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89th Sort

Cartoons, Spies, and Nostradamus

by Dear Jon
October 19, 2001

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89th Sort_Dear Jon-Cartoons, Spies, and Nostradamus ACTUAL LETTER TO DEAR JON:

Dear Jon,

How come you don't make up questions anymore?

An Actual Letter Writer

Dear Actual,

I don't need to. As you can see by this sort today, my readers are sending a flurry of actual letters. Besides, a person can talk to themselves for only so long before they get bored, unless they are psycho, so the fact that I get bored is proof positive that I am perfectly sane.


Dear Jon,

Are you going to issue a special edition on your 100th sort? Sort of like they do with comic books, make it a "collector's issue" or something? That would be cool!

Comic Book Guy

Dear Comic,

In a previous sort which I don't have time to look up and you obviously didn't have time to read, I mentioned that readers should join in celebrating the one year anniversary of the Partial Observer's launch into Cyberspace. One of the activities I suggested was that readers could vote on which letters and responses in "Dear Jon" were the best. The 100th Sort is close enough to make that part of the One Year Anniversary Festivities.

How exactly would a "collector's issue" on an e-zine work?

Speaking of cartoons, some newspapers print cartoon illustrations with their "Dave Barry" articles. For other columnists, like Abigail Van Buren and George Will, they print photographs. I suppose that Dave Barry is to George Will what Dear Jon is to Dear Abby, so I wish the Partial Observer would print cartoon illustrations for each of my columns. I look kind of like Dave Barry anyway, in that I am a white male, but I happen to be a couple decades younger with a hairy face and glasses. Do you suppose the "Webmaster" will rise to this challenge?

[The Webmaster complies: How's this?]


Dear Jon,

When is the best time for an international espionage agent to tell a girl he loves her: before getting out of the ridiculous death device that the sadistic megalomaniac terrorist has put us in, or when we get to the nuclear device that I disable with 2 seconds left on the timer?

Spy Guy

Dear Guy,

Any international espionage agent will tell you that when a man and a woman are forced to partner with each other to disarm nuclear devices or escape death-by-torture devices, they are pretty much guaranteed sex afterward. However, this sex will only be good provided the casual attitude towards death and each other continues, and that they are interrupted by prudish supervisors in helicopters circling overhead. Informing a girl that he loves her pretty much guarantees that she will die. She will not die by the nuke or the torture, but she will die. Love between international espionage agents follows its own rules, not for the general Dear Jon readership. I suggest that you ask "Mother" or your U.N.C.L.E. for advice.


Dear Jon,

Hasn't everything Nostradamus ever wrote already been attributed to every major event since he died? How do people keep coming up with more "predictions" from his work? How much stuff did this guy write anyway?

Tired of Nostradamus

Dear Nostra,

Unfortunately, the Partial Observer's resident expert on all things New Age has taken a "personal retreat" due to the utter failure of psychic prediction and astrology to predict the events of 9-11-01, but let me see if I can reach him on a chat line. (Results published here.)

Dear Jon: Looking for Jon Deer. Are you there?

Jon Deer: What now.

Dear Jon: I have a question about Nostradamus and the East Coast attack.

Jon Deer: Go (several expletive suggestions involving blunt instruments and human anatomy deleted)!

Dear Jon: So I guess Nostradamus is discredited too?

Jon Deer: Then dip yourself in a bathtub full of vinegar.

Dear Jon: I'm not rubbing it in. I really want to know.

Jon Deer: Now you know.

Dear Jon: I guess what you're going through would be kind of like Christians finding out that Jesus fathered Mary Magdalene's love-child.

Jon Deer: Shut up. You know I used to believe that.

Dear Jon: Sorry. I forgot that's part of the whole "Masonic Divine Kings
of Europe" scenario.

Jon Deer: Leave me alone.

In any case, Nostradamus does not have much to say, especially not now. Remember that the much-touted Nostradamus television special 20 years ago was hosted, I believe, by Orson Welles. He is the man who panicked America with his radio adaptation of "War of the Worlds." The fact is, Nostradamus is used by tabloids to sell newspapers. He gets almost as much tabloid press as the Virgin of Fatima and Jesus Christ, who was supposed to return in the Year 2000, if you recall the headlines in 1997, 1998, and 1999.

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