Monday, September 27, 2004


Or, how to dawdle, loaf, or putter to your heart's content

In our time-conscious world -- minutes, hours, and days are only meaningful if they can be organized, measured, prioritized not to mention sliced and diced into "productive" and "non-productive" periods.

It seems anything deemed "time wasting" must be derided and then dropped from all "to do" lists. On the other hand, being "listless" (having no "to do" list or a short one) is a fate worse than death.

If you're not running around thither and yon, fear not. There will always be at least one quidnunc keen on telling you that your life lacks purpose. And, we all know what happens to people without goals and long "to do" lists. They become ill-fated "laggards, lippy "losers" or heaven forbid, "lounge lizards"!

"Fooling around" or, 'living in the moment", is for children and pets only. Grown-ups are not encouraged to dawdle, loaf, putter or simply take time out to smell the roses let alone talk to them. To engage in such "mindless" activities is to invite some incurable dis-ease. Such is life in Lollygaglessland.

However, not being a linear thinker helps when it comes to enjoying the art of lollygagging.

First, toss your cell phone, timepiece, and digital personal assistant for the day. Second, put on some comfy clothes -- or, if you're feeling frightfully funky, just a birthday suit. Next, find a comfortable and cozy thing to sit upon. This is important. Doing so will take a load off your feet, and prevent your brain from becoming clogged, cluttered or crashing like your hapless personal computer. If all else fails, remember, rumination and regurgitation is not in the cards for you today!

So, let your mind wander anywhere it wants. And, stop fretting about the "to do" list" you just turfed along with your bleeping digital devices. Besides, when you do this, you create oodles of space for something you dearly yearn for, peace of mind.

Now that you're feeling all warm and fuzzy, try a bit of doodling, humming, whistling, or even tapping your toes. And, if you really get the urge to move, why not put on your favorite walking shoes and putter anywhere you like. Talk to plants and animals if you wish, and if you've got the gumption, why not strangers ... you just might enjoy what happens without any strings attached.

Lollygagging is all about "being" comfortable with yourself, in your own space and time. Forget all about doing things to win brownie points, gold stars, and frequent flyer miles. Unless you like trying to fit square holes into round pegs, just chill out, powder down, and enjoy life outside the blessed box.

And, when someone asks you what you're doing for the next five minutes, hour, or day...tell them your taking up the lost art of lollygagging. Then watch them furrow their brow as you wink, smile, and walk away.


Readers wishing to learn more about the origin of the word "lollygagging" should probably drop by the "word detective" and snoop around to your heart's content

For more on "fooling around", check out

And for those of you who haven't figured out the merits of communicating with furry critters yet, do take a wee peek at Chandra Clarke's musings on the subject at:

Remember what the 18th century American author, printer, scientist and diplomat Benjamin Franklin said, "The US Constitution does not guarantee happiness, only the pursuit of it. You have to catch up with it yourself."

Tuesday, September 21, 2004


Or, what to do while "Waiting for Godot"...

While some may say, "the world is going to Hades in a handbasket", I say "piffle!"

First, Hades isn't even on my "To Do" list for today or, for that matter, tomorrow. Second, "handbaskets" are only for those who enjoy carrying coals to Newcastle or some other Fool's Paradise.

Anyway, I prefer to think that life is what you make of it. So, enjoy every minute. And, when you've finished your "bowl full of cherries", fear not, there will be plenty of "pleasure pits" to enjoy, just mark my words!

Not one to gather moss under my feet, or pout about what to do while "Waiting for Godot", I've decided to share with you some odd jobs I've had to justify my existence, (but more importantly jam and peanut butter).

You'll note that none of the positions mentioned below have appeared in the newspaper under the heading, "jobs wanted". That's not surprising. After all, why would women want to reveal how to preserve their sanity amidst the chaos and clutter left behind by the magnificent men from Mars? (But that's another tangential story, worth at least one chapter in my next book, "Cautionary Tales from Martian Caves".

Where was I? ...ah yes, the "odd" jobs:
  • Whine & Cheese Party Hostess
  • Wing-It & Wet-Nurse Wonder Woman
  • Lost-and-Found Monitor & Bumbershoot Locator
  • Little Rubber Ducky Fundraiser
  • Fly-Swatting Summer Camp Counsellor
  • Bruxism Buster and Tooth Fairy Stand-In
  • Accredited Waffle Stomper & Bucker-Upper
  • Out-On-A-Limb Branch Coordinator
  • "Father-Knows-Best" Policy Analyst
  • Unplanned Gift Advisor to the Stork
  • Gourmet Bubble and Squeak Chef
  • Jolly Green Thumber
  • Petty Communications Officer
  • Brown Betty Botcherist
  • Escape Goat
  • Bugaboo Pest Control Officer
  • Troll Emergency Preparedness Planner
  • Merry-Making Missionary
  • Brown Bag Content Provider and Packing Specialist
  • Pet Rock Watcher & Hard Rock Player
  • Volunteer Burning Bush & Bucket Brigade Member
  • Medusa Makeover Artist
  • Bite the Bullet & Biscuit Project Leader
  • Dust Bunny Control Inspector
  • Pointy-Hat Designer & Gothic Clothing Seamstress
  • Certified Broomstick Operator
  • Brownie Point Counter
  • Horse Sense Philosopher
  • Magpie Manager
  • Road-Less-Travelled Recruiter
  • Suppository and Support Hosery Consultant
  • Snooze Alarmist
  • Prince Valiant & Prince Charming Skills Evaluator
  • Spotless Throne Room & Stop-Watch Housekeeping Director
  • Red Ribbon Recycler & Return Merchandise Expert
  • Stickey Wicket and Bad Karma Turnaround Tactician
  • Licensed Perfectionist & Procrastinator
  • Bungle-Conscious Breadwinner & Part-Time Banshee
  • Registered Owner of a Sling-Shot
  • Legal Pot Shot Shooter
  • Supreme Goddess of Glitch in the Wicked Wench Covey
  • Bluffoligist, Blurtologist & Bumpfologist
  • "The One And Only Boisterous Ballyhooing Bucksheeist"
So, when the boo-boos and lumps of life start getting you down, just put things into perspective. And don't forget, a little levity always defies gravity!


For an appreciation of the 'othersidedness' of our existence, do drop by these frolicksome sites, "Satiric Quill" at and "The Brothers Grinn" at

And for a really, really short version of this long-winded article, you might want to check out "Tittle Tattle Times" at

For an interesting twist on interviews with odd-job people take a gander at:

Saturday, September 18, 2004


Or, watch out for those hackneyed hooks in chick lit books

By Theolonius McTavish, a member of the The Quipping Queen's eclectic if not a tad egregious and eccentric entourage.

As I was trolling the Internet the other night, (an addictive past-time especially for somnambulant sleuths like me), I happened upon the “ultimate destination for women’s fiction”.

Scrolling down the contents of the popular romance novel site, low and behold, I found a tiny article tucked away entitled, “Top 10 Overused Euphemisms”.

Not being a "chick-lit" connoisseur, I was in over my head. No bodacious book club in town would have me as a member unless I spoke the ‘de rigueur’ libidinous lingo with ease and alacrity. And, knowing the titles of at least three "red-hot" bedtime books would assure me at least a foot in the door if not more.

Anyway, to make a long story short, the hatchet harridans over at Cinderella & Friends Publishing House suggested that all budding chick-lit(ters) avoid the following ho-hum clichés:

-- her heaving breasts -- his punishing kiss -- her liquid center --
-- like silk over steel -- her sensitive bud -- her honeyed sweetness --
-- a dance as old as time; his throbbing manhood; her pebbled
nubbins -- an intimate kiss

So for all the tongue-tied novice wordmongers caught in a pinch of a clinch, here are a few suggestive phrases you might wish to consider. (Note: this is not an exhaustive list. After all, what's a politically-correct person of pluck and pulchritude supposed to do when presented with a flummoxing fill-in-the-blanks fantasy such as this one?)

  • The breathtakingly beautiful bedswerver reached forward with bellitude and slowly began unfastening his baby-blue ballop. Blutterbunged and beblubbered, he responded favorably to the deosculating gestures of the blossy bellibone.

  • Clicketing is something she tried to hide but the shy, retiring, climacterian was aflutter with goose-bumps just thinking about her rendezvous with “Billy-Winks”.

  • The laced-woman had one of those lick-for-leather lapse of memory moments. Thank goodness she regained her composure. At long last, her merry-go-sorry days were over.

  • When “lusti-hood” met “lust-dieted”, you knew that low-carbs were definitely not on their minds. But then neither was a bubbly, low-calorie, non-alcoholic beverage, come to think of it.

  • Her twee habits and tongue got the better of her. She pondered anxiously, would the naughty knight in shining armour, Sir Gal-A-Had forgive her? Would the ‘shagging carpet knight’ gird his loins, get off his blessed bended knee and text message her, "Care to check out my redeeming qualities and join me for a nightcap on the "Rug of Reverie?". Not one to turn down a good thing, she replied in the affirmative. And the rest they say is history.

  • A "love-tooth in the head" is not something the doctor had ever treated before. But then neither was "liplabour". Being a man of good thoughts and deeds, there was always a first time for everything. Why not sally forth and offer some sucky-tooth advice to the “liplorn” he mused (while matter-of-factly muttering an ejaculation of surprise under his breath).

And for those pragmatic souls brought up on “think-and-do” books in childhood, the following choice may be more appealing -- writing an interactive bedtime book for grown-ups.

1. Ask fantasy-challenged Dick-and-Jane readers to cut and paste photos from old magazines to make a creative craft collage of the “magic moment”.

2. Ask “power-lunch" personalities to shift-gears, join the slow-food movement, and learn the benefits of “milquetoast” meditation techniques before reading the “magic moment” passage.

3. Ask hard-to-please readers to indulge their pleasures by jumping into their birthday suits, smoking forbidden cigars, turning on some vigorous vixen mood music, and forgetting about the heroine’s wretched “magic moment”.

Remember, if all else fails, just pack every passion-filled scene with all those things your mother told you never to do. Then let your editor have fun with your pucker-power post-it note options -- it'll probably make her day!


This is a piffling parody piece. So if you want the real thing, and are just dying to become a chick-lit" writer, please check out the Harlequin website resources at http://

And now a word about Bad Sex writing from The Guardian:,6109,1373416,00.html

Wednesday, September 15, 2004


What would you do with a “gift horse” from a dear old family friend? -- Signed -- Not a Horse Lover.

Dear Not a Horse Lover,

How delightful to hear from someone who has encountered what might be politely called, a “mysterious object of affection”.

To solve the dilemma of what to do with your unusual gift, you might first want to determine if it is a “high horse”, a “hobby horse” or a “dead horse”. After all, flogging a dead horse probably won’t win you any brownie points but then again, it sure beats having to mount a bucking bronco. So, assuming the blooming beast is still in your possession …here’s what you need to do.

1. Bless it. (Think nice thoughts or you’ll get a visit from the Goddess of Glitch. And, you’re not looking for more hoofed thingamabobs, are you?)

2. Do not inspect it too closely unless “rude awakenings” are part of your life story. (Just because it was born in a barn doesn’t make it a horse of course.)

3. Offer Feng-Shui enthusiasts the opportunity to adopt your “gift horse” (as a “good luck charm” for their Karma Farm).

4. Volunteer it as a charity golf tournament “booby prize”. (This is a safe bet because there's bound to be at least one feisty player who adores using colorful language in the sandtrap and won't be in the running for the "jolly good sportsmanship award" anytime soon.)

5. Call up your local “Apathy Wagon” service, (they’re always looking for horses of a different color, especially if they’re newcomers to the paddock).

6. Hang a sign in your window, “Can a loony really buy you happiness?” (You’ll get lots of inquiries and who knows one of them may actually strike up a bond of kinship with the “perfectly normal beast”.)

7. Don’t question why “it” landed on your doorstep; (just figure out how palm it off on some lost New Age soul who’s keen on knowing if pigs really can fly).

8. While hissy fits are in vogue, don’t throw one unless you’re a woosie. (Just throw a whine and cheese party and make sure the winner gets to take “it” home!)

9. Ask your work mates if they want an asset to the “Big Dream Team” – (if nothing else, “it” could become an amusing mascot and thankfully out of your hands).

10. If all else fails … just remember the movie, “They Shoot Horses Don’t They?” (This might be a tangent worth exploring).

By the way, all you ever wanted to know about “gift horses”, you’ll probably find by visiting more than 2,360 websites devoted to the topic.

And, in case you’re looking for where to donate your “gift horse”, you might want to try the Victoria Police (Mounted Branch) in Australia at

On the other hand, if you’re wondering whether some gift-horses are worth riding, why not visit a well-known on-line computer magazine,

Last but not least, if it’s unique or unusual things for the gift-horse lover in your life, you may find it at a great little Canuck retail site,

Yours sincerely,

The Gift Goddess*
(Gifts and ideas that make you giggle, gasp, or glow with delight)


*(A delightful deity and mirthful member of The Quipping Queen's royal entourage).

Monday, September 13, 2004


Or, what was the world like before brand-names & blah-blah-blah?

Inundated with more than 10,000 messages a day, it’s not surprising that many folks prefer to go “bonkers” than see another blessed advertisement for things guaranteed to cure all manner of ills and bring us joy life ever after.

You know the ones I mean ...restore your venal vigor in just one hour (for just $49.95 plus tax), ...renovate your tinkle pantry in 7 days (based on an easy, affordable, installment payment plan), ... make you rich in less than 21 days (all credit cards accepted for this "best-selling" tips book), ...or enhance your private parts for life (using a miracle formula available at a 50% discount, if purchased within the next five minutes on the Shopping Channel).

It would be nice to think that we’re okay just the way we are. The truth is that the world goes better when we buy stuff, and I mean oodles of it, even if we don’t really need it.

With so many “brand-name” and “brand-less” products competing for shelf space and “mind share” -- it’s no wonder we’re pooped and need the occasional pick-me-up or put-me-to-sleep pill! After all, being bombarded by those ‘buy now…before it’s too late’ ads, text messages, and infomercials on TV, radio, cell phones, magazines and now embedded in emails isn't much fun. The astonishing thing is how people cope with this dilemma by calling on some familiar escape goats such as daydreaming, dawdling or simply dumping on others.

As little as a century or two ago, no one obsessed about buying “brand-name” products "to impress a boss", "bewitch a suitor" or "to keep up with the wretched Jones's".

For those who didn't like being told what to do, there were plenty of things to engage their talents besides wading through the holy scriptures, the sports page, or sharing the latest interactive electronic exploits of "Dick and Jane or Puff and Spot in the Dungeon" with friends.

In fact, far from having their head in the clouds, folks spent a good deal of time with their feet firmly planted on the ground. For example, home gardens were practical if not pretty places designed to provide nourishment for families while medicine chests were filled with home-remedies although perhaps a tad bare by today’s standards.

And if the “humors” got you down, there were always a few tried-and-true remedies you could count on to get you back on your feet (besides bleeding or purging).

  • Cayenne pepper sprinkled on one’s socks could cure “cold feet”.
  • Thorough-wort, red raspberries and sage were said to do wonders to relieve the symptoms of flu or a cold.
  • Caraway and fennel seeds in food were used to cure a bilious body of “windy colic”.
  • Pillows stuffed with hop seeds provided an alternative to counting sheep and, more often than not, afforded owners the gift of pleasant dreams.
  • Catnip apparently kept the wee ones calm and quiet if not the cats as well; (and in my day, kids and cats were to be seen and definitely not heard).

Instead of looking to “Father Knows Best”, the “Wizard of Oz” or “Superman” to save the day, those who came before us lived simpler lives and no doubt understood the notion that perhaps “nature knows best”.

So, when your world starts to look like a hodgepodge, and you can’t find the silver lining behind your cloud…why not take a break from the 500-channel universe and the chatterbox of life. Count to ten, take a deep breath...and enjoy a walk in nature – it’s the one thing in life that isn’t created by spin doctors, has no brand-name, and doesn’t go blah, blah blah!


For more information about the world before brand-names and blah, blah, blah…as well as some handy home-remedies, check out "Good For What Ails You" at

Saturday, September 11, 2004


Or, Toorah For Those Tittilating Tag-Names!

Fascinated as I am with names, I happened upon an article in our thrice-weekly, local Victoria newspaper devoted to tempting the tastebuds of tipplers at the outdoor "Great Canadian Beer Festival".

It seems that our island castle (has more than a few educated swillers from nearby colleges and universities, not to mention a slew of seabees (from the naval base next door) who can't get enough of those special event suds.

In case you thought beer is just beer, think again. There’s the mass-produced malt variety (aka bottled grog) for those who need a bold “brand-name” beer to convince them they’re part of a happy herd of flatulating buffalo, frenzied sharks or frisky penguins. Then there’s the small-batch, cottage micro-brew for the young, discerning crop of brown-nosing, social-climbing iconoclasts who really don’t give a sweet tweet about the plebes. And last but not least, there are those who pride themselves in being able to show-off their penny-pinching, skinflint, tightwad habits courtesy of the local u-brew shops.

Not being a true-blue beer-belly, I must admit I haven’t the foggiest idea of what to look for in a beer other than the name. And being a rather elegant, eccentric and equable person of good breeding (and not surpisingly, easily amused), I find solace in all strong and single-minded spirits -- especially the tall, dark and handsome ones.

Anything boisterous and bubbly will attract my attention as will any marvelous moniker that’s a tad titillating, saucily spunky or possibly just a dandy draught.

So, I thought I would share with you a few of my favorite hop handles (on the off chance that you too might be as delighted as I was to see them). Besides "Moosehead" (for the merry munchkin in all of us) , there are oodles of other laugh-out-loud names to enjoy such as:

  • Back Hand of God (Crannog Ales)
  • Black Widow Dark Ale (Tin Whistle Brewing Co.)
  • Bogtrotter Brown Ale (Crannog Ales)
  • Bull Frog
  • Bureaucracy Bitter (Gulf Islands Brewing Co.)
  • Buzzard's Breath (Big Rock Beer)
  • Cold Cock Winter Porter (Big Rock Beer)
  • Fat Head I.P.A. (Fat Cat Brewery)
  • Hophead India Pale Ale (Tree Brewing Co.)
  • Jack Rabbit Low Carb Beer (Big Rock Beer)
  • Killer Bee Dark Honey Ale (Tin Whistle Brewing Co.)
  • Lemp
  • Moose Drool (Montana Big Sky Brewing Co.)
  • Mule
  • Old Stumplifter (Tree Brewing Co.)
  • Paddywhack IPA (Nelson Brewing Co.)
  • Pig's Eye
  • Posiedon's Imperial Stout (Fish Tale Ales)
  • Pompous Pompadour Porter (Fat Cat Brewery)
  • Rattlesanke ESB Ale (Tin Whistle Brewing Co.)
  • Red Devil Ale (R&B Brewing Co.)
  • Red Ass Ale
  • Scrumpy Cider (Montana Big Sky Brewing Co.)
  • Snuffy Smith
  • Warthog Cream Ale (Big Rock Beer)
  • Ya Man Jamaica Ale (Montana Big Sky Brewing Co.)
  • Yellow Belly

    For those of you who like something a touch more radical or ribald, why not try these on for size (courtesy of the "Strange Brew Random Beer Name Generator"):

    · Flying Squirrel-Pinto Stout
    · Frisky Ardvaark Gueuze
    · Dirty Deer Doppleback
    · Grunting Jellyfish Pale Ale
    · Moose-Monk Extra Special Bitter
    · Sloshed Wombat Stout
    · Sub-Atomic Wit Brown Ale
    · Succulent Groundhog Day Golden Altbier

    And as every “victualer” knows, you will certainly need a nifty name for your tacky tavern besides, “Stickey Wicket Pub”,Waddling Dog” or “Toad-in-the-Hole” (which are already taken). So if you’re leisure-challenged like I am, you might want to have a wee peek at the "Random Tavern Name Generator". You might not like the "Tippling Twitmeister Taproom" but perhaps one of the following gems might strike your fancy:

    · Berserk Knave Hall
    · Cheerful Hippogriff Pub
    · Fiery Grog Cellar
    · Giggling Gryphon Guesthouse
    · Toothless Taproom
    · Twin Heretic Tavern

    So, as they say in sci-fi movies, “May the Force Be With You”, as you drive home tonight with the help of a trusty taxi coupon or a designated driving dude/damsel.


    The sub-atomic pale-alers among us may want to visit the “Strange Brew” website for more than 27,703,620 possible new brew names to print on those ultra-cheap “u-brew self-adhesive labels”,

    And do drop by one of my favorite hop spots on the Net -- The Big Rock Beer folks in Calagary, Alberta at

    For those of you who want to check out the 59,980 possible pub names – please consult the “Random Tavern Name Generator”, at :

    Should any of you wish to pay an impromptu visit to the fair city of Victoria, BC (Canada), why not book ahead and go to the "Great Canadian Beer Festival" held each year in early September

Friday, September 10, 2004


Or, what’s in a name?

What do “Salvage”, “Dildo” and “Heart’s Desire” have in common?

Well these titillating monikers belong to several quaint, little communities in Newfoundland (one of Canada’s Atlantic provinces, for the uninitiated).

These charming little out-of-the-way gems (most folk have never heard of let alone laid eyes upon) also share another distinction; they have all been named “First Place Award Winners” in Harrowsmith Country Life’s “Top 10 Prettiest Towns in Canada”.

Let’s face it, Newfoundland, affectionately called, “The Rock”, is home to some rather fascinatingly odd, categorically unusual, if not utterly whimsical place names.

So, if you’re tired of tacky tourist traps, why not venture forth into the great unknown of uncertainty and bewilderment. You have nothing to lose and who knows, you might even enjoy a slight tickle of your funnybone.

I'm certain that you'll get a kick out of the warm hospitality exhibited by Newfoundlanders. No doubt, you'll also catch a glimpse of more than a few naughty nooks and capricious crannies on Canada's dearly beloved “pet rock”.

Just remember to keep your eyes peeled for the following picturesque piffling places.

· Bottle Cove
· Boxey Harbour
· Brig Bay
· Burnt Islands
· Chance Cove
· Conception Harbour
· Cow’s Head
· Cupids
· Dead Man’s Bay
· Duntura
· Dunville
· Farewell
· Flat Bay
· Fogo
· Fortune Harbour
· Gallows Cove
· Gambo
· Gander
· Goobies
· Goose Arm
· Happy Adventure
· Happyvalley-Goose Bay
· Hatchet Cove
· Heart’s Content
· Heart’s Delight
· Hooping Harbour
· Indian Tickle
· Joe Batt’s Arm
· Jumpers Brook
· Leading Tickles
· Little Burnt Bay
· Lushes Bight
· Malignant Cove
· Monchy
· Mosquito
· Musquodoboit Harbour
· Nipper’s Harbour
· Paradise
· Petty Harbour
· Pinware
· Plum Point
· Pushthrough
· Quirpon
· Quidi Vidi
· Shag Harbour
· Seldom
· Separation Point
· Snook’s Arm
· Snug Harbour
· Sop’s Arm
· Tickle Beach
· Tilting
· Tizzard’s Harbour
· Virgin Arm

and last but not least... Witless Bay!


For those of you who desire more information about the winsome wonders of Newfoundland, do visit the E-berg website at

In case there are a few skeptics among our readers, just a map of Newfoundland to ensure the existence of these titillating towns and their location, see

And for those that can't get enough weird and wonderful placenames, try this:

Saturday, September 04, 2004


By Theolonius McTavish -- a somewhat spaced-out time-traveller (of minor relevance and importance in the great scheme of things), and super-sized sophist to The Quipping Queen.

Seeking a spot of serenity somewhere in the universe, I recently booked a deep-discount dodgy berth on the ‘White Elephant Express Space Shuttle’, to a little known place in a galaxy far, far away.

“WhyNot” (otherwise known as HD 36405.b) is not your average “oddball” exo-solar planet made of rock that wobbles on its end and zips around a nearby star in less than 2.46 days.

Most linear thinkers have a great deal of difficulty even comprehending why on earth anyone in their “right mind” would be interested in visiting a planet called “WhyNot”. Not being a linear thinker with an investment in the “right” answer, I didn’t give a hoot. After all, what does one (who walks on water and listens to miffed mortals all day long) do for a frigging night off, now I ask you?

If truth be told, (after reading random excerpts from “The Itty Bitty Bunkum Book About Life, the Universe and Practically Everything Under the Sun Not To Mention Stuff Going On In Remote Galaxies), I was simply delirious. According to its noted author, Dr. Jarn Leffer, “WhyNot is a ’must-see’ for those with little time on their hands and a passionate interest in innocuous things.”

As planets go, “WhyNot” is a pretty ho-hum celestial pit-stop with perhaps one exception… the welcome notice that reads, “Cosmic Cowboys - Welcome to the furthest unexplored outreaches of the Galaxy … Home to the Fuck-Up Fairy and Oodles of Green Gadflies!”

“WhyNot” is populated by colonies of giggling, green grasshoppers . What else would you expect to inhabit a far-flung, fantasy-challenged hellhole like this? But, what made “WhyNot” strictly speaking a strange place was the fact that the inhabitants munch on green, biodegradable garbage bags just for fun. Lacking masticating capabilities, the gadflies process their food by vigorously jumping up and down on it. No wonder they have no need for fast-food franchises, strip malls or landfills!

Anyway, I picked up this picturesque postcard of the blessed ballyhooing buglugs. They look perfectly happy but don’t be deceived. In reality, they’re just a gang of glad-handing grasshoppers. They don’t play golf, eat burgers, or drink beer -- and none can frost a rock! Come to think of it, apart from the company of bugs and the elusive flop fairy, this pathetic planet has precious little going for it!!

To put it bluntly, life on “WhyNot” is just shy of a tittynope*. The jolly green grasshoppers and the carefully manicured green fairways with sand traps as far as the eye can see certainly make for an utterly harmless world. Regrettably, without a pair of golf clubs, a dimpled white ball, and the notion that 19th hole even exists on this planet -- ”WhyNot” is about as fun as bag of toads!

Life Lesson 42: Remember to talk to your travel agent before ever embarking on a flight of fancy to a planet called “WhyNot” in a galaxy named “Have-a-Nice-Day”!!


*"Tittynope" for you whiffling word-peckers means "a small quantity of anything left over".

And now for a hint about what all those green, glad-handing grasshoppers from "WhyNot" look like, take a wee peek (with the help of my favorite illustrator, Dale Hitchocox) at

And another Blogger Directory for you to check out...

Friday, September 03, 2004


By Theolonius McTavish (footman/paramour of "The Quipping Queen" and an eccentric, chronologically-gifted sea-dog with a strange sense of what constitutes “fun”).

For an appreciation of the "Lost City of Atlantis" and the breathtakingly boring yet boisterous, belching blowhards who frequent the "Come-By-Chance" wet bar -- see the reverse side of this ludicrous literary post-card.

Actually, it took a tad longer than I anticipated to get here because HMCS Vacuous-Vixen (based in CFB Esquimalt) had a few gaping holes in it. Acquired recently from the British Navy, the aging damsel needed a “minor” miracle-makeover. Like all pipe dreams however, this one had a few glitches…(not unlike my ripsnorting romp in a pup tent near Tofino, and a visit from the stork nine months later).

Why Atlantis? Well, there was a submarine seat-sale on for “20,000 Leagues Under The Sea” – that’s why! Being a bit of an X-treme explorer, (blame it on my dumpster-diving days), I’ve always been open to unusual experiences. Besides, a seven-day underwater cruise (for $799 plus GST) to help out the cash-strapped Canadian Navy seemed like a good idea at the time.

Did you know a lot of mariners hail from the Prairies? I’m told they’re looking for any excuse to bid farewell to Moose Jaw, Plum Coulee or Bodo, not to mention the frigging beavers, the damn deer, and last but not least, the stinking bison. (This detour has nothing whatever to do with Atlantis -- so just humor me and try getting lost in someone else’s reverie for a change!)

Anyway, thank goodness the venerable vessel was repaired and squeaked by its sea trials …otherwise I wouldn’t have been able to embark on my undersea voyage to Atlantis.

The main port of call was a large red cross on a nautical map marked “Witless Harbour”. Stepping off the cramped and odorous quarters of our pink, sausage-shaped ship, I was greeted by none other than “Neptune” and his companion, “Tony the Tuna”.

JOURNAL ENTRY1: Lost souls will find this place utterly charming at first glance.

Apart from far too many silver-tongued politicians, Atlantis has few attractions worth boasting about -- unless you include an off-beat sea-monster petting zoo named “Nippers Delight”.

The only saving grace in the “lost city” is “Come-By-Chance” -- a popular wet bar and grill featuring google-eyed appetizers. Tucked away in a cubby hole called “Little Seldom Hotel”, this footlocker-sized eating establishment caters to a discerning crowd of flaky codswallopers and an odd assortment of tender groupers, (although where I fit in this culinary caper is anyone’s guess).

JOURNAL ENTRY 2: Avoid eating [hapu upu u] – it’s soft, slithery and squishy on the palate – certainly not worth five gold stars as “The Lost Catch of the Day.”

JOURNAL ENTRY 3: Scratch Atlantis from the “Top 10 Must-See Places Before One Croaks” list!


Those curious to catch a glimpse of the "Lost City of Atlantis" and the breathtakingly boring yet boisterous, belching blowhards who frequent the "Come-By-Chance" wet bar ...check out the colourful characters drawn by illustrator extraordinaire Dale Hitchcock at: