cutting remarks

Fatty, fatty, two-by-four,
Can’t get through the bathroom door.
Childhood taunt


I used that taunt more than once in my childhood. That is perhaps forgiveable. But well into adult life I made a cruel joke about a co-worker who had a wide and ample backside. “What’s the sound of [co-worker’s name] getting out of a bucket seat?” [Pause, then insert finger into mouth and make a popping noise pulling it out.] Shame on me.


This post, then, is an oblique attempt at atonement. The illustration is a visual pun: a pair of scissors has been busy cutting remarks. The remarks are all fool-related. “There’s no fool like an old fool” is folk wisdom. “Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.” is, according to STAR TREK’s Pavel Chekov, a Russian saying. “They are fools, who eat fugu. But those who do not eat fugu are also fools.” comes from Japan, and refers to a sushi of blowfish that, improperly prepared, will kill whosoever eats it.

The acrostic suffers from the need to put too much content into too few lines. Here are the words, un-acrosticized for better clarity:

cruelty verbalized can be a cancer
ugliness audible: dissing of grace
tap-dance on feelings then ho-hum the answer
sic transit gloria in mists of mace
whether or not we’ll exist to thank God
is anyone’s guess but i don’t like the odds


From here on in, I rag nobody.
Henry Wiggen in Mark Harris’s Bang the Drum Slowly



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