Tyrades! by Danny Tyree
Well, that quarter-century went by faster than the weaver’s shuttle!
(Almost as fast as younger readers Googling, “What the %$#@& is a weaver’s shuttle?”)
As of late October, I have been pounding out a Tyrades! column every week for 25 years without a single break, and with no plans to slow down.
Why does someone keep up the weekly grind after more than 1300 columns? Tradition … TRADITION! (Although, if I was a rich man, I’d give a congressman a .. campaign contribution … in return for slipping an 8-day week into the middle of a 3,000-page omnibus spending bill.)
Other reasons abound. My deeply ingrained work ethic plays a big part in my perseverance. I would show you an album of the hard work performed by my ancestors, but it’s waaay over there on the bookshelf and my gluteus maximus has a binding agreement with this chair.
I’m addicted to the warm, fuzzy feeling of thinking that my observations bring a smile to faces across the nation. That is a smile, isn’t it, and not a nervous tic? (“The editor knows where we live! What if he sends that crazy Tyree son of a gun to the house? I told you we should get the paper from the newsstand!”)
I feel a spiritual responsibility to keep going. I don’t exactly have “talent on loan from God” like the Rush Limbaugh slogan, but I do possess sort of a “talent that God left out on the curb hoping some poor schmuck would haul it off.”
Appearing in print and in digitized archives is my brush with immortality. Although, some people think my brush with immortality should entail being chained to a rock and having an eagle peck at my liver. To each his own.
I am too ornery to go gentle into that good night. Various cultural forces have caused a distressing number of newspapers to go belly-up since I started in 1998 and I want to use my notoriety to inspire the intrepid survivors to keep up the good fight. (“Tyree. T-Y-R-E-E. Yeah, the guy next to the pork-belly futures report.”)
I don’t solve crossword puzzles or memorize sports statistics, so relentlessly brainstorming puns and fine-tuning song parodies are my way of keeping mentally sharp. I THINK I came into the room to write this paragraph. Or was it to stop the spaghetti from boiling over? Decisions, decisions.
My long-suffering wife accommodates my need for time to research, outline, write and proofread. I would hate to lose my excuse for reading three newspapers a day or staying up late. (“Never know when this two-paragraph news item about the prince of Liechtenstein postponing a speech about watching paint dry will come in handy. Could be comedy gold!”)
As I continue to hone my satirical jabs, I aspire to show my mother (age 96) that there are more nuanced ways of getting a point across than some of her unfiltered utterances. Honest, she recently told a casual acquaintance, “I’m glad you got your hair cut. It makes you look HUMAN.” Bless her heart – and gag her mouth.
Seriously, I’m glad my mother has lived to see me collect 75 of my favorite essays into “Tyree’s Tyrades!: 25 Years of Love and Laughter,” available in paperback and ebook from Amazon.
Makes a great stocking stuffer. Fits waaay better than a weaver’s loom.
Copyright 2023 Danny Tyree, distributed by Cagle Cartoons newspaper syndicate.
Danny Tyree welcomes email responses at tyreetyrade[email protected] and visits to his Facebook fan page “Tyree’s Tyrades.”