Hot off the press

Hot off the press

Humorist Will Rogers often said he had the perfect source for his jokes. The newspaper. (As well as Congress.) He said he read about eight newspapers a day. And when he was in a town with only one newspaper he read it eight times.

He comes to mind some days when I scan newspaper headlines online. Here are a few from today: PHOTOS: GAY ACTIVISTS INVITED TO WHITE HOUSE “FLIP OFF” REAGAN PORTRAIT.

Do you suppose Will Rogers ever imagined he would see such a headline? How about the reverse? REAGAN FLIPS THE BIRD TO GAY GROUP. Nah. I wonder what Abe Lincoln would think about this. I believe his wife chatted with spirits at séances. Can you imagine her trying to explain that some ghost told her that some day there would be a gay group that…? No, I can’t imagine it either.



Here is another: FOUR-HUNDRED-POUND WOMAN ARRESTED FOR SITTING NAKED ON BUS STOP BENCH. I’m sure that stirs up a few images to keep you awake tonight. I bet that in Will Rogers’ day there were no more than a handful of 400-pound women around. Maybe that should be “handfuls.” Or “handsful”? And I further wager none of them would have been bothered to try to catch a bus in the buff.

DOCTORS REMOVE TUMOR FROM UNBORN BABY’S MOUTH WHILE STILL IN WOMB. Now that would not have seemed possible to Will Rogers’ readers. Which should remind you how far medical science has advanced.

It has also maybe gone the other direction, in a sense. Docs regularly endow women – and some of those gay activists – 40 lb. breast implants. You can decide whether that is progress. I am staying out of it.

This is more to my taste: EUROPE’S HIGHEST COURT RULES THAT WORKERS WHO GET SICK ON VACATION LEGALLY ENTITLED TO TAKE ANOTHER.

This is not the opinion of a whacky communist who envisions paradise for all workers. This is from learned judges. This will never work in Greece, of course. That is because most Greeks are apparently on vacation most of the time. On their route toward early, early retirement. Suppose they get sick during their vacation. And they are granted another vacation. Where will they fit it in?

Here is one of today’s headlines which seems like a throwback to Will Rogers’ times. When there were still a few emperors kickin’ around: LARRY ELLISON TO BUY HAWAIIAN ISLAND. That is one heckuva shopping spree.

I am running out of space. So I apologize that we cannot look into a few more headlines. Such as: TWITTER CRASHES. USERS PANIC. “MY LIFE HAS NO MEANING ANYMORE.”

Nor can we pursue: OBESITY THREATENS TO DEPLETE EARTH’S RESOURCES. I know what you are thinking: Fat chance that will happen.

TEENS ORDER CHINESE FOOD, KILL DELIVERYMAN, EAT DINNER.

Now that one Will Rogers might have understood. In those days millions of Chinese were starving. They would have eaten the deliveryman.

Which reminds me of my favorite of his remarks. He was questioning our invasion of some Latin American country, I think. To (ahem) protect Americans living there. “What would we say if the Chinese sent a gunboat with their marines up the Mississippi River claiming they were protecting their laundries in Memphis?”

I will paraphrase another of his remarks. You have been reading that Chinese sage, Goes-on Too Long.

From Tom ... as in Morgan.

For more columns and for Tom’s radio shows and new TV shows (and to write to Tom): tomasinmorgan.com.

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