Saturday, June 30, 2007

A Bad Sign

Episode 26 of The Meditations of Diogenes The Cynic. Thanks to the Blochalela Foundation for sponsoring this week's reading.

To hear the story, ignore Cassandra

This week in The Prattler, "The Romney Inaugural."

The story can be read from the cliff.

Conversion of the original file added a whine. The original recording is below:
Episode 26 of The Meditations of Diogenes The Cynic, read by Weirsdo.

Friday, June 29, 2007


PUN, n. A form of wit, to which wise men stoop and fools aspire.

2007 Update: Wit's Elba.


Thursday, June 28, 2007


PHRENOLOGY, n. The science of picking the pocket through the scalp. It consists of locating and exploiting the organ that one is a dupe with.

2007 Update: A disproved theory of the human mind which held that abilities, neuroses and tendencies can be determined by inquiry of the patient's skull instead of the insurance company.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Homeland Security

A long voyage must begin
With a single stride,
A hope, maybe some kind of plan
Bubbling up inside.

But what a trip must never be
If it's to live in memory
Is traveled in security
And every culture's myths agree
It is motion that makes a voyage tick
And danger that makes it epic.

In line under protection of the TSA,
If you're like me, you typically
Pray for death anyway.

RUSH, v.i. To stop and smell the roses by the bouquet.
(pictured, top right: Tali/Sofia, Al, Kenny, Sar, G/Xenou, Chocorekha, and Pia. Bobo and Puppybrose were there but sensitive about their cloven hooves. At left: Still Life!)

Tuesday, June 26, 2007


PERDITION, n. The loss of one's soul; also the place in which it may be found.

2007 Update: 1. The condemnation delivered upon sinners by a just and wrathful believer, usually under the breath or behind the back which is how we can tell it's a spiritual and religious rebuke.
2. A lengthy sermon.

Monday, June 25, 2007


PREDESTINATION, n. The doctrine that all things occur according to programme. This doctrine should not be confused with that of foreordination, which means that all things are programmed, but does not affirm their occurrence, that being only an implication from other doctrines by which this is entailed. The difference is great enough to have deluged Christendom with ink, to say nothing of the gore. With the distinction of the two doctrines kept well in mind, and a reverent belief in both, one may hope to escape perdition if spared.

2007 Update: The inevitable conclusion of hindsight.

Resquiat In Muridae, friend Chatham.

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Outside The Walls

Episode 25 of The Meditations of Diogenes The Cynic. Thanks to this week's reader.

To hear the story, listen to two old babylonians.

This week in The Prattler, "The Reincarnation of Jerry Tarkanian."

You can read the story along the wall.

Friday, June 22, 2007


HISTORY, n. An account mostly false, of evemts mostly unimportant, which are brought about by rulers mostly knaves and soldiers mostly fools.

Of Roman history great Nienuhr's shown
'Tis nine-tenths lying. Faith, I wish 'twere known,
Ere we accept freat Niebuhr as a guide,
Wherein he blundered and how much he lied.
-Sader Bupp

2007 Update: The accomplishments of drunken actors as explained by sober scholars.

To my New York City telephagists: The tide of mankind doth rise. We who were once so few are now so many that we had to switch restaurants. The new joint is called Southwest New York and is at 2 World Financial Center. Al's horsie rides will go on as before. See you at 1.

Thursday, June 21, 2007


HYGEIA, n. In Grecian mythology the goddess of health- the only one of the goddesses whom it was healthy to have anything to do with.

2007 Update: The ancient and mythic forbear of Perfumora, Vesuvia and Deodorantia.

Happy birthday, Mireille. Now we know why summer is warm.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

The Fall

The mountain from which Henry fell
Was three miles high. Four from hell.
But the spot from which he left the side
Was merely inches from the tide.
Nonetheless before he made contact
He pictured headlines on the rack
And finally was not disappointed,
For Henry had been news-anointed.
The Wall Street Journal and CNN,
The London Times and countless pens
on countless blogs with pseudonyms,
And countless priests in between hymns
Devoted endless lamentation
To Henry's airborn pirouation.
Every eye to which some sight remains
Saw proof of his unmortal pain
In featured shots of his scraped knee
Captioned "The Erosion of Celebrity."

NEWS, n. pl and sing. Formal information formatted for the infernally uninformed.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007


HONEST, adj. Afflicted with an impediment in his dealing.

2007 Update:: Having lies on the lips, kool-aid on the tongue, rhetoric in mind and a frog in the throat. Clearly marked as fiction.

Monday, June 18, 2007


HUG, v. very a. To-to- What the devil does it mean, anyhow?

2007 Update: To shackle with bonds of affection while the bands of irons reach welding temperature.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

A Persian Chat

Episode 24 of The Meditations of Diogenes The Cynic. New York area friends see below for an announcement.

To hear the story, listen to two old babylonians.

This week in The Prattler, "A Defense of Bad Legislation."

You can read the story along the wall.

OK, so the announcement: On Saturday, June 23, a week from today at 1PM, God willing and the creek don't rise, I'll be sitting down to lunch at Centrico restaurant at 211 W. Broadway in Tribeca. You're invited to join me. Feel free to show up at the last minute but if you think you'll come and can email me by Wednesday it will help with making a reservation. After lunch, Al will be leading a walking tour and giving "horsey rides" to your children, pets and spouses. See you there.

Friday, June 15, 2007


GRASS, n. All Flesh.

Two monks upon a field of battle
Observed some lean and hungry cattle.
Said one: "But little feed is growing
Where Death so lately has been mowing."
Replied the other, gravely eyeing
The piles of dead about the lying:
"All flesh is grass- I'm quite confounded
That cows should starve by hay surrounded."

2007 Update: The beneficiary of human endeavor and the meditations of deer.

To tall grass, the zebra comes to flourish
And find comfort, kin, counsel and nourish
Where the lion seeks her camouflage,
Contemplation and catered homage.
As to which animal is the wiser:
The grass knows each to make smart fertilizer.
-Saint Augustine of Abyssinia

Thursday, June 14, 2007


GOVERNMENT, n. A modern Chronos who devours his own children. The priesthood are charged with the duty of preparing them for his tooth.

2007 Update: The social skyship, the canvas of which is liberty stitched together with the thread of our collective will to interfere, inflated with the aspirations of all and designed to carry a small party without a map.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

A Fable

The Mirror Mogul

Once upon a time, an industrialist lived in a mansion, high above town. In his mansion there were angled mirrors covering each wall and the ceiling so that wherever he went in his home, he appeared everywhere and wherever he looked he saw himself many times. One day he entered a rarely used room and noticed one Mirror was broken. Soon, all the countless reflections of him throughout the house were cursing silently but the man could not scold them for he had cursed first.

Moral: One must be scrupulous about behavior when in the public eye.

BROADCAST, v.i. To talk to yourself en masse.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007


GLOOM, n. The mental condition produced by a minstrel, the funny column of a newspaper, a hope in heaven and a devil's dictionary.

2007 Update: The taciturn state preceding disappointment.

Monday, June 11, 2007


GENERALLY, adv. Usually, ordinarily, as Men generally lie, A woman is generally treacherous, etc.

2007 Update: Anecdotally, hypothetically, with no direct experience whatsoever of.

Saturday, June 09, 2007

The Roots of Truth

Episode 23 of The Meditations of Diogenes The Cynic. Thanks to the Washington Area Historical Organization for Ornamental Stilettos (WAHOOS) for this week's reading

To hear the story, grab a munchkin.

This week in The Prattler, "The Giuliani Inaugural." Ours is an uncertain world for the indefinite.

Read the story to Diogenes.

Friday, June 08, 2007


APRON, n. A piece of cloth worn in front to keep the clothes from soiling the hands.

She wore an apron ('tis a thing I loathe),
A dress beneath-a corset a la mode.
No further seek her merits to disclothe,
Nor draw her frailties from their dread abode.

2007 Update: An outer garment worn by a woman to disguise her rebellion or a man to announce his surrender.

Thursday, June 07, 2007


ADMIRAL, n. That part of a war-ship which does the talking while the figure-head does the thinking.

2007 Update: A ranking strategist in the Navy and a Deputy Analyst Adjutant on TV.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

An American Immigration Primer

A is for Assembly, calling patriots forth
A is for Americans who come from the north
A is for Amnesty the forgiven oppose
And A is for Alien with dirt on his clothes

A is for Anglos, who speak the Queen's tongue
A is for Arizona, no place to run.
A is for Albuquerque, where New Mexicans gather
or A can be Ames or Abilene if you'd rather.

A is for the Alamo, never forgot
And wept for profusely over beer when it's hot
The cause that men died for is shrouded with mystery
In San Antonio, Mexico, if you follow history.

A is for the Advocate, securing our borders,
Loyal and noble and barking out orders
To all who will march and don't mind hot air.
Go down to Home Depot, there's folks like that there.

A is for Asses like Tancredo and Dobbs
Lamenting the loss of American jobs
While making a fortune from babble and bellow
Proclaiming a menace with brown the new yellow.

A is for Axiom, called "debate" in this nation
A is for Alphabet, the start of education.
A is for Anxiety over wage and disease
Perhaps we'll do better if we get to the Bs.

GASBAG, n. An occidental Guru.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007


ADHERENT. n. A follower who has not yet obtained all that he expects to get.

2007 Update: A vicarious victim.

Monday, June 04, 2007


APOLOGIZE, v.i. To lay the foundation for a future offense.

2007 Update: To comfort in the short term those you would shame in the long. To justify what can't be rectified.

Saturday, June 02, 2007

Home Cooking

Episode 22 of The Meditations of Diogenes The Cynic. Thanks to the Southern Nevada Homeschool Advocacy Project (SNHAP) for this week's reading

To hear the story, come to Mama.

The Prattler is on hiatus until further notice.

Read the story with your Theban parents.

Friday, June 01, 2007


JESTER, n. An officer formerly attached to a king's household, whose business it was to amuse the court by ludicrous actions and utterances, the absurdity being attested by his motley costume. The king himself being attired with dignity, it took the world some centuries to discover that his own conduct and decrees were sufficiently ridiculous for the amusement not only of his court but of all mankind. The jester was commonly called a fool, but the poets and romancers have ever delighted to represent him as a singularly wise and witty person. In the circus of to-day the melancholy ghost of the court fool effects the dejection of humbler audiences with the same jests wherewith in life he gloomed the marble hall, panged the patrician sense of humor and tapped the tank of royal tears.

The widow-queen of Portugal
Had an audacious jester
Who entered the confessional
Disguised, and there confessed her.

"Father," she said, "thine ear bend down —
My sins are more than scarlet:
I love my fool — blaspheming clown,
And common, base-born varlet."

"Daughter," the mimic priest replied,
"That sin, indeed, is awful:
The church's pardon is denied
To love that is unlawful.

"But since thy stubborn heart will be
For him forever pleading,
Thou'dst better make him, by decree,
A man of birth and breeding."

She made the fool a duke, in hope
With Heaven's taboo to palter;
Then told a priest, who told the Pope,
Who damned her from the altar!
—Barel Dort

2007 Update: The acrobat within a chivalrous court or a wordsmith in a regime of instant messaging.

Rabbit! Rabbit!