Tuesday, January 23, 2007

bilge bungling economics

Today in the news: A wanton sexaholic has been arrested for converting to ascetism without prior notification at the sperm bank where he contributed regularly.

In other local news, several dogs have given birth to kittens, officials baffled.

In international news, A Princess of an obscure former Soviet satelite country (which has recently reinstated the monarchy) has appeared on television to protest the senseless slaughter of defenseless soya beans to meet the demands of the insatiable vegetarian commodities market.

Today's news, on the hour, with up-to-the-minute updates on the latest futures prices of next year's pork bellies, pork rinds, bananas and prize winning boxers.

B8AFM in Newport, New Jersey for all the news that's fit to spread malicious rumours about on national public radio!

Sunday, January 21, 2007

Virginia Key Express

Devilish things were brewing at the old yarn factory. Suave Rico, international economist and world's greatest lover, wondered whether someone, somewhere, out there in the dark green city, was actually enjoying a hot coffee in a franchise cafe.

He was perched on the roof like a concrete pidgeon, waiting for his arch nemesis, the Naysayer, to make a move.

He thought about a lot of things while he waited. He thought about his last superhero seminar and how he could do it differently. It seemed that there was a certain order to the exercises. Stacked so that little ideas that were easy to get to were at the beginning of the seminar and then for getting to the bigger ideas (ideas big enough to be called 'concepts' or 'paradigms') there were a number of stories and metaphors and most of all, space to breathe and think and discuss and apply the superhero seminar insights into each individual superheroes' personal crime fighting practice, with clear streetside aims and explicit superheroing functions such as 'justice league rapport building' or 'justice league task management' or 'preparation of a crime fighting plan for the evening.'

Suave Rico realized he'd not been paying attention to his surroundings. Had the Naysayer delivered the stolen seminar materials to the mob?

Tune in next broadcast to find out!

Saturday, January 20, 2007

baking fecund legal

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"I'd never seen so many stories in just one sign," said Riment, a glassblower.
"So did you stay there?" asked Ledbetter, an editor.
Riment turned to look at Ledbetter, imagined his face by the neon glow of that sign, painted in the key of mardi gras, and made a difficult decision.
"Nah, I got a better price at the place down the street."

Friday, January 19, 2007

reselling bat excelsior

It was another foul weekend at the 'Svengali Home for Abused Reality Consultants.'

Jerry Spritzer, a recent addition to the home, considered his glass of lemonade as he sat on the home's spacious veranda. He was getting soaked but this did not bother him. He was thinking 'deep thoughts.'

It was the sales force meetings that had eventually gotten to him. He regretted many things but most of all he regretted turning those young fresh-faced, idealistic sales people into tense, screwed-up, razor sharp sales sharks.

It hadn't always been like this.

Once, long ago, before his employers had realized the difference between a happy employee and a productive employee, he would have been hired to help those lost souls relax.

He used to teach breathing exercises that lowered stress.

Recently he'd been teaching people how to increase their daily stress.

He'd toughened so many skins on those young sales people that they'd need several expensive therapists to get back to humanity.

Jerry admired his lemonade in the rain. Consoled himself with a continuous loop of words his Dad had taught him: "You gotta be twisted like a corkscrew to fit this corkscrew world, son."

Jerry Smiled, his Dad would be proud.

Monday, January 15, 2007

desalinize heating titmouse

"Ah come on, haven't we got enough mechanical killer barnyard animals at home already?"

It was the third day of the world military gadget convention and Janice Bodice was struggling to keep up with Katherine Overture's buying spree. Janice was the practical side of the partnership, their boss was counting on her to stop Katherine from spending their tiny island democracy's entire defense budget on another collection of wifi enabled anti-personnel key fobs.

"But these mechanical killer barnyard animals will really catch the enemy by surprise!" insisted Katherine as Janice dragged her away from the 'Bovine Terror' table and over to the refreshment counter while making every effort to ignore the  stream of enthusiasm gushing from her lips.

"Enough Kate!"
"But weren't those ducky-wucksies with laser guided rifles so cutsee-wutsie?"

Janice often wonderered if Kate hadn't been a cartoon character in a previous life, or possibly a mime and this babble was some kind of karmic compensation?

Before too long, Kate had polished off her hastily ordered and hastily consumed coffee and barrelled past Janice towards the Town and Country Explosives and Incendiaries table where even at this distance Janice could hear her raving over the new batch of claymore type mines disguised as garden gnomes. She resigned herself to the fact that they'd be taking back at least a half dozen samples to present to their government.

"Oh well, at least the Liberal Conservatives are in power this term, they won't kick up too much of a fuss," she muttered to no one but herself.

dangling earnings nebulosity

Froederick Smith worked in an office. He was conscientious, he was dutiful, he made an effort to do things on time, with purpose.

Froederick toiled. He believed in toiling. Toiling was a good thing. Froederick believed in the work ethic. Even his Puritain neighbour from Pennsylvania admired his work ethic. Froederick toiled to uphold his reputation for diligence. It was hard earned. built up over many years.

Froederick had perfected the art of toiling. He could set his mind to any task and toil away at it. However boring the task might begin, once he got into a task he left a trail of excitment in his wake.

Froederick had a magical power. He could toil away at things with such concentration that in the end even dullards and procrastinators were convinced that Froederick always got the most interesting jobs.

Was it because Froederick put a little of himself in everything he did?
Was it because if anybody works at something long enough, it becomes interesting?
Was it because Froederick had, as some of his collegues suggested, a relative in upper management?
What was it?

Froederick wasn't any help himself, at countless integration meetings and team-building seminars he'd been asked what his secret was, often the person doing the asking was the guru running the seminar. Froederick got embarassed at such questions and found excuses to be elsewhere.

It shouldn't be that difficult, he thought to himself. All he'd ever done is follow one rule and ask two questions. His whole life, this one rule and two questions had been enough to get the ball rolling, to overcome his natural inertia.

Froederick felt the urge to lollygag about the house in bunny slippers and drink refreshingly expensive VSOP Otard Cognac just like anyone else.

But this one rule and two questions got him past the urges:

1. Whatever you don't want to do, do it first!
2. Are you focused?
3. Why don't you try it a different way?

Could it be that easy? It was easier to believe the gossip.

So people kept asking.

One day, Froederick had it, a guru had asked him for the upteenth time about his string of results and Froederick just snapped:

"Arghh!!! I-unleashed-my-synergistic- competencies-through-a-frame-of-congruent-self- representational-timelines-and-stepped-into-my-own-self-actualized-ego-concept-without-hesitation-leveraging-massive-amounts of-total-charismatic-energy-released-by-my unencumbering-of-deep-childhood-repressioons!!!!!!ARghhh!!!!!!!"

You know what? The guru believed him?

It just goes to show, what exactly it showed, Froederick wasn't sure. It sure showed something.

At least no one bothered him again, they were too busy rushing off to improve themselves with SLC (Sociologic Lateral Cogitation) pronounced "Slick."

Sunday, January 14, 2007

sleuth earnings humdinger

Today on Lifestyles of the Reasonably Comfortable and Reclusive we're joined by Johnson Senderwax, A published author under several household pseudonyms.

Regular viewers of LOTRCAR will have noticed that the customary establishing shots are absent on this episode.

In fact I, your host, Jeremy Brocklehurst, have not been permitted to reveal anything about the exterior of Mr. Senderwax's home.

Yes! Finally, in the half-season long history of LOTRCAR we have made contact with an actual full-concept hermit!

"Mr. Senderwax."
"You can call me Joe."
"Joe, thank you, and how long have you been a recluse?"
"Oh, since I could afford it, Jeremy, about 12 years."
"You have a lovely home here, and the lap pool is quite unusual."
"Heh, yeah, my architect nearly had a brain fart-can I say fart?"
"-it's cable, you can speak freely Joe."
"Superb, okay, so, he nearly had a brain fart when I asked for an underground lap pool 12 feet wide and 300 feet long."
"And the reason?"
"I always wanted to watch tv while swimming so the floor of the lap pool is optical grade glass with bank after bank of widescreen high definition tv's. no other light sources."
"What about sound?"
"waterproof wireless bone induction headphones, I subcontracted to Oakley and H2Audio for those."
"And how many laps does a whole movie take?"
10, 15 if it's a long movie."
"Heh, not really, I'm not as young as I used to be!"
"And is it true that if you slow down-"
"-yeah, the image starts to dim! I installed that myself! Motion sensors in the ceiling!"

Jeremy turned to face the camera.

"After the commercial break, we'll be visiting Mr. Senderwax's Planetarium! Bought in Toronto Canada and lovingly dissassembled and reassembled on Mr. Senderwax's private estate!"

[commercial break]

During the commercial break:

"Nothing beats the McLaughlin Planetarium for an unforgettable experience Jeremy."
"I can't believe the Royal Ontario Museum sold it, It's one of the best in North America and now it's ensuite to your bedroom?"
"They didn't know what they had, it was my deal of a lifetime."
"What do you watch there?"
"Stars mostly, southern hemisphere constellations, and laser shows."

[end commercial break]

Friday, January 12, 2007

penguin banana escapism

"So are you worried about China?"
"Not really, the big margins are in services."
"But China is producing more than products, it's also producing a skilled workforce."
"How skilled?"
"I heard one international company wanted to set up a fab there and put out a call for managers with Ph.Ds in chemical engineering and got 15000 applications that fit the brief."
"That's doesn't bother me either."
"Are you serious?!?"
"Listen, there's more money today than there was yesterday, the global economy continues to grow as people add value."
"But what about jobs?"
"If you wanna build a dam, buy some heavy earth-moving equipment, if you wanna 'create jobs' then shucks, all you need is a lot more men and a lot of spoons."
"I still don't get it."
"Money isn't the fuel in the economic engine, it's the grease, the lubricant."
"Yeah, so?"
"China invests much of it's profit right back in the countries where it sells it's goods, too much demand for the Yu-an would ultimately make exports unprofitable"
"Hey, I heard they devalued their currency to protect their export business."
"Some people accuse china of dumping their goods in the west to destroy any competition."
"Ah, well, social change always entails social disruption."
"But let's get back to the subject, what was it?"
"Oh yeah, I think I'll get the hot and sour soup and crispy duck."

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

coronation jubilant gospel

Nine days after the holiday and 8 entries behind schedule on their school science project, Nicholas Pump and Spavin Kesey were huddled under a soggy blanket in the hard January rain and Nicholas was punching glumly at the keys of Spavin's superphone while Spavin held up the fragile booster aerial that rose above their grim faces into the pea soup sky above their pimpled teenaged heads.

Nick and Spavin were planning a miracle.

Spavin heard Nick gasp.

"Spew! heads up!" roared Nick greatly beyond what one might expect from a neck the size of an oyster.

"Is it coming?" yelled back Spavin.

As if in answer to his question the sky ripped loose a wild lightning bolt and cracking shards of thunder.

"It's hit the gymnasium!" yelled Spavin.

"Screw that! ," said Nick, eyes glued to the superphone's 3 inch screen, "it's coming through!"

"All of it!?" said Spavin, Nick scanned through the compromised Board of Education wireless data.

"Every test, every exam, every grade of every student!" Nick howled back.

"In the whole school?"

"Nah," Nick grinned at Spavin's downcast face through the rain, "the whole city!"


Spavin and Nick threw off the blanket and allowed themselves a moment to dance like crazy, no, eccentric, fools, because everyone knows that the rich can't be crazy.

Mission accomplished, they hot-dogged to Nick's mom's car.

Words like: Fiduciary, Fiscal, Financial, a lot of F-words, danced behind their contact lenses.

Sunday, January 07, 2007

eight eight eight

 It occured one morning at the heavenly gates. St. Peter looked up from his ledger to find a wild duck, a battery farm chicken and a carrot standing in front of him.

"Well, how did you die then?" asked the saint while the guardian angels looked on suspiciously with their flaming swords half drawn from their carbon fibre sheaths.

"I had a nice life," said the duck, "I lived in a protected area and once a year there was a lot of noise but it never did me much bother until..."

"Yes?" said St. Peter.

"...I found out the noise was connected to something called a shotgun and wouldn't you know it? I ended up shot?"

"Very good, welcome to heaven," said St. Peter, "now what about you two hmm?"

"I lived my life in misery and darkness, laying eggs and being fed growth hormone and antibiotics until I got too ill to lay eggs and then horrible things happened to me involving electric prods, cutting tools, boiling water and sharp metal teeth, I suppose I should be upset about it but strangely I don't seem to mind," said the battery farm chicken.

"Being upset requires glands, ma'am, and as you are deceased, it is only natural you have left your glands behind, I'm sure you won't trouble yourself, and what about you?"

"I was just hanging around with my family when something pulled me by my leaves and before you know it I was plonked on a wooden cutting board and cut up, totally defenseless!" said the carrot.

"Welcome, welcome, all three of you welcome, one last question before you all enter heaven," said St. Peter, "due to the large volume of traffic we receive in heaven, should it become necessary for you to be reincarnated, any requests?"

The duck, chicken and carrot looked at each other while thinking about each of the stories they had heard.

"I wanna be a duck!" they said in unison.

"It's way better than how I lived my life," said the chicken.

"You're telling me bub," said a young cow suitable for veal who'd just arrived.

Very good, said St. Peter, Welcome to heaven!

They passed the heavenly gates.