Europe ’96 video

You can watch it here: vimeo.com/3271045

I was in Bratislava, Slovakia for Doug and Jana's wedding, but this doesn't include the wedding itself. That was filmed by a professional. This video is so badly-done it's almost funny.

There’s also some footage on here from Budapest, Prague and Berlin!

Blonde jokes

A blonde is driving home and she gets caught in a really bad hail storm.The hail is as big as tennis balls, and she ends up with her car covered with large dents. So the next day she takes her car to the repair shop. The shop owner, seeing she is blonde, decides to have a little fun. He tells her just to go home and blow into the tail pipe, really hard, and all the dents will just pop out. The blonde drives home, gets out of the car, gets down on her hands and knees and starts blowing into the tail pipe. Nothing happened. So she blew a little harder, and still nothing happens.

Meanwhile, her roommate, also a blonde, comes home and asks, “What in the world are you doing?” The blonde car owner tells her how the repairman had instructed her to blow into the tailpipe in order to get all the hail dents to pop out. Her blonde roommate rolls her eyes and says,

“Hell-OOOO!?!? Don’t you think you should roll up the windows first?”

Young ventriloquist

A young ventriloquist is touring the clubs and one night he’s doing a show in a small town in ArKansas. With his dummy on his knee, he starts going through his usual dumb blonde jokes when a blonde woman in the 4th row stands on her chair and starts shouting: “I’ve heard enough of your stupid blonde jokes. What makes you think you can stereotype women that way? What does the color of a person’s hair have to do with her worth as a human being? It’s guys like you who keep women like me from being respected at work and in the community and from reaching our full potential as a person. Because you and your kind continue to perpetuate discrimination against not only blondes, but women in general…and all in the name of humor!” The embarrassed ventriloquist begins to apologize, and the blonde yells, “You stay out of this, mister! I’m talking to that little sh*t on your knee!”

Blonde GUY joke

An Irishman, a Mexican and a blonde guy were doing construction work on scaffolding on the 20th floor of a building. They were eating lunch and the Irishman said, "Corned beef and cabbage! If I get corned beef and cabbage one more time for lunch I’m going to jump off this building." The Mexican opened his lunch box and exclaimed, "Burritos again! If I get burritos one more time I’m going to jump off, too." The blonde opened his lunch and said, "Bologna again. If I get a bologna sandwich one more time I’m jumping too."

The next day the Irishman opened his lunch box, saw corned beef and cabbage and jumped to his death. The Mexican opened his lunch, saw a burrito and jumped too. The blonde opened his lunch, saw the bologna and jumped to his death as well.

At the funeral the Irishman’s wife was weeping, saying, "If I’d known how really tired he was of corned beef and cabbage I never would have given it to him again!"

The Mexican’s wife also wept and said, "I could have given him tacos or enchiladas! I didn’t realize he hated burritos so much."

Everyone turned and stared at the blonde’s wife. "Hey, don’t look at me," she said. "He makes his own lunch."

Blonde Breakdown

A blonde’s car breaks down on the Interstate one day. So she eases it over onto the shoulder of the road. She carefully steps out of the car and opens the trunk. Out of the trunk jump two men in trench coats who walk to the rear of the vehicle where they stand facing oncoming traffic and begin opening their coats and exposing their nude bodies to approaching drivers.

Not surprisingly, one of the worst pileups in history of this highway occurs. It’s not very long before Highway Patrol shows up. The cop, clearly enraged, runs toward the blonde of the disabled vehicle yelling, "What the heck is going on here?"

"My car broke down," says the lady, calmly.

"Well, what are these perverts doing here by the road?!" asks the cop.

"Those are my emergency flashers."

Deer hunting with a blonde

A blond and her mate were deer hunting out in the woods when her mate falls to the ground. He doesn’t seem to be breathing, his eyes are rolled back in his head. The blond whips out her cell phone and calls 911. She gasps to the operator, "My husband is dead! What can I do?" The operator, in a calm soothing voice says, "Just take it easy. I can help. First, lets make sure he’s dead."

There is a silence, then a shot is heard. The blonde’s voice comes back on the line. She says, "OK, now what?

Lotto

A blonde woman named Brandi finds herself in dire trouble. Her business has gone bust and she’s in serious financial straits. She’s so desperate that she decides to ask God for help.

She begins to pray… "God, please help me. I’ve lost my business and if I don’t get some money, I’m going to lose my house as well. Please let me win the lotto."

Lotto night comes and somebody else wins it.

Brandi again prays… God, please let me win the lotto! I’ve lost my business, my house and I’m going to lose my car as well."

Lotto night comes and Brandi still has no luck.

Once again, she prays… "My God, why have you forsaken me?? I’ve lost my business, my house, and my car. My children are starving. I don’t often ask you for help, and I have always been a good servant to you. PLEASE just let me win the lotto this one time so I can get my life back in order."

Suddenly there is a blinding flash of light as the heavens open and Brandi is confronted by the voice of God Himself…

"Brandi, work with Me on this. Buy a ticket."

A Blonde Buys a Coke

There was a beautiful young blonde who was going to a soda machine and she arrived there just before a business man coming to quench his thirst. She opened her purse and put in 50 cents studied the machine a little pushed a Diet Coke selection and out came a Diet Coke which she placed on a counter by the machine. Then she reached in her purse again and pulled out a dollar and inserted it in the machine. Studying the machine carefully she pushed the button for Coke Classic and out came a Coke Classic and 50 cents change. She immediately took the 50 cents and put it in the machine studied it for a moment and pushed the Mountain Dew button. Out came a Mountain Dew.

As she was reaching into her purse again the business man who had been waiting patiently for several minutes now spoke up.

"Excuse me Ms. but are you done yet?"

She looked at him and indignantly replied: "Well Duhhh! I’m still winning"

More

Q: Why did the blonde stare at frozen orange juice can for 2 hours?

A: Because it said ‘concentrate’. Q: Why did the blonde snort Nutra-Sweet?

A: She thought it was diet coke.

Q: How do you get a one-armed blonde out of a tree?

A: Wave to her.

Q: What is every blonde’s ambition in life?

A: To be like Vanna White and learn the alphabet.

Q: What do UFO’s and smart blondes have in common?

A: You keep hearing about them, but never see any.

Q: Why do blondes hate M&Ms?

A: They’re too hard to peel.

Q: How do you know when a blonde has been making chocolate chip cookies?

A: You find M&M shells all over the kitchen floor.

Q: What job function does a blonde have in an M&M factory?

A: Proofreading.

Q: Do you know why the blonde got fired from the M&M factory?

A: For throwing out the W’s.

Q: Why don’t blondes like making KOOL-AID?

A: Because they can’t fit 8 cups of water in the little packet.

Q: How does the blonde car pool to work?

A: They all meet at work at 7:45.

Q: Did you hear about the blonde who just bought an A.M. radio?

A: It took her two weeks to figure out that you could play it at night.

Q: How did the blonde burn her nose?

A: Bobbing for French fries.

Q: Why does a blonde only change her baby’s diapers every month?

A: Because it says right on it "good for up to 20 pounds."

Q: Why do blondes put their hair in ponytails?

A: To cover up the valve stem.

Q: Why don’t blondes double recipes?

A: The oven doesn’t go to 700 degrees. Q: How many blondes does it take to change a light bulb?

A1: One. She holds the bulb and the world revolves around her.

A2: Two. One to hold the Diet Pepsi, and one to call, "Daaady!"

Q: If a blonde and a brunette are tossed off a building, who hits the ground first?

A: The brunette. The blonde has to stop to ask for directions.

Q: What does a blonde say when you ask her if her blinker is on?

A: It’s on. It’s off. It’s on. It’s off. It’s on. It’s off…

Q: What do you call a blonde in an institution of higher learning?

A: A visitor.

Q: Why did the blonde call the welfare office?

A: She wanted to know how to cook food stamps!

Q: What did the blonde say when she looked into a box of Cheerios?

A: "Oh look! Donut seeds!"

Q: Did you hear about the blonde coyote?

A: Got stuck in a trap, chewed off three legs and was still stuck.

Q: Why are there no dumb brunettes?

A: Peroxide.

Q: What is the definition of gross ignorance?

A: 144 blondes.

Q: A blonde ordered a pizza and the clerk asked if he should cut it in six or twelve pieces.

A: "Six, please. I could never eat twelve pieces."

Two blondes were trying to unlock the door of their Mercedes with a coat hanger:

Blonde#1: I can’t seem to get this door unlocked!

Blonde#2: Well, you’d better try harder, its starting to rain and the top is down!

A blonde was driving down the highway to Disneyland when she saw a sign that said DISNEYLAND LEFT". After thinking for a minute, she said to herself "oh well !" and turned around and drove home.

Blonde in Pain

A young woman went to her doctor complaining of pain. "Where are you hurting?" asked the doctor.

"You have to help me, I hurt all over," said the woman.

"What do you mean, all over?" asked the doctor, "be a little more specific."

The woman touched her right knee with her index finger and yelled, "Ow, that hurts."

Then she touched her left cheek and again yelled, "Ouch! That hurts, too."

Then she touched her right earlobe, "Ow, even THAT hurts", she cried.

The doctor looked at her thoughtfully for a moment and asked, "Are you a natural blonde?"

"Why, yes," she said.

"I thought so," said the doctor, "You have a broken finger."

Blonde on horseback

A blonde had a near death experience the other day when she went horseback riding. Everything was going fine until the horse started bouncing out of control. She tried with all her might to hang on, but was thrown off. With her foot caught in the stirrup, she fell head first to the ground. Her head continued to bounce on the ground as the horse did not stop or even slow down. Just as she was giving up hope and losing consciousness, the Wal-Mart manager came out and unplugged it.

How to keep a blonde busy for hours

SCROLL DOWN

SCROLL BACK UP ^

Still More

  • How do you keep your blonde secretary occupied?

    Give her a bag of M&M’s and tell her to alphabetize them.

  • What do you call it when a blonde drives down the street with her head out the window?

    Refueling.

  • Why can’t blondes take coffee breaks?

    They’re too hard to retrain.

  • What do you call nine blondes standing in a circle?

    A dope ring.

  • Why can’t blondes be pharmacists?

    They can’t get the bottle in the typewriter.

  • What’s the definition of eternity?

    Four blondes at a four-way stop.

  • What do you call five blondes at the bottom of the ocean?

    An air pocket.

  • What do you call a basement full of blondes?

    A whine cellar.

  • What did the blonde say when she looked into a box of Cheerios?

    "Oh look! Donut seeds!"

  • Why do Blondes have TGIF on their shirts?

    This Goes In front.

  • A blonde went in to the hairdresser to get her haircut. She was wearing headphones. When the hairdresser asked her to remove them, she told her she couldn’t. The hairdresser told her she would have to take them off in order to get a good haircut and she said, "I can’t. The doctor said if I take them off I will die." So the hairdresser proceeded to cut her hair with the headphones on. In the process, she accidentally knocked them off and the lady fell over dead. They were startled and couldn’t figure out why that would have happened.They picked up the headphones to listen and heard a voice saying, "Breathe in-breathe out, breathe in-breathe out…"
  • Two blondes were walking through the woods and they came to some tracks.The first blond said "These look like deer tracks," and the other one said,"No, they look like moose tracks." They argued and argued for a while and they were still arguing when the train hit them.
  • Two blondes were in a parking lot trying to unlock the door of their Mercedes with a coat hanger. They tried and tried to get the door open, but they couldn’t. The girl with the coat hanger stopped for a moment to catch her breath, and her friend said anxiously, "Hurry up! It’s starting to rain and the top is down."
  • A young blonde woman is distraught because she fears her husband is having an affair, so she goes to a gun shop and buys a handgun. The next day she comes home to find her husband in bed with a beautiful redhead. She grabs the gun and holds it to her own head. The husband jumps out of bed, begging and pleading with her not to shoot herself. Hysterically the blonde responds to the husband, "shut up…you’re next!"
  • Hear about the blonde that got an AM radio?

    It took her a month to realize she could play it at night.

  • What happened to the blonde ice hockey team?

    They drowned in Spring training.

  • What did the blonde say when she saw the sign in front of the YMCA?

    "Look! they spelled MACYS wrong!"

  • Why do blondes like lightning?

    They think someone is taking their picture.

  • Why did the blonde scale the chain-link fence?

    To see what was on the other side.

  • How do you make a blonde laugh on Saturday?

    Tell her a joke on Wednesday.

  • Why did the blonde stare at frozen orange juice?

    Because it said ‘concentrate’.

  • A blonde woman competed with a brunette woman and a redheaded woman in the Breast Stroke category of an English Channel swim competition. The brunette came in first, the redhead second. The blonde woman finally reached shore completely exhausted. After being revived with blankets and coffee she remarked, "I don’t want to complain, but I think those other two girls used their arms."

51 Days

A bartender is sitting behind the bar on a typical day, when the door bursts open and in come four exuberant blondes. They come up to the bar, order five bottles of champagne and ten glasses, take their order over and sit down at a large table.

The corks are popped, the glasses filled and they begin toasting and chanting "51 days, 51 days, 51 days!"

Three more blondes arrive, take up their drinks and the chanting grows. "51 days, 51 days, 51 days!"

Two more blondes show up and soon their voices are joined in raising the roof. "51 days, 51 days, 51 days!"

Finally, the tenth blonde comes in with a picture under her arm. She walks over to the table, sets the picture in the middle and the table erupts. Up jump the others, they begin dancing around the table, exchanging high-fives, all the while chanting "51 days, 51 days, 51 days!"

The bartender can’t contain his curiosity any longer, so he walks over to the table. There in the center is a beautifully framed child’s puzzle of the Cookie Monster. When the frenzy dies down a little bit, the bartender asks one of the blondes, "What’s all the chanting and celebration about?"

The blonde who brought in the picture pipes in, "Everyone thinks that blondes are dumb and they make fun of us. So, we decided to set the record straight. Ten of us got together, bought that puzzle and put it together. The side of the box said 2-4 years, but we put it together in 51 days!"

Thermos

A blond woman walks into a store. Curious about a shiny object, she asks, "What is that?"

The store clerk responds, "It’s a thermos."

The blond then asks, "What does it do?"

The clerk says "It keeps hot things hot and cold things cold."

So she buys one. The next day, she brings it to work with her. Her boss, also a blond, asks, "What is that shiny object?"

She replies "It’s a thermos."

He asks, "What does it do?"

She says, "It keeps hot things hot and cold things cold."

He then asks, "What do you have in there?"

"Two cups of coffee and a Popsicle."

Lost in Space

A blonde, a brunette, and a redhead, all working for NASA, were trying to figure out where to go on the next trip.

The brunette said, "We should go to Mars."

The redhead said, "We should go to the Moon."

The brunette and the redhead sat there arguing for a while. Suddenly, the blonde shouts, "Stop arguing! I know where the next expedition should be to … the Sun!"

The brunette and the redhead looked at each other and started laughing.

The brunette finally said, "You can’t go to the Sun. You would melt or burn up before you even got close!"

The blonde said, "Not if you go at night. DUH!"

Getting Nailed

Two blondes were working on a house. The one who was nailing down siding would reach into his nail pouch, pull out a nail and either toss it over his shoulder or nail it in.

The other blonde, figuring this was worth looking into, asked, "Why are you throwing those nails away?"

The first blonde explained, "If I pull a nail out of my pouch and it’s pointed TOWARD me, I throw it away ’cause it’s defective. If it’s pointed toward the HOUSE, then I nail it in!"

The second blonde got completely upset and yelled, "You MORON!!! The nails pointed toward you aren’t defective! They’re for the OTHER side of the house!!"

Three blondes leap to their death

A police officer arrives at an accident scene where apparently three blondes have leaped to their death from a very tall building. He suddenly notices that one is still breathing so he approaches her and asks: "Why the hell did you three beautiful girls leap out of that building?"

The blonde answers in a very weak voice: "We wanted to try out our new maxi-pads with wings"

Blonde on the Interstate

As the blonde was scootin’ down the interstate, her cell phone rang. Answering, she heard her mother’s voice urgently warning her, "I just heard on the news that there’s a car going the wrong way on I-5. Please be careful!"

"Hell," answered the daughter, "It’s not just one car. It’s hundreds of them!"

The blonde’s revenge

  • Q. What do you call going on a blind date with a brunette?

    A. Brown-bagging it.

  • Q. What’s the real reason a brunette keeps her figure?

    A. No one else wants it.

  • Q. Why are so many blonde jokes one-liners?

    A. So brunettes can remember them.

  • Q. What do you call a brunette in a room full of blondes?

    A. Invisible.

  • Q. What’s a brunette’s mating call?

    A. "Has the blonde left yet?"

  • Q. What do brunettes miss most about a great party?

    A. The invitation

  • Q. What do you call a good looking man with a brunette?

    A. A hostage

  • Q. What’s black and blue and brown and laying in a ditch?

    A. A brunette who’s told too many blonde jokes.

  • Q. What do you call a brunette in a room full of blondes?

    A. Invisible.

  • Q. What’s a brunette’s mating call?

    A. "Has the blonde left yet? "

  • Q. Why didn’t Indians scalp brunettes?

    A. The hair from a buffalo’s butt was more manageable.

  • Q. Why is brunette considered an evil color?

    A. When was the last time you saw a blonde witch?

  • Q. Who makes bras for brunettes?

    A. Fisher-Price

  • Q. Why are brunettes so proud of their hair?

    A. It matches their mustache.

Going home early

Three women all work in the same office with the same female boss. Everyday, they noticed the boss left work early. One day, the girls decided that, when the boss left, they’d be right behind her. After all, she never called or came back, so how was she to know.

The brunette was thrilled to be home early. She did a little gardening and went to bed early.

The redhead was elated to be able to get in a quick workout at her spa before meeting a dinner date.

The blonde was very happy to be home, but when she got to her bedroom she heard a muffled noise from inside. Slowly, quietly, she cracked the door and was mortified to see her husband in bed with HER BOSS!! Ever so gently, she closed the door and crept out of her house.

The next day, at coffee break, the brunette and redhead mentioned leaving early again. They asked the blonde if she was leaving early too. "NO WAY," she exclaimed, "I almost got caught yesterday!"

Jigsaw Puzzle

One morning this blond calls her friend and says "Please come over and help me. I have this killer jigsaw puzzle, and I can’t figure out how to start it."

Her friend asks "What is it a puzzle of?"

The blonde says "From the picture on the box, it’s a tiger."

The blonde’s friend figures that he’s pretty good at puzzles, so he heads over to her place. She lets him in the door and shows him to where she has the puzzle spread all over the table.

He studies the pieces for a moments, then studies the box. He then turns to her and says: "First, no matter what I do, I’m not going to be able to show you how to assemble these to look like the picture of that tiger."

"Second, I’d advise you to relax, have a cup of coffee, and put all these Frosted Flakes back in the box."

Trees

A state trooper pulls a car over on a lonely back road and approaches the blonde lady driver. "Ma’am, is there a reason that you’re weaving all over the road?"

The woman replied, "Oh officer, thank goodness you’re here!! I almost had an accident! I looked up and there was a tree right in front of me. I swerved to the left and there was another tree in front of me. I swerved to the right and there was another tree in front of me!"

Reaching through the side window to the rear view mirror, the officer replied, "Ma’am…that’s your air freshener."

Dumb Blonde Jokes

  • A blonde was playing Trivial Pursuit one night. It was her turn. She rolled the dice and landed on "Science and Nature". The question was: "If you are in a vacuum and someone calls your name, can you hear it?" She thought for a few moments and then asked, "Is it on or off?"
  • A highway patrolman pulled alongside a speeding car on the freeway and was flabbergasted to see the blonde behind the wheel was knitting! Realizing that she was oblivious to his flashing lights and siren, the trooper cranked down his window, turned on his bullhorn and yelled, "PULLOVER!"

    "NO," the blonde yelled back, "IT’S A SCARF!"

  • An executive was interviewing a young blonde for a position in his company. Wanting to find out something about her personality, he asked, "If you could have a conversation with someone, living or dead, who would it be?" She quickly responded, "The living one."
  • A Russian, an American and a Blonde were talking one day. The Russian said, "We were the first in space!"

    The American said, "We were first on the moon!"

    The Blonde said, "So what, we’re going to be the first on the sun!"

    The Russian and the American looked at each other and shook their heads. "You can’t land on the sun, you idiot," they laughed. "You’ll burn up!"

    "We’re not stupid, you know," the Blonde replied. "We’re going at night!"

Mail

A man was in his front yard mowing grass when his attractive blond female neighbor came out of the house and went straight to the mailbox. She opened it then slammed it shut stormed back in the house. A little later she came out of her house again went to the mail box and again opened it, slammed it shut again. Angrily, back into the house she went.

As the man was getting ready to edge the lawn, here she came out again, marched to the mail box, opened it and then slammed it closed harder than ever.

Puzzled by her actions the man asked her, "Is something wrong?" To which she replied,

"There certainly is!" My stupid computer keeps saying, "YOU’VE GOT MAIL."

Blonde Strikes Back

A blonde walks into a bank in New York City and asks for the loan officer. She says she’s going to Europe on business for two weeks and needs to borrow $5,000. The bank officer says the bank will need some kind of security for the loan, so the blonde hands over the keys to a new Rolls Royce. The car is parked on the street in front of the bank, she has the title and everything checks out. The bank agrees to accept the car as collateral for the loan. The bank’s president and its officers all enjoy a good laugh at the blonde for using a $250,000 Rolls as collateral against a $5,000 loan. An employee of the bank then proceeds to drive the Rolls into the bank’s underground garage and parks it there.

Two weeks later, the blonde returns, repays the $5,000 and the interest, which comes to $15.41. The loan officer says, "Miss, we are very happy to have had your business, and this transaction has worked out very nicely, but we are a little puzzled. While you were away, we checked you out and found that you are a multimillionaire. What puzzles us is, why would you bother to borrow $5,000?"

The blond replies, "Where else in New York City can I park my car for two weeks for only $15.41 and expect it to be there when I return?"

WARNING NOT A HOAX SEND THIS WARNING TO EVERYONE ON YOUR EMAIL LIST. IF A MAN COMES TO YOUR FRONT DOOR AND SAYS HE IS CONDUCTING A SURVEY AND ASKS YOU TO SHOW HIM YOUR BOOBS, DO NOT SHOW HIM YOUR BOOBS. THIS IS A SCAM, HE ONLY WANTS TO SEE YOUR BOOBS.

I wish I’d gotten this yesterday. I feel so cheap!

Signed,

The Blonde

Three blondes die in a car crash

Three blondes die in a car crash while trying to jump the Grand Canyon. They are met at the Pearly Gates of Heaven by St. Peter. He tells them that they can enter the gates if they can answer one simple question.

St. Peter asks the first Blonde, "What is Easter?" The Blonde replies, "Oh, that’s easy!" It’s the holiday in November when everyone gets together, eats turkey and are thankful …" "Wrong! You must go to HELL." replies St. Peter. He proceeds to ask the second Blonde the same question, "What is Easter?"

The second Blonde replies, "Easter is the holiday in December when we put up a nice tree, exchange presents and celebrate the birth of Jesus." St. Peter looks at the second Blonde, bangs his head in disgust on the Pearly Gates and tells her that she’s wrong and must go to HELL. He then peers over his glasses at the third Blonde and asks, "What is Easter?"

The third Blonde smiles confidently and looks St. Peter in the eyes, "I know what Easter is." "Oh really?" says St. Peter.

"Easter is the Christian holiday that coincides with the Jewish celebration of Passover. Jesus and his disciples were eating at the last supper and Jesus was later deceived and turned over to the Romans by one of his disciples. The Romans took him to be crucified and he was made to wear a crown of thorns, and was hung on a cross with nails through his hands. He was buried in a nearby cave which was sealed off by a large boulder." St. Peter smiles broadly with delight. She continues, "Every year, the boulder is moved aside so that Jesus can come out. If he sees his shadow, there will be 6 more weeks of winter."

She was so blond that she……..

1. Took her new scarf back to the store because it was too tight.

2. Couldn’t learn to water ski because she couldn’t find a lake with a slope.

3. Can’t work in a pharmacy because the bottles won’t fit into the typewriter.

4. Got excited because she finished a jigsaw puzzle in 6 months and the box said "2 to 4 years".

5. Was trapped on an escalator for hours when the power went out.

6. Couldn’t call 911 because there was no 11 on any phone button.

7. When asked what the capital of California was, answered "C."

8. Burnt her nose bobbing for french fries.

9. Baked a turkey for 3 days because the package said 1 hour per pound and she weighed 125.

10. Can’t make Kool-Aid because 8 cups of water won’t fit into those little packets.

11. Hates M&M’s because they are so hard to peel.

12. Got hurt raking leaves; fell out of the tree.

13. Changes the baby’s diaper only once a month because the label said "good up to 20 pounds."

14. After losing in a breaststroke swimming competition, complained that the other swimmers were using their arms.

Cruise Special

A blonde walks by a travel agency and notices a sign in the window:

"Cruise Special — $99!"

She goes inside, lays her money on the counter and says, "I’d like the $99 cruise special, please."

The agent grabs her, drags her into the back room, ties her to a large inner tube, then drags her out the back door and downhill to the river, where he pushes her in and sends her floating.

A second blonde comes by a few minutes later, sees the sign, goes inside, lays her money on the counter, and asks for the $99 special. She too is tied to an inner tube and sent floating down the river. Drifting into stronger current, she eventually catches up with the first blonde.

They float side by side for a while before the first blonde asks, "Do they serve refreshments on this cruise?"

The second blonde replies, "They didn’t last year…"

Blind man’s blonde joke

A blind man finds his way to a barstool and orders a drink. After sitting there for a while, he yells to the Bartender, "Hey, you wanna hear a blonde joke?" The bar immediately falls absolutely quiet. In a very deep, husky voice, the woman next to him says, "Before you tell that joke, sir, I think it is only fair, given that you are blind, that you should know five things: 1 – The bartender is a blonde girl. 2 – The bouncer is a blonde girl. 3 – I’m a 6 feet tall, 180-pound blonde woman with a black belt in karate. 4 – The woman sitting next to me is blonde and is a Professional weightlifter. 5 – The lady to your right is a blonde and is a professional wrestler. Now think about it seriously, Mister. Do you really wanna tell that joke?" The blind man thinks for a second, shakes his head, and declares, "Nah….. Not if I’m gonna have to explain it five times."

Lawyer jokes

Courtroom Capers

  Mary Louise Gilman, editor of the National Shorthand Reporter, has collected many hilarious courtroom bloopers in two books (Humor in the Court (1977) and More Humor in the Court).

Q: …any suggestions as to what prevented this from being a murder trial instead of an attempted murder trial?

A: The victim lived.

Q: Are you sexually active?

A: No, I just lie there.

Q: Are you qualified to give a urine sample?

A: Yes, I have been since early childhood.

Q: The truth of the matter is that you were not an unbiased, objective witness, isn’t it? You too were shot in the fracas?

A: No, sir. I was shot midway between the fracas and the naval.

Q: What is the meaning of sperm being present?

A: It indicates intercourse.

Q: Male sperm?

A. That is the only kind I know.

Q: (Showing man picture.) That’s you?

A: Yes, sir.

Q: And you were present when the picture was taken, right?

Q: Was that the same nose you broke as a child?

A: I have only one, you know.

Q: What is your relationship with the plaintiff?

A: She is my daughter.

Q: Was she your daughter on February 13, 1979?

Q: Now, you have investigated other murders, have you not, where there was a victim?

Q: …and what did he do then?

A: He came home, and next morning he was dead.

Q: So when he woke up the next morning he was dead?

Q: Did you tell your lawyer that your husband had offered you indignities?

A: He didn’t offer me nothing; he just said I could have the furniture.

Q: So, after the anesthesia, when you came out of it, what did you observe with respect to your scalp?

A: I didn’t see my scalp the whole time I was in the hospital.

Q: It was covered?

A: Yes, bandaged.

Q: Then, later on.. what did you see?

A: I had a skin graft. My whole buttocks and leg were removed and put on top of my head.

Q: Could you see him from where you were standing?

A: I could see his head.

Q: And where was his head?

A: Just above his shoulders.

Q: Do you drink when you’re on duty?

A: I don’t drink when I’m on duty, unless I come on duty drunk.

Q. What is your brother-in-law’s name?

A. Borofkin.

Q. What’s his first name?

A. I can’t remember.

Q. He’s been your brother-in-law for years, and you can’t remember his first name?

A. No. I tell you I’m too excited. (Rising from the witness chair and pointing to Mr. Borofkin.) Nathan, for God’s sake, tell them your first name!

Q. Did you ever stay all night with this man in New York?

A. I refuse to answer that question.

Q. Did you ever stay all night with this man in Chicago?

A. I refuse to answer that question.

Q. Did you ever stay all night with this man in Miami?

A. No.

Q. Now, Mrs. Johnson, how was your first marriage terminated?

A: By death.

Q. And by whose death was it terminated?

Q: Doctor, did you say he was shot in the woods?

A. No, I said he was shot in the lumbar region.

Q. What is your name?

A. Ernestine McDowell.

Q. And what is your marital status?

A. Fair.

Q. Are you married?

A. No, I’m divorced.

Q. And what did your husband do before you divorced him?

A. A lot of things I didn’t know about.

Q: And who is this person you are speaking of?

A. My ex-widow said it.

Q: How did you happen to go to Dr. Cherney?

A. Well, a gal down the road had had several of her children by Dr. Cherney, and said he was really good.

Q: Do you know how far pregnant you are right now?

A. I will be three months November 8th.

Q. Apparently then, the date of conception was August 8th?

A. Yes.

Q. What were you and your husband doing at that time?

Q: So, you are unconscious, and they pulled you from the bucket. What happened then?

A: Mr. Stewart gave me artificial insemination. You know, mouth to mouth.

Q: Doctor, as a result of your examination of the plaintiff, is the young lady pregnant?

A: The young lady is pregnant, but not as a result of my examination.

Q. Mrs. Smith, do you believe that you are emotionally unstable?

A: I should be.

Q: How many times have you committed suicide?

A. Four times.

Q: Doctor, how many autopsies have you performed on dead people?

A. All my autopsies have been performed on dead people.

Q: Were you aquatinted with the deceased?

A: Yes, sir.

Q. Before or after he died?

Q. Officer, what led you to believe the defendant was under the influence?

A. Because he was argumentary and he couldn’t pronunciate his words.

Q: What happened then?

A. He told me, he says, "I have to kill you because you can identify me."

Q. Did he kill you?

A. No.

Q. Mrs. Jones, is your appearance this morning pursuant to a deposition notice which I sent to your attorney?

A. No. This is how I dress when I go to work. The Court: Now, as we begin, I must ask you to banish all present information and prejudice from your minds, if you have any.

Q: Did he pick the dog up by the ears?

A. No.

Q. What was he doing with the dog’s ears?

A. Picking them up in the air.

Q. Where was the dog at this time?

A. Attached to the ears.

Q: How was your first marriage terminated?

A: By death.

Q: And by whose death was it terminated?

Q: Can you describe the individual?

A: He was about medium height and had a beard.

Q: Was this a male, or a female?

Q. When he went, had you gone and had she, if she wanted to and were able, for the time being excluding all the restraints on her not to go, gone also, would he have brought you, meaning you and she, with him to the station?

Mr. Brooks: Objection. That question should be taken out and shot.

Q. And lastly, Gary, all your responses must be oral, O.K.? What school do you go to?

A: Oral.

Q: How old are you?

A. Oral.

Q: Now doctor, isn’t it true that when a person dies in his sleep, in most cases he just passes quietly away and doesn’t know anything about it until the next morning?

Q: Was it you or your brother who was killed in the war?

Q: The youngest son, the 20 year old, how old is he?

Q: Were you alone or by yourself?

Q: How long have you been a French Canadian?

Q: Do you have any children or anything of that kind?

Q: Were you present in court this morning when you were sworn in?

Q: So you were gone until you returned?

Q: She had three children, right?

A: Yes.

Q: How many were boys?

A: None.

Q: Were there girls?

Q: You don’t know what it was, and you don’t know what it looked like, but can you describe it?

Q: You say that the stairs went down to the basement?

A: Yes.

Q: And these stairs, did they go up also?

Q: Do you recall approximately the time that you examined the body of Mr. Edington at the Rose Chapel?

A: It was in the evening. The autopsy started about 8:30 p.m.

Q: And Mr. Edington was dead at the time, is that correct?

A: No, he was sitting on the table wondering why I was doing an autopsy.

Q: Have you lived in this town all your life?

A: Not yet.

Q. Doctor, before you performed the autopsy, did you check for a pulse?

A. No.

Q. Did you check for blood pressure?

A. No.

Q. Did you check for breathing?

A. No.

Q. So, then is it possible that the patient was alive when you began the autopsy?

A. No.

Q. How can you be so sure, Doctor?

A. Because his brain was sitting on my desk in a jar.

Q. But could the patient still have been alive, nevertheless?

A. It is possible that he could have been alive and practicing law somewhere.

Q: What is your date of birth?

A: July fifteenth.

Q: What year?

A: Every year.

Q: What gear were you in at the moment of the impact?

A: Gucci sweats and Reeboks.

Q: This myasthenia gravis—does it affect your memory at all?

A: Yes.

Q: And in what ways does it affect your memory?

A: I forget.

Q: You forget. Can you give us an example of something that you’ve forgotten?

Q: How old is your son—the one living with you.

A: Thirty-eight or thirty-five, I can’t remember which.

Q: How long has he lived with you?

A: Forty-five years.

Q: What was the first thing your husband said to you when he woke that morning?

A: He said, "Where am I, Cathy?"

Q: And why did that upset you?

A: My name is Susan.

Q: And where was the location of the accident?

A: Approximately milepost 499.

Q: And where is milepost 499?

A: Probably between milepost 498 and 500.

Q: Sir, what is your IQ?

A: Well, I can see pretty well, I think.

Q: Did you blow your horn or anything?

A: After the accident?

Q: Before the accident.

A: Sure, I played for ten years. I even went to school for it.

Q: Do you know if your daughter has ever been involved in the voodoo or occult?

A: We both do.

Q: Voodoo?

A: We do.

Q: You do?

A: Yes, voodoo.

Q: Trooper, when you stopped the defendant, were your red and blue lights flashing?

A: Yes.

Q: Did the defendant say anything when she got out of her car?

A: Yes, sir.

Q: What did she say?

A: What disco am I at?

Professionals at work…

  A doctor, a lawyer, and an architect were arguing about who had the smartest dog. They decided to settle the issue by getting all the dogs together and seeing whose could perform the most impressive feat. "Okay, Rover," ordered the architect, and Rover trotted over to a table and in four minutes constructed a complete scale model of a Cathedral out of toothpicks.

  The architect slipped Rover a cookie, and everyone agreed that it was a pretty impressive performance. "Hit it, Spot," commanded the doctor. Spot lost no time in performing an emergency Caesarian on a cow. Three minutes later the proud mother of a healthy little heifer was all sewed up and doing fine. Not bad, conceded the onlookers, and Spot got a cookie from the doctor.

  "Your turn, Fella," said the lawyer. Over went Fella, humped the other two dogs, took their cookies, and went out to lunch.

Texas Lawyer

  A lawyer who works in Texas gets a call about an emergency which requires him to immediately fly out of the state for a short period of time. He has no time to pack, so he calls home to tell his wife he is going. The maid answers the call, but is quite hesitant about putting his wife on the phone. After quite a bit of interrogation, she admits that the wife is upstairs in bed with the mailman! The lawyer is furious, and wants to rush right home, but of course there is this emergency he must take care of.

  So instead, he tells the maid to go get the gun from the desk drawer and kill both his wife and the mailman. She protests! The lawyer explains that under Texas law it is legal to kill your adulterous wife and her lover. Using his silver tongue, he finally convinces her to do it. She puts down the phone, and soon the lawyer hears the sound of two gun shots, a scream, some loud thumps, and finally, two splashes. The maid comes back to the phone.

  The lawyer asks, "Did you kill them?"
  "Yes," she replies.

  The lawyer questions her again, "What did you do with the bodies?"
  "I threw them in the pool," she responds.

  There is a brief pause from the lawyer. He asks her, "Did you say the pool?"
  "Yes! I threw them in the pool!" she says.

  "Uh, is this 512-8234?"

Lawyer and a blonde

  A lawyer and a blonde are sitting next to each other on a long flight from LA to NY. The lawyer leans over to her and asks if she would like to play a fun game. The blonde just wants to take a nap, so she politely declines and rolls over to the window to catch a few winks.

  The lawyer persists and explains that the game is really easy and a lot of fun. He explains "I ask you a question, and if you don’t know the answer, you pay me $5, and vice-versa." Again, she politely declines and tries to get some sleep.

  The lawyer, now somewhat agitated, says, "Okay, if you don’t know the answer you pay me $5, and if I don’t know the answer, I will pay you $50!" figuring that since she is a blonde that he will easily win the match. This catches the blonde’s attention and, figuring that there will be no end to this torment unless she plays, agrees to the game. The lawyer asks the first question. "What’s the distance from the Earth to the moon?" The blonde doesn’t say a word, reaches in to her purse, pulls out a five-dollar bill and hands it to the lawyer.

  Now, it’s the blonde’s turn. She asks the lawyer: "What goes up a hill with three legs, and comes down with four?" The lawyer looks at her with a puzzled look. He takes out his laptop computer and searches all his references. He taps into the Airphone with his modem and searches the Net and the Library of Congress. Frustrated, he sends E-mails to all his coworkers and friends he knows. All to no avail. After over an hour, he wakes the blonde and hands her $50. The blonde politely takes the $50 and turns away to get back to sleep.

  The lawyer, who is more than a little miffed, wakes the blonde and asks, "Well, so what IS the answer!?" Without a word, the blonde reaches into her purse, hands the lawyer $5, and goes back to sleep.

From an actual trial in the UK

  A young woman who was several months pregnant boarded a bus. When she noticed a young man smiling at her she began feeling humiliated on account of her condition. She changed her seat and he seemed more amused. She moved again and then on her fourth move he burst out laughing. She had him arrested.

  When the case came before the court, the young man was asked why he acted in such a manner. His reply was:

  When the lady boarded the bus I couldn’t help noticing she was pregnant. She sat under an advertisement which read "Coming Soon: The Gold Dust Twins", then she moved under one that read "Sloans Liniments remove swelling." I was even more amused when she sat under a shaving advertisement which read "William’s Stick Did The Trick". Then I could not control myself any longer when on the fourth move she sat under an advertisement which read "Dunlop Rubber would have prevented this accident."
  The case was dismissed.

Lawyer’s Honeymoon

  A lawyer got married to a woman who had previously been married 12 times. On their wedding night, they settled into the bridal suite at their hotel and the bride said to her new groom, "Please, promise to be gentle. I am still a virgin."
  This puzzled the groom, since after 12 marriages, he thought that at least one of her husbands would have been able to perform. He asked his new bride to explain the phenomenon.

  She responded: "My first husband was a Sales Representative who spent our entire marriage telling me, in grandiose terms, ‘It’s gonna be great!’

  My second husband was from Software Services; he was never quite sure how it was supposed to function, but he said he would send me documentation.

  My third husband was from Field Services and constantly said that everything was diagnostically OK, but he just couldn’t get the system up.

  My fourth husband was from Educational Services, and he simply said, ‘Those who can, do; those who can’t, teach.’

  My fifth husband was from the Telemarketing Department and said that he had the orders, but he wasn’t quite sure when he was going to be able to deliver.

  My sixth husband was an Engineer. He told me that he understood the basic process but needed three years to research, implement, and design a new state-of-the-art method.

  My seventh husband was from Finance and Administration. His comments were that he knew how, but he just wasn’t sure whether it was his job.

  My eighth husband was from Standards and Regulations and told me that he was up to the standards but that regulations said nothing about how to do it.

  My ninth husband was a Marketing Manager. He said, ‘I know I have the product. I’m just not sure how to position it.’

  My tenth husband was a psychiatrist, and all he ever wanted to do was talk about it.

  My eleventh husband was a gynecologist, and all he ever wanted to do was look at it.

  My twelfth husband was a stamp collector, and all he ever wanted to do was … God I miss him!

  So now I have married a lawyer, so I know I’m going to get screwed."

Parrots

  A man goes into a pet shop to buy a parrot. The shop owner points to three identical-looking parrots on a perch and says, "The parrot on the left costs $500."

  "Why does the parrot cost so much?" asks the customer.

  The owner says "Well, the parrot knows how to do legal research."

  The customer then asks about the next parrot, to be told that this one costs $1,000 because it can do everything the other parrot can do plus it knows how to write a brief that will win any case.

  Naturally, the increasingly startled customer asks about the third parrot, to be told that it costs $4,000. Needless to say, this begs the question, "What can it do?"
  To which the owner replies, "To be honest, I’ve never seen him do a darn thing, but the other two call him Senior Partner."

Guess Who?

  A guy walks into a post office one day to see a middle-aged, balding man standing at the counter methodically placing "Love" stamps on bright pink envelopes with hearts all over them. He then takes out a perfume bottle and starts spraying scent all over them.

  His curiosity getting the better of him, he goes up to the balding man and asks him what he is doing.

  The man says "I’m sending out 1,000 Valentine cards signed, ‘Guess who?’"

  "But why?" asks the man.

  "I’m a divorce lawyer," the man replies.

More

  • What do lawyers use for birth control?

      Their personalities.
  • What is the difference between a tick and a lawyer?

      A tick falls off of you when you die.
  • Why does the law society prohibit sex between lawyers and their clients?

      To prevent clients from being billed twice for what is essentially the same service.
  • What do you have when 100 lawyers are buried up to their neck in sand?

      Not enough sand.
  • What’s the difference between a dead skunk in the road and a dead lawyer in the middle of the road?

      There are skid marks in front of the skunk.
  • What is black and brown and looks good on a lawyer?

      A Doberman.
  • What is black and brown, with blood all over him, but looks really good?

      A Doberman attacking a lawyer.
  • Why are lawyers like nuclear weapons?

      If one side has one, the other side has to get one. Once launched, they cannot be recalled. When they land, they screw up everything forever.
  • What do lawyers and sperm have in common?

      One in 3,000,000 has a chance of becoming a human being.
  • Did you hear that the Post Office just recalled their latest stamps?

      They had pictures of lawyers on them …and people couldn’t figure

      out which side to spit on.
  • Lawyer’s creed:

      A man is innocent until proven broke.
  • What’s the difference between a female lawyer and a pit bull?

      Lipstick.
  • What do you call 20 lawyers skydiving from an airplane?

      Skeet.
  • What do you get when you cross a bad politician with a crooked  lawyer?

      Chelsea Clinton
  • If you see a lawyer on a bicycle, why should you swerve to avoid hitting him?

      It might be your bicycle.
  • Santa Claus, the tooth fairy, an honest lawyer and an old drunk are  walking down the street together when they simultaneously spot a  hundred dollar bill. Who gets it?

      The old drunk, of course; the other three are mythical creatures.
  • It was so cold last winter … (How cold was it?)

      … I saw a lawyer with his hands in his own pockets.
  • A man walked into a lawyer’s office and inquired about the lawyer’s  rates.

      "$50.00 for three questions", replied the lawyer.

      "Isn’t that awfully steep?" asked the man.

      "Yes," the lawyer replied, "and what was your third question?"
  • You’re trapped in a room with a tiger, a rattlesnake and a lawyer.  You have a gun with two bullets. What should you do?

      You shoot the lawyer. Twice.
  • Do you know what happens when a lawyer takes Viagra?

      He gets taller.

Wall between heaven and hell

  St. Peter and Satan were talking one day discussing who had made the big hole in the wall between heaven and hell. Satan swore that he did not know anything about it. St. Peter said that one of Satan’s people must have done it, as surely no one from heaven would be trying to get into hell.

St. Peter told Satan that Satan should pay for the repair.

  Satan said, "Wait a minute. You’re jumping to conclusions here. I will pay for half, you can pay for half."
St. Peter said, "That’s not good enough. I will see you in court."
Satan said, "Yeah, right. . .. Where are you going to get an attorney?"

Lawyer’s Tombstone

  A woman and her little girl were visiting the grave of the little girl’s grandmother. On their way through the cemetery back to the car, the little girl asked, "Mommy, do they ever bury two people in the same grave?" 

  "Of course not, dear," replied the mother, "Why would you think that?" 

  "The tombstone back there said ‘Here lies a lawyer and an honest man.’"

Two attorneys and an accountant

  Two attorneys boarded a flight out of Seattle. One sat in the window seat, the other sat in the middle seat. Just before take-off, an accountant got on and took the aisle seat next to the two attorneys. The accountant kicked off his shoes, wiggled his toes and was settling in when the attorney in the window seat said, "I think I will get up and get a coke."

  "No problem," said the accountant. "I’ll get it for you."

  While he was gone, one of the attorneys picked up one of the accountant’s shoes and spat in it. When the accountant returned with the coke the other attorney said, "that looks good, I think I’ll have one too."

  Again, the accountant obligingly went to fetch the coke. While he was gone, the other attorney picked up the other shoe and spat in it. The accountant returned and they all sat back and enjoyed the flight.

  As the plane was landing, the accountant slipped his feet into his shoes and knew immediately what had happened. "How long must this go on?" asked the accountant. "This fighting between our professions? This hatred? This animosity? This spitting in shoes and p*ssing in cokes?"

Ice fishing

Saturday morning I got up early, put on my long johns, dressed quietly, made my lunch, grabbed the dog, slipped quietly into the garage to hook the
boat up to the truck, and proceeded to back out into a torrential downpour.

There was snow mixed with the rain and the wind was blowing 50 mph. I pulled back into the garage, turned on the radio, and discovered that the weather would be bad throughout the day.

I went back into the house, quietly undressed, and slipped back into bed. There I cuddled up to my wife’s back, now with a different anticipation, and whispered, “The weather out there is terrible.”

She sleepily replied, “Can you believe my stupid husband is out fishing in that?”

Stupid sayings

  • Save the whales. Collect the whole set.
  • A day without sunshine is like, night.
  • On the other hand, you have different fingers.
  • 42.7 percent of all statistics are made up on the spot.
  • 99 percent of politicians give the rest a bad name.
  • I feel like I’m diagonally parked in a parallel universe.
  • HONK if you love peace and quiet.
  • Remember, half the people you know are below average.
  • He who laughs last thinks slowest.
  • Depression is merely anger without enthusiasm.
  • The early bird may get the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese.
  • I drive way too fast to worry about cholesterol.
  • Support bacteria. They’re the only culture some people have.
  • Monday is an awful way to spend 1/7 of your week.
  • A clear conscience is usually the sign of a bad memory.
  • Change is inevitable, except from vending machines.
  • Get a new car for your spouse. It’ll be a great trade!
  • Plan to be spontaneous tomorrow.
  • Always try to be modest, and be proud of it!
  • If you think nobody cares, try missing a couple of payments.
  • How many of you believe in telekinesis? Raise my hand…
  • OK, so what’s the speed of dark?
  • How do you tell when you’re out of invisible ink?
  • If everything seems to be going well, you have obviously overlooked
    something.

  • When everything is coming your way, you’re in the wrong lane.
  • Hard work pays off in the future. Laziness pays off now.
  • Everyone has a photographic memory. Some just don’t have film.
  • If Barbie is so popular, why do you have to buy her friends?
  • Eagles may soar, but weasels don’t get sucked into jet engines.
  • What happens if you get scared half to death twice?
  • I used to have an open mind but my brains kept falling out.
  • I couldn’t repair your brakes, so I made your horn louder.
  • Why do psychics have to ask you for your name?
  • A day at the races

    [from 1994]

    The first Saturday in May. What does this date mean to you? Probably nothing, except that Spring has finally arrived, unless you live in California where it's been Spring already for two months or more — real Spring, not calendar Spring.

    But ask any horse racing buff and they will tell you without hesitation the first Saturday in May is the day of the Kentucky Derby! Well, this story isn't about the Kentucky Derby or the first Saturday in May.

    This is about the Breeder's Cup and the first Saturday in November.

    It was on this day that I ventured north from Nashville to Louisville, Kentucky, and Churchill Downs; about an hour and half drive. I had never been to Churchill Downs, so I followed the map — always a good idea — and found the place, no problem.

    You know, the site of the Kentucky Derby since 1875? Twin spires? The first race of the Triple Crown? The Mecca of Horse Racing?

    Enough of the melodrama. Fact is, it was just plain cool to be there.

    I prowled the neighborhood, looking for a parking lot, but there didn't seem to be one. So, I ended up paying $10 to park on some guy's front lawn. The price was high, but it seemed to be the going rate. At least it was just a few yards from the track entrance.

    At the gate, they wanted $15. Fifteen dollars just to get in! I said to the gatekeeper, “I just want into the infield, not the Clubhouse!” He shrugged and said it was $15 no matter which entrance I took. So I forked over the $15.

    As I started downward into the tunnel that takes you under the track and into the infield, a female voice from behind said, “A little steep isn't it?”

    I turned and looked at her as if she was an idiot. It was a slight downgrade, not steep at all. “Huh?” I said.

    “Fifteen bucks just to get in,” she said. “It's a little steep.” And she smiled.

    She looked to be somewhere in her mid to late twenties. Thick, long light-brown hair. A little overweight, though it was hard to tell with the raincoat and baggy pants she wore. She was fairly pretty, and seemed to be alone.

    “Oh, yeah,” I agreed. “Let's just hope we can win it back at the windows.”

    “Got any hot tips?” she asked.

    “Not really. You?”

    “'Fraid not,” she pouted.

    If I had any hot tips, I wouldn't have shared them with her, anyway. What good is a hot tip if you go around telling everyone about it? Her boyfriend then came trotting up from behind and, with a quick glower in my direction, whisked her away from me.

    “Good luck,” she said over her shoulder as her boyfriend tugged at her to hurry up.

    I stopped at the first booth in the infield and bought a program. It cost $2.50, and I was already down $27.50 and hadn't even placed a bet! Oh well, that's the price of entertainment. That's what I told myself, anyway.

    In case you don't know, the Breeder's Cup consists of seven races. It's basically the end-of-the-year championship day of thoroughbred horse racing, and it attracts the best horses from all over the world. They offer gobs of money, and that tends to entice the best horses that racing has to offer.

    Each race has a minimum “purse” of $1 million. The Breeder's Cup Turf race offers $2 million, and the Classic offers $3 million. The winner doesn't get all that. They “only” get 60%, with the rest divvied up amongst the next four finishers.

    Anyway, on the first race, the Sprint, I put a few bucks down on some horse whose name doesn't really matter. Ten minutes later, I was tearing up my losing ticket. I skipped the next race, the Juvenile Fillies race, since I'd never heard of any of the horses entered.

    The third race was The Mile, and since I had skipped the previous race, I put a little extra on this one. By the end of the race, I was tearing up a couple more losing tickets. It was not a good beginning. And it's important to get off to a good start in gambling, otherwise you quickly degenerate into desperation. And, as any degenerate, desperate bettor can tell you, desperation is not a good thing.

    Following The Mile, came the Distaff, a race strictly for fillies and mares. Again, I lost. [This is getting repetitive, isn't it?] After the Distaff was the Juvenile (for 2-year-old colts and geldings). The crowd's betting favorite, the only horse I'd ever heard of—but whose name escapes me now—had odds of 3-5 or something. I figured he'd win, but at 3-5 odds it wasn't worth it. So I bet on some other horse based on his name and the jockey. I lost again.

    By this time, I had lost $60 of my personally-allotted $100 for the day—not counting the above-mentioned initial expenses—and I was getting annoyed. I was paying $4 per beer—Miller Lite, which I generally can't stand—and $4 for a crappy little cheeseburger that even McDonald’s would be ashamed of. It was time to get down to business.

    It was then that I ran into that girl from the tunnel. She was standing about twenty yards from one of the betting windows, watching the replay of the previous race on the big-screen t.v.

    “Got any hot tips?” I asked as I approached her.

    “Oh, hi,” she said as if surprised to see me, though I knew she wasn't. I had seen her glancing in my direction, and that's why I felt comfortable in approaching her. “Well, my boyfriend says Lure is a sure thing,” she offered.

    “Lure, huh?” I said. “Yeah, he's won it the past two years.” I didn't think much of Lure's chances this year, but I figured I would let her boyfriend blow his money on him.

    Her boyfriend showed up a few seconds later. And, again, he glowered at me before pulling the girl along after him. I hadn't noticed it the first time I saw him, but this time I saw the words “DAIWA” stenciled into the front of his black baseball cap. Daiwa is a major manufacturer of fishing reels, which explained why he was so “hot” on Lure.

    The girl smiled at me over her shoulder, but said nothing as her boyfriend dragged her off. Like a caveman, it seemed to me. I shrugged my shoulders. Some women like cavemen.

    Flattered and inspired by this girl's flirtations, I decided to do something bold. No, it didn't involve her. What I decided was to just blow the rest of my bankroll on the next race, the Breeder's Cup Turf, and then simply watch the following and final race as a pure, non-betting fan of the Sport of Kings, i.e., a destitute bum hanging out at the track. Women do tend to inspire me to do stupid things.

    There were several quality horses in this race; the above-mentioned Lure amongst them. But they were all quality horses. These were the best horses in the world on grass. The betting favorite, a horse named Missionary Ridge, was giving odds of even money. I didn't like his name or his odds, but he seemed like a pretty sure bet, and I was sick of losing. So, I figured, why not bet on him? At least I'll get my money back and have the satisfaction of betting on at least one winner for the day. I put $20 to win on him.

    With the remaining $20 of my “bankroll” I played a couple of hunches. That girl's boyfriend was betting on Lure at least in part because he liked fishing. Well, I like hockey. And also entered in this race was a horse named Tikkanen, presumably named after the hockey star, Esse Tikkanen. He appeared to be a good horse, on paper anyway. His last race was a win in a major grass stakes race. And he was giving 16-1 odds. Never again would I get such good odds on such a good horse, so I put $10 on his nose. The other $10, I put on some foreign horse who had won the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe, France's biggest race, earlier in the year.

    Well, guess what? My hunch bet, Tikkanen, won and I collected $160! With one bet, I had just paid for all prior expenses and lost bets, and then some. I was jazzed, but I was careful not to show it. There are people who hang out at racetracks looking for big winners to mug in the bathroom or parking lot. A hundred and sixty bucks is not exactly “big money,” but they (these imaginary muggers) didn't know I had only bet $10. For all they knew, I'd bet $1,000 and would be collecting $16,000. You can never be too careful when they are watching. I sort of hoped I would run into that girl again, just so I could gloat and make her boyfriend look stupid. But I didn't see her.

    For the seventh and final race, the Breeder's Cup Classic, I decided to follow the same thinking I had followed on the previous race. I put $20 to win on my “intellectually-calculated best bet.” And then, on another hunch, I put $5 to win on a horse called Concern. I don't know what it was about this horse Concern that told me to bet on him. His name just sort of stuck out in my mind for some reason.

    And yes, you guessed it. Concern won and paid $40! I was a happy camper all of a sudden. Again, I looked around for that girl, but she was nowhere to be seen. She was probably huddled with her boyfriend somewhere commiserating over their losses.

    As I drove home to Nashville, I stopped for gas at a Chevron station somewhere in Kentucky. In Kentucky they have Lotto and Power Ball. Feeling lucky, I spent $5 on a “quick-pick” Power Ball ticket. The jackpot at the time was $10 million. Small by Lotto standards, but still, I could always use $10 million.

    And, guess what? I didn't win. Oh well. At least I was still $150 ahead of the game, all told. Plus, I had fun, and had spent a day at Churchill Downs, the Mecca of horse racing.

    I wonder whatever happened to that girl.

    All of My Novels

    Portugal to Hungary

    How I Spent My Summer Vacations (Portugal to Hungary)


    [from 1992]

    Portugal/Azores

    On Sunday, July 12th, I woke up … but while getting ready for the flight to Portugal the next morning, I never went back to sleep. In Lisboa, my 2nd cousin Teresa Rocha Homem and her husband Antonio Melo met me at the airport. They served as chauffeurs, tour guides and translators. Teresa’s father, Silvano Rocha Homem, is Dad’s 1st cousin. Sometimes staying at their apartment in Lisboa and sometimes at Silvano’s “grand casa” in Cartaxo (45 min. away in the countryside), they treated me to all the sights possible in the 5 days I spent there. Although Lisboa is full of history, crowded cities with bad traffic problems have never interested me. The best sights were found nearby at “Sintra” where a castle dominates a mountaintop surrounded by rich and beautiful homes and great views. A drive along the coast revealed quaint villages and wonderful cliffs similar to the California coast south of Big Sur.

    The topless beaches were also a nice surprise! Don’t let anyone ever tell you that the Portuguese girls aren’t pretty. Portugal has its share of beauties. One of them is Teresa’s sister, Ana Rocha Homem. Ana had modeled at one time, but quit because of the constant concern with her looks.

    I met another sister, Cristina Rocha Homem, a lawyer and considered the brightest of the family and very pretty, to boot. Finally there was Luis Rocha Homem, the only boy and a very nice person. He is the one that will eventually run the very successful family winery business. I didn’t meet the oldest girl, Isabel. All five of Silvano’s children are married. Ana and Cristina have husbands that are direct descendants of some of Portugal’s oldest noble families. All five also have college degrees; almost mandatory for a person to be successful there unlike in the U.S. Silvano de Abreu Cardoso Rocha Homem, as mentioned, has a really nice house in the small town of Cartaxo. He is semi-retired from his practice as a family doctor, but still works 2 or 3 days a week at home where he has his office. Silvano is a wonderful host. Because of his lack of practice with English he spoke mostly Portuguese with only a few words of English, although at one time he spoke English well. The overall impression one gets by a visit to his home is that you are in the company of a very rich and well respected man who lives in a place that could be described as a hotel with many servants and a music room and dining room fit for a duke.

    One can only admire the close relationship of his family who travel every weekend to Cartaxo to visit. The huge house and the winery business come from Silvano’s wife’s side of the family who has unfortunately suffered many strokes and is now practically helpless.

    My last day there was on Sunday, July 19th, and I was treated to an extravagant midday meal before flying to the island of Terceira in the Azores where the Rocha Homem (Holmes) family originates from.

    There to meet me was Dad’s other 1st cousin, Jose Leal Armas, one of the most important men of the island. Jose is a thoroughly likeable guy. Real down-to-Earth.

    Staying at Jose’s modest house and sleeping on a antique bed valued at more than $6,000 US dollars, I was shown the way to the Archives of Angra where I spent 50% of my time digging through old records of the island. If it weren’t for the fact that the archive closed at 5pm, I would have missed seeing most of the sights a normal tourist would see.

    Angra is more than 500 years old and is very interesting to see, especially if one’s own family played a part in it’s history. Manoel Joaquim Leal da Roza came here as a rich man from Chile and established the first pawn shop, “Prego,” of the island. This building and several other family homes were photographed. Seeing these tend to bring to life the history of one’s family.

    Another benefit from genealogy (besides implementing an “adopt-a-ghost” program on Halloween) is discovering living relatives previously unknown. (As if we don’t have enough already!) Such was the case when I and Jose went to the home of Francisco da Rocha Homem, a farmer in Angra. Jose knew him and called him “cousin” without knowing how they were related. I revealed that they both shared the same great-great-grandfather, Manoel da Rocha Homem born in 1786. So this man is a 3rd cousin to Dad and Jose.

    The research done in Angra, which is not even close to being complete, has revealed the oldest member of the Rocha Homem line to be a Joao (John) Bras born circa 1660. He didn’t use the Rocha name, so this is yet another puzzle to solve.

    The final portion of my trip was to the island of Pico where the Silveira family (Grandma’s parents) comes from. This was the prettiest of the islands visited. Very lush; green plants were everywhere with the dominant mountain soaring 8,000 feet above the sea, from which the island gets its name. São Roque was my major place of interest, where, on Sept. 17th, 1896, Jose Francisco da Silveira and his new wife Emelia Candida Leal left for America. Grandma was born the next year in Sacramento.

    Another village of Pico, Piedade, is where the Leal da Roza family (mentioned above) comes from. With the assistance of the taxi driver hired for the day, I was able to meet a heretofore unknown member of that family, Jose Leal da Rosa, a wine-maker in that village. The connection between our families has not been established yet, but it’s nice to know the name has not died out in its native land.

    Hungary/Slovakia

    Arriving home on Thursday, July 30th at 12:30am, I had 6 days to recover before I was grabbed and thrown onto a plane headed for Budapest, Hungary. Luckily, I was already planning to go there and was fully packed.

    Now being a seasoned traveller (my 3rd trip to Europe in two years), I negotiated for free housing in some girl’s apartment in Budapest for the first 3 nights there. The girl is Klara Szmodits, a cousin of Irene Poutinen (our cousin) who lives in Florida.

    I was soon heading for the countryside of western Hungary where there are beautiful rolling hills and mountains that are a joy to travel through. For a little danger and excitement, I crossed the border into the new Croatian republic to get my passport stamped. To prove this side trip to those inevitable doubters, I got it all on videotape. The trip lasted a whole 10 minutes, but my passport never got stamped – damn! No gun shots were reported.

    Continuing on to Békéscsaba, Hungary to the East, I checked into the Koros Hotel where I stayed last year and where, for $15 a night, one gets a room with a shower and sink but no toilet. I’m becoming a regular there.

    One of the main objectives of this trip was to contact living relatives in the towns of Szarvas and Mezobereny where the Liska family has its roots. Re-establishing contact with friends I met last year proved very valuable. In Mezobereny, where grandma Irene (Liska) Specht was born, my elderly friends secured permission for me to look through all the church record books for relatives (information after 1895 not available on microfilm). So far, the most valuable result of this is a gift from an 82-year-old man of a big picture of Irma Liska (this man’s godmother) who was our grandma’s 1st cousin. He also had more family information since he knew many of our relatives. But, sad to say, this branch of the Liska family has no living descendants.

    In Szarvas, with the help of my friend Andras Liska (no relation) and his girlfriend who works in the mayor’s office, I looked through secret information for more relatives. In addition, the computer gave me the current names and addresses of the family names I was searching for. In this way, I was able to contact many relatives still living in the town where the oldest known Liskas from Slovakia first settled in Hungary after the Turks withdrew in 1700. These families have remained in Szarvas for almost 300 years!

    Among the relatives I met were those with the family name of Pecznik, Brauner, Hlivar and Liska. The 84-year-old man, Gyorgy Hlivar, is the last male with the name and therefore that name in Szarvas will die out. He was particularly happy to meet me and he told me the story of his lands and wealth being confiscated by the communists after WW2. And in the book I am planning in the future, he wanted this fact and his sad life afterwards mentioned. He also told the story of the first Hlivar of Szarvas who was the town’s first magistrate.

    The highlight of the whole trip was the discovery of the last related Liska family in Szarvas. Out of all the many Liskas on the huge family tree I made, only this family still has the name of Liska. Surprisingly, one of them, Janos Liska, had seen my photo in the county newspaper from last year’s trip when I was interviewed and was trying to meet relatives. Janos contacted the newspaper, but for some reason the paper couldn’t give him my address. On the Hungarian “Coronation Day” of King Istvan in 1000 A.D., equivalent to our July 4th, the whole Liska family was gathered for a big meeting where I showed everyone the large Liska family tree and took everyone’s portraits. A parting gift of bootleg “szilva palinka” (plum brandy) was received with promises to return there in the future. These Liskas are 5th cousins to us.

    The closest relative, a 4th cousin, was discovered by accident while I was looking through the Szarvas church record books. A lady talking on the phone was overheard saying her name was Nobik Erzsebet. Hearing this, I perked up and quickly looked through my notes confirming that the Nobik name was a Liska relative. After the phone call, I introduced himself and showed her my notes hoping this lady would have some information. An Irma Liska had married a Sandor Nobik and these were her grandparents! She was astonished and invited me to her home where we had lunch and talked for many hours (in Hungarian, of course). She was also a 4th cousin from the Pecznik name. So, does that make her the equivalent to a 3rd cousin?! Her occupation is the female equivalent to the priest of the Old Evangelical Church in Szarvas. She had much family information and a few old Liska photos which I copied with my video camera.

    With all who met me giving their assurances that they will send photos of any female prospects for my future wife, I finally left Szarvas and headed to Slovakia. Driving on the eastern-most roads possible (within view of Russia), I toured the beautiful hills and valleys of Slovakia. On another whim, I decided to go into Poland where I picked up some teenage Polish hitchhikers returning from camping in Slovakia. After trading for 13,000 Polish zlotys (the equivalent of $1.00) I dropped them off and continued for a few more hours before crossing back over into Slovakia.

    In the tiny village of Molca, Slovakia, I found a possible relative named Ondris Pecnik, who is the town official, and his son, Ondris Pecnik, Jr. Finding a lady who spoke Hungarian, I was able to tell Mr. Pecnik why I was there. This man said that the Pecnik family were landowners of this village ever since 1426 according to the records in the local Banská Bystrica archives (the major city nearby). So, there is a very good chance we can trace this family back that far eventually. After promising to return in the future, I again parted company with new acquaintances and headed back to Budapest for one last day.

    With the assistance of some friends, I, as Director of the Sacramento Hungarian/American Friendship Society, received permission from the Hungarian National Archives to purchase any of the microfilms of the church record books (the primary source for genealogy research); thus opening up many possibilities in the field of Hungarian genealogy to make money.

    During the trip, I decided that in the future (maybe two years from now) I will make an extended visit to Hungary for maybe 3 to 6 months to learn the language well and find a wife. When asked why I want a Hungarian wife, I say because of my interest in Hungarian culture and language and I want any future children to appreciate this heritage as well as the Portuguese and German ancestry. If I married a Portuguese girl, there would be such a dominant percentage of Portuguese that the German and Hungarian ancestry would not likely hold much interest.

    I feel most Americans are afflicted with too many ethnic backgrounds, unlike most Europeans, and I prefer to limit the amount of new ethnic backgrounds. But why not marry a German girl? Well, I haven’t yet met any that were appealing (admitting that I really haven’t met many at all). And the Hungarian women are great cooks!

    A girl named Lucy

    [from 1990]

    This is a story ’bout a girl named Lucy

    Otherwise known as “The Rappin’ Watusi”

    She lays down a beat that gets your toes tappin’

    If your toes get tired, let your fingers do the snappin’

    She says “Hey buddy, don’t you be no square”

    If you can’t find a partner, use a wooden chair”

    Okay, so you’ve heard those words before,

    but she don’t care. She’s the girl next door

    Does that make sense? It just doesn’t matter

    It just doesn’t matter, it just doesn’t matter

    So next time you see this girl, just say

    Sorry I forgot. Happy Birthday, anyway!

    — Billy Bob Joe Jim Holmes

    Eastern Canada

    Roving reporter returns from East

    (September, 1989) — Bill returned from his trip to eastern Canada a few weeks back. He was supposed to seek out and capture “Wild Man” Doug. Remember? Well, he’s back. Bill, that is. When asked to report his findings, however, Bill said, “What? You never said anything about finding anyone!”

    Well, there you have it. Another in-depth report from the Newsletter news team. Fortunately, the Newsletter, predicting such a “report”, sent a private investigator out after Bill. And here is his report:

    DAY 1: Doug meets Bill at Burlington Airport. They greet each other brotherly-like, then leave airport together. It takes them 27 seconds to get from Gate 4 to the airport parking lot, the airport is that big. They spend the night in Doug’s camper in a shopping center parking lot.

    DAY 2: They do a little shopping, then they head north.

    They cross the Canadian-American border (is there any other Canadian border?). Doug’s camper is searched while Doug and Bill are held for questioning. The border guard has trouble believing Doug and Bill do what they do for a living, but finally lets them go with a warning.

    Doug kills bird on highway. He could have swerved, but no. He aimed for it! Then he stopped, turned around, and picked it up while Bill took pictures!

    The murderers drove to the city of Quebec that night and spent most of their time pretending to be innocent tourists. You know, buying shirts, flirting with girls, stuff like that.

    DAY 3: Doug attends the Changing of the Guard at Quebec’s Citadel, while Bill spends his time wandering around the Citadel, apparently trying to find a way of getting in for free. He never does.

    Doug and Bill meet up again and spend the rest of the day looking through gift shops, taking pictures (well, Doug takes pictures, lots of pictures), etc.

    They head east toward New Brunswick and spend the night in the middle of nowhere.

    DAY 4: Doug wakes up feeling sick to his stomach, so Bill drives.

    They go to a national park called Kouchibouguac. Don’t ask me to pronounce it. There’s a beach at this park. Bill wades in a ways then wimps out. Too cold, he says.

    Meanwhile, Doug can be found wandering around the nearby swamps frog-gigging and taking pictures.

    Then they head east to Nova Scotia.

    DAY 5: Doug spends about an hour wandering through a cemetery in Halifax with a shovel and a camera! Bill runs away screaming.

    Found Bill walking around in a daze in an indoor mall.

    Eventually, they leave Halifax and drive to another national park with a weird name — Kejimkujik.

    DAYS 6-8: Lost them when they take off in a canoe in the wilds of Kejimkujik. Kept an eye on their parked truck. It didn’t do anything for three days.

    DAY 9: Found Bill hiking back to the truck without Doug. All he has is his outback hat, his brand-new boots and a canteen (and his clothes, of course). He looks thinner and unshaven, and his boots are dirty.

    He gets into truck and drives away. Meets Doug where he was waiting with the canoe and all the equipment.

    They leave Kejimkujik and drive to the western-most edge of Nova Scotia to a town called Digby.

    Doug drops Bill off and heads north, saying something about heading north to Cape Breton, Nova Scotia.

    Bill catches a ferryboat headed for Saint John, New Brunswick.

    I follow Bill.

    Bill gets off ferryboat at Saint John and catches a cab to a motel for the night.

    DAY 10: Bill spends most of next day wandering around Saint John, apparently waiting for bus to Bangor, Maine to arrive.

    Bus finally arrives at 3:46 p.m. Bill gets on. Bus leaves at 3:59 p.m.

    Bus arrives in Bangor, Maine at 8:34 p.m., local time. Bill was supposed to get off here, but he doesn’t, obviously trying to lose me. He enters bus station and pays additional fare to take him to Boston.

    DAY 11: Bus arrives in Boston at 2:30 a.m., local time. Bill makes a couple phone calls. Finally, catches a cab to Logan Airport.

    Makes a couple more calls at the airport. Tries to sleep on couch in airport. Can’t.

    At exactly 5:45 a.m., he takes his place in line at the ticket counter. Gets his ticket. Wanders around airport some more.

    Then he does something strange. He puts his bags in a locker and starts asking where the control tower is. (If he has a bomb, it’s an awfully small one.)

    He follows the directions to the tower. But when he gets there, he can’t get in. The doors are locked. It’s too early in the morning. He picks his nose and flicks the booger. It just barely misses me.

    He walks back to Gate 34C, buys a paper, waits around, then at exactly 7:31 a.m. he boards United Flight 91 to Los Angeles. From Los Angeles, he catches a connecting flight to Oakland Airport.

    THE END.

    Europe

    Nashville  — June, 1996

    I planned everything in advance. Or so I thought. I bought my round-trip plane ticket three months in advance. I "surfed The Web" and researched whatever I could find regarding my destination cities and countries. I bought renter’s insurance for the apartment, a video camera, a new suit for the wedding. For me, this was serious preparation.

    My friend Charlotte gave me a ride to the airport. My brother Don had offered, but Charlotte really wanted an excuse to get off work, so she won the "honor" of driving me to the airport. I’m sure it was a thrill for her. She gave me all sorts of motherly advice along the way. She would have called it simple advice, but to me it sounded like motherly advice. She’s a good friend, so I let her get away with it.

    After I checked my baggage with the woman at the ticket counter, we hugged good-bye. Charlotte and I, that is. I wanted to hug the ticket woman. She was gorgeous. But something told me she wouldn’t go for it. As Charlotte and I hugged, I wanted to sneak in a kiss, just in case my plane blew up and it was the last chance I had for that sort of thing, but she didn’t let me. I think she and the baggage check woman were conspiring against me. Just a theory. Probably nothing to it. But still, you’ve got to wonder.

    In The Air

    On the flight from Atlanta to Vienna, I sat next to a 6’5" teenage hillbilly chatterbox named Chip. Just my luck. An 8-hour flight ahead of me, and I’ve got to sit next to this guy. Making matters worse, he was a Christian missionary. I cannot stand Christian missionaries. Can’t stand religion itself, actually. 

    His group was on its way to Minsk, Belorus, to preach the gospel, or whatever it is they do. Chip kept referring to his trip as a "business trip." I don’t know who he thought he was fooling. Himself, I guess, like religious missionaries everywhere.

    When I told him I don’t believe in religion and would greatly appreciate it if he didn’t try to "recruit" me, he was good enough to stop evangelizing. He didn’t stop talking, he merely contented himself with constant non-religious conversation.

    He loved roller coasters. He mentioned this several times. I don’t know why. "Have you ever been on a roller coaster?" he asked. "Yes, I have," I replied. "What’s the biggest one y’ever been on?" "Probably the Giant Dipper … in Santa Cruz.  Northern California," I replied. He didn’t seem familiar with that one, so I added, "Or maybe one of the ones at Magic Mountain in Southern California. I don’t really know." Or care, I thought. Again, he shook his head. He mentioned a roller coaster in Florida I’d never heard of. It was my turn to shake my head.

    It was a fascinating conversation all the way to Vienna.

    Vienna

    In case you didn’t know, the Vienna airport is nowhere near the city itself. All I saw of Vienna was from the air. It looked like a wonderful town. I’ll have to visit someday. At least I got some video footage of the Austrian Alps on the way in.

    Once disembarked at the Vienna airport, I voluntarily walked through the "Customs: Items to Declare" checkpoint. I told the customs agent I didn’t know if I needed to be there. He was busy with someone else, so he quickly asked if everything in my possession was mine and if I intended to sell any of it. When I said it was mine, and I didn’t intend to sell it, he waved me off impatiently, almost angrily. "Go. Go! "

    Doug, Jana and Jana’s father, Milan, met me at the gate. I had spoken to Jana on the phone once or twice and had seen a couple of photos, but it was the first time I’d actually met her in person.

    She kissed me, of course. Women like to do that when they meet me. It’s just my animal magnetism, I guess. The fact that I was in now and it was customary for everyone to kiss everyone never entered my mind.

    When we got outside I noticed how unseasonably cool it was. As Milan and I stood waiting for Doug and Jana to return from the bathroom, Milan taught me my first Slovak word: Zima.

    "No thanks," I replied. "I never drink before noon."

    He shook his head, not knowing what the hell I was talking about. He didn’t speak a word of English, so he demonstrated the meaning of "zima" by folding his arms across his chest and shivering. Then I understood. It was a bonding, learning experience. For me, anyway. I’m sure Milan just figured I was an idiot.

    Bratislava

    Once settled in at Jana’s parents’ house, Doug and I took the train to downtown Bratislava. Out on the street, I was impressed with the beautiful women. They were white, with some Nordic looks here, gypsy looks there, and Mediterranean looks over there. Very sexy, Earthy-looking. I wanted to take one home with me, or at least on the rest of my an trip. I later told Jana that I had thought Slovak women all looked like Martina Navratilova. I was wrong.

    After she finished up some final wedding preparations, Jana met us at Bratislava Castle. At the castle and needing directions or whatever (I can’t remember what), Doug and I found a couple of women on a bench. Doug asked if they spoke English. The one who was awake replied, "We are English," as if we should be impressed. I almost replied, "Well, we’ll try and converse anyway." But I held my tongue.

    At the castle gift shop, I managed to find some souvenirs. Well, a spoon. The spoon was for my sister. I don’t know why she collects spoons. Ask her. 

    Over the past two days, I had gotten a total of 6 hours sleep. The night before I left Nashville I got about four hours. That night around 2:30, I had awakened in a sweat because the air-conditioning was broken and it was probably 85 degrees with 85 percent humidity outside. I didn’t sleep for the rest of the night. I then got a "whole 2 hours" of sleep (if that) on the flight from Atlanta to Vienna. Then I lost seven hours due to the time zone change. A 15 minute nap in an actual bed at Jana’s parents’ house helped somewhat. 

    Thanks to Jana, her father Milan, her mother Ludmilla, her brother Milan, and her aunt Myca (which is the same name as my cat, by the way) I soon expanded my Slovak vocabulary beyond "zima." Don’t worry, it’s a short list:

    Hello = "dobry den" or "ahoj" (familiar; pronounced "ahoy"); good-bye = "ciao" (actually Italian, of course) or "ahoj" again; yes = "ano"; no = "nie" (pronounced "nyeh"); thank you = "dakujem" (pronounced "dyahkuyem", or something like that); and = "á"; please or you’re welcome = "prosim"; beer = "pivo"; cognac = "cognac"; enough/done = "dost."

    Doug and Jana’s wedding — my main reason for being there, by the way — went fairly quickly. I was one of the "witnesses." They don’t seem to have a Best Man and Maid of Honor there. Jana’s brother ("brat" in Slovak) Milan was the other witness.

    There was no rehearsal, though there probably should have been, since I had no idea what to do. I decided early on to just follow Milan’s lead. Throughout the ceremony, Milan and I stood like statues behind Jana and Doug (a.k.a. "Janka á Douginko"). Just making sure they didn’t run, I guess.

    The priest crossed himself a lot during the ceremony, and everyone in attendance was supposed to follow his lead. I hesitated a moment the first time this happened. Remember, I don’t believe in religion. The way I see it, it’s the worst thing ever invented. And crossing oneself has always been particularly abhorrent to me.

    I ended up crossing myself right on cue, though, if only halfheartedly, just for appearances’ sake. I didn’t want to make a political statement at Doug’s wedding. Mighty considerate of me, eh?

    A bunch of people from a Hungarian/American friendship society that Doug corresponds with were in attendance. It ended up being a fairly large crowd. At the time, I thought a good portion of the crowd was just curious tourists or locals. But most everyone there was actually invited. I had no idea Doug and Jana had so many friends.

    After the wedding, there were lots of pictures. I was then enlisted as the amateur video cameraman. I didn’t do a very good job, but it was better than nothing. My main task, as given to me by Milan senior, was to film a billboard outside of Bratislava that said, in Slovak: "Do you know what you’re getting into?"

    The reception was held in a rented hall several miles outside of town. There was a lot of eating, drinking, dancing and singing. We got a lot of it on videotape, which Doug later decided was, for the most part, unfit for public consumption. Thanks to his editing, memorable scenes of my dancing may never see the light of day. It’s a shame, really. I’m one hell of a dancer.

    The next day, Jana, Doug, Milan Jr. and I went to an old 12th Century castle ruin called Pajstun (pronounced "py-shtoon"). It was very cool (as in "interesting," not zima).  

    We then went to another castle (not so much a ruin) also in the area. Access to the top of this one was limited due to someone filming a movie or something, so we just walked around its perimeter. It was located at the confluence of the Morava and Danube ("Dunaj" in Slovak, pronounced "doon-I") rivers. 

    Earlier, I had said that some of the women of Bratislava have a "gypsy look."  Turns out I was wrong again. Gypsies are actually dark and, presumably, of Indian descent. Some even look like Australian Aborigines. And from what I’ve seen of gypsies, they are generally unattractive, sleazy-looking people. Sorry to be so harsh, but the ones I saw just gave me the creeps.

    Budapest

    Jana’s father drove us from Bratislava to Budapest, Hungary (about a four-hour drive), dropped us off, and picked us up the next day. In Budapest, every single woman is beautiful! Well, okay, maybe just the ones Milan Jr. and I noticed. I would definitely like to go back there. But there are so many places I want to go, I may never get back.

    Doug’s friend Klara and her boyfriend Istvan, who had attended the wedding and reception, took us to lunch at their favorite vegetarian restaurant. We then walked the length of Margaret Island, which sits in the middle of the Danube ("Duna," locally) River. We then got lost — although Doug insisted otherwise — and wandered through some slums — with Tina Turner concert posters everywhere — until we found our starting point again. From there, we walked up to Budapest Castle (or whatever it’s called). We were going to take the tram, but the line was too long.

    My fellow hikers checked with me to see how my back was doing (due to recent problems). When I said I was fine, we scaled the castle walls! Well, okay, not really. It just felt like it. We climbed up a steep and winding trail into the castle.

    I only learned two Hungarian (Magyar) words: " Kuszunum" (pronounced "kuh-suh-nuhm", meaning "thank you.") The other word was "híd" (pronounced "heed"), meaning "bridge." The Hungarian language is nothing like Slovak.

    Bratislava again

    After returning from Budapest and before leaving Bratislava, I was able to see the professionally-done wedding video. I think the cameraman was in love with Jana’s cousin Sylvia. He spent quite a bit of footage on her. Otherwise, the video was great.

    When it came time to leave, Jana’s mother Ludmilla kissed me goodbye and said "our door is always open to you." Everyone who was in the car for the Budapest trip then piled in and drove me to the train station for my trip to Prague. Once the train finally arrived, half an hour late at 1:15am, we said goodbye and I took my seat on the train.

    An argument (in English) broke out in the compartment behind me. Some young guy was shouting: "I’m telling you, there aren’t any seat assignments! You just sit wherever you want!" My cabinmates and I smiled at each other. I don’t know if they spoke English, but you didn’t have to.

    Doug then shouted at me through the window: "Bill, get your things!" Aloud, I mumbled "Why." But I wasted no time in complying. For all I knew, I was on the wrong train.

    Milan ran in and grabbed two of my bags. As we all ran several car-lengths down the boarding platform, Doug explained that they had arranged to get me into a sleeper car. It wasn’t until I was already running that I realized this was the first time in several months that I had run (again, because of my back).

    The sleeper car manager (or whatever he’s called) put me in with a young woman. This surprised me, but I didn’t complain. She smiled, and went right back to sleep. Yes, my "animal magnetism" at work once again.

    En route to Prague

    The few times that my cabinmate awoke (usually when I was either opening or closing the window) I spoke pidgin English to her. When she did reply, it was also in pidgin English.

    I didn’t sleep at all for fear of oversleeping and missing my stop. That fear turned out to be unwarranted, for when we arrived in Prague ("Praha" locally), the sleeper car manager (or whatever) came in and said, "Good morning. We will be arriving in Prague in five minutes."  

    Prague

    As the young woman awoke and gathered her things, I attempted to speak in complete sentences to her. It was then that I learned she had been on the train since Budapest, was originally from San Francisco, and spoke perfect English. I invited her to breakfast, but she made an excuse and we parted company. Bitch.

    With all my bags in tow, I spent the next several hours wandering all over Prague (mostly by foot, but also by subway, bus and trolley). I found a room at a place called the Hotel Kafka. It was more expensive than a youth hostel (which were all full), but not bad at $42. I figured I could "splurge," since most of my food and lodging had so far been free, courtesy of Jana’s parents.

    I saw a good portion of Prague that day, although I didn’t set foot in any castles or museums, which, of course, I now regret. My guidebook said that Czechs are "a warm and friendly people." The ones I met were not, particularly.

    A cab driver was friendly enough. I had flagged him down after wandering around on foot until my feet were killing me. I think he appreciated the fact that I used pretty much every one of my Slovak (very similar to Czech) words in a sentence. He had a postcard of a naked girl on the dashboard, at which I pointed and said "Dobré" (good).

    When he took me on a suspiciously circuitous route to the hotel, I thought maybe he was taking me for a ride, literally. But as I watched him drive (in my foot travels, I had become fairly familiar with the area) I realized it was the one-way  streets and various construction detours determining our route, not the driver’s greed.

    Since I spent more time in Bratislava than expected, I spent only one night each in Prague and Berlin. In between Berlin and Amsterdam I would spend the night on the train.

    I didn’t go out to a pub while in Prague. After Milan and I had gotten drunk and stayed up ’til dawn in Budapest (hey, there was free wine and beer in the fridge, what were we supposed to do?) I just wasn’t in the mood. Besides, my feet were sore, and I was tired of walking around.

    I didn’t take any video or still pictures in Prague (except in the hotel room, for some stupid reason). I was tired of doing the "tourist thing." Besides, in some of the areas I wandered through I didn’t feel comfortable whipping out the old camcorder and marking myself as a prime robbery victim.

    Berlin

    In Berlin, purple hair is real popular. Just thought I’d mention that. 

    I wandered until finding Kurfurstendamm ("Ku’damm," locally), the famous tourist street. I sat at an outdoor table in the main square near Kurfurstendamm Strasse and Zoo Station. I drank German beer (Schultheiss) and smoked French cigarettes (Gauloises). Next to me, two men spoke English in a passionate discussion of chemistry and physics. I was so happy to hear English being spoken, I wanted to join in. In front of and around my table were young people (punks mostly, but not all) rollerblading, skateboarding, playing hacky-sack, and just hanging out and smoking cigarettes.

    There are actually a few black people in Berlin, unlike Prague, Bratislava and Budapest. Descendants of American military men, I guess. Most of the black men had white girlfriends. 

    That night sometime past midnight, I went to a disco called Big Eden. A pamphlet claimed that admittance was free and beers were the equivalent of $5. The sign out front said "frei" (free) something or other.

    At the bar I ordered a Heineken from the knockout blonde bartender. She said something to me in German. I said "Sprechen sie English?" She said "Ten Deutchmarks [the equivalent of $7 or $8], please." 

    When I flashed what I thought was a "free beer" ticket I had received at the entrance, she explained that it was no such thing. "What is it then?" I said irritably. "Just a ticket," she said happily.

    I took the U-Bahn back to the hotel. That was the plan, anyway. When it stopped (for the night) one stop shy of my stop, I was forced to figure out how to get back to the hotel. 

    I wandered down some darkened street in the middle of the night, not really sure where I was. It kept me alert, I’ll tell you. When I came upon a small, utterly-dark park, I was doubly alert to even the slightest sound. But I made it back to the hotel in one piece, though I did approach it from the opposite direction I had thought I would.

    I spent the next morning lost on the S-Bahn (elevated train), trying to get back to the Berlin-Lichtenberg station, where I had arrived in Berlin. I needed to buy a ticket to Amsterdam and thought that this might be the place where I had to buy it.

    When I reached the station, I couldn’t find the place where I had disembarked after arriving from Prague. There was nothing there even closely resembling the train station I had arrived in. Hell if I know! So I got back on the S-Bahn and rode all over town before finally returning to the more familiar Zoo Station. There, I bought a ticket to Amsterdam, got a locker, threw everything in that would fit, and returned east on the S-Bahn to Alexanderplatz.

    There wasn’t room in the locker for one of my bags, so I just carried it everywhere I went. I’d been doing that throughout , anyway. I’d gotten used to it.

    Getting off at the Alexanderplatz station, I found the Unter den Linden. It’s a major, Old Berlin street with many landmarks, museums, libraries, universities, etc. I walked all over the area. Had I known it was so noteworthy, I would have brought a camera! Oh well.

    After touring the Unter den Linden and Alexanderplatz, I still had nine hours to kill. I probably should have spent some time in museums and whatnot, but, again, I didn’t.

    Not sure what to do next, I ended up taking the U-Bahn (or maybe the S-Bahn, I can’t remember) to a part of town called Charlottenburg. There was an open-air bazaar several blocks long. I wandered up and down its length, twice.

    Four more hours to kill and I found myself back at the Zoo Station. The scum of society who hang out in the train station (gypsies, punks, and foreign tourists like myself) really got on my nerves after a while.

    While sitting on the floor of the Zoo Station, watching the Olympics on the bigscreen TV (and enduring the same three or four commercials every ten minutes) I witnessed the end result of a pick-pocket. A young white girl was waving a wallet in the air in front of her girlfriends as they made their way toward the exit. I knew she had stolen it from the way her friends glanced guiltily in all directions and tried to get the thief to put the wallet away.

    A couple of times I got up to use the public bathrooms, but there was always a long, unmoving line. In line, I was surrounded by gypsies pretending to also be in line so they could pick my pockets. I kept my wallet and passport in my front pockets. Even so, I was constantly checking to make sure they were still there. When you’re a gypsy and you pick pockets for a living, front pockets are probably not much more difficult than back pockets. I ended up waiting and using the bathroom on the train. Aren’t you glad I’m telling you about my bathroom habits? 

    When the Amsterdam train finally arrived and I tried to board the sleeper car, the cabinmaster (or whatever he’s called) said my ticket was for the wrong day. I was worried because there was some confusion earlier when I bought the ticket. I had taken great pains at the time at the ticket counter to verify that my ticket was for the right day. I was assured that it was, though the ticket woman did not speak English very well. I wish I was fluent in all languages! 

    The cabinmaster refused to speak English, in spite of the fact that five years of English study is required in Germany. Luckily, a young German-speaking couple with tickets to the same train for the same day as me verified that both of our tickets were for the right day and train.

    When I boarded the train and found my cabin, the semi-conductor came back and asked for my ticket. When I gave it to him, he kept repeating: "Nein, nein! Reservation! Reservation!" All I could do was point at my ticket and keep saying: "Ja, ja! Reservation! Reservation!"

    Several times I tried to convince him to speak English, even if he couldn’t. He finally waved me off and left me alone in my cabin. I thought that was the end of it. It wasn’t. 

    En route to Amsterdam

    Some time in the middle of the night, I was awakened by a loud rapping on the door. A large, muscle-bound security guard and the conductor himself were there, along with the cabinmaster, to tell me that my ticket was no good.

    Luckily, the security guard spoke English. Not politely, but at least we could converse. Accusingly, he said, "This is not your ticket." I thought he was implying I had stolen it, but he simply meant that it was not a complete ticket. It was a ticket without a reservation. In any other civilized country, your ticket is your reservation. Not so in Germany.

    The guard then said, "So you have no money."

    "I’ve got money!" I said. "I’ve got American traveler’s checks, credit cards, American cash. What do you want?!"

    Meanwhile, the train was slowing down. They spoke amongst themselves and finally agreed to take my traveler’s checks. As I was signing the checks, the security guard said, "We will be back in a moment."

    The train made an unscheduled stop, done for my benefit, I’m sure, so they could throw me off the train. The train then started back up and the three men returned to take my checks.

    As he exited my cabin, the security guard smiled and said, "Have a good night." I glared at him and shut the door.

    I ended up having to pay an additional $90 just to stay on the train! I was glad they took traveler’s checks so I had a record of the transaction.

    Before reaching Amsterdam, the new (Dutch) conductor, a woman, demanded more money. Obviously, the ticket I had bought at the train station was absolutely worthless. At least she spoke English.

    She wanted Dutch gilders. I didn’t have any Dutch gilders. With my scrape with the Germans fresh in my mind, I asked: "Do you take American traveler’s checks?"

    "No," she shook her head. 

    "Credit cards?"

    No.

    "American cash?"

    Yes.

    Well, thank God, I thought. I dug into my wallet and pulled out a $100 bill. She said, "I cannot accept $100 bills. Do you have any Deutchmarks?"

    Well, sh*t! I thought. I didn’t have any Dutch gilders, and I was pretty sure I didn’t have more than a few Deutchmarks.

    "What now?" I said to her. She shrugged.

    I dug into my wallet again. Luckily, I found a 50DM note. I gave her that, shook my head, and laughed in relief. She smiled thinly, and gave me a few gilders worth of change. 

    [When I returned to Nashville, I called the bank and had them check into this ticket fiasco. They informed me that a credit check had been done on my credit card at Berlin’s Zoo Station, but nothing was actually ever charged. A month later, when the charge mysteriously showed up on my statement, I requested and filled out a refund request, which I ended up never sending in.] 

    Amsterdam

    By the time I got to Amsterdam and checked my luggage into a locker at the airport, I only had a few hours to spend checking out Amsterdam. There was enough time to see the canals, the prostitutes in the windows (extremely ugly women, by the way), buy a t-shirt, and have lunch. I looked for trinkets for friends, but didn’t find any. I ended up not even buying postcards since I would be home before they could be delivered.

    Security was very tight getting out of the Amsterdam airport. At Delta’s Atlanta-bound ticket counter, there were security guards with machine guns! They ran my bags through the x-ray machine, and an attractive security woman then pulled me aside and asked me the standard questions. I answered all her questions (throwing in the occasional flirtatious glance, of course, out of habit), and she eventually let me board.

    It was while waiting to board that I heard the news of the Atlanta Olympic park bombing, which explained the machine guns.

    Atlanta

    When we landed in Atlanta, several people applauded. No kidding! I guess they were infrequent flyers. In the terminal, everyone had to go through customs, of course. I never was strip-searched, though. Damn!

    Nashville

    Don picked me up at the Nashville airport. We stopped by his house to pick up my cat, Myca. Back at my apartment, Myca re-acquainted himself with things. Before leaving home, I had unplugged everything but the refrigerator. I plugged it all back in and went about the task of getting back to normal. THE END (finally!)