Edition 5

English Optimist to Retire

Creator of uplifting slogans to step down in 2021

Daniel Parringtonhamshire, the English optimist and creator of many slogans and witty phrases that have become commonplace in everyday life, will be retiring in April. Parringtonhamshire, an English scholar and professor at The University of Oxford, will continue teaching but will terminate his vocation in the creation of all uplifting slogans.

While world leaders and celebrities are often credited with certain quotes or positive sayings, Professor Parringtonhamshire or his ancestors are generally behind the creation of most. Until last year, the seventy-six-year-old lived in the shadows of obscurity but recently emerged as the innovator of many common phrases we often see perpetuated on inspirational social media posts.

Parringtonhamshire is credited with such household sayings as, “Live your best life” along with “Keep looking up; you see more.” But it was “Live, Love, and Laugh” that catapulted him into slogan stardom. Parringtonhamshire is also known for penning such witticisms as “Every dog has his day” and “We are all shining stars.”

The Englishman comes from a long line of optimists who are credited with the introduction of such inspirational quotes as “Up and at ‘em,” “Rise and shine,” and “The early bird catches the worm.” Parringtonhamshire’s lineage consists of numerous scholars, philosophers, and thinkers who have passed down the special talent through many generations.

The Wet Gazette had a chance to speak with the famous slogan master during the last week of March.

“This past year seemed like the opportunity of a lifetime to render some pithy quotes to a desperate public,” the professor stated. “During the spring of 2020, I felt inspired to blow a little sunshine up the collective arses of the world. That’s when I came up with ‘We are all in this together’ and ‘Everything will be okay.’”

The professor paused reflectively for a moment and then resumed.

“But I realized by autumn, quarantined in my single room in Worcestershire, the bleak grayness of life streaming through my grimy window like a milky mist, that I no longer believed my own bullshit. I simply could not go on. The reality that we are all just trudging to a bitter end set upon me like darkness on a winter’s day.

We asked the good professor if he had any future plans beyond teaching classes at the renowned university about fifty miles northwest of London…if he had any new aspirations.

Parringtonhamshire shrugged with resignation before shaking his head, his lank gray hair tickling his brow. Then he responded, “No, I don’t think so. You can’t teach an old dog new tricks.”

Puzzling Compulsion

Tucson man reveals addiction to digital puzzles, shunning friends and family while losing interest in everyday activities

A Tucson, Arizona man, Devon Fauntleroy, admitted to The Wet Gazette on Friday that he had given in to an overwhelming and addictive compulsion to work digital puzzles on his electronic devices over the past year, rendering him helpless and bewildered. A not so new phenomena, the growing number of adults becoming dependent on downloadable games and apps is concerning. Dr. Micha English, a Johns Hopkins psychiatric physician, had this to say.

“We have seen an exponential escalation in people entering the Crossroads Addiction Center here in Baltimore over the past year,” the celebrated shrink offered. “The pandemic certainly played a role, but only about ten percent of people who play these games will actually develop problems. Still, ten percent is no small number. And truthfully, we have numerous documented cases going back as far as 2018. So while the recent lockdowns have contributed, it is far from being the only factor.”

The Wet Gazette learned that, like many addictions, the dependency begins innocently enough. Men and women arrive home from work stressed and rattled, seeking an escape from the daily grind. That’s when they pick up their devices and begin the downhill spiral. We contacted Mr. Fauntleroy several months after leaving the treatment facility, and here is what he had to say.

“A little over a year ago, I downloaded Wordscapes on my phone. I really enjoyed it and thought it was doing me some good. But soon, it was all I wanted to do. I lost my appetite, isolated from friends and family, and began lying about how much time I was spending working puzzles on my device.  I tried to switch things around to break the addiction by downloading various games. First, it was Wordstacks, then Word Connect, followed by Uncrossed. Wow! I’m getting sweaty and shaky just talking about it!”

We pressed Fauntleroy further and were enlightened by how insidious the disease really is.

“I started messing up at the office. Whenever I thought I was alone, I would get my phone out and play, losing hours of productive work time. Then I began hiding in the workplace bathroom, almost oblivious to the dubious environment of a public lavatory as people filtered through, doing their business. I began to hate myself. Soon, I couldn’t work at all and took a leave of absence.”

It wasn’t just Fauntleroy’s work that suffered. His home life was nearly destroyed as well.

“My wife and daughter were understanding at first and wanted me to seek help. They even staged an intervention. I said I would quit but began hiding in the bathroom at home for hours on end, compulsively working puzzles. One morning my wife approached, and I hid my iPhone in the toilet tank…much like an alcoholic hiding a pint of gin. Of course, unlike a drunk’s stash, my phone didn’t survive the water like a bottle of liquor does. I’ve purchased six new devices over the past eight months. That’s when I knew I needed help.”

But that wasn’t the final straw for Devon. It took legal trouble to push him over the edge.

“I was driving home from Verizon, having just purchased a new phone. I couldn’t control myself and began working a puzzle as I drove through the neighborhood. I was only three blocks from the house when I weaved and hit Mrs. Parson’s mailbox. I sped off, but she’s a lonely old bat who has little else to do other than look out her window all day, hoping to find trouble. She got my plate number and called the police. That was the beginning of the end.”

While Devon’s story may seem odd, it’s not unique. The problem appears to be a growing trend among middle-agers. We are happy to report that his recovery is going well.

“It’s been three months since I ‘puzzled,’” he stated, chuckling at the lingo he’d picked up at the meetings he attends daily. “It’s kinda like druggies using the term ‘used.’ Really, it’s not much different.”

We asked how he plans to stay clean and what triggers he must avoid. He shrugged and offered this.

“I need to continue with the daily meetings, for sure. Like most addicts, I’m stunned it ever got this far. It’s hard to figure. In fact, it’s quite puzzling.”

What do you say?

Is laughter really the best medicine?

Ferrin Finklestein
I’ll do anything for a laugh…just ask my four ex-wives.
Kelly Sliquepearl
Goliath, an item I picked up over at the Love Shack, is the best medicine. Goliath never leaves socks on the floor, isn’t amused by flatulence, and presented me with an earth-shattering fourgasm just last night!
Muhammed Lowdkweeph
I honestly haven’t had a good belly laugh since they canceled The Suite Life of Zack & Cody.