'Can' do politics

Humor / Below the Beltway /

WASHINGTON -- I may have a solution to most of America's political problems. I found it on a can of sardines.

I was searching the label for a phone number to reach a customer service representative. In my experience, these numbers are usually hard to find, tucked away near the agate listing of ingredients, wedged in near the really boring ones ...Read more

Rhyme and punishment

Humor / Below the Beltway /

WASHINGTON -- Good news. It is time for more "pokes" / which are poems retelling old jokes.

Stan and the Rabbi, retold as a Shakespearean sonnet

Oh rabbi, Stan is here with troubling news:

"My son, to whom I've taught the Jewish ways,

Just said to me that he has Christian views

And Christian will he be for all his days!"

"It's funny...Read more

Naming rites

Humor / Below the Beltway /

WASHINGTON -- As you may remember from my rants in previous columns, I don't approve of baby-naming as a creative art form. We are in the middle of an epidemic of preciousness, and there are no signs that it is abating. In 2016, more Americans named their sons "Camden" than "George." More chose "Maverick" than "Eric." "Messiah" was more popular ...Read more

Pet pees

Humor / Below the Beltway /

WASHINGTON -- I'm not one of those columnists who are always taking wildly provocative positions just to attract attention. So please don't question my sincerity when I write today in support of the lady in Washington, D.C., who threw a cup of pee onto a bus driver.

Now, hear me out. I respect bus drivers and acknowledge that pee-flinging ...Read more

Ready, aim ... you're fired!

Humor / Below the Beltway /

WASHINGTON -- I vowed not to write about Donald Trump this week. I'd done it two weeks in a row, and I knew three would be too much. The man is a succubus. He sucks all the oxygen out of the room, and then the nitrogen, and then the argon and carbon dioxide and water vapor and all other incidental components of air, leaving an outer-space-like ...Read more

Comic con

Humor / Below the Beltway /

WASHINGTON -- Some people are calling it the "Trump Badministration." Others -- and I am one -- have suggested this is "The Snidely Whiplash Administration," considering the collection of just-plain-wicked things it has already done: enabling the dumping of mining waste into rivers and streams; lifting legal protections for the elderly in ...Read more

The Gospel According to Donald

Humor / Below the Beltway /

WASHINGTON -- Did you see the widespread news reports that President Trump likes to get a "propaganda document" twice a day filled with nice stuff about himself? Supposedly, it is material that aides have culled that makes him look good. Sometimes it is a chyron screenshot with a line he would like. Sometimes it is a positive news story. ...Read more

Less is more

Humor / Below the Beltway /

WASHINGTON -- These are difficult times. We often find ourselves facing hard choices between unappealing alternatives: A flawed Obamacare or no Obamacare? Stick with Trump or shift to Pence? It is time to think positively about it all, and find some solace in the concept of choosing the lesser of two evils. To wit:

Eyelid twitch vs. ...Read more

Scoffing at Dangerfield: It's what he would have wanted

Humor / Below the Beltway /

This column originally ran in 2004.

WASHINGTON -- I have long kept in my sock drawer a mini-cassette recording of 20 of the weirdest minutes of my life. It was a phone conversation with Rodney Dangerfield. I promised myself I'd write about it after Rodney died, as a way of, you know, not paying my respects.

The Washington Post's Style ...Read more

Saved, by a whisker

Humor / Below the Beltway /

WASHINGTON -- The sweetest moment of my day is often the first moment of my day, when I open my front door and say hello to Philip and Buster, the stray cats who patrol my block. They are always right there. I suspect their cue is the sound of the plop of newspapers on my lawn. That's when they arrive, and they stay until their bellies are ...Read more

Do you want fries with that?

Humor / Below the Beltway /

WASHINGTON -- Today, we are going to discuss a word that rose to inane ubiquity in Washington in the past few weeks, as defenders of President Trump scrambled to find the right expression to trivialize charges that his family colluded with Russia to help defeat Hillary Clinton. Almost unanimously, virtually simultaneously, they settled on "...Read more

Textual relations

Humor / Below the Beltway /

WASHINGTON -- Did you see the recent "Modern Love" column in The New York Times by a woman who sits down with her boyfriend once a year to update their four-page, single-spaced "relationship contract"? The story made for fairly painful reading, particularly for the romantically inclined, inasmuch as it contained negotiated details such as who ...Read more

Heaven help us

Humor / Below the Beltway /

Gene Weingarten is on vacation. This column originally appeared in 2010.

WASHINGTON -- A Pew Research Center poll has found that atheists and agnostics are more knowledgeable about religion than are people of faith. Many of my fellow atheists are smug about this, which is a shame. Gloating is arrogant. We should instead use our superior...Read more

How now brown cow?

Humor / Below the Beltway /

WASHINGTON -- Every once in a while, the elitist media falls in love with some study or poll that demonstrates, once again, that ordinary Americans are idiots. The most recent one revealed that 7 percent of American adults believe chocolate milk comes from brown cows.

It occurred to me and a few friends that if your criterion is merely 7 ...Read more

Get shorty

Humor / Below the Beltway /

WASHINGTON -- Just got an email from a reader who complained that a feature in The Washington Post had contained blatant sexism that demeaned, humiliated, stigmatized and objectified an entire gender -- reducing human beings to their physical characteristics alone. The odd thing about this letter is that it was from a man, and he was outraged on...Read more

Yucks for bucks

Humor / Below the Beltway /

This column originally ran in 2012.

WASHINGTON -- I'm sitting at my dining room table, counting out a tidy pile of cash generated under a bold new business model of my invention; I am feeling the way Henry Ford must have felt when he saw that first assembly line rumble into action.

I just made $71 in a little more than three hours of ...Read more

Reply gall

Humor / Below the Beltway /

WASHINGTON -- Have you seen the new so-called "smart reply" feature in Gmail mobile apps? It will read your incoming mail and, if it gets the gist, will suggest some chirpy responses, such as "Sounds good!" or "Count me in!" or "Sorry, can't make it!" If you click on one of these answers, it is automatically pasted into your reply. Thus you are ...Read more


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