Monthly Archives: October 2018

Know your audience

This happened many years ago. All the kids in my family were grown but we still congregated with our relatives at out-of-state family reunions. One year the big reunion on our mother’s side had been held at a park but in the evening the group continued the festivities at one of my cousin’s homes. People had begun telling jokes. My brother, in an animated fashion, told a detailed, moderately racy joke that was greeted with much laughter after its punchline.


My sister, on the other hand, told a short joke:

“Why is American beer like having sex in a canoe?”
“Because it’s fucking close to water.”

This joke didn’t go over quite so well. Perhaps because my sister had failed to think about the fact that we were literally in a town that made an American beer, one much beloved by the locals.


For the child who wants to stand out

I occasionally see a little girl who wears a large red plastic cup on her head. It is attached to some kind of elastic to keep it securely in place.

I’d guess her to be about 10 now, so she’d have been around 9 when I first saw her last year and the sight about stopped me in my tracks. It was just so inexplicable. What did it mean??

I admit to feeling vaguely annoyed by the plastic cup on her head in ways I can’t exactly articulate. On the other hand one has to at least somewhat admire her originality. Not a lot of people could walk around with a plastic cup on their head, at a jaunty angle no less, as if it was nothing. I can’t help but wonder though, if she associates the red plastic cup, as I do, with parties, kegs, and beer. I’m guessing not.

For kicks I googled “wearing a red plastic cup on your head” to see if I was missing something. It turned up nothing relevant but reminded me said cups are Solo® cups, which I’d forgotten.

As a child who was so desperate to wear earrings, I once fished round, gold plated curtain hooks out of the family junk drawer and fashioned them into jewelry, I can’t exactly cast too much aspersion on the cup-wearing child. That said, I’m fairly sure I never left the house sporting my curtain-hooks-as-earrings in public. Of course the day will come when this girl will no longer wear her red plastic cup out either. Since I don’t know her I wonder if she’ll continue her non-conformist fashion ways or will she become self-conscious and choose more mainstream accessories. I also wonder how she will look back on her head cup when she is older.

Short Thought 218

I am out of the business of predicting anyone’s response to a given situation, gesture, gift, letter, action, calamity, news, email, or message. I have been wrong too many times when I thought I knew how someone would react. I’ve been wrong when I’ve expected positive responses and wrong when I predicted negative responses. I fancy myself quite perceptive but on this, perception doesn’t seem to help me much. Now I think it’s a better policy to take a wait-and-see approach. It’s okay if I want a certain response but I am better off if I don’t decide I already know what it will be.

Somebody needs spell check

This past June I posted a photo of the sign in front of the local elementary school. School is back in session and I noticed the current sign. It’s spelled that way on both sides of the sign so it wasn’t an oversight. I’m thinking maybe prior to sticking the letters up there somebody needs to type up the text in a word processing program with a spell check. Hell I’d come around and proof it for ’em.