Comedy, Pathos, and a Muse with Boundary Issues

Sunday morning, slightly hung over and I’m in the shower. I hear a familiar voice inside my head.

Muse: Pathos is the bedrock of comedy.

Me, rubbing conditioner in my hair: Uh huh.

Muse: And that’s why Call Me Kat is doomed to failure.

Me: I haven’t watched it. Have you?

Muse: Don’t need to. All the evidence is right there in the trailer. Awkward but lovable girl quits her job and starts to live her dream of running a cat cafe…shenanigans ensue. Where is the conflict? Where is the sadness? In a comedy, you need to torture your main character probably even more than in a drama. The only difference is that in comedy, you’re twisting the screws for laughs.

Me: But Call Me Kat is basically a rip off of Miranda and that show was a blast. How could it go wrong?

Muse: True, Miranda was good but do you remember when you stopped watching?

Me: Somewhere in the third season. It wasn’t funny anymore.

Muse: And that’s because Miranda was happy. She got her dream beau. Before that her comedy was based on how large, awkward, and socially inept she was. Her friends ridicule her and every adventure is a set up for humiliation. It was hilarious!

Me: Huh.

Muse: And this Kat show is starting at Miranda Third Season.

Me: Huh. Can I finish doing my hair now?

Muse: Sure. Just remember, I called it.

Me: Great. Get out.


Linear time is weird

Everybody is writing their 2020 wrap-ups. Listing all the things they did or wished they had done this year. All the bad shit that happened in 2020. A few of the good things.

Man, just thinking about writing down ALL THE THINGS that happened in 2020 makes my belly hurt.

Not because of any trauma from 2020. Actually, my year was okay. My family stayed healthy. We all kept our jobs. I am stoked that my commute was cut down from an hour to five minutes. I’m especially happy that I have a toilet all to myself!

It’s because I don’t really process time all that well.

I’m like a dog, I guess.

I just see today. This minute. What am I going to do in the next minute? And the next one. On and On.

Which really sucks when it comes to planning.

So, I scrolled through my calendar to see if anything majorly impressive happened this year.

So, in no particular order, here it goes:

I do remember February. I screwed up my ACL, fell down a flight of stairs, got a UTI and a hemorrhoid. February really sucked.

I signed up with a marketing team who signed me up for a ton of podcasts and interviews. That was fun and I met some really interesting people.

My Pilates routine took a big ass beating from February thru April. Luckily, I’m back on track for hiring small blonde women to torture me for an hour.

I learned that my job easily translated to a work from home position which made me very, very happy!

I released the Jake Istenhegyi Omnibus, Volume 1 and 2. I also sent a new version of Sherlock Holmes and the Shrieking Pits into the world.

I wrote of bunch of stuff but damned if I can remember what they were, if they went anyhere, or if they are just moldering on my harddrive.


So, I think my goal for 2021 is to be more mindful not only of what is happening today but to keep track of all the things that has, will, or could happen.

Man, that sounds like a hot steaming cup of no fun.


So…my mother’s crystal glassware and the Nazis

Last Thursday, I received an email from my cousin, Shannon, asking me if I wanted my mother’s china.

How my cousin that I only see at funerals and sometimes we cross paths in Krogers came to have my long deceased china is a mystery but shit like that happens in the South.

I told her that I would take it off her hands and to leave it in a box on her porch. I would come by and pick it up. We’re still in a pandemic, people.

I bring home a small box that reeks of cigarette smoke. There are cloth and paper towels that are saturated with the lingering stink of my Mother’s cancer sticks. Inside, was not china plates as I was expecting but very fragile crystal glassware.

I decide to do some research and see exactly what it was I had inherited.

From the maker’s mark, the pattern, and the year I guessed my mother first received this wedding gift (1963-64), I was able to pray to the Great God Google and found out a few things:

  1. The glassware was made by a company called Rosenthal Porzellan.
  2. The pattern was called Shadow Rose.
  3. The company was founded in 1879 in Bavaria.
  4. Everything was rosy for the companyuntil the Nazis came into power and even though Rosenthal was Catholic, he was still Jewish enough to be a problem. He was forced out of his own company.
  5. In 1941, when the Decree on Companies of Deprived Commercial Enterprises was adopted, the “Aryan” management intervened with the help of JOSEPH GOEBBELS to continue the use of the Rosenthal brand name.

Come the 1950’s, Rosenthal’s son took over. It was during this time that the company was based in Nuremberg (yeah….that Nuremberg) and by 1997 the company was 90% owned by Water Wedgewood. Currently, the company is owned by Arcturus Group and based in Selb.

So, anyway, that’s the story of how I inherited my Mother’s Nazi stained glassware.

The End.

Sources cited:


Dish Washing Thoughts

  • Does the lone dirty spoon you find in the sink after you’ve already started the dishwasher feel left out? Like it didn’t get to have a spa day with heat rinse like the rest of its silverware brethren? Does it feel unclean and “not daisy fresh”?
  • I never really understood the premise of the tv show Bewitched. So….let me get this straight. First of all, how long did Darren and Samantha know each other before they got married? I mean….how do you keep the fact that you have supernatural powers that flip the bird at all the natural laws of physics under wraps? He basically married a freaking GOD. How did he not know? And, after finding out his wife can pretty much wriggle her nostrils and do all the things, why did he not use this? Quit his job and live a life of luxury? On the flipside, what the fuck Samantha? You have miraculous powers and are descended from a line of magical beings and you’d give all that up for the life of a charwoman? The only explanation for this insanity: Stockholm Syndrome. Because you could never convince me that Darren’s D was all that.
  • And speaking of Stockholm Syndrome, Marge Simpson. It’s the only thing that explains why she stays with that fat slob. OR unless they are bound by a suicide pact because they accidentally murdered Hans Moleman and have to stay together to make sure neither of them squeal.
  • And, yes, the irony of having these thoughts while doing the drudgery of housework is not lost on me.

WIP Crown of Feathers

Proof of Life (ignore the sigils)

After weeks of rolling about in the pits of despair, I finally pull my head out of my butt and started writing my latest story, Crown of Feathers.

Full disclosure: I wrote a really quick 2000 word version of this about 2 years ago. I’ve always meant to go back to it.

The premise is simple: A woman is dying and three local hedgewitches known as The Sisters, are brought in as a last ditch effort to save her. Alas, they tell the family that her death was inevitable and that the crown of feathers beneath her pillow was proof positive that she was destined to die. The grandmother is told to make arrangements and so she leaves her grandson, Eli, to take care of his mother.

In an attempt to save his mother from the clutches of Death, Eli steals the ‘crown of feathers’ that has appeared beneath her sickbed pillow.

The next morning, Mother is out of bed, in the backyard, chasing chickens and ripping off their heads with her teeth.

Eli Kohl has twenty four hours to make things right before his Grandmother comes back with an entire buffet of family in tow.

Go here to hear Steve Shell of Old Gods of Appalachia fame read a bit of the WIP.