Punch Lines

Four more years: Plans for President Clinton's inauguration ceremonies in January include gospel music and poetry. Paul Ecker says he can hear David Brinkley now . . .

"Here comes Gore

with the great big bore."

And Clinton's inaugural address . . .

"Thank you for this honor

and, contributors, for your bucks.

But now it's off to McDonald's

for my fries and Arch Deluxe."


In the news: After denying shuttle astronauts the extra day aloft they requested, NASA wound up delaying the landing anyway. Says Jenny Church, "Mission Control explained that they could save a bundle if they stayed in orbit over Saturday night."

Bookstores report that Clinton's "Between Hope and History" isn't selling too well. Says Steve Tatham, "Many shops have it filed 'between half off and history.' "

When GM's new electric car went on sale last week, 40 Southern Californians stepped up to lease them. Says Premiere Morning Sickness, "After every trip, the car needs to spend three hours in the recharging station, so you'll have time to get your windshield really clean."

The Salvation Army is accepting credit cards at some of their kettles, in an attempt to modernize. Says Gary Easley, "Now, if they really want to modernize, their bands should learn a little Pearl Jam and Snoop Doggy Dogg."

Beirut, Lebanon, has banned smoking in public buildings. "Secondhand smoke is very dangerous," said one terrorist, strapping a load of dynamite to his chest. (Premiere)

Scientists say mice who are pampered by their mothers are more resistant to stress. However, says Alan Ray, "There is a negative effect: No other mice want to be around them."

Among the top-selling toys is the Tickle Me Elmo doll. Says the Cutler Daily Scoop, "Meanwhile, Feed Me Elvis is a huge seller at Graceland."

* Adds Ray: "Popular around the world this Christmas is the President Clinton doll. In fact, it sold out in Indonesia."

Bill Gates' book "The Road Ahead" is now updated and out in paperback. Says Cutler, "It has a new subtitle, 'As a Matter of Fact, I Do Own the Road Ahead.' "

Disney's Dalmatians continue to sniff out giant grosses. Says Bob Mills, "That's the big difference between the movies and television. On film, '101 dogs' means big profits. On TV, it just describes the new fall lineup."


Reader Jane Cox of Long Beach recalls that when President Nixon passed away a few years back, she heard the news on the car radio. When she got home, she called to her husband, "Did you hear that Nixon died?" He replied, "Yes, that's sad." But 5-year-old Alex piped up:

"Does that mean Santa has to get a new reindeer?"

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