THE FLUTTER! #17 

The Society #MakingPeopleBetter Newsletter

Welcome, Brothers and Sisters of the SFMPB. We have a NEW RULE to share!

But first... notice how we addressed you as Brothers and Sisters? Yes, it was absolutely intentional. It was one of the last decisions made by Rajah Bill before he quit calling himself Rajah Bill. Oh my, he struggled so gallantly to find another, more appropriate, title for himself, it was hard to watch sometimes. He would lock himself in his office—or as his wife calls it, "our bathroom"—for hours it seemed, then come out and ask, oh-so plaintively, "Hon, what do you think of Viceroy Bill?" And Mrs. Rajah Bill would look at him in that funny, sweet, I-wonder-if-it's-too-late-to-have-this-annulled look, and say, "No Dear. That makes you sound like an idiot."

The same thing, over and over. "Commodore Bill?" "Regent Bill?" "Cardinal Bill?" "His Excellence Bill?" "Founding Father Bill?" And each time, Mrs. Rajah Bill would shake her head and say, "No Dear. That makes you sound like an idiot." (Except for that once, when she said, "Then I would be Mrs. Founding Father Bill, which makes me sound like an idiot.")

Finally, it came to him. "Brother Bill." PERFECT! It has all the egalitarian sobriety and subdued respect anyone could ask for. And, as Brother Bill soon realized, if he addresses all SFMPBers the same way, as "Brothers," the Society has taken a giant leap forward in it's goal to MAKE PEOPLE BETTER!

(Incidentally, it was Mrs. Brother Bill who suggested that female SFMPBers should be addressed as "Sisters.")

Now, onto that NEW RULE!

•••

But first... notice how our new THE FLUTTER! subtitle has one of those newfangled "hashtag" jobbies in it? Brother Bill has decided that, since he doesn't do Tweets, or Insta-Gripe, Facing Books, Selfies or any of those things, perhaps he had better do something "hep" if he wants to keep the younger SFMPB members satisfied. In doing so, though, he has run nose first into a dilemma.

You see, at the same time he was revamping the subtitle (The Society #MakingPeopleBetter Newsletter), he was also revamping the main title with the intention of shortening the issue number even further. He decided to use the universal symbol for "number," which is "#." And as he was surveying the changes he had made to the new THE FLUTTER! design, he couldn't help but notice that "#" (for "hashtag") and "#" (for "number") looked an awfully lot alike.

The very next day, Brother Bill was on the telephone, speaking with one of those nice computerized ladies, when she said, "If you wish to speak to one of our associates, please hit pound." Finding no such word on his telephone buttons, he hit them all until something worked. It was only after he'd hung up that he noticed the button that worked, the so-called "pound" button, had a "#" on it.

My goodness, you can't imagine how confused Brother Bill felt. He started to examine his past experience for any clues that might explain how "#" could mean so many things. To further complicate matters, he remembered from his music-playing days that in musical scores, whenever the composer intends for a note to be played a half-step higher, he puts a "#" in front of it. Indeed, there can be as many as seven "#"s clustered together on a musical staff like guppies in a pond. WHAT IS HAPPENING HERE!?

And what does it all have to do with that insidious "children's" game, Tic-Tac-Toe?

Unwittingly, Brother Bill may have stumbled onto something big. And let us pray it doesn't have anything to do with Satanism, the Rosicrucians, the Shriners or the NSA.

Now, onto that NEW RULE!

•••

It has been months since we've added a new rule to our Official Society For Making People Better Rule Book, and Brother Bill apologizes for that. He knows as well as anyone that a list of rules must follow the same dictum that controls cellular reproduction, political parties and mushrooms: GROW, OR DIE!

Yet for some time, your Brother Bill has felt like he was making up rules rather willy-nilly. In fact, he is rather embarrassed by more than one of the rules he has added to the Rule Book.

However, at long last, not only has Brother Bill thought of a new rule, but it's a "good 'un," as they might say in those sections of the country where people seem to have lost the use of their lips as an element in proper pronunciation. This rule has a broad application for people around the globe, and we are convinced if it were applied thoughtfully, it would not only make a great many people better people, but it would make this a better world to live in.

Without further ado, here is our dear Society #MakingPeopleBetter's NEW RULE: Rule 18: If you chose to reject sound, scientific evidence in some fields, you cannot take advantage of sound, scientific results from other fields.

Tragically, your Brother Bill has used up all the room in which he intended to explain his new rule and why he thought of it. Perhaps in a future THE FLUTTER!, we can finish what we started. Until then... TOODLE-OO!

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