Some cynical definitions
ARTIFICIAL INSEMINATION: Procreation without recreation. BOOKCASE: A piece of furniture used in America to house bowling trophies and Elvis collectibles. BULIMIA: Retched excess. CHIC: Considered smart without the deadening implication of intelligence. CLIQUE: A group of insiders who greet outsiders with their backsides; a closed circle of asses. CONSULTANT: A jobless person who shows executives how to work. DENTURES: Two rows of artificial ivories that may be removed periodically to frighten one's grandchildren or provide accompaniment to Spanish music. DNA: A complex organic molecule characterized as the building block of life and appropriately shaped like a spiral staircase to nowhere. ERUDITE: Exhibiting a degree of book learning fatal to success in any business or romantic enterprise. FIBER: Edible wood-pulp said to aid digestion and prolong life, so that we might enjoy another six or eight years in which to consume wood-pulp. FUNERAL HOME: A stately manse occupied by transients who continually receive visitors but lack the energy and inclination to entertain them. GENETIC ENGINEERING: Tampering with chromosomes so that science might develop a new miracle cure or a rabbit that plays the banjo. HIP: Smartly attuned to the latest cutting-edge clichés. JOB: A state of employment everyone wants but few look forward to on a Monday morning. LAWYER: A professional advocate hired to bend the law on behalf of a paying client; for this reason considered the most suitable background for entry into politics. LECHER: A stud with liver spots. LOOTING: A public shopping spree generously sponsored by local merchants in the wake of a riot. LOTTERY: The equivalent of betting that the next pope will be from Duluth, or that the parrot in the pet store window speaks Flemish. MATH ANXIETY: An intense lifelong fear of two trains approaching each other at speeds of 60 and 80 mph. MUGGER: A benevolent citizen of the streets who frequently spares the lives of total strangers in exchange for any cash and valuables in their possession. NEGOTIATING: The art of persuading your opponent to take the nice shiny copper penny and give you the wrinkled old paper money. NEUROTIC: Sane but unhappy about it. OBITUARY: A final summation of our lives that, for most of us, occupies about three inches of space in what will shortly become cage liner for your neighbor's parakeet. POSITIVE THINKING: Self-improvement through self-deception. QUALITY OF LIFE: What an industrialized nation is said to offer when enough of its citizens are suffering from terminal stress. REVOLUTIONARY: An oppressed person waiting for the opportunity to become an oppressor. SHALLOWNESS: The root cause of chronic good health, high school popularity, appearance on the fiction bestseller lists, and gainful employment on local TV news broadcasts. STAR: A performer who makes more than his or her agent. Also SUPERSTAR: A performer who makes more than Guatemala. STATE-OF-THE-ART: Soon-to-be-obsolete. TABOO: Any strict cultural prohibition that, when breached, causes everyone in the group to gasp; e.g., cannibalism, public nudity, serving fried pork rinds at a Hasidic wedding, or answering the question "How are you?" in the negative. UNEMPLOYMENT: The usual alternative to overwork. URINAL: The one place where all men are peers. VIRGIN: A young innocent who in former times was sacrificed to the gods but who now merely lives in disgrace. WAKE: 1. A convivial soiree with a preserved corpse in the room. 2. What the mourners would be visibly startled to see the corpse do, especially those expecting a sizable inheritance. X-CHROMOSOME: A genetic double-cross that empowers women with the ability to bear children and reserves for men the right to be color-blind hemophiliacs. ZOMBIE: A mirthless creature beloved by teenage horror movie fans and those in charge of the hiring at accounting firms.
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