Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Tomato Tahmahtoe Schlomo ....

Into the breach once more dear friends ....

I often think of that line. It's from an album by The Firesign Theater brilliantly titled "Don't Crush That Dwarf, Hand Me the Pliers." This album may be before your time since it was popular when I was a collegian. But I have to agree with the Rolling Stone review more than a decade after it's release that called it "the greatest comedy album ever made."

I like that line more because it is, like most Firesign material, at least a double entendre. In this case, referring to the famous lines in William Shakespeare's Henry V, III, i, 1 "Once more unto the breach, dear friends, once more..." The play on into versus unto is great.

In case you haven't guessed, I am a big fan of double and triple entendres and puns. Unfortunately, telling puns is usually grounds for immediate execution by howling hordes of unhappy listeners. So I restrict my pun telling and most of my shaggy dog stories to close relatives and those who are unlikely to catch me as I head for the hills at the end of the experience. 

What brought the phrase to mind tonight was the discussion at a city council work session about setting water rates. If you set the rates and add a step structure to the rates to encourage conservation, people might actually conserve too much and so you would have to raise the rates again to cover the operational costs of the water treatment plant. On the other hand, if you set the base rate to cover the operational overhead and keep the per gallon charges down, you hurt those on low and fixed incomes disproportionately. And no matter what you do, people are going to be unhappy and think it was the wrong decision. I sometimes think that people fail to realize that council members pay the same rates as anyone else, so we understand the fiscal pain involved. 

Anyway, another two and a half hours of my life gone in a futile attempt to come up with some plan that doesn't gore anyone unfairly. I could have been doing so many other things during that time. Oh well, I only have until mid November and I am term limited out of office. I haven't decided if I am going to call my successor and critique every action of the new council and mayor yet. It might supply some deep winter amusement. {*grin*}  Maybe warm the cockles of my heart during the nights of frozen tundra?


  1. I use a similar expression (another two and a half hours of my life gone) when exiting a bad movie....I think I go a bit further and say another 2 hours of my life I won't get back, do you think the studio will reimburse me.

    I remember Fireside Theatre because someone in my family had them along with Dr. Demento (he's the one that did the shaving cream song correct?)

  2. I vote for critiquing the new mayor on a weekly basis. Sounds like fun!


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