This year, I got knocked out on November 11th!
That is a record (pun intended).

John Tarman and I play a holiday game every year starting about now. It’s called Dodgesong. But I’m already out, out as of November 11th while innocently walking through a Walmart parking lot.

 

Holiday Dodgesong Game

So one of my favorite holiday traditions is playing Holiday Dodgesong with John Tarman. In Holiday Dodgesong players try to see who can go the longest without hearing Paul McCartney’s 1979 dirty ditty, Anthem for the Commercialization of Christmas, Ballad of Bah Humbug, Psalm of Psychological Torture, Shanty of Sh… (well you get the idea), it’s the Christmas song “Wonderful Christmastime.” Once you hear the music you’re out. Once you’re out you must immediately call the other players to declare you’ve been taken out by the mass-market holiday song. After making the declaration you may freely begin complaining about the start of the “Holiday Season.” 

The complaints are not about Thanksgiving, Black Friday, Cyber Monday, Yule, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, Advent, Festivus, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, St. Stephen’s Day/Boxing Day, Winter’s Solstice, New Year’s Eve, New Year’s Day, or Epiphany specifically.  But the grievances usually center around commercialization, broadening marketing scope, and premature holiday cheer-ulation. 

Some traditional criticisms are how you’re not ready for Christmas, how Christmas creep annoys the hell out of you, how everyone has missed the true meaning of Christmas, etc., etc. You may pontificate on any other pre-holiday gripes you may have once your ears catch that tune. An especially popular expressed beef is about wives oozing with Christmas cheer in early November.

It should be noted that the winner, the last player to report hearing the song, receives nothing for their victory.  The satisfaction of a holiday season without “Wonderful Christmastime.” is rewarding enough. The trick is not to go anywhere with holiday music playing until the other player has gotten knocked out. I think I made it to December 23rd one year. That was a happy year and a perfect time to start holiday shopping.

Don’t get me wrong; I’m a huge Paul McCartney fan, my friends can attest for that. I was even accused, in the late 1990s, “If Paul McCartney made a CD of him farting, you’d buy it.”  I’m a big fan. 

But that song blaring through some retail establishment’s PA system makes my teeth sting! I think you’d all agree; it’s nauseating.

So, since I’m out, I thought you might comment below when and where you first hear the song this year. Gripes are bonus points.

Oops! You’re out! You can start complaining!

a mosh pit at a Joan Baez concert

My 2020 One-Liners

I’ve been writing a joke a day for over 2 years now.  It’s been an antidepression skill.  So, I thought to share some of my better one-liners from the past year.  I had a nice explanation and introduction planned about humor and treating depression, but that was a buzz kill.  We can talk about that at another time.  Here are my one-liners:

Visual 2020 One-Liners:

— An interpretive display of emoji in the form of George Carlin’s Seven Dirty Words:

?, ??, ??, ???, ??, ?‍?‍???, & ?  Do better!

 

That really needs to go on a T-shirt!


Standard 2020 One-Liners:

— My memory so good I remember things that didn’t even happen.

— In the immortal words of George W. Bush, “That was some weird shit.”

— You know, ABBA’s song Fernando really holds up. It sucks as much today as it did in 1976.

— I remember my junior year at Purdue, I was so upset that I couldn’t attend my Psychology 403 final, went to the bar, and got blotto drunk because my mom had told me the truth about Santa.

— Saying “we need to think outside the box” is a very in-the-box type of thinking.

— I was very fond of the music in the ‘80s. I especially like it when Madonna left the Beatles and formed Wheezer with Willie Nelson and Dean Martin.

— Hello, welcome to the poetry hotline; examples of onomatopoeia are Aaaaaaa, ohuuuuu, and Thrupppppp. 

— My hypnagogic audio hallucinations have a broader vocabulary than I do. Man; that’s really weird.

— You know it’s going to be a good day when after the morning constitutional your bidet is straight on target?

— Tonight I grilled some steaks, it was rare enough that a good Purdue veterinarian could have it back on its feet in 15 minutes


Elias’ 2020 One-Liners

— if our velocity stays at 0 miles an hour, we will arrive in an infinite number of hours.


Pandemic 2020 One-Liners

— I just looked in the mirror and my soul shuddered like an epileptic experiencing a piss shiver.

— The pandemic’s treating me like it caught me sleeping with his wife.

— Don’t hurt yourself, I don’t want to have to put on pants and a mask just to go to the ER.

— Do you ever think we’re living in some satanic version of Matryoshka dolls with disasters and crises nested inside disasters and crises?


Rock and Roll Advice 2020 One-Liners

— I did listen to John Mellencamp… partially. I forgot all about that macho shit, but I forgot to learn how to play guitar.

— I also didn’t really heed the Rolling Stones. I know I can’t always get what I want. Yet, I didn’t really try as Mick suggested, so I have also not gotten what I need.

— I just out and out ignored Kenny Rogers. I have never known when to hold ’em, never known when to fold ’em, never known when to walk away, and never known when to run. And somehow, I’ve always counted my money when I sat at the table.

— And for Christ’s Sake, do not tell Aerosmith that I have not dreamt until my dreams came true.

— Alas, Idina Mendel told me to, “Let It Go.” I didn’t.

— Finally, 2020 made me Stop Believin’, even though Journey told me not to.

— Is Bobby Sue from Take The Money and Run the same person as Bobby McGee? I have never seen Steve Miller and Kris Kristofferson; they might be the same person.


Simile 2020 One-Liners

— My ears buzz more than a tipsy bumblebee ? trying to hump his reflection on the tip of y’all’s grand momma’s stainless-steel “massager.” (I have wicked Tinnitus)

— … like the self-righteousness of a small-town cop pulling over a tie-dye clad driver of a VW bus.

 


Lalochezia Producing 2020 One-Liners

(Coming soon to a Subscribers only content)

Okay, a Lalochezia inducing teaser:

— In the Lalochezia reboot of I Love Lucy, the twin beds are replaced by a king-sized waterbed and I would LOVE Lucy.


Political One-Liners

—What this country needs is just for Senator Chuck Schumer and Senator Ted Cruz to sit down to have dinner together and a good heart to -heart attack.

— I am starting to view my political perspective as an anarchist. Not the type of anarchy proposed by punk rockers with studded leather and military surplus boots, but the classical form of anarchy espoused by Ronald Reagan.

— Anyone else gets RuPaul and Rand Paul mixed up?

~ Uh… No more; we don’t know each other well enough yet.

 

 

 

 

Note: I really wanted to have some kind of voting or rating for each joke.  Does anyone know of a WordPress Plugin for that?

 

Now, Your Turn in the Comments!

 

 

 

Snake in the Grass

Short Story – Donna Lafollette

“Oh, am I sick! I just can’t keep this up. I think I’m going to puke,” I thought, as my second hour juniors passed forward their essays on Thoreau’s “Civil Disobedience.” Finally, the bell rang to end class, and I dashed from my second floor room to the restroom on the first floor. “I can’t keep racing down here,” I moaned, as I watched the remains of my chili lunch swirl away from me. “I’m going home!”

After I reported to the office, I grabbed my London Fog raincoat, jotted down some hurried notes on a Post-It for the sub, and trudged to my yellow Volkswagen bug. The thought — Yellow Bug — brought burning bile bubbling into my throat.

When I finally got home, I pulled into the gravel driveway, parked the car, opened the door, and dragged myself toward the front door of my house. Then I froze. There in my path coiled a slimy, green snake. To me it looked as big as a boa basking in the warm April sun. But, worst of all, it barred my way to the house. What could I do? Repulsion shivered over my body like a prickly, cold rain, but I had to slay the evil enemy that lay in my way. I raced to the barn to get a sharp hoe but stopped. I couldn’t do that: raise the hoe high in the air, swing it down, and chop through its green slithery neck sending its red blood everywhere. Bile again seared my throat.

Snake in the Grass
Snake in the Grass

Back to the car I dashed. I revved the engine and sped through the yard toward the snake. I’d run it down! Ignoring the deep ruts in the damp earth, I made several passes at my reptilian foe. Suddenly, realized I didn’t know if the snake was dead or not. It could be lurking right outside my car door. What was I to do? Would I step on it if I got out of the car? With a flash of genius, I drove right up to the front stoop of the house, opened the car door, leaped out, and darted inside. Safe at last!

Much later, when my husband arrived home, he spied the furrows in the yard and the Volkswagen with its door ajar. He ran to move the car, but when he cranked the key that I had left in the ignition, the engine ground and barely turned over. Then, just a click. I hadn’t slaughtered the monster snake, but I had butchered the battery.

 

True Family Story

Short Story – Donna Lafollette

Single Dad Hack - Cooking lessons - Twice-Baked Potatoes

Single Dad Hack - Cooking lessons number one, don't start a completely new recipe at 4:45 on a school night. It's 7:35, and the taters just jumped out of the oven. Second, you really only need four potatoes for three men, and six is way too much (actually, now that we're into the meal, we only needed three - will they freeze?). My twice-baked potatoes are loaded with sour cream, cheddar, scallions, bacon bits, mini pepperoni, topped with broccoli (not mine), a side salad, and Strawberry ice cream for dessert. And the third lesson, with six potatoes, you don't really need the broccoli, the side salad, or the strawberry ice cream(finding a way to ditch the broccoli was my plan all along). Top that, Mr. Other Single Dads! A little challenge to get our dad's vibes cooking (pun intended).
And the final lesson learned from cooking Twice-Baked Potatoes for the first time on a school night (It was more of an insight than a lesson), I fed my class of 2025 Aggie tonight! AND when he stuffed his 17-year-old mouth with twice-baked potatoes, looking not unlike a ground squirrel stuffed with nuts for burial, he said, "TmhmamTm'ms Rmemamlmy Gmomomd Dmamd!" I understood that perfectly; he loves my cooking! But, more importantly, he's going to hate dorm food! He'll be wantin' a Dad home-cooked meal and will come home just a little more! Ha! That's the best Single Dad Hack you can do.
PS. When viewing the photo, ignore cleaning supplies in the background. I am a single Dad, for goodness' sakes! I can't be expected to cook and clean AND put the supplies away (actually, I did that on purpose to raise my Super Dad score)!
Prep Time1 hr 45 mins
Cook Time1 hr 20 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Class or 2015 Aggie, Confort Food, Potatoes, Single Dad, Single Dad Hack, Twice-Baked Potatoes
Servings: 8 Men
Calories: 659133kcal
Cost: 20

Equipment

  • Baking sheet
  • Mixing bowl
  • Spoon
  • Knife
  • Potatoe Smasher
  • A son to eat what's left in the bowl

Ingredients

  • 6 Russet Baking Potatoes You have two growing boys; you have to have six potatoes, don't ya?
  • 1 Big Ol' Bag Bacon Bits 6 ozs or 9 ozs bag, whatever gets the job done (we're not going to measure anyway, this is a Single Dad Recipe!).
  • 1 Cup Sour Cream Again, a cup, two cups, I don't know. It was a container - Single Dad Recipe measurements.
  • 4 tbsp Butter I used somewhere between a half and the whole damn stick (there were 6 'taters, for goodness' sakes!).
  • 1 lb Shredded cheddar It could have been more, it could have been less, you're getting the trend here.
  • 1 Bundle Scallions
  • 1 Flower Broccoli My sons eat broccoli, I don't.
  • Salt
  • Pepper

Instructions

  • Wash, oil, place potatoes on a baking sheet covered with parchment paper, and place in an oven to bake at 350°.
  • Pull potatoes out of the oven and preheat oven at 350°. Help son with video production project and forget to put the potatoes in the oven for about 15 minutes.
  • Now, put the potatoes in the oven and cook it till you can say, "Fork 'em, they're done!" and mean it.
  • Scoop out the insides of the potatoes, forming a canoe. Don't worry about the canoe falling apart like it was just made of Burch bark. The rafts will get covered like a barge chugging down the Ohio River because they are now flat ones. Whoa, wipe your brow after that stretched metaphor. - Put the potato insides in a pot.
  • Dump the pot of potato insides into a large mixing bowl, as you misjudged how much potato guts you'd get out of one 'Tater!
  • Mix in everything but the broccoli (you're going to say, "Damn, I forgot the Broccoli," anyway).
  • Mix it up with the potato smasher and look in awe at how much potato guts and fixin's are magically growing in the bowl!
  • Pile up the potato guts and Fixin's in the canoes (for the ones that fell apart, remember your loading barges). Top with the extra cheese (if you didn't put the whole bag in the mixing bowl) and some extra scallions.
  • Put the potato canoes stuffed with potato guts back on the parchment paper and add the potato barges piled with its cargo. Put all back in the oven. Yell, "Damn," and turn the oven back on.
  • With the oldest son, listen to Robin Willims' bit on Golf and Scottland (full version). Forget about all about the Twice-Baked-Potatoes until the youngest comes in and asks, "when will dinner be ready?" Yell, "Damn!" again, dash off to the kitchen. Pull out the 'Taders, just as the cheese is starting to brown and the edges are a little bit crispy.
  • Dish them out! Marvel, how many 'Taders are left.
  • Beam with pride with your son says, "TmhmamTm'ms Rmemamlmy Gmomomd Dmamd!" Rush off to social media, post everywhere, so the world knows you are supper dad and your kids love you.
  • Wrap each leftover 'Tader with the Immaculate and Infinite, Holy Plastic Wrap Roll! Place in the freezer for next week's Single Dad Lunches.