The Rejection Collection

melancholic patriotism at Munich’s Amerikahaus

Went to a show of support for Munich’s Amerikahaus, which was a last minute attempt to save this organisation that’s been at this location for more than fifty-five years. Perhaps it’ll continue in some form, but the American-Bavarian cultural centre will never be the same. It’s a sad moment in the history of the city.

But one of the nicest aspects of this place’s existence (did I mention it probably won’t exist much longer? I did, didn’t I?) is that you’re never quite sure what you’ll find there. Today was a perfect example of this. As I was leaving the event, I saw some posters for an exhibit.

Turns out the show was upstairs and I was there during opening hours. I had time before the football was to start. Why not take a look? Am so glad I did, and I think you will be similarly pleased.

What was it called? ‘The Rejection Collection: The Best Cartoons the New Yorker Never Published‘. I am here to tell you, this was much better than you might expect. They were not kept from publication due to lack of hilarity. There was some pronounced hilarity. Some of it was dark and a tad depraved. Am I going to shield you from that part? No. No, I am not.


I don’t know how to tell you this, but I’ve found someone new


Those perverts from National Geographic are filming us again


A whorehouse? Tomorrow? I wanted for us to go to the Guggenheim


I came as soon as I heard


Zen litter box


(Wonder why they didn’t see fit to publish this one)


I’m looking for the necktie that says, “I don’t wear underpants.“‘


(I’m crying with laughter at this one. It’s sick and twisted and dark. And I love it.)


Grandpa, what’s going on here? Didn’t they have colour film at Auschwitz?’


Hand over the sandwich, or I’ll shit on your parents


(Some of these cartoonists have some potential aggression when it comes to cats)


Perhaps my biggest influence was Pollock

I’ve known quite a few percussionists. Some of whom played in an orchestra. I assure you several of them can sympathise with the fellow holding a pistol to his head. Enjoy:


lose the words

the cake is very moist

I’m not sure how long this has been going on, but each year some in the German press debate and decide on the Unwort des Jahres. When I asked google how that could be translated, it came up with ‘taboo word‘. I don’t like that at all. Because ‘taboo‘ connotes that the word has rarely been spoken openly, yet these examples of each year’s Unwort are often chosen because they’ve been overused and the judges are sick of them.

Oh, look…here’s a website that’s actually called I’m not sure why they want to get rid of ‘peanuts‘, but luckily I haven’t heard of anyone attempting to erase the word from the English language. I like peanuts. The nuts and the word. If the word weren’t in the language anymore, how would I ask for them? The packages on the shelf in the store would probably have the peanuts inside, but there’d be no name on the package. I don’t like the sound of any of that.

Then I happened upon a New Yorker article titled:

Words came in, marked for death…

It’s essentially the same idea. The magazine introduced what they call a ‘twitter-based game show‘, and in the first one readers were to ‘propose a single English word that should be eliminated from the language.‘ First of all, what’s a ‘twitter-based game show‘? Is that really a thing? Why wasn’t I informed? I follow the New Yorker on twitter. Shouldn’t they have made a bigger deal of this? If we’re eliminating words from the language, shouldn’t more of us be somehow included? It seems only fair.

I’d go through all the words that were volunteered, but you can click on the link. It won’t hurt you.

But one of the words that thankfully doesn’t get any support from the magazine was ‘moist‘. What on earth is wrong with ‘moist‘? I like that word. A cake that isn’t dry is moist. The grass in the early morning can be moist. Wonderful word – moist.

But the New Yorker provides a link to another site called the Visual Thesaurus, and the piece that also shines light on the aversion to this lovely word. Here you can read the results from a similar poll Which Words Do You Love and Which Do You Hate?

What’s the problem with moist? Really?

I don’t get this.

So what’s my Unwort? What would I rather not hear anymore? I wish I’d never have to hear anything about mayonnaise. Just the thought of that stuff makes me nauseous.



You’ve probably noticed that I’ve been moving around quite a lot lately. Here and there. Every Tuesday in Poing, and last week some massive oversharing while I took this show on the road. While in Berlin, I scattered plenty of photos, visited tea shops/tearooms and generally tried to entertain the lot of you with things I would’ve probably been doing anyway.

Regardless of all that, I’d like to make a desperate plea. One that probably sounds rather rich coming from the likes of me. But before I do so, I’d like to introduce you to Patsy.

Some bloggers have the foresight to alter close friends’ monikers before splaying their names all over the place. To protect the innocent and everything. Well, I hate to say it, but it’s too late for all of that when it comes to Patsy. Not that I’ll be divulging her surname. What, do you think I’m completely insane? Might be better if you don’t answer that just yet.

To adequately describe who Patsy is, I could easily go back to one of the darkest times in my life when I lived for a short time in her house. We’d sit on her porch and drink coffee and solve the many problems of the world, because to be perfectly honest that’s what one does while sitting on the porch drinking coffee with Patsy.

I could just as easily go back many years before that when I was a wee little boy and my mother and Patsy were friends, and we’d go on adventures. Me and Patsy.

Where would we go? Well, exciting, faraway locales like the neighbourhood super market. I’m not kidding. She was so full of verve, that my dear Patsy could make a trip of such drudgery into an adventure. Years later, I’d accompany her to the same neighbourhood super market. It was my habit to grab that week’s New Yorker magazine, and proceed to read it aloud to her as we made our way from the fresh produce, through the frozen foods and on to the salsa and Mexican Food aisle.

It was not only a pleasure to read to her, but it was my small way of saying thank you to her for all that above-average adventuring that we’d had when I’d been little. She knew about my thank you.

She knew, because I told her.

So, I can hear you asking, ‘What about this desperate plea? We want to hear more about the desperate plea.’

It’s quite simple, as many of the best things are. And it’s something I learned from Patsy while sitting on her porch drinking coffee and solving the world’s problems. As one is wont to do. So, rather than take even a morsel of credit for this one, I’ll let Patsy tell it in her own words:

‘See Ken,’ she’d say, ‘You can either go out and see the world. Or if you stay in one place, and wait patiently enough, the world will eventually come to you.’

Let me get ahead of you logical sorts who dissect and disprove simple brilliance at every opportunity. Don’t take this so damned literally. For once, can’t you just enjoy a bit of illogical, improbable wonder?

One needn’t go to Berlin. Or that trip to Peurto Vallarta you were considering? Not necessary. Not at all. The Himalayas can wait…they’re not going anywhere, after all.

Just sit quietly and wait. The world’s going to come stumbling by soon enough. You wouldn’t want to miss that now, would you?

The title of this, incidentally, can be translated as ‘somewhere‘ or ‘anywhere‘ or best of all: ‘nowhere special‘. Kind of perfect, don’t you think?