All posts by Splotchy


Man goes to doctor, complains of uncontrollable, dark depression. “I’ve tried everything, doctor.   Medication, meditation, light therapy.  Nothing works.  I’m full of despair.”

Doctor says, “The answer is simple.  The great clown Pagliacci is in town.  Go see his performance.  He will lift your spirits and make you forget your troubles.”

The man buries his head in his hands.  “But…” the man says.  “*I* am Pagliacci.”

“Really?” the doctor asks.

The man perks up.  “Nahhhh.  I’m just kidding.  But how fucking crazy would that be, huh?!! Super fucking crazy, right?!”

“We don’t use that word here, sir,” the doctor replies.


“Crazy.  But yes, the f-word is not really welcome here, either.”

“Do you have any tickets to Pagliacci?” the man asks.

“I do, but my wife and I are going. Sir, are you even depressed?” the doctor asks.

“Not particularly.”

“Please get out of my office.”


Sitcom Actress Shaggy Dog Stories

Sometimes I forget things I have written. Three years ago, I apparently had a bug up my butt to write several very groan-inducing shaggy dog stories over a series of tweets. Well, #ShaggyDogStoryEndingWithASomewhatObscureSitcomActress tweets, to be precise.

I was amused enough with three-years-ago me (sad, isn’t it?) that I decided to collect the tweets into a post.

Enjoy! And I’m sorry!


The Candy Collector’s Convention kickoff event was in two hours, and Irma realized her Snickers custom t-shirt didn’t fit any more. Without some form of candy-related article of clothing, she’d be the laughingstock of the CCC! She called her friend Jewel for help.

Jewel said, “Get something out of your collection with a hole in it. Thread one of your gold chains through and make a necklace.”

Irma, relieved, did just that. In fact, her last-minute jewelry was the hit of the CCC. All that was required was to don a Pez cow.


It was one of the coldest days of the winter of ’79. The people in the model airplane club were getting woozy. The radiators thumped as they flooded the room with heat. Terrence watched people outside huddle against the brutal cold. He stood there, transfixed.

Anne said, “Terrence, you alright? You seem like you’re in another world.”

“I think it’s the heat, Anne. And the glue. Making me groggy.”

Anne patted him on the back. “I’ll open a window,” she said. A stream of cold air whistled in. Terrence perked up. Everyone else did, too. Anne asked, “Is that better, Terrence?”

“That’s great,” replied Terrence. “Thank you. Actually, could you let the air in more, Anne?”


It was morning at the Children’s Television Workshop in early 1975. A horrible tragedy had occurred. The original Bert had burned up in a freak accident, and a series of Ernie & Bert bits were scheduled for filming that day.

Thankfully, the CTW had ample raw material to assemble a new Bert: yellow felt, eyes, striped fabric, special black yarn for hair. A senior puppetmaker scrambled to construct a new Bert Muppet. He grabbed an intern walking down the hall.

“Where are my Bert supples?!” he screamed.

The intern pointed down the hall. “Behind that door is raw Berts.”


Violet loved going to the annual US Mint parade. She wanted more than that, though. She wanted to walk in the parade. Each US currency denomination had a representative in the parade. The eligibility rules for walkers were established years ago. For some reason, age was a determining factor, and correlated to what denomination a person could represent.

For example, a person had to be over 50 years of age to represent the $100 bill. For the $50 bill, one must be at least 35. The ages seemed arbitrary, but rules were rules.

Violet wrote a long, impassioned essay to the parade committee. She explained her lifetime fascination with the parade, spoke of her recent 18th birthday, and made a heartfelt request.

The parade committee was moved, and some members were moved to tears. Violet’s essay was published in US Mint Magazine along with an announcement. With great pride and much fanfare, the parade committee made Violet that year’s penny marshal.


Angus McTeague LOVED the work of Michael Mann. He religiously watched Miami Vice when it first aired, and later bought the DVDs. He loved Mann’s movies — Manhunter, Heat, Thief, Collateral. He even liked movies where Mann served as Executive Producer. His favorite of those films was Band of the Hand.

Angus liked to pretend he and his brothers were in their own ragtag mercenary group. Angus would cause a stir in his neighborhood, goading people into a confrontation, usually drawing his brothers into the fray.

He would spit, raise his fists, and snarl, “Ye’ll pay! Ye’ll rue meh clan o’ han!”


Ouch.  That title.  “Syngables”?  Is that really necessary? Yes, I am afraid it is.

This happens to me.  Okay.  I’ll hear a phrase that matches a certain syllable pattern, and I’ll immediately lapse into a song phrase that matches the pattern.  This probably happens more times than I can remember, but the one I lapse into more than anything else is the chorus of “Girlfriend in a Coma”.

For my “Girlfriend In  A Coma” trigger to be flipped, the words will usually have to be a standalone phrase.  If you’re talking to me and you unwittingly utter a two-syllable word, followed two one-syllable words and another two-syllable word, I *probably* won’t start singing.

Anyways, once triggered, I’ll immediately start singing “Girlfriend in a Coma” but with the different words.  I’m sure this is endearing.

The other day, I unexpectedly had another “Syngable” moment .  I saw  a sign for a “Multi-Family Yard Sale” and without warning, a synapse fired and I sang the words to the tune of  “Sacrificial Bonfire”.  (I’m talking about the part where they say “Sacrificial bonfire [Multi-family yard sale]!  Must burn…” )

I later realized that to make this phrase fit, the word “family” had to be sung as two syllables, not three.  Whoa, is that how I say “family”?  Aw, hell.  I think I do.

Well, if it fits the chorus to an XTC song from the 1980’s, I guess it’s worth it.


Haven’t seen this video before.  One of the rockingest songs on their album Time For A Witness.


Not sure if I have seen this video, either.  You can’t not be happy listening to this song.


A pretty cover of VU’s “After Hours, played during a soundcheck from their July 4th night at Maxwell’s.   Maxwell’s is going to close at the end of this month.  It means a lot to a lot of people.  I only went there one night, but it was where I got to see my favorite band, and I will miss it.


All these videos were uploaded by the wonderful @zippy49.  Thank you, Janice.

Parade Remnants

When I was negotiating the sale of my sports card collection, Michael Osacky had indicated as a possible enticement that he would write about my collection for Parade Magazine.  My story would be up in lights!  Or newspaper!  Anyways, he indicated he had some sort of role as a columnist for the magazine.

After I published my blog post, I sent him the link.  He got back to me a little later and thanked me.

Yesterday he sent me a link to his own article.  From what I can tell, this was his first article for Parade.

I thanked him for the article, but then after a while I started thinking about it.

He didn’t link to my original blog post at all.  I couldn’t remember what stories I told him, and what stories he might have gotten from the blog post. I thought that the post itself was a nice remembrance of my dad, seen through the prism of my card collection.

Should he have linked to my post?  Was it relevant?  Was what he posted incomplete?  It was about things, but not memories, feelings, or people.  I’m not really sure what it’s about.


Instagram V-v-v-v-v-v-video

I took a few Instagram videos on the way home from work.  My connection was kind of spotty, so they eventually all failed to upload.  It was kind of annoying, because, unlike photos, you can’t select videos from your library.  You have to go straight from camera to upload, and if the upload cheeses, you’re hosed.

This is the same way Vine works (or doesn’t work, rather).  Boooooo!

Oh, the other day ShesAllWrite did a nice comparison of Instagram and Vine.  I do like the look and feel of the Instagram video, and think 15 seconds is a much nicer time to work with than Vine’s 6 seconds. Since I have been able to make videos on Instagram, I haven’t gone back to Vine once.

Anyways, I uploaded all my failed-to-upload videos to YouTube. I think they’re nice.

Enjoy (or don’t!).