Short Subjects in Series

Fifth Friday Footnotes, Follow-ups and Far-Flung Fripperies:
• I wonder how much of the Wall Street panic has been driven by the sight of bankers and lawmakers working weekends.
• In these uncertain financial times, I’m doubling down on “forever” stamps. They won’t lose their value, and they fit well inside my mattress.
• Does anything ever impend besides doom?
• Now that we’re paying three dollars for a gallon of gasoline, can we please remove the nine tenths of a penny added at the end of the price? The fraction adds one almost-complete insult to a larger-than-ever injury.
• Using the same logic, now that we’ll be dialing ten digits to ask a neighbor for a cup of sugar, can we dispense with dialing “1” first? Who would oppose that ten percent reduction in dialing labor?
• Of course, there’s always the possibility that we’ll instead go next door and knock on the door to ask for that cup of sugar. Not a bad thing at all.
• I worry that homeowners are beginning to fence off their front yards now, isolating neighbors from each other even more.
• Motion detectors on urinals may seem benign, but can a civilization be given great odds for survival when it no longer trusts its citizens to flush their own public toilets?
• Is it my imagination or have baseball caps become more popular that baseball?
• Have you ever personally furrowed anything but a brow? Have you?
• Nobody should have more than one, but if they did, they’d be mothers-in-law. So when you have more than one know-it-all, are they called knows-it-all?
• I’m more than sympathetic with people who takes things very literally. As a child, I would read a sign that said “Absolutely No Admittance” and wonder why they put a door there. And when I saw a roadside sign that said “Speed Limit Enforced by Aircraft,” I couldn’t get scenes of aerial bombings out of my head. (Airplanes can enforce speed limit laws from a distance, but enforcing the speed limit itself would require direct intervention.)
• Leftovers are God’s opinion that the world should go on.
• What happens when two young people with hyphenated last names start a family of their own? Could their children have four last names joined with hyphens? Did anybody think about how this practice, however laudable, is not sustainable?
• Clones are people two.
• Roundabouts not only relieve drivers from idling at stop lights. They also prevent those awkward avert-your-gaze moments with placarded homeless audiences. Is that what commuters will like best about them?
• If Apple Computer and google merged, the world would get much better and quickly, in my opinion.
• Airlines scored the public relations coup of the decade by getting travelers to confuse their transit time with flight duration — overlooking commuting to the airport, standing in security lines, sitting on the tarmac, and waiting at baggage claim.
• Is there any compulsory activity in American life that requires more walking than changing planes for a connecting flight?
• Today is the first day of your ongoing, inexorable death.
• I don’t wonder about lefties who carry water bottles everywhere, obsessing about the dangers of dehydration. I wonder why they always screw the cap so carefully between sips. That’s not really true. I wonder about both.
• Can’t we ask Piercy and Torrey to take turns being mayor? Maybe they will anyway.
• Lanyards make me nervous.
• After returning to Eugene from the Middle East, I feel an urge to organize my fellow-tea-drinkers as an oppressed minority.
• Help me out here. When I buy a large tea instead of a small tea, what am I getting for the additional money besides extra hot water?
• Beware the upcoming aftermath.


Don Kahle ( offers the following biographical notes:
• He published the Comic News for a decade in Eugene and loved Boyd’s Factoids as much as anyone.
• Had his short attention span been diagnosed earlier, he may have been medicated throughout his childhood.
• He’s not sure whether it’s OK for a pacifist writer to use bullet points.
• He believes readers should have the last word by visiting and leaving comments.