Monsieur Pamplemousse and Pommes Frites

4172030Michael Bond died recently and as I was listening to one of the more important obituaries, I was disappointed to hear that Bond was best known for his series of Paddington Bear books. As a kid I’m sure I read at least the first book explaining the origins of Paddington Bear. Perhaps if I hadn’t grown up I might have read the entire series as it was published. But sometime in the early 1980s I was sitting on the floor knitting a pair of socks while my then wife, the librarian, was reading a book and giggling like someone was tickling her unmercifully.

The book was the first Monsieur Pamplemouse novel and instantly immersed my mystery funny-bone in the adventures of Michael Bond’s greatest character: Monsieur Pamplemousse and his well-fed hound Pommes Frites.

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High Court Goes Gay; GOP Frets

Letter: High court goes gay; GOP frets
By Tony Bender on Jul 12, 2015 at 1:12 a.m.

Whew! Man, a guy takes a week off and look what happens.

SCOTUSI’m still sorting this out. The gist, I guess, is that America now has gay health care. I haven’t reviewed the fine print but, as I understand it, you may now marry the doctor of your choice.

Many Republicans are outraged, enraged and deranged by the way nine Druids in Washington circumvented the Constitution. Just like that time they pitched pennies in the hallway to decide the winner of the 2000 presidential election.

You don’t have to be a constitutional scholar to know how wrong it was to make a decision in that manner. These things should be decided by a field goal in the waning seconds of overtime. Or that rock/paper/scissors thing.

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Saint George and the Dragon

FrebergWhen I was in grade school—probably the fourth grade—the teacher brought a copy of Stan Freberg’s (soon to be) classic comedy routine, Saint George and the Dragon. Now back then Dragnet was big on the radio and even on television (we didn’t have one yet) and Jack Webb had perfected his snappy monotone delivery which was ideal for spoofing. Along came one of the comic geniuses of my time, Stan Freberg, and the result was this now nostalgic recording.

We talked that teacher into playing Saint George and the Dragon for us on several occasions and a few of us could reproduce the dialogue from memory. I guess you can think of Stan Freberg as being the Weird Al of the ’50s. Freberg died the other day. Beyond his skills in creating entertainment, Freberg can be easily considered the the father of humorous advertisements and commercials. Many of his efforts in this field are still memorable (and fun). In his later years he was reduced to doing sales pitches on the television for Encyclopedias, but he never lost the edge in his humor. Look him up: there’s a bunch of his stuff on YourTube.

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