Tuesday, December 13, 2011


   I’ve been meaning to do for this for some time.
  It’s occurred to me that I may not be for everyone (and I don’t mean just Mrs. Penwasser). 
  I mean, you could be searching for the inspiration of a Blog of Note (won’t find it here) or a tastefully rendered piece on the joys of raising rescue animals.  Indeed, you may seek guidance on mending a broken marriage or how to make a killer bean dip using only the contents of your pantry.
  Instead, you blunder into a man sitting on a curbside toilet.
  Transfixed, as if watching a train wreck, you continue to read, figuring it can’t get much worse than pictures of Chaz Bono.  Oh, but it can.  There’s always a shot or two of Anthony Weiner.
  Then, just when you think it can’t get any worse, bang!, me with no shirt on.
  So, for making you throw up in your mouth, mea culpa (Latin for “my bad”).

"Verily, Hezekiah, would thee care to
help me kick Penwasser's ass?"
  Over the course of over a year, I’ve poked fun at a lot of people and institutions.  Such as:  France, French Canadians, French Fries, Canada, Canadian Thanksgiving, homosexuals, Lindsay Lohan, Detroit, New Jersey, Mel Gibson, the aforementioned Chaz, Britney Spears, Charlie Sheen, doctors, dentists, Vikings, Indians, Octo-Mom, Weiner’s Little Congressman, football, Elton John, Dick Cheney, anyone else named ‘Dick’, Kwanzaa, the Pilgrims, my father, underwear made in Vietnam, Iowa/Nebraska/Kansas/Illinois/Indiana (generally, the Midwest), the Amish, Chinese toilets, Denny’s, me, Congress, Genghis Khan, dogs, 5 Guys, erectile dysfunction, Presidents Day, the Royal Family, Kim Kardashian, midgets, Iran, the elderly, Jerry Lewis, Chester Arthur, Martin VanBuren, Warren Harding, Gugliemo Marconi, 
"How many of you even knew my first name was 'Gugliemo'?
That's what I thought.  Screw you and Edison."
Thomas Edison, Marcel Proust, Harry Houdini, the Jersey Shore, the cast of the Jersey Shore, Walmart, tightey-whiteys, Flo, Asians, South Sudan, Home Depot, and France (just so there’s no confusion).
  NOTE:  I did consider giving you links to all the above.  But, then I thought, screw it, that’s a lot of frikkin’ work.  Besides, who’d take the trouble to read them all?  Certainly not the French.  They’re all on vacation or protesting the right to wear Speedos on American beaches.  Oops, there I go again.
  I must say that, in all cases, I was merely having fun and didn’t mean any harm.
When "Pull-My-Finger"
goes horribly awry.
  Which, I know, sounds like such a lame, bogus excuse.  Imagine if, say, Hitler had said, “Gee, you know, that whole blitzkrieg thing was just a goof.  Why’s everybody so bent out of shape?”
  Nobody would buy it.  Even with Obama money (NOTE: My first poke at the President).
  But, in my case, I absolutely mean it.   
  Especially when it comes to Iran.  Those spooky dudes really scare the crap out of me.
"Oh, yeah?  Just for that, our women
won't shave their pits and our cheese will smell like feet."
  So, for what I’ve done and for the ribbing I plan on doing, mea maxima culpa (Latin for “my big ass bad.”  Although, the Romans probably never said “ass.”  Except in the livestock sense.  Or when talking smack about the Gauls.  Who were-you guessed it-French).
The world ended, but not this guy
  I’d also like to issue a preemptive apology for the upcoming reduced frequency of Penwasser Place in the year 2012 (as opposed to “the movie” 2012, a real buzz-kill of a flick about the end of the world, but not the end of John Kusack).
  As you know, I’ve begun a book about my time in the Navy called, It’s Not Just a Job.  Planned to be an almost 30-year memoir, I’ve barely made it past the first year.
  I can attribute this less-than-blazing speed due to sloth, my job, and the fact that I really enjoy writing in Blogger and, more importantly, reading your posts.
  But, mostly sloth.
  As a result, I’m going to limit my time here to a couple times a week.  That way, I hope to make some headway on my book before my grandchildren have to finish it while I’m banging my head with a mallet at the rest home.
  I don’t want to do it, but like bestiality laws, some things are necessary (especially in West Virginia).
  Finally, I’d like to request forgiveness in the event anything you read here isn’t the very finest comedy money can buy.  Because, after all, your  m...what?  You’re not paying?  Well, you can forget any money-back guarantee.
  If you want to yuk it up, go to Comedy Central.  Or C-Span.
  I can’t hit home runs all the time.  There is the chance that, one day (hopefully not today), you’ll read one of my posts and think, my God this sucks! 
  Then, you’ll go play Strip Jenga with the neighbors.
  Unless they’re from Iran.
  Then I’d keep my clothes on.
"Because we're watching you."



  1. The French just suck don't they. Everyone makes fun of them, don't apologize. And in the end Hitler shot himself, so in a way, he said "I'm sorry" I just read that John Kusak is dead by the way. Apparently he insulted some Iranian, I think the name was Ahminamajimmydad or something, and they blew him up.

    Now get off blogger ya lazy bastard, you've a book to write and trust funds to build for your grandchildren.

  2. They are such an easy target, huh? I will be gone for a couple days so I won't be able to write that book still.

  3. Oh, please don't tell me you don't like people from New Jersey?!

    The Amish rock! They've got a plan. Don't know what it is, but they've got something up their sleeve.

    I need you to get a widget that lets you subscribe by email. I don't use Google reader. And I hate missing you posts! You had me at the toilet seat by the driveway reading the newspaper!

  4. I'll look into that. I really do like people from New Jersey, but, like the French, they're an easy target. Truth be known, three of the absolute friendliest people I met when I was overseas were two French girls and their mom (no, it's not a sailor story). Sweet, sweet kids, they even sent my son and daughter presents for Christmas in 1996. And, one of my best friends from the Navy lives in New Jersey. As far as the Amish...I don't know any, but, if they have something up their sleeves, I guarantee you it isn't an iPod

  5. Love means never having to say you're sorry - that's an old Iranian proverb. They've got it in for you anyway, you being a US Navy veteran, so you may as well rip on them before getting hung from a crane.

  6. I used to think it would be a good thing to get stoned, courtesy of the Iranians. Then, I learned what their version of "stoned" really is. Ohhhhhhhh.........

  7. My neighbors aren't Iranian and I still wouldn't play strip Jenga. I am lucky their house is far enough away I can't see them very well.

  8. Hey, you never know. Those closet iPod users are growing at an alarming rate!

    So the French are friendly? I've always seen them as a bit arrogant towards us Yanks. Actually, any European. Come to think of it any American as well. We just don't like eachother sometimes.

    I see you've blogged about Lindsay as well as Kim K. It's so much fun bashing those that make too much money and do nothing to earn it. Bastards!

  9. strip Jenga, now there's something I haven't played in a while

  10. Wel I'm glad. I can't always keep up with you constant blog posters. Once a week is my limit.

    But I'm so thrilled to have found you this year,Al. You constantly brighten my day & make me giggle, not to mention my swearing. You've definitely been a real highlight during my turns about the blogosphere. I can't wait to read your memoir someday. If it's half as interesting as you, it'll be a bestseller, for sure!

    Happy holidays, Al!

  11. That is some impressive list! Well done, Al!

  12. Nooooo! Well, you better make sure you keep us updated on the book if you're not going to be around much.

  13. Poke fun at Canada? Tightey Whiteys?
    As a Canadian sitting in his tightey whiteys I must say: cool. What ever floats your boat.

    Good luck with the book! And when you get writers block you can look for insperation by ripping off other peoples blogs!

  14. Oh, Al, I'll miss you. Good luck with the book. It should be a smash!

  15. That list was a walk thru memory lane as I remembered a lot of the posts! I will miss reading my daily Penwasser post. Good luck with your book. Maybe I will pick up a copy..that is if it's published before you are beating your head with a mallet in the rest home!

  16. Good luck with the book. Man you really have taken the piss out of a lot of things. No need to apologise for having fun. Or for wanting to take more of a relaxed schedule.

  17. hahaha I think it would have been a shorter list to name off the groups/people you haven't made fun off. Yeah the French are easy targets, Going back and forth between Canadian and American jokes are pretty easy too. And Charlie Sheen, pffft who hasn't made fun of him.

    And hey, at least you can consider it a feat to still remember all 30 years or so, now you just have to get to writing. Remember to black out the juicy parts, wouldn't want those men in black swooping in.

  18. Are you sure that list is complete? I think that you may have left somebody off...Oh well, whoever it is - they suck so no big deal, you can apologize later.

  19. I had to come back and read the replies you gave. I'm really gonna miss you dude. I mean that, it's not just the booze talking eithers. It's the weed talking. Feck, did I say that? I must be really stoned right now.

  20. Can I borrow some of your tighty-whiteys? I wanna play strip Jenga with the neighbors and all I've got is granny panties.

    No worries about scaling down. We know where to find you. Worse yet, you know where to find us.


  21. No one is safe from your mockery it seems. :P

  22. Al, Al, Al...you think you're going where??? Posting when??? Because of what???

    NO! You'll just stay right here, doing what you do so well...which is make ME laugh! (I'm sure others will agree) But, as you know, Al - dear, sweet, loveable Al...it's always about ME...and what I want...right??

    So...enough about YOU needing a break - okay, I'll give you the weekends, as I'm sure Mrs P will have chores for you...but otherwise you'll be right here amusing me...kapish!

    And...those links...I would really have appreciated them. (for future reference)

    Well, that's all...off I go, to my freshly pressed bedding (yes, I have a "person" that irons my bedding [aka ME]) my beauty sleep awaits.


  23. Trust me to discover about the joys of strip Jenga just from reading your blog Al! Excellent stuff as always!

  24. You must defintely write the book ... a little bit of Al is better than none at all, and worth waiting for :o)

  25. I'm fairly new here and really could have used all those links! Oh well, I didn't know this blog of yours was going to require such a commitment. I guess I'll just start digging around here...

  26. Hey I'm glad you didn't put down bowling alleys.

  27. Your banner may be the best banner I've ever seen. Also, let me just say that once we went to posting twice a week, life became so much easier. We were free to work more on writing and the quality of posts was better. That, and it didn't feel like I was working for a professional newspaper everyday. Deadlines? Please, I do this for free. I don't need no stinking deadlines.

  28. @Ruth: Your neighbors aren't Iranian? Well, thank goodness for that. Now you won't be bothered at all hours of the night with someone knocking on your door wanting to borrow a cup of uranium. Or to cut off your hands.
    @ryoko: Yeah, I know, I was surprised. But, Nathalie and Chantal (their real names) were very nice people. Now, take that guy at the "Napoleon and Velveeta" museum in Paris. What a wanker!
    @baygirl: It truly is one of the classics. And much safer than "Strip Twister" with the hygienically-challenged.
    @Nancy: I'm also glad to have stumbled into your most intelligent blog. Even though most of your followers probably look at me like your half-witted cousin (on your father's side) from Mississippi with the mullet who shows up in his cut-off shorts and wife beater demanding to know where you hid the Keystone Lights, bean dip, Red Man tobacco, and chips. Thank YOU.
    @Kara: I hope I didn't miss anyone. Come to think of it....if I left them off the list of people I've insulted, would that mean they were insulted?
    @Sub-Radar: I'm going to go with maybe twice a week. The good news is that I'll be reading YOUR posts (and commenting) everyday. So I won't be gone-I'll just be peddling less of my crap to you.
    @bersercules: Sometime last year, I made a snarky comment about Canada (it actually was pretty funny). dbs from "think.stew" called me on it (I'm really confident he wasn't ticked off-he was just playing). Since then, I've toned down my comments about the cleaner, less gunfire-friendly part of North America. Except for maple syrup, hockey, and Celine Dion, that is.
    @Eva: Like in-laws, you'll be still seeing me. Well, "seeing" in a literary sense, that is. If you ever see me in a physical sense, you have my permission to run away, shrieking.
    @Leslie: Or eating soft foods. Hmmmm......tapioca......
    @Mark: All is well and good. But, I really think those squirrels in my yard are wicked hacked off at me now.
    @Pat: The main reason I'm writing it is that I'm afraid I WILL eventually forget. Bad enough I forget to wear pants to church now.
    @laughingmom: I think I made fun of the mob once. Them AND the Iranians. What a frikkin' death wish.
    @Anne: If the weed is talking, that's some great stuff. Sweet.
    @Robyn: Granny panties are fine. At the rest home. But, geez, who wants to see THAT!?
    @DWei: I think that's why my wife and children don't want to walk next to me anymore.
    @Jenny: I'll always need my Pearson Report. You iron your sheets? Mrs. Penwasser does, too. Except I've learned it's best not to piss her off when she's ready to do so. She ironed them once when I was asleep.
    @Yeamie; The problem happens when the tower falls down. Kinda symbolic. In a phallic kind of way.
    @Deborah: Good thing I'm little.
    @Pat: Hang around. I'm old and may start repeating myself. I'm old and may start repeating myself. Hey, what's for dinner? Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz
    @anthony: Post inspiration.....DONE!
    @Beer: I do fear about the quality of the posts. I really don't want that to go down like a Jenga tower. True, we don't get paid money. But, after reading your comments, I feel like the richest man in town (or was that George Bailey in "It's a Wonderful Life"?).

  29. I don't mind you picking on all of that extensive list of yours, but don't be saying bad things about West Virginia. That's where my parents came from and them's my people--well not the bestiality ones and those types are all over the place.

    I can understand cutting back. I'll probably be doing the same--especially if I get a job, which is something I'd better do.

    If you want to promote the memoir side of what you do, please come and do a guest post at my memoir blog Wrote By Rote. We could use some humor there, or a least another male point of view besides my own.

    Good luck in 2012.

    Tossing It Out

  30. Al, it's not a bad idea to go to a couple days a week of blog posts. I'll still read them. I blog everyday, but sometimes I'm tempted to take a day off, and I'm sure some posts are better than others. I don't know about the Strip Jenga thing, or rather, playing it with the neighbors. I'd prefer to play that with the hubby when the daughter is sleeping. Hehe! Happy holidays, Merry Christmas, Al!

  31. @Arlee: Darn it. Does that mean I can't make that crack about family trees in West Virginia being telephone poles? Ooops....
    Seriously, I like West Virginia. I drive through there every time I need to take my son back and forth to Virginia Tech. I even peed in a Sheetz there once (not to be confused with in a "sheet." I stopped doing things like that in my 20's).
    @Amberr: I think you're okay. "Strip Jenga" comes wrapped in a brown plain wrapper for your protection. Merry Christmas to you!!

  32. @Arlee: Thanks for the suggestion. I'll be checking that memoir site out. Sounds like fun.

  33. Good luck with the memoir.. Discipline my friend, Discipline.. That and a lot of booze..(I'm also notoriously slothy..and sometimes boozy.)

    Merry Christmas mate..


  34. I hope to have it done by NEXT Christmas.
    Meaning I'll be severely hacked off if the Mayans are right.
    Or relieved, if it's not done.