Chatological Humor: Monthly with Moron

Mar 28, 2017

Gene Weingarten held his monthly chat with readers.

About this chat:
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Good afternoon!  Short intro today.

What we have here are political buttons made by Anne Wolfson, as inspired by this chat a couple of weeks ago .  I had suggested that Anne send them to Pat Myers, the Empress of the Style Invitational, for use as prizes, however Pat pointed out to me, quite reasonably, that they would be inappropriate for that august competition inasmuch as they are wildly politically partisan, and one of them is extremely suggestively rude.  Pat is right, of course.  Fortunately, Chatological Humor has absolutely no dignity or ethics. So I am going to award them over the next few weeks.  Today's winner will be the person who comes up with the funniest -- and most original -- nickname for the current president of the United States.  It MUST be a googlenope, until submitted to this chat.   Go. 

Secondly, I need to report here that Manteuffel has come up with simply the best name for a Washington D.C. bar.  With her permission, I am sharing it here.  Any entrepreneur actually opening such a bar will be required to have a bronze plaque in the entrance crediting both Rachel and me.   The name of the bar is "The Federal Teat."

And lastly, thanks to the several people who sent me this fine aptonym: A Kentucky lawyer who pleaded guilty to attempting to defraud Social Security of a half billion dollars.  His name is "Eric Conn."

Take the poll. We are evidently people with secrets. We start at noon sharp.

Oh, wait.  I just remembered I have a public service to perform. 

I am a fan of artichoke.  A big fan.  For virtually my entire adult life, I have prepared it in the same way: Boiled for about 25 minutes.   Then picked apart and dipped in a 5-1 mix of mayonnaise and white vinegar, and raked with your teef.  It was great.

I lately discovered, through Molly, a far better recipe.   It has changed my life.  I am going to share it now.

Split the artichoke in half, lengthwise (so the stem is split lengthwise, too.)   With a knife, remove the weirdly awful fiberglass part near the choke, making sure not to cut out the choke itself. 

Dip each half in lemon water (one squeezed lemon in a soup bowl of water).    Coat each half liberally with olive oil, place face down in a baking dish (aluminum disposable works fine.)   Cover tightly with aluminum foil.  Bake for 20 - 25 minutes at 350 degrees.  

Eat, using the same mayo and vinegar dip. 

It not only tastes substantially better, but you don't have to deal with the frickin fiberglass.  Which God put there because He hates us.

We are faced -- again -- with another question of how much the media should enable the Cheeto. Once he twitted (that's not a typo) that Obama had tapped his phones, it seems to me that the real story the media should have followed is what psychological forces drove him to do it, and whether he's capable of being the President. Instead, we're onto another cycle of "It's probably false, but we're going to give airtime (and newsprint space) to any statement that would tend to support the allegation or even give a modicum of credence to it." Doesn't that just play into his hands? Your thoughts?

Yes.   You have put your finger on something that drives me nuts, and I'm going to try to explain it. 

The news media, in general, are part of The System.   They are an unusual part of The System, in that we strive for a higher calling -- much of our job, as part of the System, is to hold the system accountable.  But we are also part of the system.   We have inherent respect for authority.   We tend to give benefit of the doubt to those chosen as leaders.   It's not a bad impulse, but in some ways it is failing here. 

Trump is an inveterate, congenital liar.   He is unlike any president before.  The media's role must be to point this out, and we are mostly doing that.   But that benefit of the doubt thing keeps kicking in, almost like a reflex. 

Yes, Trump simply lied about Obama and wiretap.   He needs to be asked to defend this every time he puts his face in front of a camera.

Did you all see the Wapo piece on Scott Pelley?  He's got the right idea.

...suggests that we are mostly a bunch of happy, unapologetic adulterers.

Yes!  That is how I read it, too.  Though it is possible the reference is more to porn addiction.

Last week you seemed to be pessimistic that the investigations into the Clown's dealings with Russia would amount to anything. Originally, I was with you. However, I'm beginning to sense that details about disturbing financial dealings between the Clown and his team with the Russians and collusion with Russian hackers to sway the election will actually come to light, particularly since Comey will want to redeem himself (i.e., HRC email fiasco) and uncovering what will be the biggest scandal in modern US politics (perhaps ever?) will solidify him as an American hero once again. After the last several days, have you changed your mind?


There were stories today that Jared will be forced to testify about his personal meetings with Russians.

Wikileaks is not our friend. Wikileaks is flat out going to get undercover operatives killed. If their goal is worldwide transparency, why do they only release US documents? I'm a very liberal Democrat, but I understand that clandestine operations are a necessary evil. This stuff is not okay.

Agreed.   I also strongly protest Assange's contention that he and Wikileaks are journalists.   This is not journalism -- journalism involves analysis, informational triage, prioritizing, and so forth.   Journalism involves, ideally, expertise.  These guys are just information dumps, and they can and have been used as dupes.

If the answer to #3 is "Not much", how can the answer to #1 be anything other than "No, not really"?

For the same reason that in polls about religion, the majority of people say they strongly believe in God and an afterlife, but also that it is not  all that important to their lives.  

Can Billionaire Donald Trump afford Tie Clips? See the photo.

Trump's relationship with his ties deserves at least as much negative scrutiny as his relationship with steak.   He never seemed to have reached a basic understanding of how to tie a necktie: They dangle too long, right down in front of his fly.  The Scotch tape part is the least of the problem.   He's just a boor, in general.  

Wow.  You know you have a powerful aptonym when the writer feels obliged to point it out.

So as long as we're talking sex, I don't like it. It does nothing for me. I prefer not to do anything related to "the act." But I'd really like a romantic partner. What am I to do?

Find someone like-minded.  No?

So I just found out my wife uses my beard trimmer to do lady landscaping. I have no idea how to feel about this. I vacillate between "ooh" and "whoa."

I think it's woooo.

I'm not really interested in mental, sexual, or bodily stuff (er, particularly yours), and we all know about your undisclosable opinion. What I want to know: is there anything you've done as a journalist that you would very strongly not want people to know? I know you've fessed up about the pretending to be a doctor thing, so I assume it would have to be worse than that.

This is a really canny question. 

I did something worse than the doctor thing very early in my career.  Something deeply dishonest.  I was 24.  I don't talk about it.  

I have been, I believe, entirely ethical since.   And you know why?  Because that first thing scared the living crap out of me. 

I believe I've only discussed that first thing with one person, a fellow journalist.

Vinegar and mayo? What?? What happened to melted butter? I thought that was the whole reason they were invented: we needed a delivery vehicle for melted butter.

You are confusing artichoke with lobster.  An understandable mistake.

The two prime locations for The Federal Teat are on K Street near Farragut Square, and on Pennsylvania Avenue, SE, near the Eastern Market Metro Station. Either location is guaranteed to attract a horde of lobbyists who really suck.


This is right up there with "how to make your own croissants." Way more trouble than it's worth.

Can we make a deal?

Do it, and then report back.  And if you decide it was not worth the work, you will a Truck Fump button.

Logically, what you say doesn't make sense because if you boil the whole artichoke, you're gonna have to remove that crap later, anyway.

Obviously, you've never had a partner that knows what they are doing.

I think that's harsh.  I think there are asexual people who still want love.   I don't think that's abnormal, or shameful.

Gotta be more about porn than adultery. By definition, someone else knows about the adultery.

Yes, good point.  

Read somewhere with regard to the ridiculous tweeting that basically Trump has the laser pointer, and we're all cats. Seemed like an appropriate analogy.

That's excellent.   But it's giving Fump too much credit.  I don't think his distractions are entirely deliberate.

We were so sad to hear the Post Hunt was cancelled this year. What would it take to get it back in the calendar? Thousands of people in DC love it and look forward to it every year. If it's just a matter of money, then will you tell us how much you need and let us do some fundraising for you?

It is just a matter of money, but the money is significant and we are a bit exhausted at trying to make the case to management that this should not be a profit center; that its value in terms of goodwill transcends profit.   Dave and Tom and I don't really want to be in charge of fundraising.  That's work, not play.

I am thinking it will come back next year, with a new business plan of some sort.

Yes, we have considered Kickstarting it, but the cost is pretty high.  Do you think you could raise $150 K?   I'm not so sure.


So, the 3/24 Baby Blues strip included Wanda listing among her strengths "unclogging toilets with her bare hands." What if she "pre" unclogged toilets in this manner (attending to the work before attempting the first flush)? Most disgusting thing ever? Or something a lot of people actually do? Asking for a friend.

I don't see any difference between your two scenarios.

Assuming he gets impeached eventually, Commander in Brief. It's not a GoogleNope, but at a glance the hits aren't related to Trump.

Not bad.  You are in the lead.

35 y.o. new mom (yay!) here. I am a recovering alcoholic - 5 years sober - and when I first got sober the shame was debilitating. I was a reclusive, all day drinker by the end and went through withdrawal several times which compounded the spiral down; I could barely function. When I became sober all my actions of the previous years haunted me; I played them on repeat in my head, especially things I couldn't remember during black-outs which left me filling in the blanks. Actually, I developed a lot of social anxiety when sober and found interacting with people, even at the grocery store, would send me into sweats. Slowly I worked away from the shame and now I am happy to be sober and not ashamed of who I was. I'm not proud of what I did but it helped me be a better, more compassionate person. I also appreciate many things about life that I took for granted. I don't advertise any of this to people, but I wouldn't feel bad if someone found out. Everyone has problems.

Thank you.  Nicely stated.  

Very interesting poll about getting hacked. I'm honestly shocked that the majority only said they would be "mildly embarrassed." I guess maybe not everybody keeps big secrets. I checked "completely humiliated." This is because I have a fetish. I probably can't/shouldn't say what it is on here but it is not a socially acceptable fetish. Actually acting on it, in fact, would be pretty morally reprehensible (but not illegal, it isn't pedophilia). So I never have and never will. It's an unfortunate part of my sexuality that I would really like to get rid of but can't, any more than it's possible for people to pray the gay away. If my partner found out about it, I'm sure she'd accept me in spite of it, because she's awesome, but the truth is I have absolutely no desire for that to happen; I really just want to take it to the grave. Truth is, a scenario where all my search history was somehow made public is just about my worst fear, well past heart disease or getting murdered or whatever.

Interesting.   This is in reaction not to today's poll, but to a similar one we did a few weeks ago.  The poll asked what would happen if your Internet searches and emails were combed through and published by someone who disliked you.


Today's poll is related, obviously, and deliberately.  I am kind of amazed at how many people have a secret only they know.  That's quite a high bar, isn't it?   It shouldn't really surprise me, though.  I have one, too.

Which car would you get of the following 3 (you're a car expert, right?)? Rav-4 Hybrid Mazda CX-5 (2017 - hasn't come out yet) Subaru Outback This is for a family of 4. Gracias!!

I'm not a car expert.   But I'd get whichever comes with a manual transmission, which, I fear, is none of them.

Let me know when they're 3 for a dollar at Safeway...... [Let's see if you get the reference]

I don't .   But you are right, artichokes are pretty expensive.  Harris Teeter occasional has $2 apiece deals. 

I am an artichoke fanatic, though.   Oysters and artichokes.  I'll pay too much for both.

My secret is medical.

Ah, I should have thought of that.  Like, herpes.  Hey, isn't it great that this chat is anonymous?  The odd thing is we at the Post know who you are, Herschel Wapsnotter of Bowie, Maryland.

Long time lurker here. I don't think I am necessarily a liar for answering no, not really to the poll. The way the question is worded implies that there is something that ONLY you know about yourself. I honestly can't think of anything that ONLY I know. There are various things that I wouldn't particularly want specific people to know but I honestly can't say there is anything about me that at least ONE other person does not know. Given that at least ONE other person knows it, there is always the risk that it could get out, and by telling at least one other person that implies that I am willing to accept the embarrassment of it getting out, otherwise I wouldn't have told anyone. Is this the wrong way to look at it?

That's the high bar!  It's what has surprised me.  

Waiting for Obamacare to break won't take long if Trump really wants it to break. All he has to do is zero out funding for the IT staff running the website. You can't sign up for Obamacare if the website is always broken. And then he will allocate no money for advertising. I am afraid these guys will accomplish their goals by executive funding decisions to make up for what they couldn't do legislatively.

I have a similar fear.    It is easy to sabotage it from within.  But, you know, we have a media.   The media is on the case.   I think it would become plain what they are doing.

Take a look at the name of the apartment building on the west side of Overland Ave in Los Angeles at this location in Google Street View.  The question is, was this intentional, unwitting, or were they trying to spell Capri and the sign maker screwed up? Incidentally, I lived in this neighborhood for eight years and I can confirm that the sign is (unintentionally) accurate.

The font suggests to me that they were trying to spell Capri.

There's been a lot of back and forth between you and some chatters about the role of the media regarding Trump, both before and after his election. I am not meaning to pick on you or the WaPo, but man, you would think you all would have LEARNED something by now. When Trump throws the dead cat in the middle of the dinner table (ex., Obama "tapped my wires"), you need to quit looking at the dead cat and start looking around at something else. This is his M.O.: distract the media from the real issue, whatever that might be. You need to look for that real issue, the one he is trying to distract you from. Melissa McCarthy as Sean Spicer on SNL said it pretty well (paraphrasing): here's a shiny object for you monkeys to look at.


He's trying to play us, it is true.  But look at his approval rating.  There is a cumulative effect of all the idiot lies and adolescent charges.  People are getting fed up.


This certainly LOOKS like another effort to cover up potentially damaging info about Trump's people and the Russians. Is there any other way to read it?

This is the story to which you refer.  And yes, it stinks.  

Hey, someone needs to say this, so it might as well be me.  The Wapo and the NYT are saving the republic.  I mean, just for the record.  I am hugely proud of my paper, and that other one.

Gene, I normally tend to vote for the candidate that serves my personal interests best, while I didn't vote for Trump I cant help but recognize that my career and business prospects have seen a significant uptick since he took office that weren't on the horizon with Obama/ Clinton. I understand the backlash against a lot of his actions and policies, but honestly I am not a member of any of the groups most directly affected by his attacks. How do I reconcile what is proving to be advantageous to my personal interests and quality of life with the interests of the "greater good"?

It's a reasonable question, and I fear my answer will seem facile and obnoxious.   But I think it is manifest that Trump is bad for this country in the long run.  He is both malign and incompetent.  I think you will find your windfall to be temporary.  

I think being any President's Press Secretary is the hardest job in the world, being Trump's Press Secretary is even harder than that. My question is, do you think he believes what is coming out of his mouth? Or do you think that in his mind, he looks at himself as playing a role, like a Broadway play or a Reality Show? Is he a "true believer" or "just doing a job?" I can't really tell. Some days, his stuff is so cringe-worthy, HE even looks like he's cringing. Other days, he looks like he believes everything Trump says.

Spicer is in agony.   It is evident.   He is emasculated.

Also, I think we don't really know who he is.   He is ordered to do and say things.   For all I know he's a decent guy who will quit soon out of shame and frustration.

One summer evening well before sunset, my spouse and I jaywalked in the middle of the block on Connecticut Avenue in Woodley Park. Our destination was the Japanese restaurant more or less across from the Metro stop. Anyway, we had a good opportunity to cross in the middle of the block and executed the maneuver smoothly. Well, the one thing that wasn't so smooth was that when we got to the sidewalk on the other side there was a DC policeman who was waiting for us and smiling. He kept smiling as he wrote me a warning ticket. My spouse, she told him it was my idea and he kept smiling. I've jaywalked since but have followed Proulx's advice to watch for the police. Also, about Johnny B. Goode and the Weight. Isn't the Weight more country than rock and roll? I think it's safe to say that Chuck Berry wrote the greatest rock and roll song.

I can't think of The Band as "country."  To me, they are sui generis.  They are what they are.  They are the greatest band ever.  I consider the brown album the greatest album ever.  I know, I know.   Feel free to yell at me about David Bowie and Queen and whatever.

I once read a WWII-era British novel that mentioned a crossword clue, "An ally, between the poles." The answer was "Susan." "USA" was the ally, and it was between the S and N poles. I do not do crossword puzzles, but my impression is that modern American clues are much more straightforward. Am I correct? If so, is this a geographical difference, or a time difference?

That is a very typical "puns and anagrams" clue, for an American audience.   With one exception, actually.  There needs to be some oblique reference, in the clue, to the name Susan.  Otherwise, it's not fair.

I recall at one point you were going to write a story or a book about a day on which nothing ostensibly remarkable occurred and I believe such day was December 28, 1986. Has such project been scrapped?

No.  I am halfway through it, or a little more. Have written 65,000 words.  It is taking forever.   The reporting is torture.  I have the greatest publisher in the World.  He is David Rosenthal, of Blue Rider Press, and he is being kind and understanding and patient.  

Mine getting out would not ruin my life or jeopardize my job. It would prevent anyone who knew me since 2008 to EVER trust me again. BUT I am not that worried about it coming out...I am now sober!

I'm not quite following this.   I gather you were an alcoholic and are no longer.  Why would that affect how people thought of you now?

Seeing today's news about the Bloviator-In-Chief's ratings being down to 37% made me wonder what Nixon's were near the end. It looks like Nixon was around 25%. Which makes me wonder, who are those people? What does it take to change their minds? Because we are in the same position now where it appears the Grand Cheeto is going to have a base of about 30-35% approval no matter what it does.

He's going to go lower.  He has not bottomed out.  There will come a time when the people who he conned will realize they were conned.

It's an old joke.

Ah.  Thank you. 


You know, I occasionally use a version of this joke, and never check to make sure there is no such person with exactly that name.   Big mistake.

The best name ever was invented by (Jennifer Hart, Arlington) in the Style Invitational about 20 years ago.   The contest was to come up with awkward lines for newlyweds, or something, and hers was "How strange!  My birth mother was named Clytemnestra Van Nunkyhaven, too!"

Does it count if the someone else is an animal?

Speaking of which, if you ever get a chance to see Albee's "The Goat, or Who is Sylvia," do.

Yes, this. And there are organizations for the asexual to meet, just like Parents Without Partners. The asexual poster should go lookng for them.

Good point.   There have been times in my life, fraught times, when I WISHED I was asexual.

Gene - can you please appeal to the Powers That Be at the Post to stop with these safaris to Ohio and Pennsylvania and Montana to talk to the real Americans who still support Trump? It accomplishes nothing and has the feel of going to the zoo and saying, look at all the funny animals out here. Nobody is changing these people's minds, and it's so annoying to read about the brave liberal reporter who went out into Real Murica to interview people and help us confused liberals better understand these poor downtrodden Trump voters.

I hear you.

I really disagree with people who are always saying, "The dead cat is a distraction! Look for something else!" One, because it's still a problem that there's a dead cat on my dinner table. And two, the cat can be quickly removed from the table and then I can continue the deeper conversation. The problem to strain the analogy, is not the host tossing the cat and the cat-disposal specialist taking care of it; it's that every time you try to resume conversation, the other dinner-party guests keep saying, "Hey, what happened to that cat?" But multiple conversations can certainly happen; you just have to join the one that's of interest to you. As you say, the Times and the Post and others are certainly covering a lot besides dead cats and have been.

It is vitally important that at all times the responsible media is saying: People, this is not normal.  This is not okay.

Thank you! I love them, and I'll finish your chat later. Off to the store.


Nope. YOu have to work it out from the given clue. That's why these puzzles are so hard.


What is The Band's greatest song? For me, it's Acadian Driftwood. Yes, I know it's not historically accurate, but damn, what a song!


Can you give us some hints? In particular, have you found some tiny pebble that, inadvertently kicked on Dec. 28, 1986, set in motion all the subsequent events that have landed us where we are now?


It took me three years to realize that the organizing principle is HOLY SH-- THIS ALL HAPPENED ON THE SAME DAY.

Yeah, yeah, I know, opportunity of a lifetime blah blah blah. But other Republicans declined on what was left of their principles. He didn't, that tells us something. It's not as though the rough outlines of what he'd be expected to do weren't clear ahead of time.

Look, I am not a defender of Sean Spicer, but there is a case to be made that surrounding this guy with better people helps the country.  That you can be a mitigating factor.

I was working as a consultant helping an organization in Canada install our needlessly complicated software. I had to borrow the workstation of our main client, a jovial youngish French Canadian guy. His browser history, which was displayed right in front of me as soon as I opened the browser, had a lot of Nazi and white supremacy stuff. I could do nothing but forget it immediately. He knew I was Jewish and treated me perfectly cordially. He could have been doing research for a class paper or something. I certainly hope so.

FWIW, If you looked at my search history you would find some white supremacist stuff.  I keep tabs on these a-holes. I find it really illuminating to see what they are thinking.

I have a feeling that Trump is primarily trying to reverse or cancel anything Obama did because he is irate that an African American had the nerve to become president.

Not without merit.  The birther stuff was deeply racist.

I know you are preaching to the choir, but this is not an exaggeration.

Oh, I am not exaggerating.  This story will be writ.

I think there are a lot of people like me who would be at least mildly embarrassed if their particular search history were revealed. Incidentally, everyone call your rep today and tell them to vote NO on the broadband privacy repeal. It would allow your internet provider to sell your browsing history.

Okay, just for the record.   My browsing history would be phenomenally embarrassing.  The majority of it has to do with what I do for a living, which is absurd, but not all of it.

He's still here (drat) but it helps to have you around more often to field our angst and rants.

I will keep doing this so long as you all keep showing up.

Does anyone else think that she spends her days staring out the window from Trump Tower, wondering why she ever said, "Yes"?

I think I said this before: I think Melania Trump is a great potential story for someone.  She is an intelligent, ambitious woman, and if she ever unloads, wow.

Mine is also quasi-medical: that thing where there's always a little bit of poop left, and you have to dig it out.

Thank you so much for sharing this.

It reminds me of the greatest moment in Chatological History.  Involving the "oversharer."  Can you find it, Jess the Producer? 

Of course I can!

The Oversharer.

Another building aptonym: The Triangle Shirtwaist Factory was located in the Asch Building.

Because David Von Drehle wrote a great book about this, I can obnoxiously tell you it was "the Triangle Waist Company."

Cooks had a similar just takes longer than the boiling so I don't do it as often. Second, try it with a strong viniagrette made with balsamic, oil and salt, DELICIOUS! Everyone in my house loves them (15 & 12 year old kids who I realized were very expensive when I had to go from buying 2 for me to eat to more so they could each have their own at very early ages). Hubby likes it but feels it takes to long so doesn't eat. Lastly, while I love them, I sometimes dread ordering at restaurants as the work people I am eating with inevitably have never seen one or eaten it before and will comment, (once incessantly for 20 minutes), about it. That one was the most annoying, she wouldn't try it and also wouldn't stop talking about it.

Ooh, i believe this is the first time I have had an opportunity to make this obnoxious food observation:

I HATE balsamic vinegar.   I think it is revolting.

And be convincing. Drop the identity politics stuff. Find a way to acknowledge that at least some of the Christians are sincere in their life-begins-at-conception beliefs, without permitting them to discriminate when in positions of serving the public. Let them have their own colleges and such because those are voluntary. No discrim in sales or service. But acknowledge them. It's not their fault they're being outshouted and exploited by jerks.

Very smart. 

You know, I am the most pro-choice man on the planet, but I don't disrespect anti-abortion folks.   I disagree profoundly, but I recognize their position comes from a genuine moral stance.  I could join them in, say, opposing Trump.  

Hi, Gene: There's a distinction between British-style cryptic crosswords and the occasional NYT "Puns and Anagrams" puzzles. The Susan clue would be acceptable in the P&A puzzle, but would require including a clue that leads to Susan to be used in a cryptic. "Black-eyed girl is an ally, between the poles" might be an option. For my money, the Puns & Anagrams puzzle is a cheap imitation and not worth the space.

Understood.  And you are right.

The clue should have read something like, "A woman who's an ally, between the poles."

Yes, exactly.

I saw myself in the earlier post. Sober 5 months, not years, but the thought of drinking seldom occurs in a tempting way (it reminds me of being sick and knowing I was going to die soon). But I don't agonize over it. I tell people who I care about that this went on (of course they already knew) and that I feel better now. If they give me the benefit of the doubt, I am grateful. This is my one-step plan: repeat as needed (with new people--once is enough). Life is a little boring when sober, but so was being drunk, plus I never left the house because I knew I would fall down.

Thank you.   I think we are all helped by this sort of honesty.

There have been times in my life, fraught times, when I WISHED I was asexual.

Well, I just mean that God sort of screwed up.   He knew he had to make sex a very powerful impulse, but he might have overdone it.  

THe joke has nothing to do with Safeway. It refers to a "headline" about the world's least expensive contract killer: "Artie chokes three, for a Dollar"

Also, noted.   Um, neither of these is great.

Is this moment what led you to consult with a gastroenterologist who specializes in resolving defecation difficulties?

Indeed it is.  And it involved an incredibly honest and sweet young woman who I believe I called Poopfinger.  And my memory is that I was able to actually help her.

is a symptom of internal hemorrhoids. Yes, that would show up in my search history. Though I got there through the hemorrhoid search, not the "feeling of incomplete evacuation" search.

Thank you so much for sharing.

I love 95% of them but for me it's Across the Great Divide.

Yes, top five.

Thank you!  We're done.  Terrific questions.

See you next week.

In This Chat
Gene Weingarten
Gene Weingarten is the humor writer for The Washington Post. His column, Below the Beltway, has appeared weekly in the Post's Sunday magazine since July 2000 and has been distributed nationwide on The Los Angeles Times-Washington Post News Service. He was awarded the 2008 Pulitzer Prize for Feature Writing.

Weingarten is also the author of "The Hypochondriac's Guide to Life. And Death," co-author of "I'm with Stupid," with feminist scholar Gina Barreca and "Old Dogs: Are the Best Dogs," with photographer Michael S. Williamson.

His most recent book, "The Fiddler In The Subway," is a collection of his full-length stories. He is working on a new book, called "One Day," about the events of December 28, 1986, a date chosen at random by drawing numbers from a hat.

Gene's latest columns, chats and more.
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