Alex Carrick’s Blog

Driven to Write — Enjoy the Ride — Share the Journey

Alex Carrick’s Blog header image 1

How to Know When You’re the Opposite of Handy

February 22nd, 2014 · American Humor, British Comedy, British Humour, Canada Humor, Charming, Children and Pets, Clash of the Sexes, Construction Humor, Cute, Family Humor, Farce, Funny Banter, Funny Construction, Funny Do It Yourself, Funny Dog, Funny Embarrassment, Funny Family, Funny Generation Gap, Funny Handyman, Funny Hobby, Funny Husband & Wife Story, Funny Pain, Funny Technology, Human Nature, Lifestyle, Offbeat, Outrageous, Romp, Satire, Screwball, Slice of Life

Alex Profile Pic 8-14

“Real” men know how to make and repair things.

They’re even able to improvise. I’m always astonished when one of my friends assembles furniture out of ferns.

I’m not feeling as bad about my shortcomings as I used to. Nowadays, most things are so complex that when they break down, the only recourse is to throw them out.

Still, there are some chores I should be able to tackle. But I’ve had plenty of warnings that I should stay away from machinery.

In the interests of public safety, here are a string of clues that, like me, you may not be handy.

(1) There’s a band of black and blue on your left thumbnail from a year ago when you last picked up a hammer and nails; also, the middle toe on your right foot is missing from when you once tried to start your chain saw.

(2) When you attempt some plumbing repairs, such as changing a washer, the dog walks in and what she’s thinking is clear in her eyes. “Really? This looks like trouble. I’m gonna go back into the living room and lie on the couch.”

(3) You’re in the garage having a look at the engine of your car when you realize you’d be more productive inside the house with crayons and a coloring book.

(4) The knife you’ve stuck into the toaster to release the spring mechanism is glowing brighter than your cheery smile earlier in the day when you said, “I can fix that.”

(5) You think you’re an expert in hanging pictures but the old farmhouse in the painting above your fireplace is sliding off the wintry landscape, to the left.

(6) The build-your-own bookcase project you initiated looks like a jungle gym set for an as-yet-unidentified species of aliens.

(7) ‘Cause it resembles a boxcar, your backyard deck project appeals only to a convention of hobos.

(8) In an excess of zeal, you once wall-papered over your fuse box and spray-painted your cat. At least the wallpaper featured an appropriate lightning-bolt pattern and the cat appeared stunning in chartreuse.

[Read more →]

→ 1 CommentTags:···········

How to Know When You’ve Become a Certain Kind of Writer (wink wink)

February 8th, 2014 · American Humor, Amusing, Bad Taste, British Comedy, British Humour, Canada Humor, Charming, Clash of the Sexes, Cop Humor, Cute, Farce, Funny Embarrassment, Funny Erotica, Funny R-rated, Funny Sex, Funny Writing Story, Jokes, Lifestyle, Oddball, Offbeat, Outrageous, Puns, Romp, Screwball, Sexual Innuendo, Twisted, Whimsy, Witty, Zany

Alex Profile Pic 8-14

Surrounded by racy stories in the media everywhere these days, I sometimes find myself caught up in the flow and straying out of bounds with my material.

To help you discover whether or not you may be flirting with the same R-rated conundrum, here are a dozen tell-tale signs that, wittingly or otherwise, you’ve acquired some expertise in writing the good stuff.

(1) You take two double entendres and try to make a threeway.

(2) You hang out with a very naughty crowd on Twitter and fervently pray you’ll never meet any of them in person.

(3) You keep your new identity secret from your wife although she wonders why you’re now getting mail addressed to Mr. Swordmaster.

(4) You note that your competitors in the genre are often women; or they might be men writing as women; or women writing as men pretending to be women; or…oh never mind, at this rate your privates will fall off.

(5) You like to think your erotica has become acceptably main-stream but then wonder why you feel the need to bathe in borax and shed your skin.

(6) Since pretty much every kind of fruit or vegetable carries some sexual connotation, you start hanging out at your local superstore. When the cops are called, you claim you’re doing research. Winking at the produce manager while fondling a melon doesn’t help you avoid arrest.

[Read more →]

→ 1 CommentTags:··········

How to Know When You’re on the Cusp of Old Age

February 1st, 2014 · American Humor, Amusing, British Comedy, British Humour, Canada Humor, Charming, Cute, Family Humor, Farce, Funny Aging, Funny Family, Funny Generation Gap, Funny Rant, Heartwarming, Human Nature, Oddball, Offbeat, Outrageous, Romp, Sardonic, Screwball, Silly, Whimsy, Zany

Alex Profile Pic 8-14

This story doesn’t need much preamble. Besides, I like to keep my writing short these days. Maybe it’s a by-product of growing crankier.

From a man’s point of view, the following are advance indicators that you may be approaching the “senior” years.

(1) You read episode summaries of your favorite TV shows on the Internet so you won’t have to watch them. Better to snooze on the couch to the nice background noise.

(2) You can remember a time without television, which wasn’t so different from now since, without help and some combination of three “remotes”, you can’t get your current high-tech monstrosity to work properly.

(3) Half of your conversation with family and friends concerns your aches and pains. Sadly, that’s also when you’re most coherent.

(4) You go skating with family and friends and the only thing you can think about as you round the rink is, “What’s that tingling in my arms and legs? Am I blacking out?”

(5) You need to attach wheels to your daily pill dispenser to move it from here to there.

(6) Your sweater collection is bigger than your tie collection by a factor of ten and eclipses your wife’s shoe collection.

[Read more →]

→ 3 CommentsTags:···········

My Dentist and I Argue over Oral Hygiene

November 21st, 2013 · American Humor, Amusing, British Comedy, British Humour, Canada Humor, Charming, Cute, Dentist Humor, Family Humor, Farce, Funny Banter, Funny Dialogue Story, Funny Horror, Funny Pain, Funny Rant, Funny Script, Funny Torture, General Humor, Human Nature, Jokes, Lifestyle, Medical Humor, Oddball, Offbeat, Romp, Scary, Screwball, Silly, Twisted, Video Script, Whimsy, Witty, Zany

Alex Profile Pic 8-14

I went to the dentist’s office this morning.

To help foster a personal touch, there’s a notation on my chart that I’m an economist, so she usually begins our sessions by asking me where I think interest rates are headed.

This time, however, my body language was such that she skipped the formalities and we jumped right in.

DENTIST: So how are you doing today, Mr. Carrick?

ALEX: When I was here last week, you said I needed a root canal on a tooth on my lower right. Since then, I’ve had a cap break off on a tooth on the lower left, leaving a sharp spike that’s ripping my tongue.

Frankly, I’m feeling miserable.

I’d managed, somehow, not to swallow the gold cap and I’d kept it in a plastic baggie to show her. I pulled it out of my pocket.

DENTIST: Oh wow! That’s not good. It’s old, you know. We don’t do gold caps anymore.

ALEX (acutely aware of my age): I’m not surprised. I’m old. Can you re-use it?

DENTIST: No, but a jeweler could melt it down for you. It might be valuable. Here, you can have it back.

ALEX: No, you keep it. It’s your payment. Just be sure to give me the change when we’re done.

She and her dental assistant laugh. I don’t know why. I’m being serious.

If the gold remnant really is worth something, I have more of them.

Stop! What am I, crazy? Don’t go there.

Still, where did I put the pliers?

DENTIST: I’ll take care of your broken tooth first. There’s only a stub left. I’ll cover the jagged edges with enamel and you can decide later if you want an implant.

ALEX: What does that involve?

DENTIST: Here, have a look at this model. (She hauls out a scary-looking jumble of plastic.) I’ll begin by placing a screw in your jawbone…

ALEX (interrupting): Thank you. I get the idea. You can skip the rest.

DENTIST: The procedure will cost between $3,000 and $4,000.

Currency signs start twerking in my brain.

[Read more →]

→ 1 CommentTags:·········

Dracula Meets Al Gore

November 16th, 2013 · American Humor, Amusing, British Comedy, British Humour, Canada Humor, Cute, Family Humor, Farce, Funny Banter, Funny Dialogue Story, Funny Environmental, Funny Family, Funny Horror, Funny Husband and Wife Banter, General Humor, Horror, Jokes, Literary, Macabre, Monster, Oddball, Offbeat, Outrageous, Romp, Sardonic, Satire, Screwball, Silly, Uncategorized, Whimsy, Witty, Zany

Alex Profile Pic 8-14

The 19th century writers Mary Shelley and Bram Stoker were among the first great environmentalists.

Their creations – Frankenstein’s “monster” and Count Dracula respectively ‒ blazed new trails in preserving scarce resources.

In his research and during the operation that led to his triumph, Dr. Frankenstein was careful to use the purest form of electric power, lightning.

No smoke-emitting coal or radiation-leaking nuclear or equally obnoxious fossil fuel energy source for him.

And he knew how to recycle. Boy, did he know how to recycle. Body parts mainly.

He established a precedent that most municipalities – through their blue box programs ‒ are trying their hardest to meet in modern times.

The environmental abusers in the Frankenstein story were the angry villagers. Heading off into the night with their tar-dipped torches, they were the ones guilty of launching nasty particulates into the atmosphere.

In subsequent Hollywood versions of Frankenstein, the ending has often been changed. In the original novella, mini-me Frankenstein spent his final days hopping from ice floe to ice floe in the frozen Arctic.

I choose to believe he was communing with nature and becoming one with the seals and polar bears.

[Read more →]

→ 1 CommentTags:··············

Too Soon? Too Much? Too Bad

November 9th, 2013 · Afterlife, American Humor, Amusing, Bad Taste, British Comedy, British Humour, Canada Humor, Celebrities, Comedians, Cute, Disturbing, Entertainment, Family Humor, Farce, Funny Embarrassment, Funny Irony, General Humor, Human Nature, Jokes, Lifestyle, Macabre, Oddball, Offbeat, Outrageous, Retribution, Revenge, Romp, Sardonic, Satire, Screwball, Silly, Slice of Life, Surprise Twists, Tasteless, Twisted, Whimsy, Witty, Zany

Alex Profile Pic 8-14

Certain professional comedians believe they have a sacred duty to uncover something funny in every situation ‒ natural disasters and human misfortune be damned.

As an individual who often writes material that is intended to be humorous, I may sympathize with this approach even while cringeing.

When the average man or woman attempts such levity, however, there are dangerous pitfalls. The awkwardness-quotient can rise too high.

The following are signposts that you may have gone too far or misjudged your timing.

(1) Gilbert Gottfried says your comments are tasteless.

(2) Your parents change their surname.

(3) After the words slip out, the sink-hole in your stomach swallows a car and you know you have to move halfway round the world.

(4) Flesh-eating zombies shy away when you approach.

(5) The devil lets you spend all the time you want at his time-share in Kitzbuehel. He’s no longer as keen on skiing since he flew off a steep vertical and his horns got stuck in a tree.

(6) When you die, you still hope to upgrade from hell to heaven by means of a “he was only being playfully scatological” escape clause.

[Read more →]

→ No CommentsTags:············

If Porcupines Had Wings, No Balloon Would be Safe

October 26th, 2013 · American Humor, Amusing, Anthropomorphic, Bad Taste, British Comedy, British Humour, Canada Humor, Charming, Cute, Family Humor, Farce, Feel Good, Funny Animal, Funny Irony, Funny Parable, General Humor, Heartwarming, Human Nature, Irony, Jokes, Oddball, Offbeat, Outrageous, Puns, Romp, Sardonic, Satire, Screwball, Silly, Surprise Twists, Surrealism, Whimsy, Witty, Zany

Alex Profile Pic 8-14

In the political debates leading up to, during and following the recent government shutdown in Washington, a lot of “what ifs” were thrown around by some of the participants.

This led me to consider some intriguing what-ifs that might be proposed for the animal kingdom.

Here are a dozen or so. Keep in mind it’s the imagery that’s important.

(1) If stallions had bigger testicles, they’d protest against show-jumping.

(2) If spiders had more legs, they’d probably have trouble putting on their pants.

(3) If elephants had tele-prompters, they’d never ever forget their lines.

(4) If ants had uncles, as well as farms, they’d be happier and the English language would make more sense.

(5) If gorillas had greater Internet access, almost certainly there’d be more system crashes.

(6) If giraffes had step ladders, there’s no telling what they’d see; if they also had umbrellas, they’d be a hazard to satellites.

(7) If sharks had flexible work schedules, they wouldn’t need to gobble their food.

[Read more →]

→ 1 CommentTags:······················

“Two Scoops” Is Just Right – Now Available!

January 17th, 2013 · Allegory or Fairy Tale, American Humor, British Comedy, British Humour, Canada Humor, Children and Pets, Cottage Life, Cute, Economic Humor, Family Humor, Fantasy, Funny Dog, Funny Family, Funny Irony, Funny Rant, Funny Workplace, General Humor, General Interest, Heartwarming, Human Nature, Irony, Jokes, Lifestyle, Love, Mystery, Nostalgia, Not As It Seems, Oddball, Offbeat, Paranormal, Religious allegory, Romance, School Days, Science Fiction, Screwball, Slice of Life, Supernatural, Surprise Twists, Time Travel, Whimsy, Witty, Zany

A collection of some of the stories appearing on this blog site.
A collection of some of the stories appearing on this blog site.

Mr. Carrick’s entertaining books are perfect for when you want to relax. They are also spot-on gifts for almost any occasion. To order “Two Scoops” Is Just Right for Kindle from Amazon,  please click here“Three Scoops” Is A Blast! can be obtained by pressing  here“Four Scoops” Is Over the Top is available here. And “Five Scoops” Is An Addiction! is downloadable here.

All Mr. Carrick’s other books – the Ten Tales series and the stand-alones – can also be ordered for Kindle in e-book/digital format. The links in the right-hand column on the screen will guide you.

When Writer’s Digest chose Mr. Carrick’s site for its Blog of the Week (mid-May 2012), the accompanying description said, “Alex Carrick’s blog is clean, crisp and entertaining. His stories range from humorous to thought-provoking, making it a fun read.” Enjoy!

→ No CommentsTags:···········

My Wife and I Argue over our Travel Plans (Hey, I’m not Cheap but…)

November 30th, 2012 · American Humor, British Comedy, British Humour, Canada Humor, Charming, Children and Pets, Clash of the Sexes, Cute, Family Humor, Farce, Funny Absurd, Funny Banter, Funny Dialogue Story, Funny Family, Funny Husband & Wife Story, Funny Husband and Wife Banter, Funny Outrageous, Funny Travel, Jokes, Lifestyle, Oddball, Offbeat, Screwball, Slice of Life, Sweet, Whimsy, Witty, Zany

Alex Profile Pic 8-14

I don’t understand how women think. It’s been a mystery to me all my life and I expect it will continue to confound me ‘til the day I die.

I had a perfectly reasonable idea for how our family should spend the holidays this year.

It was practical, do-able and would have saved us a lot of money. In short, the ideal solution for what has often been a predicament in the past.

Rather than me going on like this, however, why don’t I set out the discussion my wife, Donna, and I had exactly as it transpired.

Then you can decide who was in the right.

DONNA: No you don’t. You’re not going to pull that crap again like you did last year.

ME: What do you mean? We all had a great time. Surely, you can’t deny it.

DONNA: Don’t call me Shirley. (It’s an old joke between us. Sadly, it’s become less funny since my memory has become more spotty.)

ME: Okay, Sweetie (which is my way of getting around all concerns about what my wife, my kids and our pets are named). I had fun on that trip. And I’m pretty sure everyone else did too.

DONNA: No we did not. That’s not how we wanted to see New York, taking a virtual tour by way of Google maps.

ME (adopting an expression of mystification): Well I’m sorry to disagree, but I thought it was terrific. We drove around Times Square. Saw the Statue of Liberty. Took a few moments to absorb the majesty of the Brooklyn Bridge. All while staying comfortable in our living room.

DONNA: I want to go to Paris this year. Actually travel there. Not see the sights through satellite images on a computer.

ME: But then you’d have to get your hair done.

DONNA: I want to get my hair done.

[Read more →]

→ 7 CommentsTags:··············

Bad Teeth and Smelly Feet (a.k.a., Toronto’s Plastic Bag Ban)

June 16th, 2012 · American Humor, Amusing, British Comedy, British Humour, Canada Humor, Economic Humor, Family Humor, Farce, Funny Embarrassment, Funny Environmental, Funny Family, Funny Government, Funny Politics, Funny Rant, Funny Smell, Funny Toronto, Green Environment, Human Nature, Lifestyle, Outrageous, Political Humor, Rant, Sardonic, Satire, Screwball, Whimsy

Alex Profile Pic 8-14

Toronto City Council recently banned the use of plastic bags beginning January 1, 2013.

It’s a tremendous source of comfort to me that our elected officials are always looking out for what’s in our best interests, whether we know it or not.  

My family of five will no longer be able to tote home our usual 20 bags of groceries from the supermarket in quite as easy a manner.

We’ll either have to use fabric bags, which become easily contaminated with bacteria, or paper bags, thereby costing us more trees.

Trees do grow back, given sufficient time. And cotton or linen can be sanitized with sufficient use of eco-friendly detergent.

I guess we’ll have to stockpile plastic bags for our walks with Daisy-dog. Or they’ll become one more item to buy at Wal-Mart.

Nobody’s quite sure what this will mean for dry cleaning establishments. Maybe we’ll have to wear our fresh clothes home, in layers.

Or fruit vendors. Will those roll-down little plastic baggies become a thing of the past?  

But, hey, I’m sure this will all be sorted out in the goodness of time.

The nominal reason to eliminate plastic bags is to improve the environment. But I suspect there’s a hidden reason that goes deeper than that.

And it shows how well certain of our wisest councilors understand our true dark natures.

[Read more →]

→ 2 CommentsTags:·············