From the tube: Among the Top 10 excuses from the San Diego Chargers for why they lost Super Bowl XXIX, according to David Letterman:

* Thought we were going to be playing against them Budweiser bottles.

* If only we’d had Shapiro and Cochran on defense.

* Ate free bags of Doritos until we were sick to our stomachs.


* You ever seen a Super Bowl ring up close? Piece of crap!

* Hard to concentrate when you are having erotic fantasies about Kathie Lee.

* Pregame pep-talk by Marv Levy.

* We’ve already been to Disneyland.


Jay Leno, on Darryl Strawberry pleading guilty to tax evasion in exchange for a three-month prison term: “That means the next time he’s traded, it could be for a carton of cigarettes.”


In the news: Comic Argus Hamilton, on The Newt: “Insurance lobbyists paid $1,000 apiece to have breakfast with him, then TV investors paid $50,000 each for dinner with him. The Chinese are right: It certainly is the Year of the Pig.”

Hamilton, on President Clinton’s Monday meeting with the nation’s governors about welfare reform: “Everyone got a little edgy when the discussion turned to lazy workers on the public dole. Nobody wanted term limits.”

Comic Jenny Church, on the bankruptcy law firms going to Orange County to pitch services in a so-called “beauty contest”: “For the swimsuit competition, lawyers posed beside the county’s collapsed investment pool. Attorneys were judged on poise, personality, teeth and dorsal fins.”

Church, on Pepsi’s Super Bowl ad in which the kid sips on the straw until he’s pulled inside the bottle: “If he sucks long enough, he can play for the Rams.”

Reader Roger Bennett, on police searching for an assault suspect whose victims claimed had a distinctively bad body odor: “A police artist is reportedly working on a scratch-and-sniff composite drawing.”



Cirque du O.J.: “George Seifert of the 49ers was named NFL Coach of the Year. And Johnnie Cochran was tapped as Defense Witness Coach of the Year.” (Bob Mills)

* “If Cochran keeps coming up with red herrings, he can be cited for fishing without a license. (Stan Kaplan)

* “Doctors for William Hodgman reported his chest pains were a result of inhaling too much of the defense’s smoke screen.” (Brad Halpern)

* “Hodgman became faint when one of the defense’s undisclosed documents was Robert Shapiro’s ’94 tax return.” (Halpern)

* “Judge Lance Ito gave prosecutors an extra 10 minutes to add to their opening statement. He also granted President Clinton 20 more minutes for some corrections and additions to the State of the Union address.” (Tony Peyser)


Pasadena reader Virginia Ebright was explaining her spouse’s gruffness to a young neighbor boy who had misbehaved. She assured him that her husband’s “bark was worse than his bite.” The lad gave her a puzzled look, then said:

“How do you know? Has he ever bit you?”