Fripperies: (n.) Bullets With No Target

Fifth Friday footnotes, follow-ups and far-flung fripperies:

• Remove the humans from the first week of July (but not the human activities) and you’re left with an epic battle between sprinklers and sparklers.

• Which week of weather wears us out worse? The teasingly sunny week we usually get in early March? Or the typical June gloom we’ve just endured?

• Half my shoes need new laces. After wondering where I’ll find red laces for my Rockports, I realized I felt surprisingly good about myself. Once I wanted to live forever. Now I’m content if I outlast my footwear.

• All eyes have been on Egypt the past few weeks, as military and religious leaders jockey for power. I’ve been watching hopefully because the power elites have been keeping their eyes on the people, trying to please (or at least not disturb) them. So long as leaders fear the people, all will be well.

• I bought a pillow at the store and it came in a box. It could be me, but somebody’s unclear on the concept. Did the manufacturer mean to limit the free squeezes before purchase? Are they propping up the cardboard cartel?

• Garrison Keillor’s best Cuthbert quip, in case you missed it: “Clothes make the man. Naked people have little or no influence over society.”

• “Best Kept Secrets” never are. The real ones you haven’t heard about, of course.

• Ninety percent of happiness is knowing how long things take (or how long things last) and being OK with it.

• Gravity is the first limit we encounter in life. Brevity is the last.

• Trouble with highway driving, if you don’t do it all the time, is you forget how to forget how dangerous it all is — barreling along in metal enclosures, surrounded by strangers doing the same thing, often in the opposite direction.

• I asked Eugene Ballet Company Managing Director Riley Grannan how his dancers are feeling this week. When they pass Olympic athletes, do they feel inferior? If so, now they know how the rest of us feel all the time.

• I’m a 90-minute man in a 60-minute world.

• You often can’t tell if somebody has succeeded or if they haven’t finished failing yet.

• After all these years of paying self-employment taxes, I have a new career goal: to somehow make my own funeral tax-deductible.

• I oppose “hate crime” laws, yet I oppose hate and I oppose crime. “Hate crime” legislation reminds me of Grape Nuts, which has nothing to do with grapes or nuts.

• If a rototiller is the machine that rototills, what do you call the operator of the machine? A rototillerer?

• Please don’t make me pretend to care.

• People seldom want what they say they want. Mostly they want whatever’s on the way to what they originally wanted.

• I still remember the disappointment of my first therapy session. Our hour was up after 50 minutes.

• We complain that the rich get richer, but it’s worse than that. Riches are getting richer. Thanks to computerized trading algorithms, money can now multiply itself without any direct human involvement.

• Gaze less. Bask more.

• There are very few morning people. Most are people with dogs. Dogs are the morning people.

• Texting is a digital drop-in. We’ve learned to chat with our thumbs.

• Eventually our webmasters will no longer feel a thrill when we call them “master.” After that, we’re all in trouble.

• After writing about bullies, I sent a message to my childhood nemesis. (Kevin had tried twice to “friend” me on Facebook.) His first words back to me were, “I’m gay.” I haven’t learned how he connects that to the meanness I experienced, but maybe I will.

• Leftovers notwithstanding, I hate repeating myself.

• I like lawn signs. It’s my best chance to know what my neighbors think or care about. Collectively, they’re like a mood ring for the neighborhood.

• We have so much padding because we sit too much. We sit too much because we have so much padding.

• Childhood ends before we’ve covered all we need to learn as children.

• It goes without saying that the work speaks for itself.


Don Kahle ( writes a column each Friday for The Register-Guard and blogs