The gargling man — t r e f o l o g y

My pre-school years were spent at the Torino apartments, in San Carlos, California, which was about a full days journey outside of San Francisco, by ocean liner. *** Those years total some of my most beloved child-hood memories, even if, after all this time, they are less whole memories than they are just unconnected fragments […]

The gargling man — t r e f o l o g y

David Bruce: The Funniest People in Books, Volume 2 — Money


• Daniel Handler has made millions of dollars as Lemony Snicket, the author of a series of children’s books that feature unfortunate events. As of 2006, he had sold something like 50 million books, and so he is doing much better financially than the average author. In fact, he has made so much money that he and his wife had to decide when Otto, their young son (two years old in 2006), would get a chunk of it. Mr. and Mrs. Handler went into a lawyer’s office and began discussing when Otto should come into money. The first age the lawyer suggested was 15, but the Handlers replied, “God, no!” The ages discussed grew higher and higher until they were higher than the age of Mr. Handler, who believes, “People of 33 should not be handling this sum of money. That’s absurd!”

• As a young man, food critic Charles Ferruza served as a novice waiter where he was once victimized by four obnoxious customers who placed a pile of dollar bills on the table. One of the customers told him, “This is your tip. For every mistake you make, we’ll take one bill off.” Of course, the situation made Mr. Ferruza nervous, and he made many mistakes, so by the time he served the obnoxious customers dessert, only a single dollar bill remained. The spokesman for the obnoxious customers told him, “Sorry, kid, you’re only getting a dollar.” Mr. Ferruza replied, “Oh, thank you so much, sir. And for your next trick, could you please stick it up your *ss?” (No, he wasn’t fired. His manager disliked the sick tipping game, too.)

• Being critically and popularly successful as a novelist does not guarantee financial success. African-American writer Zora Neale Hurston, whose novel Their Eyes Were Watching God is studied in universities throughout the world today, worked as a maid in her old age to earn money. When she died in 1960, she had little money, and when she was buried, her grave was unmarked. Fortunately, another acclaimed African-American novelist, Alice Walker, and the literary scholar Charlotte Hunt refused to let Ms. Hurston lie in an unmarked grave. In 1973, they located what they hope is her grave and put a headstone on it.

• For years, Newbery Medal-winning children’s book author Lois Lowry carried these two fortune-cookie fortunes in her wallet: YOU WILL BE FAMOUS IN A FAR-OUT PROFESSION and YOU WILL ATTEND A PARTY WHERE STRANGE CUSTOMS PREVAIL. She kept these fortunes because she wished for them to become true. (Actually, she edited one fortune. The original fortune said, YOU WILL BE RICH AND FAMOUS IN A FAR-OUT PROFESSION, but she edited out “RICH AND” because she wasn’t comfortable with an emphasis on money.)

• Theodor Geisel, who is better known as Dr. Seuss, disliked some forms of advertising. He was once offered a large amount of money to allow one of his rhymes to be used in a television commercial. When he turned the money down, he was offered an even larger amount of money, and his agent, Herbert Cheyette, told him, “If you accept this deal, you will go down into The Guinness Book of Records as the writer who was paid the most money per word.” Mr. Geisel replied, “I’d rather go into The Guinness Book of Records as the writer who refused to be paid the most money per word.”

• Advice columnist Ann Landers was thrifty, although she was also very capable of buying pricey clothing. According to Margo Howard, her daughter, she would reuse stamps that had not been canceled by the U.S. Post Office. Of course, in her line of work, she received letters with uncancelled stamps frequently. For a long time, Ms. Landers had her staff rescue these stamps, but finally the bravest person on her staff rebelled, saying, “Eppie [Ms. Landers’ nickname], we’re not doing this anymore. It’s a federal offense.”


Copyright by Bruce D. Bruce; All Rights Reserved


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Music Recommendation: Black Sunday — “Knock Knock Knock (Penny)”


Music: “Knock Knock Knock (Penny)”


Artist: Black Sunday

Artist Location: Louisville, Kentucky

Info: “Black Sunday is a rock band from Louisville, KY. Dubbed ‘Ghost Rock’ by Mike Felumlee.”

Price: FREE DOWNLOAD (2 Songs)

Genre: Rock


Black Sunday on Bandcamp