Einstein Q's and A's 

Q: I’ve seen reports of this person or that “running for governor.” What is the meaning of this term? Is it running like in a 100-meter race? Is it running like the engine of a car? And why would someone want to do it who didn’t have to? A: The type of running that is involved in a political campaign is best expressed in the old simile, “running around like a chicken with its head cut off.” There’s nothing purposeful or sensible in it. It’s just egotism amuck. I’ve given much thought to that question of why people do it who don’t have to do it. The only thing I can figure is demons. Demons ride these characters around like donkey basketball. Q: I saw this bird out here that I thought might be one of them ivory-bills. Do you think it is? A: From the description elsewhere in your query, I would guess not. Best I can tell, your sooty-looking bird is either a crow or an escaped parrot that got in somebody’s chimney. The part about the curse words, each one preceded by the graawk, has me leaning toward the latter. Q: Didn’t De Soto discover Arkansas? This igmo friend of mine says it was an Italian named Arkansio Vespucci. He saw it on AETN so it can’t be a prank. A: I’ve never heard of any Arkansio Vespucci, and neither has State Historian Myrtle Travelogue. She says maybe he was Amerigo’s little brother, but the Vespucci family records are sketchy back in medieval times. De Soto was indeed among the first group of Europeans to tour here, but a place named Arkansas didn’t exist back then, and I don’t know if you can properly be said to have discovered something not yet extant. Even now, Arkansas is only an abstract concept, and no one can really tell where Junction City, Arkansas, leaves off and Junction City, Louisiana, begins. Or Texarkana, Arkansas, and Texarkana, Texas. We know the boundary lines exist because they’re visible from space in the satellite photos they use on the TV weather programs, but they disappear in the close-ups. Q: Where can I get me some catalpa worms for fish bait? A: Catalpa worms grow on trees in these parts — catalpa trees, which may just be a coincidence. The growing season is roughly the same as for cotton, although there’s no laying-by of catalpa worms. You harvest them in the fall and quick-freeze them for use the following spring and summer. Just grab one from the bucket and put it on the boat seat to thaw. Takes about 10 seconds in the August heat, quicker than a microwave could do it, and they don’t explode on the boat seat. A microwave with exploded catalpa worms is a hard thing to live with. Mexico has been bad in recent years to send rustlers up to nab our catalpa worms and send them back illegally for use in the bottom of bottles of tequila. NAFTA forbids this but the Mexicans just wink at it. The legislature named the catalpa worm our official state worm a few years ago. Q: I’ve kept up my boycott of all things French and German because they wimped out on us in Iraq. My brother-in-law asked me if that included boycotting French ticklers, and I didn’t know what he was talking about. Do you? A: A French tickler is a joke thought up or first told by somebody from France. There are no German ticklers. A genetic quirk replaced the German sense of humor with a dour blank space on the helix.. They don’t know why “Springtime for Hitler” in “The Producers” is funny, so naturally they couldn’t appreciate the “another fine mess you’ve gotten us into” aspect of the Bush & Blair Mesopotamian routine. Baghdad Bob left them scratching their heads. The problem with the French, on the other hand, was too little comedy in the Iraq business instead of too much. A President Jerry Lewis pratfalling on WMDs and mummying up with duct tape would have brought them aboard, laughing, in no time. Q: I saw in Billy Graham’s column that saved people can expect to have their favorite pets with them in Heaven. I had this dog one time that I liked a lot, but after he passed I realized I was plumb sick of waiting on hjm hand and foot while he soiled the furniture, chased the old people of our neighborhood fleeing frantically in their little scooters, failed to catch a Frisbee a single time ever, and cost me nearly $9,000 in vet bills. Why would I even want to go to Heaven knowing this no-sense bad-breath fleabag will be there to greet me? What do you think? A: Damnation, man, we got real problems to be worrying about. We can’t be sitting on our yahyah, waiting for our nahnah thinking about some old dog that’s already dead. Billy Graham is a grand old thumper, but the gong whanged on his oracle a long time back, so c’mon. Three-headed Cerberus guards Hell’s turnstile and Pandemonium brims with curs, and I just can’t see the sons-a-bitches keeping the straight and narrow. All of them I’ve known or heard about always took the path of least resistance.

From the ArkTimes store


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

  • Executionpalooza

    Appearances count. I was struck by a single sentence over the weekend in a full page of coverage in The New York Times devoted to the killing spree in Arkansas, beginning with a front-page account of the recent flurry of legal filings on pending executions and continuing inside with an interview with Damien Echols, the former death row inmate.
    • Apr 20, 2017
  • Death Row inmates argue to keep stay of execution in place; urge 8th Circuit not to 'rush' analysis

    Early this morning, attorneys for nine Death Row inmates, filed an argument with the 8th United States Court of Appeals contesting the state's effort to override Judge Kristine Baker's order Saturday that halted executions scheduled this month.
    • Apr 17, 2017
  • Federal judge denies execution stay for Don Davis but larger stay continues

    Don Davis, who's been moved to the killing facility of the state prison for killing tonight at 7 p.m. if a stay of execution is lifted in another federal suit, sought a stay in another federal court Sunday, but the request was denied.
    • Apr 17, 2017
  • More »

More by Bob Lancaster

  • Wretched rez

    I had some New Year's Rez(olutions) for 2016 but that ship sailed so I'm renaming them my Spring Rez or my All-Occasion Whatevers and sending them along.
    • May 26, 2016
  • Nod to Bob

    A look back at the weird and wonderful world of Bob Lancaster.
    • Mar 21, 2013
  • On black history

    If you're going to devote an entire month to appreciating the history of a color, it might as well be the color black.
    • Feb 14, 2013
  • More »

Most Shared

  • Judge Griffen writes about morality, Christian values and executions

    Pulaski County Circuit Judge Wendell Griffen, who blogs at Justice is a verb!, sends along a new post this morning.
  • The Ledell Lee execution thread

    Arkansas Times contributor Jacob Rosenberg is at the Cummins Unit in Grady filing dispatches tonight in advance of the expected execution of Ledell Lee, who was sentenced to death for the Feb. 9, 1993, murder of Debra Reese, 26, who was beaten to death in the bedroom of her home in Jacksonville.
  • Former state board of education chair Sam Ledbetter weighs in on Little Rock millage vote

    Ledbetter, the former state Board of Education chair who cast the decisive vote in 2015 to take over the LRSD, writes that Education Commissioner Johnny Key "has shown time and again that he is out of touch with our community and the needs of the district." However, Ledbetter supports the May 9 vote as a positive for the district's students and staff.

Latest in Bob Lancaster

  • Lancaster retires

    Bob Lancaster, one of the Arkansas Times longest and most valued contributors, retired from writing his column last week. We’ll miss his his contributions mightily. Look out, in the weeks to come, for a look back at some of his greatest hits. In the meantime, here's a good place to start.

    • Feb 21, 2013
  • On black history

    If you're going to devote an entire month to appreciating the history of a color, it might as well be the color black.
    • Feb 14, 2013
  • Making it through

    Made it through another January, thank the Lord.
    • Feb 6, 2013
  • More »

Visit Arkansas

Haralson, Smith named to Arkansas Tourism Hall of Fame

Haralson, Smith named to Arkansas Tourism Hall of Fame

Chuck Haralson and Ken Smith were inducted into the Arkansas Tourism Hall of Fame during the 43rd annual Governor’s Conference on Tourism

Event Calendar

« »


2 3 4 5 6 7 8
9 10 11 12 13 14 15
16 17 18 19 20 21 22
23 24 25 26 27 28 29

Most Recent Comments

  • Re: Art bull

    • Well, when the Bull was first put up there, it meant one thing, and that…

    • on April 24, 2017
  • Re: Art bull

    • the nice thing about art is that it is what it is, but what it…

    • on April 22, 2017

© 2017 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation