June 10, 2019
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You have landed on a web site that is currently occupied by….YOU! (You’re so lucky.) And you’re just in time for Week Number 401 of Scintillating Syntax, or Stringin’ Them Words Together as Best We Can. I’m working under my usual limitations, so bear with me.
Well, it happened the other morning. They said it was coming and they were right: The first mosquito attack of the season. To tell the truth, with all the rain I don’t know why it took this long. Those nasty little varmints can get active in just a few days.
Anyway, I was out on my morning walk when suddenly…”eeeeee” in my right ear and a flying beastie tried to land on it for a quick snack. A few frantic waves and he was gone. Good thing they have that early warning sound effect thing; if he’d landed on any other part that wasn’t near an ear I might’ve had my first bite of the season. He wasn’t very persistent either; I‘ve had mosquitoes try and try again for a block or so before giving up and looking for a squirrel or dog.
Trouble is, there’s no graceful way to fend off these pests, especially if they try to land on arms or legs. Legs are the worst. You’re walkin’ along shakin’ and bakin’ with limbs a-flyin’ in six directions, and you have to wonder what people driving by are thinking. How do they know you’re driving off filthy mosquitoes? For all they know, you may have a Problem Upstairs. So I’ve complied a short list of explanations for your gyrations should anyone ask…
1. This is part of my fitness routine. I’m supposed to do ten thousand steps a day and five thousand arm and leg waggles.
2. I saw them do this on Dancing With The Stars and just thought hey, I bet I can do that.
3. I’m with an Intelligence Agency (sorry, can’t say which one) and I was signaling an aircraft overhead. Special surveillance, that’s all I can tell you. (It helps to hitch up your pants and sniff self-importantly like Barney Fife when you say this.)
4. I play soccer and I was just practicing my ‘fake injury’ moves.
5. I make extra money on the side by simulating neurological problems for medical students at KU. Could you guess which disorder I was manifesting? I get a bonus if you can’t guess it.
I hope this will help you reply to any probing questions head-on without fear or embarrassment. Mosquito season will be over in a few months. November at the latest. Keep on a’wagglin’.
Alright, let’s check the Trivia File and seen how many questions you’ve demolished this time around…
Well, just two, actually. Not a lot of response this week; maybe everyone’s on vacation.
Terry answered the Flood of ’81 mayor question. Yes, it was Bob Parrish.
Russ knows his Oklahoma-ish music. The song I was asking about is ‘Oklahoma Hills,’ written by Woody Guthrie, recorded by him and many others, most notably Hank Thompson who had a huge hit with it some years ago.
Three questions are still available: What was the original name of Great Bend’s 10th Street?
Who was the vice president who went around checking on defense contractors to make sure they were doing things ‘on the up and up?’ (Hint: this was during war time.)
Who was the pop singer who complained in song about a communication problem he had with his chair?
Let’s send up two more for your edification:
Big stars such as Frank Sinatra, Peggy Lee and Eddie Cantor once sang tributes to this shampoo. What shampoo?
This Hans Christian Andersen fable (retitled for Broadway) launched the career of one of the most popular female entertainers of the 20th century. Name the show or the entertainer. Bonus points for both.
We had a record low temp this Monday morning as our weirdball weather of 2019 continues. I want some classic Kansas wheat harvest weather. Temps in the 90s and humidities down south of 30 percent. Now, that’s more like it. Will it happen this year? We await further developments.
I enjoy hearing from you. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. I’ll answer in this space next week.
Have a great week!