Editor’s note: Following are three of my favorite e-mails from the last quarter. Some are obviously stereotypical, but don’t get mad, instead take them with a grain of salt and the humor in which they are intended.
Ghetto Spelling Bee
Tyreal came home from school disappointed. “I hate English, dem teachers are always changing stuff.”
Mother: “Tyreal, have you been using bad words and writing dirty notes again?”
Tyreal: “Naw, momma, I sware I didn’t. I used all of my spelling words in a sentence like the teacher say, but the teacher, she gave mean “F.”
HONOR ROLL – We was playing bid wiz on the stoop the other day and man, I was HONORROLL.
PLANET – Leroy got arrested ’cause he got him some seed to grow weed, and he PLANET in the backyard.
DISMAY – I went for a blood test, the doctor pulled out a needle and said DISMAY hurt a little.
OMEL ETTE – I should punch you for what you jes said but OMELETTE it go dis time.
STAIRWAY – Getting high is stupid. It makes you STAIRWAY into space.
MOBILE – I went to buy some food, I was short on cash, and my man said gimme one MOBILE.
DEFENSE – I saw this dude running from the cops, but he hopped DEFENSE and got away.
AFRO – I got so mad at my girl, AFRO a lamp at her.
AFTERMATH – I don’t feel like being at school today so AFTERMATH , I’m out.
LOCKET – I slam the door so hard, I LOCKET.
DOMINEERING – My girl’s birthday was yesterday, so I got her a DOMINEERING.
KENYA- I needed money for the subway, so I axe a stranger KENYAspare some change.
DERANGE – DERANGE is where da deer and da antelope play.
DATA – At my basketball game, I scored thirty points My coach say DATA boy.
BEWARE – I asked the man at the unemployment office, “Is dis BEWARE I can get a job?”
DIMENSION – I be tall, dark, handsome and not DIMENSION smart.
COATROOM – The judge said, “One more outburst, you’ll be thrown out de COATROOM.”
DECIDE – My boy fronting like he love his girl but eribody know he got a couple of chicks on DECIDE.
FASCINATE – Her dress got 10 buttons, but she so big she can’t FASCINATE.
Obituary printed in the London Times – Interesting and sadly true.
Today we mourn the passing of a beloved old friend, Common Sense, who has been with us for many years. No one knows for sure how old he was, since his birth records were long ago lost in bureaucratic red tape.
He will be remembered as having cultivated such valuable lessons as:
– Knowing when to come in out of the rain;
– Why the early bird gets the worm;
– Life isn’t always fair; and maybe it was my fault.
Common Sense lived by simple, sound financial policies (don’t spend more than you can earn) and reliable strategies (adults, not children, are in charge).
His health began to deteriorate rapidly when well intentioned but overbearing regulations were set in place. Reports of a 6-year-old boy charged with sexual harassment for kissing a classmate; teens suspended from school for using mouthwash after lunch; and a teacher fired for reprimanding an unruly student, only worsened his condition.
Common Sense lost ground when parents attacked teachers for doing the job that they themselves had failed to do in disciplining their unruly children. It declined even further when schools were required to get parental consent to administer sun lotion or an aspirin to a student; but could not inform parents when a student became pregnant and wanted to have an abortion.
Common Sense lost the will to live as the churches became businesses; and criminals received better treatment than their victims did. Common Sense took a beating when you couldn’t defend yourself from a burglar in your own home and the burglar could sue you for assault.
Common Sense finally gave up the will to live, after a woman failed to realize that a steaming cup of coffee was hot… She spilled a little in her lap, and was promptly awarded a huge settlement. Common Sense was preceded in death, by his parents, Truth and Trust, by his wife, Discretion, by his daughter, Responsibility, and by his son, Reason.
He is survived by his four stepbrothers: I Know My Rights, I Want It Now, Someone Else Is To Blame, and I’m A Victim.
Not many attended his funeral because so few realized he was gone. If you still remember him, pass this on. If not, join the majority and do nothing.
Black and White
Black and White (Under age 40? You won’t understand.) You could hardly see for all the snow, Spread the rabbit ears as far as they go.
Pull a chair up to the TV set, ‘Good Night, David. Good Night, Chet.’
My Mom used to cut chicken, chop eggs and spread mayo on the same cutting board with the same knife and no bleach, but we didn’t seem to get food poisoning.
My Mom used to defrost hamburger on the counter and I used to eat it raw sometimes, too.
Our school sandwiches were wrapped in wax paper in a brown paper bag, not in ice pack coolers, but I can’t remember getting e-coli.
Almost all of us would have rather gone swimming in the lake instead of a pristine pool (talk about boring), no beach closures then.
The term cell phone would have conjured up a phone in a jail cell, and a pager was the school PA system.
We all took gym, not PE…and risked permanent injury with a pair of high top Ked’s (only worn in gym) instead of having cross-training athletic shoes with air cushion soles and built in light reflectors. I can’t recall any injuries but they must have happened because they tell us how much safer we are now.
Flunking gym was not an option… Even for stupid kids! I guess PE must be much harder than gym.
Speaking of school, we all said prayers and sang the national anthem, and staying in detention after school caught all sorts of negative attention. We must have had horribly damaged psyches.
What an archaic health system we had then. Remember school nurses? Ours wore a hat and everything.
I thought that I was supposed to accomplish something before I was allowed to be proud of myself.
I just can’t recall how bored we were without computers, Play Station, Nintendo, X-box or 270 digital TV cable stations. Oh yeah… And where was the Benadryl and sterilization kit when I got that bee sting? I could have been killed!
We played ‘king of the hill’ on piles of gravel left on vacant construction sites, and when we got hurt, Mom pulled out the 48-cent bottle of mercurochrome (kids liked it better because it didn’t sting like iodine did) and then we got our butt spanked. Now it’s a trip to the emergency room, followed by a 10-day dose of a $49 bottle of antibiotics, and then Mom calls the attorney to sue the contractor for leaving a horribly vicious pile of gravel where it was such a threat.
We didn’t act up at the neighbor’s house either; because if we did we got our butt spanked there and then we got our butt spanked again when we got home.
I recall Donny Reynolds from next door coming over and doing his tricks on the front stoop, just before he fell off. Little did his Mom know that she could have owned our house. Instead, she picked him up and swatted him for being such a goof.
To top it off, not a single person I knew had ever been told that they were from a dysfunctional family. How could we possibly have known that? We needed to get into group therapy and anger management classes. We were obviously so duped by so many societal ills, that we didn’t even notice that the entire country wasn’t taking Prozac! How did we ever survive?
November 18, 2015 //
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