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Overheard in a crowd

 One of the many bad things about living through a pandemic is that one doesn't get to overhear great lines in a random crowd anymore. There aren't any random crowds where lots of unrelated conversations might be going on.  So, I can't blame this on that. It is a thought that occurred to me, I'd like to live long enough to overhear this in a crowd. "Lazy? I'm the opposite of lazy. I'm hypo-allergenic." 
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Some context for a cliche

"April is the cruelest month."  Every year at this time somebody is quoting that line, from T.S. Eliot THE WASTE LAND, in lieu of anything better to say about whatever cruelty is regnant. Or just as a way of complaining about taxes.  What is the context? Here is a bit of it. "April is the cruelest month, breeding Lilacs out of the dead land, mixing Memory and desire, stirring Dull roots with spring rain."  Love those gerunds, a comma they are following,  Bred, mixed and stirred: A line they are ending

Cannabis and Reparations

 So: one municipality has decided to pay race-based reparations.  How? with a tax on cannabis.  As Spock would say: "fascinating."  The trend toward state-level legalization of cannabis has gone pretty far, and there is now a friendly administration. Back in January 2017, when I attended a San Diego conference o the industry, there was a good deal of nervousness about the incoming administration and what action it might take. Well, it did not act as a friend, but it always had other things on its mind, so the state-legal systems have survived it. The Biden administration might be willing to go further than to allow such systems to survive. It might integrate them with federal banking law in an important respect, which could lessen the amount of violent crime. After all, without that integration, cannabis merchants are mostly cash businesses. They leave a lot of cash around the premises, and that in turn attracts violent ctime. So ... let these legitimate businesses open bank

The Peers or the Peerage

 She called them the peers and thought "pressure" from them on potential trouble makers like Marcus would be a good thing. Peer group pressure, they had told her about that in her education courses. It can be a valuable substitute for more formal sources of discipline.  But the left front quadrant of the class came to think of themselves as distinctively "the peerage," and the significance was somewhat different from what the instructors in those educational courses had meant. She didn't notice that.  Even the barking, like mad dogs, which amused them passed her notice by. 

South Bend or South Korea

It was 1952. It was a tense conflict of wills between father and son. The father, a firm supporter of Robert Taft who still hoped Taft could could manage to take the Republican nomination away from that interloper Ike, had discovered forbidden literature in his home. Pamphlets expounding on the wonderful qualities of ... Adlai Stevenson!  Gasp.  The son, who owned up to having acquired those materials non-accidentally, was expressing the usual adolescent boy's rebellion against Dad, and a belief acquired somehow as a fairly typical high school student, that the New Deal has started something great 19 years before and that the great work ought to be continued, not derailed because people like his father were grouchy.  The father, a graduate of Notre Dame University, decided that a drastic measure was necessary. His boy would graduate from Nyack High in May. He must be told sternly that he would then attend Notre Dane, where the perfectly reliable faculty would straighten out his Com

What is a SPAC?

  For those of my readers not into financial-world fads, here is a new acronym from that domain. A SPAC  has nothing at all to do with a TROWEL. It is a Special Purpose Acquisition Company. What does that mean? You ask, ah ... A SPAC is a company with no commercial operations, one that exists for the purpose of acquiring another company. More specifically, it is a company with a listing on an exchange that exists for the purpose of acquiring another company that is not and would like to be on that exchange.  Consider a simple example. I invent a new type of shoe. I believe lots of people will rush to buy it. I create the company "Faille Footware."  Now, for a lot of reasons I won't get into, I might want Faille Footware (FFW) to have a listing (NYSE: FFW). But that is a difficult and lengthy process. What's the quick and easy way? To have somebody else who already IS on the NYSE buy me up. Then the new company can change its name to Faille Footware and adopt an approp

How do you find the hypotheneuse?

  is my favorite "Dad joke." Literally. It was one of my father's favorites. How do you find the hypotenuse? In response to this question, the victim/stooge naturally starts explaining the Pythagorean theorem. He is interrupted. "No, the best way to find the hypotenuse is to look for its tracks around the watering hole." That's the very best in Pythagorean humor, folks. Happy April Fools Day.