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Archive for the category “satire”

Last minute tips for a happy Mother’s Day

These tips are offered as curiosities only and with no express or implied warranty of any kind.

  1. For heaven’s sake, don’t force mama so slave over a hot stove all day preparing her Mother’s Day dinner, especially if you forced her to go duck hunting, deer hunting, or fishing to get the prime ingredient. If she caught or shot something, clean it while she takes a bath and changes into suitable church-going clothes. Better yet, take her out to the nearest Outback Steakhouse. If mama’s petite, get her a Victoria’s Filet Mignon. If she’s hefty, get her the Slow-Roasted Prime Rib.
  2. Breakfast in bed is a nice touch as long as you make sure mama’s “decent” before you open the bedroom door. If your family doesn’t have a “safe word” that means “okay to come in the bedroom,” warn mama the night before that you’re bringing her breakfast. If you don’t know how to make a Denver omelet with a rasher of bacon, at least heat up some grits. (These come in little packets that are stirred into boiling water. Hard to mess this up.) Put a nice snapdragon or some other appropriate flower in a bud vase and don’t over-boil the coffee.
  3. Take mama to some place special during the afternoon. Treats my mama liked included professional wrestling, paintball games, and playing pool at the corner bar. Tip: all mamas are not alike. Success may vary.
  4. Write mama a poem. Limericks are ill-advised. Haiku are so short, she’ll think she’s only worth a few words. Sonnets are nice. If you can’t write your own or hire your state’s poet laureate to create one for your mama, steal something from a famous poet she’s never heard of.
  5. As evening comes and you and mama are sitting out on the front porch slamming down shots of vodka, sing mama a song. (As the popular Facebook meme reminds us, you’re the reason she drinks.) So, easy does it. Avoid songs like “Mama Don’t Allow,” “Roll Me Over in the Clover” and “Bang Bang Lulu.” Assuming you know how old your mama is, pick as song that would have been popular when she was a teenager. Do this yourself rather than lip-syncing to an old 78 rpm record.
  6. Apologize in advance (unless she’s already there) for the fact that you and your spouse plan to put her in a home when she becomes unable to live alone because you’re not a good enough son or daughter to care for her properly even if you wanted to. Explain that you and/or your spouse were so traumatized during childhood, that the last thing you need now is to re-create that by having mama come back to sit in your house and raise her eyebrows every time you stay up late and watch filthy movies.
  7. Get mama a gift she’s always wanted like a pump-action shotgun. If you guess wrong, I’m sure she’ll let you borrow the weapon. (My mama was more than happy to let me borrow the baseball gloves I got her for Mother’s Day when I was a kid.)
  8. If your mama is obese, give her a gift certificate to fat farm. (Don’t use the words “fat farm.”) If she gets pissed off, tell her you’re doing this for her health and want her to live long and prosper even though her later years might be spent in a home. You might also remind her that the reverend banned her from church after the pew collapsed when she sat down after singing “Amazing Grace.”
  9. Confess to your mama that you haven’t gotten syphilis from hookers as often as she thinks because (basically) you were trying to be a good son or daughter, but these things happen.
  10. Swear on a stack of Bibles (if necessary) to convince mama that her hair, dress, shoes, and makeup are absolutely perfect and that you want her to stop listening to those people from the other side of the tracks who think she looks like an old hag. Plus, even if she does, you, love her anyway.

The following people should be shot for the good of the country

. . .with a tranquilizer dart, perhaps. 

People who:

  • Run sites that offer free copies of an author’s books and then don’t respond to take-down notices.
  • Subscribe to authors’ newsletters to get a free book and then unsubscribe as soon as they get it.
  • Protest a book and/or want it removed from the library even though they’ve never read it.

    (Rum not included)

  • Post one-star reviews on Amazon and Goodreads because the author wore the wrong color shirt or because they accidentally bought a book in a genre they don’t normally read and feel like having a tantrum.
  • Find a way of introducing statements about their personal issues into Facebook status updates that have nothing to do with those issues.
  • Have Twitter feeds that are 99% SPAM.
  • Write blog posts about shooting people with tranquilizer darts because getting shot with a dart is a way of getting the drug without the prescription.
  • Believe that unknown authors (who actually need the income) should get $0.99 for the same kind of book that the rich, big-name author is selling for $15.00.
  • Think that movie stars who own three houses worth more than most people’s neighborhoods really care about liberal programs designed to help the poor.
  • Don’t drink Scotch and/or drink fruity drinks that taste like stale Kool-Aid.
  • Don’t understand how detrimental to the arts it is to defund NEA and NHA.
  • Don’t know the difference between interesting personal tidbits and TMI.
  • Spread quizzes on Facebook with titles like “What Native American Tribe Are You From?” or “What’s Your Scottish Name?”  like there’s some glory from an algorithm’s fake response.
  • Don’t realize today is Friday.


Traipsing some malware with me

Once there was a spammer who camped in a wordpress
Under  the  glare of a forbidden 403
And he sang as he started his trigger words spinning
Who’ll come a traipsing some malware with me.

Who’ll come a traipsing some malware, my phishes
Who’ll come a traipsing delicious malware with me
Traipsing malware under the nose of old AVG
Who’ll come a traipsing sneaky malware with me.

Down came an old codger logging on from a home
Up jumped the spammer and stole from him with glee
And he muttered TTFN as he stowed him in his sucker bag
Who’ll come a traipsing McAfee-resistant bots with me.

Who’ll come a traipsing some malware, my phishes
Who’ll come a traipsing delicious malware with me
Traipsing malware under the nose of old AVG
Who’ll come a traipsing sneaky malware with me.

Down came a Joomla riding on his firewall
Down came the silent filters one two three
Whose is that codger you’ve got in the sucker bag
You’ll soon be eating your shell code with me.

But the spammer he up and jumped into Akismet queue
Drowning himself beneath the forbidden 403
And his ghost can be heard as it sings in the wordpress
Who’ll come a traipsing some malware with me.


When he’s not waltzing Matilda, Campbell writes contemporary fantasy, satire, and magical realism.


‘Waste Into Print’ service now available for indie authors

Westport, CT, April 19, 2016 (Star-Gazer News Service)–Waste Into Print (WIP), a closely guarded publishing industry secret heretofore available only to bestselling mainstream authors at large publishers, has now been made available to small press and self-published authors. The automated writing assistant takes the characters, plots and themes of failed novels and transforms them into new works of fiction with no detectable relationship with their source material.

Grist for the mill. - Wikipedia photo

Grist for the mill. – Wikipedia photo

“Think of WIP as the ultimate recycling service,” said WIP founder and president Gordon Johnson. “Using physical books, e-books in multiple file formats, student exercises in MFA programs, and a few Pulitzer Prize winners for seasoning, we take the huddled masses of dead and dying words yearning to be free, and from them we create a new life.”

According to the backgrounder available to reporters at this morning’s champagne breakfast announcement, WIP was initially viewed as a service for famous writers who “felt blocked, were running behind schedule on contractually obligated deliveries of new material to their publishers or were overwhelmed by the trappings of fame and kept them writing even when they weren’t.”

While information about writers using the original WIP is confidential, industry insiders believe that the computer-generated books from Waste Into Print have spent an above average number of weeks on the New York Times bestseller list, have been favorably reviewed by major media outlets, and have won a high number of literary awards.

Although Johnson is a graduate of the former Famous Writers School, he said the WIP does not employ a “guiding faculty” to oversee his program.

wiplogo“It’s all in the algorithms,” he said. “Clients enter their preferred genre, style, length, target audience and ‘reads like’ and we hit WRITE-IT.  ‘Reads like’ is the name of the mainstream author whose style and approach most closely match the style and approach of the intended book. This feature allowed famous writers to keep sounding like themselves.”

The indie author’s version of the service, WIP-Lite, will have fewer features including ‘mandated synopsis.’ Johnson explained that while mainstream authors with multi-book contracts must often adhere to a synopsis or general plan for subsequent books in a series, indie authors don’t have this obligation. “Removing the feature makes WIP-LITE more economical and keeps the needs of the anticipated new client base from over-stressing the system,” Johnson said.

Johnson, who funded Waste Into Print by selling off his family’s 90% ownership in the National Embalming School, used the beta version of WIP to create his bestselling romance Torrid, Horrid and the thriller You Bleed for You.

“WIP-LITE is the totally green service for totally green authors,” Johnson said.

Story by Jock Stewart, Special Investigative Reporter





Daylight Savings Time Whistleblower Sent to Guantanamo for Attitude Adjustment

Washington, D.C, March 13, 2016, Star-Gazer News Service–The U.S. Citizens Attitude Adjustment Court, in a meeting held here today between 1:59 a.m. EST and 3:00 a.m. EDT found daylight savings time whistleblower Pequeño Tiempo guilty of leaking national temporal secrets and sentenced him to a one-to-five lightyear term at the United States Military Prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

DSTposterA terse government announcement released to the wire services stated that, “Tiempo wanted the country to fall back when it was time to spring forward and vice versa.”

Tiempo, an analyst at the Daylight Savings Time Administration (DSTA) leaked documents to the press at 2:00 a.m., November 1, 2015, showing that the daylight collected since the inception of daylight savings time has been borrowed by the government for military operations, security, crime prevention and cave exploration and is no longer available for its promised return to the American people.

A division within the Social Security Administration, DSTA was created by Congress to collect hours of daylight that U.S. citizens “would probably squander anyway” and then return it to them when they reached 95 years of age. The top secret documents leaked by Tiempo showed a pattern of daylight borrowing so massive that the agency’s warehouses are essentially dark.

With NASA’s help, scientists on board the International Space Station had attempted to “get ahead of the game” by grabbing extra daylight from the sunrises there that occur every 90 minutes.

DSTA Headquarters

DSTA Headquarters

According to Buzz Lightyear, CEO of the International Time Management Institute, “the Federal Government has acted just like the typical embezzler who convinces himself that he will be able to replace the money he stole before anyone notices it’s missing.”

Government spokesmen, using the aliases Dewey, Cheatham and Howe, said that the country’s surplus of light collected via the daylight savings time system is “top secret and cannot be divulged no matter how many little people end up reaching 95 only to discover there’s no light at the end of the tunnel.”

Before he was silenced, Tiempo told reporters that Americans are capable of investing their own time as they see fit without the government taking a portion of it and returning mere minutes on the hour.

Informed sources say that Tiempo will be confined to a dark room until he sees the light.

Jock Stewart, Special Investigative Reporter

Cleaning the spam queue is like mucking out a horse stall

“Mucking out a stall is the process of cleaning it by removing soiled bedding, old food, feces and urine. Horse stalls must be cleaned at least once a day when occupied by a horse. Stall cleaning is not a difficult task, but it does take time and physical effort to accomplish. The cleaner your stalls are, the healthier your horses will be.”

Pets on

A clean horse stall - Wikipedia photo

A clean horse stall – Wikipedia photo

Likewise, you’ll have a healthier blog that won’t spread had spam and other viral diseases throughout the Internet if you take a little time every day to wade into your blog’s spam queue with heavy boots and a pitchfork and get rid of the crap that’s been dropped there during the past 24 hours.

Healthy horses need clean stalls. Healthy blog visitors need clean spam queues. The blogger’s code of

Clean spam queue.

A clean spam queue.

ethics states that keeping a blog sanitized for the readers’ protection is a sacred duty and cannot be left to chance, much less ignored. We’ve all been to blogs with queues that look like a bad service station restroom. That kind of mess doesn’t exactly lure your back to the blog, does it? Whether you blog for business or pleasure, the spam queue makes a positive or negative statement about the kinds of products you sell or the kind of person you are.

Just this morning, for example, I found the following load of spam in the queue:


Tell me true, how would you feel if you stopped by my blog and stepped in that?

Spam Boots - Click on the graphic if you need a pair.

Spam Boots – Click on the graphic if you need a pair.

Quite likely, you would think I didn’t keep the place clean and tidy. Worse yet, you might think all of my material is delivered here by bots that scan the web and give you less than the very best.

Needless to say, I was happy to be wearing heavy duty boots this morning when I waded into the spam queue.

I sent the originator of that purportedly original content SPAM message a sternly worded e-mail explaining why I don’t need their services:


When I run a news release on this blog, you’ll see something like “from NPS Glacier National Park” at the beginning of the post. When I highlight another person’s blog post or news story, you’ll see a link to it. The rest of the time, this stuff is my stuff.

You may not know this, but when bloggers join the WordPress family, they swear on a stack of flash drives that they will keep their blogs germ and spam free: that’s your guarantee just as sure as the “sanitized for your protection” strip across the toilet seat in a quality hotel lets you know the housekeeping department cares about you.

Repeat after me: A clean spam queue is a happy spam queue.

Anything else is pretty much a crock.


New Jock front CVR full sizeAmong other things, Malcolm R. Campbell is the author of the comedy/satire “Jock Stewart and the Missing Sea of Fire.”





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