Monday, April 23, 2018
We're easing into the week with an Earwigs post because multiple sources in the media have declared that today, April 23, the world will come to an end - so we thought "why bother?"
The actual cause of Earth's destruction today isn't quite settled science. Some are saying that a phantom planet which usually hides coyly behind the sun will smash into us today, while others have declared that they've found previously unfathomed hints in the Bible that today will be the beginning of Armageddon. In either case, you'll surely be able to catch it all on Facebook Live.
It's particularly ironic that our planet is going kaput today because we're no longer incapacitated by acute diverticulitis. We're actually much improved, and pounced on a dab of scrambled eggs and white toast today in much the same way that the bird above would hurl itself at a worm if he ever sees one.
Eggs and toast might not sound like deluxe dining, but after a week of dining on thin broth, Werther's originals, teriyaki sauce, and gummi worms it felt like a feast! And this is as good a place as any to thank everyone for their well wishes and advice over the past week - all were (and are!) very much appreciated.
And no, we still can't drink liquor. So we wish the news media would make a greater effort to meet us halfway by not reporting so many things that would normally drive us to drink.
Further bulletins as warranted, and see you in the comments section! (And if anyone has previously missed it, just click on the title above each day's cartoon - like "Kiwi's Playhouse" today - and you'll be whisked away to the comments section where wisdom and hilarity cavort in equal measures!)
Friday, April 20, 2018
Sure, there are a lot of important stories in the news lately - but can any story possibly be as important as saving our entire planet?! Excluding, apparently, any story about a top-heavy porn star or the nightmarish discovery of 8000 domestic hideouts for racist baristas.
But saving the world is right up there, which is why it's so important to take part in your local Earth Day activities this Sunday! Whether it's shutting off the electricity to your home or iron lung, not flushing the family toilet all day, eschewing burgers made from flatulent cows, or simply holding your breath to avoid exhaling poisonous carbon dioxide - every little bit helps.
The time for skepticism about our growing environmental catastrophe has passed, assuming that "skepticism" means "asking for scientific data which is at least marginally plausible." Consensus science tells us that Mother Nature, ruffled and ravaged, deserves to be at the forefront of the #MeToo movement - and not just because of that night she can't quite remember with Bill Cosby.
This Earth Day, don't be an energy-wasting planet-destroying wastrel like Leonardo DiCaprio or Al Gore. Be like this guy...
FROM THE VAULT
A hand-chosen selection of environmentally conscious cartoons from our past...
And with Starbucks in the news, let's revisit their monumentally unsuccessful and quickly aborted "Let's Talk About Race" campaign from several years ago! Apparently having access to free coffee isn't enough to help slow learners...
Wednesday, April 18, 2018
Let us be honest up front: today's post is all about venting and complaining. Not about the news, which is about as screwed up as usual, but rather some more personal issues. Like...
• ACUTE DIVERTICULITIS
The verdict is in about our abdominal pain. It's an attack of acute diverticulitis which will take some time to resolve. The good news is that, not so long ago, the standard treatment for diverticulitis was to slice you open and start pulling out organs.
Now, we can be treated with antibiotics - but there's a catch: one of the antibiotics needs to be taken with food so it won't burn a hole through your stomach the way the Alien's molecular-acid blood burned through deck plates. BUT...the doctor has ordered "no food" for up to two weeks - just clear liquids.
This wouldn't necessarily be unlivable were it not for the fact that a second antibiotic will give you violent projectile vomiting if you have so much as a sip of alcohol. So this is going to be a long friggin' two weeks.
• INSURANCE SUCKS, PART ONE
Remember that hail storm we mentioned last week? We've already had one roofer inspect the damage and say (surprise!) we need a new roof. But here's the rub: we last replaced our roof in 2003, and we got the best (and most expensive) materials available. For that reason, our sturdy roof has survived when all of our thriftier neighbors have gotten new roofs over the years - some multiple times - from their homeowners insurance.
But OUR insurance had a little surprise for us: "If your roof is older than 10 years, we triple your deductible." In this case, to around $9,000. So will the insurance pay anything above that? Maybe yes, maybe no - because besides sticking us with that insane deductible, they also plan to depreciate the roof because of it's age. So the likelihood is that the insurance we religiously pay for won't cover doodly squat. Hell, we may owe them money just for making their phone ring.
• INSURANCE SUCKS, PART TWO
As if we weren't already in a rotten mood (and we are!), we got a letter today in which Medicare essentially told us to attempt conjugal relations with a rolling donut regarding a recent bill.
We won't get into medical details, but this involves an expensive test (as in multiple thousands of dollars) which was pretty damn important. But Medicare has decided the test was neither necessary or reasonable and won't pay a dime. "But don't worry," they assure us, "since the fault belongs with your doctor who ordered this unreasonable, unnecessary test, we'll force them to pay the whole bill."
Let's think this through: a doctor (an excellent doctor with a prestigious practice) is essentially going to be penalized for ordering a very important and entirely necessary test. So what do you think will happen the next time the doctor thinks someone needs that test? Right - the test won't be ordered and the patient will suffer the potentially catastrophic consequences.
It's a win-win-win for the government: they don't pay off on the Medicare promises they've made, they discourage doctors from even ordering tests and, in the long run, more people die early and won't be collecting their government benefits. Genius!
• THEY GO IN THREES
In the past few days we lost Art Bell, the master of creepy conspiracy late night radio, R. Lee Ermey, who burned his way into our national consciousness with his role of "The Gunny" in the film "Full Metal Jacket" and, closest to our heart, actor/magician/con-man Harry Anderson.
In that same period of time, we're unaware of any complete a**holes dying. So what's the deal, Death?!
We could continue ranting about these and other matters, but it's time for us to eat our delicious sugar-free jello and take that stomach-destroying pill.
(Update: After writing the above, we learned of the passing of former first lady Barbara Bush. Her strength and classiness will be missed.)