Category Archives: Cartoons

Quotes of [Early In] the Week


Borrowed from a note to Garrison Keillor:

Rows and flows of loosened hair
And vomit on the second stair
And catnip mousies everywhere
I’ve looked at cats that way

But then they lie and soak the sun
They purr and mew at everyone
They snuggle when the day is done
But cats get in the way

I’ve looked at cats from both sides now
Their heads, their butts and still somehow
Despite the things that I recall,
I really don’t know cats at all

Karen Rouda


We are all here on earth to help others; what on earth the others are here for I don’t know. — W. H. Auden






After a lengthy, difficult committee session, a 76-year-old Quaker is sipping his drink in a coffee bar. Suddenly, a gorgeous young woman enters and sits down a few seats away. The girl is so attractive he can’t keep his eyes off her.

The young woman approaches the old man, looks him deep in the eyes, and says to him in a sultry tone: “I’ll do anything you’d like. Anything you can imagine in your wildest dreams. It doesn’t matter how extreme or unusual it is; I’m game. I want $200, and there’s another condition.”

The man asks what the condition is.

“You have to tell me what you want me to do in just three words.”

The man takes a moment to consider the offer from the beautiful woman. He then whips out his wallet and puts twenty $10 bills in her outstretched hand.

He then looks her square in the eyes and says slowly and clearly:

“Paint our meetinghouse.”

Our needs change as we get older. Never underestimate how old Quakers can get things done.




Geography of the Heart

Teacher: Obadiah, can thee tell us where the Canadian border is?

Obadiah: Sure. He’s walking in the park with my older sister
Rebecca, and mother doesn’t trust his intentions one bit.

The Truth In Chains

A newly-installed governor of Pennsylvania made a quiet visit to a state prison, and spoke to inmates. One prisoner after another swore they were innocent and had been wrongly convicted.

Then he asked the last prisoner, “So, are you innocent too?”

But the youth replied, “No, Friend. I did wrong, stole some money, and was properly tried and sentenced.”

“You admit the crime?” the governor asked.

“Yes, Friend.”

The governor whipped out his pen and immediately signed a
pardon. “Get this crook out of here!” he roared at the guards.

The other prisoners started complaining loudly.”Hey!” was the common cry, “how can you let this confessed crook go, while we’re all stuck in here?“

The governor shrugged.

“Well,” he said, “I was afraid that evil guy would corrupt all you innocent lambs.”

Truth & Consequences

An old-fashioned Quaker minister lined up all his five gray-clad sons and stood in front of them. “Young Friends,” he said in a carefully-controlled voice, “who pushed the privy into the creek?”
No one answered.
The patriarch repeated the question, and was again met with a guarded silence.
“All right,” he said, “did I ever tell you the story of George
Washington and his father? George chopped down his father’s cherry tree, but he told the truth about it, and wasn’t punished. And they weren’t even Friends.”
Then he asked again, “Who pushed the privy over the cliff?”
To which the two youngest sons sheepishly admitted, “Father, we cannot tell a lie, we did it.”
Whereupon their father retrieved a short length of birch and administered them some physical eldering on the hinder parts.
When he was done, the two boys, rubbing their sore posteriors, asked, “Father, thee said that when George Washington told the truth, he
wasn’t punished. But we told the truth, and we got punished. How come, Father?”
Their father replied, “There’s a difference, young man.
Washington’s father was not IN the cherry tree when George chopped it down.”






How I became a successful Writer & an Independent Publisher (The short version) Part 1 of 3 Parts

In mid-1974, my third trade book [“trade” means produced by a traditional publisher], Selma 1965, came out from Charles Scribner’s Sons.

Scribner’s had published Hemingway, Edith Wharton, Fitzgerald, Vonnegut, Stephen King, and lots more bigtime writers – and now, me. Continue reading How I became a successful Writer & an Independent Publisher (The short version) Part 1 of 3 Parts

This is NOT a Day for Schadenfreude!

Who am I kidding?

There’s an old Zen koan, that goes like this:

”Before enlightenment, chop wood, carry water.

After enlightenment, chop wood, carry water.”

Substitute “indictment” for “enlightenment”, and it might be the most proper motto for today:

As I write, the sun is coming up, just as it always has.

A neighbor is warming up his big pickup, as usual, before heading out to work.

The cat is mewing to be fed.

A credit card bill, open on the table, still needs to be paid.

And the New York City District attorney issued an indictment for falsifying business records, just as he is reliably reported to have done more than a hundred times since his re-election.

Which makes it time to celebrate. (I don’t usually chop wood here, enlightened or not; but I’ll carry some water later.)

The party was on before I got “woke” yesterday, this time from an actual afternoon nap. The Queens Daily Eagle gets the blue ribbon for the best headline:

And who could surpass the barbed sweetness of spirit that A. A. Milne brings?

Already, HRC, in her finest Methodist drab, is planning a mission of mercy . . .

Which reminds me, over at Rikers, 45’s bean counter Allen Weisselberg is already busy as his advance man.

They’re especially concerned about an inmate down the cellblock hallway, Dave Somebody. He’s doing a long stretch for reading “Mockingbird” to fifth graders, and now refuses to wear clothes.

Due to staff shortages, they’ve had to call in reinforcements, and the effort has been dogged by artistic differences:

The New York Story-reading Brunch look wowed some critics, but there were dissenters.

Personally I thought the hair was okay, but the gown —well, it showed a bit more leg than necessary.  Tho for Pete’s sake, the ensemble wasn’t so problematic that it justified calling in Bernie . . .

But look, count on a cranky independent Vermonter to skip the glam, stay warm, and get the job done.

And if that’s not enough to keep up 45’s morale, there’s always the chaplain, direct from the Greater Queens MAGA Tabernacle, who visits regularly, bringing messages from his old pal JC . . .

“No, Donald, there’s no ‘e’ — it’s spelled ‘p-A-r-d-o-n’. That’s better.”

Yes, like He said in his book, we must all enter the Kingdom like little children, or maybe undocumented migrants, so he’ll bring 45’s own special version, which goes something like this. . .

What more could I hope to add?

Maybe that, after breakfast, perhaps I’ll go out and chop some wood.