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LAUGH LINES

Punch Lines

May 16, 1997

Sic Transit: The Polish shipyard where the Solidarity union was born is being converted into a discotheque. "Who would have guessed disco would outlast communism?" (Cutler Daily Scoop)

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How You Know You Are in Los Angeles: Ellen DeGeneres is reportedly unhappy with ABC, claiming that it hasn't promoted her show enough since the coming out episode. "No wonder. The PR machine was in overdrive so long, it probably blew up." (Daily Scoop)

About that tourist from Denmark who was arrested for leaving her toddler outside in a stroller while she ate in a Manhattan restaurant: "That could never happen in L.A.," says Bob Mills. "Leave a baby stroller outside of a restaurant here, and the valet will park it."

As a symbol of gratitude to jurors, this week Los Angeles County Court officials have handed each new juror a certificate honoring them. "On the back, there's a listing of literary agents." (Jenny Church)

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In the News: Researchers say they have calculated the annual worth of Mother Nature's services to humanity at $16 trillion to $54 trillion annually. "Now Bill Gates wants to buy Earth." (Alex Pearlstein)

* "That figures in the total value of all water, lumber, fish, game and recreational areas," says Argus Hamilton. "God had it appraised for a possible Disney sale."

Anti-liquor activists are fighting the distilled spirits industry over TV advertising. "But everything's for sale in the '90s," says Hamilton. "It's only a matter of time before Big Bird is replaced by Wild Turkey."

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Travel Time: According to USA Today, only 43% of summer travelers plan to take their children with them. "As a public service audio cassettes will be made available with a continuous loop of 'Are we there yet?' " (Cutler Online Prep)

In a survey of frequent fliers, Continental Airlines was rated the best for long flights. "It was No. 2 on short flights and came in 50th on finding the right airport." (Earl Hochman)

Airlines are cutting Memorial Day weekend fares to record lows. "There are some restrictions though," says Mills. "You must have been born in a leap year, own a pet that can obey at least eight commands and have once owned an Edsel."

Reader Lisa Takeguma of Newbury Park took her 5-year-old daughter, Brooke, to a Dodger game where she was fascinated by the crowd, vendors, food, using the binoculars. After a few innings, Takeguma asked Brooke if she was enjoying the game.

"What game?" asked Brooke.

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