Friday humour - April 24, 2009



[ from Davo at Bluehaze ]


G'day


I must admit to feeling a bit more warm and fuzzy since Our Kev has been PM
of Oz.  In such bad times with a worldwide financial crisis worse than any
for over 70 years he has the second highest popularity rating of any
Australian PM - 74%, to Bob Hawke's 75% in the 80s.

The current Leader of Her Majesty's Opposition, Malcolm Turnbull, seems a
good man and decent orator.  He's been a very successful merchant banker,
and headed the Australian push for a republic in 1999.  He seems to have
all the credentials to make the Liberal Party a great force in Oz politics
again.

But the Liberal Party has one real big problem.  They are the "born to
rule" party to govern.  They aren't used to being in opposition.  In their
60 years of existence, the Libs have governed for 44 years.

Poor old Malcolm Turnbull is starting to come across as Malcolm Bullturn
...
or Bullsh*t.

Someone in the Liberal Party needs to tell him that they actually lost the
last election!

The Liberals were thrown out at a time when our country was doing very
nicely ... thankyou very much.  But after eleven and a half years the
electorate had finally had enough of divisive policies, no principles,
lies and vilification, no vision of the future, no infrastructure during
an amazing boom time, and the worst legislation that workers had to
confront in over 100 years.

The Libs lost the very winnable 2007 election because of two individuals
(and a pile of sycophants).  "Mean and tricky" John Howard, also labelled
"the Lying Rodent" by his own party.  And the gutless wonder Peter
Costello,
because he would never challenge little Honest Johnnie.  He just wanted all
the perks handed to him on a plate.

Malcolm Bullsh*t's current popularity rating is abysmal.  But deep down he
seems a "capital L Liberal" artist to a tee.

All he does is knock and criticise.  He talks about being bipartisan, and
that the current government should come to him to seek agreement on future
policies.   As Little Johnnie Howard once said ...   "Hello  Hello".  He
should now say it to Malcolm.

If MT ever realistically wants to be PM of Oz - he should announce what his
party's alternative policies are.  The strongest one that I can remember is
that the Liberal Party will forever make petrol 5c cheaper than the current
Labor government ... whatever happens.

He made a great play of this at the time ... but now all he seemingly wants
to do is to knock everything our Labor government is doing to help us get
through the current crisis but offer nothing as an alternative.

I guess his vision is that when things actually get worse (as they will) he
may get to be PM because he'll be able to say ... I said so.

This is not holding the current government to account.  It is extreme
opportunism.

As far as I'm concerned Malcolm Turnbull is Malcolm Bullsh*t.

The terrible trouble for the Liberal Party though is that there simply is
no better candidate to run with.  Younger members of the Liberal Party
should take action.


This weeks jokes come from Diks, Stumpy Steve, Kaos-reflex, Allnutts,
Seasoldier, and Burnout.


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            Why Italian Fathers and Grandfathers pass their
                     handguns down through the family

An old Italian Mafia Don is dying. He calls his grandson to his bedside.

"Guido, I wanna you lissina me. I wanna you to take-a my chrome plated .38
revolver so you will always

remember me."

"But grandpa, I really don't like guns. How about you leave me your Rolex
watch instead ?"

"You lissina me, boy. Somma day you gonna be runna da business, you gonna
have a beautiful wife, lotsa

money, a big-a home and maybe a couple of bambinos."

"Somma day you gonna come-a home and maybe finda you wife inna bed with
another man. Whatta you gonna do then? Pointa to you watch and say,
'Time's
Up' ?"


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                         WHY MEN ARE NEVER DEPRESSED:

Men Are Just Happier People - What do you expect from such simple
creatures?
Your last name stays put. The garage is all yours. Wedding plans take care
of themselves. Chocolate is just another snack. You can be President. You
can never be pregnant.

You can wear a white T-shirt to a water park. You can wear NO shirt to a
water park. Car mechanics tell you the truth. The world is your urinal.

You never have to drive to another gas station restroom because this one is
just too icky. You don't have to stop and think of which way to turn a nut
on a bolt. Same work, more pay. Wrinkles add character. Wedding
dress$5000.
Tux rental-$100. People never stare at your chest when you're talking to
them. New shoesdon't cut, blister, or mangle your feet. One mood all the
time.

Phone conversations are over in 30 seconds flat. You know stuff about
tanks.
A five-day vacation requires only one suitcase.. You can open all your own
jars. You get extra credit for the slightest act of thoughtfulness. If
someone forgets to invite you, he or she can still be your friend.

Your underwear is $8.95 for a three-pack. Three pairs of shoes are more
than enough.. You almost never have strap problems in public. You are
unable to see wrinkles in your clothes. Everything on your face stays its
original color. The same hairstyle lasts for years, maybe decades. You
only have to shave your face and neck. You can play with toys all your
life. One wallet and one pair of shoes -- one color for all seasons. You
can wear shorts no matter how your legs look. You can "do" your nails with
a pocket knife. You have freedom of choice concerning growing a mustache.

You can do Christmas shopping for 25 relatives on December 24in 25 minutes.

No wonder men are happier.


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                       24 things about to become extinct!

24. Yellow Pages This year will be pivotal for the global Yellow Pages
industry. Much like newspapers, print Yellow Pages will continue to bleed
dollars to their various digital counterparts, from Internet Yellow Pages
(IYPs), to local search engines and combination search/listing services
like
Reach Local and Yodel Factors like an acceleration of the print 'fade rate'
and the looming recession will contribute to the onslaught. One research
firm predicts the falloff in usage of newspapers and print Yellow Pages
could even reach 10% this year -- much higher than the 2%-3% fade rate
seen in past years.

23. Classified Ads The Internet has made so many things obsolete that
newspaper classified ads might sound like just another trivial item on a
long list. But this is one of those harbingers of the future that could
signal the end of civilization as we know it. The argument is that if
newspaper classifieds are replaced by free online listings at sites like
Craigslist. org and Google Base, then newspapers are not far behind them.

22. Movie Rental Stores While Netflix is looking up at the moment,
Blockbuster keeps closing store locations by the hundreds. It still has
about 6,000 left across the world, but those keep dwindling and the stock
is down considerably in 2008, especially since the company gave up a quest
of
Circuit City. Movie Gallery, which owned the Hollywood Video brand, closed
up shop earlier this year. Countless small video chains and mom-and-pop
stores have given up the ghost already.

21. Dial-up Internet Access Dial-up connections have fallen from 40% in
2001 to 10% in 2008. The combination of an infrastructure to accommodate
affordable high speed Internet connections and the disappearing home phone
have all but pounded the final nail in the coffin of dial-up Internet
access.

20. Phone Landlines According to a survey from the National Center for
Health Statistics, at the end of 2007, nearly one in six homes was
cell-only and, of those homes that had landlines, one in eight only
received calls on their cells.

19. Chesapeake Bay Blue Crabs Maryland's icon, the blue crab, has been
fading away in Chesapeake Bay. Last year Maryland saw the lowest harvest
(22 million pounds) since 1945. Just four decades ago the bay produced 96
million pounds. The population is down 70% since 1990, when they first did
a formal count. There are only about 120 million crabs in the bay and they
think they need 200 million for a sustainable population. Over-fishing,
pollution, invasive species and global warming get the blame.

18. VCRs For the better part of three decades, the VCR was a best-seller
and staple in every American household until being completely decimated by
the
DVD, and now the Digital Video Recorder (DVR). In fact, the only remnants
of the VHS age at your local Wal-Mart or Radio Shack are blank VHS tapes
these days. Pre-recorded VHS tapes are largely gone and VHS decks are
practically nowhere to be found. They served us so well.

17. Ash Trees In the late 1990s, a pretty, iridescent green species of
beetle, now known as the emerald ash borer, hitched a ride to North
America with ash wood products imported from eastern Asia. In less than a
decade,
its larvae have killed millions of trees in the Midwest, and continue to
spread. They've killed more than 30 million ash trees in southeastern
Michigan alone, with tens of millions more lost in Ohio and Indiana. More
than
7.5 billion ash trees are currently at risk.

16. Ham Radio Amateur radio operators enjoy personal (and often worldwide)
wireless communications with each other and are able to support their
communities with emergency and disaster communications if necessary, while
increasing their personal knowledge of electronics and radio theory.
However, proliferation of the Internet and its popularity among youth has
caused the decline of amateur radio. In the past five years alone, the
number of people holding active ham radio licenses has dropped by 50,000,
even though Morse Code is no longer a requirement.

15. The Swimming Hole Thanks to our litigious society, swimming holes are
becoming a thing of the past. '20/20' reports that swimming hole owners,
like Robert Every in High Falls, NY, are shutting them down out of worry
that if someone gets hurt they'll sue. And that's exactly what happened in
Seattle. The city of Bellingham was sued by Katie Hofstetter who was
paralyzed in a fall at a popular swimming hole in Whatcom Falls Park. As
injuries occur and lawsuits follow, expect more swimming holes to post
'Keep out!' signs.

14. Answering Machines The increasing disappearance of answering machines
is directly tied to No 20 our list -- the decline of landlines. According
to USA Today, the number of homes that only use cell phones jumped 159%
between 2004 and 2007. It has been particularly bad in New York; since
2000, landline usage has dropped 55%. It's logical that as cell phones
rise,
many of them replacing traditional landlines, that there will be fewer
answering machines.

13. Cameras That Use Film It doesn't require a statistician to prove the
rapid disappearance of the film camera in America. Just look to companies
like Nikon, the professional's choice for quality camera equipment. In
2006,
it announced that it would stop making film cameras, pointing to the
shrinking market -- only 3% of its sales in 2005, compared to 75% of sales
from digital cameras and equipment.

12. Incandescent Bulbs Before a few years ago, the standard 60-watt (or,
yikes, 100-watt) bulb was the mainstay of every U. S. home. With the green
movement and all-things-sustainable-energy crowd, the Compact Fluorescent
Lightbulb (CFL) is largely replacing the older, Edison-era incandescent
bulb. The EPA reports that 2007 sales for Energy Star CFLs nearly doubled
from 2006, and these sales accounted for approximately 20 percent of the
U. S.
light bulb market. And according to USA Today, a new energy bill plans to
phase out incandescent bulbs in the next four to 12 years.

11. Stand-Alone Bowling Alleys BowlingBalls. US claims there are still 60
million Americans who bowl at least once a year, but many are not bowling
in stand-alone bowling alleys. Today most new bowling alleys are part of
facilities for all types or recreation including laser tag, go-karts,
bumper cars, video game arcades, climbing walls and glow miniature golf.
Bowling lanes also have been added to many non-traditional venues such as
adult communities, hotels and resorts, and gambling casinos.

10. The Milkman According to the U. S. Department of Agriculture, in 1950,
over half of the milk delivered was to the home in quart bottles, by 1963,
it was about a third and by 2001, it represented only 0.4% percent.
Nowadays most milk is sold through supermarkets in gallon jugs. The steady
decline in home-delivered milk is blamed, of course, on the rise of the
supermarket,
better home refrigeration and longer-lasting milk. Although some milkmen
still make the rounds in pockets of the U. S., they are certainly a dying
breed.

9. Hand-Written Letters In 2006, the Radicati Group estimated that,
worldwide, 183 billion e-mails were sent each day. Two million each second.
By November of 2007, an estimated 3.3 billion Earthlings owned cell phones,
and 80% of the world's population had access to cell phone coverage. In
2004, half-a-trillion text messages were sent, and the number has no doubt
increased exponentially since then. So where amongst this gorge of gabble
is there room for the elegant, polite hand-written letter?

8. Wild Horses It is estimated that 100 years ago, as many as two million
horses were roaming free within the United States. In 2001, National
Geographic News estimated that the wild horse population had decreased to
about 50,000 head. Currently, the National Wild Horse and Burro Advisory
board states that there are 32,000 free roaming horses in ten Western
states, with half of them residing in Nevada. The Bureau of Land
Management is seeking to reduce the total number of free range horses to
27,000,
possibly by selective euthanasia.

7. Personal Checks According to an American Bankers Assoc. report, a net
23% of consumers plan to decrease their use of checks over the next two
years,
while a net 14% plan to increase their use of PIN debit. Bill payment
remains the last stronghold of paper-based payments -- for the time being.
Checks continue to be the most commonly used bill payment method, with 71%
of consumers paying at least one recurring bill per month by writing a
check. However, on a bill-by-bill basis, checks account for only 49% of
consumers' recurring bill payments (down from 72% in 2001 and 60% in
2003).
6. Drive-in Theaters During the peak in 1958, there were more than 4,000
drive-in theaters in this country, but in 2007 only 405 drive-ins were
still operating. Exactly zero new drive-ins have been built since 2005.
Only one reopened in 2005 and five reopened in 2006, so there isn't much
of a movement toward reviving the closed ones.

5. Mumps & Measles Despite what's been in the news lately, the measles and
mumps actually, truly are disappearing from the United States. In 1964,
212,000 cases of mumps were reported in the U. S. By 1983, this figure had
dropped to 3,000, thanks to a vigorous vaccination program. Prior to the
introduction of the measles vaccine, approximately half a million cases of
measles were reported in the U. S. annually, resulting in 450 deaths. In
2005, only 66 cases were recorded.

4. Honey Bees Perhaps nothing on our list of disappearing America is so
dire; plummeting so enormously; and so necessary to the survival of our
food supply as the honey bee. Very scary. 'Colony Collapse Disorder,' or
CCD, has spread throughout the U. S. and Europe over the past few years,
wiping out 50% to 90% of the colonies of many beekeepers -- and along with
it, their livelihood.

3. News Magazines and TV News While the TV evening newscasts haven't gone
anywhere over the last several decades, their audiences have. In 1984, in
a story about the diminishing returns of the evening news, the New York
Times reported that all three network evening-news programs combined had
only 40.9 million viewers. Fast forward to 2008, and what they have today
is half that.

2. Analog TV According to the Consumer Electronics Association, 85% of
homes in the U. S. get their television programming through cable or
satellite providers. For the remaining 15% -- or 13 million individuals --
who are using rabbit ears or a large outdoor antenna to get their local
stations,
change is in the air. If you are one of these people you'll need to get a
new TV or a converter box in order to get the new stations which will only
be broadcast in digital.

1. The Family Farm Since the 1930s, the number of family farms has been
declining rapidly. According to the USDA, 5.3 million farms dotted the
nation in 1950, but this number had declined to 2.1 million by the 2003
farm census (data from the 2007 census hasn't yet been published).
Ninety-one percent of theU. S. FARMS are small Family Farms.

Both interesting and saddening, isn't it?


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What's the biggest difference between men and women?

What they mean, when they say: "I got through a whole box of tissues
watching that film."


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FIVE RULES FOR MEN TO FOLLOW TO A HAPPY LIFE:

1. It's important to have a woman, who helps at home, Who cooks from time
to time, cleans up and has a job.

2. It's important to have a woman, who can make you Laugh.

3. It's important to have a woman, who you can trust And who doesn't lie to
you.

4. It's important to have a woman, who is good in bed And who likes to be
with you.

5. It's very, very important that these four women Do not know each other.


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                               Something to think about

Here's something to think about.

I recently picked a new primary care doctor.

After two visits and exhaustive lab tests, he said I was doing 'fairly
well'.

A little concerned about that comment, I couldn't resist asking him, 'Do
you think I'll live to be 80?'

He asked, 'Do you smoke tobacco, or drink beer or wine?'

'Oh no,' I replied. 'I'm not doing drugs, either!'

Then he asked, 'Do you eat rib-eye steaks and barbecued ribs?

'I said, 'Not much... my former doctor said that all red meat is very
unhealthy!'

'Do you spend a lot of time in the sun, like playing golf, sailing, hiking,
or bicycling?'

'No, I don't,' I said.

He asked, 'Do you, party with friends, drive fast cars, travel a lot, or
have a lot of s*x?'

'No,' I said.

He looked at me and said,... 'Then, why do you even give a sh*t?


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Once upon a time one day, long, long, long, long, long ago, there lived a
woman who did not whine, nag, or bitch.

But it was a long long long long long time ago, and it was just that one
day (unfortunately).

The End


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                                           School

The first day of school our professor introduced himself and challenged us
to get to know someone we didn't already know. I stood up to look around
when a gentle hand touched my shoulder.

I turned around to find a wrinkled, little old lady beaming up at me with a
smile that lit up her entire being.

She said, 'Hi handsome. My name is Rose. I'm eighty-seven years old. Can I
give you a hug?'

I laughed and enthusiastically responded, 'Of course you may!' and she gave
me a giant squeeze.

'Why are you in college at such a young, innocent age?' I asked.

She jokingly replied, 'I'm here to meet a rich husband, get married, and
have a couple of kids...'

'No seriously,' I asked. I was curious what may have motivated her to be
taking on this challenge at her age.

'I always dreamed of having a college education and now I'm getting one!'
she told me.

After class we walked to the student union building and shared a chocolate
milkshake.

We became instant friends. Every day for the next three months we would
leave class together and talk nonstop. I was always mesmerized listening
to this 'time machine' as she shared her wisdom and experience with me.

Over the course of the year, Rose became a campus icon and she easily made
friends wherever she went. She loved to dress up and she reveled in the
attention bestowed upon her from the other students. She was living it up.

At the end of the semester we invited Rose to speak at our football
banquet.
I'll never forget what she taught us. She was introduced and stepped up to
the podium. As she began to deliver her prepared speech, she dropped her
three by five cards on the floor. Frustrated and a little embarrassed she
leaned into the microphone and simply said, 'I'm sorry I'm so jittery. I
gave up beer for Lent and this whiskey is killing me! I'll never get my
speech back in order so let me just tell you what I know.'

As we laughed she cleared her throat and began, ' We do not stop playing
because we are old; we grow old because we stop playing.

There are only four secrets to staying young, being happy, and achieving
success. You have to laugh and find humor every day. You've got to have a
dream. When you lose your dreams, you die.

We have so many people walking around who are dead and don't even know it!

There is a huge difference between growing older and growing up.

If you are nineteen years old and lie in bed for one full year and don't do
one productive thing, you will turn twenty years old. If I am eighty-seven
years old and stay in bed for a year and never do anything I will turn
eighty-eight.

Anybody! can grow older. That doesn't take any talent or ability. The idea
is to grow up by always finding opportunity in change. Have no regrets.

The elderly usually don't have regrets for what we did, but rather for
things we did not do. The only people who fear death are those with
regrets.'

She concluded her speech by courageously singing 'The Rose.'

She challenged each of us to study the lyrics and live them out in our
daily lives. At the year's end Rose finished the college degree she had
begun all those years ago.

One week after graduation Rose died peacefully in her sleep.

Over two thousand college students attended her funeral in tribute to the
wonderful woman who taught by example that it's never too late to be all
you can possibly be.


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                        BUTTERCUPS AND GOLF BALLS

Towards the end of the golf course, Dave hit his ball into the woods and
found it in a patch of pretty yellow buttercups. Trying to get his ball
back in play, he ended up thrashing just about every buttercup in the
patch. All of a sudden, POOF! In a flash and puff of smoke, a little old
woman appeared.

She said, 'I'm Mother Nature! Do you know how long it took me to make those
buttercups? Just for doing what you have done, you won't have any butter
for your popcorn for the rest of your life: better still, you won't have
any butter for your toast for the rest of your life. As a matter of fact,
you'll never have any butter for anything the rest of your life!'

Then POOF! She was gone!

After Dave recovered from the shock, he hollered for his friend, 'Fred,
where are you?'

Fred yells back ,'I'm over here in the pussy willows.

Dave shouts back, 'DON'T SWING, Fred FOR THE LOVE OF GOD, DON'T SWING!'


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How does Batman's Mother call him in for tea?

Dinner dinner dinner dinner dinner dinner dinner dinner BATMAN!


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Lost in the Desert

So, there's a man crawling through the desert.

He had decided to try his SUV in a little bit of cross-country travel, had
great fun zooming over the badlands and through the sand, got lost, hit a
big rock, and then he couldn't get it started again. There were no cell
phone towers anywhere near, so his cell phone was useless. He had no
family,
his parents had died a few years before in an auto accident, and his few
friends had no idea he was out here.

He stayed with the car for a day or so, but his one bottle of water ran out
and he was getting thirsty. He thought maybe he knew the direction back,
now that he'd paid attention to the sun and thought he'd figured out which
way was north, so he decided to start walking. He figured he only had to go
about 30 miles or so and he'd be back to the small town he'd gotten gas in
last.

He thinks about walking at night to avoid the heat and sun, but based upon
how dark it actually was the night before, and given that he has no
flashlight, he's afraid that he'll break a leg or step on a rattlesnake.
So he puts on some sun block and puts the rest in his pocket for
reapplication later, brings an umbrella he'd had in the back of the SUV
with him to give him a little shade, pours the windshield wiper fluid into
his water bottle in case he gets that desperate, brings his pocket knife in
case he finds a cactus that looks like it might have water in it, and heads
out in the direction he thinks is right.

He walks for the entire day. By the end of the day he's really thirsty.
He's been sweating all day, and his lips are starting to crack. He's
reapplied the sunblock twice, and tried to stay under the umbrella, but he
still feels sunburned. The windshield wiper fluid sloshing in the bottle in
his pocket is really getting tempting now. He knows that it's mainly water
and some ethanol and colouring, but he also knows that they add some kind
of poison to it to keep people from drinking it. He wonders what the
poison is, and whether the poison would be worse than dying of thirst.

He pushes on, trying to get to that small town before dark.

By the end of the day he starts getting worried. He figures he's been
walking at least 3 miles an hour, according to his watch for over 10
hours.
That means that if his estimate was right that he should be close to the
town. But he doesn't recognize any of this. He had to cross a dry creek
bed a mile or two back, and he doesn't remember coming through it in the
SUV. He figures that maybe he got his direction off just a little and that
the dry creek bed was just off to one side of his path. He tells himself
that he's close, and that after dark he'll start seeing the town lights
over one of these hills, and that'll be all he needs. As it gets darker he
starts stumbling over small rocks and things so he finds a spot and sits
down to wait for full dark and the town lights.

Full dark comes before he knows it. He must have dozed off. He stands back
up and turns all the way around. He sees nothing but stars.

He wakes up the next morning feeling absolutely lousy. His eyes are gummy
and his mouth and nose feel like they're full of sand. He is so thirsty
that he can't even swallow. He barely got any sleep because it was so
cold. He'd forgotten how cold it got at night in the desert and hadn't
noticed it the night before because he'd been in his car.

He knows the Rule of Threes: three minutes without air, three days without
water, or three weeks without food, then you die. Some people can make it
a little longer, in the best situations. But the desert heat and having to
walk and sweat isn't the best situation to be without water. He figures,
unless he finds water, this is his last day.

He rinses his mouth out with a little of the windshield wiper fluid. He
waits a while after spitting that little bit out, to see if his mouth goes
numb, or he feels dizzy or something. Has his mouth gone numb? Is it just
in his mind? He's not sure. He'll go a little farther, and if he still
doesn't find water, he'll try drinking some of the fluid.

Then he has to face his next, harder question - which way does he go from
here? Does he keep walking the same way he was yesterday (assuming that he
still knows which way that is), or does he try a new direction? He has no
idea what to do.

Looking at the hills and dunes around him, he thinks he knows the direction
he was heading before. Just going by a feeling, he points himself somewhat
to the left of that, and starts walking.

As he walks, the day starts heating up. The desert, too cold just a couple
of hours before, soon becomes an oven again. He sweats a little at first,
and then stops. He starts getting worried at that - when you stop sweating
he knows that means you're in trouble - usually right before heat stroke.

He decides that it's time to try the windshield wiper fluid. He can't wait
any longer - if he passes out, he's dead. He stops in the shade of a large
rock, takes the bottle out, opens it, and takes a mouthful. He slowly
swallows it, making it last as long as he can. It feels so good in his dry
and cracked throat that he doesn't even care about the nasty taste. He
takes another mouthful, and makes it last too. Slowly, he drinks half the
bottle.
He figures that since he's drinking it, he might as well drink enough to
make some difference and keep himself from passing out.

He's quit worrying about the denaturing of the wiper fluid. If it kills
him,
it kills him - if he didn't drink it, he'd die anyway. Besides, he's pretty
sure that whatever substance they denature the fluid with is just designed
to make you sick - their way of keeping winos from buying cheap wiper
fluid for the ethanol content. He can handle throwing up, if it comes to
that.

He walks. He walks in the hot, dry, windless desert. Sand, rocks, hills,
dunes, the occasional scrawny cactus or dried bush. No sign of water.
Sometimes he'll see a little movement to one side or the other, but
whatever moved is usually gone before he can focus his eyes on it;
probably birds,
lizards, or mice. Maybe snakes, although they probably move more at night.
He's careful to stay away from the movements.

After a while, he begins to stagger. He's not sure if it's fatigue, heat
stroke finally catching him, or maybe he was wrong and the denaturing of
the wiper fluid was worse than he thought. He tries to steady himself, and
keep going.

After more walking, he comes to a large stretch of sand. This is good! He
knows he passed over a stretch of sand in the SUV - he remembers doing
donuts in it. Or at least he thinks he remembers it - he's getting woozy
enough and tired enough that he's not sure what he remembers any more or
if he's hallucinating. But he thinks he remembers it. So he heads off into
it,
trying to get to the other side, hoping that it gets him closer to the
town.
He was heading for a town, wasn't he? He thinks he was. He isn't sure any
more. He's not even sure how long he's been walking any more. Is it still
morning? Or has it moved into afternoon and the sun is going down again?
It must be afternoon - it seems like it's been too long since he started
out.

He walks through the sand.

After a while, he comes to a big dune in the sand. This is bad. He doesn't
remember any dunes when driving over the sand in his SUV. Or at least he
doesn't think he remembers any. This is very bad.

But, he has no other direction to go. Too late to turn back now. He figures
that he'll get to the top of the dune and see if he can see anything from
there that helps him find the town. He keeps going up the dune.

Halfway up, he slips in the bad footing of the sand for the second or third
time, and falls to his knees. He doesn't feel like getting back up - he'll
just fall down again. So, he keeps going up the dune on his hand and
knees.

While crawling, if his throat weren't so dry, he'd laugh. He's finally
gotten to the hackneyed image of a man lost in the desert - crawling
through the sand on his hands and knees. If would be the perfect image, he
imagines,
if only his clothes were more ragged. The people crawling through the
desert in the cartoons always had ragged clothes. But his have lasted
without any rips so far. Somebody will probably find his desiccated corpse
half buried in the sand years from now, and his clothes will still be in
fine shape -
shake the sand out, and a good wash, and they'd be wearable again. He
wishes his throat were wet enough to laugh. He coughs a little instead,
and it hurts.

He finally makes it to the top of the sand dune. Now that he's at the top,
he struggles a little, but manages to stand up and look around. All he sees
is sand. Sand and more sand. Behind him, about a mile away, he thinks he
sees the rocky ground he left to head into this sand. Ahead of him, more
dunes, more sand. This isn't where he drove his SUV. This is Hell. Or
close enough.

Again, he doesn't know what to do. He decides to drink the rest of the
wiper fluid while figuring it out. He takes out the bottle, and is
removing the cap, when he glances to the side and sees something.
Something in the sand.
At the bottom of the dune, off to the side, he sees something strange. It's
a flat area, in the sand. He stops taking the cap of the bottle off, and
tries to look closer. The area seems to be circular. And it's dark -
darker than the sand. And, there seems to be something in the middle of
it, but he can't tell what it is. He looks as hard as he can, and still
can tell from here. He's going to have to go down there and look.

He puts the bottle back in his pocket, and starts to stumble down the dune.
After a few steps, he realizes that he's in trouble - he's not going to be
able to keep his balance. After a couple of more sliding, tottering steps,
he falls and starts to roll down the dune. The sand it so hot when his body
hits it that for a minute he thinks he's caught fire on the way down - like
a movie car wreck flashing into flames as it goes over the cliff, before it
ever even hits the ground. He closes his eyes and mouth, covers his face
with his hands, and waits to stop rolling.

He stops, at the bottom of the dune. After a minute or two, he finds enough
energy to try to sit up and get the sand out of his face and clothes. When
he clears his eyes enough, he looks around to make sure that the dark spot
in the sand it still there and he hadn't just imagined it.

So, seeing the large, flat, dark spot on the sand is still there, he begins
to crawl towards it. He'd get up and walk towards it, but he doesn't seem
to have the energy to get up and walk right now. He must be in the final
stages of dehydration he figures, as he crawls. If this place in the sand
doesn't have water, he'll likely never make it anywhere else. This is his
last chance.

He gets closer and closer, but still can't see what's in the middle of the
dark area. His eyes won't quite focus any more for some reason. And
lifting his head up to look takes so much effort that he gives up trying.
He just keeps crawling.

Finally, he reaches the area he'd seen from the dune. It takes him a minute
of crawling on it before he realizes that he's no longer on sand - he's now
crawling on some kind of dark stone. Stone with some kind of marking on it
-
a pattern cut into the stone. He's too tired to stand up and try to see
what the pattern is - so he just keeps crawling. He crawls towards the
centre where his blurry eyes still see something in the middle of the dark
stone area.

His mind, detached in a strange way, notes that either his hands and knees
are so burnt by the sand that they no longer feel pain, or that this dark
stone, in the middle of a burning desert with a pounding, punishing sun
overhead, doesn't seem to be hot. It almost feels cool. He considers lying
down on the nice cool surface.

Cool, dark stone. Not a good sign. He must be hallucinating this. He's
probably in the middle of a patch of sand, already lying face down and
dying, and just imagining this whole thing. A desert mirage. Soon the
beautiful women carrying pitchers of water will come up and start giving
him a drink. Then he'll know he's gone.

He decides against laying down on the cool stone. If he's going to die here
in the middle of this hallucination, he at least wants to see what's in the
centre before he goes. He keeps crawling.

It's the third time that he hears the voice before he realizes what he's
hearing. He would swear that someone just said, Greetings, traveller. You
do not look well. Do you hear me?

He stops crawling. He tries to look up from where he is on his hands and
knees, but it's too much effort to lift his head. So he tries something
different - he leans back and tries to sit up on the stone. After a few
seconds, he catches his balance, avoids falling on his face, sits up, and
tries to focus his eyes. Blurry. He rubs his eyes with the back of his
hands and tries again. Better this time.

Yep. He can see. He's sitting in the middle of a large, flat, dark expanse
of stone. Directly next to him, about three feet away, is a white post or
pole about two inches in diameter and sticking up about four or five feet
out of the stone, at an angle.

And wrapped around this white rod, tail with rattle on it hovering and
seeming to be ready to start rattling, is what must be a fifteen foot long
desert diamondback rattlesnake, looking directly at him.

He stares at the snake in shock. He doesn't have the energy to get up and
run away. He doesn't even have the energy to crawl away. This is it, his
final resting place. No matter what happens, he's not going to be able to
move from this spot.

Well, at least dying of a bite from this monster should be quicker than
dying of thirst. He'll face his end like a man. He struggles to sit up a
little straighter. The snake keeps watching him. He lifts one hand and
waves it in the snake's direction, feebly. The snake watches the hand for
a moment, and then goes back to watching the man, looking into his eyes.

Hmmm. Maybe the snake had no interest in biting him? It hadn't rattled yet
-
that was a good sign. Maybe he wasn't going to die of snake bite after all.

He then remembers that he'd looked up when he'd reached the centre here
because he thought he'd heard a voice. He was still very woozy - he was
likely to pass out soon, the sun still beat down on him even though he was
now on cool stone. He still didn't have anything to drink. But maybe he had
actually heard a voice. This stone didn't look natural. Nor did that white
post sticking up out of the stone. Someone had to have built this. Maybe
they were still nearby. Maybe that was who talked to him. Maybe this snake
was even their pet, and that's why it wasn't biting.

He tries to clear his throat to say, Hello", but his throat is too dry. All
that comes out is a coughing or wheezing sound. There is no way he's going
to be able to talk without something to drink. He feels his pocket, and
the bottle with the wiper fluid is still there. He shakily pulls the
bottle out,
almost losing his balance and falling on his back in the process. This
isn't good. He doesn't have much time left, by his reckoning, before he
passes out.

He gets the lid off of the bottle, manages to get the bottle to his lips,
and pours some of the fluid into his mouth. He sloshes it around, and then
swallows it. He coughs a little. His throat feels better. Maybe he can
talk now.

He tries again. Ignoring the snake, he turns to look around him, hoping to
spot the owner of this place, and croaks out, Hello? Is there anyone here?

He hears, from his side, Greetings. What is it that you want?

He turns his head, back towards the snake. That's where the sound had
seemed to come from. The only thing he can think of is that there must be
a speaker, hidden under the snake, or maybe built into that post. He
decides to try asking for help.

Please, he croaks again, suddenly feeling dizzy, I'd love to not be thirsty
any more. I've been a long time without water. Can you help me?

Looking in the direction of the snake, hoping to see where the voice was
coming from this time, he is shocked to see the snake rear back, open its
mouth, and speak. He hears it say, as the dizziness overtakes him and he
falls forward, face first on the stone, Very well, coming up". A piercing
pain shoots through his shoulder. Suddenly he is awake. He sits up and
grabs his shoulder, wincing at the throbbing pain. He's momentarily
disoriented as he looks around, and then he remembers - the crawl across
the sand, the dark area of stone, the snake. He sees the snake, still
wrapped around the tilted white post, still looking at him.

He reaches up and feels his shoulder, where it hurts. It feels slightly
wet.
He pulls his fingers away and looks at them - blood. He feels his shoulder
again - his shirt has what feels like two holes in it - two puncture holes
-
they match up with the two aching spots of pain on his shoulder. He had
been bitten. By the snake.

It'll feel better in a minute." He looks up - it's the snake talking. He
hadn't dreamed it. Suddenly he notices - he's not dizzy any more. And more
importantly, he's not thirsty any more - at all!

Have I died? Is this the afterlife? Why are you biting me in the afterlife?

"Sorry about that, but I had to bite you, says the snake. That's the way I
work. It all comes through the bite. Think of it as natural medicine.

"You bit me to help me? Why aren't I thirsty any more? Did you give me a
drink before you bit me? How did I drink enough while unconscious to not
be thirsty any more? I haven't had a drink for over two days. Well, except
for the windshield wiper fluid... hold it, how in the world does a snake
talk?
Are you real? Are you some sort of Disney animation?

"No, says the snake", I'm real. As real as you or anyone is, anyway. I
didn't give you a drink. I bit you. That's how it works - it's what I do.
I bite. I don't have hands to give you a drink, even if I had water just
sitting around here.

The man sat stunned for a minute. Here he was, sitting in the middle of the
desert on some strange stone that should be hot but wasn't, talking to a
snake that could talk back and had just bitten him. And he felt better.
Not great - he was still starving and exhausted, but much better - he was
no longer thirsty. He had started to sweat again, but only slightly. He
felt hot, in this sun, but it was starting to get lower in the sky, and
the cool stone beneath him was a relief he could notice now that he was no
longer dying of thirst.

I might suggest that we take care of that methanol you now have in your
system with the next request", continued the snake. I can guess why you
drank it, but I'm not sure how much you drank, or how much methanol was
left in the wiper fluid. That stuff is nasty. It'll make you go blind in a
day or two, if you drank enough of it.

" Mmm, n-next request? said the man. He put his hand back on his hurting
shoulder and backed away from the snake a little.

That's the way it works. If you like, that is", explained the snake. You
get three requests. Call them wishes, if you wish." The snake grinned at
his own joke, and the man drew back a little further from the show of
fangs.

But there are rules", the snake continued. The first request is free. The
second requires an agreement of secrecy. The third requires the binding of
responsibility." The snake looks at the man seriously.

By the way, the snake says suddenly, my name is Nathan. Old Nathan, Samuel
used to call me. He gave me the name. Before that, most of the Bound used
to just call me 'Snake'. But that got old, and Samuel wouldn't stand for
it. He said that anything that could talk needed a name. He was big into
names. You can call me Nate, if you wish." Again, the snake grinned. Sorry
if I don't offer to shake, but I think you can understand - my shake sounds
somewhat threatening." The snake gave his rattle a little shake.

Umm, my name is Jack, said the man, trying to absorb all of this. Jack
Samson.

Can I ask you a question?" Jack says suddenly. What happened to the
poison... umm, in your bite? Why aren't I dying now? How did you do that?
What do you mean by that's how you work?

"That's more than one question, grins Nate. But I'll still try to answer
all of them. First, yes, you can ask me a question." The snake's grin gets
wider. Second, the poison is in you. It changed you. You now no longer need
to drink. That's what you asked for. Or, well, technically, you asked to
not be thirsty any more - but 'any more' is such a vague term. I decided
to make it permanent - now, as long as you live, you shouldn't need to
drink much at all. Your body will conserve water very efficiently. You
should be able to get enough just from the food you eat - much like a
creature of the desert.
You've been changed.

For the third question, Nate continues", you are still dying. Besides the
effects of that methanol in your system, you're a man - and men are
mortal.
In your current state, I give you no more than about another 50 years.
Assuming you get out of this desert, alive, that is." Nate seemed vastly
amused at his own humour, and continued his wide grin.

As for the fourth question, Nate said, looking more serious as far as Jack
could tell, as Jack was just now working on his ability to read
talking-snake emotions from snake facial features, first you have to agree
to make a second request and become bound by the secrecy, or I can't tell
you.

" Wait, joked Jack isn't this where you say you could tell me, but you'd
have to kill me?

" I thought that was implied." Nate continued to look serious.

Mmm... yeah. Jack leaned back a little as he remembered again that he was
talking to a fifteen foot poisonous reptile with a reputation for having a
nasty temper. So, what is this 'Bound by Secrecy' stuff, and can you really
stop the effects of the methanol? Jack thought for a second. And, what do
you mean methanol, anyway? I thought these days they use ethanol in wiper
fluid, and just denature it?

They may, I don't really know, said Nate. I haven't gotten out in a while.
Maybe they do. All I know is that I smell methanol on your breath and on
that bottle in your pocket. And the blue colour of the liquid when you
pulled it out to drink some let me guess that it was wiper fluid. I assume
that they still colour wiper fluid blue?

Yeah, they do, said Jack.

I figured, replied Nate. As for being bound by secrecy - with the
fulfilment of your next request, you will be bound to say nothing about
me, this place,
or any of the information I will tell you after that, when you decide to go
back out to your kind. You won't be allowed to talk about me, write about
me, use sign language, charades, or even act in a way that will lead
someone to guess correctly about me. You'll be bound to secrecy. Of
course, I'll also ask you to promise not to give me away, and as I'm
guessing that you're a man of your word, you'll never test the binding
anyway, so you won't notice. Nate said the last part with utter
confidence. Jack, who had always prided himself on being a man of his
word, felt a little nervous at this.
Ummm, hey, Nate, who are you? How did you know that? Are you, umm,
omniscient, or something?

"Well, Jack, said Nate sadly, I can't tell you that, unless you make the
second request. Nate looked away for a minute, and then looked back.

Umm, well, ok, said Jack", what is this about a second request? What can I
ask for? Are you allowed to tell me that?

Sure! said Nate, brightening. You're allowed to ask for changes. Changes to
yourself. They're like wishes, but they can only affect you. Oh, and before
you ask, I can't give you immortality. Or omniscience. Or omnipresence for
that matter. Though I might be able to make you gaseous and yet remain
alive, and then you could spread through the atmosphere and sort of be
omnipresent. But what good would that be - you still wouldn't be
omniscient and thus still could only focus on one thing at a time. Not
very useful, at least in my opinion. Nate stopped when he realized that
Jack was staring at him.

Well, anyway, continued Nate, I'd probably suggest giving you permanent
good health. It would negate the methanol now in your system, you'd be
immune to most poisons and diseases, and you'd tend to live a very long
time, barring accident, of course. And you'll even have a tendency to
recover from accidents well. It always seemed like a good choice for a
request to me.

Cure the methanol poisoning, huh? said Jack. And keep me healthy for a long
time? Hmmm. It doesn't sound bad at that. And it has to be a request about
a change to me? I can't ask to be rich, right? Because that's not really a
change to me?

Right", nodded Nate.

Could I ask to be a genius and permanently healthy? Jack asked, hopefully.

That takes two requests, Jack.

Yeah, I figured so, said Jack. But I could ask to be a genius? I could
become the smartest scientist in the world? Or the best athlete?

Well, I could make you very smart; admitted Nate", but that wouldn't
necessarily make you the best scientist in the world. Or, I could make you
very athletic, but it wouldn't necessarily make you the best athlete
either.
You've heard the saying that 99% of genius is hard work? Well, there's some
truth to that. I can give you the talent, but I can't make you work hard.
It all depends on what you decide to do with it.

Hmmm, said Jack. Ok, I think I understand. And I get a third request, after
this one?

Maybe, said Nate, it depends on what you decide then. There are more rules
for the third request that I can only tell you about after the second
request. You know how it goes. Nate looked like he'd shrug, if he had
shoulders.

Ok, well, since I'd rather not be blind in a day or two, and permanent
health doesn't sound bad, consider that my second request. Officially. Do
I need to sign in blood or something?

No", said Nate. Just hold out your hand. Or heel. Nate grinned. Or whatever
part you want me to bite. I have to bite you again. Like I said, that's how
it works - the poison, you know, Nate said apologetically.

Jack winced a little and felt his shoulder, where the last bite was. Hey,
it didn't hurt any more. Just like Nate had said. That made Jack feel
better about the biting business. But still, standing still while a
fifteen foot snake sunk it's fangs into you. Jack stood up. Ignoring how
good it felt to be able to stand again, and the hunger starting to gnaw at
his stomach, Jack tried to decide where he wanted to get bitten. Despite
knowing that it wouldn't hurt for long, Jack knew that this wasn't going
to be easy.

Hey, Jack, Nate suddenly said, looking past Jack towards the dunes behind
him", is that someone else coming up over there?

Jack spun around and looked. Who else could be out here in the middle of
nowhere? And did they bring food?

Wait a minute, there was nobody over there. What was Nate...?

Jack let out a bellow as he felt two fangs sink into his rear end, through
his jeans...

Jack sat down carefully, favouring his tenderer buttock. I would ha e
decided, eventually, Nate. I was just thinking about it. You didn't have
to hoodwink me like that.

I've been doing this a long time, Jack, said Nate, confidently. You humans
have a hard time sitting still and letting a snake bite you -especially
one my size. And besides, admit it - it's only been a couple of minutes
and it already doesn't hurt any more, does it? That's because of the
health benefit with this one. I told you that you'd heal quickly now.

Yeah, well, still, said Jack", it's the principle of the thing. And nobody
likes being bitten in the butt! Couldn't you have gotten my calf or
something instead?

More meat in the typical human butt, replied Nate. And less chance you
accidentally kick me or move at the last second.

Yeah, right. So, tell me all of these wonderful secrets that I now qualify
to hear", answered Jack. Ok, said Nate. Do you want to ask questions
first,
or do you want me to just start talking?

Just talk, said Jack. I'll sit here and try to not think about food.

We could go try to rustle up some food for you first, if you like",
answered
Nate.

Hey! You didn't tell me you had food around here, Nate! Jack jumped up.
What do we have? Am I in walking distance to town? Or can you magically
whip up food along with your other powers? Jack was almost shouting with
excitement.
His stomach had been growling for hours.

I was thinking more like I could flush something out of its hole and bite
it for you, and you could skin it and eat it. Assuming you have a knife,
that is, replied Nate, with the grin that Jack was starting to get used
to.

Ugh, said Jack, sitting back down. I think I'll pass. I can last a little
longer before I get desperate enough to eat desert rat, or whatever else
it is you find out here. And there's nothing to burn - I'd have to eat it
raw.
No thanks. Just talk.

Ok, replied Nate, still grinning. But I'd better hurry, before you start
looking at me as food.

Nate reared back a little, looked around for a second, and then continued.
You, Jack, are sitting in the middle of the Garden of Eden.

Jack looked around at the sand and dunes and then looked back at Nate
sceptically.

Well, that's the best I can figure it, anyway, Jack, said Nate. Stand up
and look at the symbol on the rock here. Nate gestured around the dark
stone they were both sitting on with his nose.

Jack stood up and looked. Carved into the stone in a bas-relief was a
representation of a large tree. The angled-pole that Nate was wrapped
around was coming out of the trunk of the tree, right below where the main
branches left the truck to reach out across the stone. It was very well
done - it looked more like a tree had been reduced to almost two
dimensions and embedded in the stone than it did like a carving.

Jack walked around and looked at the details in the fading light of the
setting sun. He wished he'd looked at it while the sun was higher in the
sky.

Wait! The sun was setting! That meant he was going to have to spend another
night out here! Arrrgh!

Jack looked out across the desert for a little bit, and then came back and
stood next to Nate. In all the excitement, I almost forgot, Nate, said
Jack.
Which way is it back to town? And how far? I'm eventually going to have to
head back - I'm not sure I'll be able to survive by eating raw desert
critters for long. And even if I can, I'm not sure I'll want to.

It's about 30 miles that way. Nate pointed, with the rattle on his tail
this time. As far as Jack could tell, it was a direction at right angles
to the way he'd been going when he was crawling here. But that's 30 miles
by the way the crow flies. It's about 40 by the way a man walks. You
should be able to do it in about half a day with your improved endurance,
if you head out early tomorrow, Jack.

Jack looked out the way the snake had pointed for a few seconds more, and
then sat back down. It was getting dark. Not much he could do about
heading out right now. And besides, Nate was just about to get to the
interesting stuff. Garden of Eden? As best as you can figure it?

Well, yeah, as best as I and Samuel could figure it anyway", said Nate. He
figured that the story just got a little mixed up. You know, snake, in a
'tree', offering 'temptations', making bargains. That kind of stuff. But he
could never quite figure out how the Hebrews found out about this spot from
across the ocean. He worried about that for a while.

Garden of Eden, hunh? said Jack. How long have you been here, Nate?

No idea, really", replied Nate. A long time. It never occurred to me to
count years, until recently, and by then, of course, it was too late. But
I do remember when this whole place was green, so I figure it's been
thousands of years, at least.

So, are you the snake that tempted Eve? said Jack.

Beats me, said Nate. Maybe. I can't remember if the first one of your kind
that I talked to was female or not, and I never got a name, but it could
have been. And I suppose she could have considered my offer to grant
requests a 'temptation', though I've rarely had refusals.

Well, umm, how did you get here then? And why is that white pole stuck out
of the stone there? asked Jack.

Dad left me here. Or, I assume it was my dad. It was another snake - much
bigger than I was back then. I remember talking to him, but I don't
remember if it was in a language, or just kind of understanding what he
wanted. But one day, he brought me to this stone, told me about it, and
asked me to do something for him. I talked it over with him for a while,
and then agreed.
I've been here ever since.

What is this place? said Jack. And what did he ask you to do?

Well, you see this pole here, sticking out of the stone? Nate loosened his
coils around the tilted white pole and showed Jack where it descended into
the stone. The pole was tilted at about a 45 degree angle and seemed to
enter the stone in an eighteen inch slot cut into the stone. Jack leaned
over and looked. The slot was dark and the pole went down into it as far
as
Jack could see in the dim light. Jack reached out to touch the pole, but
Nate was suddenly there in the way.

You can't touch that yet, Jack, said Nate.

Why not? asked Jack.

I haven't explained it to you yet, replied Nate.

Well, it kinda looks like a lever or something, said Jack. You'd push it
that way, and it would move in the slot.

Yep, that's what it is, replied Nate.

What does it do? asked Jack. End the world?

Oh, no, said Nate nothing that drastic. It just ends humanity. I call it
'The Lever of Doom'. For the last few words Nate had used a deeper, ringing
voice. He tried to look serious for a few seconds, and then gave up and
grinned.

Jack was initially startled by Nate's pronouncement, but when Nate grinned
Jack laughed. Ha! You almost had me fooled for a second there. What does it
really do?

Oh, it really ends humanity, like I said", smirked Nate. I just thought the
voice I used was funny, didn't you?

Nate continued to grin.

A lever to end humanity? asked Jack. What in the world is that for? Why
would anyone need to end humanity?

Well, replied Nate, I get the idea that maybe humanity was an experiment.
Or maybe the Big Guy just thought, that if humanity started going really
bad,
there should be a way to end it. I'm not really sure. All I know are the
rules, and the guesses that Samuel and I had about why it's here. I didn't
think to ask back when I started here.

Rules, what rules? asked Jack.

The rules are that I can't tell anybody about it or let them touch it
unless they agree to be bound to secrecy by a bite. And that only one
human can be bound in that way at a time. That's it. explained Nate.

Jack looked somewhat shocked. You mean that I could pull the lever now?
You'd let me end humanity?

Yep, replied Nate, if you want to. Nate looked at Jack carefully. Do you
want to, Jack?

Umm, no. said Jack, stepping a little further back from the lever. Why in
the world would anyone want to end humanity? It'd take a psychotic to want
that! Or worse, a suicidal psychotic, because it would kill him too,
wouldn't it?

Yep, replied Nate, being as he'd be human too".

Has anyone ever seriously considered it? asked Nate. Any of those bound to
secrecy, that is?

Well, of course, I think they've all seriously considered it at one time or
another. Being given that kind of responsibility makes you sit down and
think, or so I'm told. Samuel considered it several times. He'd often get
disgusted with humanity, come out here, and just hold the lever for a
while.
But he never pulled it. Or you wouldn't be here. Nate grinned some more.
Jack sat down, well back from the lever. He looked thoughtful and puzzled
at the same time. After a bit, he said, So this makes me the Judge of
humanity?
I get to decide whether they keep going or just end? Me?

That seems to be it, agreed Nate.

What kind of criteria do I use to decide? said Jack. How do I make this
decision? Am I supposed to decide if they're good? Or too many of them are
bad? Or that they're going the wrong way? Is there a set of rules for that?

Nope, replied Nate. You pretty much just have to decide on your own. It's
up to you; however you want to decide it. I guess that you're just
supposed to know.

But what if I get mad at someone? Or some girl dumps me and I feel
horrible?
Couldn't I make a mistake? How do I know that I won't screw up? protested
Jack.

Nate gave his kind of snake-like shrug again. You don't. You just have to
try your best, Jack.

Jack sat there for a while, staring off into the desert that was rapidly
getting dark, chewing on a fingernail. Suddenly, Jack turned around and
looked at the snake. Nate, was Samuel the one bound to this before me?

Yep, replied Nate. He was a good guy, talked to me a lot. Taught me to read
and brought me books. I think I still have a good pile of them buried in
the sand around here somewhere. I still miss him. He died a few months
ago.

Sounds like a good guy", agreed Jack. How did he handle this, when you
first told him? What did he do?

Well, said Nate, he sat down for a while, thought about it for a bit, and
then asked me some questions, much like you're doing.

What did he ask you, if you're allowed to tell me? asked Jack.

He asked me about the third request, replied Nate.

Aha! It was Jack's turn to grin. And what did you tell him?

I told him the rules for the third request. That to get the third request
you have to agree to this whole thing. That if it ever comes to the point
that you really think that humanity should be ended, that you'll come here
and end it. You won't avoid it, and you won't wimp out. Nate looked serious
again. And you'll be bound to do it too, Jack.

Hmmm. Jack looked back out into the darkness for a while.

Nate watched him, waiting.

Nate, continued Jack, quietly, eventually. What did Samuel ask for with his
third request?

Nate sounded like he was grinning again as he replied, also quietly,
Wisdom,
Jack. He asked for wisdom, as much as I could give him.

Ok, said Jack, suddenly, standing up and facing away from Nate", give it to
me.

Nate looked at Jack's backside. Give you what, Jack?

Give me that wisdom. The same stuff that Samuel asked for. If it helped
him,
maybe it'll help me too. Jack turned his head to look back over his
shoulder at Nate. It did help him, right?

He said it did, replied Nate. But he seemed a little quieter afterward.
Like he had a lot to think about.

Well, yeah, I can see that, said Jack. So, give it to me. Jack turned to
face away from Nate again, bent over slightly and tensed up.

Nate watched Jack tense up with a little exasperation. If he bit Jack now,
Jack would likely jump out of his skin and maybe hurt them both. You
remember that you'll be bound to destroy humanity if it ever looks like it
needs it, right Jack? asked Nate, shifting position.

Yeah, yeah, I got that, replied Jack; eyes squeezed tightly shut and body
tense, not noticing the change in direction of Nate's voice.

And continued Nate, from his new position, do you remember that you'll turn
bright purple, and grow big horns and extra eyes?

Yeah, yeah... Hey, wait a minute! said Jack, opening his eyes,
straightening up and turning around. Purple?! He didn't see Nate there.
With the moonlight
Jack could see that the lever extended up from its slot in the rock without
the snake wrapped around it.

Jack heard, from behind him, Nate's Just Kidding! right before he felt the
now familiar piercing pain, this time in the other buttock.

Jack sat on the edge of the dark stone in the rapidly cooling air, his feet
extending out into the sand. He stared out into the darkness, listening to
the wind stir the sand, occasionally rubbing his butt where he'd been
recently bitten.

Nate had left for a little while, had come back with a desert-rodent-shaped
bulge somewhere in his middle, and was now wrapped back around the lever,
his tongue flicking out into the desert night's air the only sign that he
was still awake.

Occasionally Jack, with his toes absentmindedly digging in the sand while
he thought, would ask Nate a question without turning around.

Nate, do accidents count?

Nate lifted his head a little bit. What do you mean, Jack?

Jack tilted his head back like he was looking at the stars. You know
accidents. If I accidentally fall on the lever, without meaning to, does
that still wipe out humanity?

Yeah, I'm pretty sure it does, Jack. I'd suggest you be careful about that
if you start feeling wobbly, said Nate with some amusement.

A little later - Does it have to be me that pulls the lever? asked Jack.

That's the rule, Jack. Nobody else can pull it", answered Nate.

No", Jack shook his head, I meant does it have to be my hand? Could I pull
the lever with a rope tied around it? Or push it with a stick? Or throw a
rock?

Yes, those should work, replied Nate. Though I'm not sure how complicated
you could get. Samuel thought about trying to build some kind of remote
control for it once, but gave it up. Everything he'd build would be gone
by the next sunrise, if it was touching the stone, or over it. I told him
that in the past others that had been bound had tried to bury the lever so
they wouldn't be tempted to pull it, but every time the stones or sand or
whatever had disappeared.

Wow, said Jack, Cool". Jack leaned back until only his elbows kept him off
of the stone and looked up into the sky.

Nate, how long did Samuel live? One of his wishes was for health too,
right?
asked Jack.

Yes, replied Nate, it was. He lived 167 years, Jack.

Wow, 167 years. That's almost 140 more years I'll live if I live as long.
Do you know what he died of, Nate?

He died of getting tired of living, Jack, Nate said, sounding somewhat sad.

Jack turned his head to look at Nate in the starlight.

Nate looked back. Samuel knew he wasn't going to be able to stay in
society.
He figured that they'd eventually see him still alive and start questioning
it, so he decided that he'd have to disappear after a while. He faked his
death once, but changed his mind - he decided it was too early and he
could stay for a little longer. He wasn't very fond of mankind, but he
liked the attention. Most of the time, anyway. His daughter and then his
wife dying almost did him in though. He didn't stay in society much longer
after that.
He eventually came out here to spend time talking to me and thinking about
pulling the lever. A few months ago he told me he'd had enough. It was his
time.

And then he just died? asked Jack.

Nate shook his head a little. He made his fourth request, Jack. There's
only one thing you can ask for the fourth request. The last bite.

After a bit Nate continued, He told me that he was tired, that it was his
time. He reassured me that someone new would show up soon, like they
always had.

After another pause, Nate finished, Samuel's body disappeared off the stone
with the sunrise".

Jack lay back down and looked at the sky, leaving Nate alone with his
memories. It was a long time until Jack's breathing evened out into sleep.

Jack woke with the sunrise the next morning. He was a little chilled with
the morning desert air, but overall was feeling pretty good. Well, except
that his stomach was grumbling and he wasn't willing to eat raw desert
rat.

So, after getting directions to town from Nate, making sure he knew how to
get back, and reassuring Nate that he'd be back soon, Jack started the
long walk back to town. With his new health and Nate's good directions, he
made it back easily.

Jack caught a bus back to the city, and showed up for work the next day,
little worse for the wear and with a story about getting lost in the desert
and walking back out. Within a couple of days Jack had talked a friend with
a tow truck into going back out into the desert with him to fetch the SUV.
They found it after a couple of hours of searching and towed it back
without incident. Jack was careful not to even look in the direction of
Nate's lever, though their path back didn't come within sight of it.

Before the next weekend, Jack had gone to a couple of stores, including a
book store, and had gotten his SUV back from the mechanic, with a warning
to avoid any more joyriding in the desert. On Sat*rday, Jack headed back
to see
Nate. He parked a little way out of the small town near Nate, loaded up his
new backpack with camping gear and the things he was bringing for Nate, and
then started walking. He figured that walking would leave the least trail,
and he knew that while not many people camped in the desert, it wasn't
unheard of, and shouldn't really raise suspicions.

Jack had brought more books for Nate - recent books, magazines, newspapers.
Some things that would catch Nate up with what was happening in the world,
others that were just good books to read. He spent the weekend with Nate,
and then headed out again, telling Nate that he'd be back again soon, but
that he had things to do first.

Over four months later Jack was back to see Nate again. This time he
brought a laptop with him - a specially modified laptop. It had a solar
charger,
special filters and seals to keep out the sand, a satellite link-up, and a
special keyboard and joystick that Jack hoped that a fifteen-foot
rattlesnake would be able to use. And, it had been hacked to not give out
its location to the satellite.

After that Jack could e-mail Nate to keep in touch, but still visited him
fairly regularly - at least once or twice a year.

After the first year, Jack quit his job. For some reason, with the wisdom
he'd been given, and the knowledge that he could live for over 150 years,
working in a nine to five job for someone else didn't seem that worthwhile
any more. Jack went back to school.

Eventually, Jack started writing. Perhaps because of the wisdom, or perhaps
because of his new perspective, he wrote well. People liked what he wrote,
and he became well known for it. After a time, Jack bought an RV and
started travelling around the country for book signings and readings.

But, he still remembered to drop by and visit Nate occasionally.

On one of the visits Nate seemed quieter than usual. Not that Nate had been
a fountain of joy lately. Jack's best guess was that Nate was still missing
Samuel, and though Jack had tried, he still hadn't been able to replace
Samuel in Nate's eyes. Nate had been getting quieter each visit. But on
this visit Nate didn't even speak when Jack walked up to the lever. He
nodded at
Jack, and then went back to staring into the desert. Jack, respecting
Nate's silence, sat down and waited.

After a few minutes, Nate spoke. Jack, I have someone to introduce you to.

Jack looked surprised. Someone to introduce me to? Jack looked around, and
then looked carefully back at Nate. This something to do with the Big Guy?

No, no", replied Nate. This is more personal. I want you to meet my son.
Nate looked over at the nearest sand dune. Sammy!

Jack watched as a four foot long desert rattlesnake crawled from behind the
dune and up to the stone base of the lever.

Yo, Jack, said the new, much smaller snake.

Yo, Sammy replied Jack. Jack looked at Nate. Named after Samuel, I assume?

Nate nodded. Jack, I've got a favour to ask you. Could you show Sammy
around for me? Nate unwrapped himself from the lever and slithered over to
the edge of the stone and looked across the sands. When Samuel first told
me about the world, and brought me books and pictures, I wished that I
could go see it. I wanted to see the great forests, the canyons, the
cities, even the other deserts, to see if they felt and smelled the same.
I want my son to have that chance - to see the world. Before he becomes
bound here like I have been.

He's seen it in pictures, over the computer that you brought me. But I hear
that it's not the same. That being there is different. I want him to have
that. Think you can do that for me, Jack?

Jack nodded. This was obviously very important to Nate, so Jack didn't even
joke about taking a talking rattlesnake out to see the world. Yeah, I can
do that for you, Nate. Is that all you need? Jack could sense that was
something more.

Nate looked at Sammy. Sammy looked back at Nate for a second and then said,
Oh, yeah. Ummm, I've gotta go pack. Back in a little bit Jack. Nice to meet
ya! Sammy slithered back over the dune and out of sight.

Nate watched Sammy disappear and then looked back at Jack. Jack, this is my
first son. My first offspring through all the years. You don't even want to
know what it took for me to find a mate. Nate grinned to himself. But
anyway, I had a son for a reason. I'm tired. I'm ready for it to be over.
I needed a replacement.

Jack considered this for a minute. So, you're ready to come see the world,
and you wanted him to watch the lever while you were gone?

Nate shook his head. No, Jack - you're a better guesser than that. You've
already figured out - I'm bound here - there's only one way for me to
leave here. And I'm ready. It's my time to die.

Jack looked more closely at Nate. He could tell Nate had thought about this
- probably for quite a while. Jack had trouble imagining what it would be
like to be as old as Nate, but Jack could already tell that in another
hundred or two hundred years, he might be getting tired of life himself.
Jack could understand Samuel's decision, and now Nate's. So, all Jack said
was, What do you want me to do? Nate nodded. Thanks, Jack. I only want two
things. One - show Sammy around the world - let him get his fill of it,
until he's ready to come back here and take over. Two - give me the fourth
request.

I can't just decide to die, not any more than you can. I won't even die of
old age like you eventually will, even though it'll be a long time from
now.
I need to be killed. Once Sammy is back here, ready to take over, I'll be
able to die. And I need you to kill me.

I've even thought about how. Poisons and other drugs won't work on me. And
I've seen pictures of snakes that were shot - some of them live for days,
so that's out too. So, I want you to bring back a sword.

Nate turned away to look back to the dune that Sammy had gone behind. I'd
say an axe, but that's somewhat undignified - putting my head on the
ground or a chopping block like that. No, I like a sword. A time-honoured
way of going out. A dignified way to die. And, most importantly, it should
work,
even on me.

You willing to do that for me, Jack? Nate turned back to look at Jack.

Yeah, Nate, replied Jack solemnly, I think I can handle that.

Nate nodded. Good! He turned back toward the dune and shouted, Sammy!
Jack's about ready to leave! Then quietly, Thanks, Jack".

Jack didn't have anything to say to that, so he waited for Sammy to make it
back to the lever, nodded to him, nodded a final time to Nate, and then
headed into the desert with Sammy following. Over the next several years
Sammy and Jack kept in touch with Nate through e-mail as they went about
their adventures. They made a goal of visiting every country in the world,
and did a respectable job of it. Sammy had a natural gift for languages, as
Jack expected he would, and even ended up acting as a translator for Jack
in a few of the countries. Jack managed to keep the talking rattlesnake
hidden,
even so, and by the time they were nearing the end of their tour of
countries, Sammy had only been spotted a few times. While there were
several people that had seen enough to startle them greatly, nobody had
enough evidence to prove anything, and while a few wild rumours and
storied followed Jack and Sammy around, nothing ever hit the newspapers or
the public in general.

When they finished the tour of countries, Jack suggested that they try some
undersea diving. They did. And spelunking. They did that too. Sammy finally
drew the line at visiting Antarctica. He'd come to realize that Jack was
stalling. After talking to his Dad about it over e-mail, he figured out
that
Jack probably didn't want to have to kill Nate. Nate had told Sammy that
humans could be squeamish about killing friends and acquaintances.

So, Sammy eventually put his tail down (as he didn't have a foot) and told
Jack that it was time - he was ready to go back and take up his duties from
his dad. Jack, delayed it a little more by insisting that they go back to
Japan and buy an appropriate sword. He even stretched it a little more by
getting lessons in how to use the sword. But, eventually, he'd learned as
much as he was likely to without dedicating his life to it, and was
definitely competent enough to take the head off of a snake. It was time
to head back and see Nate.

When they got back to the US, Jack got the old RV out of storage where he
and Sammy had left it after their tour of the fifty states, he loaded up
Sammy and the sword, and they headed for the desert.

When they got to the small town that Jack had been trying to find those
years ago when he'd met Nate, Jack was in a funk. He didn't really feel
like walking all of the way out there. Not only that, but he'd forgotten
to figure the travel time correctly, and it was late afternoon. They'd
either have to spend the night in town and walk out tomorrow, or walk in
the dark.

As Jack was afraid that if he waited one more night he might lose his
resolve, he decided that he'd go ahead and drive the RV out there. It was
only going to be this once, and Jack would go back and cover the tracks
afterward. They ought to be able to make it out there by nightfall if they
drove, and then they could get it over tonight.

Jack told Sammy to e-mail Nate that they were coming as he drove out of
sight of the town on the road. They then pulled off the road and headed
out into the desert.

Everything went well, until they got to the sand dunes. Jack had been
nursing the RV along the whole time, over the rocks, through the creek
beds,
revving the engine the few times they almost got stuck. When they came to
the dunes, Jack didn't really think about it, he just downshifted and
headed up the first one. By the third dune, Jack started to regret that
he'd decided to try driving on the sand. The RV was fishtailing and losing
traction. Jack was having to work it up each dune slowly and was trying to
keep from losing control each time they came over the top and slid down
the other side. Sammy had come up to sit in the passenger seat, coiled up
and laughing at Jack's driving.

As they came over the top of the fourth dune, the biggest one yet, Jack saw
that this was the final dune - the stone, the lever, and somewhere Nate,
waited below. Jack put on the brakes, but he'd gone a little too far. The
RV started slipping down the other side. Jack tried turning the wheel, but
he didn't have enough traction. He pumped the brakes - no response. They
started sliding down the hill, faster and faster.

Jack felt a shock go through him as he suddenly realized that they were
heading for the lever. He looked down - the RV was directly on course for
it. If Jack didn't do something, the RV would hit it. He was about to end
humanity.

Jack steered more frantically, trying to get traction. It still wasn't
working. The dune was too steep, and the sand too loose. In a split
second,
Jack realized that his only chance would be once he hit the stone around
the lever - he should have traction on the stone for just a second before
he hit the lever - he wouldn't have time to stop, but he should be able to
steer away.

Jack took a better grip on the steering wheel and tried to turn the RV a
little bit - every little bit would help. He'd have to time his turn just
right.

The RV got to the bottom of the dune, sliding at an amazing speed in the
sand. Just before they reached the stone Jack looked across it to check
that they were still heading for the lever. They were. But Jack noticed
something else that he hadn't seen from the top of the dune. Nate wasn't
wrapped around the lever. He was off to the side of the lever, but still
on the stone, waiting for them. The problem was, he was waiting on the
same side of the lever that Jack had picked to steer towards to avoid the
lever. The RV was already starting to drift that way a little in its mad
rush across the sand and there was no way that Jack was going to be able
to go around the lever to the other side.

Jack had an instant of realization. He was either going to have to hit the
lever, or run over Nate. He glanced over at Sammy and saw that Sammy
realized the same thing.

Jack took a firmer grip on the steering wheel as the RV ran up on the
stone.
Shouting to Sammy as he pulled the steering wheel, BETTER NATE THAN LEVER ,
he ran over the snake.

THE END


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This weeks AV files are from Stumpy Steve, London Muse from Canada, Diks,
Smithie in Nottingham, Moose, Allnutts, Mitta, Burnout, David from Gymea,
and our prolific contibutor Whizzbang.


A duck story - so sweet
Something really cute happened in downtown Newcastle Michael R. is an
accounting clerk at ANZ Bank and works in town town in a second story
office building. Several weeks ago, he watched a mother duck choose the
concrete awning outside his window as the unlikely place to build a nest
above the footpath.
 Click here
The mallard laid ten eggs in a nest in the corner of the planter that is
perched over 10 metres in the air. She dutifully kept the eggs warm for
weeks, and Monday afternoon all of her ten ducklings hatched.
 Click here
Michael worried all night how the mother duck was going to get those babies
safely off their perch in a busy, urban environment to take to water, which
typically happens in the first 48 hours of a duck hatching. Tuesday
morning,
Michael watched the mother duck encourage her babies to the edge of the
perch with the intent to show them how to jump off!
 Click here
The mother flew down below and started quacking to her babies above. In his
disbelief Michael watched as the first fuzzy newborn toddled to the edge
and astonishingly leapt into thin air, crashing onto the cement below.
Michael couldn't stand to watch this risky effort. He dashed out of his
office and ran down the stairs to the sidewalk where the first obedient
duckling was stuporing near its mother from the near fatal fall.
 Click here
As the second one took the plunge, Michael jumped forward and caught it
with his bare hands before it hit the concrete. Safe and sound, he set it
by the mother and the other stunned sibling, still recovering from its
painful leap.
 Click here
One by one the babies continued to jump. Each time Michael hid under the
awning just to reach out in the nick of time as the duckling made its free
fall. The footpath came to a standstill. Time after time, Michael was able
to catch the remaining 8 and set them by their approving mother.
 Click here
As they reached the creek, the mother took over and passed him, jumping
into the river and quacking loudly. At the water's edge, he tipped the box
and helped shepherd the babies toward the water and to their mother after
their adventurous ride.
 Click here
All ten darling ducklings safely made it into the water and paddled up
snugly to mother duck Michael said the mother duck swam in circles,
looking back toward the beaming bank bookkeeper, and proudly quacking.
 Click here Click here Click here Click here

How to Demolish a Building - Las Vegas Style
 Click here

F18 cable break
 Click here

AIDS poster
 Click here

Nothing like a political cartoon to find truth
 Click here Click here Click here Click here Click here Click here
 Click here Click here Click here

Space Shuttle Pic's
 Click here

AD OF THE YEAR (ADULT)
 Click here

It's a frickin' elephant!
A class of five-year old students are learning to read.
One of them pointed at a picture in a zoo book and said,
"Look at this! It's a frickin' elephant!"
The teacher took a deep breath, then asked..."What did you call it?"
"It's a frickin' elephant! It says so on the picture!"
And so it does...
" A f r i c a n Elephant "
 Click here

The Economy Is So Bad......
 Click here

The Chameleon's changing colours
 Click here

About my raise...
 Click here

My new T-Shirt
 Click here

Tough economic times (Uncanny likeness)
 Click here Click here

Japanese dog
 Click here

Shii
 Click here

Dui
 Click here

Cure for Cancer
This is the cutest breast cancer email I have ever received.
A small request:
All you are asked to do is keep this circulating.
Dear God,
I pray for the cure of breast cancer.
Amen
 Click here

Lunatics....they're everywhere!
 Click here Click here Click here

Keep watching; even after they break apart.....
 Click here

Wildlife artist
What talent! And this was the finished product.  Pretty cool stuff, huh!
Checked out his website and it looks like he's been doing this stuff since
the '80's.
 Click here Click here Click here Click here Click here Click here
 Click here Click here Click here Click here Click here Click here
 Click here Click here Click here Click here Click here Click here
 Click here Click here Click here Click here Click here Click here
 Click here Click here Click here Click here Click here

No Zim Dollars please
 Click here


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                              Message from an FH reader

I read Bluehaze humour every Friday and I always get a chuckle. I just
wanted to let you know that I have received the 'Aspartame' email several
times. I have been a diabetic for very nearly 35 years and always use diet
soft drinks, diet jellies, etc - many are sweetened with aspartame.

These links (among numerous others on the internet) refute the claims made
in that email;

 Click here Click here Click here E+HOAX

Best regards, and keep up the great work!
LA


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AL QAIDA

OFFICE OF OSAMA BIN LADEN

CAVE 7422, TORA BORA, AFGHANISTAN

INTERNAL MEMORANDUM

To all Jihadists,

Subject: The Cave (do not distribute outside the Organization)

Hi guys. We've all been putting in long hours recently but we've really
come together as a group and I love that! However, while we continue to
fight the infidels in this New Year, we can't forget to take care of the
cave, and frankly I have a few concerns.

First of all, while it's good to be concerned about cruise missiles, we
should be even more concerned about the dust in our cave. We want to avoid
excessive dust inhalation (a health and safety issue), so we need to sweep
the cave daily.

I've done my bit on the cleaning - Rota .. have you? I've posted a sign-up
sheet near the cave reception area (next to the halal toaster).

Second, it's not often I make a video address. But when I do, I'm trying to
scare the **** out of most of the world's population, okay? That means that
while we're taping, please do not ride your scooter in the background or
keep doing the 'wassup' thing. Thanks.

Third - food. I bought a box of Dairylea recently. I clearly wrote Ossy on
the front, and put it on the top shelf. Today, two of my Dairylea slices
were gone. Consideration - that's all I'm saying.

Fourth, I'm not against team spirit and all that, but we must distance
ourselves from the infidel's bat and ball games. Please do not chant Ozzy,
ozzy, ozzy, oi, oi, oi when I ride past on the donkey. Thanks.

Fifth - graffiti. Whoever wrote OSAMA ****S DONKEYS on the group toilet
wall - it's a lie. The donkey backed into me, whilst I was relieving
myself at the edge of the mountain.

Sixth, the use of chickens is strictly for food. Assam - the old excuse
that the 'chicken backed into me, whilst I was relieving myself at the
edge of the mountain' will not be accepted in future (with donkeys, there
is a grey area).

Finally, we've heard that there may be Western soldiers in disguise trying
to infiltrate our ranks. I want to set up patrols to look for them. First
patrol will be Omar, Muhammad, Abdul, Akbar and Dave.

Love you lots,

Group Hug.

Os.

PS - I'm sick of having Osama Bed Linen scribbled on my laundry bag. Cut it
out, it's not funny anymore.


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                                     The Four Cats

Four men were bragging about how smart their cats were. The first man was
an
Engineer, the second man was an Accountant, the third man was a Chemist,
and the fourth man was a Government Employee.

To show off, the Engineer called his cat, 'T-square, do your stuff.'
T-square pranced over to the desk, took out some paper and pen and promptly
drew a circle, a square, and a triangle.

Everyone agreed that was pretty smart.

But the Accountant said his cat could do better. He called his cat and
said,
'Spreadsheet, do your stuff.' Spreadsheet went out to the kitchen and
returned with a dozen cookies. He divided them into 4 equal piles of 3
cookies.

Everyone agreed that was good.

But the Chemist said his cat could do better. He called his cat and said,
'Measure, do your stuff.' Measure got up, walked to the fridge, took out a
quart of milk, got a 10 ounce glass from the cupboard and poured exactly 8
ounces without spilling a drop.

Everyone agreed that was pretty good.

Then the three men turned to the Government Employee and said, 'What can
your cat do?'

The Government Employee called his cat and said, 'CoffeeBreak, do your
stuff.'

CoffeeBreak jumped to his feet....... ate the cookies......... drank the
milk........ sh*t on the paper........ screwed the other three cats.......
claimed he injured his back while doing so....... filed a grievance report
for unsafe working conditions....... put in for Worker's
Compensation................ and went home for the rest of the month on
sick leave.............

AND THAT, MY FRIENDS, IS WHY EVERYONE WANTS TO WORK FOR THE GOVERNMENT!!


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                               Surgery- freeway pileup

A man wakes up in the hospital, bandaged from head to foot. The doctor
comes in and says, "Ah, I see you've regained consciousness. Now, you
probably won't remember, but you were in a pile-up on the freeway. You're
going to be okay, you'll walk again and everything, but something
happened. I'm trying to break this gently, but the fact is, your willy was
chopped off in the wreck and we were unable to find it."

The man groans, but the doctor goes on, "You've got $9000 in insurance
compensation coming and we have the technology now to build you a new
willy that will work as well as your old one did, and better in fact! But
the thing is, it doesn't come cheap. It's $1000 an inch."

The man perks up at this.

"So," the doctor says, "it's for you to decide how many inches you want.
But it's something you'd better discuss with your wife. I mean, if you had
a five inch one before, and you decide to go for a nine incher, she might
be a bit put out. But if you had a nine inch one before, and you decide
only to invest in a five incher this time, she might be disappointed. It's
important that she plays a role in this. Making decisions together will
help you through this tough time."

The man agrees to talk with his wife. The doctor comes back the next day.
"So,' says the doctor, 'have you spoken with your wife?"

"I have," says the man.

"And has she helped you in making the decision?" "Yes, she has," says the
man.

"And what is it?" asks the doctor

"We're getting granite countertops."


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                                    The Bacon Tree

Two Mexicans are stuck in the desert, wandering aimlessly and close to
death. They are close to just lying down and waiting for the inevitable,
when all of a sudden....... "Hey Pepe, do you smell what I smell. Ees bacon
I is sure of eet." "Si, Luis eet smells like bacon to meee." So, with
renewed strength, they struggle up the next sand dune, and there, in the
distance, is a tree loaded with bacon. There's raw bacon, dripping with
moisture, there's fried bacon, back bacon, double smoked bacon... every
imaginable kind of cured pig meat. "Pepe, Pepe, we is saved. "Eees a bacon
tree." "Luis, are you sure ees not a meerage? We ees in the Desert don't
forget." "Pepe when deed you ever hear of a meerage that smell like
bacon...
ees no meerage, ees a bacon tree". And with that... Luis Races towards the
tree. He gets to within 5 metres, Pepe following closely behind, when all
of a sudden, a machine gun opens up, and Luis is cut down in his tracks.
It is clear he is mortally wounded but, a true friend that he is, he
manages to warn Pepe with his dying breath. "Pepe... go back man, you was
right ees not a bacon tree." "Luis Luis mi amigo... what ees it? "Pepe...
ees not a bacon tree...

Ees....

Ees.....

Ees......

Ees

Eees a Ham Bush.


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A running soldier comes to a fork in the road and sees a nun standing
there.

Looking perturbed and out of breath he beseeches her, "Please, Sister, may
I hide under your skirts for a few minutes? I'll explain why later."

She's a bit puzzled, but seeing his desperation she agrees, and he quickly
slips under her habit.

In just a moment two Military Policemen come racing by and ask her,

"Sister, have you seen a soldier running by here?"

The nun tells them, "Yes, he went that way."

After the MP's disappear, the soldier crawls out from under her skirt and
explains, "I can't thank you enough Sister, but you see I don't want to o
to
Iraq."

The nun comforts him, "My son, I can fully understand your fear."

The soldier adds, "Sister, I hope you don't think me rude or impertinent,
ut
I think that you have a great pair of legs!"

The nun replies, "If you looked a little higher, you would have seen a
great pair of balls.... I don't want to go to Iraq either."


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                             Nine words women use...

1.) Fine : This is the word women use to end an argument when they are
right and you need to shut up.

2.) Five Minutes : If she is getting dressed , this means a half an hour.
Five minutes is only five minutes if you have just been given five more
minutes to watch the game before helping around the house.

3.) Nothing : This is the calm before the storm. This means something, and
you should be on your toes. Arguments that begin with nothing usually end
in fine..

4.) Go Ahead : This is a dare, not permission. Don't Do It!

5.) Loud Sigh : This is actually a word, but is a non-verbal statement
often misunderstood by men. A loud sigh means she thinks you are an idiot
and wonders why she is wasting her time standing here and arguing with you
about nothing. (Refer back to #3 for the meaning of nothing.)

6.) That's Okay : This is one of the most dangerous statements a woman can
make to a man. That's okay means she wants to think long and hard before
deciding how and when you will pay for your mistake.

7.) Thanks : A woman is thanking you, do not question, or faint. Just say
'You're welcome'.

8.) Whatever : Is a women's way of saying F*** YOU!

9.) Don't worry about it, I'll do it : Another dangerous statement, meaning
this is something that a woman has told a man to do several times, but is
now doing it herself. This will later result in a man asking 'What's
wrong?'
For the woman's response refer to #3.


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Some Arab states are getting American cartoons.

People in Dubai don't get the Flintstones, but Abu Dhabi do


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                                     The Popsickle

The only way to pull off a Sunday afternoon 'quickie' with their 8-year old
son in the apartment was to send him out on the balcony with a Popsicle and
tell him to report on all the neighbourhood activities. He began his
commentary as his parents put their plan into operation:

'There's a car being towed from the parking lot,' he shouted. 'An ambulance
just drove by!' Looks like the Andersons have company,' he called out.

'Matt's riding a new bike!' 'Looks like the Sanders are moving!' 'Jason is
on his skate board!'

After a few moments he announced, 'The Coopers are having s*x!!' Startled,
his mother and dad shot up in bed! Dad cautiously called out, 'How do you
know they are having s*x?' 'Jimmy Cooper is standing on his balcony with a
Popsicle


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An Eskimo is out for a drive one day when his car breaks down and he is
forced to call out the Alaskan AA.

The Eskimo stands in the howling wind and waits for the mechanic to arrive.
When the mechanic reaches the broken car, he sets to work, looking under
the bonnet until he appears to have located the problem.

He looks up at the Eskimo and says, "You've blown a seal, mate."

To which the Eskimo hastily replies, "No, I haven't. That's just frost on
my moustache."


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                         Eight Words with two meanings

1. THINGY (thing-ee) n. Female...... Any part under a car's hood.
Male....... The strap fastener on a woman's bra.

2. VULNERABLE (vul-ne-ra-bel) adj. Female.... Fully opening up one's self
emotionally to another. Male...... Playing cricket without a box.

3. COMMUNICATION (ko-myoo-ni-kay-shon) n. Female... The open sharing of
thoughts and feelings with one's partner. Male..... Leaving a note before
taking off on a fishing trip with the boys.

4. COMMITMENT (ko-mit-ment) n. Female.... A desire to get married and raise
a family. Male...... Trying not to hit on other women while out with this
one.

5. ENTERTAINMENT (en-ter-tayn-ment) n. Female.... A good movie, concert,
play or book. Male...... Anything that can be done while drinking beer.

6. FLATULENCE (flach-u-lens) n. Female.... An embarrassing by product of
indigestion. Male...... A source of entertainment, self-expression, male
bonding.

7 MAKING LOVE (may-king luv) n. Female...... The greatest expression of
intimacy a couple can achieve. Male....... Call it whatever you want, just
as long as we do it.

8. REMOTE CONTROL (ri-moht kon-trohl) n. Female.... A device for changing
from one TV channel to another. Male... .. A device for scanning through
all 375 channels every 5 minutes.


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He said . . . I don't know why you wear a bra; you've got nothing to put in
it.
She said . . . You wear pants don't you?


He said . . . Shall we try swapping positions tonight?
She said . . . That's a good idea - you stand by the ironing board while I
sit on the sofa and fart!

He said . . . What have you been doing with all the grocery money I gave
you?
She said . . . Turn sideways and look in the mirror!


He said . . . How many men does it take to change a roll of toilet paper?
She said . . . We don't know; it has never happened.

He said . . . Why is it difficult to find men who are sensitive, caring and
Good-looking?
She said . . . They already have boyfriends.

She said. . . What do you call a woman who knows where her husband is every
night?
He said . . . A widow.

He said . . . Why are married women heavier than single women?
She said . . . Single women come home, see what's in the fridge and go to
bed. Married women come home, see what's in bed and go to the fridge.


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Before we shut up shop here's a handy presentation about ATM scams from
Trina

ATM Skimmer - how to tell
 Click here


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Quote of the Week:


  Click here


                                                      Thomas Jefferson 1802


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[ End friday humour ]

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