A Variation On “The Dog Ate My Homework”

When Tahlequah, Okla., officers responded to a report of a minivan crashed into a ditch, they found 65-year-old William McDonald in the driver’s seat and 42-year-old Steven Schofield ridin’ shotgun. There was also a dog in the van, sorta minding his own business. The van was stuck and they weren’t going anywhere, which officers considered a good thing because both men appeared to be pretty drunk. The humans claimed they had simply pulled over because they were “tired.” But when the cops tried to pin down who was driving the van when this “pull over and crash” episode occurred, a couple of small, dim lights began flashing in the pair’s heads. They realized whoever copped out to driving might be in a lot more trouble than being stuck in a ditch. Then they had a flash of brilliance.

“The dog was driving!” they said, apparently pretty pleased with themselves. I wish we had the rest of the conversation, like their explanation of how talented Ol’ Blue is; how he was drivin’ a truck on the farm back when he was just a pup, that sort of thing.

Even if officers couldn’t prove either of the men were driving, they were still hammered enough to qualify for “drunk in public,” so they went to the tank anyway. Ol’ Blue also went behind bars — at the Tahlequah animal shelter. He’ll be incarcerated until those treasonous humans who tried to finger him for DUI get outta jail. He might forgive them, but only after a couple of beers.

He Would’ve Paid $100 To Get Out

It was kind of an act of mercy that police in Lawton, Okla., didn’t release the name of a man who was rescued from the underground drain system — they no doubt thought he had enough to live down. You see, the poor guy accidentally dropped a $20 bill down through a grate over a storm drain.

Getting in apparently wasn’t that tough, but when he turned around and tried to find his way out, he couldn’t. The drain system has been described as “a maze,” and this guy would agree. Darkness fell and he wandered some more, calling out for help and looking for any source of light. Finally, some pedestrians heard his cries and called for assistance. He spent two days down in the pipes and never found his lost $20.

Violating The First Rule Of Burglary

Burglary doesn’t have many formal rules, but the prime rule is: “Get in, get it all and get out!” The corollary is: “If you didn’t get it all, don’t go back!” We’re guessing 42-year-old Carlos Ruiz missed that class.

Carlos got away clean after burgling a home in Haddon Township, N.J., hauling out an array of valuables including a nice sound system. He should’ve been content with that. Oh, you missed swipin’ the remote control? Cough up $9.99 for a replacement! Nope, Carlos went back for the remote only a half-hour later. He was caught and arrested at the scene.

How ’Bout A Giant Peacock On A Bicycle?

Stupid wastes of millions of dollars of our tax money are so routine it may be a waste of time to report on them, but here are a few we just couldn’t pass up:

The State Department has found the perfect objets d’art to decorate the grass-patch in front of our embassy in Islamabad, Pakistan. It’s a life-size bright white fiberglass camel staring at the eye of a big needle. It’s not even an original; it’s a copy of a design done by artist John Baldessari for the corporate headquarters of a winery in Napa Valley, Calif. We’re assured this is a “discount price” too. Boy, that takes the sting right outta the price tag, doesn’t it?

The average annual income for a head-of-household in Pakistan is about $1,250. The white camel mesmerized by a needle cost us $400,000. I guess the message we’re trying to send Pakistanis is, “We’re stupid and have way too much money.”

Also on your tab via the State Department is a “sculpture” consisting of a large granite block constructed of — smaller granite blocks. It says something about “unity,” we think. Done by you and your brother-in-law Arnie, it would cost about three grand. Done by an artiste, it costs a cool million bucks. On the other hand, we got a great bargain on a $15,000 grant to another artist to build a scale-model house out of cardboard — and then burn it to ashes. That’s “expressionist performance art.” It used to be called arson.

We Think He Should Try Another Activity

Riding zip lines is a growing fad, very popular in resorts, and considered more thrilling than more common activities like riding monster roller coasters or parasailing behind a speedboat. You’ve seen zip lines, right?

You start from a high tower, hold on to a loop over a descending line, leap off and go zippin’ down the line really, really fast, gaining speed with every foot of descent, but coming to a nice, safe stop at ground level. The most exciting ones are suspended over canyons or rivers, or run from a photogenic peak down to a flat area. The key to a survivable zip line ride is the brake.

Seemingly enchanted with the idea, a 45-year-old fella living near Kelso, Wash., built his own zip line setup. He apparently only got two things wrong: First, the brake, which didn’t brake, and second, he failed to calculate how much the zip line would bow with his weight on it. You don’t want objects like, say, trees to be in your flight pattern when you’re coming in with the speed of a Major League fastball about 20 feet from the ground.

Personnel from four emergency response agencies tended to his traumatic head, legs, arms and internal injuries, and he was flown to an area hospital. He survived.

Just a suggestion, pal: If you take up base jumping next, don’t use a homemade parachute.

Don’t You Feel Great About Paying Taxes?

In his latest report about employee bonuses, called “high-performance prizes,” the Inspector General for tax administration of the U.S. Treasury noted $2.8 million in bonuses had been given to employees with “disciplinary problems.” Among those getting nice prizes were about 1,150 federal employees who owe approximately $1 million in delinquent back taxes.

The IG did recognize paying big bonuses to problem employees who are also stickin’ it to the rest of us for their unpaid bills might “appear to be a conflict” and reflect poorly on the “integrity” of the department. Gee, ya think it might?

But … But It Was A Twix!

In Iowa, an administrative law judge fine-tuned his decision on damages to a vending machine. He ruled it could be somewhat reasonable to inflict a minimal amount of damage in persuading a vending machine to give up the treat for which it has already taken your money. But what if said treat is still in the “hang-fire” position in the machine, refusing to release it?

The judge said it isn’t reasonable to go and get your employer’s forklift, bring it back to the snack area, lift the vending machine two feet in the air and then drop it onto the concrete deck. That, he felt, was a tad excessive. Thus, poor Twix-lover Robert McKevitt’s termination from his job was upheld, and he was deemed not entitled to worker compensation.
By Commander Gilmore

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