Category: Humor

Some active “humor” for this Independence Day!

Umbrella Ladies

This is the unedited, original version of my Washington Post Style section piece from March 2001. It was originally written as part of a tour guide’s memoir/guidebook I was working on at the time! 🙂



by Beth Homicz

Sometime in the early 1960s, when John F. Kennedy was president and his lovely wife set fashion standards with a wave of her hand, a company started up to provide tour guide services to groups visiting the nation’s capital. The guides were ladies, and showed it by wearing white gloves as Mrs. Kennedy was wont to do (the company advertised “white-glove service”), and by each carrying an open umbrella for use as a sort of standard ‘round which the group would rally.

Follow the umbrella,” these ladies would chirp to their charges. Group leaders who returned annually would ask for their favorite “umbrella lady” and gush about how the group had enjoyed the tour the previous year.

Over time, the umbrella became a tradition among guides in the capital, even those who worked for other agencies, and in other cities as well – Montreal, Continue reading

Nerd Queen!

Uber Cool Nerd Queen, thank you very much! LOL. says I'm an Uber Cool Nerd Queen. What are you? Click here!

I was so surprised by these results that I just had to post ’em. Me, uber cool? AND a nerd? Geek, maybe, but nerd??? Nerd is a title of honor, my friends! Nerd is a pride thing!

I’m such a non-techie that it’s embarrassing. I don’t think I’ve ever even seen a slide rule in the flesh (or is that in the wood?)  And except for TNG, DS9, and the less bloody episodes of Firefly, I am NOT a sci-fi fan.

But you never know, I guess… 😀  So here’s one more nerd queen joining the sisterhood!

Take the Nerd Test yourself here!

Well, Gene Logsdon does it again, this time with an entertaining and thoughtful piece on “bootleg” raw milk. You just gotta love this. Mr. Logsdon pokes fun at the “Milk Police” whose mandate has nothing to do with public health.

Selling raw milk, or bootleg milk as I call it, is a crime in some states, if you can believe that. If you break the law, the Milk Police will come knocking at your door. Mind you, they don’t care if you drink it or give it away. You just can’t sell it, which leads me to believe that they are more worried about protecting the monopoly of the pasteurized milk industry than protecting health.

As most of you probably know, dairy farmers who want to sell raw milk to people who want to drink raw milk, get around the prevailing power of the Milk Police by what they call herd share agreements. Customers buy shares in the cows and so as part owners, they are actually drinking their own milk. This subterfuge gives the Milk Police conniption fits. They issue woeful press releases that lead one to believe that civilization will collapse if people are allowed to drink raw milk, even though 28 states now allow it to be sold. The Milk Police try to take producers of herd-share milk to court like they were moonshiners.

Now, I’ve talked about this attitude thing before, but Mr. Logsdon’s blogpost has me thinking about it in a new way. I can’t even really explain how so, but it has to do with the sustained, cheerful humor and the simple choice not to grant the “Milk Police” any legitimacy. It’s a gentle, knowing, thoroughly enjoyable (and enjoyed!) laugh in their faces.

And somehow, it leaves me feeling renewed. Because it’s too easy for me, I realize, to become angered, outraged, offput by the actions of the various Police around today, mushrooming as they are. Mr. Logsdon (and others like him) offer delightful reminders that it doesn’t have to be so.

Hell, no. On the contrary, he gives me a friendly nudge as if to twinkle, “You’re free to dance through life even if ‘they’ expect you to cringe and crawl.”

And it occurs to me that the sustained twinkle is a result, and a function, of long practice and of endlessly repeated acquaintance with the tactics of the other side. It’s grace, born of great wisdom, repeated effort, and formidable patience – with a dash of Outlawish aliveness to spice up the mix.

While blogsurfing this morning – and I apologize but I don’t recall now whose blog had the link – I found this goofy gem: The Evil Monkey Guide to Creative Writing.


Unfettered, uncensored, unapologetically silly imagination! YES!!! Gimme somma dat!

This guy Jeff VanderMeer is totally whack. I love it. 😛

Just the juice I needed. Frankly, my dears, I exhaust myself to no end trying to be so proper, neutral, correct and linear in my writing – fiction and non.

Damnit, it’s a relief to feel like I can have FUN with writing. I’d forgotten that feeling and I have no idea why or how I did so.

On this same train of thinking, and speaking of evil monkeys, I wish I could write like that crazy galoot George Potter does. 😛

Halfway through the day of our yard sale, a truck and trailer pulled up to the curb, the trailer labeled “Antique Auction” or some such. Thunder pointed it out excitedly to me – “Didn’t you want to sell that antique bureau?” Omigosh! We got so busy with the early birds that I forgot all about bringing it outside! So I ran into the house and wheeled it to the door.

Well, the dealer, a friendly fellow, took a look and made an offer. I dickered, and we settled, and moved the piece into his trailer. And off he went.

Four hours later, the sale over and the leavings packed neatly for charity, I lay down to rest. And then it hit me. Continue reading

As you may know, Thunder sold his house just recently. And before moving out, we figured it made sense to declutter and dump a bunch of belongings. (Especially since we’ve just moved out of a 1300-square-foot house into a recreational vehicle and a storage unit!)

Well, neither of us had done the yard sale thing before. Didn’t even have much of a yard to host it in. But we did some asking around and followed what good advice we got. An ad, good signs, clearly marked prices, all that. Got up at five a.m. to be ready by 7:45. and even that wasn’t early enough.

We figured we might pull in a couple hundred bucks, maybe $200 after expenses. Continue reading