Originally created 11/17/00

Don't trust everything you read

There are two rules for success.

First, never tell everything you know.

- Roger H. Lincoln

Have you ever had someone tell you something slightly unusual, and while you're standing there staring at them, they say, "But I read it in the paper."

The other day I got a call from a woman who wanted me to write something saying that eating turkey makes you sleepy.

"You probably think I'm crazy," she said.

(Good manners prevent quick acknowledgement to such suggestions.)

"I'm sorry," I answered gently, "but I don't know anything about the chemical composition of turkey."

I vaguely remembered some study a few years ago that seemed to corroborate her claim, so I suggested she call a nutritionist, or perhaps a home economist.

She did not want to.

"But people won't believe me unless you write it and put it in the paper. Then I can show them," she said.

Again, I declined her invitation.

She grew irritated and said she was just going to have to call the TV station, then hung up.

I'm not sure what she expected.

Perhaps all she wanted was something like this:

WASHINGTON - U.S. scientists confirmed today that eating turkey makes you sleepy.

"Most people enjoying a Thanksgiving meal next week will notice how everyone wants a nap after eating," said a smart scientist.

"You've got that right," another smart scientist agreed.

Tests show that turkey meat contains an oversupply of the sominexide enzyme that triggers drowsiness. The discovery also explains why turkeys often seem lethargic and stupid.

"This is the same enzyme released when you watch TV after 8 p.m.," said a really, really smart government scientist. "And because this is in the paper, everyone will believe us."

The other scientists would have agreed with him, but they had nodded off.

MAILBAG: Sandra and Shirley Johnson of Augusta send postcard greetings from Las Vegas.

And Carol and Don say they finally made it to Yosemite National Park in California.

"We finally made it," they write. "It's a beautiful park and the crowds have thinned out considerably."

TODAY'S JOKE: This one comes from Everett Fernandez.

The boy came skipping into the house with a big lollipop in his hands.

"Where did you get that?" his mother asked.

"I bought it with the nickel you gave me," he said.

"That nickel I gave you was for Sunday school," the irritated mom said.

"I know, Mom," said the boy, "but the minister met me at the door and got me in free."

Reach Bill Kirby at (706) 868-1222, Ext. 107.


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