Today’s Writing

One of the tricks I use when writing is to scan the newspaper for catch phrases and/or idioms I can twist around for gags.

Today, went quicker than most (about a half hour for four gags), and I thought with the extra time I’d show you how it went:


I just sorta scribble down words and phrases as I find them, and then go back to the paper for more.  As I’m reading and scribbling, stuff ferments a little and ideas start coming:

  • "Job Security" is one I’ve done a lot with, so no surprise that there’s nothing there today.
  • "Sexual Tension" for some reason brought out the Sidney Harris is me.  I thought it would be funny to have sexual tension as part of some sort of complicated formula.  A little later I thought of the male and female symbols, and it all sort of fell together.
  • "Legal Maneuvers" brought the Heimlich maneuver to mind, and although it took a little to whittle down the caption, I think it worked out nicely.
  • "High Profile" wrote itself, and I have no idea why my sketch of a man in profile includes a ponytail.
  • "Track Record" was percolating for a bit with a man interviewing in track shoes, but it never really materialized.
  • "Boxed Wines" went nowhere fast.
  • "Hall Czar" came from a headline about a "Telecom Czar."  "War Czar" is abuzz right now, so I thought taking it down to a kid’s level would be a good way to poke some fun.  It ended up a little more political and topical than I like to get, but it is what it is.

Here are the gags rewritten for further marinating in the ol’ idea box:


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