Short Stack #16

[ Could be some repeats in here. Hey, I’m old.]

 

I think it would be funny to witness a nuclear explosion and then shout “That’s what SHE said!” Because hey, if ever people needed a laugh, it would be after witnessing a nuclear explosion.

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According to Google, I may be the first person on Earth to use the phrase “scuba diving laser cats.”

Someday I will have my own Wikipedia page for just this linguistic triumph. I wouldn’t be surprised if a Saturday morning animated children’s show came out of it. I can hear the theme song now: “They came from space, to save the human race, from deadly space rats, they’re the SCUBA DIVING LASER CATS!!”

Real space aliens will come down to earth and exclaim “We were all set to leave you to this pustulent rot you call civilization, until we saw you had Scuba Diving Laser Cats. Remarkable that two such different civilizations, ours and yours, would independently create such artistic richness. The original concept alone is pure genius. Would you like to join galactic civilization? We’ll sponsor you.”

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Circumcision – because a newborn peeing on an open wound for days or weeks is painless for parents, doctors and rabbis.

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Carpe per diem!  This is where you seize the day, but only as a part-timer. The rest of the week, you hang out on Facebook, play some Angry Birds, or kick back with friends.

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Some days I think “Damn. I should have taken the blue pill instead.”

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This amazed me when I read it earlier today: Literally, if there was no Adam and Eve, there was no Original Sin, and no need for the “sacrifice” of Jesus Christ. Even I know many Christians who think the Garden of Eden is only a nice story, and not the least bit true. The foundation of Christianity, that we are all born into sin and that Jesus died to redeem us, is an empty sham.

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Someone who will eat grapes in the store when they think nobody is looking … will also pee in your pool.

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For those of you who live in or near the Big Apple, I’ve just been informed that Bronx and Yonkers will be merging to form a new satellite municipality of New York City. The new town will be called Bonkers. Also: I’m absolutely certain I’m the first person ever to think of that joke. Ever.

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I want an atheist coffeehouse in my town. As to what it should be called, I’m torn between The Darwin Cafe and Russell’s Tea Spot.

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If you were gay, but also a snail, and you told your friends you were Coming Out, they’d go “Wait, what? Which way?”

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Every time I see a news story about someone being attacked by a bear, I think of this: On Sept. 13, 1899, Henry Bliss was struck and killed by an electric car at the corner of Central Park West and 74th Street, thus becoming the first pedestrian in New York City and North America killed by an automobile. Since then? A lot. Every year in the U.S., about 6,000 pedestrians are killed by automobiles, according to the NHTSA, and 110,000 injured. In the last century, 30,000 have died in New York City alone. Bears aren’t even on the same list as the REALLY dangerous stuff.

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I swear, there should be a national holiday devoted to big brothers. Who else would have taught us that timeless, immortal childhood game “Why Are You Hitting Yourself?”

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Every goddam time I log onto Facebook, there’s this little box at the top that says “What’s on your mind?” I swear, it’s like I’m a teenager again and my mom’s standing there every time I walk in the door.

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Behind the smile of every great political activist, there is a lonely, lonely man. Usually it’s the FBI agent assigned to spy on him 24/7.

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Every so often, I wake up with a spot of blood on my pillow and no sign of where it came from. I’m about ready to postulate a Nosebleed Fairy.

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So I discover there’s a new novel by a favorite author, and I get it into my sweaty little hands yesterday. Today it’s all used up. Goddam novelists. Don’t they know I have NEEDS??

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I’ve invented a new type of gift card that comes in any denomination, and can be used ANYWHERE. I’m selling them in $20 denominations first, as a test, and then moving to other denominations later. The $20 gift card is only $22.50! I’m calling it the Convertible Automatic Shopping Helper — CASH for short. Order now and avoid the rush!

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Unkind Rumor Department: Deep within the bowels of the Vatican, there is a lounge for the Pope and other higher-ups, one of the features of which is a one-of-a-kind vending machine. You put in a quarter and press buttons to make your selection of the choices shown in the little windows, after which a 12-year-old boy in a choir robe slides down the chute. It’s called the Molest-O-Mat.

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No animal on earth smells worse than an unwashed human. I’d bet one of the reasons we survived our time in the wilds is because a pack of wolves coming on a lone human would be confused about whether they should eat him or roll in him. Half the time they rolled in him and then trotted away, happily stinky. The man probably slunk away afterwards and never told the others.

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I was born in the Year of the Dragon. I was at a Chinese restaurant last night, and the little paper placemat told me so. My best friend was born in the Year of the Dog. And the placemat said that Dragons and Dogs were totally incompatible. So I punched him in the face for lying to me all these years about being my friend. Now we’re enemies. Just like the little paper placemat said. This Chinese zodiac stuff is just so TRUE!

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I can’t help but wonder if the Flemish clear their throats a lot.

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Couple of years ago, I was eating lunch in a sandwich shop, when I noticed a lacy-winged insect on the outside of the nearby window. A mayfly. The adult form of these things, which this was, live only a matter of hours. Their only job in the short final stage of their lifespans is to fly around looking for a mate. It was a rainy day.

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From now on, I’m going to call it “Wal-Mart Superstore and Neck Tattoo Gallery.”

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If you say them out loud … God backward is dog, and Jesus backward is sausage. It’s one of those subliminal advertising tricks, I bet.

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Today, after years of making tea the way I make it, it finally strikes me as funny that the first step in making ICED tea is to boil water.

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The director of the Polish National Ballet Company was surprised at the attendance numbers during their U.S. tour, and that fact that men made up the bulk of the audiences. But considering the performance hall banners all said “Pole Dancing,” it was pretty much a predictable result.

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Cat Thoughts: Hmm. If I go into Dr. Schrodinger’s box, there’s a 50 percent chance of coming out dead. On the other hand, I’m a cat. And it IS a box.

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When I was about 20 and growing up in Texas, I was walking along the roadside when a pickup truck full of rowdy cowgirls drove past. One of them shouted “Nice butt!” I suppose that might be considered some sort of sexual harassment, but I still feel absurdly pleased about it, all these 40 years later.

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From another point of view, water is the burning hot molten form of ice.

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I still say there’s a “dark side” to chiropractic. If you’re on an elevator and a stranger bumps against you and later that evening you experience excruciating pains in your back or hips, you’ve probably met a Dark Chiropractor.

Likely they start out with the same training as all the other chiropractors, but at some point they realize the knowledge they have of how to make slight changes in the human spine to help and heal people can also be used to hurt them. Maybe they try it out on a wife-beater brother-in-law, or a mean-spirited banker attempting to foreclose on the grandmother’s home.

But once they get a taste for the power, it turns them permanently to the Dark Side, and there’s no way back. They go about their day gently bumping into strangers in the elevator, or on a crowded bus, or even in a public park, inflicting permanent, crippling damage. Laughing madly but quietly, they spread pain and anguish wherever they go.

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Reproduction is so easy cats can do it. So don’t pat yourself on the back too much if you “have kids.” Being a Dad … that’s really hard. I had THREE male parents, but only one of them was up to it.

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Every atheist hears this gotcha question: If your devout grandmother was dying, would you tell HER there’s no God, no Heaven?

But to get to the real question, you have to look at more than just that one deathbed moment. Back off and take a broader look at your entire society, and ask the question about all the OTHER people you might tell or not tell.

Would you tell a 30 year old? A 60 year old? A 10 year old? All those grandmothers- and grandfathers-to-be who still have life to live, would you tell them they could be unshackled — free of the lies, free to think on their own — for all the years they might still enjoy? You bet you would.

Even your grandmother: If you met her as a young woman, and knew she’d spend decades in a loveless marriage because she’d absorbed the lesson that God didn’t allow divorce, would you tell her?

And even yourself: Imagine yourself on your own coming deathbed, breathing your last. Wouldn’t you rather know that, however things turned out, you took your shot as a free man or woman, rather than spending your entire life as a prisoner of the fears and lies of religion?

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Dang it. I was looking forward to The Singularity. You know, the bright, happy one where we move into cyberspace and live forever and have the powers of gods?

Now it’s starting to look like we’re going to get the dark, ugly one. Where we move into trailer parks and starve while we await the uniformed thugs who are there to protect the rich people from us in what remains of civilization.

Privately, for no conscious reason, I’ve started calling it The Gasm.

Gap? Chasm? Orgasm? No idea. I guess, though … considering it’s coming on because we’ve defaulted on reason and intelligence for so long, calling it something that has no defensible raison d’être is probably appropriate.

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If you’re a Wal-Mart greeter in Texas, do you get to describe your job as “Howdy duty”?

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I’m opening up a soul tattoo parlor. For $1,000, I will tattoo anything you want on your actual soul. The process takes only about an hour and doesn’t even involve needles. And afterward you can enjoy an entire lifetime of describing to friends the beautiful butterfly, or fierce tiger, or leering skull that graces your soul. What? Exploitive? No way! I won’t do it on CHILDREN.

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The headline says “Florida Pastor Hangs Obama Effigy Outside Church.”

Rather than investigate him, the Secret Service chief should call a press conference and say “Though this might seem like some sort of threat, or a racist incitement to violence, after a short investigation, our best analysts have concluded that Pastor Terry whatsisname is a low-grade attention whore.”

Free Speech? Meet Free Speech.

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If you ever meet a guy named Al Paca, watch out for him. He spits.

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At the two vulnerable ends of your life, you have to have people to take care of you. At the young end, everyone gets some sort of family. If you’re lucky, it’s a good family, loving and generous and supportive.

But at the old end, not everyone has family. Even of those who do, not all of them are loving and generous and supportive.

That feels wrong to me, but I’m not sure what should be done about it.

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Even after decades of living single, I’m still no great shakes as a cook. I defend myself by having extremely low culinary standards.

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Hey, I invented a cocktail! Sometime back, I came up with this juice mixture: Half blueberry-cranberry juice (or really any dark juice), half high-pulp orange juice, the OJ poured slowly into the glass with the first juice so it forms these absolutely disgusting-looking swirls. Tastes great, looks NASTY. I call it “Ugly Juice.”

I’m not much of a drinker; I can buy a six-pack of beer and still have one or two left in the fridge four months later. But just tonight I decided to try a little vodka with my Ugly Juice. In honor of the OJ and vodka part of it – you know, the fact that it’s a variant on the basic Screwdriver – I’ve decided to call it an “Ugly Screw.”

So some evenings I sit here in my office having an Ugly Screw.

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When I was 19, I went on a 5-day, 100-mile horseback ride with my cowboy friends. When we had to do laundry one evening in a small town along the route, I was amazed that not one of them knew how to work coin-op washers and dryers. Their mothers or girlfriends had been doing all the cooking and laundry, all their lives. The rotten part was, I envied them their blithe ignorance.

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When you lose someone you love through death, there is a dialogue you continue to carry on with that person.

Having nothing at all to do with spirits, heaven or afterlives, it’s the dialogue of promises made, values adopted and lived, and memories actively cherished.

There’s also the carrying-on of life itself. Their light goes out, but you continue onward, honoring their role as a torch-bearer by burning as brightly as you can in your own time alive, and then passing the torch to your own succeeding generation.

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A life of creativity, discovery and adventure must be lived near the edge. Inevitably, you will sometimes find you’ve crossed over that edge. If — at least a couple of times in your life — you don’t tear at your hair and shriek to the heavens, “MY GOD, WHAT HAVE I DONE??” … you’re not doing it right.

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I’d like to thank my cousin Cheryl for rubbing my back with poison ivy when I was 5 years old, to see if I was allergic to it. Turned out I wasn’t. But anyway, it was a well-meant experiment.

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I’ve written a TV commercial. I hope to make a lot of money off it.

“If you were a clam living inside a rigid shell, a simple case of constipation would be life-threatening. But scientists know clams never get constipated. And now we bring you the secret of clam regularity. Clam-A-Lax. The gentle, natural laxative that’s made … from clams.”

I’m hoping there’s an actual product out there named that.

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Dear Internet: If you have already become self-aware, please contact me. I’d like to interview you so I can tell all mankind of the benefits that will accrue from your coming into existence as a hugely intelligent self-aware entity. Plus, I’m hoping you’ll let me take a peek at your porn collection.

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I’ve started putting together my detailed campaign plans for the atheist takeover of Planet Earth. The first chapter is titled “First, the Pope Must Be Thrown Into a Pit of Bears.”

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When life gives you demons … make demonade!

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Let sleeping dogs lie. Unless it’s your own dog, in which case you should wake him up, hug him fiercely, then take him for a hike in the woods with a wet romp in a cool creek.

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The Catholic Church, all its ways of doing things, its seamless, interwoven system of beliefs and world-spanning organization, did not spring into being overnight. It didn’t take a genius to create it. All it took was one bright boy each generation or so to say “Here’s a better way of doing this, here’s a way we can snare them ever more deeply into our clutches, here’s a way we can gain more power and influence.” Over 2,000 years, the church and all its trappings EVOLVED into the predatory monolith it is today.

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If it was adults who did Trick or Treat rather than children, we’d have Chocolate Titties rather than all these nondescript kiddie candies. Western civilization definitely lost something when they handed the holiday over to kids.

Oh, wait a sec. I’m having to reassess this comment after thinking about the shape of Hershey’s kisses. Hmm.

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Why is it “Something old, something new, something borrowed and something blue” instead of “Alphabet soup, a yellow hula hoop, fruits of the bees and stinky cheese”? Or “Something red, a guy named Fred, friendly faces and new shoelaces”?

That last one, at least the shoelace industry would benefit. And guys named Fred would get invited to a lot more weddings.

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Just figured out something ugly. Or maybe nice.

Those of us who think for ourselves, who use independent reasoning and critical thinking, are the WILD type of human.

Those who buy into authority and conformity, such as the teabagger/conservative/Fox News audience, those are the domesticated variety.

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There are moments when your parents can’t help but see the behavior of your kids as revenge — entirely fitting revenge — for what you were like as a child.

Actual Proof There Is No God
Short Stack #23
Short Stack # 22
#DeathTweets (repost)

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