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Three dots, six cartons of milk…

Posted July 15, 2011, at 9:04 p.m.

With energy-draining sultry mid-July weather promised by the weatherman, it seems the ideal spot for a casual three-dot column. Loyal readers know the drill: A bunch of unrelated items strung together with the three dots of ellipsis to warn of a sudden leap from one topic to another — four dots, I suppose some might argue, when the change is signaled at the end of a sentence and the final punctuation dot is actually a period. No continuity of narrative is intended, no heavy lifting on the reader’s part is required. …

Random observations. …

I am no fashion expert, but when it comes to clashing colors in clothing I know a mismatch when I see one. And I see plenty of them on television these days, most involving loud neckties sported by shout-show hosts and their talking-head guests.

The operating rule of thumb, color-combination-wise, seems to be that there is no rule of thumb — unless it’s that anything goes and the more garish the effect, the better. The result can be something that an Anah Temple Shrine clown might shy from, for fear it could bring sartorial discredit upon the clown profession.

Some combinations probably should be declared illegal, or at the very least banned from the public airwaves while young children might be watching. Hideous blaze orange necktie over green and white checked shirt under a blue blazer. Toxic purple tie adorned with flaming red curlicues worn with brown shirt and shiny black suit. Polka dots fighting bold stripes. Plaids at war with multi-color paisleys. That sort of thing, until you want to dial 911 and sic the fashion police on the perpetrators.

Outlandish as this new-wave style may be, though, it has more going for it than organized baseball’s pajama-bottoms fashion that has been all the rage for quite some time. The “look”’ features grown men cavorting on the playing field with several inches of trousers fabric underfoot, lending new appreciation for that old vaudeville lament about Sam having made the pants too long.

Couple the tripping-over-the-pants thing with a cap pulled down over ears and slightly askew, add the obligatory necklace, throw in the tattoos and earrings and the spitting and scratching, and the cumulative effect on the senses of innocent bystanders can be quite something…

Health care woes …

A “Close to Home” cartoon by John McPherson, clipped from a publication during the perennial health care debate years ago, shows a doctor and nurse standing over a guy — bandaged from head to toe like some Egyptian mummy — lying in a hospital bed.

“Your insurance company is refusing to pay your medical bills, due to a pre-existing condition. It claims you were already an idiot before you decided to Rollerblade down the interstate,” the doctor is telling his patient. …

Royal pains …

From the totally useless trivia in my health care clippings-stash comes an unattributed blurb describing the treatment that physicians attending King Charles II of England performed when His Royal Highness took sick in 1685.

First, they drew a pint of blood. Then they poured antimony (a metallic chemical element) and sulfate of zinc down his throat to make him upchuck, gave him an enema, shaved his head and singed his scalp with red hot irons, dabbed his face and feet with pigeon droppings, covered him with hot plasters, fed him a combination of pearls dissolved in ammonia and powder from a human skull, administered more enemas, filled his nose with sneezing powder, dosed him with purgatives, laxatives, sedatives, heart tonics and antidotes for poison. Then, just to be on the safe side, they gave him another enema and drew another 12 ounces of blood.

On the fifth day of his treatment, the king died. But not before heaving a sigh of relief at the prospect, one would suppose…

Male logic…

A joke making the rounds on the Internet probably gets a bigger laugh from literal-minded males than from perplexed females. Wife to husband: “Honey, would you please go to the store and get a carton of milk, and if they have eggs, get six?” Husband departs, returning shortly thereafter with six cartons of milk.

“Why on earth did you buy six cartons of milk?” asks the wife.

“They had eggs,” the husband replies.

BDN columnist Kent Ward lives in Limestone. His email address is maineolddawg@gmail.com.

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