Noteflix’s translation of the above photo: A Great Debate is being held. Mortimer (Left) is a charismatic speaker; but knows next to nothing. Mamzelle Pinkie is full of smarts; but speaks in little ‘Peep” sounds – plus, she is a woman…so this does not bode well for her side. The Hairy Pig Qween Ezmiralda, who was the Debate Moderator, is really there for the photo-op. Such is the way of Debates these days.


  • GENDER SPECIFIC PRODUCTS:  Women pay more – around 7% more, i.e., dry cleaning, shoes, haircuts, toys, shirts, underwear, razors, et. al, …sometimes more.  How long can men keep this deal going?  Now that women are lawyers and doctors and such, the men are either going to have to pay up, or the prices of some goods are going to have to drop. Of course, to be fair, you must admit – women’s razors are prettier than men’s razors and that must add to the price discrepancy.
  • DIPLOMACY:  In Paris, the French are covering up delicate parts of some of their statues so as not to offend visiting dignitaries from Islamic States.  My question here is:  How will the Islamic States reciprocate when the French come calling?
  • FAST FOOD:  A study shows people will order more fast food items (up to 18-20% more) at the counter if they pay with ‘plastic’ than if they pay with cash.  The use of Gift cards shows a boost to the number of items ordered per customer at the counter.  My question here is:  Will the Fast Foodies buy even more if they pay with Bitcoin?
  • CONTRACTS:  During the MAGA years the U.S. Government contracts were, by ‘policy’ awarded to ‘The Lowest Bidder” unless a higher bidder was a political donor.  In ‘Business 101’, the ‘Lowest Bidder’ usually is thrown out as also providing the lowest quality.  My question here is:  Can you believe the MAGA years might return?
  • DEBATE:  There are two sides to many issues, for example:  (Side #1) I am saddened by the Topping-Off of mountains in West Virginia by the coal industry.  Granted, I have not lived in that State, nor have I been a miner – and I do not plan to visit West Virginia, but I am still saddened by what they have done to the land.  (Side #2) I talked to a man who is from West Virginia. and he said because of the Topping-Off, there are a lot of trails there for off road motor biking and it is a lot of fun zooming around where the mountains used to be.  My question here is: How does one try to have a conversation with some people and keep from going insane?

A word or so from MATHUZALA our guest Columnist:


  • “Eighty per-cent of the world’s human population eat insects.  Celebrity chefs are in on the action.  And you think our dietary habits are disgusting?”
  • “You grow food for fuel.  This raises the cost of everything.  You cannot afford your ‘Civilization’.  We will correct all that.
  • “Our studies show your economy is improving, yet your people are not benefitting.  Your people do not have the means to live within their means.  Do you not ask:  ‘How Can We Fix This’?  We will answer that question for you.”

(Ed. note: to learn more from MATHUZALA  please go to Amazon or Barnes & Noble, and buy THE RAT PAPERS and find out for yourself if you, or he, make any sense of what is going on.

And now a few NOTES FROM ABROAD:

  • I do not speak the Italian language well.  Yes, I can order a large coffee (‘Caffe Doppio, per favore.”) and do minor errands.  I do not understand much of what the locals say to me.  However, we seem to get along.  Maybe this is a good thing. that I do not speak the language. They do not know what I think about:  Guns (No!) Women’s rights (Yes!)  Vaccines (Yes!), …or any of the various hot political issues of the day.  So, maybe too much communication is the problem.  What I see from my terrace, overlooking the Piazza, is a happy version of an adult ‘Sesame Street’ in a language I do not understand.  I nod, each morning with a happy face to:  The flower man, the butcher, the baker lady, to Fabbio – my ‘Doppio’ maker, to the ‘giornalista’. And they all nod back with a smile. The life here is good, at least I think it is.
  • Take a look at what happened last night in our Piazza while I tried to eat my ravioli.




Three quotes, two of which are relevant:

  • “Never eat more than you can lift.” -Miss Piggie
  • “Life is a foreign language, all men mispronounce it.” -Christopher Morley
  • “To God I speak Spanish, to women Italian, to men French, and to my horse – German.” -Charles V, 1500-58, Holy Roman Emperor.

That’s it from this side, and ‘Hello’  (“Ciao”) to Pasquale, wherever you are.




Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

%d bloggers like this: