"The fat lady's not ready to sing. She's clearing her throat."
- Unidentified D.C Wonk

E2K . . .

   Pronounced "E-E-K!", represents the last daze of our electoral dysfunction. Admittedly, it's fascinating to be a part of history instead of apart from it, though whether we're witnessing chaos or corruption remains a mystery. I think that Cicero summed it up best back in 63 B.C. when he said, in defense of Murena, accused of electoral bribery:
   "Nihil est incertius volgo, nihil obscurius voluntate hominum, nihil fallacius ratione tota comitiorum."
   Nothing is more uncertain than the crowd, nothing more obscure than the will of the people, nothing more fickle than the whole electoral system.
   And speaking of Romans, actor and Winkie Commander Peter Johnson claims that he has unearthed a "Saint Chad", spelled "St. Ceadda", as the Saint of Disputed Elections (or is it the Saint of Lost Causes?)
   "If Bush has a mandate," writes Star Telegram columnist Molly Ivers, "it is to be a uniter and not a divider; to work with Democrats as well as Republicans and to restore civility in Washington. True story: In 1992, a governor named Bill Clinton told me that he thought the main reason he would be a good president was because he had been able to work well with Republicans in Arkansas. May Bush have better luck."
   And from October, remember this slice of spam? "The Republican party is feeling that Cheney is a liability on the ticket. There's a rumor that a few weeks prior to the election in a desperate attempt to win, Cheney will resign because of a trumped-up heart problem or potential 'threat to his health.' Then either John McCain or Colin Powell will be asked to come on the ticket and save the party."
   As Newsweek recently reported, "[Cheney] has had more heart attacks than Bush has had trips overseas."

   "The legislature's job is to write law. It's the executive branch's job to interpret law."- G.W., Austin, Nov. 22, 2000


   And just in time for the holidays, Lynne Cheney's long-lost pot-boiler "The Body Politic" co-written by Victor Gold, (V.P. Spiro Agnew's press secretary and co-author of President Daddy Bush's autobiography "Looking Forward") is being re-issued in paperback as "a revealing look at what it might be like to be the vice president of the United States."
   Stephen Talbot writes in Salon, that the book is actually "a poorly written, allegedly comic satire about life in a Republican White House," and continues, "Let's hope, for her husband Dick Cheney's sake, that it doesn't reveal what his vice presidency will be like."
   You see, her fictional 59-year-old Republican suffers a heart attack and dies in office! "Her real-life husband is also 59," Talbot points out, "and has, of course, just survived his fourth heart attack."
   And what's more, when the novel was first released in 1988, Cheney had to undergo quadruple bypass surgery after suffering his third heart attack. "Twelve years later, Talbot observes, "the novel reappears and Cheney's heart fails again. If he were a superstitious man, he might think his wife's book is cursed."
   Finally, Mrs. Cheney offers another interesting twist as "his scheming, ambitious wife participates in a White House coverup of his death and manages to succeed her late husband as the country's first female vice president." Is her name, by chance, "Hillary"?

"It's true that hard work never killed anybody, but I figure, why take the chance?"
- Ronald Reagan


   Following the historic decision by the Florida Supreme Court, traditionally anti-abortion conservative Republican officials sought to pre-emptively silence the uncounted voices of more than 20,000 unborn votes carried by still pregnant chads.
   Lawyers for the chads filed a class action law suit in Florida's Superior Court, today, arguing that each of these pregnancies was the result of being poked by at least one voter. The suit seeks immediate relief, claiming that arbitrarily aborting these pregnancies would forever still the voices of these innocent unborn votes. Traditionally anti-abortion conservative spokesmen could not be reached for comment.

"We're Number One! Wait! Recount!"
- New Florida state motto


   Last Sunday was the final performance of "CATS", Broadway's longest running musical after racking up a record 7,485 performances. Usually, when a musical ends its run, the production company assists the newly out-of-work actors and actresses in finding other jobs, filing for unemployment benefits, etc. but in this case, the actors were just stuffed into a gigantic burlap bag, weighed down with rocks, and thrown from a bridge into the East River.
   After they refused to be neutered, what could they expect?

"It makes no difference who you vote for - the two parties are really one party representing four percent of the people." - Gore Vidal


   At an international medical conference, the doctors were discussing the recent developments in their country. The Israeli doctor said, "Medicine in my country is so advanced, we can take a kidney out of one person, put it in another, and have him looking for work in six weeks."
   The German doctor replied, "That's nothing! In Germany we can take a lung out of one person, put it in another, and have him looking for work in four weeks."
   The Russian doctor opted, "In my country medicine is so advanced that we could take a half a heart from one person, put it in another and have them both looking for work in two weeks."
   And finally, the American doctor, not to be outdone, said, "Hah! We're about to take an asshole out of Texas, put him in the White House; and half of the country will be looking for work the next day."
   [This joke is subject to recount]

"If Joseph Lieberman is elected Vice President, it will be the first time a Jewish person has served under a Democratic President since Monica Lewinsky."
- From Jack Angel

[Go to next column to continue reading]


   According to AP writer Ronald Blum, the battle for the White House even showed up into the Metropolitan Opera's production of Mozart's "The Magic Flute" when as the bird catcher Papageno, Canadian baritone Gerald Finley, lost and seeking prince Tamino, sang: "Are you forsaking me?" - and then, still in German, added - "Which way do I go?"
Bush?" he asked turning slowly stage right. And then turning to the left, he sang out, "Gore?"
   Bravo! Bis!!

"There is no terror in the bang, only in the anticipation of it." - Alfred Hitchcock


   . . . is the upcoming presentation of Gilbert & Sullivan's "Trial by Jury", (where I sing the Judge and Melinda, the Jury), as part of the Antaeus company's "Festival of Holiday Spirit" Building Fund Benefit. Hilariously staged and updated for Los Angeles, it will be presented at the site of our future theater at New Place on 4916 Vineland in NoHo, 6:30pm, December 18th.
   The 25-minute show will be followed by food and drink, caroling and a raffle for prizes that include tickets to "The Lion King" at the Pantages; "Much Ado About Nothing" at South Coast Rep and "Romeo and Juliet" at the Amanson; and a two-year pass to Antaeus Productions - all for a mere $25 donation per couple (including one child under 13, FREE with each adult!), and you need not be present to win the raffle.
   If you are interested, please CONTACT ME and include a mailing address so we can send you an official invitation and entry card. It's going to be a rollicking and heart-warming evening so please join us - and help us!

"I don't know jokes;
I just watch thegovernment and report the facts."
- Will Rogers


   For those of you who haven't yet had your flu shot, there's always "Grandma's Chicken Soup"; and here's how it works, extracted from an article on Medscape, prescribed to me by Dir. (not Dr.), Jeff Mandel, in which:
   "Traditional chicken soup was tested for its ability to inhibit neutrophil migration using the standard Boyden blindwell chemotaxis chamber assay with zymosan-activated serum and fMet-Leu-Phe as chemoattractants . . ."
   Chicken soup has been regarded as a remedy for centuries. So widely recommended is chicken soup in the Jewish tradition, that it is referred to by a variety of synonyms as Jewish penicillin, bohbymycetin, and bobamycin. The Egyptian Jewish physician and philosopher Moshe ben Maimon (Maimonides) recommended chicken soup for respiratory tract symptoms in his 12th century treatise, reportedly drawing on classical Greek sources. Chicken soup is, however, also recommended for similar purposes in a variety of other traditions suggesting multiple independent discoveries.
   The identity of the active ingredient or ingredients present in the soup remains unknown. The vegetables that are used to prepare the soup, however, are known to contain a large number of chemical species, many of which have medicinal activities . . . The chicken may contain a component that chemically neutralizes vegetable-derived toxins. Chicken soup is not without hazard. Anaphylaxis, aspiration, and severe electrolyte disturbances all have been described as a result of chicken soup ingestion.

+Cooking Time in Minutes and Description+

0: Bird in water - 38: Bird in boiling water - 51: Immediately after adding vegetables - 72: Under chicken/Top of pot near onions/Top of pot near carrots - 83: Bottom of pot/Top of pot - 91: Matzoh ball preparation, paste - 183: Matzoh ball preparation complete/Top of pot/Bottom of pot - 201: Middle of pot - 417: Aqueous phase/"Lipid" phase/Matzoh ball broth - 451: Mashed vegetables/Matzoh balls added - 486: Completed (needs to be seasoned to taste).
For the full article and enlightening charts and illustrations, visit <http://www.medscape.com/> - and "Bon Appetit!"

"The flowers, the gorgeous, mystic multicolored flowers are not the flowers of life, but people, yes people are the true flowers of life; and it has been a most precious pleasure to have temporarily strolled in your garden"
- Lord Buckley


   Grandmaster theater organist Gaylord Carter has played his last glockenspeil at the ripe-old age of 95. Born in Germany, he started playing at the age of 10 in church services in the U.S. in Wichita and later, in Los Angeles and unable to afford a ten-cent ticket, he talked a local manager into hiring him to accompany a film.
   Over the next eight decades, his career blossomed as he played in the great movie palaces, on radio ("The Whistler" and "Suspense") and TV ("The Pinky Lee Show") and then returned to play in theaters when silents became popular once more. In fact, it was at one of the L.A. Conservancy's "Last Seats on Broadway" screenings that we experienced one of his stirring and original performances.
   He created a production company called "Flicker Fingers", and later in his life, scored a dozen classic silent films for Paramount video. Columnist Jack Smith suggested that Carter (like the Firesign Theatre), "ought to be designated an historical monument."
   Harold Lloyd helped him become successful but advised, "Gaylord, where they're laughing, play softly. It's when they're not laughing that I need you."

   "I want my last words to be put on my tombstone. Unless my last words are something like 'Wheee!', cause that would just be stupid."- Matthew W. Schmeer


CREDITS: To acknowledge contributors of material used in this orbit like Ivan Berger and Gary Margolis, and to Brad Schreiber for the book "Eat or Be Eaten" by Phil Porter (!) from whence I gleaned some dandy "slugs" like:

"It was beautiful and simple as all truly great swindles are." - O. Henry



Phil's "Signs of the Times"

lets_eat.jpg (14488 bytes)

More sugar!
captioned by
Tiny Dr. Tim

2000 by Phil Proctor

Published 12/7/00