Archive for June, 2005

The death of common sense

Today we mourn the passing of a friend by the name of Common Sense. Common sense lived a long life but died from heart failure. No one really knows how old he was since his birth records were long ago lost in bureaucratic red tape. He selflessly devoted his life to service in schools, hospitals, homes, factories and offices. He helped folks get jobs done without fanfare and foolishness.


For decades, petty rules, silly laws and frivolous lawsuits held no power over Common Sense. He was credited with cultivating such valued lessons as to know when to come in out of the rain, the early bird gets the worm, and life isn’t always fair. Common Sense lived by simple, sound financial policies (don’t spend more than you earn), reliable parenting strategies (the adults are in charge, not the kids), and it’s okay to come in second.


A veteran of the Industrial Revolution, the Great Depression, and the Technological Revolution, Common Sense survived cultural and educational trends including, body piercing, whole language, ebonics and new math. His health declined when he became infected with the “If it only helps one person it’s worth it” bug.


In recent decades his waning strength proved no match for the ravages of overbearing federal regulation. He watched in pain as good people became ruled by self-seeking lawyers and enlightened auditors. Common Sense knew the end was near when

· Schools endlessly implemented zero tolerance policies
· Reports of six-year-old boys charged with sexual harassment for kissing a classmate
· A teen suspended for taking a swig of mouthwash after lunch
· A teacher fired for reprimanding an unruly student
· Schools need parental consent to administer aspirin to a student but cannot inform the parent when a student is pregnant or wants an abortion.


Finally, Common Sense lost his will to live as the Ten Commandments became contraband, churches became businesses, criminals received better treatment than victims, and federal judges stuck their noses in everything from Boy Scouts to professional sports. Common Sense drifted in and out of logic but was kept informed of developments, regarding questionable regulations for asbestos, low-flow toilets, smart guns, the nurturing of Prohibition Laws and mandatory air bags.


Common Sense was preceded in death by his parents Truth and Trust; his wife, Discretion; his daughter, Responsibility; and his son Reason. Three stepbrothers survive him: Rights, Tolerance and Whiner. Not many attended his funeral unfortunately, because so few realize he is gone.


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You know you live in California if…

Your coworker has 8 body piercings and none are visible.

You make over $300,000 and still can’t afford a house.

You take a bus and are shocked at two people carrying on a conversation in English.

Your child’s 3rd-grade teacher has purple hair, a nose ring, and is named Breeze.

You’ve been to a baby shower that has two mothers and a sperm donor.

You have a very strong opinion about where your coffee beans are grown, and you can taste the difference between Sumatran and Ethiopian.

A really great parking space can totally move you to tears.

A low speed police pursuit will interrupt ANY TV broadcast.

Gas costs $1.00 per gallon more than anywhere else in the U.S.

A man gets on the bus in full leather regalia and crotchless chaps. You don’t even notice.

Unlike back home, the guy at 8:30am at Starbucks wearing the baseball cap and sunglasses who looks like George Clooney really IS George Clooney.

Your car insurance costs as much as your house payment.

Your hairdresser is straight, your plumber is gay, and the woman who delivers your mail is into S & M.

You can’t remember…is pot illegal???!!!

Its barely sprinkling rain and there’s a report on every news station: “STORM WATCH 2003.”

You pass an elementary school playground and the children are all busy with their cells or pagers.

It’s barely sprinkling rain outside, so you leave for work an hour early to avoid all the weather-related accidents.

Both you AND your dog have therapists

The Terminator is your governor.

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New Office Terminology

BLAMESTORMING: Sitting around in a group, discussing why a deadline was missed or a project failed, and who was responsible.

SEAGULL MANAGER: A manager who flies in, makes a lot of noise, craps on everything, and then leaves.

ASSMOSIS: The process by which some people seem to absorb success and advancement by kissing up to the boss rather than working hard.

SALMON DAY: The experience of spending an entire day swimming upstream only to get screwed and die in the end.

CUBE FARM: An office filled with cubicles.

PRAIRIE DOGGING: When someone yells or drops something loudly in a cube farm, and people’s heads pop up over the walls to see what’s going on.

MOUSE POTATO: The on-line, wired generation’s answer to the couchpotato.

SITCOMs: Single Income, Two Children, One Mortgage. What yuppies turn into when they have children and one stops working to stay home with the kids.

STRESS PUPPY: A person who seems to thrive on being stressed out and whiny.

SWIPEOUT: An ATM or credit card that has been rendered useless because the magnetic strip is worn away from extensive use.

XEROX SUBSIDY: Euphemism for swiping free photocopies from one’s workplace.

IRRITAINMENT: Entertainment and media spectacles that are annoying but you find yourself unable to stop watching them. The Peterson trial and most reality TV are prime examples.

PERCUSSIVE MAINTENANCE: The fine art of whacking the crap out of an electronic device to get it to work again.

ADMINISPHERE: The rarefied organizational layers beginning just above the rank and file. Decisions that fall from the adminisphere are often profoundly inappropriate or irrelevant to the problems they were meant to solve.

404: Someone who’s clueless. From the World Wide Web error message 404 Not Found” meaning that the requested do*****ent could not be located.

GENERICA: Features of the American landscape that are exactly the same no matter where one is, such as fast food joints, strip malls, and subdivisions.

OHNOSECOND: That minuscule fraction of time in which you realize that you’ve just made a BIG mistake.

WOOFYS: Well Off Older Folks.

CROP DUSTING: Surreptitiously farting while passing through a cube farm, then enjoying the sounds of dismay and disgust that leads to PRAIRIE DOGGING.

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