"I Don't Mind A Parasite. I Object To A Cut-Rate One."
Our challenges – and the wonders of the world around us – seem to never cease. Now that we have (apparently) survived another “Doomsday” scenario, it seems altogether fitting that we should pause and take stock of our blessings and the state of the world around us. From fiscal cliffs to Sandy Hook massacres to cultural chaos, it would appear that things aren’t going too well. But the strength of this great nation has always been that we can turn despair into hope, and “make lemonade” from the lemons life gives us. Our ability to see humor in the events of our world has also helped us get through hard times. Often that humor is at the expense of our fellow citizens of the world. But that has never stopped us from laughing.
So in the timeless tradition of America being able to laugh at itself (and at others, no matter what their nationality) – and also to aid in reflecting on our good fortune that in America we still can have a sense of humor - I offer up these real-life excerpts from newspapers/online sources from around the world. Hopefully they will add to the spirit of holiday cheer. If not…oh, well…
*From (appropriately) The Smoking Gun: “A federal employee was formally reprimanded this month for excessive workplace flatulence, a sanction that was delivered to him in a five-page letter that actually included a log of representative dates and times when he was recorded “releasing the awful and unpleasant odor” in his Baltimore office.”
*From CBS Houston: “ NEW ORLEANS, La. (AP) — A Louisiana woman ran afoul of police when she gave her neighbors an unusual holiday greeting, hanging Christmas lights in the shape of a middle finger. Sarah Childs was in a dispute with some of her neighbors in Denham Springs, just east of Baton Rouge, so she decided to send a message with her decorations. Neighbors complained and police threatened to arrest her, so she and the American Civil Liberties Union of Louisiana sued the city. A judge ruled in her favor Thursday.”
*From CBS Minnesota: “IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — A dentist acted legally when he fired an assistant that he found attractive simply because he and his wife viewed the woman as a threat to their marriage, the all-male Iowa Supreme Court ruled Friday.
The court ruled 7-0 that bosses can fire employees they see as an “irresistible attraction,” even if the employees have not engaged in flirtatious behavior or otherwise done anything wrong. Such firings may be unfair, but they are not unlawful discrimination under the Iowa Civil Rights Act because they are motivated by feelings and emotions, not gender, Justice Edward Mansfield wrote.”
*And in the category of “Thank God We Live In America And Not In Russia” comes this tidbit from The Independent (UK): “A Chechen newspaper has been closed down just hours after its editor-in-chief embarrassed the region’s Kremlin-backed leader while questioning Russian President Vladimir Putin. Belkis Dudayeva, the editor-in-chief of Kadyrov’s Path, provoked laughter when she asked Mr Putin a question which began: “Thank God that Chechnya has now become a region of peace and prosperity...” The resulting laughter from other journalists seems to have stung Ramzan Kadyrov, the head of the Chechen Republic, who announced later that the newspaper would be closed down.”
So a Merry Christmas to all – and a most Happy 2013!!!
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