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Slow blow 

This was the second slowest news week since 1871, and you know what that means. Since nothing happened worth writing a column about, instead of the usual dazzling ratiocination concerning how things were last week, I'm obliged to bloviate to a prescribed length on how things might turn out in the weeks ahead.

OK. First off, President Bush needs to pick on somebody his own size. Making life a little more miserable for poor sick children isn't going to impress anybody — isn't going to make anybody think of him as a real “ass-kicker,” which is what at this pitiful stage he seems to want. Kicking little butts in the pediatric ward, you wonder what West Wing heckuva-job genius thought that one up.

Next, the Razorbacks need to get themselves a softer schedule. These 1-AA teams that have losing records on their own level are just too tough. It's like they don't even know that the reason they were put on the schedule in the first place was because we thought they could be counted on to roll over. Why can't they just take the big payday, flop around and act interested for a while, then go on home, allowing our guys to gloat for a while and then go out and commit their Class D felonies? Isn't that what's in the contract?

Next, the drive-by shooters out on Asher Avenue need to be a little more considerate of innocent bystanders. I mean, a smidgen of common courtesy doesn't cost anything, and if the golfers at nearby War Memorial who hit errant drives can shout a warning “Fore!” you'd think these fellows could manage a thoughtful “Duck!” to unsuspecting passersby before ventilating supposed rivals and crossfire vics in yonder University shadows. You'd think so. But good manners are a thing of the past, I guess, and you can't turn the clock back. What is it they say? — “Shoot and holler s---.”

Next, the Clinton Library groundskeepers need to put out a few plastic pink flamingoes, some plywood cutouts of bent-over fat women, and at least a couple of thoroughly cannibalized junkers up on blocks — a Mercury Grand Marquis Brougham, a Plymouth Fury, paint about every bit gone, would be nice — just so visitors will know where they are, instead of supposing they might be in Kentucky or maybe Nebraska, and will feel right at home. Ought to go real well with the mobile-home architectural theme over there.

Next, we need to make the bobwhite quail the official state edible bird before it goes the way of the ivory-bill. The bobwhite has become scarce, as I understand it, mainly because of habitat constriction, not from overhunting. Coyotes bag more quail than shotgunners do, and if you've never tried it, take it from one who has that the would-be quail shooter, the quail shooter-atter, is a lot more likely to pull a Cheney than he is to ruffle a feather. Lawyers hunting with you, hell anybody can bring down one of those.

While we're revising regalia, we shouldn't forget that with Beanpole and the Weebils having absquatulated at long last, we'll be needing a new official state clown. Should be applicants aplenty as Arkansas has many clowns of many varieties, especially the honker public official species. KARN might be a good place to conduct the interviews.

Next, I have a notion that we need to do something with, or about, the town of Maumelle, but I'm not sure what. I'm not sure what purpose it serves in the Great Chain of Municipal Being. I remember, though, that Roy and Dale were associated with it at one time, so it can't be all bad. Or at least it had a raison d'etre back before the two of them rode off to be taxidermied and put in the Happy Trails permanent exhibit with amazingly lifelike Trigger and Bullet. I think Nelly Bell might be in there too. But not the cat. If they even had a cat.

Next, they need to turn University Mall into a big community indoor ice rink. Quick and convenient hospital access for the axel-overambitious. And who knows, we might get an intramural or semi-pro hockey team in there, and it might strike up a transfluvial competition with the team that used to skate over on the north side and perhaps still does. Who were they? The Hogs on Ice?

Next, we need to have the Family Council of Arkansas declared a public nuisance, and change it from a high crime to a misdemeanor if a fed-up gay person goes over there and bitch-slaps the council's provincial poobah basher whose name is said to be Jerry Cox. And that chortle you just heard was from Beavis Cornholio's running buddy Butt-Head yonder: “He said Cox. Heh-heh. Heh-heh.”

And after that, we need to do something about these athletes all the time eating sunflower seeds and spitting out the hulls. A bad influence. A child might suck one of those into a windpipe and, on account of the Bush veto aforementioned, die. It beats the monster tobacco chaws, yes, but in this day and time don't those opulent clubhouses have anybody who can nosh up a tray of hors d'oeuvres?
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