Monthly Archives: March 2020

Closed Caption Confusion

(After learning that the Crayola Virus was not real, I turned my attention to learning about the Coronavirus….)

Those who know me best know that when I get focused on something I sometimes don’t pay much attention to what is going on around me. Maybe like when I nearly started a whole new epidemic the other day when I was after a cookie and mis-heard the TV about this new disease and announced the Crayola Virus to the world!

Anyway, I had the TV on so I would catch the update on crowd limits and other precautions for the real virus. Trouble is, I was thinking and writing and the TV sound was drowning out my thoughts. So, I put the TV on mute and activated the Closed Captioning feature. I can read the TV scripts and notice when pertinent comments come across, even when I am working on my latest article or sermon.

So, I did notice when the announcement came scrolling across the screen and I stopped to read it. However, our tv is kind of old and it’s Closed Captioning feature leaves a little to be desired. My initial reaction to the new policies was understandably a bit skewed.
I was immediately thrown off balance when they told me I should listen to the CDs. I thought most people had gone digital, not CDs. Anyway, I expected the crowd limitations would be changed, but when they suggested that the crowd be no more than “filthy” I was shocked! I was okay with “cuffing” our sleeves and while practicing good “hijinx” might be fun, I didn’t see how it would help at all! But when they told me to practice “social dancing,” I decided I just could NOT comply!  After all, I am a married man and worse than that, I am a Baptist minister! We don’t even dance in public with our wives!

Well, this put me in quite an awkward fix until my wife – you know, the one I don’t dance with – came in from the other room to see what was going on. You see, I had pulled up an imaginary soapbox and had begun to protest. After all, I had been exempt from square dancing in the 4th grade during recess because I was a Baptist! How could I in good conscience practice “social dancing!?”. This might even be governmental intrusion into the free practice of my religion!

My wife interrupted a pretty good speech and asked what in the world I was talking about. After I told her what I had read, she explained that our Closed Captioning was pathetic and what they actually said was to listen to the CDC, not CDs! Crowds were limited to not more than fifty, rather than not more than “filthy” and we were to practice good hygiene, not hijinx! Well, all that made good sense. I could go along with all of that, but what about this “social dancing?”. She pointed out that apparently our Closed Captioning had omitted the “i-s-t” in the middle of distancing. We are to practice social distancing!

Well, I had apparently just wasted a perfectly good tirade against over-reaching authority and unrealistic policies regarding my two left feet and possibly my religion. I’m just glad that no one but my wife and this private online journal I write in will ever know about my blunder!

(Update: the Pres said not to gather in groups of more than 10! I have a friend who has 8 daughters and 1 son which makes a family of 11. The boy eats supper in his room to comply!)


Filed under Uncategorized

More Crayola

(If you haven’t read the beginning of the Crayola Virus “saga”, you’ll find it here Crayola Virus)

Since it’s just you and me here, I can tell you – due to my extensive knowledge of the Crayola Virus, I was contacted by the Secret Health And Medical Service (SHAMS) for a special assignment.

I am currently undercover as a patient in a large hospital in one of our finer IL cities to learn, if I can, what is really wrong with the three patients who are claiming to have the Crayola Virus. As you know, there is no such disease. Is there something else wrong that “they” are hiding from us? Are they up to something else altogether?

Per my mission, I went to the hospital in our hometown complaining of chest and back pains and found a way to elevate my BP (that’s code for blood pressure). I’m afraid I overdid that a little – it got kind of high. Anyway, naturally, they couldn’t find any real reason for the symptoms I presented (see, I worked that term in again!), so they sent me by ambulance to the hospital where the three suspicious cases are being “treated.”

I will have to keep my cover in play, so I will be having an EKG, an ECHO, a CT, an R-E-S-P-E CT, and maybe an RSVP. I really didn’t pay much attention. Meanwhile, I will try to slip around to patients 0,1, and 2 and try to find out what thay are up to. It may have something to do with toilet paper! I will keep you posted. Shhhh!


I snuck out of my room last night and found they had been keeping the three Crayola “patients” just a couple of doors down from me.  Two men in black suits were guarding the doorway. I could see inside and the room had three empty beds. No one in the room. I did not know at the time that the men worked for the World Health Organization (WHO) nor did I know the names of the patients. Later this morning I got a nurse to tell me confidentially the patients were Gene Rowdey, Sam “Dizzy” Dean (like the famous baseball player), and Noah Count.

As I looked past the “suits” into the room, one told me to move along. I asked if he was in charge of the patients. He said, “WHO is.”

“That’s what I’m asking you,” I said.

“I told you.”

“You told me who’s in charge?”



“That’s correct,” he said.

I said, “I’m confused,” and changed the subject. “What were you sent here to do?”

“Get Rowdey.”

“Did you get rowdy?”


“I’m just two doors down and I didn’t hear anything.”

“We were quiet.”

“You said you got rowdy.”

“We did.”

“You can’t get rowdy and be quiet.”

“We did.”

I said, “I’m getting dizzy.”

“You can’t – we already did.”

“You got dizzy, too?”

“That’s right.”

“You got dizzy when you got rowdy?”

“Yes. At the same time,” he said.

“Well, THAT makes sense. But you said you were quiet.”

“We were.”

Moving on, I said, “There were three patients here, right?”

“Yes. We sent one home.”

“Could you tell me his name?”

“He was Noah Count.”

“But he still has a name.”

“Of course he does.”

“And you sent him home?”

“He tested negative for any virus. And he was Noah Count.”

“It was okay to let him go, but you shouldn’t pass judgment on his character. Did he get rowdy?”

“No. We did.”

“But you got rowdy quietly?”

“Of course. And we got Dizzy.”

“And sent one of the patients home.”

“Yes. That one was Noah Count.”

“You’re probably right.  So where are the other two patients?”

“They were taken to our main office.”

“Whose office?”


“I’m going back to my room,” I said.

“That’s a good idea, sir.”

I am still not quite sure what happened. Maybe it’s because they keep taking blood from me. ECHO stress test yet to come. After last night’s ordeal with WHOever, this should be a piece of cake!


(Since learning that the Crayola Virus in under control, I turned my attention to learning about the Coronavirus!  Check it out: Closed Caption Confusion )

Also check out these related: Too Much TV?

Too Much More of TV!


Filed under Fiction, Personal Thoughts

Crayola Virus

I would never make fun of someone who has a disease or is even just ill. Well, not anyone seriously ill. Okay, I’ve done that, too, but only because I believe laughter is truly a great medicine! Anyway, I recently posted some comments on Facebook about something I called the Crayola Virus. It was supposed to give us a little humor about the current situation in our country about the Coronavirus and what seems to be a panic. With all the hype and misinformation and subsequent panic-driven activity around the nation, I figured we could use a laugh and perhaps it might even cause some to step back and take a good look at what’s going on before joining in the fray.

I do not post much on social media and almost never with the thought of changing someone’s mind about almost anything. I am still waiting to hear from the first person who changed his or her mind after reading a Facebook post on religion or politics. After hearing about all the nonsense going on in response to this new virus, I decided to post a little satire piece. Not to change the world, but just to laugh at it a little. Here is what I wrote:

(first post)
I don’t watch much news – can’t believe most of it anyway – so I was a little shocked to hear there’s some new disease going around. I just heard a little from the other room, but it got me worried about the kids. I think they said it was a Crayola Virus.

I guess you get it from using other kids’ crayons or something. Some schools have closed. Parents and grandparents need to take those pictures off their refrigerators!  I’d say just use the same precautions we used back in the day for cooties and other stuff – don’t touch the other kids, wipe your nose, wash your hands, and for heaven’s sake – stop eating the crayons!

(2nd post)                                                                                                                                        More about this Crayola Virus: I’m not a doctor, but I played one in the Christmas play in grade school one year – I think it was 4th grade, but I’m not sure. Anyway, my advice? Take two cookies and call me in the morning!

(3rd post)                                                                                                                                            I’ve done a little research on the Crayola Virus. It seems there are over 100 different colors! Each color brings its own variation to the bug and therefore might present the symptoms differently. (I learned to use that term “present” by watching TV doctors!)
The degree of seriousness of the virus depends on the color and how you contracted it. If you merely took someone else’s crayon and used it, you have only made contact with the virus through touch. I don’t think you can get it at all from using your own crayons – likely why you were taught NOT to take someone else’s crayons in the first place! You should have listened. What do you do now? Suck it up (No, not the crayon!) – it won’t be too bad – and don’t do it again!

If you got the virus from eating a crayon, well, the good news is your stomach acids likely had a positive effect on the virus and minimized its negative effect on you! What to do? I told you before – take two cookies. The sugar will accelerate the production of stomach acids and eventually totally destroy the virus. If symptoms persist more than a few hours, eat more cookies!

On the other hand, if you got the virus by sticking a crayon up your nose, well, that’s a virus of a different color. In your nose, the virus was sniffed right into your lungs! (please excuse the technical terms)  No stomach acids there to counteract the virus. If the virus somehow did not survive the trip to your lungs, the smell of the crayon alone might make you sick anyway! That’ll pass, and cookies will help even if you don’t have the virus. And if they’re homemade, the aroma of the baking will more than counteract the odor of the crayon!

Assuming you sniffed the virus into your lungs and it survived, then you likely do have a serious case of Crayola Virus. Drawing upon my extensive experience as a gradeschool-play doctor – we had to practice a few weeks to get it right! – I’d say you’ll definitely need more that two cookies! Perhaps several over the next few days. And plenty of bedrest – no school for sure and hopefully not much work, though that may depend on whether you want to keep your job!

Sooner or later, with some common sense prevention and treatment (and cookies – did I mention cookies?), you should be able to handle it. Of course, we all know by now there is very little common sense out there to draw from, so you had better use your own! Do not, I repeat do not, listen to the media or politicians on this. Most of them cannot even color inside the lines! Doctors? Well, sometimes I wonder if they know how to color either, but then I was just a kid when I was a doctor, so it’s likely medicine has come a long way since then.

(last post)
Please disregard all previous posts about the Crayola Virus. I recently learned that I heard the TV wrong! Sometimes it’s hard to hear the TV in the living room while sneaking cookies in the kitchen. Anyway, apparently there is no such thing as the Crayola Virus. Well, there wasn’t until I posted about it! Since then there have been several reported cases – oops, my bad!

To be continued… see More Crayola

Closed Caption Confusion

Too Much TV?

Too Much More of TV!


Filed under Personal Thoughts