Adventures of the Author

Annual Festival of Jarhead Inebriation

Tomorrow is November 10th also known as the Annual Festival of Jarhead Inebriation.

As such, thousand of Marines will lift a glass or twelve to celebrate the 229th birthday of the United States Marine Corps. Barking noises and random vowel sounds will probably also be uttered, in a time-honored expression of otherwise inexpressible maritime delight.


Those that feel that public and prolonged drunkenness may not be the most appropriate way to celebrate such an advanced age are not necessarily naïve. They are simply unaware of the finer points of Marine Corps history.

The illustrious United States Marine Corps, like many other fine militant organizations, was formed in a bar. Early job qualification included surliness of demeanor, advanced degree of pistitude, and propensity for standing in harm’s way. Being musket-proof was also considered a great advantage, but not one widely tested outside of battle.

The duties of the early jarheads included guarding the ship’s captain, enforcing the orders of the ships’ captain, striking terror into people not currently the ship’s captain and keeping their boots shiny.

You won’t find it in many history books, but if there is one thing that I learned from my many military adventures, it is that nothing strikes terror into the heart of an enemy like a mean pair of shiny boots.

At this point, some of the more thorough-thinking readers will not doubt be asking, “Why wear such a nicely camouflaged uniform as modern Marines do, if you’re just going to polish your footwear to the point that it could serve as speed-laced solar reflectors?”

Allow me to assure you, from personal experience, that questions of this nature are basically unappreciated by Marine Corps hierarchy. In fact, questions exceeding “How high?” in word count and level of abstraction are generally frowned upon.


“Why?!!! Did I hear the word why emerge from your lips?!!!”

What is not frowned upon is promptness and punctuality. One tenet of Marine Corps doctrine is that, “Being on time is being late. You should be at least 15 minutes early to everything.”

This is exactly the sort of thinking that led to the U.S. Marine Corps to be founded a solid year before the county itself. Which basically confused everyone:

Early Civilian: What are you doing?
Early Jarhead: Defending the country.
Early Civilian: But it’s only 1775, we’re still British colonies.
Early Jarhead: It’s called being proactive!
Early Civilian: Oh. (slowly backing away, being careful not to make any sudden or threatening movements.)

This very same proactivity is alive and sounding-off in today’s 21st century Marine Corps, and is no doubt being used somewhere at this very moment to justify an early commencement of Birthday festivities.

So as leathernecks far and wide promptly embark upon this fine celebratory debauch, I have only one piece of advice for you:

Keep both hands on your refreshing beverage, especially once the dancing starts. You wouldn’t want to spill it on your boots.

This post can be found happily marching across

Adventures of the Author

Intelligent Humor for the Enlightened Masses

I have been reading up on Search Engine Optimization lately and my research has inspired me to try and clarify the focus and purpose of the Ominous Comma, in the hope of reaching a greater percentage of my internet neighbors with the glad tidings of my existence.

Regular readers will have already grasped the humorous intent of these pages, but since my presentation is often very highbrow and almost always very, very, very dry, causal observers, may they be human or search engine, may not immediately grasp the point of all this Very Exciting Nonsense.

Some people would say that the problem lay in my Search Optimization skills. Those people would be wrong. The real problem is this: Google is an idiot.

Regular readers may also recall a similar effort a few months ago, namely my spectacular sellout, in which I boldly inserted the world ’humor’ into my subtitle in a valiant attempt to garner more attention for this site. Search engines however, seem to have no respect for effort, and the exhaustive restructuring of nearly a dozen letter in my top- part- header- thingy has so far brought me very little in the way of visitors. Some people would say that the problem lay in my Search Optimization skills. Those people would be wrong. The real problem is this: Google is an idiot.

Google fails at intelligent humor search

I know that those who lovingly pour over these pages are not used to such harsh language, and if I suspected that Google Search had been dropped on its head as an infant algorithm, I would be much more delicate with my words. But what else can I say about any so-called program, the result of hundreds of thousand of hours of loving devotion and nurture, that cannot grasp the exuberant joy and articulate humor of this publication?

So with apologies in advance to all my subscribers and other loyal constituents of this blog, I am going to attempt to explain what the Ominous Comma is all about, using small keywords so any non-corporeal visitors can follow along.

The Ominous Comma is about humor, intelligent humor,1 humor that launches itself from the shining phosphors of your monitor and grabs you by the cerebellum, wringing the laughter from the irony centers of the brain like an over-filled sponge.

Humor that takes no prisoners, that is unafraid to fill articles, take occasional plunges into satire, and even lightly caresses the cheek of politics.

Humor that is proud of the term humor and is not considering a name change to Funny, Witty, or Mildly Jovial.

Humor that doesn’t have time for celebrities or reality TV because it is still in college even though its synapses have advanced far beyond what are normally considered the Learning Years.

Humor whose wife frequents these pages and therefore cannot resort to boobies and bikinis to bring in traffic but must actually write essays and articles to attract the masses.

That kind of humor.

To further clarify and annoy, I will give a brief list of my influences to help you determine whether or not you have found the right Internet Humor Provider for you.

Douglas Adams
Steven Wright
Anyone able to use the word “scrumbly” in a sentence.
The Far Side
Danger Mouse
Anyone receiving a mandatory sentence for using the word “scrumbly.”
Monty Python
Oscar Wilde
Invader Zim
The Scumbly Scrumblers of Scrumblitude.
Danger Couch
The Peter Principle by Laurence Peter and Raymond Hull.
Dave Berry

I think that about covers it. Remember, if you are looking for political diatribe you are at the wrong site. Similarly if you thirst for gossip or computer tech stuff, you are not going to find much of that here. All you are going to find here is the funniest stuff that anyone has ever written.

Just as long as you define anyone as me.

  1. If you are not intelligent, I am sorry but I am going to have to ask you to stop reading right now. If you are illiterate, I need you to stop staring at the screen pretending to read. Go loiter somewhere else.

    Sorry, rules are rules.

Adventures of the Author Best of the Comma

Interview with the Author

Final exams are over and I have successfully passed my classes. (Yeaaa!) I am trying to get back into the swing of professional humor production, so be looking for a good article on Monday.

In the meantime, I have set up a little question and answer session with my tired and somewhat surly self to discuss this whole period of agony I have just completed. If that seems a little schizophrenic to you, then you are clearly not acquainted with the usual proceedings of this site.

The Interview:

Fictional Interviewer: For the sake of any readers just tuning in, I am talking with Brent Diggs, the author of this blog. Mr. Diggs, do you mind if I ask you a few questions.

ME: Go right ahead.

FI: First of all, you are in college.

ME: Is that a question or a statement?

FI: A question.

ME: I mean, if you want to tell the story for me, that’s fine. I’ll just be over here taking a little nap.

FI: No, it’s definitely a question. One for you to answer.

ME: So should I answer it?

FI: Please!

ME: Yes, I am in college.

FI: And your wife is also in college?

ME: Yes again.

FI: So you’re both in college?

ME: Your firm grasp of the obvious is spellbinding.

FI: And you both work full time?

ME: That‘s correct.

FI: And the two of you are raising three kids?

ME: Is this what investigative reporting looks like? I thought it would be taller.

FI: Answer the question, please.

ME: Yes, three kids I have. (Extra points for using Yoda-speak.)

FI: And you publish two different blogs?

ME: Yes.

FI: Why?

ME: What?

FI: Why would you do that to yourself? Work. School. Writing. Are you masochistic or just plain stupid?

ME: Have you ever been shot during an interview? Because if this is an example of your finest work, you might consider wearing Kevlar underwear.

FI: I wouldn’t have to ask all these questions if you would tell us more about your life and family in your blogs.

ME: I just never set out to write a “blog,” I really just wanted a place to publish my stories and articles and give me a reason to write more of them. I figure the whole Write About my Daily Life thing is pretty much covered.

FI: But you have no problem talking about your life to an imaginary character?

ME: You would do well to keep in mind that imaginary characters can come to very unpleasant, imaginary ends. It happens all the time. Just read Stephen King.

FI: Right! So, what did you miss most during this “season of fire” that you just emerged from?

ME: My wife.

FI: What did you miss second most?

ME: Sleep.

FI: Do you have any plans, now that you are out of class?

ME: I thought I would sleep with my wife. I seem to recall that I enjoyed that.

FI: So is there anything else we should know about? Any other creative projects that you’ve been working on? Anything involving tic-tac poisoning perhaps?

ME: Yes, we are finishing up the Danger Couch DVD, and yes, during some last minute filming over the weekend, I did ingest enough tic-tacs to freshen the breaths of an entire garlic-chugging football team for the next 3 years, along with their cheerleaders, mascot and the complete coaching staff.

FI: And how did that make you feel?

ME: Nauseous.

FI: Anything else we should know?

ME: The DVD is almost done. It is tantalizingly close. It has taken much longer than expected, but it will also be much better than expected. Children will laugh, romantics will cry and the jaded will giggle. It just might bring about world peace.

FI: Do you really think a DVD could usher in world peace?

ME: Not really, but if it does we will definitely charge more for it.

FI: Thank you for the interview, Brent. For the Imaginary News Network this is…Hey, you never gave me a name.

ME: I know. Good-bye.

Have a great weekend everyone. See you Monday.