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.

WASHINGTON, D.C.  The Environmental Protection Agency today released projections indicating that the nation's landfills will reach capacity in less than three years if current trends in the disposal of youth sports trophies continue.

"You get a trophy for hitting the ball off the T--or n

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JUNE 1, 2011 8:32AM

Cup Fever Grips Hub

A major sports championship is an occasion for much silliness of a predictable sort: goofy bets between mayors of the rival cities; trash-talking "us vs. them" columns by local sportswriters putting down the opposing city as a Rubesville or a modern-day Babylon, depending on its size; invidious comp

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MAY 30, 2011 12:30PM

Swimsuit Tips From Top Scientists

Summer's just around the corner--time to head to the beach!  But if, like many people, you're flabby from a winter spent indoors slurping down beer and eating fondue, here are some tips on getting into "swimsuit" shape by the world's second-most glam occupational group (after supermodels),

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MAY 26, 2011 9:27AM

Fact-Checking Your Fiction

It isn't often I sell a piece of fiction; in the seventeen years since I started to write in earnest, more often than the Boston Bruins win the Stanley Cup (0) but less often than the New England Patriots have won the Super Bowl (3).  So I'm neck-and-neck with the

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NEW YORK.  Serial husband and Republican Presidential hopeful Newt Gingrich was tapped today to host "The Real Housewives of Abottabad," a reality show that will follow Osama bin Laden's three widows as they try to rebuild their lives following the assassination of their husband.

bin Lad

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Editor’s Pick
MAY 18, 2011 8:26AM

US Hits Debt Ceiling, Gets New Credit Card in Mail

WASHINGTON, D.C.  The U.S. government reached its legal debt limit of $14.3 trillion on Monday--$46,000 for every man, woman and child in America--but avoided default on its debt when it received an unsolicited credit card in the mail on Tuesday.

Geithner:  "24% isn't too much

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Editor’s Pick
MAY 16, 2011 1:20PM

60 Under 60 List Honors the No-Longer-Youthful

BOSTON.  Carl Zucker was crushed in 1979 when he didn’t make the annual “30 Under 30″ list of the Boston Weekly Merchant, a feature that highlights up-and-coming members of the city’s business community.  “I did everything right,” he says.  “I

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GREENWICH, Conn.  It's Sunday night, and Dan Lavesque would like to be relaxing with his kids and maybe drinking a bottle of Whole Foods Lemon Italian Sparkling Mineral Water, but his wife Cindy has a different program in mind.

Suck it up.

"C'mon," she says as she hands him a

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Like many people, I'm getting older by the minute.  I'm not going to tell you how old I am, but to keep things in perspective, I remind myself that when Shakespeare was my age he'd already been dead for seven years.

Shakespeare:  Wrote most of his plays before his untimely
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MAY 13, 2011 8:19AM

Richard Nixon on Acid

Jefferson Airplane singer Grace Slick was invited to a tea party at the White House as a fellow alumna  of Tricia Nixon’s finishing school.  She planned to spike Richard Nixon’s tea with LSD, but was denied entry because she had been determined to be a security risk.
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MAY 12, 2011 9:16PM

The Mangy Tiger

As we entered the circus tent
We passed the big cats’ wagon.
A sleeping tiger lay
in what I knew was hay.

I looked closely; it seemed
like our cats at home, but
gigantic, as if they were
just models of the tiger.

As it dozed, its breath
caused its whiskers to
bend like wheat in the wi… Read full post »

INDIANAPOLIS, Indiana.  A six-year study by industrial psychologists, the first of its kind, reveals that inspirational posters in company cafeterias and employee lounges cause depression among workers and may trigger homicidal rages.

"Hang in there--we just canceled your health ins

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MAY 12, 2011 8:02AM

God Save the Tabloids

GUM CREEK, Mo.  Clell Fulsom, a crawdaddy fisherman and long-time postmaster of this town of 230, is mildly surprised when this reporter tells him it would be considered "tacky" in other parts of America to park a dilapidated truck in one's front yard for parts, as he has done.


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MAY 8, 2011 5:18PM

Real Good for Free

It had been one of those Boston Aprils when it never seemed to stop raining.  You wanted spring to begin, Mark thought to himself.  You wanted to see the girls take off their winter hats and coats and scarves and walk the street in lighter colors, not the dark shades

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According to Henry David Thoreau, most men (by which he meant women, too) lead lives of quiet desperation.  Why, then, does quiet desperation do so poorly at the box office?

       West of Boston

After all, people go to baseball movies because they like base

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Editor’s Pick
MAY 6, 2011 9:02AM

Laptop Shows bin Laden Frustrated by On-Line Shopping

Navy Seals carried off five computers, ten hard drives and more than 100 storage devices such as flash drives from their raid on Osama bin Laden's compound.

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Editor’s Pick
MAY 4, 2011 9:34PM

Writers Fight Floods With Unsold Manuscripts

FLORISSANT, Mo.  When Armand St. Stephen, a recent graduate of Tulane University, heard that the upper Midwest had been inundated with unprecedented spring rains, the New Orleans native who survived Hurricane Katrina decided to do something about it.  "It's not enough t

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Sometimes as I sit at my desk at night, my hands pressed to my temples, trying to come up with a poem that will be rejected by both The New Yorker and My Little Messenger, I recall an offhand remark by W.H. Auden that I read many years ago.  Where,

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MAY 2, 2011 3:54PM

The Girls of Spring

The girls of spring, they’ll stop your heart

When they forsake cosmetic art

They practiced back when skies were grey

and clouds obscured the light of day.



The girls of spring, first pale and wan,

Begin to get some color on.

It rises like the sap to cheeks… Read full post »

WASHINGTON, D.C.  The American Civil Liberties Union has prevailed over a crowded field of competitors to win the right to represent Osama bin Laden, the world's most wanted terrorist, in criminal trials and possible civil rights claims against the United States.

"Fifteen cents

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APRIL 30, 2011 3:40PM

The Perfumed Kitten

The cat had come to the house on a cold October night.  Mom went to the front door when we opened the drapes and saw her, an orange tabby, meowing as if she already belonged us.   I don’t know what possessed Mom to take the cat in.  We already had

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 I am sure, if we are really nice and stay quiet, everything will be alright and the president will become more centrist and that all his tough talk is just words.  I mean, he really loves us and when he beats us, he doesn't mean it.

email from Daniel Loeb, ObamaRead full post »

APRIL 28, 2011 5:28PM

The Poet's Embezzlement


                               Every poet cheats his boss. 

             &n… Read full post »

APRIL 27, 2011 8:09AM

Biz One-Upmanship 101

Stephen Potter, a British humorist who has undeservedly faded into obscurity, is the father of "one-upmanship," a strategem for besting an opponent--somewhat unfairly--without actually cheating. 

One accomplishes this by throwing an opponent off his game without violating any

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