Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Friday, February 19, 2010

The Robot

John was a salesman's delight when it came to any kind of unusual gimmicks. His wife, Marsha, had long ago given up trying to get him to change.

One day John came home with another one of his unusual purchases. It was a robot that John claimed was actually a lie detector.

It was about 5:30 that afternoon when Tommy, their 11 year old son, returned home from school. Tommy was over 2 hours late.

"Where have you been? Why are you over 2 hours late getting home?" asked John.

"Several of us went to the library to work on an extra credit project," said Tommy. The robot walked around the table and slapped Tommy, knocking him completely out of his chair.

"Son," said John, "this robot is a lie detector, now tell us where you really were after school."

"We went to Bobby's house and watched a movie." said Tommy.

"What did you watch?" asked Marsha.

"The Ten Commandments." answered Tommy.

The robot went around to Tommy and once again slapped him, knocking him off his chair.

With his lip quivering, Tommy got up, sat down and said, "I am sorry I lied. We really watched a tape called Sex Queen."

"I am ashamed of you son," said John. "When I was your age, I never lied to my parents."

The robot walked around to John and delivered a whack that nearly knocked him out of his chair.

Marsha doubled over in laughter, almost in tears and said, "Boy, did you ever ask for that one! You can't be too mad with Tommy. After all, he is your son!"

The robot walked around to Marsha and knocked her out of her chair.
Credit this one to my cousin Deb, in Buffalo. Thanks, Deb!

Sunday, February 7, 2010

It Depends on Your Point of View

Two female co-workers are having a conversation at work.

Woman 1: Did you have good sex last night?

Woman 2: No, it was a disaster... my husband came home, ate his dinner in 3 minutes, got on top of me, finished having sex in 4 minutes, rolled over and fell asleep in 2 minutes. How about you?

Woman 1: Oh it was amazing! My husband came home. He took me out to a romantic dinner. After dinner we took a walk for an hour. When we came home he lit the candles around the house and we had an hour of foreplay. After foreplay we had an hour long session of fantastic sex and then we talked for an hour. It was like in a fairytale!

At the same time, their husbands are talking at work.

Husband 1: Did you have good sex last night?

Husband 2: Yes, it was great! I came home, dinner was on the table, I ate, screwed my wife and fell asleep. What about you?

Husband 1: It was horrible. I came home, there's no dinner because they cut the electricity because I didn't pay the bill. In return I had to take my wife out to dinner and the dinner was so expensive that we didn't have money for a cab. So we had to walk home for an hour – and when we got home, there was no electricity, so I had to light fucking candles all over the house! I was so angry that I couldn't get it up for an hour and then I couldn't come for another hour. After I finally did, I was so mad and aggravated that I couldn't fall asleep and my wife was jabbering away for another hour!

Friday, February 5, 2010

Oppose Segregation

In Yiddish or English, The Forward has been an important source of news for and about the American Jewish community for nearly a century. In its most modern incarnation, it remains a central institution.

My friend Michel provides a lot of blog fodder, usually jokes. Today, he's called my attention to an editorial that deserves wider attention.

I'm proud ARZA and the IRAC fight this sort of thing. If you agree, please consider joining one and supporting the other.


Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Can Lemmings Drink Kool-Aid?

We've had an interesting conversation about the phrase "Kool-Aid drinkers" on my shul's listserv today.

Here's my take on the topic:

I’m sure it’s just me, but the initial etymology of the phrase “Kool-Aid drinkers" is making me shudder every time I read it. It’s become ubiquitous. Pundits from Arianna Huffington on the left to Bill O’Reilly on the right attach it to nearly anyone who supports something they oppose or opposes something they support.

Over 900 dead, including many children.

When I’m
  • doctrinaire,
  • intractable,
  • incorrigible, or
  • impervious to rational argument

about some “ism,” please call me something like

  • ostrich,
  • acolyte,
  • lemming,
  • dolt, or
  • dupe.




Someone I respect responded along the lines that words' meanings evolve, and that we can't change that.

In response, I said:

But we can still choose our words.

Gyp has come to mean cheat or commit fraud. But it started out as a derogatory slur against Gypsies. I don't use it.

I never knew why a police van for carrying multiple prisoners was called a "paddy wagon." When I learned why, I stopped using the term.

Jews rightly oppose most Nazi and Holocaust metaphors. They desecrate a sacred memory. Forgetting that fact, some religious leaders in Israel started using Nazi comparisons when Rabin and Peres were thought to be leading Israel away from G-d's will.

It helped cost Rabin his life.

The cynicism of the first use of the phrase "Kool-Aid drinkers" after Jonestown illustrates its hatefulness. It's what Marion Barry's paid political strategists called the pool of voters predisposed to vote for Barry in his first post-incarceration run for public office.

Words matter.

As I said, maybe I'm the only one this bugs. If so, so be it. I'd still rather be called a lemming or an ostrich.

Whaddya think?