This is Why I Don’t Get Paid to Write Obituaries

Knock knock!

Who’s there?

Henry Kissinger.

I heard he died. Just read it on the news.

That’s not how these jokes work… Let’s try this again. Knock knock!

Who’s there?

Henry Kissinger.

Henry Kissinger who?

Henry Kissinger. THE Henry Kissinger? I mean, you have to ask “Henry Kissinger who?” It’s not a very common name. He was kinda famous. Geez, read a book.


Anyway, he’s dead. One hunderd years old. Kind of a controversial fellow.

*Seething, silent rage*

It’s a lot funnier if you knew who he was.

What the Shit, Pop-Tarts… Are You Trying to Kill Me?

Howdy, folks! I write to you from my secret bunker on the second floor of an apartment in Wilmington, on the coast of North Carolina, where a bunch of rain is falling. Hurricane/Tropical Storm Idalia approaches.

Real Pop-Tarts flavors. Strawberry sans frosting, Cherry with frosting, Blueberry with frosting.

It’s kind of 50-50 at the moment whether one should evacuate or hunker down. Either way, I’m stocking up on nonperishable food that requires neither refrigeration nor heat should the power go out or if I need to toss it in the car and bolt for my life. I got PBJ, Cheez-its, and Pop-Tarts.

To save space in case of evacuation, I am taking these things out of their boxes but keeping them in their protective/identifying bags/envelopes.

PBJ and bread, remain in their efficient containers. All good. Also, I packed some utensils just in case.

Cheez-Its… sorry, Cheez-It crackers… Good to go. The bags are not labeled, but they are translucent enough for an expert such as myself to tell the Hot-n-Spicy ones from the Cheddar Cheese Grooves variants.

Kellogg’s Pop-Tarts… oh, Pop-Tarts. What the actual shit, Kellogg’s?

Different types of Pop-Tarts are clearly marked on the box at the grocery store. There are like 37 different “flavors” available at any given time, and I put “flavors” in quotes because some of these are NOT flavors. At least not ones that are canon in my realm of toaster pastries.

bad pop tarts flavors
Apple Jacks? Banana Bread? Brown Sugar Cinnamon? Cookies & Creme? What frresh Hell is this?

Banana Bread? Watermelon? Chocolate Sundae? Bubble Gum? Look at this clown show! What the hell is this shit?

Now here’s the problem… In my haste to prepare for this impending weather event, I dumped all my boxes of Pop-Tarts out on the counter to put the foil-wrapped twin packs in the bag, and…

Pop tart foil packages
Which flavor is which? I have no idea!

Again, WHAT THE ACTUAL SHIT, KELLOGG’S? There is no way to distinguish one foil pack of Pop-Tarts from another by flavor. They all have the SAME EXACT GRAPHICS! And there is no expiration date on those foil packs.

“But Ron,” you might ask reasonably, “Do those things reallly need an expiration date?

No. They’re like Twinkies. They last forever.

Pop tarts foil pack
No markings. No flavors. No expiration dates.



So why didn’t I think to mark them? I dunno… WHY THE HELL DIDN’T KELLOGG’S THINK TO MARK THEM?

I am not a multi-billion dollar food and merchandising conglomerate. I am just some guy who wants to survive a weather event. Stop trying to kill me.

Oh, and Twinkies. Easy to identify, and they last forever.

Ron Ruelle’s new book “Anchovies & Ice Cream” is available now at

I Proudly Wear the Cone of Shame

Yes, I’m fine.

Please stop asking me if I am fine.

Also, please stop staring. I can feel your eyes burn through me even when you’re behind me.

Y’know, I have been wearing this protective cone around my neck long enough that I don’t notice it when I look in the mirror. It’s only when you ask, “hey, what’s up with the doggie cone?” or shout, “look at that guy with the cone on his neck!” that I once again become aware that it’s there.

I deserve some privacy and respect. When I posted on social media “Tragic news! I have to wear this cone for the next few months,” the response was mixed. Some folks offered thoughts and/or prayers, some asked what had happened. Excuse me, but this is a private matter. How dare you respond to my public post with questions about the reason? And while your thoughts and/or prayers are lovely, I could really use some money. How come no one responds, “With respect for your pain and need for privacy, if you need cash, please DM me.”

But, seriously, why do I wear it, you might ask? Maybe I had surgery. Maybe I bite my fingernails too much. Or other nails. Maybe I just taste delicious, like minty, and can’t help myself. It’s none of your business. I don’t know why I feel compelled to reach 600 words explaining/not explaining this.

And who said it’s a burden, despite my initial post announcing the cone-wearing as a tragic and sad thing? Do you know how much popcorn I can dump into this thing and just munch away during a movie on Netflix? I’m working on a system to seal the bottom so I can fill it with margaritas or martinis. It could potentially hold a pitcher’s worth. (So far, dismembering a pool noodle and applying a lot of duct tape shows the most promise for a tight seal.)

Also, I’m starting to think I look kind of cool like this. Maybe I’m a trendsetter. Why am I wearing a protective cone? Why are you NOT wearing one?

My cat looks at me funny because she is conflicted. She is sympathetic, having worn one for a while years ago, but also snickering at how ridiculous I look. Cats are sweet and evil at the same time. Thanks, Schroedinger.

So please respect my privacy. Also, click and like and subscribe to this post and share it online. But respect my privacy and give me my space. Another also, I’m thinking about selling advertising on the cone, so if you know any interested parties, hit me up in the DMs!

Ron Ruelle’s new book “Anchovies & Ice Cream” is available now at

You Don’t Care About This One Bit. Which Is Why You Should Watch It.

John Oliver Last Week R=TonightI’d like everyone I know to watch this clip. (Spoiler Alert… it contains some salty language…) In this video, John Oliver from HBO’s “Last Week Tonight” explains the latest developments in the United Kingdom, a “snap election,” most importantly in regards to Brexit.


Yes, folks, this is a video about something that largely does not affect most Americans on a daily basis. Most of us could not honestly state what we have at stake regarding Brexit, including me. And that’s precisely why I want you to watch it. I wasn’t sure what to think going in. Chances are, you weren’t, either. But it’s an opportunity to look at how some of us get our news and analysis, and it’s illuminating.

Please I beg of you, watch this.

The right wing in the US talks about “fake news” and complains that the left gets its information from fake, silly sources. Condemning major news sources like CNN, MSNBC and others is ridiculous, especially given the blatant, obvious, blatantly obvious, obviously blatant conservative slant of Fox News. But I can sort of see, a tiny bit, how you can toss off our love for Keith Olbermann, Samantha Bee, Trevor Noah, Seth Meyers, or Tom Tomorrow, and (finally what took him so long???) Stephen Colbert. They’re just making a bunch of jokes, right?

So, here is John Oliver explaining something you know or care very little about. It’s funny, it’s ridiculous, and it is… very informative. Deeply informative. You will actually learn a lot from this clip while being entertained. But in the end, it is a thoughtful, in-depth analysis of a news story, one that can’t be summed up in a Tweet. And you might even end up caring about this issue one way or another.

We get the same thing from Olbermann, Bee, Noah, Meyers, Tomorrow, and Colbert. I’d rather sit through a 12-to-20 minute segment of news analysis with jokes than to claim to get my news from 140 characters of incomplete sentences and dubious sources. The takeaway is that an entertaining news source with some jokes and entertainment added can still be a valid, smart, informative place to get your news. And by the way, Olbermann isn’t even trying to be funny anymore. It’s that serious.

I’ve mentioned this before… I do check in with Fox News on a daily basis to see how they spin any major story (spoiler alert… it’s usually the opposite of just about any other source). It hurts my head to do it, but I do it. I really want to understand how some of you came to believe the reality that you sincerely think is real. I’d like you to do the same for me.

Dig deeper. Look at the other side. Spend time thinking instead of being told what to think.

john oliver walrus porn

“Make Hay While the Sun Shines?” No, You Do It, I’m Busy!

hay bales“Make hay while the sun shines.”

No. I’m not falling for that. I do not have the mechanisms nor the facilities to make hay regardless of whether the sun is shining or not. I don’t live on a farm, pal. So get lost with that inspirational quote.

What you’re really trying to do is sucker me into the haymaking business, which is a total pyramid scheme, and a scam. A pyramid scam. A pyramid made of hay. Do you know what happens when you build a pyramid out of hay? The big bad wolf blows the whole thing down with one puff, that’s what happens!

“Oh, well, make small amounts of hay for your own use then.”

“Horsehockey,” I say! I don’t even need hay, except maybe one or two bales a year for my chickens. What am I going to do with all that extra hay? Oh, right I can sell it?

fight clubI don’t need artisanal boutique hay, and you’re not going to buy it from me at the farmers market, either. It’s the same reason I don’t make my own soap. You know what happens when you make your own soap? You end up in a Fight Club, that’s what! Do you have any idea what goes on in a Fight Club?

Do you have any idea how much capital investment you need to get into the haymaking business? Let’s take a look…

Big farm machine

• Big plot of land
• Thresher/Combine/Harvester contraption. Is that one machine, or several?
• Hay seeds.
• A committed work force of respected, fairly-compensated workers.
• Pesticides. Horrible, horrible pesticides. Those aren’t free unless they blow over from your neighbor’s farm.

See, it’s a business scam.

I mean, the storage alone, if I wanted to get into the haymaking business (which I don’t by the way), would be expensive and take way too much space. And how much time does it take? Normally, I would feel inspired to draw comics while I have the opportunity, but now I’m stuck in the haymaking business all day? This is the worst business advice ever. It probably came from some stupid money making system video on VHS that you have to pay for… which is the real way the dude in the video makes money, by selling you these stupid tapes. Do you even have a VCR? You just got played.

With all that’s involved, you might as well say “Refine your own oil products for fun and profit while the sun shines.” Or “Get rich quick by building your own interstellar spaceship.” Bah!

I can just hear the lobbyists from the Haymaking Industrial Complex in Washington, D.C.:

Mr. Big Hayseed: We need to find a way to increase sales of our seeds!
Mr. Big Farm Equipment: And our farm machinery. Sure, our machines look cool and every six year old wants to drive them, but that doesn’t pay the bills!
Mr. Big Farm Real Estate (Yes, these folks are all white, male, cigar-chompers… did you expect otherwise from the people who are trying to sell you out?): And I need to sell more land, especially the kind with hay storage facilities!
Mr. Bigly “President”: I just invented this expression, this hugely big expression, “Make hay while the sun shines.” Have you heard it before? I just made it up. I used the best words.
Mr. Big Hayseed: Perfect! We’ll use that as our slogan! Here’s our checks!
Mr. Big Pesticide: Can I pay slightly less than you guys? I’ve already spent a lot on contributions, and I’m kinda tapped out at the moment.

And there it is. You have been bought and sold and processed and consumed by Big Hay. Well, I’m not falling for it.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to kick back and binge watch Netflix all day. Those shows aren’t going to watch themselves.

Goodbye to Some of My “Friends”

trump bibleI said goodbye to some old friends in the past few days.

By “friends” I mean they were friends on Facebook. And by “said goodbye,” I mean I just hit the “unfriend” button and moved on. No explanation needed, although in the unfriending process, the explanation becomes invisible anyway.

I only joined Facebook reluctantly several years ago, when my high school graduating class was planning a reunion. By joining, I was instantly reconnected with a lot of folks from my past. Some were dear friends I hadn’t talked to in years. Some were people I barely knew, but that was cool. Many reminded me of why I had moved on with my life and not looked back much in the first place.

As it turns out, I didn’t even go to that reunion. I haven’t been back to my home town in over ten years, in fact. Hmmm.

It seems that after looking at their posts and seeing their photos and arguing over things both petty and important, I saw the need to begin culling some of them from the list. It’s a wonder more of them didn’t unfriend me first. I can be somewhat… abrasive, I’ll admit. But in getting to know them again, it became obvious… They had changed. I had changed, too. After while, I hate to say it, it became too much work to hang onto what was left of the strings that once tied us together. It’s nothing personal. But I have things I need to do and so do they. It’s okay to move on.

On the other hand, some of them turned out be kindred spirits in ways I never would have imagined, and I came to regret not knowing them better along the way. That’s been fun.

The election of 2008 happened just before I jumped on the Faceblogs. But by the time the election of 2012 rolled around, it brought irreconcilable differences to light. Major friendship test right there. And yet, I stayed friends with a lot of people who voted differently from me, who believed differently from me, because at least they weren’t gloating tools about it.

Sadly, the election of 2016 was the last straw. After eight years of putting up with the unrelenting barbs against what I believed in, I did some final fine tuning. I unfriended a lot of folks during the primaries for both parties (and several dispatched with me as well). And as election day approached, I could not believe what some of these folks were posting (and vice versa, I’m sure). The day after the election was sheer carnage. But today, as the orange one was officially sworn in, I could not take it any more. I thought the purge was complete from both ends. I tried to stay off the Faceblogs. And yet… there were arguments. There were people telling me to get over it, people telling me to ignore all that animosity towards the last president, people telling me to suck it up and be nice.

Nope, sorry, that’s too big a fence to mend at the moment. Might even be a border wall, if you think about it.

I can have respectful conversations with people if that respect goes both ways. But more and more, that’s not been the case. (And again, I must reiterate, I have become less tolerant of those who are not tolerant of my tolerances. Sorry.) If I ever see some of these folks again in the real world, maybe we’ll sit down and talk. Maybe we’ll laugh at old times. We can still be friends in real life. But I don’t want to be friends with your online persona. I don’t want to see your unresearched memes or your links to parts of the web that make my skin crawl.

Just because we have a history doesn’t mean we need to have a present. Or a future. It’s nothing personal. Maybe we’ll be friends again. Or at least “friends.” Dunno. (“Shrug” emoticon.)

This is where I get off. This is where I leave you. You know how to reach me, but do you know how to reach out to me?

Ron’s Manifesto : Agree or Move On

I like you. At least I want to like you. But we need to see eye to eye on some things. I would hope you and I agree on at least most of this stuff. If we don’t, we should no longer remain friends, because this is core stuff in my head. Goodbye in advance if you disagree with my Manifesto .

stevia is yuckyStevia is awful. I would rather eat food that is super unsweet, or suffer the bad health consequences of real sugar, or take a bath in a tub full of the pink fake sugar, or drink a gallon of high-fructose corn syrup, than to even be in the same aisle at the grocery store with this stuff. You know this to be true.

Black licorice is better than red licorice.

I don’t like fennel. Food that tastes like licorice, but is in fact not licorice, is bad.

Except for sausage. Fennel is often found in sausage. Sausage is good.

kardashiansWhat I know and/or care about the Kardashians could be engraved on a grain of rice in very large type. They should not matter to you, either.

To shake things up at sporting events, we should occasionally sing the Preamble to the Constitution from “Schoolhouse Rock” before games.

hockey ballThere are too many bowl games in college football. They should get rid of most of them and keep these:
• Rose Bowl.
• Sugar Bowl.
• Cotton Bowl.
• Citrus/Orange Bowl (those are redundant, so combine them and let four teams play a round robin, one quarter per pair, for a total of six ten-minute quarters. You know you’d watch that!).
• Peach Bowl.
• Cereal Bowl because that should totally be a thing, because that was funny to me as a kid and will never be not funny.
• Toilet Bowl, which is kind of like the Cereal Bowl, but was like a hundred times funnier to my seven-year-old self. I drew a cartoon about it once, probably.
• Amos Alonzo Stagg Bowl because it has the coolest name.
•And bring back the Beef ‘O’ Brady’s Bowl, but send the two teams who were the biggest disappointments that season and shower them with scorn and humiliation… and rancid beef probably, I don’t know.
Even after looking at this very short list, doesn’t the world “Bowl” seem kind of stupid looking and weird sounding? I rest my case. Too many of them.

Speaking of quarters, if you said “there can’t be six quarters in a game, there can only be four quarters,” then I shall reply, “fee and foo, behold what was in my pocket! Six quarters!”
Speaking of speaking of quarters, there should be exactly two designs allowed on the back of United States 25-cent coins: The 1976 Bicentennial one with the with the fife and drum corps, and the other regular one, which has an eagle on the moon or something. I can’t remember exactly what it looks like, because, and I cannot stress this enough… THERE ARE TOO MANY STUPID DESIGNS ON THE BACK OF OUR MONEY! If you wanted to make counterfeit coins, why copy an existing design when you can just put Chester Cheetah or some other spokescharacter on there? Who would notice? Seems legit.

Same thing with pennies: Two designs: the one with the wheat and the one with the Parthenon from Nashville.

el camino
Everyone secretly wants to drive an El Camino. If you say you don’t, you are living a lie, and I can’t abide by liars.

So, are we cool?

This is a test of the Ron Blogcasting System

No, seriously, this is just an experimental post to see if this is working. Just testing to make sure links work, too. This is a test of the Ron Blogcasting System

Love that costume! Oh, good, the captions work!

Random thoughts I borrowed from somethere to test how well this works… Some ad wants me to enter my last name to discover its origin. It’s “Cockroach.” It’s a giant disgusting bug. I’m not proud of it, but I’m not ashamed of it. It’s just who I am. Oh, and I crawled all over your waffle iron last night. Hope you washed it before you made breakfast. Actaully, I am kind of proud.

I watched a lot of sports on TV this weekend. Such wonderful displays of physicality and athleticism. There was some good sportsmaniciousness and effortation as well. I felt a sense of excitementalotomy while witnessing the competitionosity.

Great. Now that “Starbucks’ December holiday festival of no particular denomination” have leaked, we can now speculate on whether the War on Christmas has begun. By the way, I hope they don’t really leak. That would be messy.

Thanks for not reading this post.