Literary Twitter Memes

Twitter memes are catching on like crazy. People love to do things like “Follow Friday,” where on Fridays you start following new people and you tweet about it. (Note: please don’t follow me just because it’s Friday. Follow me because you can’t bear to go another day without reading my random brain farts.)

I’m thinking we need to up the ante a bit. How about literary Twitter memes? Days of the week in which you tweet in the style of a famous writer!

For example we could have Martin Amis Mondays, where you take inordinate pleasure in using obscure and arcane vocabulary.

Benthamitically rethinking Twitter's pareidolia. Vermiculating toward recrudescent blog seems dotardic yet agonismically ablutious. FTW!

Or how about Shakespeare Saturdays, when all your tweets are in iambic pantameter?

To cook this night requires oneself to shop. But nay the call of Pizza Hut is nigh!

Or we could keep it simple with Hemingway Wednesdays, when you use short, declarative sentences, and every word is pure and true.

She gave me a pie. The pie was good.

Woo hoo! Twitter for people who like to read!


A few days ago I was in a St. Hubert chicken rotisserie restaurant (don’t ask). I spotted this highly ambiguous pictogram on the wall:


Here’s my explication:


Or, if you prefer, how about this dramatic interpretation:

FEMALE: “It’s over! I’m leaving you for the guy in the wheelchair.”

MALE: “No! I’m leaving you for the guy in the wheelchair!

Got a better idea? Leave it in the comments!

Design Flaw

Now that the U.S. election is over, we have at least three or four weeks before the campaigning for 2012 begins. Let’s use this time to discuss some of the real issues that affect our daily lives.

For example, while mowing through some Hallowe’en candy recently, I was reminded of a design flaw inherent in the move towards hollow plastic lollipop sticks. This shift away from tightly rolled paper has been going on for some time, but the endless campaigning has distracted me from it.

The flaw is simply this: the plastic sticks are hollow, which prevents you from achieving proper suction while consuming your lollipop. Oh, the first few minutes are usually good, but as soon as the lollipop shrinks to the point of exposing the end of the stick, your vacuum is over.

The state of the plastic lollypop stick, circa 2008.

If you’re lucky, you can suck the lollipop down to a nub before this happens. Sometimes however, depending on the depth and angle of the stick, it happens right away, which can ruin your whole afternoon.

It is difficult to fully convey how annoying this is. You’re sitting there, blissfully enjoying your lemon or strawberry lollipop, and then sshhhhhhhhhh! The seal is broken and you’re sucking in cold dirty air. From then on, you can’t get any action from your lollipop, it just dangles there, making loud and sloppy whistling noises as you inevitably keep trying to get some proper lollipoppage. It’s a reflex left over from infancy; give a three-month old a pierced rubber nipple with no bottle attached, and see how quickly he gets pissed off from sucking in air. Yet he keeps on trying.

As a workaround, I recommend rolling a small sliver of paper, wetting it, and inserting it into the bottom of the hollow stick to block the air flow. Duck tape works too. However, what I really want is for the lollipop manufacturers to wake up to this flaw; to realize how the hollow stick spoils the lollipop experience.

Not that I want to go back to paper, which is prone to sogginess at the critical juncture where the stick meets the ball of tasty goodness. But what about designing a stick that is sectioned, like a pole of bamboo? While you’re at it, add a bit of texture so you don’t have to dig out that little divet in order to make the ball grip the stick.

Hire me. I’m an independent lollipop consultant. My rates are reasonable.


Every day brings a new story. Today’s story is a mystery that begins around lunch time when I pull my face away from my duties and gaze out the window. I see that a purplish-red drop has slithered and dried on the outside surface of the glass.

I’m on the fourth floor of a five storey building whose windows do not open. So what is this drop and how did it get there? It looks like it could be from a slopped glass of Australian merlot, which sounds nice but there is no explanation for how such a glop of grapey goodness could have arrived here, a good 40 feet off the ground.


What other explanations could there be? A diarrhetic gull, cramped after gorging on cranberries and plums?


A window cleaner caught in a gust of wind while noshing his peanut butter and Welch’s grape jelly sandwich?


I’m stumped. And tonight’s rain will wash the mystery away. But in case this becomes a murder mystery, at least I’ve captured some of the evidence.