Tchaikovsky Sounds Funny: February 2006

Is this where I put in key words such as sex, lesbians, vampires, Christopher Lloyd and others things to which this blog do not pertain, but by putting them here, I may get hits from all the Christoper Lloyd lesbian vampire fans (and you know who you are)? This is the primarily humorous and occasionally rambling writings of Leon Tchaikovsky, humor writer. Enjoy.

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Baring All About Cheney Bears

Often I am asked: why are there no stuffed bears in toy stores? The answer is related to a forgotten part of American history. It all goes back to the days of President Theodore Cheney, an avid hunter. Once while going on a canned hunt in Texas, the owner of the hunting club tied a bear cub to a tree and offered for President Teddy Cheney to shoot the cub. President Cheney blasted that cub until he was a shredded mass. The horror of the killed cub was so great that Americans recoiled in horror, and any mention of bears to children, either as toys or in children’s literature, was permanently omitted. A planned sale of a new toy named Cheney Bears was a complete disaster; in fact, so much so, that bears were permanently dropped from toy manufacturers. And that is why you will never see a stuffed bear for sale.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Book Review: Provider of Last Resort

The author presents an insightful analysis into the closing of Philadelphia’s public hospital in 1977. The book presents the historical, political, and unintended consequences of changes in health care systems that led to the demise of the Philadelphia General Hospital. These factors are sharply focused upon and then applied to this particular hospital.

This book serves as a valuable resource even without its pooling its information into one case study. There is an excellent presentation on the history of the Philadelphia health care system from the almshouses of the 18th and 19th centuries through the patronage ridden facilities aimed towards the poor, children, and insane. It was not until the late 19th century and early 20th century when hospitals had professional nursing staffs that also lost the stigma of hospitals existing primarily for poor people. Prior, people who could afford it paid doctors to visit them in their homes and only the poor went to hospitals.

The effects of laws expanding medical care actually had the affect of imperiling public hospitals. Public financial support of private and non-profit hospitals resulted in greater commitments from these hospitals towards providing health care for poorer residents. Thus, the poor not longer needed to rely upon institutions such as Philadelphia General Hospital. Further, a city owned hospital, subject to the political whims of annual budgeting, had difficulty making long term expansions and achieving costly updating of health care services. City officials never took actions that might have qualified Philadelphia General Hospital for similar government funding streams that was being provided to other hospitals. Instead, Philadelphia General Hospital became engulfed in bureaucratic and political struggles. Failures to upgrade health care offerings caused the hospital to fail minimal government standards. A decision to close the hospital along with a promise from city officials that there would be no layoffs of PGH staff concluded a major local political battle.

This is a highly recommended book on the history and politics of hospitals with insights on how one hospital folded.

Prostitute Politicians Getting Spanked During Cameron Diaz Assassination Plot

Tom Malin, a candidate for state legislature in Texas, admitted that he used to be a prostitute. He then added he used to sell Mary Kay cosmetics. Dude, you almost got away with it, but then you had to add that one killer admission.

Cameron Diaz was almost killed when a bird crashed into her car windshield. What I want to know is: which film critic hired the bird?

I think my uncle is getting a raw deal. He’s been hired to draw cartoons of Muhammad for an Austrian and Danish book denying the existence of the Holocaust.

Lt. Gov. Lucy Baxley stated “I spanked the Senate today.” She later denied the bootleg videos of her doing this would soon be available in porn stores.

U.S. Rep. Tom Tancredo, who has indicated he may run for President, recently blasted Catholics, Lutherans, Episcopalians, Methodists, Presbyterians, and Jews. Apparently he is aiming for the Mormon and atheist vote. Several months ago, Rep. Tancredo endorsed bombing a mosque. A Shiite mosque, the Golden Mosque, was hit with a bomb earlier today. Yes, Rep. Tancredo, I think that bombing a mosque will work just fine, judging by the only slightly massive protests that have resulted so far.

Creationists are updating their views. They say, over time, their ideas have evolved.

Monday, February 20, 2006

Worst Poetry of the 21st Century: Early Nominees


Words closed, long hidden in this book
Sleeping with nothing to do.
Written, urging someone to look
This poetry is for you.


Life passes through as a fading melody,
Straining to hear notes bound to reach me.
Whispers of darkness surround.
I turn on the light.
Hope illuminates the ground
Showing what is right.


A headless bird flew above
Flying strong yet going nowhere.
A head is sought for the dove
For tranquility everywhere.


Run, refugee, run
With nowhere to go.
The danger’s begun
Just escape your foe.


Yo Big Guy, the Main Cat,
We give you our respect.
Your digs are all so phat,
Your word we do inspect,
Whether uptown or downtown
We appreciate the bread.
Please do not turn us down,
We’ll help others get ahead.
All homies will avoid the bad,
And keep others from getting sad.
We are all your fan,
Cause you are The Man,


When I depart
Search nowhere.
Inside your heart
I’ll be there.


See Ricardo.
See Jannelle.
See Ricardo’s computer programs run.
See Jannelle’s computer programs run.
Run, programs, run.


I went outside
But the outsiders told me
You don’t belong here
Go back to where you belong
Go back to your people.

I went back to my people
But they told me I’d been outside
You don’t belong here
Go back to where you belong
Go back outside.

Everyone belongs somewhere
But I belong nowhere.


On a muddy pond.
Is it the pond that is murky
Or the image this is dirty?


Touch me,
Touch me like a song.
Feel me,
Feel me like a painting,
Love me,
Love me like a dream.


Haiku poetry
Five syllables in two lines
Gives it symmetry.

Thursday, February 16, 2006

I'm Not Dead, But If I Am, Search the Grassy Knoll

I am not certain which I find more disturbing: the news that Japanese people now traditionally take photographs of decreased people, or the fact that groups are Japanese people keep trying to take my photograph.

How soon before someone writes a book that it was not Cheney who shot Harry Whittington but a shooter on a grassy knoll?

I look at the place where I found the information. I sighted the sight where I cited the cite.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Ironically, Parts of Philadelphia in 1799 Voted for Patrick Buchanan

On this day in 1799, the first printed voted ballots were authorized in Pennsylvania. And, for convenience, the ballots were pre-printed as who to vote for.

There is a test to predict your chances of dying within the next four years. The test has to be updated to include newly found risk factors, such as going hunting with Dick Cheney.

President Bush has expressed outrage at the Cheney shooting, and he promised that Saddam Hussein will be brought to justice for it.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Guns Don't Shoot People; Vice Presidents Shoot People

The government states it will investigate blogs that discuss hurting the Vice President. Boy, did they have that backwards.

Remember, guns don’t shoot people. Vice Presidents shoot people.

It turns out Dick Cheney didn’t have a license to hunt quail. Cheney replied he didn’t think he needed one, explaining he had no intention of hunting Dan Quayle.

If the White House won’t let someone wear a shirt with a statement printed on it to hear the President speak, I was wondering. Will they allow someone to wear an orange vest in to hear the Vice President speak?

Dick Cheney could face charges in the shooting. If convicted, he may be sentenced to a secret prison. All this time Cheney thought he’d be sending people to secret prisons, not serving in one.

Saturday, February 11, 2006

Home Plate on Mars, Who's on First?

Politics is the art of wealthier interests attempting to convince poorer interests that it is in the interests of the poorer interests to support the interests of the wealthier interests rather than supporting their own interests.

Barrack Obama won a Grammy. I especially liked how he held his Grammy and turned to Mariah Carey, stuck his tongue out at her, and started chanting “I’ve got one, too.” For a follow-up, he’s doing to record a country and western album with Courtney Love.

Republicans are claiming Hillary Clinton is too angry to be President. They are glad that we, instead, have a President who doesn’t get angry enough to go after Osama Bin Laden until a month after the terrorist attacks and even then divert the resources from capturing or killing him to a war elsewhere.

There are reports that Scooter Libby was ordered by someone higher-up in the White House to leak national security information and that the White House knew the levees was breaking during Hurricane Katrina but did nothing. Bush reportedly is happy, claiming “at least they can’t pin blaming Iraq for September 11 on me.”

Oprah Winfrey announced she will be expanding. She will start a satellite radio channel. Oh, and she’s going off her diet.

Scientists have found a “home plate” rock formation on Mars. Thus, we may conclude that Martians invented baseball.

Celebrities are suing a magazine called Celebrity Sleuth for printing nude pictures. In other news, celebrities are fighting over each other to appear nude in Vanity Fair. Maybe Vanity Fair should buy Celebrity Sleuth.

The following tells of the adventures of Speaker Ben, better known to others as Ben Franklin, the Father of the University of Pennsylvania (among others), scientist, author, and legislator who learned there was more money in getting the printing contract for the legislature than it was being a legislator. Speaker Ben recently had his photograph taken with three entertainers:

Speaker Ben has decided he needs to emphasize the importance of arts and culture within Pennsylvania. Not only are arts a useful means of allowing people to express themselves plus allowing audiences to experience enjoyment from their work, the arts are a major source of economic development, employment, and tourism. Thus, to promote the arts, Speaker Ben decided to hang out with beautiful starlets.

Speaker Ben first created a minor scandal when he was photographed, around the time of his 300th birthday, with the young and beautiful Ellen Albertini Dow, perhaps best recognized as the Rappin’ Granny from the movie “Wedding Singer” and as the perspective love interest who should have stolen away Jennifer Aniston’s boyfriend in “Wedding Crashers”. She had the role of Momma in “Seinfeld” and as Mrs. Porter in the series “Ned and Stacey”. Ms. Dow is easily recognized from her many roles in shows as “ER”, “Will and Grace”, “Just Shoot Me”, “Arliss”,” “Six Feet Under”, “Star Trek: The Next Generation”, “Quantum Leap”, “Newhart”, and numerous others as well as from movies such as “Sister Act 2” and “Patch Adams”. She will soon be seen as Natalie Shaw in an upcoming movie being produced by Ryan McKinney.

Ellen Albertini Dow is from Mt. Carmel, where she won points with Speaker Ben for being friends with the Belfanti family. The Belfantis are known for produced superb public leaders such as Rep. Robert Belfanti. She loves Mt. Carmel and stated that she will be donating her cinematic collection to the local library.

Speaker Ben then hung out with Jennifer Darling, a literal darling from Pittsburgh. Jennifer is known as Irma in “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles”, Nora from “Astro Boy”, Reya in “Kaena”, Momma in “Hello Kitty”, and as Nemo’s mother in “Little Nemo”. She had the role of Donna in “Eight in Enough”, Peggy Callahan in “The Six Million Dollar Man” as well as “The Bionic Woman”, and as Suzanne in “Dharma and Greg”. Jennifer told Ben how much she missed her days at Carnegie Tech. Ben noted he had met two women who played the role of “Momma”.

Speaker Ben then met up with Syn De Vil. Syn is a Vampire American from the Scranton-Wilkes Barre area. Syn stated she has lived most of her life in various locations in Northeast Pennsylvania. Ben got along with Syn because he fears he and Syn might secretly be the same age, except Syn hasn’t aged one bit. Syn is known for such films that scare Ben such as “Witch’s Sabbath”, “Vampire Sisters”, “Stakes”, and “The Tenamant”. They scared Ben as much as the British invading Philadelphia.

Speaker Ben proudly reports back that the arts are alive in Pennsylvania. Pennsylvania is producing many talented people. Speaker Ben looks forward to this continued work and he hopes to create even new scandals being photographed in public with more notable people.

Hey, Ron Jeremy, want to meet Speaker Ben?

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Killing on Behalf of a Merciful God

One part of religion I don’t like is those who kill others to prove their God is more merciful.

The Iowa Secretary of State failed to provide the required legal notice that would have stricken referring to the mentally incompetent under Iowa’s Constitution as “idiot”. Had this change been change, they would instead have been referred to as “legislator”.

Justice Clarence Thomas, known for not asking questions or writing opinions as a Justice, has been writing his autobiography over the past five years. He has a good explanation for the delay: he’s waiting to do something in life.

Scientists have discovered an earlier version of the T Rex: the S Rex.

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Book Review: The Politics of Progress

This book provides informative insights into the Administration of Democratic Governor George Leader, a young reformer who served as Pennsylvania Governor from 1955 through 1959. Not only did his term end a long period of Republican political control, Leader decided to change the usual form of governing and, with a fair amount of success, he alered the governance of Pennsylvania into one that was more responsive to the public and less controlled by the existing political machinery. This book points out how it was both Leader’s vision and his wise choice of appointments of people who undertook their positions with zeal and with goals of improving their departments that helped the Leader Administration to reshape of Pennsylvania government.

George Leader was a politician with principles. He believed his campaign promises were his word and not rhetoric that could be forgotten. He demanded and achieved passage of legislation he had campaigned supporting on prohibiting conflicts of interest in government services and vastly expanding placing state employment under civil service. He insisted that school segregation be halted, began a Civil Rights division with the Attorney General’s office, fought and won the passage of legislation creating a Fair Employment Practice Council and then successfully fought Republican legislators in seeing that it was funded. Leader not only fought for increased employment for members of racial minorities, he appointed Pennsylvania’s first African American Cabinet member and increased the employment of African Americans in Executive offices from 98 to 450.

Leader was willing to turn to others for assistance, and he preferred to ask advice from people who he thought best knew the answers regardless of political party. He asked the Pennsylvania chapter of the American Society for Public Administration to study state government and recommend changers. Leader then acted to adopt many of their recommendations. This process of adopting these changes also had the benefit of attracting qualified people to administer these programs, rather than the past reliance on political patronage appointees to be the administrators. By Executive order, he moved 10,000 professional and technical positions from patronage to civil service employment.

Some managerial changes Leader implemented reshaped how government operated. He created the Office of Administration, which has provided all Governors with more direct responsibility over administering policies. He moved the state’s accounting methods from a cash basis to one that let everyone know outstanding obligations.

Leader was a believer in citizen participation. He often used citizens committees to advise him on issues. He felt they both could provide useful information as well as increase the opportunities for a greater voice from citizens.

Education was an area where Leader made an effective difference. He consolidated 81 school districts, increased teacher salaries so more graduates of Pennsylvania’s teacher’s college would stay within Pennsylvania, and he increased aide to community colleges and to student scholarships through a one cent tax on soft drinks.

Expanding special education was another of Leader’s accomplishments. In so doing over 100,000 children were added to the school roles. He created a Commission on Handicapped Children and convinced Pearl Buck to be its chair. This Commission reviewed and advised local governments on how to increase services to children with disabilities.

Leader looked at the Health Department, whose mission was to eliminate several diseases such as typhoid and tuberculosis, and he expanded it to increase working against air pollution, drug addiction, alcoholism, and for research on cancer and heart disease.

Floods and hurricanes hit Pennsylvania during Leader’s years as Governor, leading to a study of flood control and 394 flood control projects. Leader also directed that state parks be improved, which helped increase attendance to these parks from 8 million in 1955 to 20 million in 1958.

Readers learn of effective lobbying efforts. Leader’s Agriculture Secretary convinced legislators to approve the construction of a new department building by inviting them to a meeting in the old building during a particularly warm and sticky day. Agriculture also advanced during the Leader years, with 20 soil conservation districts established during Leader’s four years compared to 30 over the previous decade.

This book serves as a tremendous guide to how one Administration helped to transform Pennsylvania governance. It also presents the human side, such as Governor Leader’s political break with his Lt. Governor and Leader’s forced resignation of his Labor and Industry Secretary for resisting his efforts to reduce political influences. The new Secretary than transformed the Department into one that opened the nation’s first state rehabilitation center, instituted inspections of migrant camps, and increased the minimum wage for women and children. Readers also see how Leader antagonized some Republican legislators by the previous Republican Administration in his inaugural address, and how the legislature then killed some of his proposals, including one for a breathalyzer analysis. While the passage of time makes this more of an historical analysis than a useful current guide to improving government, the basic qualities that Leader presented: truthfulness, dedication, and above all, placing the needs of the citizens as the goal of government, remain useful as a guide to all.

Monday, February 06, 2006

The Only Public Account of the Recent New York Train Explosion

A few days ago, as my train was about 50 yards from the platform at Penn Station New York, my train exploded. Surely you all read about it. Guess not. The one time a train explodes in a major urban city and no one cares…Anyway, I heard this loud pop and then I could hear the engineer over the conductor’s walkie-talkie exclaiming “I’m filling up with smoke.” An elderly woman turned to me and asked “is that bad?” I reassured her that it is good for trains to explode and fill with smoke. That’s how they keep the train in proper maintenance.

Since we were so close to the station, the elderly woman asked the conductor “can we just walk the rest of the way?” The conductor explained that “it is too dirty out there”. I’m thinking: this is New York. The whole place is dirty. What difference should that make?

About 40 minutes later another engine pulled us into the station. So I was off to Manhattan. I don’t want to give away someone’s address, but I need to point out something. How come, in Manhattan, there is a location where the address “200” comes AFTER 202, 204, 206, 208, 210, and 212? Can’t people in Manhattan count? Plus, do you realize how confusing it is to look for a 200 address when the addresses begin with 202 on that block and only get larger? I understand this is what is called the “snob factor” where those with money prefer a round numbered address. Personally, I think it would be easier if you just put your address at “214” and wrote under your address “I am a snob”. That would make things so much simpler for those of us who have to struggle with the results of this snobishness.

(Actually, the people I visited are wonderful people who can’t help what their address is. They are also more powerful and made it clear they know people who can make me disappear, so I will only say nice things about them. Although, readers, if you notice I haven’t posted anything after a few months, please notify the proper authorities.)

I learned “Tales of the New Depression” is back on the air. For people who like really zingy anti-Establishment comedy, this is a show to watch. I will link to it as soon as I get the link to work. Each time I try to link to it, my computer explodes. I think my computer misses New York. (Mr. Rumsfeld, let my computer free.)

Friday, February 03, 2006

Hooters, Bush, Heather Locklear, and Rolling Stones: Just a Slow News Day

The Secret Service will investigate any blog that advocates violence against bush. Therefore, let me be clear: when removing a bush from your yard, be certain to cut it very gently and then place the remains lightly on the ground.

I am stunned. A local high school had 238 arrests made in the past year, within the high school. When I went to high school, there wasn’t a single arrest. On the positive side, since fewer students are available for it, I understand detentions have decreased.

The Super Bowl hired the Rolling Stones because they are afraid of a wardrobe malfunction, as what happened with Janet Jackson? Aren’t they afraid entire body parts will start falling off of some of the Stones?

Heather Locklear has filed for divorce. Delusional men all around the world are celebrating that they have a chance.

Hooters has open a casino in Las Vegas. What an original idea: have women in skimpy outfits serving customers.

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