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Burton Cole

The war wages for control of coveted thermostat

Terry snugged the hoodie around her head and burrowed her hands deep into the pockets of her quilted vest. “You look comfy,” I said as I zipped my parka and pulled on ski gloves. “It sure has gotten cold,” she said. Puffballs of steam rolled across the frigid air with every ...

Pogo Possum and his friends speak words of wisdom

“We are confronted by insurmountable opportunities.” So commented Walt Kelly, the genius behind “Pogo,” one of the all-time great newspaper comic strips featuring both satire and wordplay. Pogo Possum, Churchy LaFemme, Porky Pine and the rest of the Okefenokee Swamp gang butchered ...

When girls grow up, you become Ken

Terry shook a bundle of clothes loose from the whopping plastic bag. “You wouldn’t believe the bargains I found at the rummage sale today.” I groaned. “How many times have I explained this? Buying a $20 shirt at 25 percent off doesn’t save you $5. It makes you spend $15 that could ...

Everyone mumbles too much in upper middle age

“Sweetie, can you come here a minute?” I think that’s what she said. The older my wife gets, the harder she is to hear. “Be right there.” I rocked my easy chair once, twice, three times. When I reached sufficient momentum for launch, I fumbled out of the old thing amid much ...

Pondering some of life’s imponderable questions

If Wile E. Coyote could afford all those rockets, anvils, skates, skis and cannons from the Acme Co., why didn’t he just order dinner? What would the speed of lightning be if it didn’t zigzag? By the way, what’s the speed of dark? How did that “Keep off the grass” sign get ...

October has much more to offer than Halloween

Oh, those crazy, hazy days of October silliness. Allow me to be the first to wish you a happy Mad Hatter Day! Now go do something silly. Mad Hatter Day isn’t marked on your calendar? You need a new calendar. The year is jammed full of weird, odd, unusual and otherwise quirky celebrations ...

Drive minus athletic ability equals disaster

When it comes to sports, I possess tons of competitive drive. But I misplaced my only ounce of athletic ability. In an elementary school football game, I was wide open for a touchdown pass. I ducked. On my junior high basketball team, I charged the lane and leaped. But I’d lost the ball ...

Running away as a grown up is just too much work

It’s been decades since I last ran away from home. I was 3. I wriggled through the tunnel my beagle burrowed under the backyard fence and set out to celebrate freedom with my cousins Dale and Gary. My career as a runaway thumped to an abrupt halt when my dad caught up to me on the ...

Cow therapy costs a lot of moola

People pay up to $300 to calm their nerves by cuddling with a cow just like that one over — LOOK OUT! Sorry. I’ve been a bit jittery around bovines since one jumped on me. It was at our farm, and teenage me bent over the watering trough to clean out floating bits of hay — cows are ...

I saw a man, he danced on an earworm with his wife

Among the greatest pestilences, plagues and pesky problems known to mankind — to womankind, too — is the earworm. An earworm is created when a bouncy song with lots of rhythmic repetition floats on the airwaves, gains too much altitude, freezes, and a chunk of the tune breaks off. ...