Showing posts from June 1, 2008

'80s Flashback: Rondo soda

Friday is here again, so it's time for another '80s Flashback.

Before a word from our sponsor, here are the recent '80s Flashbacks:

'80s Flashback: Roller skating
'80s Flashback: Garbage Pail Kids
'80s Flashback: Just Say No
'80s Flashback: Freddy Krueger
'80s Flashback: Atari
'80s Flashback: OP corduroy shorts
'80s Flashback: Parachute pants
'80s Flashback: Rambo cartoon
'80s Flashback: Psyche!
'80s Flashback: Jim and Tammy Faye
'80s Flashback: Avoid the noid
'80s Flashback: Mary Lou Retton
'80s Flashback: One night in Bangkok
'80s Flashback: Adams Atoms
'80s Flashback: Don't you forget about me

OK. This week's flashback is brought to you by the series of "Choose Your Own Adventure" books that were popular in the '80s (The Cave of Time, at right, was one of them). At different points in the story, you had to decide what action you wanted the character to take. One choice would lead to success, the other to f…

I've now got 17 Tom Thumb Reward Cards

Just an estimation, obviously, but it's not an exaggeration. Tom Thumb is not the grocery store my family usually goes to, but it's on my way home from work, and if I need to pick something up, I'll stop by.

Each time, it seems, the item I want to buy is about a dollar less expensive for people who have a Reward Card. So I tell the checkout person that I want to sign up for a Reward Card so that I can get the discount.

He or she then hands me a registration form that I don't want to spend time filling out. It usually sits in my car for a couple of weeks and then gets tossed out. I could just fill out the form, I guess, but I just don't want to. It's partly from laziness, but moreso from the fact that I don't want to have to sign up for a Reward card, or an Extra Care card, or a VIP card, or whatever kind of card at every place I shop.

One of these days, I'll fill one out. But I'm in no hurry. Tom Thumb always has plenty of Reward Card applications avai…

Meltdown in the office

OK, Joe. It's time for your evaluation. First of all, you seem to have some anger issues. And we cannot have you breaking office equipment anymore, OK?

Actually, I'm not sure if this ridiculous office tirade is real or staged.

But it's impressive. And here's a second angle that was shot with a cell-phone camera.

Another Machete Attack, Part IV

Another excellent reason not to have a machete lying around your house:

Your teenage son might threaten you with it in a dispute over curfew.

Wait, it was actually two machetes.

That's one more than was used when a man attacked his friend with a machete over a case of Bud Ice.

Sorry, you can't name your daughter Elvis

Last year, a Swedish couple decided to name its daughter "Metallica." Yes, it's hard to believe anyone would want to name a girl after a heavy-metal band, but it's harder to believe Swedish authorities rejected the application.

Anyway, after a long battle, the parents were allowed to name their daughter Metallica. (Maybe the parents threatened alternatives such as Megadeth and Slayer).

But now, the Swedish government has rejected the name choice for another couple, who want to name their daughter "Elvis." Again, weird name choice for a girl. But still, should the government have the power to put the kabash on a name?

I'm glad I live in a country where the government doesn't meddle with our name choices. In the good ol' USA, we can name our kids Audio Science, Dixie Dot or Fifi Trixibell and it's not considered child abuse.

Woman trapped by technology

A woman in Utah got locked in her car last week and had to call police to help her get out.

Check this out:

When police arrived, they found the woman sitting in the car, unable to get herself out. She couldn’t hear the officers instructions through the rolled-up windows so she motioned to them to call her on her cell phone, according to police.

Her battery had died, so the power locks wouldn't work. So the police called her cell phone and told her how to manually unlock the door by sliding the lock switch over.

My favorite part of the story is the accompanying graphic that says "Trapped by technology."

Actually, I think she was trapped by something else.

Tatum O'Neal thanks the cops

Yearbook spell-check turns ugly

The spelling theme continues, and ends, with this item:

A computer spell-checker run amok christened several Pennsylvania high school students with new -- and in some cases unflattering -- last names.

Middletown Area High School's yearbook listed Max Zupanovic as "Max Supernova," Kathy Carbaugh as "Kathy Airbag" and Alessandra Ippolito as "Alexandria Impolite," just to name a few.

Pretty funny, at least if you're not involved. Back when I was a copy editor for the sports section, I accidentally hit "replace" instead of "ignore" during a spell check of a high school football story. Each instance of the word "Poteet" -- as in Mesquite Poteet High School -- changed to potato. (I did correct it before the story made the paper.)

Anyway, back to the yearbook story. I thought this was an interesting comment from the yearbook's publisher:

"It happens all the time, every year," Patrick said. "Look at any yearbook…

Responses to "Spelling out success"

A couple of responses to this morning's column, "Spelling out success." ...

Loved your column on spelling. Good insights. I hear the music kids listen to today (hip-hop, rap), if one can really call it that (I’m a 1975 HS grad), & wonder if anyone has a chance. Even worse, the internet & text messaging has relegated spelling & language to acronyms & phonetic shortcuts (admittedly, I too use for expediency). In addition, spelling is not emphasized in today’s school curriculums.

In my business, or anyone’s business for that matter, writing & communications skills are sorely lacking in the general work force. I am constantly amazed at the lack of verbiage, spelling, & sentence structure abilities my company’s support staffs use in proposals, etc. I even go as far to instruct some of them to forward the documents to me first, in order to peruse for typos & sentence structure.

O wel, alass wii reep the winfall of emfasizing stewdints ‘feel’ good abowt…

Humor Me: Spelling out success

The Dallas Morning News

Greetings, youth of the world. I come in peace.

I admit that I come from a different world - the over-age-30 world that is confused by nose rings and the trendiness of visible underwear - but you have no reason to fear a lecture or condescending tone. As I said, I come in peace.

Even better, I come to defend you from the members of my Country Time Lemonade world who say your Mountain Dew demographic isn't very swift in the classroom. I'm here to give you a break from the know-it-all adults who claim that you don't know current events, show no appreciation for history and are lacking skills in math, science and proper use of a belt.

But first, the bad news. Some of you truly aren't so swift in the classroom. Some of you don't know the basics that I learned in high school, such as the exact year when George Washington led U.S. troops across the Delaware River to defeat the Nazis with an atomic bomb.

For those of you who don't kn…