Monday, July 31, 2017

Bear on the Links


BC Wildlife officers said today that they had apprehended a large black bear on a suburban golf course. The bear was tranquillized, caged, and later released in a wooded area.

"We spotted him on the ninth tee,"said Officer Clyde Dooley. "Hairiest bear I've ever seen. But I gotta say, he had a good swing."

Officer Ted Bilbow agreed, and added, "Surprising thing was to see a bear wearing plaid Bermuda shorts."

"And," said Dooley, "for a bear, he knew a lot of obscenities."

Freelance sports commentator Slap Maxwell later said he believed the "bear" was actually a golfer named Fred Guilfoyle. "It was a very hot afternoon," said Maxwell, "and Fred pulled off his shirt. Fred is a very hairy guy, so it's easy to see how he could have been taken for a bear."

Mabel Guilfoyle, Fred's wife, said she is not concerned, even though her husband has not returned home after 36 hours. "He does like to spend some time at the 19th hole," she said.

To be safe, however, she has left an electric razor on the putting green. Mrs. Guilfoyle said, "I kept telling him to shave his back."

Friday, July 28, 2017

The Enforcer

Anthony Scaramucci:  The Doug Stamper of the Trump White House.

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Bear Sightings and Bare Sightings

A friend in a woodsy suburb reports a family of bears taking up residence in his backyard. This probably means that my friend's family will stay indoors until snow falls and the bears go for a long snooze.

We have no bears in this neighborhood, but we do have some heavily hirsute residents. Elderly Mrs. McGuinness said she was sure she saw a large black bear prowling through the grounds. I assured her there was nothing to worry about; I would go out and tame the bear.

"Fred," I said to the hairy jogger, "put on a shirt. Or shave your back."

Monday, July 24, 2017

Jared and the Pa-in-Law

Jared: "Honey, I'm home!"

Ivanka: "Oh, darling--you were wonderful today! Daddy was so pleased!"

Jared: "I'd like to thank him. Where is President Daddy?"

Ivanka: "He's upstairs, watching 'The Simpsons'."

Jared: "The Simpsons"?

Ivanka: "He's hoping he'll get a guest shot, as a voice over!"

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Really Objectionable

Following a touchdown by Nick Moore, part of the BC Lions' brilliant corps of receivers, Moore was cited for "objectionable conduct," and the team given a ten-yard penalty.

The objectionable conduct? Apparently the referee didn't like the way Moore tossed the ball down after scoring. It's a good thing the man in the black and white stripes didn't see Nick's disgusted look--he would have handed him fifteen yards and a game misconduct.

There have been some weird calls lately, and none more painful, to at least one fan, than a touchdown on a punt return by the Argos' Martese Jackson, called back on an official's totally undeserved "illegal block" ruling. This cost that fan one million smackers in the Safeway-Sobey's "Touchdown to Win" promotion. The unnamed official has been placed in the witness protection program.

For some reason, officials in football and hockey seem to come away unscathed, no matter how bleary their decisions. Where's the fan outrage that has always prevailed in baseball, with crowds yelling "Kill the umpire"? (Not that you should take that literally.)

Will we see more of these "objectionable conduct" calls?  "Ten yards for that smug impression, fella." "Whistling in the huddle? Half the distance to the goal line." "Bad haircut. You're out."

--Slap "Objectionable Conduct" Maxwell.

Friday, July 14, 2017

Cast of Thousands

Investigator Mueller: "So there was another person present at this meeting--a former Soviet intelligence officer?"

D. Jr: "That's right, sir. I kind of forgot about him."

Inv. M: "Any others who might have slipped your mind?"

D. Jr.: "Well, there was a troupe from the Bolshoi Ballet."

Inv. M: "And were they alone?"

D. Jr.: "Not exactly. They were accompanied by the St. Petersburg Philharmonic, and--"

Inv. M: "And?"

D. Jr: "And the Red Army Chorus."

Inv. M: "That's quite a full room."

D. Jr: "Jared said it reminded him of that scene in 'A Night at the Opera.' Paul said, no, it was more like that gag at the Moscow Circus where fifty clowns climb out of a tiny car."

Inv. M: "The Moscow Circus."

D. Jr: "They were there, too. With three dancing bears."

Inv. M: "Is that it? Might there have been anyone else?"

D. Jr.: "Only the ghost of Rasputin. Does that count?"

Thursday, July 13, 2017

The Russian Culinary Collusion

Don, Jr.: "I took the meeting only because she offered me the secret recipe for Beef Stroganoff."

Investigator Mueller: "And you did not communicate this information to your father, aka the President?"

D.Jr.: "No, sir. I had hoped it might be the recipe for Chicken Kiev. We would have loved that."

Mueller: "And that was the extent of the meeting?"

D.Jr.: "Except for a few rounds of Moscow Mules."

Mueller: "Not surprising your memory failed you after that."

D.Jr.: "Glad you understand. Care for some Siberian reindeer jerky?"

Monday, July 10, 2017

Happy Hour at the Kremlin

"President Trump, welcome to my humble worker domain."

"Thanks, Vlad--can I call you Vlad? Y'know, this place could be fixed up swell, I mean I bring my guys in, they do a makeover--it could be the Trump Moscow Tower."


"I mean, the Trump-Putin Tower, of course."

"Mr. Trump, let me offer you some traditional Russian refreshment."

"Well, thanks, Vlad, but as you may know, I don't drink alcohol."

"Oh, is not alcohol. Just a light fruit drink."

"Really? What's it called?"

"Stolichnaya. Here, let me pour you a glass."

"Umm--that's not bad, Vlad. I was feeling a little wrecked after meeting with all those G-20 losers, but this Stolich..what's it called? Whatever it is, I'm feeling better already."

"How nice. Allow me to refill that tumbler."

"Schwell, Vlad. Now maybe we should get down to what I'm here to talk about. Whatever that was. I've got notes here somewhere."

"I believe it was your clever idea to make a deal on selling us back Alaska. Oh look, Don--your glass is empty."

"You're one heck of a hosht, Vlad.  Holy moley, love that Stoly. Hey, howzat for a slogan? Just off the top of my head!"

"Very clever. Sergei, write that down."

"Should I say it again, Mr. Laptop?"

"No need. I have it, in all its wonderfulness."

"Now, Vlad--isn't there something about cyber security we're supposed to dishcush?'

"You know, Don, all that hacking talk is nonsense. How you put it? Fake news. Our only computer interest is in video games. Let's get back to Alaska."

"Don't think I have a hotel there. Not that I remember."

"In that case, perhaps you would agree to return that worthless piece of land to us--for an acceptable price, of course."

"Why not? Always ready to make a deal."

"Suppose we agree on the price your United States paid us, minus a reasonable discount for the advanced age of the property, and decades of wear and tear. I have a contract here. Let me top up your glass while you sign. Sergei, give Mr. Trump a pen."

"There you are, Vlad--done and done."

"Excellent. And now, unfortunately, I must conclude this pleasant meeting. Sergei will help you back to your car. I, meanwhile, will return to a book I am writing."

"Really? What's it called?"

"Thank you for asking. It's 'The Art of the Steal'."

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Sounds of Summer

"Ain't It Awful, the Heat?"

The thermometer says it's time to bring back that Maxwell Anderson-Kurt Weill song from "Street Scene." Or maybe Cole Porter's "Too Darn Hot." Or Duke Ellington's "Harlem Air Shaft."

But here's what we're thinking of:

"The laughter of small children splashing in backyard pools...the tinkle of ice cubes in a glass..the welcome whir of an air conditioner. And the sounds of summer, on CHQM."

A pleasant day to all who remember QM's "Moods of Vancouver," and especially those now working the mike on the Paradise spot on the dial.

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

The Glorious Fourth

Louis Armstrong and George M. Cohan may not actually have been born on the Fourth of July, but, as the newspaper editor in "The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance" dictated, "When the legend becomes fact, print the legend."

It is true, however, that on the Fourth of July, 1826, the fiftieth anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence, two former US Presidents--John Adams and Thomas Jefferson--shuffled off this mortal coil.

This is the day to sing:

"I'm a Yankee Doodle dandy,
Yankee Doodle, do or die,
A real live nephew of my Uncle Sam,
Born on the Fourth of July."

But the song we've been thinking of is the one Henry Gibson, playing a kind of Hank Snow character, sings at the beginning of Robert Altman's "Nashville," set in 1976, the United States' bicentennial:

"We must be doin' something right,
 To last two hundred years."

A Glorious Fourth to all, and especially descendants of Bad Axe, Michigan.

Saturday, July 1, 2017

What else is old?

Okay, Canada is 150 years old, a mere toddler in the zillion-year history of the planet, but still something to celebrate. But, you may ask, what else is there to remember about the year 1867, the year of Confederation? Well, a few things, including these items:

* Russia sold Alaska to the United States (a $7.2 million bargain)

* Mark Twain published "The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County"

* Karl Marx published "Das Kapital"--not as funny as "The Celebrated Jumping Frog"

* Johann Strauss composed "The Blue Danube"

* Joseph Lister developed antiseptics

* Alfred Nobel produced dynamite

* Diamonds were discovered in South Africa

A happy 150th to diamond cutters, blasters, waltzers and jumping frogs.