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Burton Cole

Peer pressure rolls right off a mature Cole and into a ditch

The more I age, the more my immunity to peer pressure matures. It’s like gaining a force field against stupidity. Oh, sure, I still do plenty of stupid things. My wife keeps a catalog of them. I am still a guy, after all. It’s just that when I do stupid things now, it’s because I want ...

Grumpy Grammar Guy begs you to stop abusing apostrophes

As a recovering copy editor, few things get my goat as much as the misplaced apostrophe. Walk down any street in the U.S. of A. and you’re likely to see signs like these: • Professional Sign’s & Lettering • Fried Oreo’s • Valentine gift idea’s • Radiator Cover’s Made ...

People milk idea of zebra cow and moove past methane

If I believed everything I read, I’d think that cows are evil, bent on destroying the world by bovine burps and flatuence. I grew up on a farm in cow country, and trust me, the cows had nothing on us pack of boys when it came to burps, gas-passing and other odoriferous hobbies. I do not ...

It’s lost forever! Wait, here it is

“I need a new knit hat for winter,” I told Terry. “Mine disappeared.” “Isn’t it on the hat holder by the door?” she said. “That’s where I put it. But it’s not there.” Terry walked to the back door. She plucked my knit cap from the far left side of the tray. She dropped ...

Predictions of flying cars, ape chauffeurs fall short

In the supposed words of the great philosopher Yogi Berra, “It’s tough to make predictions, especially about the future.” That quote’s also been attributed to Mark Twain, Niels Bohr, Casey Stengel, Robert Storm Petersen and Samuel Goldwyn, among others. With a past so unreliable, is ...

Get yourself a bowl of cold cereal and check the mail

It was so odd that my wife called me at work: “You got a letter in the mail.” “You rang me up to tell me about yet another credit card offer?” “No,” she said. “Your cousin Cindy. She sent you a letter. An actual letter with an envelope, a stamp and everything.” “Weird,” I ...

Just hire a chimpanzee to remodel your kitchen

Science once proclaimed that what separated homo sapiens from all the other critters was that humans were the only creatures who fashioned and used tools. (Humans also are the only creatures known to use credit cards and hold committee meetings. You may think your executive committee is made ...

It’s all fun and games until someone loses an eye

Has any kid ever poked an eye out? His, hers or anyone elses’s? That was the No. 1 threat parents gave to make us quit doing something: “Don’t run with that stick in your hand. You’ll fall and poke your eye out.” “Keep throwing those balled up socks like that and you’ll poke ...

Spit-shined and ready to grow up with wife’s advice

I am my wife’s oldest son. I don’t know when the transformation happens but it’s an affliction most husbands suffer. One moment, our wives chat about how they fell in love with our boyish charms. The next, they’re spit-washing cereal off our cheeks and ordering us to tuck in our ...

’Tis the season for baggy pants

’Tis the season to break out the holiday wear. I don’t mean ties imprinted with Santa’s chubby cheeks, and red and green sweaters littered with snowflakes. Let’s wait until December for that. I’m talking about pants that are two sizes too large and sweatshirts marked 3XL. If they ...