If your feet are happy, you’ll be happy

By Steele Coddington | February 24, 2010

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steelSome time ago, to make a more valuable contribution to education and the students who read this carefully written expression of virtue and forceful endorsement of the Judeo-Christian principles of the Rule of Law, my advisors decided we should focus more frequently on populist issues like fashion, health or sex. The feedback from colleges suggested rather emphatically that we should forget fashion and health and concentrate on sex. The therapists on my staff, one of whom is my dog Arbuckle, couldn’t understand the students’ enthusiastic obsession with everything associated with that one word and all it conjured up. Silly nerds! (Not you, Arbuckle!)

Having been students ourselves once or twice in college, many of my friends and neighbors spoke convincingly with the credibility of experience that students, since the dawn of time, have always interpreted sex as an extra-curricular college activity. Extra-curricular meaning, of course, not in the classroom, and as frequently as possible, since the experience, though ephemeral, is considered of lasting educational value, or at worst a temporary sporting event. But good grief, our intent in even mentioning the word was simply to provide guidance on individual physical and mental health issues for each gender, not to create an exercise in fantasyland or a 101 course in the subject for the deprived, starved or curious.

For example, our female physical therapists, as good will ambassadors promoting sensible health practices, suggest that women should rebel against wearing high heels or sandals. Prolonged wear of either causes bad backs, painful necks and ultimately may be responsible for knee or hip replacements. Many unmarried high heel wearers, male or female, suffer from a psychologically diminished ability to evaluate whether proposals of marriage are genuine, a hit for a one night stand, or a trick to borrow money. They also find it difficult to locate the bathroom at night or tip toe through the proverbial Tiny Tim Tulips.

It’s well known that women who use their high heels as hammers have trouble recognizing claw or ball peen hammers and make lousy carpenters, but excellent kick-boxers. And sandals may be even worse for foot health because they cause inadvertent downward-gripping by the toes that not only can rupture toe tendons, but in later life compels gossiping and excessive use of the exclamation, “Oh, my foot.” It’s also been as reliably researched as global warming, that many women who wear sandals and high heels tend to resent men and refer to them as “no good heels” or Tiny Tims.”

Whatever! Really want to know what promotes good health? According to a study by Columbia University scientists, reported in Investors Business Daily, the happiest people were 22 percent less likely to develop heart disease than people in the middle of the negative-positive emotional scale. Be happy – drink a Starbucks today or pet my dog Arbuckle, but don’t wear high heels!

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First lines of bad novels

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For all lovers of good writing, here are this year's winners of the Bulwer-Lytton contest, (aka "It Was a dark and Stormy Night" Contest) run by the English Department of San Jose State University, wherein one writes only the first line of a bad novel.

10. As a scientist, Throckmorton knew that if he were ever to break wind in the echo chamber, he would never hear the end of it.
9. Just beyond the narrows, the river widens.
8. With a curvaceous figure that Venus would have envied, a tanned unblemished oval face framed with lustrous thick brown hair, deep azure-blue eyes fringed with long black lashes, perfect teeth that vied for competition, and a small straight nose, Marilee had a beauty that defied description.
7. Andre, a simple peasant, had only one thing on his mind as he crept along the East wall: "Andre creep ... Andre creep ... Andre creep."
6. Stanislaus Smedley, a man always on the cutting edge of narcissism, was about to give his body and soul to a back alley sex-change surgeon to become the woman he loved.
5. Although Sarah had an abnormal fear of mice, it did not keep her from eeking out a living at a local pet store.
4. Stanley looked quite bored and somewhat detached, but then penguins often do.
3. Like an over-ripe beefsteak tomato rimmed with cottage cheese, the corpulent remains of Santa Claus lay dead on the hotel floor.
2. Mike Hardware was the kind of private eye who didn't know the meaning of the word fear; a man who could laugh in the face of danger and spit in the eye of death – in short, a moron with suicidal tendencies.
And the winner is…
1. The sun oozed over the horizon, shoved aside darkness, crept along the greensward, and, with sickly fingers, pushed through the castle window, revealing the pillaged princess, hand at throat, crown asunder, gaping in frenzied horror at the sated, sodden amphibian lying beside her, disbelieving the magnitude of the frog's deception, screaming madly, "You lied!"