Thursday, September 28, 2006

Kent Calls for More Phone Booths

(Metropolis) Showing support for vanishing telephone booths, Metropolis resident Clark Kent is lobbying on behalf of Superman to give the Man of Steel a place to change his clothes. “Nobody calls from phone booths
anymore because they use cell phones. The phone companies are doing away with booths."

When asked why it has to be a phone booth for Superman, Kent became agitated. “Have you ever had to change clothes in a Wal-Mart bathroom? Last week Superman slipped on a dirty Wet Wipe left by some guy changing his kid’s diaper on that little table thingy. Superman tweaked his knee. That gave criminal mastermind Lex Luther just enough time to mass produce the new Paris Hilton CD.”

Kent said Superman no longer changes in his car. “He ripped his cape on the park brake and had to take the subway. Unfortunately it kept him from getting to Tom Cruise before Braniac did. You’ve seen in the news what happened to Tom’s personality because of that.”

“My friend Jimmy told me that Superman should change in the back seat next time, but come on. He’s Superman. He’s too big to change in a Ford Focus anyway.”

His girlfriend suggested another route, encouraging Kent to make a proposition to the cell phone companies. “She said maybe Superman could get a free cell phone with unlimited minutes. In exchange he’d be the spokesman and everybody would call him the ‘Man of Cell.’ I said no way. This is an issue of principle and Superman is full of it. Principle I mean—he’s full of principle.”

Kent, a former freelance reporter, now travels the country encouraging Americans to give up their cell phones and step into a phone booth.

The “Cell Out for Superman” campaign is hitting a few snags. In Burlington, Colo., he arrived late to his scheduled appearance at the Nacho Hut. A small crowd waited nearly two hours before leaving for chess practice. Kent didn’t know what to do. “My car broke down on the Kansas City turnpike and I didn’t have a way to let anybody know.”

Despite the setbacks Kent believes his message is gaining traction. He often refers to “Phone Booth,” the Colin Farrell box office thriller released in 2002. “Sure, it scared people enough to never enter a phone
booth again, but at least it’s a start. We’re sitting here in the Nacho Hut talking about a phone booth instead of a cell phone. Right? The tide is turning. Cell phones are definately on their way out.”

Friday, September 22, 2006

Weekly Review 9/22/06

  • A maker of customized caskets signed a licensing agreement with Major League Baseball, so fans can show team loyalty even after death. Currently, coffins for the Kansas City Royals are unavailable because of a large order by team members at the beginning of the season.

  • The U.S. Census Bureau reports that next month the population in America will top 300 million. Naturally, they will each stand in front of me at Wal-Mart paying with pennies.

  • Astronomers spotted a new ring around Saturn. They say it’s from hard water deposits.

  • Trying to ease tensions for comments that offended Muslims, Pope Benedict invited officials from Muslim countries to meet next week. He’s serving spinach.

  • Hezbollah’s leader called a rally to celebrate the “victory” over Israel. In a related story, the Washington Generals celebrated their victory over the Harlem Globetrotters.

  • Agents in Louisiana found marijuana on Willie Nelson’s tour bus. The incident delayed his Bong Voyage Tour.

  • A Polish woman faces up to three years in prison for growing marijuana to calm the nerves of her cow. Police grew suspicious after seeing the cow buy seventeen cases of Doritos...and board Willie Nelson's tour bus.

Friday, September 15, 2006

Weekly Review 9/15/06

  • Male researchers released a study suggesting that men are more intellegent than woman. The scientists were unavailable for further comment because they were gathering their belongings off the front lawn.

  • Archaeologists say that a stone block found in Mexico may bear the oldest writing in the New World. The inscription translates to, “Ted Kennedy for Senator!”

  • President Bush called on Congress to give U.S. intelligence agencies the “tools needed” to interrogate suspected terrorists. Vice President Dick Cheney agreed, but said the only tools necessary for interrogations are a ball-peen hammer and a pair of pliers.

  • In Vienna, a group trying to clear the streets of dog droppings is urging residents to record how many droppings they see within a five minute period and report the figure. Meanwhile, sales of Vienna Sausages plummeted.

  • Astronomers say the largest planet ever found orbiting another star received a name. They call it Rosie O.

  • In Green Bay, a pig withstood taser shots from police and eluded authorities for more than an hour after wandering onto a major highway. For Packer fans this is nothing new. They’re used to seeing a drive stop when people don’t catch the pigskin.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

It's Cheesy

I saw a friend the other day and noticed he gained a lot of weight since we last met. Then I realized it’s more serious. He said his growing family outgrew their half-ton pickup!

In retrospect, I think it’s me with the food issues. It appears that at a deeper level my adult life is that of constant hunger.

In high school I was the cream of the crop. Then I was a flash in the pan. Regarding my lofty goals, a teacher told me the best way to eat an elephant is to take one bite at a time. I took the advice with a grain of salt. She didn’t know that sometimes I’m a ham. I can dish it out but I can’t take it. I bite off more than I can chew, especially when I bite the hand that feeds me. Then I upset the apple cart and turn beet-red from embarrassment.

After college I lost a great paying job. I went from feast to famine. The gravy train ended. I have no beef with them because it was my fault. I put all my eggs in one basket. It was a recipe for disaster. I was in the breadline because I had no dough. I waffled and fudged. I became a couch potato. I drank like a fish. I ate like a horse. Then, I got fed up. I was in a real pickle—until somebody saved my bacon. I started to see the glass as half full. I found a new job. It paid even more cabbage. I was pleased as punch, which made me cool as a cucumber.

It gets even better. I found a real dish. She’s the apple of my eye—the salt of the earth. We’re like two peas in a pod. Now we have a son—the fruit of my loins. Who says you can’t have your cake and eat it too?

In a nutshell, I’m always hungry. There’s no disputing this. The proof is in the pudding. And that drives me nuts.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Looking for Tom Osborne

Writing from Broken Bow, NE. I passed a sign on the way up that said "Bump 500 feet." The sign was accurate because that's about how far the car went after I hit the bump.

Anyway, a couple of projects are in the works. First, I've been asked to be a guest contributer on, a new creation of comedian Chris Quimby and cartoonist Josh Alves. As a guest I get to control the remote and won't have to do dishes. Chris and Josh are very talented guys with squeaky clean material.

I've also been writing for a cartoonist in Florida. I'll write more on that later. When we sell something. Like a cartoon.

Monday, September 11, 2006

Forgive Me for not Laughing This Morning

I would be remised if I didn’t acknowledge the innocent lives lost on this day 5 years ago. For those still grieving the loss and to those of you in New York my heart still aches.

I’ve always believed that America was able to stand up and get going again in part because of comics--professional or not. Laughter renews the human spirit. And without any spirit we might as well be dead.

Friday, September 08, 2006

Weekly Review 9/8/06

  • Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld underwent surgery to repair a torn rotator cuff on his left shoulder. The tear is from an old athletic injury. Liberals say he threw too many curves.

  • Fidel Castro boasts that he lost 41 pounds since he had surgery. The bulk of the weight disappeared when his brother Raul removed the pillow from Fidel’s face.

  • A Georgia school district is piloting a system in which children pay for lunches by scanning their fingerprints. The children complain that the scanner isn’t big enough for their noses.

  • A Japanese man was arrested at 2:00 a.m. for stealing a female mannequin from a display window. She was a one-night stand.

  • Philadelphia police are hoping someone can identify a man accused of four separate flashing incidents. Currently, the details are minimal.

  • Four prisoners in an El Salvador jail wrapped cell phones and accessories in plastic and inserted them deep into their rectums. Defense attorneys say it makes sense because that’s where their heads were anyway.

  • The government is fining the American Red Cross $4.2 million for violating blood safety laws, stemming from recalls carried out between 2003 and 2005. Blood recalls? I thought it was a pain when they recalled my Ford Focus.

Monday, September 04, 2006

Cut and Run

People tell me that the bank holding my mortgage can take my house if I miss a few payments. "After all," they say, "technically you don't it. The bank owns it."

Because the bank owns the dwelling place for my family, I call the bank president every week to inform him that he needs to mow the lawn at our house. I mean his house. After all, technically I don’t own it. The bank owns it. Apparently he doesn’t get the messages I leave with his assistant. Or his wife and children. Because his Toro has yet to meet my bluegrass, I opted to send a letter to the owner of my home:

Dear Homeowner Owner,

We have been attempting to reach you for several weeks. This letter is official notification that the lawn where we live is getting extremely long and mowing on your part is past due.

This is not our first incident of concern with your institution. When our basement flooded you refused to pay for the damage. You didn’t even help clean up. When high winds uprooted a tree, you ignored our plight for a new tree house. Despite your lack of reparation, we stayed with your bank. However, our patience is wearing thin because you choose to ignore the length of the grass. We took steps to address the issue and received counsel from Floyd, owner and operator of Floyd’s Nursery and Cappuccino Hut. He is not somebody you want to anger. As a Certified Scott's Lawn representative, Floyd says that mulching is out of the question. You have to bag it.

As a result, you are hereby notified that you have one (1) week to contact a resident of this home to make mowing arrangements. Please leave a message if we don’t answer the phone. We might be in the yard searching for our son again. He vanished in the backyard earlier this month (he’s only fifty two inches tall) while looking for his whiffle ball. Only his innate survival skills and a pink lawn flamingo saved him from starvation.

We will work to maintain this relationship, but we expect you to meet us half way. Frankly, we are embarrassed for you that you own a lawn tall enough to attract cows from nearby pastures. It is our hope that as the technical homeowner you take a little more pride in its appearance so we can work together in the future—especially the last Saturday in September as it’s our turn to host the neighborhood barbeque.


Doug Johnson

P.S. Please note a forthcoming letter regarding your automobile that I drive. It needs new tires.

Friday, September 01, 2006

Weekly Review 9/1/06

  • In his Dallas debut Thursday, Terrell Owens received a standing ovation. It allowed fans to get a better angle when they threw beer cups at him.

  • At his wedding reception, a Boston man got drunk, assaulted an officer and went to jail. Ironically, the groom now resides in a cell where he is the bride.

  • The British Hedgehog Preservation Society persuaded McDonalds in London to change its McFlurry cup lid to one that won’t trap hedgehogs in discarded cups. The Society is now petitioning heartless pranksters who refer to the ice cream treat as a McFurry.

  • Ernesto slipped into a tropical depression, prompting a 24-hour suicide watch.