Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Martin Luther's Other Lists

His 95 Theses get all the press coverage, but Martin Luther was perhaps the most prolific list maker of his time. Here are three of his other, albeit less popular, lists.

"Five Women Who Have Refused to Have Intercourse with Me Due to My Smell"

  1. Edith Dudley
  2. My wife, Katherine
  3. Elizabeth Sutton
  4. Mary, whose last name I have forgotten
  5. Joyce Langley

"My Three Favorite Appendages"

  1. Left arm
  2. Left leg
  3. Right leg

"Seventeen Names People Have Called Me at the Market"

  1. ML
  2. Marty
  3. Dirtbag
  4. Stink-Face
  5. Turd Shoes
  6. “Farty”
  7. Dick Lips
  8. Thief
  9. Scammer
  10. Two-Eyed Pile of Crap
  11. Sack of Crap
  12. That guy who doesn’t wear underpants
  13. Heretic
  14. Fatso
  15. Bird Seed
  16. Beans for Brains
  17. Tiny Ballsack O’Henry

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

A Haiku Written by My Dog

Bark bark bark bark bark
I have to go poop real bad
Bark bark bark woof bark

Sunday, August 17, 2008

The Mystery of Rogers Street

Another murder. It was just like any other Monday in Baltimore.

“Why Monday mornings?” wondered Lieutenant Jeff Pesh aloud. “Can’t they wait until we’re awake?”

He was assigned to investigate the scene. At the corner of Lock and Rogers lay a body, shot twice in the stomach. “This won’t lead anywhere,” said Pesh when he saw the corpse. “These things never get solved.”

He kneeled next to the body and found a handgun, the murder weapon. He dusted it for prints and found two exact matches, which led him to Peter Melden, a man who calmly admitted to committing the murder.

Jeff Pesh went home that night and slept soundly.

Wow. I honestly though there was more to that story. You know, my publisher probably isn’t going to be pleased. We agreed on 350-400 pages and this thing is maybe a quarter of one page. I just assumed there was more to the story; that it would have several interesting twists and turns, clues and leads and interesting characters and red herrings and all that stuff. But then I sat down to write it and, what do you know, the whole mystery was solved in one night. You know, a lot of people have told me I should have some sort of an outline planned before I start writing and I always tell them to mind their own business or “shut your face,” but now I think they might be on to something there. It’s just like when people tell me I shouldn’t eat soup out of my shoes. But what do they know? It tastes better like that.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

"Ruined Plans"

Dear Best Buy,

I regret to inform you that I will not be purchasing the Spider-Man 2 DVD this Saturday as per the original plan. I noticed you are currently advertising it at the sale price of $6.99 and wanted to purchase it immediately, but my father suggested I use the “24-Hour Rule” in order to decide whether I wanted it because of your advertisement, or if I actually needed it. After much deliberation, I have taken the former side. I realized that I would not want to re-watch Spidey’s battle with Doc Ock or his on-again, off-again relationship with Mary Jane very often. And whenever the urge hits, it is on television frequently.
Thank you for your time. I will be using my allowance money instead to purchase two bottles of Sunny Delight.

Best wishes,
Mikey Thompson

"Why Mel Doesn't Work at the Tattoo Shop Anymore"

“Hey there.”

“Oh, hey. What brings you back to the shop?”

“I’m sorry to say it, but I want a refund for this tattoo you gave me.”

“What? Why? It’s a great piece.”

“I know. I really do enjoy it. It’s just that the response to it hasn’t exactly been what I had expected.”

“Really? What happened?”

“It just seems the people in this town aren’t as open to art as I thought. People just can’t appreciate a good old-fashioned tattoo of a buffalo’s scrotum across a man’s face anymore.”

“That’s strange. The tattoo is so perfect. When you close your eyes it looks like your face is the buffalo scrotum.”

“Thank you. That’s what I was going for. But people just seem to stare or scoff disapprovingly. Even at work they don’t approve. I thought I worked in a fairly liberal school district, but apparently the superintendent considers it in poor taste for a third grade teacher to have an animal’s scrotum on his face.”

“I’m so sorry about that. We just emptied out the registers to cover rent so we can’t give you a refund. Would you want us to turn it into something else?”

“I suppose that could work. How about something nice? Something everyone could enjoy?”

“Sure. We could stick to the animal theme. What about a cute puppy?”

“Maybe. I was thinking more like an image of a grizzly bear.”

“Okay, I can do that.”

“Could the grizzly bear be assassinating Abraham Lincoln?”

“In a tattoo on your face?”

“Yeah.”

“Honestly I do not think that is a good idea. In fact, I really don’t think you should have gotten that tattoo in the first place. You are aware of what a buffalo’s scrotum is, right?”

“Your employee Mel told me it was an international symbol of friendship.”

“That is not true.”

Thursday, August 7, 2008

"An Unusual Diet"

“Thank you for keeping the food journal. You know, most clients don’t stick with it.”

“Oh, it was no problem. I really want to lose this weight.”

“Great. I want to help you lose the weight.”

“Thanks.”

“So let’s take a look at your eating habits. You started on Monday, right?”

“Correct.”

“Okay, so for breakfast you had an apple and some oatmeal. That’s great. And for lunch you had a salad with some chicken.”

“Yep. It really wasn’t so bad.”

“Good, good. Now you had a snack of carrots after lunch. You seem to have this diet thing down.”

“Thanks. You know, it’s really not as bad as people make it out to be.”

“Now here’s what concerns me. Your dinner on Monday.”

“What about it?”

“It says here that you ate two Puerto Rican men.”

“I had the dressing on the side.”

“That’s not the part I’m worried about. I’m more interested in the cannibalism.”

“It’s a family thing. It was my cousin’s graduation.”

“Okay. Let’s move on. It looks like your eating habits started slipping on Tuesday morning.”

“How so?”

“Instead of an apple and oatmeal it says here that you had a dozen Roman candles. I don’t think you should consume those.”

“I’m sorry. I caved into my craving. They were so delicious.”

“And for lunch you had a gross of bottle rockets and a mousetrap?”

“Yes.”

“What is that? A hundred and forty-four bottle rockets? And a mousetrap?”

“Right.”

“Did you light the bottle rockets?”

“I did.”

“How did it feel?”

“Explosive.”

“Why did you eat the mousetrap? Because there was peanut butter on it?”

“No, that’s ridiculous. I ate it to trap a mouse.”

“Had you eaten a mouse as well?”

“Not yet.”

“Are you going to eat a mouse?”

“As soon as I find a tasty one.”

“Okay, fine. And for lunch on Wednesday you’ve written that you ate a million tomatoes. That doesn’t even make sense. Why did you eat a million tomatoes?”

“They were on sale.”

“Get out of my office.”

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

"A Blind Romance"

“I love you, Brenda,” said Tom.

“I love you too.”

“I think we should take our relationship to the next level.”

“Oh, absolutely!”

Tom unzipped his pants and tripped several times trying to get them off.

“It’s okay, baby,” he said. “I’ll be alright.”

“Come here, Tom,” said Brenda. She reached for him and knocked over a lamp.

“Don’t worry about it. We’ll find it later. Now where’s that pretty face of yours?” Tom swatted the air four times before finding it. “Ah, there it is.”

“Wait,” said Brenda. “We should turn on some music.”

“Of course, of course.” Tom stood up and walked into a wall. He spun around, fumbled with the stereo until it turned on, and fell through his glass coffee table on the way back to the couch.

“I’m fine, Brenda. Let’s get back to it.”

Brenda’s arm shot upwards and knocked down a picture frame. “Was that a picture frame?”

“I think so.”

“What is it a picture of?”

“I have no idea.”

For a few moments neither of them broke anything. They were really into it. Brenda reached for Tom. She was surprised with what she found.

“You never told me you have five penises,” she said.

“Those are my fingers, Brenda,” said Tom.

They got back into it. Tom thought Brenda was the girl for him; that they would be together forever. But then he felt her back.

“What is that, Brenda? What is that I feel?”

“What? There’s nothing on my back.”

“Brenda. I can feel your Braille tattoo. I felt those dots and they say Brenda Loves Mark. As in my best friend Mark?”

“Stop, Tom. It’s not like that.”

“Brenda, I can not believe this. You need to tell me straight. Have you been seeing Mark?”

“Not exactly.”

“Right.”

They got back into it.

When they were done Tom looked to where he thought Brenda was and said, “Brenda, I think it’s time. You’re the prettiest girl I’ve ever heard and I want to spend the rest of my life with you. Will you marry me?”

“Of course.”

Fifteen minutes later they finally got the ring on.

Their wedding was held that June and when the decorator found out whom his clients were he didn’t bother showing up. No one noticed his absence.

Monday, August 4, 2008

"A Great Friend"

The summer of 1994 was the best time of my life. It was a classic American summer; I was twelve and every morning my friends and I would meet up in our neighborhood’s empty lot. We never had any sort of plan, but once we showed up there was always some sort of adventure to have.

My friends and I were as close as could be. There was John, Bill, Steve, Mike, and Jamarcus “T-Bone” Willis. We had known each other practically our whole lives. Well, except for T-Bone. He was a twenty-eight year old African American recently escaped from prison we had met behind the movie theater. He was a great guy, that T-Bone.

Our adventures were incredible, or at least they seemed so at the time. We would explore the woods or swim in Lake Mohawk or let T-Bone hide in our treehouse. T-Bone always was sprinting into that treehouse with sackfulls of what he called loot. "Those are my other friends," he'd say of the blaring sirens. "We're playing some cops and robbers." Whenever we let him stay in there he'd reward us with a car stereo.

You know, T-Bone always would suggest some crazy things for us to do. Every day it was, “Let’s break-in here,” or “How about we torch the sheriff’s office?” What a character that T-Bone was. He always wanted to light government buildings on fire.

Actually, now that I think about it, I’m not so sure we should have been hanging around T-Bone. He may have been a bad influence on us kids. But I know we all remember the last time we saw T-Bone. He had been shot by the police eleven times after stealing one of their cruisers and leading them on a three-hour chase. His clothing tattered and his mouth gushing blood, he looked us right in the eyes and said, “You guys were the best friends I ever had.”

I’ll always remember that summer of 1994. No matter how many purses he snatched or grams of cocaine he sold, T-Bone was a great friend.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

"Always Check the Receipt"

“Excuse me, sir. Did you know that the highly anticipated release of the Chooper DVD is available in both regular and special editions?”

“Yeah, I’m just going to get the regular.”

“But did you know that the special edition includes a second bonus disc for only four dollars more?”

“I’m going to stick with the regular.”

“How bout this: I’ll throw in fifteen bags of popcorn with the special edition.”

“No, thanks.”

“Okie dokie. How do fifteen bags of popcorn and some sort of illegally imported marsupial sound?”

“Like a kangaroo?”

“Yeah.”

“You know, I think I’ll just get the regular edition.”

“Wait just one second, mister. How about fifteen bags of popcorn, one illegal marsupial, and a gallon of Pete Rose’s blood?”

“It’s tempting, but I came here for the regular edition and I’m just going to stick to the plan.”

“Alright, here it comes, the final offer: Fifteen bags of popcorn, one smothered kangaroo, one gallon of the finest Pete Rose blood, a jumbo jet, and an army of Puerto Rican jugglers to entertain you at all times. All for just four dollars more than the regular edition.”

“Thanks for the offer, but I’m going to have to pass.”

“Okay, sir. You win. But just out of curiosity may I ask why you turned down that astounding offer?”

“It’s because of your penis. I didn’t want to mention it, but your entire penis has been hanging through your zipper the whole time you’ve been talking to me. It’s offensive. Had it just been the scrotum I would have considered the special edition. But the fact that I saw your penis made me think, ‘This is not a person I should be dealing with. I do not want to purchase something from him.’ My recommendation to you, from one human being to another, is to put your penis back inside your pants. You will be a more successful salesman that way.”

Doug purchased his regular edition of the movie and walked out of the store. He looked at his receipt and noticed that the store was called TJ’s Wholesale, the Only Store in the County Whose Employees Must Hang Their Penises Out of their Pants At All Times!

Then Doug felt like the idiot.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

"The Attracting Power of Beehives"

Mick had known Sarah since elementary school. Actually, Mick had loved Sarah since elementary school. But he never had the courage to tell her how he felt, and by the time they reached middle and high school they were so involved with their separate social circles that it seemed impossible to him that they could ever be together.

She was an attractive, popular girl. He was quiet and kept to himself. His greatest passion was the enormous bee hive he kept in his backyard. He tended to it with loving care and studied up on bees as much as he could to ensure his prized possessions were as comfortable as could be.

One day after school Mick was at the local library reading the B volume of the encyclopedia when he saw Sarah walk in. “Oh, she’s just here for homework or something,” he thought. “She won’t even see me.”

He carefully observed her from behind the encyclopedia. She walked back and forth, up and down the aisles, until she finally found what she was looking for in the magazine section. She picked up an issue and headed for the check-out counter, which was located right in front of the table Mick was sitting at.

Mick mustered up all his courage so that when she walked by he said, “Hey, Sarah.”

“Oh, hey. Mick, isn’t it?”

“Yeah, I-“ He stopped. Mick was stunned. No, it couldn’t be. Not possible! He had to ask. “Is that Bee Hives Weekly you’re holding?”

“Oh, yeah.”

“What, is it for a project or something?”

“No, it’s for me.”

“I didn’t know you like beehives!”

“I don’t,” she said. “I love beehives.”

With those words their romance took off like, well, a bee in flight. They attended bee conferences, hung bee posters on each other’s walls, and nursed each other’s stings.

The next time you think a beehive is worthless or a nuisance, remember Mick and Sarah, two fictional characters who fell in love thanks to a mutual admiration for beehives.

Just because they’re fictional doesn’t mean…I don’t really know the point of this story anymore. Something to do with beehives and love. But, hey, it was touching, wasn’t it?

Friday, August 1, 2008

"Corporate Sponsorship"

This is an excerpt from a grammar textbook titled Glencoe Grammar and Composition, Grade 8. Presented by Papa John's.