benny laughed at me for getting it but it’s supposed to go really high. The other one is short and squat and isn’t supposed to go really high, but it kind of looks like SBI-5.

I’ll let you know if I encounter any Atlanteans or dinosaurs or fancy space millionaires while flying it. Wish me luck.

Hot punch

I know it’s too early to start planning a Halloween party but my friend Chuckles and I were looking through the File o Fun this weekend and I started getting excited. The File o Fun is a card file of activities that Chuckles found at her work, and it has all sort of suggestions for making parties and dances less boring. There are games like Potato Knockout and Lemon Dance, skits to perform, suggestions for a really good blindfold, and instructions about when you should and should not award prizes at your party. The File o Fun seems like something Amy Sedaris would own and use often, much to the chagrin of her friends. Our version is from 1970 but it looks like there is a newer edition available on Amazon.

Something I didn’t notice before this weekend in the File of Fun was the section devoted to “detailed party plans.” These plans fold out into full-sized pieces of paper, and while most of them look good enough to print onto a t-shirt, there is one that stands out – the Halloween Family Night.

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Yes, that may be clown makeup there on the bottom. We’re not talking about that – let’s look at the actual activities.

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Peanut Lag! Apple Biting! Jail! And then there’s the Danger Corner:

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This party sounds awesome. As soon as I determine what the Peanut Lag is, I’m going to try to put this shindig together. Google isn’t helping me and the File o Fun doesn’t have a master table of contents, so it may take me until October to figure this out.

Etiquette & superstition: single at Christmas

christmascracker

Last year I wrote an etiquette & superstition post noting that if you were going to be a crank during Christmas, you should probably just stay home by yourself and not ruin everyone else’s fun. Sometimes you’re by yourself over the holidays through no cranky fault of your own, however. Treat yourself to some nice takeout or something and try to take it easy. It’s going to be okay.

ETIQUETTE: Miss Manners notes that questions from acquaintances such as, “What did you do for the holidays?” and “Did you have a nice Christmas?” are to be taken about as seriously as “How are you?” That is, not seriously at all. These are meaningless pleasantries. You don’t go into a litany of your financial, spiritual and physical woes with the grocery store clerk when you get a “How are you?” from them when they’re ringing you up, do you? (Please say no.)

So if you spent Christmas alone staring dead-eyed at the wall, this is not the time to share that information. You got through the day; why do you want to relive it, and above all, spread your horror to another person who was just trying to give you the verbal equivalent of a friendly wave? Get out of your brain for a moment. If you truly had the loneliest day of your life and need to unload, please take a friend aside at some time when you can really have a deep, two-sided conversation about what you experienced. If you don’t have a friend to talk to, feel free to write to me in a private message and I will listen. My email address is in the “About” section of this blog.

SUPERSTITION: If a single girl bangs on the door of the chicken coop really loudly on Christmas Eve and a rooster yells at her before a hen yells at her, she will be married before the end of the year. If she goes into the garden at midnight and plucks twelve leaves from the sage bush, she will be met by an apparition of her future husband.

If you really live in solitude and your only companions are ghosts, you will be alone on Christmas Eve because that is one night that ghosts never appear (sorry, Charles Dickens). If you were born on Christmas day, you will never see a ghost in your lifetime.

Photo by Matthew Matheson via Flickr

In spite of myself

Please bear with this cartoon if you are like me and have a special dread of the seasonal chestnut “A Visit from St. Nicholas.”  If I were to do an impressionistic re-write of “A Visit from St. Nicholas,” it would be along the lines of:

Sugarplums
Clatter
Simile
Simile
Simile
List of names
Simile
Simile simile simile simile
Simile simile
Wink jerk
Simile
Good night

This cartoon omits seven of my least favorite similes from the poem in favor of a nice little toy rescue sub-plot. Merry Christmas; don’t forget.

Russian around the Christmas tree

Getting a Christmas tree in Russia seems really difficult if this is what Father Christmas has to do to get one.

Words of the day for Tuesday, November 24th

Thanksgiving dinner tends to have its share of things that you absolutely positively are going to be served whether you like them or not. Rather than falsely declare an allergy to a particular food item (please don’t do that), perhaps you could claim a phobia*. Examples:

MeleagrisphobiaMeleagrisphobia is the fear or turkeys. I believe it’s more a phobia of the live guys running around than of a giblet on your plate, but there is little chance that anybody at your table is going to know this.

No problem with the main course? Perhaps you have

Potnonomicaphobiapotnonomicaphobia, which is a fear of potato products, particularly mashed potatoes. Please note that this is incredibly rare. Most people with a potato-related phobia tend to fear the eyes on old potatoes if a simple Google search is to be believed. Now that I’m thinking about that one, I might have it. I don’t think I can bear to even search to find a term for it. That’s… oh, why did I even find that? Ugh. Moving along.

Are you embracing your inner vampire and trying to avoid garlic? Declare yourself

Alliumphobic(1)alliumphobic and be done with it. Or perhaps you’re fine until the dessert course and for whatever reason you cannot bear to eat a slice of pumpkin pie.

Cucurbitophobia
Cucurbitophobia will get you out of your predicament far more quickly than a claim of gluten intolerance or sugar aversion ever will.

Perhaps the thing you know that is going to be served that you absolutely cannot swallow is Uncle Kirby’s avowal of love for all things Donald Trump. Just stay home, declare a sudden bout of

Allodoxaphobia
Allodoxaphobia (the fear of opinions), and order yourself a nice pizza or something.

*Actually, don’t do this either. All you faux-coulrophobics out there can suck it.

 

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