des moines, Iowa, News, politics

Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds continues to embarrass herself with her non-handling of COVID-19 pandemic

From the desk of Daniel P. Finney, hot seat editor, 24th Street bureau, Des Moines, Iowa.

Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds sure seems sweet enough when she goes before cameras to announce that’s she’s effectively doing not one single goddamn thing to stop the spread of coronavirus in her state.

She has the voice of a kindergarten teacher, welcoming all the students and urging us to sit on our placemats and not piss ourselves as she uses none of her constitutional authority to quell the spread.

In dulcet tones, COVID Kim, Iowa’s very own Hanoi Jane, tells us this is not about mandates.

It is.

Mandate the fucking masks already. It slows the spread. It’s provably true.

Instead, she has another mealy-mouthed, half-assed measure about gathering sizes and masks for people indoors longer than 15 minutes under a full moon with winds from the south, southwest.

Reynolds says there’s not enough law enforcement in the state to enforce such a mandate.

My friend Grant Jordan tweeted: “We don’t have enough law enforcement to enforce fucking speeding but we still have a damn speed limit don’t we?”

Reynolds ordered elective surgeries limited. Most of the hospitals quit booking elective surgeries months ago. Hospitals in Des Moines have kicked doctors and other medical professionals out of their offices to make room for emergency beds.

Elective surgeries were low on their list.

I will give COVID Kim exactly this much slack: Her Republican compatriots in Congress managed to convince half the country that COVID is a hoax or, at a minimum, it only killed people who were going to die anyway.

Well, we’re all going to die, I suppose. But there’s dying because you reached the end of your natural life cycle and there’s dying because you played Russian roulette with an AR-15.

COVID Kim shut down all youth sports except for high school. College and pros march on.

Somebody tell me how in the hell we’re going to have wrestling season in this state with every county slathered in COVID?

Basketball is hardly better unless we turn it into games of social-distanced HORSE.

COVID Kim could have stopped crowds at college games. She didn’t.

Thank God we’ve preserved the potential for crowds at the NBA D-League and minor league hockey games that hardly anyone attends. Those were socially distanced by lack of interest.

COVID Kim’s do-nothing approach to the pandemic officially pushes her past Chet Culver as the worst governor in my lifetime.

She’s still two-stepping to lame duck President Donald Trump’s kazoo orchestra.

Who knows what Trump will do after he leaves the White House — and he will leave — but if he starts a band, he should hire COVID Kim as a back-up singer.

Daniel P. Finney covers rage and anguish for ParagraphStacker.com.

ParagraphStacker.com is free, reader-supported media. Please consider donating to help me cover personal expenses as I continue writing while I pursue my master’s degree and teacher certification. Visit paypal.me/paragraphstacker.

Uncategorized

HOT SHEET: Outrage over Baby Yoda’s eating disorder, ‘The Unicorn’ is the best kind of OK, and AC/DC rocks in the most unsurprising way

From the desk of Daniel P. Finney, hot seat editor, 24th Street bureau, Des Moines, Iowa.

ITEM ONE: We thought of all creatures real and imagined, Baby Yoda would escape the wrath in the Age of Outrage.

This was not to be the way. On a recent episode of “The Mandalorian,” the child — colloquially known as Baby Yoda — ate some of the unhatched eggs of a frog creature whose line will die out if she doesn’t reach her husband in time.

Worshippers of the Church of Our Lady of Perpetual Victimhood flipped out because Baby Yoda ate some of the eggs when the frog lady wasn’t looking. “Genocide!” some cried. “Insensitive to people with fertility issues!” others bellowed.

The typist shakes his fist in rage. How dare they mock Baby Yoda’s eating disorder? The child seems to only be able to eat wet, slimy things. You never see him with a bowl of cereal, a PBJ on toast or some Doritos like a normal kid, which can only mean the poor kid has a debilitating gluten allergy. We mock him for eating the only food his little body can process. Baby Yoda clearly has space celiac disease, you smug bastards.

ITEM TWO: Pause for a moment to consider the following: Baby Yoda is a puppet. There are no frog people who need to mate on a nearby planet. In fact, everything in “Star Wars” and its related properties is fiction — what people in a forgotten age called “fun.”

ITEM THREE: Actors Olivia Wilde and Jason Sudeikis have broken up after 10 years together, multiple news agencies have reported, but no, none of us ugly muggles have a chance with either of them.

ITEM FOUR: The Hot Sheet holds little love for romantic comedies or sitcoms, but the ol’ Paragraph Stacker’s best buddy, Memphis Paul, convinced him to give CBS-TV’s “The Unicorn” a watch last fall. The typist ended up enjoying the show about a widowed father of two girls whose neighbors try to get him to start dating. The show is sedate and involves adults who are roughly the typist’s age but don’t act like complete idiots. The children aren’t precocious and saccharine — though they can be annoying as children are known to be. The second season debuted last week and it begins with widower Wade (Walton Goggins) having a kismet with his latest potential paramour, Shannon (Natalie Zea). Actors and writers must work very hard to tug at the heartstrings of this grumpy middle-aged former newsman, but the moment when Wade and Shannon finally meet in the final minutes of the second season premiere shook loose enough genuine warmth to recommend folks binge-watch the first season and start recording the second season post haste.

ITEM FIVE: The new AC/DC album, “Power Up,” is unsurprising in every way and that’s what makes it wonderful. Angus Young’s unmistakable shrieking guitar coupled with lead singer Brian Young’s maniacal screams sound like every other great AC/DC album. Hell, it sounds like the crap ones, too. What makes it wonderful is that these rockers aren’t drifting into power ballads or moody poetry to listen to when the rain streaks down a window. This is music you listen to when you grab a plastic cup of keg beer in a room full of drunks and jump up and down and shake your head and act out the wild rumpus. We can’t get into big crowds and do that stuff right now, but it is good to be reminded that such music can tap our wild inside.

ITEM SIX: The ol’ Paragraph Stacker enthusiastically recommends Habaneros, the new Mexican restaurant at 3200 Forest Ave. The restaurant refurbished the dilapidated former KFC/Taco Bell in the same location. The food is terrific. Their salsa is on point. The chips run a little dry, but that’s never stopped the typist from eating a bowl full of them. Recommended dish: Chicken Fajita Nachos.

ITEM LAST: These are unquestionably difficult times. The virus, the economy, the politics. They all suck. The ol’ Paragraph Stacker has no special cure for any of it. All he can do is tell you how he copes: He calls and texts his friends and family almost every day. He enjoys simple pleasures like comic books and James Bond movies. He takes a lot of naps. And he tries, and often fails, to remember that for all the things in this world to be upset about, he is still alive and there are adventures still left to be had. The storm has made the skies black and the water choppy. Set your teeth, friends, and keep both hands on the wheel.

Daniel P. Finney puts ketchup on a hot dog. Fuck you, Dirty Harry.

ParagraphStacker.com is free, reader-supported media. Please consider donating to help me cover personal expenses as I continue writing while I pursue my master’s degree and teacher certification. Visit paypal.me/paragraphstacker.

des moines, humor, Iowa, Media, People, Pop Culture

HOT SHEET: A redesigned website, a job interview, a plea for Twitter followers and suggested new Arby’s-Buffalo Wild Wings-Dunkin’ flavor mashups

From the desk of Daniel P. Finney, sergeant of the watch, 24th Street bureau, Des Moines, Iowa.

Been doing the place up a bit.

ITEM FIRST: The Hot Sheet looks different to those who call us up on the web or on mobile. The journalism jargon for this is a “refresh.” The psychological reason for this is the ol’ Paragraph Stacker gets bored sometimes and tinkers with things. Anyway, it looks different now. If you like it, please drop the typist a note. If you don’t like it, be a good person and lie.

Experts say I need to “build my brand” by begging strangers to follow me on social media.

ITEM SECOND: The ol’ Paragraph Stacker is losing followers on Twitter. The reason for this isn’t exactly clear. Maybe he melted some ice chips by writing something that triggered their peculiar sensitivities. I have been more openly critical of President Donald Trump lately. I know that makes some people mad. And I’ve also referred to Sen. Joni Ernst as “Dollar Store Sarah Palin” on more than one occasion. What can I tell you? Sometimes I’m grumpy. Sometimes I say mean things. Anyway, if you’re on Twitter and not following the typist, swing by @newsmanone and gives us a follow. There’s content there that you don’t see here. I admit it. I only want the followers back because I’m insecure and need to be loved by strangers on a social media website.

ITEM THIRD: The typist doesn’t want to jinx anything, but he had a job interview — the first in months — and he thought it went pretty well. He would not be surprised not to get the gig. It’s in a different medium in which he’s never worked. Still, it’s almost too good to be true: Weekend hours and a flexible weekday schedule that would work around his graduate school commitments. Here’s hoping.

ITEM FOUR: The Ivy League — those are the schools for the very smart or very rich and well-connected — canceled their winter sports schedule Thursday. They punted on fall sports and have pushed back spring sports until at least April. The Ivy League could be the canary in the cavern for winter sports. The league was the first to go belly up on fall sports. COVID-19 cases are spiking and experts warning of a brutal winter. Could it be long before other leagues crash and burn in pandemic hell?

Harrison Ford is attached to the part of Daniel Finney in Daniel Finney: The Movie.

ITEM FIVE: The magazine Vanity Fair posts excellent YouTube videos of actors discussing their work in a series called “Timeline of My Career.” They are long watches, in the 20-minute range, but the typist was enraptured by the entry from Harrison Ford, the hero of so many of his favorite films. He suggests giving them a view.

ITEM SIX: Inspire Brands recently announced a deal to purchase Dunkin’, the store that sells coffee and donuts but refuses to acknowledge its delicious donut heritage. Inspire also owns Arby’s and Buffalo Wild Wings, among others. We thought it would be fun for Inspire to consider donut flavors based on the tasty recipes of their sister brands. Here’s 10 we came up with that we’re sure you can’t wait to gobble up.

  1. Salt, Vinegar and Cinnamon Donut
  2. Vanilla Frosted Bismark with Teriyaki Filling
  3. Sweet Barbeque Glazed Old Fashioned
  4. Parmesan Garlic Bearclaw
  5. Smoky Adobo Corned Beef Double Chocolate Donut
  6. Market Fresh Cranberry Deep Fried Turkey Vanilla Frosted Donut with Sprinkles
  7. Jammin’ Jalapeno Blueberry Glazed Donut Holes
  8. Beef ‘n Cheddar French Cruller
  9. Chocolate Frosted French Dip
  10. Caribbean Jerk Glazed Dunkin’ Stick
When naked, Daniel P. Finney looks like a melting clock from Salvador Dali’s “The Persistence of Memory.”

ParagraphStacker.com is free, reader-supported media. Please consider donating to help me cover personal expenses as I continue writing while I pursue my master’s degree and teacher certification. Visit paypal.me/paragraphstacker.

comics, des moines, humor, Media, People, politics, Unemployment

HOT SHEET: 3 unsettling thoughts in the age of unease post #election2020 plus new comics recommendations

From the desk of Daniel P. Finney, sergeant of the watch, 24th Street Station, Des Moines, Iowa.

ITEM FIRST: The major news organizations seem to agree Joe Biden won the presidency in the general election earlier this month.

But do you trust it?

The typist does not.

No, the ol’ Paragraph Stacker does not subscribe to the unfounded claims the election was rigged or interfered with.

He just doesn’t think getting Donald Trump out of the White House will be as easy as voting him out.

Trump demonstrates no respect for norms or even basic human decency. This is a guy who threw paper towels at Puerto Rican survivors of a deadly hurricane.

This is a guy who essentially ordered border patrol to kidnap the children of refugees and then failed to reunite them with their families.

Why would anyone expect him to follow something as beautiful and profound as the peaceful transfer of power?

The typist keeps asking his buddy, a former Army CID man, if Trump can just lob a nuke at some country he has disdain for to bring the whole house down.

The friend of Hot Sheet says the armed services only obey lawful orders.

Are there some Trump loyalists who will try to keep him in power even after all the recounts are done and the lawsuits settle and the Electoral College is certified?

No, the typist does not trust it at all. And he won’t trust it until Biden’s hand is on the Bible and Trump is either going out on Marine One or being dragged away by federal agents.

ITEM TWO: A buddy asked the ol’ Paragraph Stacker if he truly thought Biden will make a great president.

Great? Whose to say? Biden faces a historical clusterfuck. COVID-19. Economic woes. Racial unrest. A world that wonders if America is truly as awful as it has behaved.

The typist looks at like this: For the past four years, the country has been a bus driving down the Rockies in the middle of a blizzard with a guy whose never driven before drunk on whisky and far gone on cocaine at the wheel.

Biden will be a guy with a clean driving record, who keeps his hands at 10 and 2, wears his seatbelt and won’t tolerate any horsing around in the aisles or in the back of the bus.

That’s the minimum one would expect from a bus driver, but compared to the last guy, it’s a dramatic improvement.

His presidency could still be a historic disaster given the issues he faces. But at least he had a concept of how to govern and a plan that doesn’t include cheap red hats and dog whistles to racists.

ITEM THREE: The most pressing issue that faces the lame duck president and Congress is an economic stimulus.

The country is slathered in coronavirus and the winter is expected to be worse yet. States across the country are expecting another shut down.

Nancy Pelosi and Mitch McConnell took turns trying to best one another in a grandstanding contest over the stimulus since the first expired in July.

The result is the only person who made a move to help the unemployed since the stimulus was Trump. His assistance wasn’t enough by half and didn’t last long enough, but credit where it’s do, it was something.

That our national legislative bodies are so impotent and callous to the struggles of millions of Americans is almost as shameful as the Trump presidency.

Of course this issue is personal to the ol’ Paragraph Stacker, who lost his job in May in the midst of the pandemic.

To quote Hannibal Smith from an episode of “The A-Team:” “It’s always darkest before it goes completely black.”

ITEM FOUR: Belated new comics Wednesday recommendations:

  • Star Wars Vol 1: The Destiny Path — Marvel Comics are great at telling “Star Wars” stories. They are better at it than Disney is making “Star Wars” movies. Disney owns Marvel. Maybe they should consult. Anyway, “Star Wars” comics have been delightful since the brand returned to Marvel from Dark Horse in 2014. This volume picks up the story of the heroes of the original trilogy moments after the end of events in “The Empire Strikes Back.” Luke is traumatized at losing his hand and learning Darth Vader is his father. Han is gone. Lando is still a mystery. The Rebellion is at a low point. This is rich storytelling ground and Charles Soule is the kind of writer to mine it to maximum potential.
  • Jack Kirby: The Forever People — Jack Kirby is the greatest artist in the history of comics and one of the greatest writers. He co-created with Stan Lee almost every character that eventually became a box office blockbuster. He left Marvel for DC Comics there and told some of the greatest stories of his career, creating a mythos called the Fourth World, home to the New Gods and the DC Universe’s greatest villain, Darkseid. The Forever People shows Kirby tapping into the youth movement of the area, with a group of traveling heroes fighting Darkseid’s effort to expand his tyranny from Apokplipse to Earth. The heroes fall somewhere between the Scooby-Doo gang and the rebels from “Easy Rider.” They can combine their powers to form Infinity Man. The dialogue is dated, but it’s like catching a crazy genre flick at the bottom of one of your Netflix queue. You’ll be surprised by how entertaining it really is.
Major League Wiffle Ball

ITEM LAST: There’s a lot of horrible stuff in the world right now, but the Hot Sheet wants to leave you with a bit of the bright side of life. Few places bring as much instant joy as the short video platform TikTok. The ol’ Paragraph Stacker discovered the account for Major League Wiffle Ball (@mlw_wiffle). Who knew there was such a thing? The highlights are fantastic, heavy on pitchers with crazy arm angles spinning Wiffle Balls in physics-defying arcs that either baffle batters or end up smashed for home runs. The whole thing is delightful and recalls the glory days of childhoods past when the bikes filled driveways and kids batted-in ghost runners and argued balls and strikes until the street lights flickered on and mother’s voices called them home.

There are a million stories in Daniel P. Finney’s baggy khaki slacks. This has been one of them.

ParagraphStacker.com is free, reader-supported media. Please consider donating to help me cover personal expenses as I continue writing while I pursue my master’s degree and teacher certification. Visit paypal.me/paragraphstacker.

des moines, humor, Iowa, Pop Culture

HOT SHEET: OMG, you won’t believe this story about punctuation, a big dog and a special drink

From the desk of Daniel P. Finney, sergeant of the watch, 24th Street Station, Des Moines, Iowa.

ITEM FIRST: If I’m going to have a headache this bad, I want the fun from the night before to go with it.

ITEM TWO: The following is a summary of every “Marmaduke” comic strip ever published: “Oh, that’s a big dog.”

ITEM THREE: We value your laughter. Please continue to stare at this joke for a brief two question survey after the punchline.

ITEM FOUR: If I were James Bond, I would order a screwdriver, less driver more screw.

ITEM FIVE: Sad news in the world of punctuation today. Police charged the colon with the murder of the comma. The slaying took place just hours after colon’s wife delivered a newborn semicolon.

ITEM SIX: Some of you are going have to think about that last joke for a minute, so we’re providing the space here.

ITEMS SEVEN: Your cat does not think it is a person. It has higher ambitions, such as eating your flesh to the bone when you die from a stroke.

ITEM EIGHT: I rarely fly, but when I do, I like to sit by the emergency exit. It fills me with unearned bravery to think I would be called upon to open that door in an emergency. The feeling is so heady that I’m a little bummed out when the plane lands safely.

ITEM NINE: I think some NFL teams should change their logo to a Rorschach ink blot and pretend they didn’t change anything.

ITEM LAST: The Hot Sheet is giving you the space here to fully enjoy the hilarity of that last joke after you’ve Googled all the vocabulary words.

The Hot Sheet is a QM production starring Daniel P. Finney as Dr. Richard Kimble, an innocent victim of blind justice, falsely convicted for the murder of his wife, reprieved by Fate when a train wreck freed him en route to the death house, to hide in lonely desperation; to change his identity, to toil at many jobs; freed him to search for a one-armed man he saw leave the scene of the crime; freed him to run before the relentless pursuit of the police lieutenant obsessed with his capture.

ParagraphStacker.com is free, reader-supported media. Please consider donating to help me cover personal expenses as I continue writing while I pursue my master’s degree and teacher certification. Visit paypal.me/paragraphstacker.

des moines, humor, News, People, Pop Culture

HOT SHEET: 10 funny jokes that you won’t be able to remember when you want to tell them to someone else

From the desk of Daniel P. Finney, sergeant of the watch, 24th Street Station, Des Moines, Iowa.

ITEM FIRST: Anthropologists say Inuits have 50 words for snow. I’d print them here, but 49 of them are profanities.

ITEM TWO: Shoveling snow sucks, but at least you don’t have to mow the lawn.

ITEM THREE: If you find a grammatical error on the internet and point it out in the comments section, your life goals are complete and you may ascend to heaven.

ITEM FOUR: [Insert inspirational quote here.]

ITEM FIVE: Sometimes I taunt my married friends by setting the thermostat to whatever the hell I want with no debate.

ITEM SIX: Man caves are for losers. I want a man castle complete with guard towers and unlimited place backs in the best chair.

ITEM SEVEN: In newsrooms all across America, editors and reporters debate the essential news question of the day: “Is it too early to publish the annual list of best/worst Thanksgiving side dishes?”

ITEM EIGHT: I’m not saying I’m bad with money, but if someone stole my identity, my credit score would go up.

ITEM NINE: A recent investigative report by Hot Sheet reveals football referees are paid by the flag throw. Bonuses are given for use of instant replay.

ITEM LAST: I would rather listen to Fran Drescher sing the national anthem on a continuous loop that hear one more person use the word “adulting.”

Daniel P. Finney wrote a check for 69 cents for half and half at Ralph’s in 1991.

ParagraphStacker.com is free, reader-supported media. Please consider donating to help me cover personal expenses as I continue writing while I pursue my master’s degree and teacher certification. Visit paypal.me/paragraphstacker.

Uncategorized

How’s it going, Dude? Not too good, man. Not too good.

Down, down, down, down, select … no, it’s just down.

I’m exhausted.

This year feels like a rolling fistfight and every day feels like I’m going to go down for the count for good.

I started the year by writing the obituaries for the best teacher I ever had, Drake University’s Bob Woodward, and the best writer anyone ever knew, Ken Fuson.

Then came pneumonia. COVID-19 arrived. The world shut down. The greedy corporate hustlers took away my job and ended my journalism career of 23 years.

That was all by May 1.

It all blends into a fetid soup after that. I continue to look for a job in the pandemic. I failed to find one.

I returned to graduate school at Drake with the idea of becoming a teacher. The classes gave me purpose early on, but the Zoom meetings drain personality out of everyone.

I am surrounded by bright, sharp minds, but the whatever sliver of the brain that craves face-to-face interaction is powerful.

I feel disconnected and estranged from people who are learning the same lessons as me at the same time because of the distance required by COVID.

And then there is the struggle to manage my longtime issues with mood disorders of depression and anxiety.

I take my meds. I meet with my therapist. And I lean, oh how I lean, on my friends.

I call some of them every day. I exhaust some of their patience with my incessant calling.

The impotent Congress, overrun by soulless grandstanders such as Nancy Pelosi and Mitch McConnell, let any effort for a stimulus fail and let people like me and 22 million other Americans twist in the wind.

“Get another job,” the occasional wiseass says to me.

I’d love to. I spent nearly a quarter century doing a thing that is on the verge of being extinct. Since 2001, half of all the journalist in the country have lost their jobs.

I have applied for jobs every week since I lost my job, sometimes multiple jobs a day. I got two callbacks and one interview.

All I do is worry. It eats up my days and keeps me up at night. Will the new Congress get off its fucking ass and pass a stimulus? Will I sell everything I own and end up living in YMCA housing? What if I get the COVID?

And I can’t fight the feeling that I failed.

They tell you it isn’t personal when they lay you off. It’s not about performance.

And I know this. I know it’s about money. I made too much. I worked for 23 years and made a decent living, but my experience would have been worth at least a third more 25 years ago. I was born at the wrong time.

It sure as hell feels personal when they take your job away.

I’m insecure, probably more than most.

I never felt good enough. I always felt like a second-stringer who got a cup of coffee with the big leaguers.

Sometimes I let myself think I was halfway worth a damn, but in the end, I was trashed like a used coffee filter.

And I feel like a failure because I’m still unemployed, living off unemployment.

I know how society looks at people like me. I’m sucking off the government teat. I’m a drain on society. I’m a loser.

And you know what? That’s how I feel, deep down inside. I’m feel like a loser. A broke, 45-year-old loser.

That’s harsh.

And maybe it’s more than a little whiny.

But I’m not a person who does well putting a cork in his feelings. Right now, I feel pretty bad.

I hurt. I’m sad. I’m scared. And I need to get it out. I just want to acknowledge it. This sucks.

Am I gonna be OK?

Sort of.

I’ll get up Monday and go to school. I’ll write my papers. I’ll apply for jobs. I’ll do the best I can to survive and hope one day I’ll be able to relax enough to live.

I’ll be back with the jokes tomorrow.

Daniel P. Finney once wore a kilt to a friend’s wedding. He’s not been the same since.

ParagraphStacker.com is free, reader-supported media. Please consider donating to help me cover personal expenses as I continue writing while I pursue my master’s degree and teacher certification. Visit paypal.me/paragraphstacker.

des moines, humor, Iowa, Media, News, Podcasts, politics, sports

HOT SHEET: Nobody cares what I have to say about the #election2020, but I’m saying it anyway

From the desk of Daniel P. Finney, sergeant of the watch, Drake Station, Des Moines, Iowa.

ITEM FIRST: Nobody cares what the typist thinks about the presidential election, but he’s going to talk about it anyway. The ol’ Paragraph Stacker is happy that Joe Biden won the presidency. Donald Trump is a horrible human being who embodied the worst traits of this country and forever lowered the standard of person it takes to occupy the Oval Office. The typist struggles to understand how his fellow Iowans voted so heavily in favor of this person who in every way refutes the image of kindly neighbors Iowans have always sought to project. He will struggle with this as he continues to move forward with life.

ITEM SECOND: Iowa political historians should study the campaign of Theresa Greenfield for the Senate because it was hysterically poor from its media standpoint. If you watched Greenfield’s ads — and if you watched a sporting event live since September, you couldn’t have missed them — her entire campaign centered around how her husband died in a work accident, he once owned a Chevy Nova, she played high school basketball and, most embarrassing of all, she has a twin who thinks her sister would be a good senator. These saccharine confections are the kinds of things that win middle school class presidencies, but not U.S. Senate campaigns. Whoever managed her media campaign should go into hiding for a while.

Even the dark money groups trying to help Greenfield fumbled. They took shots at Sen. Joni Ernst, Iowa’s Dollar Store Sarah Palin, because she — GASP! — lives in a $400,000 condo in Washington, D.C. The typist is not one to defend Ernst, but she does work in D.C. and a $400k condo in D.C. is a cheap hole-in-the-wall, not a swank luxury pad. Trying to go after someone for daring to have a residence in D.C. when they’re a senator is almost as dumb as filming an ad with your twin sister and expecting voters to give a flip about it.

ITEM THREE: If anyone is fool enough to think Joe Biden’s presumptive election to the presidency settles anything consider the following: This election was so close it took almost five days to figure out and there are still court cases to go through.

And then consider the cool, calm and even-handed response from the College Republicans at Iowa State, which tweeted “Everybody needs to arm up, expect these people to attempt to destroy your life, the elites want revenge on us.”

The typist won’t bother to try to figure out how Donald Trump, a billionaire by inheritance, con man, philanderer and failure at everything but being a reality TV host, somehow became an avatar for the downtrodden and disrespected.

It does remind the ol’ Paragraph Stacker of how foolish the notion that dangerous and horrible ideologies will not die out generationally.

ITEM FOUR: Withheld to give everybody a chance to count to 10 and settle down.

ITEM FIVE: The Hawkeyes and Cyclones were both winners Saturday. Iowa stomped Michigan State. It’s always fun to see Sparty lose. The Cyclones almost laid an egg against Baylor, but scored 28 unanswered points to earn their fifth win of the season. Iowa State is now 5-1 in the Big 12, the best record in program history and making the Cyclones real contenders for the league title. The ol’ Paragraph Stacker mocked this idea at the beginning of the season, but what the hell does he know?

ITEM SIX: Watch David Chappelle opening monologue on “Saturday Night Live.” I can imagine no better thing to see, laugh at and think about than this.

Daniel P. Finney is still optimistic enough to believe he may one day be in a torrid affair with a celebrity.

ParagraphStacker.com is free, reader-supported media. Please consider donating to help me cover personal expenses as I continue writing while I pursue my master’s degree and teacher certification. Visit paypal.me/paragraphstacker.

comics, des moines, humor, Iowa, Media, News, politics, Pop Culture

HOT SHEET: Some more #Election2020 stuff, but it’s mostly just harmless jokes and not anything serious

From the desk of Daniel P. Finney, sergeant of the watch, Drake Station, Des Moines, Iowa.

ITEM FIRST: Good news for lovers of political drama, CNN has renewed “The Forever Election” for a four more seasons. New episodes and characters to be revealed soon after the current season wraps Jan. 20.

ITEM TWO: I’ve gotten so many unsolicited texts urging me to vote and telling me who to vote for that I practically teared up when I got an unsolicited text for erectile dysfunction medication.

ITEM THREE: Remember back in January when the Iowa Caucasus were a giant clusterfuck for Democrats and they ultimately couldn’t chose a winner? Boy, we Iowans know how to set a trend!

ITEM FOUR: I received a fortune in a cookie with Chinese takeout that if only President Trump had read, perhaps the year would have gone better. The fortune said: “Avoid compulsively making things worse.”

ITEM FIVE: Belated new comics Wednesday recommendations:

  • Avengers No. 57 Facsimile Edition — The typist has a fondness for these facsimiles because they give you a chance to the old ads that ran in the magazine when kids first handed over 12 cents to the druggist. This issue deals with the costumed adventurer Vision and the reproduction primes interest in the coming Disney+ series “WandaVision.”
  • Venom Marvel Epic Collection: Symbiosis — These are the comics of the typist’s late youth, when dad was gone and mom was on her way out. He spent hours in Mrs. Pope’s art classes at Winterset High School with his buddy Lew trying to mimic the style of Todd McFarlane. The stories are medium at best, but Venom is a fun, original villain.

ITEM LAST: They typist delighted in a video from actors and friends Sarah Michelle Gellar and Shannon Doherty wearing giant bubble wrap balls and smashing into one another on a sunny lawn. Doherty is living with Stage 4 cancer having relapsed after a period of remission. If these two friends can find a way to laugh so hard in desperate times, so too can the rest of us find time for a giggle or two.

Daniel P. Finney just ain’t right.

ParagraphStacker.com is free, reader-supported media. Please consider donating to help me cover personal expenses as I continue writing while I pursue my master’s degree and teacher certification. Visit paypal.me/paragraphstacker.