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The Stray Lake Signal-Gazette
"We print all the news that's fit for Stray Lake to know."
Horace Gumblat, editor emeritus
Beautiful Stray Lake

Alternating Mayor Blue the dead-dog
launches third party presidential bid

Campaign manager: deceased's status
will not hamper chances

Wilma Whipstittle
Staff Writer/Photographer
Defying conventional wisdom and all the polls, Blue the Dog threw his hat into the Presidential race last week. Actually, Lucrecia Borgia, Blue's campaign manager, made the announcement that one of Stray Lake's four alternating mayors would launch a third party candidacy, Blue not accustomed to wearing a chapeau and being dead besides.

"We think the American people are looking for something outside the box in this election," Lucrecia mentioned during a sparsely-attended press conference at the Tipple Time. "And a dead dog is surely something outside the box."

"Actually, he is in the box," chef Juan de Fuca pointed out. "He begins to get kind of gamey if he starts to thaw."

"That could be a handicap when it comes to pressing flesh on the old campaign trail," noted Corp Rampmeter, Publisher Emeritus of the Signal-Gazette.

"Not to worry, we're going to have him mounted by a taxidermist," assured Lucrecia.

"Be kind of hard to debate that way," offered Lou the bartender.

"Au contraire," said Lucrecia. "We'll have his jaw wired up to move by remote control and I'm taking ventriloquism lessons to speak for him. I am also boning up on national and international issues of great importance so Blue can speak with authority."

"You mean things like health care, the national debt, nuclear proliferation, terrorism ..."

"Really?" said Lucrecia. "I was thinking along the lines of finding the truth about the aliens at Roswell."

"We can?" said the Rev. Haskell as he held his glass up for a refill.

"I'm not making any promises for Blue," said Lucrecia. "I'm just saying things for him."

"Well I can see how much attention you've been paying to the race," said Lou.

"And before," said Lucrecia. "Ralph (Gumstock, Blue's owner) and I have been considering this since before Blue's unfortunate accident. You remember, when he was run over while giving himself a rectal exam in the middle of the street?"

"A tragic day for Stray Lake," agreed Lou. "But why did you not start earlier and seek one of the established party's nominations?"

"Time just got away from us," said Lucrecia. "That and we were pretty hung over after our vacation in the Napa Valley."

"Understandable," said Lou. "And you don't think Blue's being deceased will hurt his chances?"

"Au contraire again," said Lucrecia. "Most Presidents only rise in the esteem of historians and the public after they shuffle off this mortal coil. Blue's already shuffled, so he's got a head up on everyone else in the race going in."

"I guess I can't dispute that," Lou agreed. "But do you have a platform of some sort?"

"I have a little folding step stool I use to reach the back of the liquor cabinet," said Lucrecia.

"I believe he was referring to some snappy catch phrases that will grab the enthusiasm of the populace without actually making any real promises," observed Corp.

"Well ... how about, 'We're going to make America great for dogs'?" explained Lucrecia. "Or should it be 'dead dogs?' Oh yeah, that reminds me, I have to hand in Blue's resignation as alternating mayor, to free him up full time for the race."

"I guess that means a special election to fill his ... whatever," said Dorothea Deluney as she passed with a tray of drinks.

"Give me a triple, Lou," said Stray County Election Board Chairperson Dwight Flukehandle.

"Can't we operate with just three mayors?" suggested Alternating Mayor Leroy Wertzbrimmer.

"A troika?" said Dorothea.

"I'll bring the olive oil," offered chef Juan.

"Special election," said Dorothea. "Definitely a special election."

the tap daning pig

The tap dancing pig

"The tap dancing pig"

The Tap Dancing Pig
Yes, the pig dances in these laugh-out-loud stories, but he really wants to direct. There is also a cattle drive to make John Wayne cringe, a giant shrimp with an endless thirst, and a lighthouse keeper who has so many personalities he can't keep track of which one he's having a conversation with. Gleaned from over 20 years of humor columns, these 35 stories (and a couple of bonuses at the end) will keep you in good spirits. So settle back as the Lincolns and Grants play poker at the White House, Teddy Roosevelt hits himself with a big stick, and anarchists refuse to reset their clocks. Oh yes, there's a detective on the trail of the Fat Man, just so the suspense won't sneak up on you (the laughs will be out in the open). Read these tales one a day or gulp them in a sitting, it's your limit of laughter that sets the agenda. Available at the Amazon Kindle Store for $2.99, free download for

The tap dancing pig

"It's okay, the reindeer are driving"

It's okay, the reindeer are driving
Holiday humor and more: Santa is stuck in the chimney, hitting the rum cookies, or jumping from an airplane. Bobby Lee parties, claim jumpers can't shoot straight, and two rats own a cheese factory. These short reads are guaranteed to give you a belly laugh, for $0.99 (that's ninety-nine cents for the numerically challenged).

It's okay, the reindeer are driving

"At Love's Crest"

At Love's Crest

A steamy romance, with twists and turns of menace and intrigue, set against the backdrop of a threatening flood. Can Allyson trust the man she has fallen in love with so suddenly? Is he part of the danger that threatens her, or the one who can save her from it? The waters rise and Allyson must decide, as her wild desires beat against the walls she has built around her once-shattered heart. This sort of thing will run you a little more, $2.99 to be factual about it; but then it's a lot longer.

At Love's Crest

It's always time at the Tipple Time

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Copyright 1996 - 2015, Robert A. Markwalter

Any resemblance to any person or persons in this material should give same strong impetus to seek medical help and, coincidentally,
is coincidental, unintended, accidental, and all those other disclaimers people make when they shove knives into your back.