The best goofy but true stories from 2011

December 14, 2011

As I said recently in a post which began a countdown to tomorrow’s final entry in this blog, one of the things I have enjoyed most is presenting stories that are goofy but true.

Sure, it’s fun to make up funny stuff and riff on news photos, but real life often finds a way to top me.

Here are my seven favorite TRUE stories featured in my blog this year.

7. Come over to my yard for a fling?

We’ve had fun with an epidemic of consumer product recalls this year, but I still break out laughing over this one, a hammock that was recalled because its wooden stand may break ““if left outdoors.”

6. Wouldn’t hanging them be more humane?

What can I say? A prison program designed to rehabilitate prisoners by teaching them to play the bagpipes.

5. What year is it again?

An item in which we learned that in Peru, shops, banks and buses don’t allow blind people to enter with their guide dogs. Really.

4. I hope you’re proud of yourself

We met a lawyer who has appealed his client’s conviction of raping and impregnating a 15-year-old girl on the grounds that a dog was used to comfort her during her testimony at trial.

3. Creepy gets a whole lot creepier?

We all remember this one, about a city in Turkey that has equipped the local morgue with the latest motion detector gadgetry in case any of the bodies stored there have been declared dead by mistake.

2. Stilettos making a comeback?

The year saw more than its fair share of bizarre legislation passed, but first prize probably goes to the Maine lawmakers who approved legalizing switchblade knives, but only for people with one arm.

1. Maybe the worst idea EVER?

Yeah, still my favorite. A plan to have prison inmates respond to emergencies, including residential fires, to work alongside “traditional” firefighters. What could possibly go wrong?

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Top: Inmates play bagpipes as part of their routine training inside Kotbhalwal central jail in Jammu May 20, 2011. REUTERS/Mukesh Gupta

Jane Cosar and her guide dog walk in front of the conductor of a bus who refused to let her board the bus in Lima September 29, 2011. REUTERS/Mariana Bazo

Right: Russian President Vladimir Putin and U.S. President George W. Bush walk past a hammock as they exit their summit meeting and head to a joint news availability at the Bush family home on Walker’s Point in Kennebunkport, Maine, July 2, 2007. REUTERS/Jim Bourg

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“As I said recently in a post which began a countdown to tomorrow’s final entry in this blog”…

I’m still not over that.

As regards the list, I recall (excuse the pun) most of these articles and it’s absolutely true – most of the times it’s these “truth stranger than fiction” stories that cracked me up the most whenever reading this blog. More often than not, I end up sharing the news with my co-workers and they too end up enjoying the fruits of your labour, Mr. B.

Again, hats off for your super work.

Posted by Malteser | Report as abusive

I’m going to miss typing “oddl” in my URL search box every morning. I’ve been saving the following for today. This is for you, Bob, and all the rest of us. I’m sure Clement C. Moore would understand.

‘Twas the night before Blog Death, when all through the bar,
Not a creature was stirring, not even Lamar;

The Enter keys were prepped by the laptop with care,
In hopes that our Blog Guy soon would be there;

The posters were restless, with a keen sense of dread,
While visions of oblivion danced in their head;

And Hulga in her ‘kerchief, and Shra in her shoes,
Had just settled down for a long winter’s snooze,

When out on the net there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from the barstool to see what was the matter.

Away to the PC I drifted like fog,
Logged into the web page and linked to the blog.

The slight curve of breast on strangely-clad models within
Gave impetus for the barrage of comments to begin,

When, what to my wondering eyes should foster,
But an oddly enough blog and many a poster,

With a retiring blogger filled with pizzazz,
I knew in a moment it must be our Blaz.

More rapid than piranhas on fresh meat they came,
And he chortled, and snorted, and called them by name;

“Now, Georgia! now, onedoor! now, Dave_not_dave and 69Spin!
On, Crowgirl! On, Ladylala! on, Doctordoll and Moonshine!

then, justCAM (and sis’), then uncarastus, and AllThatJazz!
And others, too, all fans of the Baz!

From Bob’s desk to west Krasnoyarsk and to shores of the Maines,
Dang it! I almost forgot jclimacus081 and iflydaplanes!”

As the Williams of Sonoma catalog has gifts for us all,
When displayed on this blog, they’re not found at the mall.

So into the comment block the posters did fly,
With rapid fingers typing and a gimlet eye.

And then, in that museum of donuts in space
The selection and showing of each goofy face.

As I clicked in my comment, and was turning around,
Down the drainspout Mister Blog Guy came with a bound.

He was dressed all in khaki, sweats, and dark sunglasses, I think,
His clothes were all smudged with some strong ‘lectronic ink;

A bundle of barbs he had flung on his back,
With sarcasm, puns, and observations on crack.

His wit — how it dazzled! his wisdom, be wary!
Trés chic his supposes, but not from his Blackberry!

No troll ever ventured on his sacred soil,
And those that did were burned in Monty Python oil;

He scoured the photographic log to set the humor,
Friend of the Royals? Nah! That was just a rumor;

He had content that allowed a musical parody,
Politicos, rebels, cute animals, and things quirky of rarity.

He was comic and glib, a right apropos elf,
And I laughed when I read him, in spite of myself;

A return e-mail and a twist of the truth,
Soon let me know I had something really forsooth;

He said I’m closing up the blog, I’m through with snark.
I asked where shall I comment? Did we jump the shark?

He reassured me I had nothing to fear.
Like Obi-Wan to Luke, he’d always be here.

He sprang to his Basler Turbo Six-Seven, and gave me the up thumb,
Cheer up my friends, it’s been a great five-year run.

And I heard him exclaim, ere he shut down the site,
“Happy Blogging to all, and to all a good-night.”

Exit Stage-Right.

Posted by FriscoJohn | Report as abusive

C’mon BG, one more fantasy photo. Send Lamar to Tehran with Donald Trump to report on the whole spy plane incident – you know, one drone reporting on another?

Posted by Dave_not_dave | Report as abusive

Oh my, Frisco…I am so speechless. My hats are all off to you…can’t top that, so I won’t try. I will just save this blog to re-read when the withdrawal symptoms start.

Posted by Moonshine | Report as abusive

@FriscoJohn: Brilliant!

Posted by 69Spinster | Report as abusive

Right, Dave! Maybe The Trumpster could “talk” to good ol’ Ahmadinejad about returning that drone…you know, one bad hairdo to another.

Posted by Moonshine | Report as abusive

Frisco, I’m going to miss those riffs of yours, outstanding performance sir

I’d forgotten the bagpipers… I wonder is Prince Charlie the band leader?

Hey BG, I say we fire up the BT-69 one last time, load her up with chewy doggie toys and fly to Peru. “Pilot to bombadier, we’re over the drop zone now!”

Posted by jclimacus081 | Report as abusive

When I re-read these seven posts, i was particularly tickled by these two lines:

Blog Guy, I read somewhere that you’re an authority on prisoner rehabilitation programs.
Well, yes, but only the really wacky ones that make no sense at all to me.

That’s a great version of being an authority on something, Blog Guy.

Posted by 69Spinster | Report as abusive

Frisco, that was cap-tastic! :)

Posted by Shra | Report as abusive

I, too, send kudos to Frisco for outdoing Moore and immortalizing Basler.

Oddly has occupied the lead spot on my home page–can’t imagine anything else in its place.

Posted by slick9 | Report as abusive

I keep telling George the Crab that he is probably dreaming of ever seeing a crab on here, but please, for the sake of inner family peace, because George goes into months long sulks, could you just maybe post at least one last picture of a crab/crabs, tomorrow?

Else it is going to be a long winter, indeed!

Posted by uncarastus | Report as abusive

Great Work FriscoJohn!
My own humble tribute:
O Bob Basler
This blog’s our native land
True comedy, in all thy words command
With glowing hearts we see thee write
This blog so learning-free
From far and wide
O Bob Basler, we snort and laugh with thee
You kept this blog glorious and free
O Bob Basler we snort and laugh with thee
O Bob Basler, how we shall miss thee.

Posted by Nosmo_King | Report as abusive

Sheer genius, Frisco. My Basler Airlines cap, which JustCam thoughtfully sent me recently, is off to you…

Posted by rcbasler | Report as abusive

@Nosmo: Let’s raise the Oddly Enough flag to your song, and see if anyone salutes. I’m guessing we all will. I am first to do so. Excellent riff, @Nosmo.

Posted by 69Spinster | Report as abusive

Here! Here! and Huzzah, too!

Posted by FriscoJohn | Report as abusive

@Frisco: Tell me you don’t have a job. How else do you have time and energy to write such splendid stuff? Loved it.
@Nosmo: You’ve done our country proud. Canada salutes Mr. B. Thanks.

Posted by ladylala | Report as abusive


Posted by CrowGirl | Report as abusive

@Frisco and Nosmo, excellent, just excellent! :)

@ladylala, do you think even after the blog ends I can still hang out on your lawn?

And what is this about tomorrow being the final day? I thought Friday was supposed to be it!

Posted by iflydaplanes | Report as abusive

@Frisco … thanks for the fantastic tribute to the best humor blog on the Internet! It brought tears to my sister’s eyes. :-)

Bob … Would you favor your loyal fans with a pic of you with your Basler Airlines cap?

“The day the doughnuts died”

(Please forgive me, Don McLean)

Posted by justCAM | Report as abusive

Imagine there’s no blog end
It’s easy if you try
No hell of no doughnuts
Above us only a BT-69 flown by ifly
Imagine all the people commenting every day

Imagine there’s no end to Lamar
It isn’t hard to do
Nothing to stop LadyLala’s talk of Ma
And no end to goofiness too
Imagine all the people living life with laughs

You, you may say
I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one
I hope some day you’ll join us
And the commenters’ comments won’t be done

Imagine no end to SHOOOOOOES
I wonder if you can
No need to stop riffing on Cole Porter
Or Monty Python or Ronald’s spam
Imagine all the commenters sharing all the doughnuts

You, you may say
I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one
I hope some day you’ll comment with us
And the Oddly Enough blog will revive the fun

Posted by 69Spinster | Report as abusive

@Spin: all so good!!

Posted by jclimacus081 | Report as abusive

@ifly: Of course you may hang out on my lawn. Just so long as you boys keep the noise down and don’t leave your empties and butts all over, ok?

Posted by ladylala | Report as abusive

You are the best
and deserve to rest
I know that I
will miss you.

It didn’t take long
for you to meke me stong
and forget the sad times
that I went through.

Humor and grace in a reporting ace.

Posted by Onedoor | Report as abusive

I am a queit little mouse that has been following this blog for almost 2 years from all the way around the world. It has been such fun to get hold of all the odd things that I cannot imagine happening anywhere. My salutes to BG and everyone contributing in one way or another to make the world a more interesting place.

Posted by Shelley-Zhang | Report as abusive

Dammit. You guys are gonna get me all misty-eyed. Not really looking forward to today’s post, but anticipating a good one.

Posted by Dave_not_dave | Report as abusive

Wow, my huzzah! and hats off to Frisco and Spin, great work!!

Posted by Malteser | Report as abusive

@ladylala: Fortunately I DO have a job. But the forecast for next year is dim. If you know of any place that needs a parodist, let me know. This blog has given me an opportunity to use much more material, like adjectives and adverbs…

Posted by FriscoJohn | Report as abusive

Now where am I going to go to decompress my crowded mind? WHERE???

Posted by uncarastus | Report as abusive