Sunday, November 24, 2013

People Who Have No Sense of Humour

R.a.n.t. of week 11/24/13
Knock Knock
Who's There?
No one, this is the internet, not a house.

Okay, that was dumb. That was truly stupid. But there are two types of people who just read that. The first type are the ones who rolled their eyes. The second type just scratched their head and said, 'huh'? Either they truly don't understand it, (see blonde joke below), or they understand it, but don't see why it's funny. Let's try another one.

It's going to be a dirty joke this time, so skip ahead if you don't like dirty jokes.
Q: What did the pig listen to while sitting in the pigsty?
A: A ham radio.
Again, that really was dumb. But it's proving my point. Either you rolled your eyes or simply failed to find why it was funny. Especially trying to figure out why I said it was a dirty joke. Which, to be honest, was the real joke. [Dirty = Pigsty]

I have a friend who needs me to explain every time I tell a joke, why it's funny. **cough, Jenni, cough**
"Why was that a dirty joke? You didn't use any bad words, it wasn't vulgar, I don't get it."
Sometimes I think my friend is a Vulcan. "Humour, it is a difficult concept." - Saavik.

Admittedly, I probably joke around too much. Usually it's to aggravate someone after they've made a typo or a funny sounding post. I certainly think I'm being funny, not sure about anyone else.
P.S. - "Why does everything at Starbucks take the same"
Me - "Take the same what???"
P.S. - "Kayra's going to drive through Indiana."
Me - "I didn't know Indiana had a drive-thru."
Usually I'll get a response similar to: "You know what I meant". Of course I know what they meant, but didn't think commenting on what they actually meant would have been funny.

"Any joke that needs explaining, isn't a funny joke." That may be true, but there are a few people who just don't get the joke, either because they are too literal or have no sense of humour. Here's a blonde joke I tell frequently that gets a lot of laughs.
A blonde is putting together a puzzle when she finally gets frustrated and calls her father.
Blonde "Dad, I need help, I can't even match the corners."
Dad "What's the puzzle? What's the picture on the box?"
Blonde "It's a picture of a tiger."
Dad "Okay I"ll be right there."
Upon walking into the room, he takes one look at the puzzle and says,
Dad "I have two things to say to you. One, this isn't a puzzle. Two, let me help you put those frosted flakes back in the box."

I've told this joke a few times and usually people laugh, but I've had a few people wonder, "Why was she trying to put together a box of cereal?" Because she's blonde. The joke really isn't that hard to figure out, and you must admit, you must have laughed, even a little (or chuckled, giggled or snorted). Or maybe you just have no sense of humour.

Speaking of being blonde, join me next week when I discuss 'When Technology Makes us Dumberer."

Tune in next week. Same bat-time, same bat-channel.
P.S. - "In case anyone thinks I've forgotten, here is the line I told you I was going to write last week."

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Decisions, Decisions

R.a.n.t. of week 11/17/13
Paragraph One:
If there is one thing I hate, it's having to decide between two options. Especially when both options are equally pleasing. How does one decide? For me, it's usually the option that was available first and already decided upon. But at times, when things are additionally presented, it makes the original decision challenging to stick with.

If there is one thing I love, it's getting to decide between two options. Especially when both options are equally pleasing. More options to choose from is a big plus. Still, when an extra option is suddenly made available to me, I feel like a jerk if I don't go with the first option I had already decided upon.

Paragraph Two:
I had just such a quandary this weekend. Initially I planned with my son for a weekend get-away. The plans were still in flux but already presented. Several years ago, we spent the night in Chicago and I was considering doing the same thing. Ultimately, I decided to travel to the relatively close city of Woodstock, which is the city where most of 'Groundhog Day' was filmed. If you know anything about me, you'll know I absolutely love the movie. Of course, I was then invited over to a friends house for games and dinner with other friends. Tempting, temping.

I had just such a quandary this weekend. Initially I made plans with a friend of mine for a Sunday evening of DVD watching. Lately we've been rewatching episodes of either 'Doctor Who' or 'Star Trek: Deep Space Nine'. To be honest, it's been many weeks since we've done this last so it was going to be a real treat to do once again. And then came an offer to join a few friends for a 5:00 dinner. To be honest, this is the first time I've been invited out by this particular group of friends so I was going to hate having to tell them no. Decisions, decisions.

Paragraph Three:
To a small degree, I always have this exact problem when trying to decide the topic of my next r.a.n.t. Should I find something I've talked about before and find a new angle to tell it again? Or should I find something completely new? To combat this, in a Jeffrey Scott first, I'm actually going to decide next weeks r.a.n.t., this week. So what will be the discussion for next week? People Who Have no Sense of Humour. Join me again next week, when you'll hear me say, "In case anyone thinks I've forgotten, here is the line I told you I was going to write last week."

To a large degree, when trying to decide the topic of my next r.a.n.t. I have this exact problem. I hate rehashing older topics and prefer to find something new each week. So to eliminate this dilemma for next week, I have a BIG ANNOUNCEMENT! In a Jeffrey Scott first, I'm going to decide my next r.a.n.t., this week. So what will it be? When Technology Makes us Dumberer. Tune in next week. Same bat-time, same bat-channel.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Ghost Writing

R.a.n.t. of week 11/10/13
As many of you know, I'm a very busy man. When I'm not working on some sort of literary piece, be it prose or poem, I'm likely engaged in one of my many other interests. Currently, this list includes learning the Sgaw language, photography, watching Doctor Who, and complaining about the weather (gratuitous joke). Mix all that together with my regular daily regimen, and I suddenly become overwhelmed. What's a poor slob like myself supposed to do? The same thing any sub-par, hack writer does, hire a ghost-writer. I'd like to assume everyone knows what a ghost-writer is, but for the laymen, I'll explain. A ghost-writer is someone whom writes for another person and generally does not get credit. But today, having nothing better to do, I decided to write about a ghost-writer I've used in the past. Her name is Jenni Long and she's the most talented and influential writer I know. She's currently employed by a well known local newspaper which shall, for the time being, remain nameless.

Okay, confession time. The paragraph above was actually written by my ghost-writer. I thought today it would be interesting if I introduced her, but turn the tables slightly. One reason I did this was to provide an example of what a ghost-writer can actually do. So today I asked if she would ghost-write a short simple paragraph of myself introducing her. Besides a few things I normally would have changed, I doubt anyone would have figured out it was being written by someone else. So what else has she written for me? All I'm prepared to say at the moment is she helped out on my anniversary blog post and has written one more of my entries since then. But I won't say which one, see if you can figure it out. So why the ghost-writer? Jenni's explanation wasn't entirely accurate. To be honest, it was a week we both were involved with a blog exchange. So I actually ghost-wrote for her on one of her online articles. How cool is that?

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Jenni Long is a writer and editor
of the Canadian children's magazine
'Fille Forte'. That being said, her
thoughts do not necessarily reflect
those of myself.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

The Worlds 50 Greatest Love Songs - Part 22

R.a.n.t. of week 11/03/13
Welcome back to "Musical Countdown", I'm your host Charles Winthrop. The past two months we've been counting down 'The Worlds 50 Greatest Love Songs'. Last week we reviewed the French song, "J'aime ma Femme" by Pierre Rousseau at #30. This week we are up to #29, "I Love a Rainy Night" by Eddie Rabbit. As with most songs, it's got majestic and profound opening lyrics. Take a listen...

Well I love a rainy night
I love a rainy night
I love to hear the thunder
Watch the lightning
When it lights up the sky
You know it makes me feel good

Hmmm, in retrospect, I suppose I should have done a little research before doing the intro for this song. I guess not every song jumps right into the passion. My thinking, of course, the rain must be symbolic of his true, natural, tender feelings towards his hearts desire. He'll likely start identifying thusly, in the next stanza.

Well I love a rainy night
It's such a beautiful sight
I love to feel the rain
on my face
taste the rain on my lips.
In the moonlight shadow

No. Didn't happen. I was thinking the singer would tie the first stanza of his love song to the true object of his affection in the second. Certainly the song isn't just about a rainy night. How would that be a love song? Good news is, the chorus is next. A chorus generally links all the emotions and feelings found throughout the song into a neat little package.

Showers washed
All my cares away
I'd wake up to a sunny day
'Cause I love a rainy night
Yes I love a rainy night
Well I love a rainy night
I love a rainy night

This song is doing my head in. So far he's expressed love for a rainy night, thunder, feeling the rain on his skin and then more rainy nights. The producers must have erred when including this song. We were looking for the worlds greatest love songs - primarily between a man and a woman, not between a man and a rainy night. Well, we started this, might as well listen how he finishes his rainy night love affair.

I love a rainy night
You can see it in my eyes
I love a rainy night
Makes me high
Well, I love a rainy night
And I love you too

Ahh, his eyes are delighted by the image of his beautiful maiden. Wait, NO! You can see in his eyes he LOVES the rainy night again. So much so it gives him a natural high. And then he reminds us yet again. And then, finally, at the very end of the song he tells his cherished, essentially, "Oh and you are ok too". What folly, what ludicrous sentiment. Who compiled this list? Get Murphy on the phone, and my manager!

Well, that's all the time we have this week for 'The Worlds 50 Greatest Love Songs'. Join us next week as we move on to #28,  "Ich liebe mein bier" by Otto Wolter. I may have to translate these lyrics before we air next week.

This transcribed excerpt used with permission.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Charles Winthrop is a Washington
state writer and D.J. His interests
include music (both modern and
classical) and is a fine art connoisseur.
His articles have appeared in various
magazines including, 'Art Beautiful',
'Music of the Renaissance', and 'The Walla Walla Whistler'.


Somewhere not so far away
her skills are fine and true.
Adored and loved so ever more
Who'll bid the fair adieu?

The writer writes a silent word
then ponders just a scant.

You cannot rest, so off you go,
success is guaranteed.
Why stay upon a single place
when others have your need?

A versifier, lonely and hushed,
he pens his farewell thoughts.

Who, soever can fill the void,
a replacement hard to find.
Still all will cheer for her away
to which she's been assigned.

And quietly sits the poet,
there's much poetry to write.