13 Things Reader's Digest Won't Tell You
Tyrades!By Danny Tyree
If not for my son Gideon (age 11), I might have missed my deadline this week.
Over the past few months, Gideon has become an avid reader of the venerable "Reader's Digest," following in the footsteps of me and my late father (and probably my grandmother Tyree).
I had scoured the internet news sites in vain for a late-breaking topic that appealed to me, but that issue lying on the back seat of the Nissan Rogue triggered a brainstorm.
A few years ago, RD began carrying a feature called "Things Your (Fill-in-the-blank) Won't Tell You," spilling the insider beans on the lives of doctors, grocers, bankers and others who deeply affect our lives.
Well, turnabout is fair play, as someone probably said in one of those RD "Quotable Quotes" features. I've tracked down an anonymous RD staffer who wishes to reveal "13 Things Reader's Digest Won't Tell You":
1. The items in our "That's Outrageous!" feature don't sound so outrageous after we go back on our meds.
2. "Laughter Is The Best Medicine"? Yeah, sure, that's why so many states are rushing to open medical laughter dispensaries.
3. Santa Claus reads "Reader's Digest," so all the smart-aleck kids who get quoted in our magazine should be aware that there will come a reckoning.
4. When we think that the HECTIC, STRESS-FILLED LIFESTYLE of 1922 necessitated the creation of "Reader's Digest" and its abbreviated articles, we inevitably laugh so hard we wet our pants.
5. Union rules won't let our "Everyday Heroes" be on duty every day.
6. We seriously considered whacking JFK ourselves when he turned down helping with our "Ich bin ein subscriber" marketing campaign. (We did manage to squash FDR's "Fifth Freedom." You know, "Freedom From &^%$# Magazine Insert Cards Littering Your Floor.")
7. We have now sneaked a microchip into each issue, so when "It Pays To Enrich Your Word Power" pays you, the IRS will come around for its share.
8. The U.S. edition emphasizes uplifting celebrations of traditional American values; but some of our foreign editions lean more toward "Death To Those United States," "Great Satan In Uniform" and "Do you have an amusing beheading anecdote?"
9. Our Braille edition and Large Print Edition have not been nearly the money pits that our "free service dog with each purchase" gimmick turned out to be.
10. Yes, we've killed a lot of trees over the years; but the timber mills assure us they've been planting new trees, where the deer and rabbits and unicorns can play. Say what? Oh, sugar!
11. We take pride in keeping up with the times and staying hep. Page us on our beeper and we'll send our society editor out to cover your civil union.
12. Our toughest condensing job involved whether to drop "Jesus" or "wept." We're still trying to clean up from that plague of frogs.
13. Our editorial board is still debating whether to update "All In A Day's Work" to "All In A Day's Faking Disability" and "You Be The Judge" to "You Be The Activist Judge."
I'm glad I could give a tip of the hat to "Reader's Digest." It certainly inspires me to write "an article a week of enduring value — for housebreaking puppies."
*Hmph!* Perhaps whoever edited that last paragraph would like "Personal Glimpses" of my size 14 boot headed his way...
© 2015 Danny Tyree. Danny welcomes email responses at firstname.lastname@example.org and visits to his Facebook fan page "Tyree's Tyrades". Danny's' weekly column is distributed exclusively by Cagle Cartoons Inc. newspaper syndicate.
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