The Thing From Bloggy Swamp

"Music is real--the rest is scenery." Fats Waller

Con Chapman

Con Chapman
Boston, Massachusetts, US of A
September 28
. . . is the author of over fifty books--some with paper!--available on and elsewhere.


Editor’s Pick
FEBRUARY 17, 2011 4:53PM

Buoyed by Jeopardy Win, Watson Will Try "Bachelor"

CULVER CITY, Cal.  Fresh off his victory over two human champion on "Jeopardy," IBM computer "Watson" says he will try his hand at a TV show where less analytical skills are required: the ABC hit "The Bachelor."

"It isn't just his memory that's big, ladies."

"I am new overlord of

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LOS ANGELES.  It’s been five years since the National Basketball Association adopted its “business casual” dress code in an effort to combat the league’s “gangsta” image, personified by a 2004 brawl between the Detroit Pistons and the Indiana Pacers that… Read full post »

FEBRUARY 16, 2011 9:23PM

Last Rites

Ten years have passed since my father died,
  and six since my mother, four years later, 
  was laid down by his side,


  lowered into the ground as we three sat there--
  two crying, the other stoical, prepared by philosophy--
  in the funeral parlor’s f

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DOWNER'S GROVE, Il.  It's Saturday night in this suburb of Chicago, and Dan Gruenberg is regaling friends with a tale of an incident at his office that has them poised for the punch line.  "So the office manager comes in wearing an all-black outfit and sees Tina from accounting at

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BROOKLYN, New York. Carmen Scarpino, an innovative smart aleck who is credited with many of America's most treasured comebacks, one-liners and wise cracks, died of lung cancer at the Sons of Italy Convalescent Home here yesterday. He was 78.

Potential target of Scarpino's wit.

Scarpino ca

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Editor’s Pick
FEBRUARY 14, 2011 8:11AM

TV Execs: Jeopardy Computer is a Nerd, Too

CULVER CITY, Ca.  Sony TV executives sought to calm widespread fears on the eve of the matchup between "Watson," an IBM computer, and two human contestants on tonight's historic Jeopardy episode, saying humans have nothing to fear from a victory by machine over man. 

" . . . and in

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The Holy Trinity of bebop in the popular theology of jazz consists of Charlie Parker on alto sax, Dizzy Gillespie on trumpet and Thelonious Monk on piano, but jazz is a pagan art form and so admits of polytheism.  Earl Rudolph "Bud" Powell is an alternate deity on the piano,

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CAIRO.  While jubilant crowds filled the streets here following the resignation of President Hosni Mubarak after thirty years of iron-fisted rule, the former air force commander began the mundane steps required to turn over power.

"Thirty years of heavy-handed rule, I should at leas

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I'm please to announced that my full-length play The Hat Trick will soon be appearing at a theatre near you.  If you live in western Vermont or the Greater Boston Standard Metropolitan Statistical Area.

The Hat Trick:  Sorta like this.

For a small-time playwright such as myself, one

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FEBRUARY 10, 2011 8:24PM

Valentine for a Homely Couple

Carl’s wife sits shotgun in his truck
Her doughy face baked whitish red
He gets out and climbs the semi–
Smiling, he asks “How’s it going?”
We just grunt and nod our heads
at the auger hole, and how it’s stuck.

“Better you than me, boys,” he sa

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FEBRUARY 10, 2011 1:33PM

Shrink Mag Relents, Will Add Nude Pix

NEW YORK.  The Journal of Psychoanalytical Studies, the leading academic publication dedicated to the thought of Sigmund Freud and his intellectual descendants, says it will give in to economic pressures next month and add nude pictures of leading female practitioners and patients to the magazi

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BOCA RATON, Florida.  The flames of democracy that have brought the downfall of dictators in Egypt and Tunis swept across America yesterday as Sy Sperling, President of the Hair Club for Men, promised to resign amid growing protests.

Sy Sperling, President-for-Life of Hair

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LAS VEGAS, Nev.  This desert city has been hit hard by a collapse in the residential real estate market, but a visitor has a hard time finding a frown anywhere in town this week.  "It's a glorious thing," says Rabbi David Silberstein of Temple Or-Atid in Sharon, Mass., enjoying a litt

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Editor’s Pick
FEBRUARY 9, 2011 9:25AM

Fun With Death at the National Funeral Directors Convention

Undertakers convened in Boston to focus on changes and "fun" in their profession.  "When funerals and death aren't fun anymore," said one, "I'll get out of the business."


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FEBRUARY 8, 2011 12:11PM

Jihad Eye for the Infidel Guy

The owner of a Buffalo, New York, TV station founded to counter negative stereotypes of Muslims was convicted of beheading his wife in the studio when she filed for divorce.

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WASHINGTON, D.C.  Demographers poring over data from the 2010 census have reached preliminary conclusions about the changing face of America, which as expected show a nation that is increasingly diversified and on the move to the south and west.

"Somebody's home--I can he

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Editor’s Pick
FEBRUARY 7, 2011 8:38AM

FCC to Regulate Flag Lapel Pins

WASHINGTON, D.C.  The Federal Communications Commission, the agency that regulates the nation's television broadcast spectrum, will today issue rules regulating the size, weight and content of flag lapel pins, the fashion accessory adopted by politicians, news anchors and sportscasters to demon

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FEBRUARY 6, 2011 10:41AM

All the Charisma of a Shark

The great white shark is "one of the more charismatic, popular sharks in the world.” Greg Skomal, Senior Biologist, Massachusetts Division of Marine Fisheries. 


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Over the next two days, you will be bombarded by features in women's magazines and on daytime talk shows on the theme of "Impress Your Man With Your Super Bowl Knowledge!"  I saw one just the other day featuring a bottle-blonde--is "bimbo" too strong a word for the internet?--tossing a

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Editor’s Pick
FEBRUARY 3, 2011 2:18PM

Valentine Gift Ideas for the Totally Clueless

Surveys show that men will give women more than 36 million boxes of chocolate and 189 million roses on Valentine's Day, making lemmings look like hip, Bohemian non-conformists. 

Remarkably similar-looking non-conformists.

How do you make your gift stand out over all the other prese

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Imagine, if you will, the heartland of America--the Mississippi River Valley--as a woman sprawled out on a bed.  Her brain is in Chicago--hold the Mayor Daley jokes--and looks eastward to New York.  Her arms are flung out as if she is sated, to the Northwest on the left and to th

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WASHINGTON, D.C.  With the decision yesterday by a Virginia federal judge striking down the healthcare overhaul passed last year, the law known colloquially as "Obamacare" is now virtually certain to reach the U.S. Supreme Court where judicial experts say one man--Justice Anthony Kennedy--holds

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Editor’s Pick
FEBRUARY 1, 2011 1:00PM

After Years of Experiments Subject is Hooked on Placebos

MADISON, Wis.  Gerry van Earle can remember the first time he agreed to be part of a medical experiment as if it were yesterday, even though it has now been twenty years since he first funded his Friday night beer run with the $25 he earned for his labors.  “It

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LOS ANGELES.  Physicians for troubled "Two and a Half Men" star Charlie Sheen laid down the law today, saying they would sign off on his release from the hospital only if he observed a strict regimen of no more than four porn stars at one sitting.

"Aw, come on.  They're

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BOSTON.  Amy Linehan thinks the legal profession is boring, and doesn't want to be a lawyer.  So what's she doing in the library at Bay State School of Law, studying for mid-term exams?

"I want to be a poet, and Wallace Stevens was a poet and a lawyer, so there

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