jan’·i-zar·y /ˈjanəˌzerē/ n 1. A member of the Turkish infantry forming the Sultan’s guard between the 14th and 19th centuries. 2. A devoted follower or supporter. Also sometimes spelled janissary.
1. Mustafa was the loyal janizary of Islamic State and, following its orders, blew up mosques and with his trusty AK-47, hosed down the crowds in shopping malls.
2. Being the janizary of the Grand Mufti, Abu ish-Kibibble took a young bride. By young we mean she was nine so she was underage. But only by a year.
So, three more people (read: teen aged pukes) got plugged in a parking lot war. No news there. Happens every day. And once again the anti-gun crowd will make its usual and useless noises. We must understand: Gun control will never fly – at least not inside twenty years and it’s a long shot even then. Still, it would be nice to have some peace and quiet and not have people sleeping in their bath tubs as armor against stray rounds coming through the walls, thanks to the Gunfight at The OK Corral taking place in the alley.
What to do, what to do.
Well, how about a bit of education? We are always talking about education as the ticket to a life of ease and plenty, right? We feel that knowing a bit of algebra and some trigonometry will help a person figure things out. The American language is a good subject too. So is Civics (or Social Studies; it goes by many names). Sometimes students even get a smattering of law. And of course, PhyEd, where a kid can get his skull crushed playing America’s favorite sport.
I maintain we should add a new subject to the middle school curriculum: Firearms 101. It would be mandatory and would work like this.
First An NRA-certified instructor or state cop will explain the finer points of firearms, how they work and what they do. Perhaps even delving into firearms as recreation (skeet, trap, target . . .). Bring in a deactivated hunting rifle, shotgun, revolver and an automatic. Show the kids how to handle them. Let them get some hands-on time with the firearms.
Second Bring in an ER doctor who can put on a show-and-tell about crippling and fatal gunshot wounds. Lots of blood and guts and the more the better. A few pictures of gunshot suicides would be salutary as well. I think this section must also include a real-life video of what happens to a living thing when it gets shot — put a .22 round through a rabbit, say.
Third Next comes a psychologist, “You know why you wanna gun? I’ll tell you why you wanna gun!”. This will be a disquisition on why kids – and the kinds of kids – hanker to be on the public streets packing a .40 S&W and thinking they’re Billy The Kid.
Fourth A prosecutor from the Attorney General’s office comes in to talk about the law. What constitutes the various degrees of manslaughter and murder, and the prison sentences attendant thereto. Show some pictures of old, dejected, used-up cons sitting in the prison yard and tell the kids, “You shoot someone? I’ll do this to you. You are warned.”
And finally If (when) the instructors see some student siting there with bright hot eyes, licking his lips and drooling with anticipation, he or she is packed off to the rubber room straightaway.
There will be no quizzes, no tests, no finals and no grades. And as I said, attendance will be mandatory.
om’a-dhaun‘ noun A fool, be he man or boy. Examples:
1. Jack Sprat, the town omadhaun, bought a used pink Lincoln that had oil dripping into a puddle beneath the car, anti-freeze that looked like brown cottage cheese, drove down the road kind of sideways, and smelled like a wet dog had been living in the backseat.
2. Sally Saucer, not too bright a light herself, married the omadhaun Jack Sprat and whelped a son that had one eye in the middle of his forehead.
Last night it rained. It’s been as dry as dust around here for weeks so the rain was appreciated by most people. But not by me. Rain means the dried-out grass will come back to life and I’ll have to start mowing it again. Of course the weeds will start growing too, so Jo will be on me to go dig them up.
Out here in Western Washington, mosquitoes are only a sometime problem. Normally, our summers are dry so the little creatures dry up and die before they can ruin our lives. Of course there are enough hollow stumps, discarded tires and small declivities to hold the stagnant water in which the little bastards reproduce, so we are never entirely free of them.
Until this year. Since late April, we’ve not gotten an inch of rain (see the chart below). This head start on the dry season has killed off the great preponderance of the larva, and with few convenient wet places in which to lay eggs, we are enjoying a massive die-off. It should take years for them to recover their numbers. Ah, but with Global Warming, dry times like these promise to be the norm, so we may add mosquito-free evenings to mowing-free days.
Blessed, blessed drought.
en-der’-mic adj Acting through the skin, or by direct application to the skin, as an endermic medicine. Examples:
1 Waldo was having some ED problems, so his mistress packed him off to the doctor. The good physician told Waldo to visit the local drugstore and pick up one of those skin patches that cure “Low T”. But Waldo bought two, slapped on both, and now suffers an embarrassing case of priapism (which we shall define at a later date).
2. Joyce suffered a sudden pain in her chest, left arm and jaw and began to gasp for air. She popped a nitroglycerine tablet, an endermic medication, under her tongue and within moments was back on the squash court, right as rain.
cle’-do-nism (kle’-do-niz’m) n The avoidance of unlucky words, or the use of euphemisms, to avoid misfortune. Examples:
1. Johny says “BM” instead of “shit”. That’s because he’s only six and his mother would wash out his mouth with soap.
2. William will never use the name of his ex-wife (Judi) for it brings back all sorts of bad memories — dumpy little house, beat-up old Dodge, bill collectors and the woman herself.