The biggest idiot

  • A History of Social Norms, by Edna St. Vitus-Dance. Barns & Silo, $29.95 (Big Chief tablet-paper edition, with-visible-flecks-of-wood-and-lumberjack)
  • The Abandonment of Social Norms by Logan Bologna. Tinker, Evers & Chance, $6.43
  • Bite Me, Norm by Kirk Tiberius James. Julius Manboob & Mortified Sons, $1.29 print-on-demand (two-printers, no waiting.)

Three remarkable new books examine the growing public disregard for the social norms which have unofficially guided civilized societies to civilized civility ever since the end of the very uncivil Dark Ages (aka the Age of Rude Noises.)

The end came suddenly, according to St. Vitus-Dance. One night in the Dark Ages (it was always hard to tell if it was night or day or even the day before yesterday) a band of alt-hunters and alt-gatherers stumbled out of a diode mine and headed home. They’d spent the whole day hunting and gathering dark-emitting diodes (D.E.D) which they sold to people whose lives were just a little too bright for Dark Ages sensibilities.

Suddenly, one of them held up a D.E.D. and shouted “Hey, Ed, look. If you twist it like this, it lights up.”

Thus were light-emitting diodes (L.E.D.) discovered, instantly ending the Dark Ages and changing forever uncivilized practices such as eating with your elbows or knees on the table, or without napkins and, all too often, sneezing into the soup tureen and calling it chowder.

Philosophers, whose scribbles until then were transcribed in the dark — assisted only by mercenary Flemish fireflies — called it the Age of Enlightenment. Significantly, latter-day historians and phys-ed luminaries called it the Rush-Bagot treaty. But that is another story.

Author St. Vitus-Dance is a direct descendant of Todd, the Knucklehead, a licensed feeler and interpreter of head bumps in the Really Dark Ages. Todd was one of the world’s first phrenologists (an early term for one who studies bumps found on the heads of phriends).

Sadly, he was accused of feeling bumps nowhere near the head, leading the angry husband of one bumpee to shout “You want head bumps? Try these, whacko.” On a bright note, although Todd was burned at the stake, today he is considered the Father of Whack-a-Mole.

St. Vitus-Dance says the very first social norm adopted by any society dates to the very early days of rock concerts (pre-roll era). She writes that obnoxious fans, overcome by a desire to get down and get funky at the local hard rock quarry, blocked the view of those behind them on the pricey club-level stonework.

Since then, cries of “DOWN IN FRONT, THEN GET FUNKY,” became an effective social norm at your better quarries. Just as the cry “Watch the spear, man! I SAID WATCH THE DAMN SPEAR, YOU KNUCKLEHEAD! ” halted the practice of reenacting Brontosaurus hunts with sharpened sticks during crowded cave parties.

In his Abandonment of Norms, Bologna, a retired computer farmer, uses the example of people sitting behind you in the movie theater to demonstrate how norms have slowly eroded.

“Once upon a time, a family of 12, plus the kid from across the street, might file into the row behind you with hardly any fighting or seat kicking. The norms at the time allowed for polite whispering to the person in front of them (you), asking if they (you) could look down on the floor and see that little brown milk dud that Gimli, son of Gloin, dropped and it rolled under your seat and could you grab it and pass it back?”

Unless, of course, it stuck to your shoe, says Bologna. In which case the norm was for you (you) to  say something like ‘Jeezy Farouking McWeezy, it’s stuck on my shoe’ and to spend the rest of the movie whining (the norm called for ‘softly’) and trying to scuff it off.

Normfully, the person behind you would thoughtfully remind you that a putty knife could scrape off most of the mashed dud, then you (you) could throw it away, or simply eat it, as long as you hadn’t walked on it too much.

But no more, says Bologna.

“Nowdays the trend is for someone behind you to lean forward, press a bolo knife against your neck and spit out something like ‘My Milk Dud. Get it! And while you’re at it, get out.’ No please, no thank you, no oops, my bad.”

Indeed, Tiberius James, an award-winning hot dog glutton, describes in Bite me, Norm, how the phrase “Bite me, Norm” became the rallying cry of young, upwardly mobile, anarchists and wealth planners when asked by anyone named Norm to “Use a handkerchief, for God’s sake.”

Through the ages, social norms have bolstered manners. Consider how the “oh-my-goddings” and “how-dare-you-you-nasty-young-mans” of so many Aunt Hermiones and Sister Milo Marys have curtailed wanton boofing at Thanksgiving gatherings, and the practice of bending over, dropping trou and shouting to passersby “Vouchsafe my rosy red vouch.”

On the downside, sects of overly strict grammarians and word diddlers gained power. This gave rise to controversial rules such as the mandatory use of the term “male-thingie” when referring to a man’s male-thingie — instead of the more medically precise, though somehow vulgar “Bushrod Johnson.”

And who can forget the mandatory use of the hortatory subjunctive? Thus, Cicero’s well known “Let us eat Homer’s shorts,” or the more demure “Granted that The Donald is not the biggest idiot, at least he is an idiot.”

©Patrick A. McGuire and A Hint of Light 2013-2018, all rights reserved.

Posted in Absurd and/or zany, Mockery and derision, News You Can Use (Sort of) | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Out goes the bad air (Encore)

Dearest reader (but I digress),
If I may be frank, I would much rather you call me Ishmael. The point is, after being promulgated last week, the post “Out goes the bad air” suddenly disappeared from my official record. Pffffft, so to speak. It’s gone and I don’t know who got it and hated it, didn’t get it and hated it anyway, got it and read it and have no memory of it at all, got it and are now waiting to hear from their lawyer.

My sincerest apologies if you have already read “Out goes the bad air” (unless you liked it and don’t mind reading it again, in which case you are very special.)

I am now re-posting the piece, knowing this may inconvenience or confuse you, presuming you are still alive. If not, what a pleasure it has been to be one of my followers.

My regularly unscheduled post will resume, as usual, whenever it does. Let’s say “Soon.” Don’t get that one confused with this one. Just don’t.

Ishmael A. Hint,


Out goes the bad air

Just for the hell of it, I’ve decided to make fun of the laws of thermodynamics.

It’s my civic duty, after all, to follow our leaders’ example and mock anything I don’t understand. Which, in my case, means a lot of mocking.
Thermodynamics, as you may know, comes down to one very basic and cold reality: No thermo, no dynamics. No collusion. No Russians. No golden showers. No special counsel. No collusion.

But, good news: There are only four Laws of Thermodynamics – much easier to grasp, say, than the 10 commandments (with all those killjoy coveting rules) although not nearly as simple as the Two Laws of Breathing: 1. In goes the good air; 2. Out goes the bad air.

The fun begins when you realize the First law of Thermodynamics is not called the first law. It’s called the Zeroth Law. You see, the day after laws One and Two and Three were added to the Hollywood Walk of Fame, one of those silly physicistic dreamers came up with what should have been the Fourth law of Thermodynamics.

But this new law was so thermoistically dynamic, it created an immediate worldwide Hoohah – unheard of since the introduction of The Law of Perpetual Transmutation of Energy (LOPTOE, aka The Big Toe.)

Far too important to rank as Law Number Four, the phyzzies skipped it ahead to the front of the line.


My thoughts exactly. You can’t just cut ahead of someone or some law without causing outrage. Thus the shouts of “Hey, I was here first, you big zero” and “I’m never first, even when I’m first.”

So, the phyzzies, being very adept at adeption transmutation, renamed it the Zero law, because duh, zero comes before one. You would then have Laws Zero, 1,2 and 3.

But how many people would follow the rule of law if the law was called Zero? Uh, that would be Zero.

So they cleverly added a th, making it sound a lot like fourth or fifth or 166th and they called it Zeroth, as in squadooshth. That made the old first law of Thermo-D the second law, although it’s still called the first law. Cute. The second law, which is now the third law, is still known on the street as “The Deuce.” The old third law should be the fourth law — I hope you’re following this — but it isn’t because there is no fourth law even though there are four laws of thermodynamics. So much for the precision of science. And these are the people who want us to believe the earth is round?

Do we need so many laws? We already have the moral laws, the universal laws, the laws of motion, the laws of robotics, the laws of fashion, the laws of the jungle (which are the laws of fashion). There are Newton’s laws (My fave: Watch your head.) Nebuchadnezzer’s First law: Two z’s please. Siddhartha had only three laws, the most important being “Don’t forget the other two.”

So, let’s get down to it. What are the four laws of thermodynamics?

Zeroth Law: If objects A and B are in thermal equilibrium with object C, then A and B are also in thermal equilibrium with each other. Sha-boom! Which is also the definition of a three-dog night.

1st Law: The total amount of energy in the universe is constant; energy cannot be created or destroyed — but it can be sanded and shellacked and given as house-warming gifts.

2nd Law: This covers the irreversibility of natural processes and their tendency ( aka “the baked bean factor” ) to lead towards spatial homogeneity. Anyone subjected to the natural process in close quarters, understands the irreversibility thing. Once it’s out, it’s out. The best you can do is quickly slap your hand over your head (the universal sign for “Don’t look at me”). Spatial homogeneity has to do with moving as quickly as possible to a larger room or empty football field, without dropping your hand from your head.

3rd Law: The entropy of a perfect crystal approaches zero at 0k (Not to be confused with OK or Hunky Dory). Now, in order for motion to stop we have to hit the brakes (thermodynamically speaking) and reach absolute zero. Sometimes, though, you are approached by an absolute zero and told “Stop that right now or I’m telling.”

©Patrick A. McGuire and A Hint of Light 2013-2018, all rights reserved.

Posted in Mockery and derision | 3 Comments

How I got to Perth Amboy

Q. I’ve just started writing a really cool story, but I’ve hit a speed bump. In my excitement, I forgot to come up with an idea. Where do you get story ideas?
A. By “you” do you mean me? Or is this more a metaphysical question, where “you” is a substitute for “The universe,” or “The Man Upstairs,” or “The Big Bopper.”

Q. Um, never heard of The Big Bopper. What does he bop that ordinary boppers can’t?
A. You’ll never find out. It’s like standing on a cliff and shouting “Why?” down into the valley. Nobody ever answers, but you keep shouting “Why?” And sometimes “What? Did you say something? Can you repeat? Hello?”

Q. Sort of like going out on a cliff and asking “Why did the bear walk into a bar?”
A. Not quite, kid. More like “Why does a bear walk into a bar?”

Q. What’s the difference?
A. If the bear did walk into a bar, that’s what we call an empirical fact. You know it because you saw it. Maybe you went inside to be sure and nearly got trampled to death by all the people running out. In empirical-speak that’s called “The Empire Strikes back.”

Q. But why did he walk in there?
A. That’s the problem with the did question. Maybe he had to use the restroom. Maybe he heard they had Milk Duds in their vending machines. Maybe he was looking for Gluten-free beer. Maybe, maybe, maybe. Who knows? All you know for sure is that the bear is inside the bar. Everything else is rock and roll.

Q. But maybe…
A. Look, the real question is why does a bear walk into a bar. Very smart people have been trying to answer the does question ever since they invented bars. My own theory: no bear knows why he walks into a bar. Why not? Because they have bear brains. It’s like a nun once told me: “You’re not as smart as you look and you don’t look very smart.”

Q. What if the bear didn’t walk into the bar? What if he saw a donut shop just down the street and went there?
A. You mean hypothetically, of course?

Q. Maybe he has a thing for sprinkles.
A. I can see a bear walking into a bar and not being noticed right away because it’s dark and he, the bear, is dark. And since people are drinking it may take some time for them to convince themselves that yes, that’s a bear sitting on the next stool.

Q. So?
A. In a donut store you have bright lights. Very bright. You can count individual nose hairs in the ear of the guy next to you. Then, there’s the lines. It’s well known that bears don’t like lines. But here you have people lined up for coffee. People lined up for donuts…

Q. Or people lined up for sauerkraut because they cut class the day it was explained that sauerkraut and donuts live on different planets.
A. The point is, everyone sees that a bear just walked in. They’d be screaming and scrambling to get out of there.

Q. But why not screams of delight? Everyone crowding around the bear asking him “Can you talk? What’s it like being a bear? Have you escaped from a zoo? Can we talk? Do you understand the roughing the passer rule? Can I get a selfie with you? Can you give me a lift to Perth Amboy?”
A. So. You want a story? There’s your story.

Q. Wow, you’re right. Like a sci-fi story by Philip K. Dick.
A. Careful. Never call a bear a dick. Remember how Moby Dick turned out.

Q. That was a whale.
A. And what is a bear? The Moby Dick of the forest.

Q. So what should I call my bear?
A. That’s a no-brainer.

Q. I don’t underst…
A. Sprinkles. You’re welcome. Next!

©Patrick A. McGuire and A Hint of Light 2013-2018, all rights reserved.

Posted in Absurd and/or zany, F.A.Q., News You Can Use (Sort of), The human comedy | Tagged , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

The smell of anarchy

I do some of my best thinking in the shower. Just me, hot water, a bar of soap and a wandering mind.

(By the way, when you tell someone you took a shower and you receive a standing ovation is it important to clarify whether or not you removed your clothes before hand? Or is that detail pretty much understood except by most people in Congress who, if their clothes are soaking wet every morning when they arrive at the Immigrant Inquisition, might have difficulty getting re-elected?)

Not so long ago I stood in the shower and started thinking about a sports report on TV. Our big slugger was placed on the Disabled List because he “tweaked his groin.” And while I was soaping my bald spot I had this thought: Do we really need to know a ballplayer ‘tweaked his groin?’ What does that even mean? If it’s what I think it means, wasn’t that a mortal sin back in the day when nuns had to be licensed wrestlers?

An unconnected thought (UT) popped into my wandering soapy mind: To keep from forgetting important meetings and chores, you should write things down on a to-do list, then draw a line through each one when it is completed.

Remember, if you don’t put it on your list you can’t draw a line through it. Drawing a line through an item on a to-do list is one of those joys that separate us from animals, the people who wear pointy sheets to meetings and those who like to find excuses to say groin.

So. One recent day I went to the store for a new brick of brindle-colored, wash-your-mouth-out-with-brown-soap Fels Naptha (good and so good for you.) Also, I was getting the shakes and an eye tic and badly needed to draw a line through something, anything, on my to do list.

I found the soap aisle packed with man-sized bottles of what appeared to be shampoo or hippopotamus glue. The store brazenly called it body wash.

“Where’s the Fels Naptha?” I queried a passing stock boy. He looked at me as if I’d come from the 20th century. The early part. With all the world wars.

“The soap,” I said.

“You’re standing in front of it.”

“No, the bar soap.”

“You mean bar wash? Two aisles over between the car wash and the sump pump wash.”

“I just want to take a shower.”

“With clothes on, or off?”

Impertinent, I thought, for a stock boy. But then I realized I was talking to a millennial. He stepped forward and grabbed a bottle of something called Axe.

“Axe wash?” I protested. “But I don’t own an axe.”

“It’s the scent of Anarchy.”

“Wow. I love the smell of Anarchy in the morning.”

“You’ll need this, too.” He shoved a rough item into my hand. “It’s like a sponge but it’s actually an exfoliating mesh loofa pouf.”

“Pouf?” I asked, horrified. “I have to wash with a…a…pouf?” But by then the stock boy had moved on, as millennials so often do.

So I took the Axe and the pouf home. I removed most of my clothes, stood under the shower and poured some of the axe onto my pouf. (It just sounds wrong.) It was orange, the color of radiator coolant, but it had a scent vaguely reminiscent of a perspiring marimba player in old Meh-he-co.

According to Google, that’s exactly what anarchy smells like. With just one whiff I suddenly felt like overthrowing the government — and might have, if it hadn’t already been done.

Now I use my semi-automatic, gas-operated, clip-fed, dead-skin-exfoliating lavender loufa pouf for overthrowing the K-Mac regime here at home. Hasn’t worked so far; sometimes I feel like K-Mac knows a little too much about what I’m thinking. (Note for to-do list: Stop using my outside voice inside.)

Anyway, anarchy wasn’t built in a day. So I’m giving it a full week. And a half.

Until then, I just dare you to knock this pouf off my shoulder.

©Patrick A. McGuire and A Hint of Light 2013-2018, all rights reserved.

Posted in Absurd and/or zany, Mockery and derision, News You Can Use (Sort of) | Tagged , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Would it kill you?

Read an interesting article in the latest copy of “Interesting Articles and Ammo” magazine. A woman in Davenport, Iowa was vacuuming the living room carpet when she came up against her husband, seated in his chair, reading “Interesting Articles and Ammo” magazine. The woman nudged her husband’s shoes and he threw her one of those “Woman, did you just nudge my shoes?” looks.

“Hello!” she shouted, her sarcasm sucked away by the roar of her Shark Rotator NV800. “I’m vacuuming.”

He responded “What? I can’t hear you over the vacuum.”

She shut off the vacuum and said “Would it kill you to lift your feet?”

His response was lost in the sound of the vacuum being switched on again. He still hadn’t lifted his feet until she screamed “Lift your dang feet you ink spot between the hams of hell.”

He did so and she vacuumed beneath his feet. When she was done she noticed that her husband’s face bore a frozen, bluish, shocked look of horror, a little like a possum caught in the headlights of a speeding beer truck, post impact.

When the police arrived she told them she was pretty sure the mister was playing possum. One of them said “When they look stiff and cold and dead like that, their playing days are over. If you’d remember that.”

The headline in the next day’s Davenport Slipcover said it all:

Man dies after wife, armed with rotating shark,
Ignores plea that lifting his feet would kill him

The Supreme Court eventually nullified her conviction of Manslaughter By Really Mean Words.  It said manslaughter – literally man’s laughter had not occurred, since the woman’s words triggered no laughter at all. Her only crime, the court said, was trying to be funny without being funny, an all too common occurrence among the country’s estimated 136 million out-of-work comedians (not including all members of Congress and Wolf Blitzer.)

In the court’s minority opinion, Justice Oliver Garagedooropener Homes argued that since nature abhors a vacuum, it also abhors the use of a vacuum cleaner to suck up dirt which — along with bottled water and air pollution — is one of nature’s exclusive franchises (see the windy Wikipedia entry under Tornado). “And by the way,” adds Justice Homes, “Fool with Mother Nature at your own risk.”

The case has highlighted similar would-it-kill-you incidents nationwide. For example, while seated in his Orca-lounger in Daytona Beach, Florida, Dick “The Dick” Dudley rattled the ice cubes in his empty glass and shouted to his shout-worn wife (busily waxing his bowling ball)  “Would it kill you to get me another Rob Roy?”

Wearily, she poured scotch and vermouth over ice, but instead of adding the called-for-bitters, she laid a very hairy eyeball on the glass while muttering “Bastardo!” According to the police report, when she reached for the jar of maraschino cherries her gizzard gave out and she fell over dead.

Hearing the thump on the floor, Dudley released a heavier than usual sigh, strolled into the kitchen, saw his drink and took a sip. It was missing something, is what he told the police. Stooping in disgust to pick up one of a hundred spilled maraschino cherries, he  noticed his wife, apparently taking a nap on the floor. He shook his head and felt sad, he told police while rattling his ice cubes.

After his conviction of felonious dopery, the headline read:

Depraved Dick is Sentenced to
Life of Bitters, Hold The Cherry

Interestingly, the debate has been good for the sucking community. A vacuum cleaner company invented a machine that sucks the shoes, socks and pants off a reluctant feet lifter. Very few fatalities or maimed genitalia have been recorded.

Recently, though, a controversial “Sarcasm defense” has watered down Depraved Dick laws. Avoid a depravity charge by simply uttering “Oops, Just Kidding.”

As a result, it’s now legal to say things like “Would it kill you…

    • if I threw a rattlesnake in your lap?
    • if I squirted you with plutonium 209? (Now available in spray cans. Do not confuse with plutonium 210.)
    • to stop talking about LeBron James?
    • to shut up every now and then?
    • that’s right, every, now and then
    • to get off your butt and go get a new one?
    • to drop dead?
    • to rock my soul in the bosom of Abraham or, if Abraham is unavailable, how about yours?

Oops, Just kidding!*

*So, would it kill you to laugh?

©Patrick A. McGuire and A Hint of Light 2013-2018, all rights reserved.

Posted in funny, News You Can Use (Sort of), The human comedy | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Large-fruit paranoia

Into the tire shop, then, to pick up his car with its freshly rotated tires. He waits in the showroom, surrounded by hundreds of gleaming black tires hanging from the walls or poised in garish cardboard floor displays.

The place has one overpowering vibe: the singular reek of rubber gone mad. His eyes begin to glaze over. Boredom, thy name is Hankook Dyna Pro.

To be sure, there are those who rank tires just below (1) sex and (2) sex with tires. But this guy, he’s never been a car man: engines, cylinders, brake pads, four-on-the-floor, cup holders, valves, six lords a leapin’, plugs, glove compartment injectors, mud flaps. Couldn’t tell a tapit rod from a pretzel rod.

No, he is here at the tire-slash-repair shop for one reason: Adam and Eve blew it in the Garden of Eden.

To pay for their sin, everyone must spend Xteen hours/days/weeks in auto shops with a waiting-room TV permanently tuned to Fox news and a customer of questionable thinkity and smellity endlessly reciting an epic pome about the golden-haired Don Donaldo de la Casa Blanca.

The maître du garage, a man with Robespierre embroidered in red on a white patch just under his laughably over-penned pocket protector, enters from the repair shop.

“We must parlez-vous,” says M. Robespierre, “about your rear end.”

A number of WTF thoughts tumble invisibly from the folds of the customer’s gray cells onto the floor of his hippocampus. Fortunately, the hippo is off campus today on a job interview.

“My rear end?”

“Oui,” says the wrench monger (say moan-GARE). “Ze differential.”

He’s been dreading this day of heavenly retribution for years, ever since he lied in the confessional to Father “Holy Moley” Foley about missing his nightly prayers three times instead of the square of the hypotenuse times eleven.

How he wishes that, like other men, he could have an intelligent conversation with a mechanic about his differential.

But instead of drawing on a lifelong, free-will fascination with tires, motors, hoses and dual carbs, he recalls only the memorized-at-yardstick-point screed of an escaped warg rider disguised as a nun: do good (fat chance, bozo); avoid evil (fatter chance); have no fear (just kidding); feel no guilt (don’t make me laugh); have no fun (now we’re talking); I’m watching you (don’t try to hide behind that cardboard Michelin tire man).

His job, his hobby, his eau de cologne as a youth was all about toeing the line of righteousness and praying nightly against wrongteousness. Put another way, his life was ruled by the rigid duality of peanut butter v. jelly. To even hint at a curiosity about, say, cream cheese and jelly would trigger a visit from the Spanish Inquisition.

Ze moan-GARE begins talking about his customer’s differential. “Ze main symptom of ze bad rear end is ze noise. Ze noise in ze rear end is never ze good sign.”

While our man does wonder about the monstrously fake French-Spanish accent of ZmG, he decides getting an explanation might be more complicated than ze differential.

The Robester begins speaking in tongues, using words like clanking, clunking, clinking, clucking, clapper-clawing clod-hopping, Clytemnestra, and Cleveland, painting the picture of a missing gear tooth on, near or just very close friends with the pinion, (pronounced peen-yohn).

“If ze problem is on ze peen-yohn…” he begins, thrusting both arms upward like the pope waiting to catch a holy watermelon from on high…His voice drifts away, allowing time for his customer’s imagination and large-fruit paranoia to fill in ze blanks.

A problem on the pinion. The damned pinion. Whatever the hell that is.

Silently, he curses Adam. Then he curses Eve. He curses his Time-Life Book-of-the-Month Club guide to understanding the family automobile, still encased in its bolo-knife-proof, unopenable, Lubyanka-grade shrink-wrap from 1974.

“Look,” he says, knowing deep down that it is he who is morally responsible for his rear end, just as any man is responsible at the End of Days (of Our Lives) for the differential between heaven and hell. “How do I know if my problem is on the pinion?”

“Ho, ho, honh,” ze moan-GARE chuckles frenchly. “ze problaim, she is always on ze peen-yohn.”

Bottom line, the customer knows the differential is a tangible thing and not some moral abstraction. But he also admits to himself that tangling with a tangible rear-end can only lead to a most dangerous dalliance with fromage a la creme.

His only recourse is to send an urgent text to Madame X, known in the rear-end community as ze dame avec une grande hatpeen-yohn. When it comes to her rear end — so very tangible, but don’t distract her —  she never takes la merde from ze moan-GARE.

©Patrick A. McGuire and A Hint of Light 2013-2018, all rights reserved.

Posted in Absurd and/or zany, News You Can Use (Sort of) | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

It will heal before your wedding

Q. Sometimes people call those who disagree with them communists. But then you’ll hear them calling the same people fascists. Can people be both communist and fascist?
A. Not if they hope to attend their respective balls.

Q. Don’t the views of one make it impossible to share the views of the other?
A. A normal person might think that. Anyone who has ever read a book might think that. Anyone who has ever vacationed on Neptune might not.

Q. So a fascist is a fascist and a communist is a communist and never the twains do meet?
A. Not quite. Google Stalingrad.

Q. I’m still confused. How do communists differ from fascists?
A. Okay. Write this down.

  • The star of communism is the shlub. Since communists believe everyone is equal, everyone is a shlub.
  • In a Communist society nobody owns anything. On the other hand everyone owns nothing.
  • Freed from the oppression of capitalism, shlubs are assigned cushy lifetime jobs at places like the Iron Cushion Factory or The Noose Works and the popular Polonium 210 Craft Beer Brewery (“The one beer to have when you’re having only one.”)
  • Under Communism, the government controls all production. Theoretically this guarantees material abundance unless some government shlub forgets to push the production button (which is why they have the Gulag).
  • Shlubs are paid in the finest grains of gravel which may be exchanged at the party’s commissariat, run by the proletariat (aka The Pro, who also does tricks with a lariat.)
  • The commissariat is closed Mondays through whatever other days are left that week. It provides everything shlubs need as long as it isn’t edible or nice, lest everything fall down and go boom.
  • In theory, the communist state controls nothing except for the number of breaths you may take, which can be as high as 167 on a good day.
  • Okay, I’m switching now to my fascist pants. The star of fascism is the state, sometimes known as the Glorious State, sometimes known as Strontium 90, sometimes as Whooping Cough.
  • The fascist state feeds on glory and pork rinds, usually through pork rind trade wars (very easy to win), bumper sticker sales and the annual conquest of Poland.
  • The fascist army consists of men of great impotence (sic) dressed in stylish black uniforms (sick) designed by a team of 12-year old hellboys.
  • While communism has no classes (or class), fascists live in a strict class structure:
    1. lower class working stiffs on the bottom;
    2. the educated petit bourgeoise class, co-opted by their bottomless need for not being on the bottom. (Cute note: the working stiffs call the petit bourgeoise teenie weenies.)
    3. Your wealthy business bottoms in first class
  • All are led by the self-installed, craziest bottom of all who inevitably falls head over heels in love with himself, slips on a reichsbanana peel and goes boom.
  • Fascists devote their lives to endlessly pimping the state’s massive glory jones. But since individuals have no value in fascist society, nobody ever gets any personal glory points. As fascists like to say “Whoever dies with the most glory is dead.”

Q. Can we go back to your comment about communists and fascists respecting their balls?
A. No.

Q. What exactly is the alt-right?
A. The alt in alt-right comes from the phrase “ ‘alt or I veel shooot.’”

Q. Is there an alt-left?
A. Yes, they’re known as “The left behind.” The alt in alt-left comes from an old Rooskie saying: Ваш локоть близко, но вы не можете укусить его. It can mean any or all of the following:*

• There is no truth in feet.
• Elder-berry is in the kitchen-garden, and the uncle is in Kiev.
• Nobody goes to Tula with one’s own samovar.
• I’d like to drink honey with your lips.
• That’s where the dog is buried.
• A goose is not a pig’s friend.
• It will heal before your wedding.
• Health leaves you in pounds, but comes in zolotniks.
• When the crawfish whistles on the mountain.
• Beware the goat from its front side, the horse from its back side, and the evil man from any side.
• It makes chicken laugh.
• A tomtit in your hand is better than a crane in the sky.
• Best is the enemy of good.
• A thief’s hat is burning.
• Не that has nо head needs no hat.

Q. I don’t get it.
A. Think of it this way: Your elbow is close, yet you can’t bite it.

Q. Wow. Now everything makes sense.

*Those silly Rooskies:

©Patrick A. McGuire and A Hint of Light 2013-2018, all rights reserved.

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