the revised devil's dictionary

B b

bagpipe n Originally made from bladders (don’t ask) with hollow sticks thrust into them, this alleged musical instrument is primarily associated with Gaelic activities not specifically outlawed by the Geneva Convention. These loopholes are in the process of being closed but until agreement is reached over more substantive issues like universal dress codes for really ugly people, little progress will be made.

bald adj An inverse Mohawk.

bankruptcy n Legal justification by corporations for the theft of millions of dollars via cancelled contracts with workers. See United Airlines. See Delta. See Delphi.

banshee n Gaelic folkloric spirit reputed to forecast the death of a family member by wailing in no known key. Musicologists have long suspected that the terrifying dearth of banshees during the 11th century in both present day Scotland and Ireland, was the impetus for the invention of the bagpipes. The theory seems to have some validity, since it’s primarily based on the supposition that anything you get used to, no matter how horrible, is missed if no longer available. No other known event in Western European history is sufficiently cataclysmic to explain the invention of the bagpipe.

basic black n Fashion term which states that everything goes well with black, even bloodstains. Currently, it’s the fashion choice of wild rebels who call themselves goths and people heavily into pierced body parts.

beaver n 1: A large, serious North American rodent with engineering aspirations. Most of their engineering feats, such as dams, don’t look very imposing unless one has the misfortune to try to remove one permanently. Settlers who have attempted to not only remove a beaver dam but keep it from recurring, insist that the spelling of the word is damn. 2: The state mascot of Oregon. Oregon has covertly managed to corner the market on geophysical features named for this particular critter. For example, there are 6 different Beaver Creeks in Lincoln County, Oregon. Lest you think that’s something peculiar to Lincoln County, one should also note that Lane County (city of note, Eugene), and Douglas County (city of note, Drain) both tie Lincoln with 6 different Beaver Creeks each. According to the USGS, there are a grand total of 62 Beaver Creeks in the entire state. The real reason Oregon is called the Beaver State isn’t because the state had so many beavers. It’s because the first 289 settlers in the territory only knew how to spell 11 words and beaver happened to be one of them.

belief n The filter through which one's prejudice is enshrined as truth. See any or all of the Bush family politicians.

benevolent adj Any action that accidentally and unwittingly aids some person of lower social rank than oneself. During the Middle Ages, this was called noblesse oblige while today, it’s called poor planning. See malevolent.

BFMI abbr Coined by science fiction writer Roger Zelazny as the method of construction of the great pyramids of Egypt. Stands for Brute Force and Massive Ignorance.

bias n 1: My reasoned judgment. 2: Your mindless prejudice.

big-boned adj Fabulously wealthy tent-sized women. See fat, obese.

bigamy n The illegal marriage of a fool, a fraud, and a fornicator. You guess which is which. See polygamy, polyandry, or better yet, a shrink.

bigoted adj Any tilt other than parallel to oneself.

bipartisan adj Taking bribes from either side of the aisle.

Black Peter folklore A part of the Christmas tradition that seems to have been carefully and cynically shed over the last few decades. In folklore, Black Peter acted as the Repo Man of Christmas giving. He followed along after Jolly Old Saint Nick (something of a lush) and filled the stockings of bad girls and boys with coal. Like most folklore dealing with virtues and vices, Black Peter eschewed grading on a curve, though he did split his goodies up into three categories. Kids who had been merely naughty on an occasional basis, got brown coal or lignite. Kids who have committed some real blunders but fell short of mortal sin infraction, got bituminous coal. Kids who had proceeded with élan and verve regarding various moral codes were rewarded with anthracite and a card for the law firm of McCloskey and Finch, the same law firm who had done such a wonderful job defending Marley (see a Christmas Carol by Dickens).

bland adj Any food that’s nutritionally non-violent.

blasphemy n Good, cheap entertainment.

bleeding-heart adj A political pejorative indicating someone who, due to an odd quirk in their clotting ability, can bleed for others without danger to themselves. Generally, the greater the physical distance between the bleeder and the bleedee, the greater (and more vocal) the blood flow.

blunt adj 1: Truthful. 2: Unpleasant. 3: Unpleasant and truthful. 4: Unpleasant, truthful  and contrary to any privately held misconception. See alarmist.

body language n A remarkable theory that holds that the manner in which an individual holds their body or moves, constitutes a language. Preliminary studies have shown that while some concepts can be easily expressed (e.g. mild distaste indicated by a blow to the face), many others are much more difficult to convey (e.g. “Look out, there’s an enormous, hairy tarantula sneaking up on you”). More research is planned.

bold adj In most circles, damn foolish and possibly reckless. In political circles, nitwitted and possibly brain-damaged. See descriptions of US foreign policy by the House Majority leader.

bonding n 1: The act or process of fixating upon someone or something. Newly hatched ducks, infants, and former heavyweight boxers all bond very well. 2: BBPP The act or process of forcing one’s presence upon an infant until that infant gives up all attempts to escape. See Elian Gonzales.

booklet n A small or underage book. See Adult book.

boom box n An electronic noise maker. One of the three compelling arguments that deafness can be a blessing. See Panama.

boondocks n A well loved, simple but revered place in American folklore. The boondocks do not have a lot of what one would call sophistication, culture, stimulating museums or stunning architecture. Hot and cold running water is not standard and the inhabitants are forced to make do with a variety of things like vittles, sherrifs, and, until the advent of Disk TV and microwave towers, reruns of Hee-Haw, Petticoat Junction and Mayberry RFD . Make no mistake about it: these places still exist in the American heartland; they often have place names that roll off the tongue like Boring,  Oregon or Humptulips[2], Washington. Tragically, with the advent of modern superhighways and GPS units, people pass through the boondocks without knowing it. To alleviate this lamentable situation, a list of You Know You're in the Boondocks When indicators is offered below:

1: The sign that says I'd Turn Back If I Were You is shortly followed by a sign that says Too Late.

2: When the livestock has odd numbered horns, limbs, or eyes.

3: When the chickens sing in three part harmony something suspiciously like Nobody Knows, the Trouble I've Seen.[3]

4: When bloodsucking is a preferred form of entertainment.[4][5]

5: When draft ale comes in two varieties: Stout and Porker.

6: When moss presents calling cards.

7: When the livestock wears mukluks.

8: When deer warning signs have scope targets on them.

boredom n 1: The first refuge of the unimaginative. 2: The last refuge of the damned.

boring adj Something that requires thought yet lacks enough monetary reward to hold one’s attention.

born again adj A person who has been the product of at least two, possibly more, deliveries. Since the advent of Domino’s Pizza, the ranks of the born again have swollen mightily.

Brando, Marlon pers Academy Award winner several times over, his chief features being a voice that only be described as nasally retentive and a facial expression that slithers the gamut between puerile self-absorption to porcine self-satisfaction.

brass n Metal alloy, comprised of the two metals copper and zinc. Used chiefly these days by the entertainment industry either to make musical instruments or enlarge reputations. Much less physically invasive than either silicon implants or collagen.

bribe v The fastest, cleanest method of shaking memories free. Ask anyone who’s worked with either bartenders or politicians. However, only paranoid schizophrenics and people of Swedish extraction can bribe themselves.

bronze n Metal alloy comprised of copper and tin. One of the first alloys discovered by humanity, an age of human history was named the Bronze Age, possibly because the alloy was so useful in either warfare or Olympic sports, depending upon who you ask.

Browning’s 1st Law of Chronodramatics obs The only plays that start on time are the ones you’re late for.

Browning’s 2nd Law of Chronodramatics obs The only plays that start late are ones you’re early for.

Browning’s 3rd Law of Chronodramatics obs The only plays that get canceled are the ones you’re on time for.

Browning’s Addition to Bankhead’s Law maxim Never practice two vices at once. Perfect one and then move on.

Browning’s Adjustment to O’Brien’s Law obs The urgency of that response is proportional to the depth of duplicity involved.

Browning’s Addition to Dodson’s Observation maxim If Science is I and Art is We, Government is You and Line Dancing is Them.

Browning’s Amendment maxim Ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall piss you off (I’d apologize to Huxley, but he’s dead).

Browning’s Blanket maxim The only people who aren’t hypocrites are feral children and the dead.

Browning’s Closet obs Nobody’s closet comes equipped with skeletons. You choose your own skeletons, and which.

Browning’s Law of Conceptual Longevity obs The half-life of an idea varies directly with its nit-wittedness.

Browning’s Law of Redundant Pairs maxim Redundant pairs become the opposite. (e.g. A safe haven, isn’t).

Browning’s Razor maxim Rarely attribute to malice what can be as easily explained by stupidity. See Occam’s Razor.

Browning’s Theology maxim Never second guess God. He doesn’t play fair, he doesn’t tell you all the rules, and he’s a hell of a sore loser.

budget n A meticulous list of financial outlays one must exceed.

Buettner’s Law maxim A man without a remote is nothing.

bulimic adj Anyone who prefers to rent their food, rather than own it outright. See anorexic, fat, obese.

bungee jumping sport Proof that P. T. Barnum couldn’t figure worth beans.

bunny hugger n Anyone who believes that a hillside looks better with trees than without.

buy-in n Modern spin speak for any response so jumbled as to be capable of being interpreted as acceptance.


[1] BBPP - baby boomer pop psychology.


[2]  Humptulip, Washington



[3] Fix-Er-Up-Er



[4] dew drop inn, forks, washington

I'm going down to the Dew-Drop Inn
See if I can drink enough
There ain't much to country living,
Sweat, piss, jizz and blood.
    Warren Zevon, Play It All Night Long  [return]


[5] dazzled by twilight chain store
Dazzled by Twilight Chain store in Forks, Washington.
The "location" of the Twilight series of putrid romances. [return]