Brian J.’s Recycler Tour (III)

Apparently, twelve years ago, I quipped on Facebook:

Brian J. Noggle recommends you avoid tugging on Batman’s cape as well. To be honest, he’s more piquish than Superman.


  • In those days, what you put into Facebook appeared right next to your name, so I often phrased my posts as though my name was the subject in a sentence. It’s not that Brian J. often refers to himself in the first person. Although, I suppose, if you’ve read this blog for any length of time, you know I do.
  • Hmmm, twelve years ago, I used peckish instead of piquish. I have corrected it here in the Revised Second Edition of this quip.

Also, I need to footnote this humor.


You damn kids.

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Getting Along With Little Doggies

The Ozarks Multisport Club is holding its duathlon series in person this year, way up north of Springfield, so I shan’t attend this year as it would be an hour in the car each way before the suck occurs.

Since it’s not virtual, that also means that this little guy over on FR 190 will miss me as I won’t be passing by at speed every weekend.

Although, to be honest, he’s a bit lazy; its the cattle on the other side of the road that would run along the fence line inside the pasture that as I ran or rode by. Although, to be honest, it’s not just the horns one must fear.

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Life Lessons from Brian J.

I am trying to raise my boys to be men, which means I like to pass on important life lessons to them.

For example, I am teaching my children young men:

  • It is impossible to look tough while drinking through a straw. Humphrey Bogart would himself looked silly with a duck face as he tried to get the last of a frappé out of a plastic cup. When a drink comes with a straw, take it out and drink it like a man.
  • Beans can be any meal. I know, I know; when I was a kid, I did not have a taste for beans, but now that I am a man, I find that you can have beans for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. And you can mix in other leftovers with beans to stretch them out. I attribute this, of course, to I read The Grapes of Wrath.
  • Never, ever appear before your woman wearing nothing but socks. Especially black socks. Okay, they’re still a little young for this particular lesson, but it’s an important one.

Just a few little things, but they make adult life easier and better.

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Brian J.’s Recycler Tour

I can’t believe I wasted some of my best lines on Twitter and Facebook, making money for the Boy rather than as an attraction for you, gentle reader, to come here for the wit and make me money by clicking one of the (blocked) ads or the Amazon links, even though I was booted from the affiliate program when Amazon had tantrum about people making money in states that threatened to collect Internet sales taxes before they had a footprint in that state. Now, of course, Internet sales taxes are a fait accompli and Amazon has big footprints in the state, but when I applied for reinstatement, not enough people ordered through my affiliate link, so I got discharged a second time. Maybe I’ll try again when I get up to fifty readers a day consistently–they’re mostly search hits for old book reports anyway, the kind of place where an affiliate book link might make sense.

But I digress.

Apparently, I posted this gem on Facebook ten years ago:

Momma always said life is like a box of Kafka’s.

Now more than ever, ainna?

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Time To Resuscitate An Urban Legend As Journalism

It looks like all the news stories about Wuhan Flu Parties are a year old.

It’s time to resuscitate them as real news, but with an anti-vaxxer twist.

Homeschoolers Hold COVID Parties to Avoid Vaccines

Anti-vaccination religious homeschooling parents have begun holding COVID parties to infect their children so the poor abused cishet spawn can develop immunity without the benefit of a vaccine provided by President Joe Biden.

“I want my eight children to develop immunity the way Geezus intended,” said Rebecca Leah Christiansen, hostess at one such party in rural Arkansas.

C’mon, twenty-three-year-old Journalists. I’ve given you a head start!

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I Shall Also Spread The Misinformation

You know this is a joke. I know this is a joke. The Internet knows this is a joke.

You know who doesn’t know this is a joke?

The algorithms.

And those who have been programmed to believe that jokes are not jokes when you can use them against the person making the joke.

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We’re The Internet; We Know The Real Reason

Jennifer Aniston shares the meaning behind her ‘11 11’ wrist tattoo

I’ll be honest: I didn’t glean the “reason” from the article. Her birthday and the year her dog died?

C’mon, man. We’re the Internet. We know the real reason. If you draw a little line connecting the first and the second 1, and then the third and the fourth one, you know what you have? That’s right, two Hs. And what does that mean? You know what it means. Heil, Hitler! (I am not up on my German; what does ‘Heil’ actually mean? Should there be a comma between them or not?)

Oh, her friend has a matching tattoo, hey? Well, 1+1+1+1 plus 1+1+1+1 = 8. What’s the eighth letter of the alphabet? Aw, yeah, H. Times 2 friends. Don’t you see?

And the common stereotype is that people with English degrees are not good at math, but look how I solved this word problem!

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The Christmas Argument, Difficulty Level: EXPERT

Denis Leary’s No Cure For Cancer is a Christmas album or carol because he does have a character wish you a Merry F’n Christmas.

If you’re feeling particularly argumentative, you can also debate whether his The Ref is also a Christmas movie.

You’ll probably win that last argument easily, as most people won’t know what you’re talking about. Heck, I haven’t even seen that film, and I am sort of a Denis Leary fan. Well, I bought No Cure For Cancer on cassette when it was new and listened to it over and over on my near monthly drives from St. Louis to Milwaukee in my immediate post-college years. Enough so that I can remember bits of it when I’m brushing my teeth. Not with NyQuil, though.

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The Road Humor Not Taken

Yesterday, my beautiful wife had a meeting in town, so she volunteered to take the youngest to school. I decided that I would go to the gym anyway but a little earlier than I would were I to take him into school. As it happens, I was not leaving that much earlier–so the boy thought I was taking him to school. Even when I said I was not, he said I could just drop him on the way–it being Friday, he was eager to get to school because a fundraiser sells candy and snacks before school on Friday, and an extra couple of minutes in the morning would be that much more sugar he could consume before school. I declined, saying that I was not even going to be in the vicinity, taking instead a straight route to the YMCA, a more southern route east than would take me by his school.


I don’t know. I was lost in thought, I was lost in the metal, but I missed the highway entrance that would have spirited me to the gym ricky-tick. Instead, I took the next right, which is Battlefield Road. Which is the route to the school.

So I passed a block and a half south of the school anyway on my way to the gym.

It occurred to me as I neared the school that I could pull up to the front door, where the school employees with the thermometers await, and turn to the passenger seat, and then look in the back seat, and then drive off as though I had forgotten my son at home to amuse the custodians of the COVID protocols. Of course, my wife would arrive with the child a couple minutes later, and he could explain to them that I was going to the gym. After all, the people at the school have learned I have odd sense of humor.

I did not, though; I don’t know them that well. And, to be honest, I wanted to get to the pain awaiting me at the gym as soon as possible.

Two roads diverged on a morn, and I—
I took the one less likely to
get the Division of Family Services called on me.

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What The Old Timey People Mean When They Say

“I’m pleased as Ponch” means that they’re as happy as the character Francis “Ponch” Poncherello on the television series CHiPs.

Ponch was always smiling and telling jokes to end the episodes of the series. Or he was the good-natured object of humor. Regardless, a serious event ended on a light note. Every week.

This is the Internet, so you can cite this as a primary and incontrovertible source for this.

Fun fact: I did not learn to drive until I was twenty or twenty-one. To be honest, when I was in that age range of learning to drive, I was a bit terrified of the responsibility of driving a car. I attribute this to the opening of the television program CHiPs, which featured a great car crash to start or end each week.

Wait a minute, Brian J., don’t you also tell stories of driving your father back from the Black Oak Inn to your grandfather’s cabin in the upper peninsula when you were thirteen? Also true. I was probably terrified the whole way.

You know, a lot of movies and television series had great cinematic car accidents in them around that time. I’m not sure how to explain it to kids. Was it a hate relationship with cars spurred by the oil shocks? Was it that old cars to destroy cinematically were cheap? Hey, I don’t know, man. It was the twentieth century, which by now is as real to many people as the seventeenth.

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The Knock Knock Fairy Strikes Again

Another fresh new knock-knock joke from Nogglestead:

Knock, knock.
Who’s there?
Yeah, how did you know? 1, 2, 3…. Who are you, who who, who who? (I really want to know) Who are you, who who, who who?

Maybe I heard that one before and did not actually make it up.

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That’s Not Funny

We have, on occasion, shared knock knock and other jokes at the dinner table, and most of them are not especially funny, which makes us laugh the harder.

I mean, my oldest used to memorize them from joke books and retell them. Then, my youngest, who did not grasp humor really, would try his own, and we’d get something like:

Knock, knock.
Who’s there?
Boo who?
Boo YOU!

That brought tears to my eyes, and I could not stop laughing, because that has an actual knock-knock joke punchline, and he did not use it.

Friends of ours related how their children made up their own non sequitur punch lines that also involved giant chickens in some fashion; at Nogglestead, the giant chickens at the door were doing crazy things and ruining your property values. These, too, punch above their actual humor in how much we laugh at them.

Last night, I debuted a new one I wrote, well, last night:

Knock, knock.
Who’s there?
Rookie law enforcement official on my first no-knock raid. Oh, dammit!

Nobody laughed, so I guess that’s another one to not send to Reader’s Digest.

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When Life Gives You A Snake Skeleton, Make Snake Skeleton Quips

The other evening driving out of Nogglestead, we frightened a couple of turkey vultures from their bounty at the end of the driveway. I assumed the hawks had gotten and dropped another bird, but when I went to the mailbox on foot, I saw what they had been picking at.

I wondered if it might be the remains of the famous Ozarkian giant carnivorous, venomous centipedes, but it’s actually a snake skeleton. Given that it’s picked pretty clean, they probably dragged an old skeleton out of the ditch to pick at.

But when presented with a snake skeleton, of course I had to take a picture and put a wry comment on Facebook. But a snake skeleton yields more quips than a single Facebook post could provide.

Think of this as a multiple choice quiz. Try to guess the quip I actually went with on Facebook and post your own in the comments.

  • Can anyone identify this kind of snake? It kind of looks like a diamond-backed water snake, but I’m not sure.
  • Does anyone need a snake skeleton? I have an extra.
  • When snake is served at Nogglestead, not a scrap goes to waste!
  • For proper snake broth, remember to simmer the snake carcass for two hours or more.

Strangely enough, there’s enough boy in me yet that I have the urge to do something with the skeleton other than toss it in the ditch on the other side of the road. Instead, I will probably ignore it until it gets crushed by passing cars or disappears–possibly due to the intervention of actual boys present in the household. I’ll let you know if I find it in their rooms in a couple years when cleaning them after they move out.

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