Gun Carrying Permits Reach Record Highs in the Midwest

One in twenty Minnesotans carries now a gun;

and 19 in 100 of ’em just might be a nun.

Sherburne County has the most permits to carry arms,

which just might cause her neighbor counties many false alarms.

Permits last for five years and they cost a hundred bucks.

(Unless you only want one for the shooting of some ducks.)

Carrying a firearm is getting normal quicker,

as the country fills with crooks more brutal and more sicker.

O, how I wish for those sweet days, before the world went south,

when the only thing a man would shoot off was his mouth! 

from a story in the Minneapolis Star Tribune


Coca-Cola Says It’s Close to Water Replenishment Goal


Faceless corporations are just people, too, Mitt said.

So maybe they will do some good instead of causing dread.

I don’t know what to make of Coca-Cola’s lofty plot,

recycling their water for the farmer and the yacht.

But this much I can tell you; if it’s beneficent, pal,

the media will try to find a fiendish rationale!  

from an article in the New York Times

coca cola

I’ve set my thermostat on high

I’ve set my thermostat on high, but tepid stays my core;

my ventilated preaching is lukewarm, and nothing more.

I am afraid to ask for help from Him that knows my pipes —

imagining He will require suffering and stripes.

Why do I fear the Master of Mechanics and His tools?

He only can repair the damage done by chance and fools!

Each day I place a call for maintenance, but when He comes

I cannot bring myself to ask for more than mundane crumbs.

Yet well I know that if and when I offer invitation

He will build me up unto celestial elevation.

Josh Groban

Celebrities are all alike; so goes the common saying.

Selfish, egotistical, and from good manners straying.

Josh Groban, on the other hand, seems not to know this notion;

he often gives a concert for a charity promotion.

If only Hollywood produced more stars like him, we’d be

more inclined to watch them in a film or on TV!  


What the Hell is the Dow Jones Average, and Why Should I Care?

The Wall Street Journal headline screamed at me from my laptop: U.S. Stock Plunge Picks Up Speed!

The subheading was even worse: Ugly week ends with worst day for the Dow and other indexes in years.

The New York Times also used the dreaded P-word in its ominous headline: Stocks Plunge Sharply for a Second Day on Wall Street.

The article attached to this fear-mongering headline gives us the somber details: “Such concerns on Friday helped push stocks far below the peaks they reached just weeks ago when investors were ebullient. The Dow Jones industrial average is more than 10 percent below the high it reached in May. At Friday’s close, the index was down 530.94 points, to 16,459.75, a loss of 3.1 percent on the day.”

CNBC does not help matters any with their headline: Dow, Nasdaq plunge 3% into correction.

Okay. I get it. The stock market is all screwed up. Again.

But will somebody please tell me just exactly what the hell is the Dow Jones industrial average? Or Nasdaq?  I’ve been hearing about them ever since I was a child in Huggies, and nobody has ever taken the trouble to tell me what this stuff is. Or why I should care about it.

It’s like Mark Twain’s old adage about the weather: Everybody talks about it, but nobody does anything to explain it.

Naturally enough, I have Googled the Dow Jones, and this is what I got: “The Dow Jones Industrial Average is a price-weighted average of 30 significant stocks traded on the New York Stock Exchange and the Nasdaq. The DJIA was invented by Charles Dow back in 1896.”

Clear as sludge.

But I will admit I did find out what Nasdaq means:  National Association of Securities Dealers Automated Quotations.

My pappy done told me to never trust an acronym with more than three letters in it.

I get the feeling that “Dow Jones” and “Nasdaq” are not meant to be understood by the layman; they are meant to overawe us, like sawing a woman in half. The wizards of Wall Street can make money disappear like Houdini, that’s for sure.

The whole schmegegge is moot for me anyways, since I sold the last of my stock holdings years ago and invested in an anchovy farm — making me independently destitute.

When Nasdaq droops and Dow Jones dips

I know I’ll not be in the chips.

My broker won’t return my calls

and moves his office to Sioux Falls.

Take my advice when you invest,

and learn to live on lemon zest. 


Thoughts the Night Before My Daughter has Induced Labor

You’re still my baby girl, you know; I did not give permission

for you to grow to motherhood — you never did audition!

One day a married woman, with the tumult that implies;

now a mother waiting for God’s greatest good surprise.

O, the wounded patience and the weary love you’ll bear!

Angels! So attend her sacrifice like Christ was there.

angels attending mother and child


One Summer Eve

One summer eve I sat upon the top step of my porch;

the kids were gathered round me — it was hotter than a torch.

The grateful cooling breezes were as yet not come to play,

and it had been a long and dusty, weary kind of day.

I moved down from the top step to the next one, on a whim.

The kids moved down a step as well, all serious and prim.

Out of curiosity I yet again descended;

down they came as if it were a kind of game so splendid.

We went inside for dinner, then, while mother’s food was hot;

The episode a cipher in the day, and soon forgot . . .

But now the evening finds me on the porch in silence sown;

all the kids are wafted far away, and I’m alone.

The steps are there in front of me, and heavily I drop.

God forgive me for not staying always on the top . . .

porch step


What was fake on the internet this week

Pinnochio could not have used the internet at all,

otherwise his nose around the planet sure would crawl.

If you these stories swallowed for the truth, I pity you;

you’re gullible enough to think the sky is painted blue.

The Dow Jones fell so far because Obama has a cold.

Ted Cruz is cleaning closets so he’ll find someone to scold.

Huggies comes with Windex, cuz they are made out of glass.

A football player’s girlfriend beat to death his ugly ass.

Harold Stassen still is running for the White House goal.

Danny’s not a hurricane, it’s just a wet black hole.

Jared Fogle married super model Niki Taylor.

Jon Stewart joined the Navy and is working as a sailor.

Carrie Underwood is pimping now for Big Tobacco.

They’re handing out free iPhones in the Polish city Cracow.

They’ve hacked into The Cloud and all the data, without cause,

has gone up to the North Pole for the use of Santa Claus.

Vodka has been found to cure the hiccups when inhaled.

On a charge of tax evasion Bill Gates has been jailed.

That’s all the news that wasn’t news this week — hope you enjoyed it.

You can bet your bottom dollar Rush Limbaugh has employed it. 

The Renminbi

My dad was a bartender back in the era of open-handed, two-fisted drinkers. A man was known back then for how he held his liquor, and my dad was right there next to him to see how he could hold his money.

Consequently, the pater toddled home late at night with his pockets bulging with Eisenhower silver dollar tips — the coin of the realm for the devoted drunkard.

All those lovely silver dollars are long gone, of course; my mother used them to buy groceries and pay off the mortgage.

Reading the New York Times lately, I wish mom had held on to some of those shiny disks. We might be gazillionaires by now, considering how China is monkeying with their currency, and, in consequence, with the world economy:

The renminbi has plummeted beyond the hope of man.

The baht has followed suit and now is hardly worth rice bran.

The dollar remains active, like an elephant in must,

but the loonie is a laggard and is trailing in the dust.

The yen maintains composure in the face of Armeggedon.

But what the franc is doing would the face of Bill Gates redden.

The peso and the krona waver like a storm-lashed sea.

Rubles are so rotten they are being passed out free.

Nobody knows just what’s become of India’s slick rupee.

(Many economists think it’s out there, making whoopee!)

The won is so inflated that it passes for the euro.

The lira is a stench that would make sick the meanest burro.

And bitcoin, that emoticon of sly financial dealing,

continues to give cover for some monumental stealing.

So put your ready cash in krugerrands and silver eagles —

ev’ry other currency is going to the beagles.

Hark, the steam calliope

Hark, the steam calliope — so raucous and off-key —

promises a fine respite and taste of revelry.

See the man in candy stripe upon the swaying stage;

he tells of marvels for the youth and tonic for old age.

Spun sugar webs and roasted flesh await the hungry crowd;

in that dark and swirling den — no second thoughts allowed!

Painted faces grin an invitation to relax;

resolutions made with faith begin to melt like wax.

The price is small to start with — it’s affordable, no doubt.

(But wait until you have to pay a RANSOM to get out.)

Next morning all the mountebanks and acrobats are gone.

The victims left behind now face a panic-stricken dawn.

Their tinsel crowns and kewpie dolls are lurid toys that mock

all  their former probity and smug religious talk.

How can this tawdry carnival keep going at such cost?

Can’t the operators into jail be roughly tossed?

Alas, the operators of this fraud, it’s very clear,

are you and me whenever from the truth we start to veer!