[Author’s note: For maximum effect, this article is intended to be read at a fast pace, preferably with a thick New Jersey mobster accent. – TEJ]
THE FOLLOWING IS A PAID COMMERCIAL FROM MARVIN GUERKIN, ATTORNEY AT LAW
You’re probably asking yourself, “Hey, isn’t that a photo of the attorney in the TV show, Breaking Bad and Better Call Saul?” to which I say, “What’s your point?”
Hi, friend. I’m Marvin Guerkin. And I want to be YOUR lawyer. In a pickle? Guerkin is your man!
Here’s a question: Has this ever happened to you?
You notice your garbage disposal isn’t working, so you call a plumber. He takes a look and, wiping his hands on your wife’s favorite dish towel, says it’ll cost ya’ $1,800 to replace the defective disposal. You start stressin’ out about the cost, so you light up a cigarette, nervously flicking the ashes to the floor, Suddenly, ashes from your cigarette set that dish towel (which the plumber carelessly tossed on the floor) on fire, which triggers the smoke detector. That freaks out your German Shepherd Hercules, who then bolts out the front door, which you forgot to close when you let the plumber in.
You chase after Hercules, bumping into a stone table in the foyer, knocking over your priceless heirloom lamp dating back to the Ming Dynasty, which you had appraised on Antiques Roadshow for $9,700, but which now is just a pile of shattered ceramic. Your toddler, Marvin Junior, grabs a broken piece and scarfs it down, because, well, he’s a two-year-old, and all two-year-olds are idiots.
You remember that the lamp had lead paint, so you rush Junior to the ER to have his stomach pumped. In your panic, you run a stop sign, and get pulled over by Officer Cooper, who looks like he hasn’t done a push-up since the Nixon administration. Anyhoo, he issues you a ticket for reckless driving, having an expired license, and not strapping your kid into the child seat. You tell him to “Have a good day” and he thinks you’re being flip, so he orders you out of the car. You swear up and down that you haven’t been drinking (in truth you had barely more than three or four martinis). He runs your license plate and discovers four unpaid violations, which you never told your wife about.
Before you know it, you’re in the back of a cop car, headed for the 9th Precinct Station. Your phone rings and you see it’s your wife. With your hands cuffed, you fumble to answer the call. Immediately, your better half starts shouting, “Where the hell is Marvin Junior?” – which is when you realize that he’s still crawling around in the back of your car, which is parked in an abandoned lot on 36th and Broadway. Your wife is now screaming that the kitchen has gone up in flames! And the fire department is desperately trying to douse the flames which have now engulfed your entire house. Meanwhile nobody can locate your cat Buttons, not to mention Hercules.
Well, if this sounds familiar, why not give me, Marvin Guerkin, Attorney at Law, a call – any time day or night – between 2 and 4pm. But don’t call on Wednesdays (I’m at the races) or Fridays (I’m at the black jack table at Caesars). In a pickle? Guerkin’s your man!
I got another question: Has this ever happened to you?
You’re on your riding mower, mowing your lawn, just minding your own business, when your neighbor starts shouting at you about God knows what. You can’t hear him because you’ve got headphones on, listening to Vic Damone at full volume. He keeps shouting, but you ignore him, because, frankly, he’s kind of an annoying dweeb, obsessively fussing about his stupid garden.
So, he keeps on shouting until finally he rudely taps you on the shoulder, and you take off your head phones, and he screams, “Dude, what the f*ck are you doing? You just mowed down my prize-winning rose bushes!” – prompting you to make a hilarious comment about how real men go fishing, not play around in flower gardens, which oddly he does not find nearly as funny as you do – maybe it was in your delivery. Anyway, then he shoves you, leaving you no choice but to hop back on your mower to plow through his hydrangeas.
Before you can turn his nasturtiums into mulch, your neighbor, for some inexplicable reason, starts smashing the windshield of your 2007 Toyota Corolla with a golf club – using a Callaway driver at that – wow, he’s not thinking straight! I would have used a 9 iron. Technically it’s your wife’s car, so it’s not that big a deal. Still, defending her honor, you decide to take quick action to de-escalate the situation, which you do by driving your wife’s Corolla into his brand new 2019 Lexus, totaling his front end – and hers.
Then in what, if you ask me, is a major over-reaction, he calls the cops, who come to the scene, and it turns out to be the same Officer Cooper who pulled you over for running a stop sign, and well, you end up back at the 9th Precinct Station – again. And their coffee is just as bad as last time.
If this sounds like the kind of innocent mix-ups you sometimes stumble into, then call me, Marvin Guerkin, Attorney at Law. No lawyer is better at springing you out of the joint and suing your neighbor into bankruptcy than me.
So, what are you waiting for? Call me, MARVIN GUERKIN. In a pickle? Guerkin is your man!
MARVIN GUERKIN – The lawyer to call when ethical attorneys just aren’t up to the job!
[Disclaimer: Marvin Guerkin has been disbarred from practicing law in the following jurisdictions: Nevada, California, Florida, and Puerto Rico – oh, and Guam. He currently has a restraining order preventing him from being within 500 feet of anyone under the age of 21 or over 70. But he expects it to be thrown out on appeal. Please do not google “lawsuits against Marvin Guerkin” unless you plan to stay up all night. Mr. Guerkin requires payment in full upfront, cash, no checks. Payment in the form of luxury suite stays at Caesar’s Vegas is also acceptable.]
That’s the view from the bleachers. Perhaps I’m off base.
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Check out my latest humor book: YOU’RE GROUNDED FOR LIFE: Misguided Parenting Strategies That Sounded Good at the Time
© Tim Jones, View from the Bleachers 2019
Two famous British Generals from the Revolutionary War were General John Burgoyne and General William Howe. They were going to join forces in the Battle of Saratoga to quash the rebels. Things did not quite work out as planned.
Editor’s Note: VFTB’s crack team of researchers and military historians has uncovered a never-before-seen collection of letters between two heroic British generals who served nobly during the American Revolutionary War: General John Burgoyne and General William Howe. (Yes, they are actual historical figures.)
This sampling of correspondence describes their strategy to defeat the rebellious colonials at the Battle of Saratoga in the fall of 1777.
While some may question the authenticity of these letters, (which I find astonishing), the circumstances around the build-up to this historic battle, which played a pivotal role in turning the tide of the Revolutionary War, are essentially true. – TEJ
17 August 1777
To My Esteemed Comrade, General Howe,
It has been a long, arduous passage from our wilderness encampment in the Canadian territory. But it is with great pride that I share the news of our brilliant victory over those scoundrel rebels of New York colony, as the King’s brave young soldiers clashed with those ruffians and overwhelmed their defenses at Fort Ticonderoga. As the sun sets, the colours of His Majesty King George’s Kingdom of Great Britain wave proudly against the smoke-filled skies.
I remain confident our plan to join forces, yours from the south and mine from the north, on the fertile plains of Saratoga will cut off those groggy, ill-mannered hooligan colonials from their New England brethren, thus ensuring for the two of us the highest honour. Perhaps a knighthood shall be in order, ol’ chum?
Long live our King.
General John Burgoyne
(P.S. my faithful wife Catherine, Duchess of Strathmore, enjoyed your jovial demeanor at our last encounter and asks of your wellbeing.)
31 August 1777
To My Noble Servant of Our King, My Esteemed, General Burgoyne,
It has been nigh to a fortnight since your correspondence informing me of your glorious victory over those vulgar plowboys of New York colony. Alas, I am still tethered to our encampment here along the banks of the Delaware, betwixt the shores of Philadelphia and Camden, seeking provisions and reinforcements. As soon as they arrive, it will be with the swiftest alacrity that I shall decamp and reconnoiter my forces to rendezvous with your fine men on the fields of Saratoga, where, God and the King be willing, we shall prevail and vanquish those pesky rabble-rousers, thus bringing to a rightful conclusion this senseless spillage of tea in our harbors. I shall send word of my impending arrival and look forward to joining forces before the next full moon.
Yours in the Service of our King,
General William Howe
(P.S. That is kind of the fair Duchess Catherine to ask. Pass on to your lovely wife, I am solid of spirits, except for of an odd rash of late. Do say, will the fair duchess’s carriage be following you south with each undoubted triumph?) Continue reading “A Tale of Two Brities” »
[The following text exchange took place between a female business executive named Roxanne and her boyfriend of four years, Virgil, a high school English teacher.]
Roxanne: Dear Virgil, I gotta tell you something and it’s been on my mind for a long time.
Virgil: Good evening, Roxanne. Thank you for your text. By the way, “gotta” is not proper English. I believe you meant to say, “I must” or “I have to.” What’s up?
Roxanne: We need 2 talk.
Virgil: You errantly used the digit “2” as in one more than one. So, you’ve lost me. We need “one plus one talk?” That makes no sense. Please clarify.
Roxanne: Oh, for God’s sake, Virgil. 2 is short for “to.” We need TO talk. I cant wait any longer.
Virgil: Sorry, still not clear on what you’re trying to convey – unless you mean “no, I can’t” in which case, don’t forget the apostrophe since it’s a contraction.
Roxanne: Geez. Okay. Got it.
Virgil: Who’s got what? “Got it” is missing a subject. Who has it? A policeman? The Queen of England? My schnauzer? My brain buzzes with possibilities. Could you clarify who it is that has it and what specifically does he or she have?
Roxanne: Jesus, Virgil. I’m talking about US. We need to talk about US.
Virgil: Capitalizing the letters US only makes sense if you’re referring to our country. But even then, technically you should put periods after the letters since it’s an abbreviation for United States.
Roxanne: Virgil, focus. For the millionth time, I don’t need another syntax lesson.
Virgil: I believe you mean “another grammar” lesson. Syntax is about word order. Your mistake was –
Roxanne: My MISTAKE was taking four freakin’ years to tell you what I should have told you four years ago. It’s over. Continue reading “Breaking up with an English Teacher” »
Lately, I’ve been carrying a heavy burden that I need to get off my chest. There are many things I feel guilty about, and I just have to come clean about them to my loyal readers – all eleven of you. In the spirit of Stephen Colbert’s Midnight Confessions, I have decided to make my own public confessions to all who care to listen.
[NOTE: Before reading my heartfelt confessions below, please turn up the volume of your speakers, then click on this link, skip past the commercial and wait about four seconds, after which you’ll hear some appropriate background confessional music. Then return to this page to read my confessions. God bless you, my friend.]
Sometimes I can be a bit lazy. Like when my wife asks me to clean the sheets of the guest bedroom after our most recent visitors have left, I will say “Absolutely, honey” but then I’ll simply pull the bed covers over the sheets without changing them.
Sometimes I will tell my neighbor that his lawn looks great, when secretly, deep down in my heart, I know it doesn’t. It really needs to be weeded.
I’m not proud of this, but recently, when I played golf with my buddies, I told the guy keeping score that I got an 9 on the par-3 eleventh hole, when really I got a 10.
When donating food to the homeless, there have been times when instead of putting the Girl Scout Thin Mints cookies in the donation bag, I’ll put in graham crackers. Because I don’t particularly care for graham crackers – unless they’re the cinnamon ones, in which case I’ll probably keep them, too.
Continue reading “My Confession to My Readers” »
Author’s note: Since it’s almost Valentine’s Day, I thought I would celebrate with a true story about love and romance. Sometimes you never know when or where love will find you, as this story proves. Their names have been changed out of respect for their privacy but the story is exactly what happened. – tej]
“Pardon me, sir. But do you play bridge?” That’s how it all started. A simple question, posed by a middle-aged woman to a complete stranger. To be more specific, Beth was emboldened to ask this question in Aisle 7 of the grocery store, somewhere between the shampoo section and men’s shaving cream.
“Um, well, uh, yeah, I do”, stammered the elderly man, confused by the query and not sure why this mysterious woman was accosting him in the middle of a store. His name was Ed – a kindly fellow, well into his 80s, with a warm, jovial smile. He was just minding his own business. But Beth was not finished. “My mother plays bridge. Would you like to meet my mother sometime?”
More stammering. More confusion. Mixed with an extra helping of embarrassment. Ed was caught in a deer-in-the-headlights moment. He had no idea what the correct answer was to this audacious inquiry. So, being the gentleman that he was, and not wanting to offend this lady in Aisle 7, he replied, in his noticeably southern drawl, “I dunno. Well, um, I guess that would be ahhhlrahhht.”
Apparently by “sometime,” Beth meant NOW. Because before Ed had time to ask her name, she was on the phone with her mom. “Mom, meet Ed. Ed, meet my mom, Margaret.” And then she handed the phone to Ed and walked away. Suddenly there were now two deer caught in the headlights – and neither of them knew what to say. Margaret wanted to say, “Beth, why are you trying to embarrass me? Hang up this phone this instant!” But Margaret was raised to be polite and instead told Ed, “What a pleasure it is to make your acquaintance,” hoping this awkward situation would be over quickly, never to be discussed again.
Continue reading “A Valentine Story – Love and Romance in Aisle 7” »
[The following is an approximate re-telling of a recent traffic stop I had with local law enforcement for a moving violation. The events of my run-in all happened exactly as described below. Well, almost exactly.]
It was 7:22 am on a Wednesday. I was driving northbound on Main Highway like I always did this time of week. But this time, there was a problem. I was running late for my regular Wednesday meet-up with a buddy of mine. Let’s call him Terry, because, well, that’s his name. Terry was waiting for me at our regular rendezvous, a place called Terry’s Corner (honest). My buddy Terry is a big deal in this small town. But Terry was going to have to wait. Because, like I said, I was running late.
I knew I shouldn’t have downed half a six-pack of Mountain Dew Live Wire first thing in the morning. My heart rate was through the roof as I raced down the highway in my silver Toyota minivan, desperately trying to make up time. I saw the speed limit sign. It read 50 mph, just like it always read this time of day. Some things never change. I looked in my rear view mirror. Drivers were climbing up on my tail. Okay, not literally my tail. I don’t have a tail. It’s just a figure of speech. Maybe I was just imagining things, but it looked like the guy behind me wanted to run me over. My heart started pounding. My palms got clammy. I could barely hold onto the steering wheel.
My mind buzzed with all the things I had to do today. Little did I know that my agenda was about to take a major U-turn – because just as I was writing the previous sentence, I zoomed past a parked trooper. In that instant, the cop pulled onto the highway, flashed his lights, and started in hot pursuit.
Continue reading “You Have the Right to Remain Silent – My Recent Run-in with the Law” »