Tag Archives: politics

Nosey Nelida Meets Someone ©

Longtime readers of this column will remember that Nosey Nelida Macamora received an invitation to the White House. Nelida owned a business on a rather downtrodden strip mall. She lived in back of her shop. One day she saw suspicious activity at a business on the other end of the parking lot. Nelida, who had been known as “Nosey Nelida” since third grade, called the government hotline and told the operator what she’d seen.

The operator, who was aware of a government “sting” operation to catch drug dealers, put Nelida’s call through to someone who, upon hearing Nelida’s story, put her through to the White House. A staff member congratulated her and invited her to Washington, D.C. to receive a citizen’s citation. Nelida met the President and told him she was going to remain alert. After she’d left, the President told his staff, “Keep an eye on her.”

While Nelida was in Washington, D.C., the government executed the sting operation and grabbed up the drug dealers. The raid was kept out of the mass media, so on her return Nelida assumed that good had triumphed over evil and went on with her life.

A few weeks later someone opened a shop a few doors down from Nelida’s. His name was Guy Winterton. Guy was a bachelor and was a couple of years older than Nelida. A few days after Guy opened his shop, Nelida came to the front door. She was carrying a paper sack with handles.

“I’m Nelida, I have the shop next door,” she said. “I hope you like homemade strawberry jam.”

“Homemade strawberry jam is my favorite,” said Guy. “Please come in.” Nelida stepped in to Guy’s shop and, being Nelida, looked carefully around. Guy stocked a variety of gadgets and gizmos for people who were good with their hands. He had pocketknives, sandpaper, screwdrivers, hammers, mallets, small sanding machines, and the like.

“I noticed the other day that you don’t have any merchandise on the top shelf of your shop,” Guy said.

I’m too short to reach the top shelf,” said Nelida.

“Maybe I can help out with that,” said Guy.

A few days later Guy walked in carrying what looked like a long wooden stick. There was a metal doo-dad—a kind of holder—on the end of the stick. Guy walked to one of Nelida’s shelves and picked up a quart of jam. He fitted the jar carefully in to the metal. The holder grasped the jam jar firmly but safely. Guy picked up the pole, swung it upright, and deposited the jar on the top shelf. He twisted the metal handle at the bottom of the pole and released the jam. It sat snugly and safely on the top shelf.

“I’ll put some more bottles up on the shelf. When you want them, just reach up and grasp them with this gadget,” said Guy.

“Here, you try it, it’s really easy once you catch on.”

Nelida, with some hesitancy, picked up the gadget. Guy helped her secure a bottle of jam in the claw. Then he assisted while she swung the jar up to the top shelf.

“Now just place it lightly on the shelf and twist the release handle,” said Guy.

When the jar was safely on the shelf, Nelida smiled. “Wow,” she said. “it worked.”

“Good job,” said Guy. “Try another one.”

After that, Nelida and Guy became close. Sometimes she fixed dinner, sometimes he did. They liked the same television shows.

One day Guy said, “Nelida, there’s a wall between us.”

“What wall?”

“The wall between our two apartments,” said Guy. “I’m good with my hands.”

Dr. Larry day is a retired J-School professor turned humor writer. His book, Day Dreaming: Tales From the Fourth Dementia is available for purchase via his website: http://www.daydreaming.co

Tagged , , , , , ,

Ribby Falls in Love ©

       Long time readers of this column will remember Ribby Von Simeon. More recent readers probably won’t be acquainted with Ribby, so here’s a brief introduction.

Ribby Von Simeon is the son of internationally renowned movie star Sippa Margarita and Balderdash Von Simeon, the news and entertainment magnate.

Ruthless Von Simeon, Ribby’s grandfather, was a Western mining tycoon. Between them they acquired a heap of money.

Miss Margarita’s media profile says she was born in Valencia. Her public  relations packets contain photos of her in and around Valencia, Spain.  Reality insists that Josipa Margarita Ruiz was born and raised in Valencia, Kansas.  The couple had one son, Ruthless Ignacio Balderdash San Bernardino Cortez Ruiz Von Simeon, known all his life as Ribby.

Ribby Von Simeon was raised by his Latino grandparents in Kansas.  It was all his mother could do to handle her fast-paced movie career.  Ribby’s one enduring childhood memory of his mother was of a voyage they took. He flew to Europe and together he and Sippa sailed back on an ocean liner.

The voyage was bittersweet for Ribby.  He had his mother all to himself. But he was seasick from the moment he stepped on board until the ship docked. He spent the whole voyage in bed being tenderly cared for—this to her credit—by his mother.  She brought him broth and hard rolls and read to him.

Ribby didin’t come into his inheritance until he was in his thirties. By that time he was living simply but comfortably as an adjunct professor at Letongaloosa Community Junior College.  The news that he had inherited a pile of money came at the same time news reports said that the luxury liner Santa Maria de la Valencia  on which he and his mother had sailed the Atlantic had been decommissioned and would be sold for scrap.

The thought of that dearly remembered vessel ending up as scrap iron infuriated Ribby. That fury transformed him from a diffident and taciturn academic into a man as rapacious as his grandpa Ruthless Von Simeon and as vociferous and belligerent as his father Balderdash Von Simeon.

Ribby used his resources to attack the astonished lawyers, financial conservators, bureaucrats, politicians and shipping company executives. When it was over, Ribby owned the ship and had permission to do anything he wanted with it.  He had the ship carefully dismantled and transported piece by piece to Kansas. Then Ribby had the ship reconstituted, refurbished and moored  at the top of a hill on a large tract of land he owned a few miles outside Letongaloosa.

After the re-commissioning of the Santa Maria, Ribby dropped back into academic anonymity until 10 years later when another crisis arose.

Newly elected county officials were young and eager to raise tax revenue. They changed zoning regulations. Ribby’s property became part of an urban renewal project. The officials knew little about Ribby except that despite being a lowly professor at LCJC, he owned the land and the ship. They ordered him to dismantle and remove the vessel at his own expense.

That order transformed mild-mannered Sippy Von Simeon into an amalgam of his forebears Ruthles and Balderdash.  Within hours highly placed officials were threatening to strip the county of federal funding, bankers had cancelled favorable interest rates.  Bureaucrats, politicians and diplomats denounced the county officials and demanded that they cancel the project or leave Ribby’s land out of it. The county capitulated.

About that time Angie Appleton, a pert thirty-year-old who had focused her life and energy on her academic career, joined the LJCC faculty. Ribby fell for her the moment he saw her across the room at the first faculty meeting of the semester.

A first Angie ignored him. Then she was curious. Then intrigued.

For his part, Ribby was, at first his shy, taciturn self. But love is powerful. After an agonizing few days of despair, Love awakened Ribby’s Balderdash qualities—appropriately softened for the occasion—and LOVE won out.

Angie and Ribby snuck away and got married, went on a honeymoon, came back to Letongaloosa and settled down—more or less.

-30-

Dr. Larry day is a retired J-School professor turned humor writer. His book, Day Dreaming: Tales From the Fourth Dementia is available for purchase via his website: http://www.daydreaming.co

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Why Do Old People Like Reading the Obituaries? ©

Duh!  Because we’re OLD.   After one reads the wonderful news of the world and all about  DT and his antics and the antics of the  people state and federal legislatures, and the “foreclosures” and you find that you are not among the foreclosures or among the “police blotter” names,  Well, HELLO!  It’s a JOY to read the obituaries.

Dr. Larry day is a retired J-School professor turned humor writer. His book, Day Dreaming: Tales From the Fourth Dementia is available for purchase via his website: http://www.daydreaming.co

Tagged , , , , , , , ,

I Wonder…

I wonder about TV news. As a newspaper journalist I covered the Falkland Island conflict in 1983. I remember seeing a fledging CNN news channel correspondent doing a stand-up report. He didn’t mention Donald Trump once.

Dr. Larry day is a retired J-School professor turned humor writer. His book, Day Dreaming: Tales From the Fourth Dementia is available for purchase via his website: http://www.daydreaming.co

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Pat & Pete Meet the President ©

 

When Pete and Pat took separate vacations last year, they had no idea they’d end up becoming a family of six—with four adopted kids.   And they certainly didn’t expect to visit the White House or that Pat would prepare lunch for the President.

Patrocina Megamecheldorf Zamborvich Jones and Pedro Salazar Remirez Sandoval Montoya y Montoya are known around town, for obvious reasons, simply as Pat and Pete. The two came to Letongaloosa years ago and became a couple after having been business rivals.  They got married, and, last year, adopted four children—a girl and boy from Korea and a boy and girl from Colombia.

Back before they become a couple, Pat wanted to buy the old Peabody home from the city and turn it into a pre-school. Pete wanted to make the place a pawn shop. After a notable public debate at city hall they ended up joining forces and sharing the facility. Together they created a unique business: Pat and Pete’s Pre-school and Pawn Shop.

Pat and Pete took separate vacations because the business associations to which they belonged had scheduled annual conventions at the very same time, but on different continents. Pete and Pat kissed each other at the airport and went their separate ways.

As the result of a mix-up Pete found himself in an orphanage in Seoul. Meantime Pat visited an orphanage in Cartagena. Pete met Min-ji, age eight, and her brother Hae-jin, six, and came home eager to adopt them both.   Pat fell in love with Hernando, age eight, and Maria, six, in Cartagena and hurried home with adoption on her mind.

The logistics of a four-child, two-country adoption process were daunting, but Pat and Pete kept their cool and just ploughed ahead. They got help from unexpected sources. In Washington, a Congresswoman helped smooth the way with the U.S. State Department. A Korean American businessman helped with the government in Seoul. Two adoption attorneys took the case pro bono. The couples’ professional organizations paid transportation costs for all the trips Pat and Pete had to make. A national hotel group gave them free meals and lodging in Cartagena and Seoul.

Back in Letongaloosa, Pat and Pete adjusted amazingly well to the shock of going from being just a married couple to being the parents of four lively pre-teens.

For their part, all the kids proved to be adaptable, resourceful and very bright.

 

They settled down to a quiet home and school life, and in less than a year, the Koreans were speaking Spanish, the Colombians were speaking Korean, and all four kids were speaking English without an accent.

The way things are in quiet little Letongaloosa, life for Pat and Pete and their four children might have flowed along unremarkably. But then a reporter for the local newspaper, the Argosy Herald Tribune Challenger Dispatch, found out about the family and decided to write a feature story about them. Because cross cultural news was “in” with the mass media at that time, her story was picked up by the wire services. The next thing they knew, Pete and Pat and the kids were invited to the White House for a visit.

In the Oval Office the children were introduced to the President. They had been well briefed, and they all got through the “I’m pleased to meet you Mr. President,” part just fine. Then out of the blue:

“Are we staying for lunch?” asked Hae-jin, now seven.

The President didn’t miss a beat. “What’s your favorite food?” he asked.

“My Mom makes the best caldo de camarones in the world,” said Hae-jin.

“Her veprova pecene, is better,” piped in Maria, also now seven.

Flustered and embarrassed, Pat opened her mouth to apologize.

But the President smiled and turned to his chief of staff. “Clark, please put Mrs. Montoya y Montoya-Zamborovich Jones in touch with the White House chef. We’re having homemade caldo de camarones and veprova pecene for lunch tomorrow.”

-30-

 

Dr. Larry day is a retired J-School professor turned humor writer. His book, Day Dreaming: Tales From the Fourth Dementia is available for purchase via his website: http://www.daydreaming.co

            

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , ,