THE POT README This is the face page for miscellaneous essays. It’s the pot into which is thrown everything that doesn't fit into the other categories -- the potpourri. Now if that isn’t an invitation to pun what is? Around here everything is. Herein are miscellaneous essays about everything from planning a house (really an excuse to hold forth on modernism and postmodernism) to naming a cat (an excuse to talk about that cat), to Coonhilde, a pun-name for a coon. Plus some stories, which maybe are essays that took on a life of their own, with dialog. The first essay is entitled "POTpourri." It follows this box. Actually it started out to be the introduction to these essays but in the first sentence it went awry. Now then --


Pot.  They’re all for it – What a crazy mélange of bedfellows, those pot activists, from Ron Paul to Pat “Pot” Robertson to Tommy Chong to Carl "Choom" Sagan, to our ruefully elected Choom-in-Chief; they’re all for it.  I’m fist-bangingly against it.


Me, I’ve never come near the stuff.  Not even tobacco, even when it was in like Flynn.  Puns are my personal addiction.  Needing no pharmacological kick, my puns are straight from my head held high.  I cherish a good pun more than a hot cross bun, although the other kind of bun, essential to running and ogling, is still a runner up. Never is this geezer giddier than when strumming puns.


I’m so old I remember when a pun was the social touché.  Now, passé.  Nowadays pot is the epiphany, especially in San Francisco and Denver, and easier to come by, as easy to come by as cupcakes and more celebrated.  Here, have a potted cupcake!  When was the last time you puffed a good pun?


Pot I eschew, but as a pun I’m not above rolling it – pot…. POTpourri.  'Tis apt that such a pun be so unreal.  Only when rolled upon paper, and read, does it work.  Taken to mouth, and pronounced, it's gone in a puff of smoke -- POpourEE.  All gone pot.  And good riddance.


How’s that for a lead-in for a potpourri of essays, a stew, a soss, a macedoine, that is to say miscellany?


Pure pun abuse, is what it is, puffing pot and potpourri as pun, with alliteration as adulteration, as bad as it gets even in this demesne (domain).  Pot is legal like gay nups, but should that pun be?  I’d take a poll – blog pot polls are the rage nowadays -- but I didn’t install the vote module (multiple choice, radio buttons) on my site, and this isn’t a blog.


Speaking of puns, did you know that using the word “pot” for marijuana is almost a pun?  “The word came into use in America in the late 1930s. It is a shortening of the Spanish potiguaya or potaguaya that came from potación de guaya, a wine or brandy in which marijuana buds have been steeped. It literally means ‘the drink of grief.’”1


Way too much about pot, even as pun.  Sorry I brought it up.  What’s a nice octogenarian doing with a joint like that?  But would you have read this far if the heading said “Miscellaneous essays”?  But now that you have read this far, I’m quitting it cold turkey, right now.  Pot, not puns.  I'll never surrender my pearl-handled puns.


But puns are in danger, seriously.  I'm not making this up.  After every mass killing -- the latest being in a theater showing the premier of a Batman movie, by a near-PhD in neurosciences named Holmes (not Oliver or Sherlock) -- this society, mistakenly convinced that controlling everything will bring in utopia, seems hellbent on ... pun control.  A pun is a weapon, guaranteed for citizens by the 2nd Amendment, itself under incessant bombardment.  It can't hold out much longer.  Pot is in less danger.  It is protected by the Constitution, under the 1st Amendment (Freedom of Expression).


Sounds like an essay in there somewhere.  I’ll work on it.  “In Praise of Puns” or “Puns I have loved.”  Hey, I’ve already written it; this is it.


But seriously, folks, what my soul really wants to write about is how movies -- yes, you, Hollywood -- ruins the brains of even, perhaps especially, neuroscientists, rendering reality and virtual reality indistinguishable.  It's all special effects, everything is, even, perhaps especially, the TV news coverage of either Batman the movie or the killing, likewise the theater where it started and the court where it ends up.


But if pot is vapor and movies are e-reality, and the dollar is going up in smoke, the pun stands eternal like the rock of Gibraltar as all else crumbles.  Maybe.


Meanwhile, if this has turned out to be my tone poem to fun with puns, it’s just the tag end.  I’ve given puns the short shrift, considering how many, in my years and years of living, that I’ve experienced. They still give me the highs and the hives.  But I couldn't begin to compile an anthology of them.  I'll just recite this one I remember from my once-adored now-abhorred TIME magazine, once a cache of golden puns, now of leaden liberalism. It was from a movie review of an Esther Williams movie – remember Esther Williams and all her splashing flicks?  TIME dismissed it as just so much water over the dame.


But the all-time great pun has only just now appeared on the street:  “Yes we cannabis.” Too bad TIME missed it.


After that one any others would be a let-down.  Enough bleating around the tosh.  All things considered, and moving right along from Tommy Chong to Alice in Wonderland, the time has come to talk of many other things, of cabbages and kings, shoes and ships and sealing wax, of walrus and carpenter -- a pun-encumbered potpourri.










Wesley Kime