The Occasional Joke

Nurse: Patient's name?

Centurion: Marcus Licinius Crassus

Nurse: And his date of birth?

Centurion: 115 BC.

Nurse: All right. And what is he here for?

Centurion: Cataphract surgery.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Senator Elija Creek Reacts to Ann Arbor Deer Management Plan

We're pleased to have another guest post by Senator Creek.

There are a lot of people wanderin' around my office these days. Some of 'em, I even recognize. This one young gal, for example, is the one who's always giving me pieces of paper. I keep tryin' to tell her I have plenty of paper, thanks, you keep it. But she doesn't. She makes me keep it. It's gettin' hard to see around the stacks of it. But it dawned on me, maybe it's a security measure. Givin' me something to hide behind, you know. In case that Trump fella busts in or maybe one of my constituents.

Anyway, this morning she handed me another piece of paper. She wanted to know what I thought of it. "Well," I said, "it's flat. And sort of white. Got nice black ink on it, too."

That wouldn't do, though. She said she meant the content of it. What it said, you know. Why didn't she say so in the first place, is my question. But so, I read it.

Turns out, it was all about these guys in Ann Arbor and how they're all worked up over managin' deer. With my eyesight bein' what it is, I read it as "beer management" at first, but the young lady straightened me out on that. And she said it'd be a good idea if I could address the issue. So, here goes.

First of all, I hear that they got some kind of college there in that town, and that a lot of people hang around it, talkin' about management. Now, I didn't know that managin' deer was that much of a problem, with regard to the nation's economy, but I can't see, if it is, why it's any more difficult than managin' anything else. As my old pal, Walt Kelly, suggested, time was when a worker'd be happy if you gave him fifty cents and a pat on the back with a shovel. But I guess with deer, it'd be a little ambiguous just where to deliver the feedback. They're pretty fast, too.

Another thing I noted is that somebody in that town don't know how to spell. I had to read that word, "cull", five or six times before I got it. For your future guidance (as they say to me a lot around the Senate), that's spelled with a "K" and an "I". I looked it up. A town like that, you'd think they wouldn't make that kind o' mistake.

But then, I got to the real crucks of the matter. That's "crucks". A cross between "crocks" and that Ted Crux fella. Throw in "crooks", too, while you're at it. Perfectly good word.

Anyway, the crucks of it is in the details, as it usually is. Details without a crucks is like a candidate without voters. Like Rick Perry. Or Millard Filmore. Yeah, I know he's dead. So's Rick Perry. But my point is, they're gonna have these sharkshooters, runnin' around after dark, with silenced gums, trying to cull things. Now, that may sound sensible to you. It did to me, for a while. But then I looked up Ann Arbor on a map, and dang if it ain't a good long way to anywhere you'd expect to find sharks.Twenty, thirty miles, at least. So I went back to the woman who brought this up and I said, "This here is incomprehensible to the ordinary mind. And where we gonna find one o' them?"

"Sharp," she said. "Sharp shooters." So I went back and re-read it with my glasses on. But I still couldn't make head or tail out of it. If you can, well, I suppose you could talk to the lady in my office. I'd give you her phone number, but I can't remember her name. Or if she has one. A phone, I mean. So probably the best thing is just to hope it goes away. I know I do.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Live from the Ann Arbor Art Fair!

Ladies and Gentlemen, please join me here at this summer's fabulous Ann Arbor Art Fair! I'm delighted to present our very own Senator Elijah Creek!

You know, all this here ... art, I guess it is, that we had to walk through to get up here is certainly artful. We had to dodge a lot of it, or we'd still be back there on State Street, talkin' to those people in the looney booths. But anyway, art. Talk about art, they told me.

I was readin' a book a while ago, a book by some British feller. Mudguard, I think it was. Coupling. Mudguard Coupling, that was it, more or less. I was a bit distracted while I was readin' it, what with that McConnell youngster ... you know him, that boy from Kentucky ... goin' on about this and that. I tried to get him interested in something else, something besides just beatin' his gums all the time, but he wasn't willin'. "Don't beat your gums like that," I said. "It's bad for 'em. Beat something else, like a dead horse." I even offered to loan him a dead horse, but no. He wouldn't listen. I told him nobody else was, either, but he didn't seem to care.

Anyhow, I was readin' this story by the guy with the auto parts name, and one of the people in it said "That's art! Flat art!" I missed the drift, a bit, because of all the hullabaloo in the background, and so I'm not sure what he was referrin' to. The author. Of the book. But since it was the first thing I could think of when they pushed me up the steps to this platform I'm standin' on, I said to myself, "Art. Flat art."

Well, I tell a lie, there, to be truthful. It was the second thing. The first thing I thought was "It is a far, far better thing I do ..." But I didn't want to lose my head, so I went on to the second thing. And lookin' around, I see a lot of it. Art. Nice and flat, some of it. But along here, in front of me, there are a bunch of tents with art that isn't flat. It's more round, unless I'm misled.

That's pronounced "miss lead", they tell me, by the way. For years, I'd been pronouncin' it "mysled", but no such luck. Preacher used to talk about innocent youth bein' mysled by the flash girls who walk in the city ... or was it the other way around? Flash girls bein' mysled by preachers? I remember, back in the days of my youth ... What? Oh, right. They're remindin' me not to talk about what I did, back in the days of my youth. Don't know why. There isn't any one of you here today who hasn't. Done 'em. The things they don't want me to talk about.

But anyway, I think we should avoid invidious distinctions between flat art and the roundy kind. We shouldn't be invidious. Not like that Chinese doctor. The invidious one. The invidious doctor Foobar Chew or something like that. Still, invidious or perfidious, it hardly seems to matter to all these folks wanderin' back and forth, lookin' at the art. Some of 'em even look up here, on occasion. And I can see they're wonderin' as they're wanderin', who is that old guy up there and what's he talkin' about? And why?" And let me just say, in closin', that I don't know either.

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Senator Creek to Introduce Healthcare Bill

Ann Arbor, June 3, 1915 (WCNS) US Senator Elijah Creek (L, Michigan), spoke at a press conference this morning in Washington, held to announce his plans to introduce a completely new national healthcare bill. Senator Creek's address is reproduced here.

Hello? Is this thing Ron? I mean, Ron, is this on thing? The thing, you know, is it on? Okay. Good. Don't want to waste anybody's time, talking to some off thing.

Now, about that word, 'off'. I've been usin' it for years, off and on, and you know, I wonder why I haven't ever stopped. Stopped to wonder, that is. Wait. Who wrote this foolishness? I stop to wonder all the time! Oh, about the word 'off', eh? Well, why didn't you say so? I did. Just then.

Anyway, what do we mean 'off'? I tried to giggle it on the Internet, but all I got was some nonsense about bug repellant. I've known plenty of bugs in my time, and most of 'em were repellant enough without having some goop sprayed on 'em. And lizards? Don't get me started.

Healthcare. That's what it says on the card that young fella's holdin' up. No, wait. There's more. It says 'Healthcare Bill'. I don't know anybody by that name, though. Used to hang around the Orgone Box with old Wilhelm Reich. Some people called him 'Healthcare Bill' because they thought he needed some. The Orgone Box was a cafe' and hookah bar in North Lansing, by the way. I always thought those DEA fellas were too hard on 'em. The owners.

Now he's gone and written something else on the card. "Your Healthcare Bill" it says now. Oh, "My" healthcare bill? He's nodding his head. Up and down. You oughta get that looked at, Son. You're too young to have your head flopping around like that. I recall once, up in Ishpeming or somewhere like that, I went to a doctor. A veteran, he was. Said so right on his sign. Spelled it wrong, but I won't hold that against him. Anyway, I wanted him to do something about my rheumatiz. "Where is he," the doc says. Well, the conversation went downhill from there. He ended up putting a big cone-shaped thing around my neck. I wore it for a while, but it was hard to see where I was goin'. Still have it, though. I wear it instead of a necktie when I go to embassy dinners. Helps me understand what the foreigners are sayin'.

But when I got the bill from all that, I said to myself and three or four other people, "This here Healthcare Bill is incomprehensible!" And they couldn't understand it. 'Incomprehensible'. They didn't know what it meant. Means 'stupid', by the way, if you don't know what it means, either. And that got me all up on my high horse about it. After I fell off, as I usually do, I got up on my short horse and rode over to the Senate. The Senate was another hookah bar, you understand. And we talked about it, healthcare, that is. The bartender and I. And he said, "You oughta do something about it." And so I did. I am. Now, finally.

What's that? Oh, he's pointin' at the card again. Now it says "Explain it". What? I was explaining something, there, but you made me lose my thread. Now he's back to "Healthcare Bill", again. You know, I'm not sure I recognize him. I usually do, those kids who hang around and sort of give me a shove in one direction or another. But this one ... I don't know, he might be a demonstrator or a perpetrator or one of those "ator" types. There's usually a lot of 'em around, holdin' up signs, I notice. In fact, I was coming through the airport just yesterday, and there was a guy protesting something called the "Kardashian Party". I don't really know any of those Russian types, but a party is a party so I said ...

What? Oh, good. Time's up. Anyway, vote for me or even this Healthcare Bill fella, whoever he is. I'll see you all back at the Senate, those of you who are allowed, anyway.