Wednesday, January 31, 2007

New Reproved Wednesdays

Announcement: This week, we lay to rest the regular special guest Wednesdays. You people are lazy and make me sick. OK, actually I'm lazy and tired. I will be happy to have special special guest posts on upcoming Wednesdays when I hear from someone that they would like to do one, but no more standard special ones. I haven't really decided what features will go in this spot when there are no volunteers, but since, after almost two years, some of you haven't noticed that this site works poorly for tagging, today and future Wednesdays might offer the opportunies for me to scratch those itches you just can't reach on your own. Which is really why I was put here. Just to prove I haven't grown less warm and friendly, that's Al and I in Malibu, California on Sunday at the top, right.

OK, I'm much too fond of Mireille to not respond to her tag and, besides, she probably thought that stuff was perfume when she sniffed it. Here's the 4x4 meme resized to four by four.

Four Jobs I have had:
1. Cowboy.
2. Cook.
3. Construction Worker.
4. Floral Delivery (1984--1985.)
JACK OF ALL TRADES, n. Mistress of many.

Four places I have lived other than where I live now.

1. Northern Nevada.
2. South Chicago.
3. Lone Tree, Iowa.
4. Waleska, Georgia.
GADABOUT, n. A mobile mayor.

Four books I enjoy re-reading.
1. The Short Stories of Edgar Allen Poe.
2. Greek mythology.
3. The Bible.
4. Outer Dark, by Cormac McCarthy.
MYTH, n. Prior knowledge.

Four movies I could watch over and over
1. The Big Sleep.
2. Spartacus.
3. Unforgiven.
4. Shadowlands.
CINEPHILE, n. Viviphobe.

Tuesday, January 30, 2007


Once a warrior gentle of birth,
Then a person of civic worth,
Now a fellow to move our mirth.
Warrior, person, and fellow — no more:
We must knight our dogs to get any lower.
Brave Knights Kennelers then shall be,
Noble Knights of the Golden Flea,
Knights of the Order of St. Steboy,
Knights of St. Gorge and Sir Knights Jawy.
God speed the day when this knighting fad
Shall go to the dogs and the dogs go mad.
2007 Update: A bygone hero who defended the honor of maidens, the safety of the homeland and the ambitions of his faith while wearing a mask and robbed, murdered and debauched in every day clothes.

Monday, January 29, 2007


KANGAROO, n. An unconventional kind of animal which in shape is farther than any other from being the square of its base. It is assisted in jumping by its tail (which makes very good soup) and when it has happened to alight on the surprised Australian it is usually observable that his skin is unbuttoned from the neck downward and he carries his bowels in his arms.

2007 Update: A reverse pachyderm of the southern hemisphere designed to demonstrate the coriolis effect. The kangaroo demonstrates the intelligent hand behind the origin of species, as had it evolved in Kansas rather than Australia, the kangaroo likely would have entered politics rather than pugilism.

A joke heard in central Queensland: A man who had grown up alone in the outback sent to Sydney for a wife. When the woman arrived she found an empty house with furniture placed outside in front. She asked the man why he didn't live in his house and he replied "I put the furniture outside this morning. If you're anything like a kangaroo, I figure we'll need plenty of floorspace."

Saturday, January 27, 2007

Victory's Cave

Episode 4 of The Meditations of Diogenes The Cynic. The voice should sound familiar.

To hear the story, listen for Diogenes to philosophize.

This week, in The Prattler, "Polar Bears."

To read the story, dance with Victory.

Friday, January 26, 2007


RELAXATION, n. Figuring up to-morrow's profits, after you have finished working out to-day's losses.

2007 Update: Idleness earned in a long week of frantic shirking.

Thursday, January 25, 2007


RESPLENDENT, adj. Like a simple American citizen beduking himself in his lodge, or affirming his consequence in the Scheme of Things as an elemental unit of a parade.
The Knights of Dominion were so resplendent in their velvet-and-gold that their masters would hardly have known them.
—"Chronicles of the Classes"
2007 Update: Painted, draped and drawn for maximum substance.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Special Guest Wednesday

This week, my guest is Diane (Feline Frisky.) Diane was asked to define Crafts.

CRAFTS: In the beginning, there was quilting, sewing, embroidery, crochet, weaving and knitting. These were not seen as pass times with free time then, they were skills. These things were taught in order to fill a need.. Once upon a time, girls were automatically taught these skills. Some of your Grandmother’s hand embroidered Tablecloths or Granny Square Quilt would pick up a hefty price on eBay. They are treasures.

As the homemaker became scarce, so did these crafts. These skills and many others, became hobbies when what they would create by hand in weeks, could be processed cheaper and faster by machine. Why spend all that time doing it yourself when you can buy one, just as nice, right now? These crafts faded into memory for the most part.

Thank goodness the older generations remained true to these crafts and kept them alive. A resurgence of the need for these skills eventually reappeared. Some saw the personal value of handmade crafts versus the manufactured, mass produced versions.

I remember my Great Aunt knitting me mittens and crocheting me stuffed animals. My maternal Grandmother knitted and crocheted afgans. My Paternal Grandmother was a seamstress. She sewed most of my clothes growing up. The corduroy dresses with the lace at the collar. She made my Barbie Dolls an huge wardrobe from her scraps. My Mom took up knitting for a while, then settled on embroidery as her passion. I have many beautiful tablecloths in my possession that my Mom crafted herself.

My maternal Grandfather was a wood worker in his free time.

I have dabbled in many, many crafts over the years. I have gotten frustrated and moved on, many times. I am currently deep into hand made greeting cards. I am not alone in this craft. There are at least 7 different recreational groups that participate in this hobby, in my area. One group, that I Chair, is over 70 members strong. We can’t get enough.

Why do I craft? I have time to spare. I am unable to work due to medical disability. I choose to be active through my hobby. Why card crafting? AH, it’s fulfilling for me. It’s simple to do with quick results. You can have a completed project in 15 minutes. No two cards are alike, ever. Most of the time I use rubber stamping as the tool I work with. Most times, these are grouped under paper crafts.

CRAFTS, n. Once a hand skill for making treasures, now kits that are manufactured for your leisure pleasure, a major contributor to our national deficit.

About Diane: Diane is a homemaker who maintains two environments lovingly. The first is a house in which she lives with her husband, Brian and three cats- Tucker, Blessing and Punkin. The second is her husband, in whom she maintains a home for a woman, a little boy and a dog. Diane, aka Feline Frisky fills both environments with things she's made lovingly by hand.

Diane is one of the most prolific bloggers around and shares with TLP and Mireille an affection for Maxine cartoons. The connection can be a little hard to make sometimes. The secret is out to those of us who have read her blog or her comments on other blogs, but Diane is sweet. Not that she's incapable of evil, but she seems it. Her site, Rats Are Yummy is a prodigiously updated invitation to share her thoughts, feelings, laughs, good days, bad days, slow days, holidays, arts and crafts. For those of us for whom creativity, artistic sense and fine motor control are lacking, her card-making is impressive. Some examples are here, here and here with a primer on rubber stamps, here. Her writing is breezy and impish, which either reflects her talent or how much time she spends with cats. I suspect both.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007


RUSTY, adj. The sword of justice.

2007 Update: Corroded from neglect rather than eroded from use.

Monday, January 22, 2007


RECEPTION, n. Fireworks, flags and foolish talk.

2007 Update: A joined celebration of revised misfortune and feigned appreciation at which the ungrateful honor the unworthy in memory, poetry and drink.

Saturday, January 20, 2007

The Spring of Love

Episode 3 of The Meditations of Diogenes The Cynic. Thanks to this week's reader. Anyone recognize the voice?

To hear the story, listen for Pan's pipes.

This week, in The Prattler, The Case Against Torture.

To read the story, step aside from Diogenes' sunlight, alongside Alexander The Great.

Friday, January 19, 2007


MIRACLE, n. An act or event out of the order of nature and unaccountable as beating a normal hand of four kings and an ace with four aces and a king.

2007 Update: An inexplicably salutary result such as a rational explanation.

Thursday, January 18, 2007


MANNA, n. A food miraculously given to the Israelites in the wilderness. When it was no longer supplied to them, they settled down and tilled the soil, fertilizing it, as a rule, with the bodies of the original occupants.

2007 Update: Food as it once fell freely from the skies before it was synthesized in beakers.

From the Supplementary Mischief and Ingratitude Department: Pia was a true friend during my vacation, objecting on my behalf to those scoundrels among you who felt the need to create a fictional vacation for me. No good deed should go unpunished. Click here to help see her thoughtfulness appropriately rewarded.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Return of The Mutha

This week, welcome back Mutha as our guest. Mutha was asked to define Polish.

Polish, adj. From or of Poland.

My Grandfather was born in Poland. My grandmother was born the first American daughter of two Polish parents. And so in this way Polish has always meant half of me.

Polish, n. The polite cultural description (for other, see Polack).

From a young age I also realized that being Polish meant being told jokes. I used to point out that I was Prussian (which is true, in the sense that some relatives lived in the part of the world once known as Prussia and now known as Poland), and did so to somehow save some dignity.

Polish, n. The language native to Poland.

My grandmother and father spoke Polish to one another. I learned very few words and phrases, but when I told Bapcha (Polish for grandma) that I had begun an apprenticeship with a Polish sculptor who was mean to me, she taught me a phrase that she said meant “Leave me alone.” I used it on the sculptor and after looking somewhat surprised he did indeed treat me better. When I told my father the story and the phrase he laughed until he choked. My grandmother (who had run a bar for years and could curse like a sailor) had in fact armed her granddaughter with a phrase that meant SHUT THE (bleep) UP!

Polish, n. sheen, luster, gloss.

v. To shine, buff, scour, brighten.
also spin, work over, reconfigure for the public’s consumption

About Mutha: The half-polish, mostly polished writer, now, of two blogs is also the chaser of two children, judge of their teachers, supporter of their coaches and memorialist of That Girl Mutha's original (as far as I know) blog, She's A Real Mother, keeps us up to date on Mutha, her family, her favorite books, movies, music, quotations. Not to be argumentative, Mutha, but if Lou Reedwere God, don't you think he'd have given himself a singing voice?

Mutha also does a fine imitation of Studs Turkel. Taking the time to notice the people around her, Mutha also from time to time features a series called Who are the people in your neighborhood. This is one of my favoritest features on blogs. Partly because she notices the people in her neighborhood (the houses in mine appear inhabited and sometimes I see featherless bipeds entering and exiting them) and because she takes the time to learn about those people and their jobs. This feature also displays one of Mutha's real virtues as a blogger. A gifted writer, she's also one of the best readers around. It's hard not to admire her community spirit, even for those of us not normally enamored of community.

An exciting new development, since Mutha was last a guest here is the fiction site she's started, Tell Me A Story, Mutha. Mutha is a survivor of National Novel Writing Month, although some of her pride and sense of proportionality were damaged in the battle. She did however write more than 25,000 words of a promising novel and to our benefit, she is continuing to develop her book in "flashes." These can be found on the new site.

Thanks to Mutha for continuing to be a first-rate blogger, reader, writer, observer and friend. Mutha was fictional here once.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007


MAMMALIA, n. A family of vertebrate animals whose females in a state of nature suckle their young, but when civilized and enlightened put them out to nurse, or use the bottle.

2006 Update: The vermouth in a duckbill platypus.

Monday, January 15, 2007


MAJESTY, n. The state and title of a king. Regarded with a just contempt by the Most Eminent Grand Masters, Grand Chancellors, Great Incohonees and Imperial Potentates of the ancient and honorable orders of republican America.

2007 Update: Personal fortune illuminated with collective envy.

Happy Martin Luther King Day. This being a day on, not a day off, your host has struck a mighty blow for the power of the people to overcome googlery some day. This site can now be accessed as Updating links to one of these addresses will enable even the lowliest reader to follow, should this site move to another location. Merci beaucoups, Aleeece.

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Day of The Cynic

Episode 2 of The Meditations of Diogenes The Cynic. Thanks to this week's reader. Anyone recognize the voice?

To hear nothing but lies, ask the serpent.

To read the story, shake hands with Apollo.

This week in The Prattler's new location, "A New Way Forward."

Friday, January 12, 2007


AMATEUR, n. A public nuisance who mistakes taste for skill, and confounds his ambition with his ability.

2007 Update: adj. Undermedicated.

Thursday, January 11, 2007


ARRESTED, p.p. Caught criming without the money to satisfy the policeman.

2006 Update: Delivered from injustice by the ear.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Special Guest Vamp

This week my special guest is, once again, the little blue pill, Jenna Howard. Jenna was asked to define Sparkle.

SPARKLE, v.i. When Doug gave me the word Sparkle I had to sigh. What kind of naughty word is Sparkle? I have a reputation to uphold around here. But then I thought about it and I decided that I could work with this word. Really. Watch me.

According to my handy dandy dictionary widget, Sparkle means "shine brightly with flashes of light". So to make your world sparkly, pick up a flashlight and flash it across your eyes repeatedly and when you look'll see bright flashes of light. Go on...try it. I can wait. Now if you don't have a flashlight you can stare into a light but that's not nearly as much fun.

Moving on...

Sparkle is one of those effervescent words that can be used to describe champagne (sparkling wine), gingerale (Canada Dry is the champagne of ginger ale dontcha know) to my princess crown to disco balls (waaaay before my time) to the Kabuki Guns Burlesque dancers who actually sell sparkly red powder that you can put on your lips so that you to can have the sparkly lips of a burlesque dancer. I nearly bought the kit but I ran out of money so I'll just have to make do with my avatar (I'd tell you how I came to almost buy the lips of a burlesque dancer but...oh blog. Sorry!) to, well, me!!

And really once you reach me in the list of sparkly items you can't top it so...shine on my friends. Shine on.

See...told I could smut up the word sparkle. It's a gift.

About Jenna Howard: Jenna is the author of Afterthoughts, which is back in circulation after a hiatus that lasted, say, a month. She is also the author of several short stories, the titles of which are appropriate for your child in his/her late teens or twenties. Her writing is excellent, but before you read one of her stories you need the maturity to understand that lines like that don't actually work that quickly in real life. You can find out about her books, available for download at a price their characters would understand at Jenna's professional site.

Now, Waking Ambrose is not some tabloid filled with racy content, gossip and scandal but literature, nourishment for a life of the mind. Nonetheless, Jenna is the revered Little Blue Pill and for her sake, this week's guest post includes the following lurid dish of dirt: Jenna Howard may be the most wholesome of us all. She is sweet. She is shy. She takes care of her young nephew and feels better after. Yes, folks, you heard it here first and I'll have photos of her in hot scrabble action to back up my claim if the papparazzi I sent is found alive.

Now, if you're feeling a little disturbed and need to get right, try coffee and some of Jenna's fiction here. Jenna's first guest post is here. She reigned in this story. It takes a heck of a woman to wear my sister's name and Jenna deserves the honor. Thanks, Jenna, for smutting up SPARKLE, and for all the good times. You know what I mean.

So, who's got next?

Tuesday, January 09, 2007


ABHORRENCE, n. One of the degrees of disapproval due to what is imperfectly understood.

2007 Update: A stream of bile beginning in the moral core and ending in the beak, stimulating the tongue and cleansing the memory.

Monday, January 08, 2007


AUSTRALIA, n. A country lying in the South Sea, whose industrial and commercial development has been unspeakably retarded by an unfortunate dispute among geographers as to whether it is a continent or an island.

2006 Update: The eastmost outpost of the West.

If OC mentions New Zealand being east of Australia, someone bat him. New Zealand is the southmost outpost of the North

Saturday, January 06, 2007

The Birth of Philosophy

Introducing The Meditations of Diogenes The Cynic which will run for a while, a short story rather than a long sentence. Diogenes first appeared on this site in this story. Backflips and thanks to this week's reader.

To hear the story, follow the road to Damascus and beware the Fates.

To read the story, tickle Diogenes The Cynic.

I think Prattler will resume next Saturdayish.

Friday, January 05, 2007


BEHAVIOR, n. Conduct, as determined, not by principle, but by breeding. The word seems to be somewhat loosely used in Dr. Holobom's translation of the following lines in the Dies Irae:
Recordare, 'Jesu pie,
Quod sum causa tuae viae.
Ne me perdas illa die.
Pray remember, sacred Savior,
Whose the thoughtless hands that gave your
Death-blow, Pardon such behavior.

2007 Update: Activity, regulated to separate the enlightened modern from brutes, savages, friends and family.

Thursday, January 04, 2007


HISTORIAN, n. A broad-gauge gossip.

2007 Update: Someone who studies passed periods to enlighten earlier eras.

Oh, and Karma posted an ode to, uh, tenderness?

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Special Guest Wednesday

young 2007 This week, please help me welcome my guest, 2007. 2007 was asked to define Prognostication.

PROGNOSTICATION, n. The amalgamation of numbers, statistics, trendlines and theories into a concrete trial balloon. An alchemy transforming dull and unreliable data into sexless, dragon-poor fantasy.
Some say in fire, some offer by ice
That before this year ends, the world will end twice.
Some say in prosperity the next year will find us,
And especially you, if, investing, you mind us.

Some say the nations will die of man's peace
And some predict war if deployments decrease.
Some say the next big thing will be a new number
And the next star musician like last year's but dumber.

But two things are certain and promised eternal,
As we make each new circuit past Apollo infernal:
When winter returns laying this year on it's bier,
The droning of experts and the prating of seers.

old 2007

About 2007: 2007 is a sniveling little infant. Will someone bring me a bottle? I said bring me a bottle!

For the last time, Happy New Year!

How to be a guest on this site: To be anointed, I will need your email address and permission. So, were you to send an email to dpascover at mac dot com and say in the subject line something like "OK, ok I'll do it," that would definitely work unless I thought it was spam and deleted it. On an upcoming Wednesday, after posting that week's guest I would then send you an email with a word not in The Devil's Dictionary which you could then spend the next three days writing a definition for and return to me with a graphic or two of your choosing. The only rules are no profanity, no novels and anything else I make up. If you've done this before, I may ask you again if you're around a lot. If you've done this before and not been heard from since, just let me know that you want to be a guest and then disappear again.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007


BACK-SLIDE, v.t. To join another communion.

2007 Update: To take up in January resolutions written down in December.

Monday, January 01, 2007


VIRTUES, n. pl. Certain abstentions.

2007 Update: Sobriety at dawn, gravity at noon and diligence in the dark of night. The qualities of spirit characterizing a successful thief or a fallen priest.

Rabbit, rabbit. Gorilla, gorilla. Happy New Year.