Garbage! (A Happy Dog Song)

My dog was a little bit frisky
As we went for our evening walk
And it might be the moon, or the whisky
But I swear I could hear the pup talk
My pooch wasn’t sleepy, nor hungry
He’s well rested, and recently fed—
Well then what, of all things, was the matter?
And so help me, here’s what my dog said:

Oh, please, can we roll in some garbage?
Can we wallow in filth for a bit?
As an eau-de-toilette, it’s the best you can get
Can we please roll around in some shit?
I love how it feels, the saran wrap and peels,
The aroma of chicken and fish
Oh, please, can we roll in some garbage?
Won’t you please grant your doggie his wish!

Then he smiled and he puckered his eyebrows
Did that thing where he cocks his cute head
He was doing his best to be fetching
But I wasn’t so easily led
So he whined and he wagged, and he wiggled,
But he wasn’t quite making it plain
He could tell that I wasn’t persuaded
So my puppy implored me again:

Oh, please, can we roll in some garbage?
There’s some stinky stuff here on the lawn
And I think I smell skunk, such a wonderful funk
We should hurry, before it’s all gone!
How could anyone think it’s a bad kind of stink?
When it’s all of the things I adore?
Oh, please, can we roll in some garbage?
I won’t ask you for anything more!

He was asking so very politely
With that puppy-dog look in his eyes
So I stopped for a bit and considered
And you know, he deserved a surprise
We were passing some odorous trash bags
When I told him “ok, we can stop”
And I opened a bag and I dumped it,
And we both rolled around in the slop!

Come join us, and roll in some garbage!
In coffee grounds, fish heads, and slime
Squirm around, if you please, in some old moldy cheese
Cos it’s really a wonderful time!
You won’t really know, till you give it a go,
What it’s like to be happy and free
Come join us, and roll in some garbage!
Have fun with my puppy and me!

Wolf: “Do You Thank The Lord?”

It’s so annoying when tornado victims don’t follow the script, isn’t it?

Wolf: “…we’re happy you’re here; you guys did a great job. And I guess you gotta thank the Lord, right? Do you thank the Lord? For that split-second decision?”

Survivor: “I… I… I’m actually an atheist.”

Wolf: “Oh, you are! … But you made the right call.”

Survivor: “Yep; we are here. And I don’t, I don’t blame anyone for thanking the Lord”

Wow, and she doesn’t seem at all angry at God, either. Darned atheists, don’t they know the script?

Cuttlecap tip to Anonymous, via twitter.

The Promise Of Spring (Yeah… Promises, Promises)

The trees are not budding
The grass is still brown
The remnants of snowbanks
Lay all around town
The flowers aren’t blooming
Except one or two
But there, in the distance,
A brief flash of blue?

There’s rain in the forecast
And that’ll bring mud
Some seasons are lovely
But this one’s a dud
It’s this way for ages,
A very strange thing,
But one—just one—bluebird,
And, suddenly… Spring!

bluebird

Yeah, it’s pretty gray in Cuttletown. The green in the background is from evergreens, not new leaves. But this morning (it rained last night) it was as if the birds had all arrived at once. Songs I haven’t heard in months, old familiar friends back from points south.

The winter birds, with the exception of the jays and the cardinals, have been studies in black, white, and grey. Even the goldfinch was wearing winter colors, and barely recognizable. So when I saw this bluebird, I had to check to be sure it wasn’t a trick of the light and yet another junco. But no! Actual eastern bluebird! So Spring is here!

Which I’ll keep telling myself for a few more weeks until the leaves and flowers start arriving.

Success!!

So today at the store, I got back 60 cents in change. All well and good, but when I grabbed the quarters to put them in the pile for de-godding, I noticed that one of them looked a little different. “In [smudge] We Trust”, it read, unless my eyes deceived me.

success

Yes! Now, I had never used any quarters at that store, so this must have come from a parking meter, or from the little cafe near my office, or from the UNICEF box at Halloween. Not from a busker–they always got dollar coins, and always more than one (even the lousy ones got 2 bucks minimum–I kept telling myself, it’s not my money to spend, it’s our money to put in circulation).

This coin does look like one of mine, but of course there is another, even better possibility–that there are more of us out there, de-godding coins that will be around for decades.

Running Out Of Time! (Get Your Cuttlefish Valentines Here!)

Dammit. I intended to space these out, but life got in the way.

I did get to post the Evolutionary Biology Valentine (and its additional verses), but that was it.

Now, all I can do (since it’s already Valentines Day in parts of the world) is a data dump. I suspect, though, that you will detect a pattern. (spoiler: the pattern says I am not a reductionist!)

Science of Love (a Valentine)

A Scientific Valentine

Sonnet 116.1 (a Shakespeare parody, opposing reductionism)

A Reproductive Message (a song, based on an evolutionary psychology paper. Context at the link.)

What do women want? (A valentine) Despite the title, this is far less valentine and far more a comment on a particular article. Again, context at the link.)

Heart In A Jar. Remember when they made a heart (in a jar) out of stem cells and the cellular equivalent of duct tape? I do. These verses took that achievement and used it as a springboard. I don’t recommend these as real valentines, but if you have a special someone these really work for… consider yourself incredibly fortunate.

There may be a few more here and there, but those are all I can recall.

Happy Valentines Day to you and yours!

To The Editor…

To the editors and readers:

I am writing to respond to a letter from December; one that clearly went beyond any measure of civility in how it framed its views, so I’m writing in rebuttal, so the citizens can choose.

Let me first list my credentials, and define my expertise, so you’ll know I’m not some moron who just wants to state his piece. I’m an engineer, designer, and a builder, you should know; it’s my aerospace technology that made our missiles go! When it comes to rocket science, all those people are my peers. And I’ve studied Holy Scripture, too, for over forty years.

In my personal opinion, see, the courts have got it wrong, and we should have taught creation in our high schools all along. Since it isn’t only Christians backing Genesis’ report, it’s not favoring religion, so it ought to please the court!

And I hardly dare to mention, but I will, cos I’ve resolved, that our modern science classes should not say that we’ve evolved! It’s a theory—just a a theory—and it’s quite a nasty job to imagine we’re descended from some ancient swampy blob! Now, I hear there’s tons of data, but I think the truth you’ll find is that evolution happens, but within a given kind; man has changed across millennia, in stature and in shape, but he’s never been a monkey, and he’s never been an ape!

There are sources that support me! There are books and books galore; you can find them by the dozen at your local Christian store! If you’re not the type for reading, why, they also come on tapes—you can listen while you’re driving, how we didn’t come from apes.

But enough of this digression; I’ll return now to my thread, to the letter from December, and the nasty things it said; it complained about the sneaking of religion into schools, which the author wrongly stated was against our nation’s rules. See, you simply can’t ignore it; you can’t do it; no one can, cos the science says religion is how everything began.

Sincerely…

Original letter here, at the Fort Wayne News-Sentinel. I think I actually used to get that paper, once upon a time. On Sundays, anyway.

Or for you purists who like end-stopped lines…

To the editors and readers: I am writing to respond
To a letter from December; one that clearly went beyond
Any measure of civility in how it framed its views,
So I’m writing in rebuttal, so the citizens can choose.

Let me first list my credentials, and define my expertise,
So you’ll know I’m not some moron who just wants to state his piece;
I’m an engineer, designer, and a builder, you should know,
It’s my aerospace technology that made our missiles go
When it comes to rocket science, all those people are my peers.
And I’ve studied Holy Scripture, too, for over forty years.

In my personal opinion, see, the courts have got it wrong
And we should have taught creation in our high schools all along.
Since it isn’t only Christians backing Genesis’ report
It’s not favoring religion, so it ought to please the court!

And I hardly dare to mention, but I will, cos I’ve resolved,
That our modern science classes should not say that we’ve evolved!
It’s a theory—just a a theory—and it’s quite a nasty job
To imagine we’re descended from some ancient swampy blob!
Now, I hear there’s tons of data, but I think the truth you’ll find
Is that evolution happens, but within a given kind;
Man has changed across millennia, in stature and in shape,
But he’s never been a monkey, and he’s never been an ape!

There are sources that support me! There are books and books galore,
You can find them by the dozen at your local Christian store!
If you’re not the type for reading, why, they also come on tapes—
You can listen while you’re driving, how we didn’t come from apes.

But enough of this digression; I’ll return now to my thread,
To the letter from December, and the nasty things it said;
It complained about the sneaking of religion into schools
Which the author wrongly stated was against our nation’s rules.
See, you simply can’t ignore it; you can’t do it; no one can.
Cos the science says religion is how everything began.

Losing My Religion In A Major Way

Well, a major key, actually. Via Open Culture, a bit of computer rejigging by MajorScaledTV, turns a familiar minor-key song… weird:

Sure, pretty much everybody will prefer the original, but this is a neat exercise. I just wonder how many times I will have to listen to it before my eyelid stops twitching.

(Ok, you want real weirdness? The Doors’ classic “Riders On The Storm”, converted to major key. Truly creepy.)

________________________________________________

My new plan… is to listen to this until it sounds normal. Then, listen to the original again, to see if it is immediately better, or if it just sounds weird.

Not Sad, Just Amused

I got a payment from Lulu today (somewhere in the low double digits), representing my Christmas revenue from my books. Seven people got a copy of one of my books–in four countries on two continents! Which is really cool, actually. Ok, three of them got free copies (word to the wise–this means if you look in the right place, volumes one and two can be got for free), so a total of four people paid for my book this past Christmas season. And I love them for it.

You don’t get rich in the rhyme business. I figure I have earned roughly a dollar per original verse since moving here (excluding limericks, and excluding stuff from the old blog, the inclusion of either would bring the per-verse [not perverse] revenue significantly lower). This has allowed me to buy a few cephalopodmas gifts for the family I would not have otherwise been able to, and that is just fine.

But if any of you happen to be philanthropic billionaires looking for a tax dodge…

I’d shill for a shilling
But no one is willing
To pay for the things that I write.
I’d rant and I’d holler
For minimum dollar
But no one is offering, quite.
A couple of euros
To stuff in my bureau’s
Sufficient for verses like these;
Though some call it whoring,
I’m begging–imploring–
Come, sully my principles, please!
If someone would shell out,
I’d promise to sell out–
My standards, I’ll keep in my purse–
For now, though, I’m sighing
Cos no one is buying…
And all I can write is Free Verse.

Mind you, that one is from the old blog, so I don’t count it as earning me a cent. Oh, and the books are available at the “cuttlestuff” link at the top of this page, and it won’t bother me a bit if you hunt around for the free ones.

I *Told* You I Have The Best Commenters…

As a public service for those who read the posts, but don’t look at comments, I want to show off some of the songwriting abilities of commenters “badgersdaughter” and “zekehoskin”. I had invited readers to contribute their own verses to “What did you do in the war (against Christmas)?“…

From badgersdaughter:

I sent my love to the War Against Christmas,
I sent my love to the War!
It’s been cold, it’s been hard;
He maxed out our last card–
And we’ve never been maxed out before!
‘Next the half-set-up tree
I weep one bitter plea:
Will he come home to help with decor?
I sent my love to the War Against Christmas,
When will he return from the War?

and

Mother, I’m off to the War Against Christmas–
Mother, I’m off to the War!
Oh Mother, don’t cry–
With the angels I fly;
“God and country”, my duty I swore:
But I’m weary and sick,
For old General Nick
Left a coal in our esprit-de-corps.
Mother, I’m off to the War Against Christmas,
Mother, I’m off to the War!

And from zekehoskin:

Are you still fighting the War Against Christmas?
Are you still fighting the War?
Are you sticking your neck
Out for President Beck
And the faith that – by law – we adore?
The Earth is still young,
All the atheists hung*
And history’s really a bore -
Are you still fighting the War Against Christmas?
Are you still fighting the War?

* All right, hanged. I’m boasting.

See what wonderful stuff you miss when you don’t read the comments?