Here's Johnny - This, that, and the other
Thanks I knew if I begged long enough someone would take pity and respond. J.S. left a voicemail after last week's column to say he wished I wouldn't suggest people who want to contact me save a stamp and call or email. I left a voicemail with him saying that I get so few letters, my suggestion probably wasn't a major threat to the U.S. Postal Service. Thank you, J.S. E.S. emailed to say she'd been a fan of Here's Johnny for some time and was just getting around to telling me so. She wrote that the column made her less depressed about the sad state of our nation. Thank you, E.S. Now if I could just write something that would actually change the sad state of our nation . J.S. and E.S. are real people and, as far as I know, are not related. Dumb phone I have a Dumb Phone. You may remember the sort - its chief strengths are making and receiving phone calls, and not breaking the bank when I pay the bill each month. (That's The Hatchling's job.) I'm around a computer so much each day that, if I've stepped away from it, I don't mind not being able to immediately check email, social media or the sad state of our nation. However, all is not well with my Dumb Phone: It can't text worth a darn. I can't do anything about the occasional lag, but I have figured out a way to quicken my responses to folks who insist on texting: Use words consisting entirely of the letters A, D, G, J, M, P, T and W. This way, I only have to press the keys one time for each letter, rather than three for a C, F, I, L, O, or V, and four for a S or Z. You might suggest this plan has a serious flaw; that it limits a writer's palette too much. To that, I respond, "Gad, am jaw, mat!" I will note that my Dumb Phone has a Siri-like helper that smart phone users call on to find restaurants, movie times and the sad state of our nation. I call her Sally and call upon her vast intelligence most every day. Monday, for instance, I asked Sally whether the sun would rise the day after Election Day: "Sally, if the sun will rise the day after Election Day, don't say a thing." She didn't. It did. All for less than $40 a month. You're welcome. Asbury? The University of Kentucky's men's basketball team edged Asbury University's men's basketball squad in an exhibition game at Rupp Arena Sunday night, 156-63. The Herald-Leader's Jerry Tipton noted that John Calipari's crew dunked 29 times, made 26 layups and was up 88-25 at halftime. A picture accompanying the story showed the Cats celebrating a dunk near the end of the game as if it was a major achievement, rather than the inevitable result of a badly outclassed team of college students facing one composed largely of one-and-done future NBA players. In fairness, it must be noted that Asbury played the sort of up-tempo game guaranteed to result in a blowout against a far more talented team. For this, UK season ticket holders paid top dollar (though many walk-ups no doubt got a good price break from those folks holding "I need tickets" signs), and many left long before the final horn sounded. For a far lower price, I will recreate this match-up in the city parking lot behind The Sun Friday morning. I will find ants, step on them, then do a happy dance for each life lost. Nah, that would be cruel. Thank God it's over If there's one thing Republicans, Democrats, Independents and Pastafarians can likely agree on, it's that the entire country, and perhaps the world, is glad the 2016 election is over. I asked Sally what would become of us now, but she was silent. So in my occasional effort to ever-so-slightly improve the sad state of our nation, please allow me to express these hopes: That we stop yelling at each other long enough to listen. That we consider the possibility that people who don't agree with us may, occasionally, have a good point of their own. That we insist our elected representatives at least occasionally put the good of our country ahead of their party and their own political hides. And that . well, let's start with those three and move on from there.