Sunday, February 27, 2005


Or, there's more to being dumb than you think!

By Theolonius McTavish an irreverent iconoclast with a penchant for pink elephants, Virgos with Cancer rising, and hoola hoops that glow in the dark

North America (and some might even include a country due north of the 49th parallel called Canada) has a fascination with and a fondness for simple-minded souls.

A quick check of my favorite Internet search engine, “Google”, reveals no less than 1,990,000 pages devoted to “dummies”. In second place, we have a mere 1,670,000 web pages highlighting the antics of “idiots”. And third place goes to the ship of “fools”, containing more than 1,610,000 pages of bewildering bumpf designed to bemuse if not boggle the brains of “bozos” and their close relatives, the bucolic “bumpkins”.

To meet the ever-increasing demands of this “mental giant” mega-market, we now have an entire easy-to-read book industry that publishes “how to” guides for “idiots” and “dummies”. “Fools” have yet to agree on who should represent their scatter-brained needs and lollygagging pursuits. And, since “Bozos” and “Bumpkins” have rather infinitesimal brains, their only aspiration in life is to eat, drink, sleep, and fight a lot.

To appreciate the importance of this fatuous fraternity, I have compiled a list of more than 400 English language words and phrases used to describe those who are said to be insignificant souls lacking common powers of understanding, judgment and prudence, or those who manage to spend their ludicrous lifetime trifling with trivial matters.

If you come across some new words, feel free to try them out on your friends, family members, or perhaps even a few foes. With a bit of practice, you can then share them with far flung folk who might enjoy adding a little levity to their deep-in-thought days as “dweebs”, “dingbats”, or “dunderheads”.

For those with sixty-second attention spans, just throw a dart to select your weird word for the day!

A: Aardvark, Addlebrain, Addle-Cove, Afterling, Airball, Airhead, “All Gong and No Dinner”, Also-Ran, Arm Candy, Arse, Ass

B: Babbler, “Bag of Nails”, “Bag of Wind”, Balmy, Batbrain, Batty, Bazooka, Beanbrain, Bean-Head, Bearded-Weirdie, Bel-Shangle, Billy Barlow, Binlid, Birdbrain, Biscuit-Eater, Bizarro, Blatherskite, Blitherer, Blockhead, Block Ornament, Blob, Bloke, Blowhole, Blubberhead, Blunderbuss, Blunderhead, Blue Devil, Blutterbunged, Bogue, Bollocks, Boffo, Bonehead, Bonetop, Boob, Booberkin, Boofa, Boofer, Booby, Boor, Bore, Botcher, Bozo, Brainless Wonder, Brick, Brown Bagger, Bubble, Bubblehead, Buffle, Bufflehead, Buffoon, Buffy, Bullheaded, Bum, Bump On a Log, Bumpkin, Bungler, Bunny, Bush Bunny, Bush-Leaguer, Buttered Bun, Butterfingers, Butthead, Buttinski, Butt Munch, Buzzard

C: Cabbage-Head, Cad, Cheese Cake, Chooch, Chuff, Chump, Churl, Clam, Clatterbox, Clatterbrain, Clod, Clodhopper, Clodplate, Clodpole, Clone, Closet Case, Clot, Clown, Clueless, Cluck, Cluckhead, Clumperton, Clunker, Cockamamie, Codfish, Coot, Corkhead, Country Chub, Crackpot, Crank, Crazy Arse, Cream-Puff, Cretan, Crock, Cuckoo, Cully

D: Daffy, Dandyprat, Dansey-Headed, Deadbeat, Dead From The Ears Up, Deadhead, Dialtone, Dickbrain, Dickey-Dido, Dickhead, Dilberry, Dildock, Dim Bulb, Dimwit, Dingaling, Dingbat, Dingleberry, Dink, Dipshit, Dipstick, Ditz, Div, Divvy, Dizzy Flat, Dodo, Dodo Bird, Doddypoll, Do-Little, Dolt/ish, Donkey, Doobie, Doodle, Doofus, Doorknob, Door-Stopper, Dope, Dopey, Dork, Dorkhead, Dotard, Drip, Drone, Drooly, Drop-Case, Dropkick, Duck, Dud, Duffer, Dudley Do-Gooder, Dullard, Dull Pickle, Dull Swift, Dull-witted, Dumbbell, Dumbhead, Dum-Dum, Dumb-Ox, Dummkopf, Dummling, Dummy, Dunce, Dunderhead, Driveller, Dweeb, Dweezle

E: Eccentric, Egghead, Egg-Sucker, El Dorko, Empty-headed

F: Fadoodle, Fall Guy, Fair Game, Far Out, Fathead, Fizgig, Flake, Fleak, Featherbrained, Feather-Head, Flake, Flapdoodle, Flop, Flounderer, Fluke, Fly-Catcher, Flop, Fonkin, Fopdoodle, Four-oh-Four, Fruitcake, Fruit Loop, Fumbler

G: Gabes, Gadabout, Gadwall, Gaffer, Galoot, “Gates are Down, the Lights are Flashing, but the Train Isn’t Coming”, Gawkhead, Gawny, Gerbil, Giddy Goat, Giddyhead, Glom, Goob, Goober, Goof, Goofball, Goof-Off, Goof-Up, Gooby, Googie, Goombah, Goomer, Goonie, Goonie Bird, Goon Head, Goopy, Gooseberry, Goose Cap, Gourd, Groutnoll, Grunt, Guddha, Gudgeon, Guffin, Guffoon, Guffy, Gull, Gumby, Gummy, Gump

H: Half-Ass, Half-Bake, Half-Wit, Harebrained, Hasher, Hayseed, Hick, Hobnail, Hobby Horse, Ho-Daddy, Hoddy-Doddy, Hoddypeak, Hood Ornament, Horrid Horn, Horse’s Arse, Hubble-Bubble Fellow, Humbler, Humpty-Dumpty, Hunk, Hussy

I: Idiot, Ignoramus, Imbecile, Innocent

J: Jabberknowl, Jack-a-Lent, Jackanapes, Jackass, Jarhead, Jerk, Jerkhead, Jester, Jibbernoll, Jingle Brains, Jobbard, Jobbernowl, Jock, Joker, Jolthead, Joltherhead, Juice Head, Jumping Jack

K: Kafkaesque, Klutz, Knobber, Knucklehead, Kook

L: Lame, Lamebrain, Laughingstock, Lights On But Nobody’s Home, Lightweight, Liripoop, Liricomtwang, Lob Cock, Log, Looby, Loon, Looney/ie/y, Looney/ie Tune, Lunie/y, Loose Screw, Loser, Low-Brow, Lubber, Lug Nut, Lummox, Lumpkin, Lunchbucket, Lunk, Lunkhead

M: Mad Hatter, Marplot, Martian, Meatball, Meathead, Melon, Melonhead, Mental Giant, Mental Midget, Mess, Mismanager, Missing Link, Mobard, Mooncalf, Moonshiner, Moony, Mopstick, Moron, Mouth-Breather, Mudcat, Mudding-Face, Muddler, Muddle-headed, Muff, Muffer, Muffin, Mundivagant, Muppet, Murphy, Musher, Mushroom, Mutt, Mutton-Head,

N: Ned Fool, Neddy, Nerd, Nerk, Newt, Nick-Ninny, Niffy-Naffy Fellow, Nigit, Nigmenog, Nimrod, Nincompoop, Ninny, Ninnyhammer, Nit, Nitwit, Nob, Nocky Boy, Nod Cock, Noddipol, Noddy, Noddy Pate, Non Compos Mentis, Noodle, Noodlebrain, Noodlehead, Noodnick/Nudnick, Not-All-There, Not-With-It, Nugget, Numbnuts, Numbskull, Numbwit, Nutbar, Nut Case, Nuts, Nutso, Nutty

O: Oaf, Oddball, Odd Fish, “Off One’s Trolley or Rocker”, Oolfoo, Onionhead, Out-To-Lunch

P: Paper Skull, Pig Widgin, Pillock, Pinhead, Pintail, Pipsqueak, Pixilated, Plodder, Plump-Pate, Poggle, Pointy-Head, Poop, Poop Noddy, Poor Fish, Potato-Head, Powder-Puff, Prawn-Head, Prat, Prick, Pronk, Puggly, “Pull a Boner”, Pumpkin Head, Push-Over

Q: Queer Bird, Queer Fish, Quince

R: Rabbit, Rattlehead, Rockhead, Rube, Rustic

S: Sap, Sap-Pate, Sawney, Scatterbrained, Schlemiel, Schlepper, Schmuck, Schnook, Screwball, Screw Up, Screwy, Shallow Pate, Short Stop, Shot Clog, Silly Willy, Simp, Simpkin, Simple Simon, Simpleminded, Simpleton, Slow-on-the-Uptake, Smerf, Sockhead, Sophead, Spoiler, Square Brain, Stooge, Stoop, Stupe, Stupid as an Ox, Sucker

T: Teabag, Thickhead, Thickskulled, Thick-witted, Tirliry-Puffkin, Toady, Tom Doodle, Tomfool, Tom-Farthing, Torpid, Turkey, Twerp, Twillip, Twit, Twizzle Stick, Two Left Feet

U: Unconnected, Under-Achiever

V: Vortex of Vacuousness, Vapid Vixen, Vegetater, Vestigial Remnant, Vulgarian

W: Wacky, Wall-Hugger, Wally, Was-Bird, Wash-Out, Weener, Weenie, Weeny, Weeney, Whack-a-doo, Whack Job, Whaco, Whiffet, Whifflegig, Whifflling, Wipe-Out, Wiener, Wienie, Wierdie, Wierdo, Wierdy, Windbag, Wind Sock, Wind-Sucker, Wingnut, Wiseacre, Whoop-Dee-Doer, Witless, Witling, Womble, Woodcock, Wooly Crown

Y: Yahoo, Yap, Yard Bird, Yawner, Yawper, Yapper, Yea and Nay Man, Yisser, Yob, Yobbo, Yokel, Yoo-Hoo, Yo-Yo

Z: Zany, Zelda, Zero, Zilch, Zip, Zipalid, Zipperhead, Zipperlid, Zombie, Zuggers, Zwodder

* * *

Thursday, February 24, 2005


Or, eccentric events and odd occasions to celebrate in March 2005

**Compiled by Lady Beatrice Blitterlees and edited by Lord Earl Craboon

Let’s see…it’s March. According to the Calendar of Quips, it’s the third month of twelve, (which means we’re only one quarter of our way through the “Year of the Rooster”).

If you’re not the blessed big bird ruling the roost this year, then you'd better be really good at counting your chicks before they hatch.

On second thought, it's probably not a wise idea to rely on anyone laying the proverbial golden egg on your doorstep anytime soon. However, should your quirky curiosity about what the future holds in store for you be too much to handle, you might want to explore the arcane art of "alectromantia", (otherwise known as rooster divination).

And whatever you do, don’t resort to any whining, snivelling, or whimpering tactics. There are no “wet-blanket appreciation days” this month!

So, fling your frowns on a fire, toss your troubles away, and while you're at it, why not try kicking up those platform heels or doing a little soft shoe routine for a change!

Now that you've got your glad rags on, join in the festivities of MARCH MADNESS & MERRIMENT!!

NOTE: Those with an allergic reaction to good times should definitely stay home and play mind games with their pets, or watch TV shows featuring “lifestyles of old coots and curmudgeons”, home renovation tips for couch potatoes, or how to impress guests with your favorite KD comfort food.


1. MAD HATTER APPRECIATION DAY (If you’re late for a very important date who really cares? Put on your old TV rabbit ears, trap-door sleepers, and of wear a terrific smile!)

2. PISCES AWARENESS DAY (If you see a floundering fish or one swimming in two directions, you’ve hooked a Pisces; throw it back in the drink and try to jig a puffer!)

3. MOPS 'N' MUSTACHCHIOS DAY (Time to wax poetic with your mop or create a handle-bar mustache to impress a secret admirer or fend off the Hobgoblin from Heck)

4. EVERYONE’S ENTITLED TO MY OPINION DAY (Be a bit lippy or ludicrous, and sally or sashay forth to add your two cents worth about the level of customer service at your local Passion Pit-Stop or who has the latest weather report from “Cloud 54”)

5. FLUFF APPRECIATION DAY (In honor of all those who excel in the art of bureaucratic bafflegab, delightful double-speak, and twisted-tongued titillations)

6. BAGPIPE MUSIC APPRECIATION DAY (A fine way to appreciate the mellifluous melodies of gifted wind bags and ancient bladders ...knowing full well why someone invented a convenient dampening device commonly known as “ear-plugs”)

7. NEVER ON A MONDAY (It’s time to loosen your collar, let your hair down, and break another house or workplace rule just for fun!)

8. SHOPPING QUEEN FOR A DAY (It’s fabulous feline appreciation day ...time to use your credit card to buy all those sparkly little gems for sale on the TV Shopping Channel)

9. QUAGMIRE APPRECIATION DAY (Time to honor all the “stick-in-the-muds” you know in the great swamp, blessed bog or quick-sand-box of life ...don’t forget to say Hello and wave as you walk, jog or race by with a big beautiful smile on your face!)

1o. PODUNK APPRECIATION DAY (A skill-testing occasion to see how many small, remote, isolated towns you can name without any help from a friend, family member or a former teacher)

11. FORTUNE COOKIE APPRECIATION DAY (It’s time to pay tribute to those tasteless wisecracking tidbits you crack open after a meal of tofu and stir-fried thingamabobs)

12. LOVE HANDLE & WATTLE APPRECIATION DAY (Never too late to flaunt your flab is it? Just make sure that it’s legal don’t want a night in the slammer do you!)

13. SLINKY TOY DAY (A wonderful way to bring back munchkin memories or amuse your bored, adult, inner nitwit when all hell is breaking lose at home or at work)

14. SILLY-SYSTEMS THINKING DAY (Time to write easy-to-understand instructions so any baby-boomer you know can program his/her brand-new DVD player or assemble a piece of ready-to-assemble furniture without losing one's hair or sanity)

15. IDES OF MARCH (Time to don your toga or toad outfit and spit tacks, peas or sunflower seeds at anyone you please ...if that doesn’t work, get on your cell phone and do your rendition of, “Friends, Romans, countrymen, lend me your ear…”)

16. COWABUNGA DAY (Okay, now that you've strapped on your leather chaps and sharp spurs, you can tell our favorite cow pie story!)

17. LITTLE LEPRECHAUN DAY (Time to put on your hunter green tights, color your hair lime green, and spread lots of blarney in honor of a dandy dude named “St. Patrick” or was it "Dermot the Love Spot"?)

18. FLYING SAUCER APPRECIATION DAY (The only day when everyone can be an expert about strange goings on in the universe, crop circles, or the basement next door)

19. DWEEB APPRECIATION DAY (in recognition of all the wonky wunderkinds you know who haven’t got a clue how to install computer software or paint by numbers)

20. RED DWARF & GREEN KNIGHT APPRECIATION DAY (In honor of the first day of spring, and odd things going on in the Forest among the weird keepers of the Holy Grail)

21. GIVE ME A BREAK DAY (A truly exceptional occasion to cash in on your “Get Out of Jail” free card, or a “Dog House Day Pass” from your modest outdoor accommodation of late)

22. CALL IN WELL DAY (Take advantage of your frightfully fabulous mental health these days and just goof-off for an afternoon at the beach, on the golf course, or sitting in your throne room reading your favorite comic books and munching on junk food)

23. OF COURSE I’M RIGHT DAY (Finally, it’s your turn to be King Canute or Queen Bee of the Castle, as long as you remember, there’s a price to pay for everything! Like, tomorrow does not have your name written all over it!!)

24. DINGBAT FELLOWSHIP DAY (A time to honor all the off-the-wall folk you know and love …just like that long-lost Davy Crockett hat, polka dot hat and pink shoe laces, or that plastic hoola hoop you’ve got hidden in the closet)

25. SOPPY SONG AWARD DAY (Time to honor maudlin melodies, long-winded lyrics, soppy songs that should never have been written)

26. ARIES AWARENESS DAY (In honor of all those Mars-ruled brash, bossy beasts or barn-burning types you know -- not to be confused with other the ‘ram-a-dam-a-ding-dong’ folk among your quaint circle of acquaintances)

27. WHITE RABBIT DAY (Okay if you see a floppy-eared, good-natured furry critter hopping down the bunny trail, it must be Easter. So drop your big stick, give it a carrot and whatever you do think good thoughts and make a big wish – it’s your lucky day!)

28. LONG NECK AND NOSE APPRECIATION DAY (This is a rather fine way to honor giraffes, geese, or other Pinocchio-like members of your menagerie afflicted with a curiosity gene disorder)

29. TACKY TROPHY DAY (What a terrific time to craft your own tacky trophy or titillating talking stick designed to honor anyone who tells the best jokes or funny anecdotes in town)

30. BEDSIDE & BIFFY BOOKWORM DAY (An excellent occasion to compare with family, friends and colleagues, just what bodacious boudoir or breathtaking biffy books they’re reading these days)

31. BOFFOLA RECOGNITION DAY (Time to use those gag lines that have been clogging up your email inbox – but only if they they’re guaranteed to produce a hearty laugh or make a big hit your cube farm or barnyard of life)


"Alectromantia" - a mystical ritual involving a rooster (whose odd habits make him capable of answering any questions you may have, the more ridiculous the better). Draw a circle, and write in succession around it the letters of the alphabet; and on each side of it lay a grain a corn. Then put the rooster in the centre of the circle, and watch the grains he eats and in what order. The letters will prognosticate the answer to your question. (Source, The Word Museum - The Most Remarkable English Words Ever Forgotten, by Jeffrey Kacirk, Simon & Schuster Inc., New York, 2000, p. 15).

Friday, February 18, 2005


Or, what did you say again?

By Theolonius McTavish, an odd sort of person who adores collecting information regarding strange jobs no one has ever heard about unless one’s an insider or something

The other day I opened my local newspaper to my favorite section, the classifieds.

All right I admit perhaps I did glance over the “personal ads”, (the usual ones like “fit and fun SWM wishing to meet attractive, passionate SWF 35-45 for relaxed times”). But, nothing really caught my eye, tickled my fancy, or made me want to run out and spend $1.99/minute on a blutterbunged buddy or beautiful blatherskite for that matter.

Where was I? Oh yes, well to make a long story short, I made a beeline for the “Help Wanted” section, (or as I prefer to call it, the unusual labor and gene pool).

Today’s listings include four gems: Debottlenecker, Feller Buncher (operator), Dangle Processor (operator) and Swamper. Now I don’t know about you, but these definitely invite further exploration.

Without a job description to figure out who might be qualified for these pithy posts, the best one can do is hop on the Internet. According to the Google search folks, there are 112,000 web pages on the subject of "Swamper", 9,430 web pages devoted to “Feller Buncher”, 7 web pages on “Dangle Processor”, and a scanty three for “Debottlenecker”.

To learn more about these jobs, it’s a wise idea to don a ‘dunce cap,’ (or a fool’s cap if the proverbial “sky is falling” on your side of the world). Then place your tongue in your cheek and cross your eyes. Terrific, now you look like a fop and folks won’t have high expectations of you today.

Even better, make a sandwich board with the words – “JOB WANTED – Feller Buncher, Dangle Processor, Debottlenecker & Swamper”. Then stand on a street corner. Besides being a great conversation piece, it’s an excellent way to get fantastic feedback from everyone about what it takes to be a world-class whatever, whatnot or so-and-so.

“Feller Buncher” (is that the one who recruits a bunch of college footballers who want to squish themselves into a telephone booth and see if they can get into the “Guinness Book of World Records”?)

“Dangle Processor” (is that the Professor of Perilous Prose & Punctuation Pitfalls who moonlights as a correspondence commissionaire warning us of imminent threat from dangling modifiers not to mention the dangers of dead-end sentences?)

“Debottlenecker” (is that the weed-whacker who removes kinks in garden hoses, the whoop-de-doer that makes tomato catsup run smoothly, or the whizbang whee-er who flattens all mountains, molehills and whoopee cushions with a single, well-timed whop?)

"Swamper" (is that the poor sod in the bog who hasn't got a hope in heck of extricating himself/herself without assistance from the Guru of Glitch?)

Just remember, the next time you’re looking at the “Help Wanted” section, cross your fingers and toes that you don’t come across a job you’ve never heard of, but feel eminently qualified to submit an application anyway.

Toss your second thoughts away! Go ahead and boogie!! Apply for that job as "Chief Nose-Counter", "Executive De-Clutterbugger", or "Heffalump Hunter Extraordinaire". After all, you only live once (unless you really want to come back as a toad, an eel, or a snake for pity's sake)!

Life Lesson #47: Happiness comes in little packages marked “Do Not Open Under Any Circumstances”, (unless of course you’re a curious quack like me who doesn't trust angels).


For more information on "Odd Jobs of the Rich & Famous", please consult

Or, for more portraits of unusual occupations, why not pick up this tiny tome of treasures entitled, "Odd Jobs" by Nancy Rica Schiff

Thursday, February 17, 2005


Or, "h"owdy -- "h"ow the "h"eck are you?

By Dr. Ovid Publius Hadweenzic, a sexegarian scholar and graduate of the University of Gleed (in the Village of Thribble) with a degree in Agathokakological Studies (The Ancient Art of Mingling Good and Evil) followed by painstaking exhaustive research on flypaper, flying saucers and flying starts.

"H" is the eighth letter in the English alphabet -- a bit like the "8th Wonder of the World", wouldn't you say?

All manner of things begin with "H", but here are some of my favorites.


According to Webster's Dictionary, Humpty Dumpty is "an egg-shaped nursery-rhyme character who fell from a wall and broke into bits". Unfortunately, all the King's horses and all the King's men couldn't put Humpty Dumpty together again...that is until they invented Crazy Glue.

Humpty Dumpty is certainly a sign of our times. Quite frankly, it's probably cheaper to toss Humpty Dumpty into the trashcan than spend time trying to repair him (unless the fix-up involves a cutting-edge, short-term solution to everything -- liquid band-aids).


Now there's a piece of puffery if ever there was one! What do you mean you've never heard of it?

Hugger-Mugger has been around for the past 500 years, (give or take 200 depending on whether it's been used as a noun, an adjective, or a verb).

Now don't tell me you've forgotten your English grammar already. Alright, here are a couple of quick hints or clues to jog your memory:

  • NOUN (anything that fits into a box called a person, place or thing)
  • ADJECTIVE (the thing that describes the blessed person, place or thing)
  • VERB (what you do to the bleeping person, place or thing).

Anyway, where was I...oh yes, hugger-mugger. Well this little gem means "a confused or disorderly nature", (as in "it's a bloody mess" or "it's a frightfully jumbled nightmare if you really want to know!" Hugger-Mugger also means "to keep secret", (as in mum's the word, dont' let the cat out of the bag, or keep it under your hat).

(NOTE: This Hugger-Mugger business could pose a problem - especially if the SPCA found out that you were stuffing trolls along with cats into your duffle bag. And, as fate would have it, very few people these days wear hats -- unless you count winter tuques and turbans as haberdashery. More importantly, what's a young lass supposed to do when they don't even make hats let alone hat pins any more? Don't even bother asking me what's a hat-pin? Trust me, you don't want to know ...although it might come in handy if balloon-pricking is your avocation.)

Scientists offer several reasons why we haven't heard of "hugger-muggers". If I recall, it has something to do with far too many Full Moons all happening at once, the fact that the Sun and Mercury are meeting unpredictable, wild and wackly Uranus in Pisces to see how earthlings cope with small appliance breakdowns, computer crashes and the sudden arrival of guests on one's doorstep, and a prevailing fear of dictionaries among celebrities, sports stars, and engineers.

A further explanation suggests that our modern society does little to extend a warm welcome to non-linear events nor to reward states of mind having anything in common with the following:

-- all hell breaking loose, much ado about nothing or something,
-- agitation, anarchy, abashment, astonishment, backlash,
-- bafflement, befuddlement, bewilderment, blurr, botch,
-- bottleneck, break, breakdown, bull in a china shop, bungle,
-- calamity, cessation, chaos, clog, clutter, commotion,
-- complexity, -- complication, confoundment, congestion,
-- consternation, convulsion, derangement, disarrangement,
-- discomfiture, discomposure, disharmony, dismay, disorder,
-- disarray, distraction, disturbance, emotional upset,
-- entanglement, farrago, fix, fog, fracas, going nowhere fast,
-- ferment, going round and round in little circles, Gordian knot,
-- haze, hodgepodge, hubbub, hump, hurly-burly, hysteria,
-- imbroglio, interference, intricacy, irregularity, jam, jumble,
-- jungle, knot, labyrinth, lump, mass, maze, melee, mess,
-- miscalculation, misconception, mismanagement, mistake,
-- mix-up, muss, mystification, nervousness, obstruction,
-- pandemonium, perplexity, perturbation, pretty mess,
-- pretty pickle, puzzle, quandary, riot, row, rumpus, screw-up,
-- shut-down, SNAFU, snag, snarl, stew, stir, stoppage,
-- stupefication, surprise, tangled web, to-do, trauma, trouble,
-- turmoil, uncertainty, or wilderness.

(NOTE: Now whatever you do, watch out for anyone up a creek without a paddle. It could be a reality-TV "survivor" show or "idol" talent night. And they're only interested to know if you can applaud their every move! (Speaking of adventure, why not try using your all-in-one remote control device and watch a more positive, life-affirming TV program like "Touched by An Angel".)

If you can't find bliss with the help of an angel or a guru, the next best thing is little blue pills. In fact, there's a rather large and profitable industry devoted to banishing the blessed "hugger-muggers" from your brain (for a hefty fee of course). And frankly, who wouldn't want to pop a few placid pills or love potions just to escape from the long list of wicked words mentioned above.

Who knows, maybe those little pills will help you find the off-ramp from "Yellow-Brick Road" or at the very least, your weary way back to Kansas ...along with Dorothy in a pair of sparkly red shoes and her wretched yapping dog named "Toto", not to mention a scruffy scarecrow, a taciturn tin-man and a lily-livered lion if you please.

So, all in all "hugger muggers" are to put it bluntly, something you should avoid at all costs, if you value your pretty pinhead or your loopy life in La-La-Land.


This is a popular interjection in the English language. Actually it's more like a throaty, nasal word, (akin to a grunting sound).This three-lettered word appeared on the scene in 1732 -- and don't ask me why. Something really mind-boggling must have happened to give birth to it.

Huh is used typically to express surpise, disbelief, or disgust when casually asked by a sees-all-knows-all-sort-of-person, "I wonder if you can you tell me the price of tea in China today?"

Needless to say, Humpty Dumpty, Hugger-Mugger, and Huh have a good deal in common -- like wunderkins gone wonky, strange things that go bump in the night, or just plain weird stuff.

So, without further adieu, I bid a fond farewell to all you Humpty Dumpties, Hugger-Muggers, and Huh-ers! --

"May the Funny Force Be With You -- Sometimes or Always, As the Case May Be!"

Monday, February 14, 2005


Hmmm…is love really in the air ...or am I just running on fumes from my old jalopy?

By Theolonius McTavish, a patently absurd roving reporter with oodles of time on his hands to engage in spurious shenanigans likes this one

Relationship experts abound these days (sort of like mushrooms after a heavy rainfall). Is love really in the air ...or am I just running on fumes from my old jaolopy?

Move over Oprah and Dr. Phil!

At long last their luscious bit of lip has spread northward to the "Land of Cold" (also home to a rather fine book entitled, “Sex in the Snow”, -- or all the facts you ever wanted to know about how Canucks frump in the hollyfuds in below zero temperatures).

Okay, so you’re not interested in fanciful “Frosty the Snowman” stories, icky “Ice Cream Queen” tales or “Santa Claus” (and his affair with an Abominable Person of Snow).

Since Cupid is on the loose, family and relationship therapists have decided it’s high time to cash in on the canoodling craze. They’re now offering free, 50-minute marriage check-ups from February 14-18 (during Valentine’s Week) in Victoria, British Columbia (which is incidentally also the capital city of the "Land of Flakes, Nuts, and Fruitcakes").

So, what might a customer expect from a therapeutic couples’ session? Perhaps, handy hints on how to maintain your one-size-fits-all vixen vehicle or slightly rusty pimp mobile? Or maybe how to avoid pratfalls and speed-bumps (or "sleeping policemen") during a romp through the Tunnel of Love and around the Garden of Eden raceway?

If marriage checkups are like vehicle inspections, then peeking under the hood and glancing at the maintenance records of any pre-owned vehicle is always a good idea. And taking a new vehicle out for a spin before purchasing it is wise plan of action. But, doing an “all points” check on one’s marriage relationship? That requires some heavy duty pondering and light-hearted reflection.

Can’t you just see those advertisements now.

  • Better late than never to examine your “wheels” …'cause you never know when you’ll need to roll right out of town fast.

  • Check those “fluid levels” … after all, springing a leak could put a damper on things, not to mention leave you with a big mess and a hefty clean-up bill attached.

  • And don't forget to inspect your “crank shaft”... on second thought, that could be a real downer -- try something easier like "spark plugs" ( see where your get-up-and-go got up and went silly willy).

So, if anyone called Cupid offers you a time-limited, “two-for-one” deal -- like a free-marriage check-up together with a complete tune-up, oil change and lube job –- I’d jump at the chance.

Remember, the squeaky wheel always gets the grease. So, make sure you stock up on lots of Love Potion #9. After all, love will still make the world go round (especially when they run out of oil)!

And if that doesn’t work, just pick up a copy of “Sex in the Snow” –- it’s great bedtime reading material. Just make sure you consume it with a plucky partner who also adores a plate full of sugar-free crumbly cookies, and a glass of cold, lactose-free 2% milk.

Sunday, February 06, 2005


Or, how to find a romantic rendez-vous to reconnoiter?

By Theolonius McTavish, currently a ripsnorting roving reporter (with an abiding interest in arcane topics like curious, odd, or downright postively playful placenames), and part-time errant carpet knight, (a left-over piece of Karma from a previous lifetime)

Valentine’s Day is rolling around again. What would February 14th be without all those wretched little flaming red, cinnamon-flavored, candy hearts and calorie-laden, chocolate-filled, candy kisses?

Well, if you’re not into any of these sumptuous forms of “sweet nothings”, maybe a Valentine vacation might do the trick. If so, you’ve got plenty of "hot" spots to choose from in North America.

For the benefit of mapless folk, North America includes the UNITED STATES OF AMERICA and that cold comfort country, (on the other side of the 49th parallel, just a tad due south of Santa's hangout at the North Pole lies an off-the-beaten track place) called, "Canada".

For the digitally-inclined, a quick peek at any road atlas or an on-line GPS geo-locator service (see below) will certainly whet your appetite ... for a romp in the hay with a sizzling “Voluptuous Vixen” or a secret rendez-vous with “Rudolph Valentino” far, far away from the madding crowds.

And, fear not. If you don't have a hunk at your side or a piece of arm candy, you can always hang a sign on your door, put one on the lawn, or perhaps on your car window that reads:

WANTED: SHINING KNIGHTS (financially secure, limber & passionate, with a heart of gold and no defecating horse). CALL 1-800-DAMSELS2GO.

WANTED: DAMSELS & DIVAS (no cellulite, straight white teeth, & emotional baggage that fits into a tiny purse or handbag -- no packsacks, backpacks or carry-on-luggage please). CALL 1-800-KNIGHTS2GO

Let’s see, my list of romantic reconnoitering retreats includes some real humdingers and doozies. They may look a tad over-the-top, but I’ll have you know these little gems actually exist.

So Don Juan, Casanova and Romeo not to mention the damsels-in-distress like Juliet and all the other dangling divas ...what are you'all waiting for? Just grab your gear and head out on the road of life to some pretty exotic locals to set your hearts all a flutter!

On second thought, perhaps you'd like to revise your last-minute libidinous travel plans including those decadent indulgences and that red heart-shaped ballon-filled event you have in mind. Especially, after you've had a peek at these pleasure palaces.

Hmmmm....let's see there's....

Bella Bella (British Columbia – Canada)
Bigger (Saskatchewan – Canada)
Bird-In-Hand (Pennsylvania)
Bliss Landing (British Columbia – Canada)
Blue Ball (Pennsylvania)
Bummerville (California)
Camelot (Texas); Camelot Beach (Ontario – Canada)
Climax (Colorado, Minnesota, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Saskatchewan - Canada)
Clo-oose (British Columbia – Canada)
Cockeysville (Maryland)
Comfort (Texas)
Conception (Missouri)
Conception Bay (Newfoundland & Labrador)
Cupids (Newfoundland & Laborador)
Dildo (Newfoundland & Labrador – Canada)
Dixville (Quebec – Canada)
Dropmore (Manitoba – Canada)
Eden (Texas)
Fannie (Arkansas)
Fanny Bay (British Columbia – Canada)
Fertile (Saskatchewan – Canada)
French Lick (Indiana)
Garden of Eden (Nova Scotia – Canada)
Glasscock (Texas)
Goochland (Virginia)
Groom (Texas)
Halfway (Texas)
Happy, Happy Union (Texas)
Heart’s Content, Heart’s Delight, Heart’s Desire (all in Newfoundland & Labrador – Canada)
Hitchland (Texas)
Holdfast (Saskatchewan – Canada)
Hoo Hoo (West Virginia)
Hoop & Holler (Texas)
Intercourse (Alabama, Pennsylvania)
Kinkora (Prince Edward Island – Canada)
Kissimmee (Florida)
Little Paradise (Newfoundland & Labrador – Canada)
Little Heart’s Ease (Newfoundland & Labrador – Canada)
Little Seldom (Newfoundland & Labrador – Canada)
Lolita (Texas)
Love (Saskatchewan - Canada)
Love Ladies (New Jersey)
Lovelock (Nevada, Utah)
Loving (Texas)
Matador (Texas)
Needmore (Texas)
Nippers Harbour (Newfoundland & Labrador – Canada)
Nuttsville (Virgina)
Ochiichagwebabigoining (Ontario – Canada if anybody can pronounce this one, let me know)
Ogle (Kentucky)
Paradise (Nova Scotia – Canada)
Peel (New Brunswick – Canada)
Plum Coulee (Manitoba – Canada)
Point Comfort (Texas)
Red Head Cove (Newfoundland & Labrador – Canada)
Ripples (New Brunswick – Canada)
Romeoville (Illinois)
Sackville (New Brunswick)
Sexsmith (Alberta – Canada)
Shag Harbour (Nova Scotia – Canada)
Smackover (Arkansas)
Smuts (Saskatchewan – Canada)
Snag (Yukon Territory – Canada)
Snooks Arm (Newfoundland & Labrador – Canada)
Snug Harbour (Ontario – Canada)
Spread Eagle (Wisconsin)
Sugar Tit (South Carolina)
Sweet Bay (Newfoundland & Labrador – Canada)
Sweet Lips (Tennessee)
Tickle Cove (Newfoundland & Labrador – Canada)
Tiger Lily (Alberta – Canada)
Toogood Arm (Newfoundland & Labrador – Canada)
Trophy Club (Texas)
Truth or Consequences (New Mexico)
Valentine (Nebraska, Texas)
Wink (Texas)
Wolfe City (Texas)
Yum Yum (Tennessee)

Now the real question is, how many folks really admit to living in these “hot” little communities, and how many just visit to regale their friends with titillating trivia at the next “show and tell” Valentine’s party?

May the Power of the Pucker Be With You and Your's On This Auspicious Occasion!


Now for those who actually want to verify the existence of these very merry places to visit do check out the following links:

Knight's Canadian Information Collection:

For American placenames (just enter your placename in the search function and hold your breath):

And for those looking for that memorable or unusual Valentine's gift for your special "sweetie pie", why not try a personalized novel -- after all everyone deserves to be a star in their own the spotlight don't they!!

Friday, February 04, 2005



On February 9th, 2005 people all over the place will be ringing in another Asian Lunar New Year – THE YEAR OF THE ROOSTER!

It’s time to dance with Dragons, bang on the drums, light those fancy firecrackers (left over from Halloween), crack open the fortune cookies, and let’s have a bash – ‘cause the "Rooster’s" back in town!

For those of you who haven’t got a clue what’s going on, the party animals are out in full force. This year, “Rooster” rules the roost! And, that means anyone born in 1921, 1933, 1945, 1957, 1969, 1981, 1993 and of course, the newborn "Roosters" of 2005.

Yo there Chinese astrology fans, if you recall, “Rooster” is the third from the end of the 12-year Chinese Zodiac cycle of crazy critters including first the Rat, then Ox, Tiger, Rabbit, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Sheep, Monkey, (Rooster -- sometimes called Bird or Cock) followed by, Dog and Boar.

Actually “Roosters” are easy to spot. They’re perky, plucky, punctual creatures who don’t need alarm clocks or wake-up calls from the front-desk hotel clerk. These conventional critters have also been known to cut a mean tango, twist, or two-step on the dance floor at weddings, retirements and wakes.

Besides preening their feathers and admiring themselves way too long in the mirror every day, "Roosters" (as are "chicks") rather flashy dressers. So, keep your eyes peeled for anyone wearing spiked heels, black fishnet stockings, sparkly mini skirt and matching halter-top with maximum cleavage. And, watch out for a buns-of-steel stud with a colorful rooster tattoo on his right bicep, wearing nothing but a shoe-string thong or skimpy loincloth. No, it's not a figment of your vivid imagination's just a "Chick" and a "Rooster" doing what comes naturally!!

For those interested in more far-flung fowl facts, take a wee peek below.

In the meantime, suffice to say that all those “lady” birds earn their keep by laying oodles of eggs for Farmer Brown. (Lord knows why these "lucky ladies" get a bad rap as “hen-peckers”; no doubt Farmer Brown had something to do with it). On the other hand, the clucking “cocks”, (who spend most of their time fluffing up their feathers or sidling up to the hens offering them the best bugs and worms in the barnyard), usually end up as “roasters” -- on the supermarket shelf or in a KFC bucket!

"Roosters" tend be a tad eccentric, self-oriented, outspoken barnyard creatures, and why not. Who else is consumed with devising yet another bird-brained, “stroke of genius” scheme that no one else can pull off? When not doing dashing detective work, playing Doctor-Do-Little or Naughty Nurse Nellie, or rummaging around in people’s heads as a high-priced success coach (psychiatrist in another life), "Roosters" often get lost in a favorite pastime -- deep-musing -- which is second only to frolicking about in bucolic settings with pretty young chicks.

When it comes to choosing lovely libertines or life-time companions, "Roosters" are a rather discerning lot. Not any creature will do thank you. Just keep those fowl-challenged folk (like the rambuctious, twitchy-nosed "Rabbit") well away from those ripsnorting Red "Roosters" -- pleeease!!

The best mates for "Roosters" are "Snakes". Just avoid talking about Adam and Eve, or the snake in the Garden of Eden apple; it spoils the Rooster's appetite. And whatever you do, make sure you don't introduce any snake oil sales associates, snake charmers, and snakes in the grass ... or there will be hell to pay! If you don't know any venomless serpents, try "Oxes". Every "Rooster" needs to find a beautiful if not brave beast of burden willing to plod along affectionately, and not to complain too loudly about having to share a load of smelly organic material from the barnyard of life.

And as a final note, in order to keep your rooster happy, just follow these three things:

1. Let them be Cock of the Walk/Wok for one day. (Heck, that’s the least you can do; after all, they know how to keep time, do the runway thing, and cook stir fried meals for guests -- you don’t)!

2. Listen to their cock and bull stories. (They desperately need an appreciative audience and besides, you don’t really mind being entertained by a Big Bad Rooster do you!)

3. Warm the cockles of their hearts like there’s no tomorrow; you’ll have a fabulous feng-shui friend to play with for at least the next 365 days, or possibly a lifetime and beyond -- provided you blow sweet nothings softly in his/her ear. (And don’t forget, this advice also works well on February 14th, "Valentine’s Day", another occasion to try out all the really neat adult toys, chocolate candy kisses, and little red hearts.)

May the Feng-Shui Force Be With You This Year, and before I forget ...




Want to know what's in store for you in the YEAR OF THE ROOSTER, then check out the following sites:

Fill your boots with vital information:

Try on a distinctive T-shirt for the occasion!

For a commemorative stamp and coin set, take a peek at Canada Post:

And the folks at KIKKOMAN really know how to create a party atmosphere -- so here's your bundle of joy and lots of information to make you the best COCK OF THE WOK!

Tuesday, February 01, 2005


Or when caught in a pinch, try a little pucker power

As I was wandering about in my palace early this morning, (as I tend to do when counting sheep doesn't inspire sweet dreams), I came across several spring-loaded wood and metal contraptions with a hunk of cheese inside each one and a large, prominently-placed "Welcome" sign posted out in front.

Being an inquisitive sort, I ventured closer for a wee peek. Low and behold, much to my surprise, I found a mouse in a tuxedo (or perhaps it was an evening dress) playing a baby grand piano. And, on a nearby bear rug (beneath a stuffed boar's head on a wall from a Safari adventure far too long ago to remember) sat a tiny, inconspicuous mousetrap.

Finding a mousetrap in one’s castle is one thing, but finding a musical, if not a tad loquacious mouse in one's anteroom ...well that’s quite another.

So rather than bore you with tepid tales from the front line of a merry maid service or fluctuating price levels of tea in China, I’ve transcribed (word-for-word) the best snippets of conversation overheard whilst observing life in a miniature merry-go-round on the floor of my estate.

  • I may look dumb, but I’m not blind like those other three mice that fell for your cheesy compliments.

  • Who says building a better mousetrap isn’t fun? ('s just not my cup of tea that's all).

  • Take a hike; the “Mouseketeers” don’t live here any more!

  • More smelly foot cheese please.

  • If you don't mind me saying, you don't look like the Pied Piper to me!

  • I take it you’re not open for business (to a broken mousetrap).

  • Quite complaining -- if you want Liberace or Lawrence Welk, tune in to the re-runs -- now buzz off!

  • Thanks, but I think I’ll take a pass on the “Breakfast of Champions” today.

  • Widgets are way more useful than mousetraps; they get top billing in business plans!

  • The Roquefort was a little off yesterday don’t you think?

  • Listen, “Snap, Crackle and Pop” just isn’t my thing – so let’s not go there!

  • What the world needs now is love, sweet love (...not another frigging mousetrap)!

  • I'm not into "Whine & Cheese" parties, so what else is on your agenda tonight?

  • “Get a life!” (…the best piece of career advice from “The Mouse That Roared”).

  • I’m just glad Minnie and Mickey Mouse decided not to get hitched on your shift.

  • People who live in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones ...and they shouldn’t put out mousetraps either unless they want the Big Bad Wolf to come and devour them.

  • I may have loose lips, a double chin, and a sagging mid-riff but my pucker power’s working just fine thank you tell me again what you have to offer besides pain, death and not a hope in hell of meeting the "Jolly Greeen Giant," the "Man from Glad" or "Mr. Clean" before I check out?

  • "Do It My Way" may work well for you and Frank Sinatra, but I prefer Aretha Franklin's "RESPECT" -- so get used to it!

  • Would you be so kind as to take your wretched weapon of mass destruction elsewhere!

LIFE LESSON: 72 "Of Mice and Men" -- In a battle of wills and won'ts ...I'll go with mice; they make better friends.