Humor Selections for June 12th, 2006

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Simon is struggling through a bus station with two huge and obviously heavy suitcases . . .

. . . when a stranger walks up to him and asks "Have you got the time?"

Simon sighs, puts down the suitcases and glances at his wrist. "It's a quarter to six," he says.

"Hey, that's a pretty fancy watch!" exclaims the stranger.

Simon brightens a little. "Yeah, it's not bad. Check this out" and he shows him a time zone display not just for every time zone in the world, but for the 86 largest metropolis. He hits a few buttons and from somewhere on the watch a voice says "The time is eleven 'till six" in a very West Texas accent. A few more buttons and the same voice says something in Japanese.

Simon continues "I've put in regional accents for each city". The display is unbelievably high quality and the voice is simply astounding. The stranger is struck dumb with admiration. "That's not all," says Simon. He pushes a few more buttons and a tiny but very hi-resolution map of New York City appears on the display. "The flashing dot shows our location by satellite positioning," explains Simon. "View recede ten," Simon says, and the display changes to show eastern New York state.

"I want to buy this watch!" says the stranger.

"Oh, no, it's not ready for sale yet; I'm still working out the bugs," says the inventor. "But look at this," and he proceeds to demonstrate that the watch is also a very creditable little FM radio receiver with a digital tuner, a sonar device that can measure distances up to 125 meters, a pager with thermal paper printout and, most impressive of all, the capacity for voice recordings of up to 300 standard-size books," though I only have 32 of my favorites in there so far" says Simon.

"I've got to have this watch!" says the stranger.

"No, you don't understand; it's not ready."

"I'll give you $1000 for it!"

"Oh, no, I've already spent more than -"

"I'll give you $5000 for it!"

"But it's just not -"

"I'll give you $15,000 for it!" And the stranger pulls out a checkbook. Simon stops to think. He's only put about $8500 into materials and development, and with $15 000 he can make another one and have it ready for merchandising in only six months. The stranger frantically finishes writing the check and waves it in front of him. "Here it is, ready to hand to you right here and now. $15,000. Take it or leave it."

Simon abruptly makes his decision. "OK," he says, and peels off the watch. They make the exchange and the stranger starts happily away.

"Hey, wait a minute," calls Simon after the stranger, who turns around warily. Simon points to the two suitcases he'd been trying to wrestle through the bus station. "Don't forget your batteries."

Submitted by Patty, Leasburg, VA.

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Advice From Women To Men
  • The reason why our bras don't always match our underwear is because WE actually change our underwear.
  • The next time you and your buddies joke about armed women in combat, take a poll to see which of you successfully aim at the toilet rim.
  • If we're watching football with you--it's not bonding--it's their butts.
  • Whenever possible, please try to say whatever you have to say after the movie.
  • Please don't drive when you're not driving.
  • Lay off the beans several hours before bedtime.
  • If you were really looking for an honest answer, you wouldn't ask in bed.
  • The next time you joke about female drivers, research the number of accidents caused by rubber-necking mini-skirts.
  • If only women gossip, how do you and your friends keep track of "who's easy"?
  • Stop telling us most male strippers are gay: we don't care.
  • When you're not around, I belch loudly, too.
  • We don't mind if you look in the mirror to check your appearance – in fact -- please do !!!
  • When you're out with us, please wear "our" favorite outfit rather than "yours" -- the torn jeans and dirty T-Shirt will last longer that way.
  • If you must grunt in reply, please develop a system to indicate a positive vs a negative grunt.
  • Don't insist that we "get off the phone" and then not talk to us.
  • Eye contact is best established above our shoulder-level.
  • Cleaning the house is not necessarily "women's work"; besides, most of the "dirt" and clutter is yours anyway.
  • Yes, we know most of the great chefs are men, why is it then you never want to cook?
  • We go to the Ladies Room in groups to talk about you.

Submitted by Lisa, LIbertytown, Md.

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A police officer pulls a guy over for speeding and they have the following exchange:

Officer: May I see your driver's license? Driver: I don't have one. I had it suspended when I got my 5th DUI.

Officer: May I see the registration for this vehicle? Driver: It's not my car. I stole it.

Officer: The car is stolen? Driver: That's right. But come to think of it, I think I saw the owner's card in the glove box when I was putting my gun in there.

Officer: There's a gun in the glove box? Driver: Yes sir. That's where I put it after I shot and killed the woman who owns this car and stuffed her in the trunk.

Officer: There's a BODY in the TRUNK?!?!? Driver: Yes, sir.

Hearing this, the officer immediately called his captain. The car was quickly surrounded by police, and the captain approached the driver to handle the tense situation:

Captain: Sir, can I see your license? Driver: Sure. Here it is.

It was valid.

Captain: Who's car is this? Driver: It's mine, officer. Here's the registration.

The driver owned the car.

Captain: Could you slowly open your glove box so I can see if there's a gun in it? Driver: Yes, sir, but there's no gun in it.

Sure enough, there was nothing in the glove box.

Captain: Would you mind opening your trunk? I was told you said there's a body in it. Driver: No problem.

Trunk is opened; no body.

Captain: I don't understand it. The officer who stopped you said you told him you didn't have a license, stole the car, had a gun in the glove box, and that there was a dead body in the trunk. 

Driver: Yeah, I'll bet the lying S.O.B. told you I was speeding, too!

Submitted by Marianne, Columbia, Md.

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A Spouse’s Guide to Garden Watering

Michael Hillman

"Remember, the yellow verbena only gets watered every other day, everything else in that bed gets water every day," hurriedly noted my Master Gardener wife as she packed the last of her clothes for her long trip.

"Got it. Yellow Ver -bean-um, once every other day, everything else twice a day . . . Um, err, one more time. Wher'se the bed again?" I shyly asked.

"It's the one across form the pond. Also, remember to feed the fish."

"Fish? Fish? When did we get fish?"

My wife closed her suitcase and sighed. "Six years ago . . ."

I'm sure if you polled Master Gardeners on what their worst nightmares are, leaving their gardens in the care, even if only temporarily, of well meaning, horticulturally challenged spouses, probably ranks at the top.

I've long ago given up keeping track of the plants that now call my wife's many gardens home. Prior to becoming an Adams' County Master Gardener, she was satisfied with a simple garden containing flowers, which I could not only recognized, but who's names I could pronounce without major contortions of my lips.

By the time she received her Master Gardener certificate, her gardens had quadrupled in size. The simple varieties that once graced the walkways, perfectly good plants as far as I was concerned, had been pulled out by their screaming roots, replace by obscure, albeit 'native', plants.

Having been given a taste of how spectacular gardens could, she moved on to more advance and focused training at Longwood Garden. Each new class brought eclectic new plant additions, and with them, new garden layouts.

When existing gardens could no longer meet her needs, she simply appropriated more of our ever- diminishing lawn. Soon she was buying weed killer in barrel containers, not to kill weeds, but to eradicate whole portions of the yard to accommodate her latest shade garden, raised bed garden, or butterfly garden.

As one can imagine, the daily maintenance of such an extensive array of gardens is a Herculean task at best. A task best suited for a Master Gardener, not a Master Gardener spouse! While I have always been ready and willing to help, the scope of my 'acceptable' services has diminished inversely to the growth in the size and complexity of the gardens.

At first, I was entrusted with planting 'hardy' plants, ones that didn't need the fine touch of a Master Gardener. But my unique ability to step on the most fragile plant in the bed I was assigned to, caused her to quickly reassign me. Given my unique ability to kill any plant I touched, weeding seemed a natural. But I got fired from that position for failing to master the technique of pulling weeds out by the root. Since then, my help in the garden has been limited to 'safe' activities, like dumping buckets of rocks over the fence line. Anything more than that, my wife claims, would be hazardous to the health and well-being of the gardens.

So, when my wife inquired if I would be willing to take responsibility for watering while she visited her parents for a week, I jumped at the chance to prove myself. After all, how hard could watering be?

I quickly learned that there was much more to watering then turning on the hose, opening a beer and stand around waiting to get bitten by mosquitoes. Apparently, one of the next things you learn when you become a full fledged Master Gardener, is the secret equation for determining just how much water a plant needs on a daily basis.

The equation is made up of several basic components. At first glance, it was fairly simplistic, and compared to running a nuclear power plant, seemed like child's play. Factors Master Gardeners take into consideration include: deepness of the roots (DR) - the deeper, the less frequent the need for watering; plant height or the tallness of the plant (T) - the taller the plant, the more need for watering; leaf width (L) - the wider the leaf, the more need for watering. Of course, flowering plants (FP), need more water then non-flowering (NFP) plants. Or, in mathematical speak: ((T x L)/DR) x (FP/NFP)

A good Master Gardner then adds in some fudge factors. For example: the closer the proximity of plants in a bed (PP) - the less you have to water; the windier the day (WD), the more you have to water; the sunnier the spot (SS) - the more one needs to water; the shadier (SS1) - the less you need to water. Or more simply: (WD x SS)/(PP x SS1)

Then, of course, one needs to factor in whether the soaker hoses you've been meaning to replace for the past five years leak more at the top or the bottom of the bed (SHL), the number of mosquito bites you're willing to accept in any one time period (MSB), and the number of times you're willing to fuss with a hose that always seems to kink at the worst possible time (HK). Or more simply, (SHL)/(MSB x HQ)

Put together, the equation on how much and how often to water a plant in a Master Gardener's garden looks like this: (((T x L)/DR) x (FP/NFP)) x ((WD x SS)/(PP x SS1)) x ((WD x SS)/(PP x SS1)). As a point of comparison, the equation that describes the chain reaction within a nuclear power plant has only six factors, and to calculate that requires some pretty heavy computing power. How Master Gardeners can juggle all these factors and calculations in their head and get it right every time is beyond me, but they do, and their gardens always look beautiful.

Given that the results of my first calculation for my wife's garden -- 300 inches of water -- was a little bit suspect, I ran the equation on my computer. It crashed halfway through and has refused to start since.

Realizing that what was left of my reputation as 'mindless' garden help was now at risk, I did the only thing I could think of -- I multiplied the whole equation by zero, subtracted 1, and began to water likes my wife buys plants: non-stop.

Every morning I raced the sun to the garden. Juggling the coffee IV and the watering hose took a little getting used to at first, but it was rewarding. Every garden was filled with a capricious array of colors and fragrances. Drooping plants, almost instantaneously rose to meet the rays of the sun after receiving their fill. Bugs of every shape and size, invisible to those who hurry through gardens, suddenly became ever-present. And for the first time, I realized that my wife had not simply created gardens, but whole worlds unto themselves.

Everyday I discovered a new collection of potted plants squirreled away in some corner of a garden, all with intended purposes that only my wife could reveal, and all of course, now desperately wilted from lack of water.

In spite of my efforts, it was apparent that I was losing the watering battle. Pulling out all the stops, I fired up the soaker hoses and even enlisted the help of local kids, all to no apparent avail. Finally in desperation, I contacted a local pool water company, and after being assured the water was untreated, contracted for a shipment.

As I stood watching the deluge from the tanker flood the gardens, my wife called to remind me: " . . Remember, over-watering is as bad as under-watering . . ."

Read other humor stories by Michael Hillman

Your House As Seen By:


Your Lender...

Your Buyer...

Your Appraiser...

Your Tax Assessor...

Submitted by Dick Williamsport, Md.

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June 9th Humor Page