Who says U.S. District Judge John McBryde, often described as churlish, doesn't have a sense of humor?
Buzz figures the Fort Worth judge must have some notion of the comic, otherwise he would have hurled his gavel at the lawyers representing two petitioners in his court recently--Barney the Obnoxious Purple Dinosaur and the Equally Obnoxious Chicken.
That's right. The trained minds of the Honorable McBryde and Lord knows how many lawyers were recently enlisted to answer this question on behalf of the republic: Can a man in a chicken suit lawfully smack the crap out of a man in a dinosaur suit? The answer is yes, according to McBryde, which we're sure warms the hearts of Barney haters everywhere.
Barney's metroplex-based creators, Lyons Partnership, sued chicken man Ted Giannoulas, irritator of sports fans everywhere, over a skit by Giannoulas in which the Chicken gets in a slapstick dance and rap competition with an ersatz Barney. Lyons Partnership alleged copyright and trademark infringement. McBryde dismissed the case late last month, ruling essentially that it's OK to whack Barney as part of a parody.
Edgar Bergen, meet Richard Evans
From slapstick animal acts, we continue our vaudevillian theme with a ventriloquist act: County Commissioner John Wiley Price and his own version of Mortimer Snerd, Richard "Doc" Evans.
Doc Evans, a Roosevelt High dropout who has a habit of stretching the truth about his academic credentials, took 48 percent of the vote in his race for Dallas school board.
Doc left the talking to Price on election night. That's just as well. Since news of Evans' shortcomings has spread, it's become clear who is really running for the District 5 school board seat.
Buzz watched closely as Evans finally admitted to being a dropout Tuesday. Price was standing behind him, and his lips didn't move once. Amazing.
Should he win the runoff against Se-Gwen Tyler on August 29, we'll look forward to what Price--uh, Evans--has to say to DISD's at-risk students.
A little repartee
The self-serious make such great targets for ridicule, none so ripe as our friends at People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals.
PETA recently appeared in these pages urging a ban on fishing at public lakes. Now they've found another target, the Oscar Mayer Wienermobile, that giant rolling phallus that travels the country promoting mystery meat.
A news release announcing plans to protest the motorized dog's effect on children in 70 cities this summer, says that "the Wienermobile is the meat industry's 'Joe Camel.'" This of course raises the question, What do you get when you smoke a hot dog?
A kielbasa. (Rimshot.)
The protest's theme is "Pigs are friends--not food." We don't know about friends, but they've been more than a few blind dates. (Rimshot.)
Thanks, folks. You've been a lovely audience.
--Compiled from staff reports by Patrick Williams
Don't like the jokes? Send better ones to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Get the This Week's Top Stories Newsletter
Every week we collect the latest news, music and arts stories — along with film and food reviews and the best things to do this week — so that you’ll never miss Observer's biggest stories.