204 thoughts on “Quick question”

  1. Mr. Johnson.
    The story of the Pink Gorilla suit made me laugh, but the story of Mr. Johnson brought tears to my eyes. That is the more difficult emotion to bring out of me.

  2. I pick the first one.

    They’re both good, but I pick the first one.

    Can’t believe I missed it the first time around.

  3. Mr. Johnson gets my vote.

    I was a volunteer at the VA hospital for a bit; being able to go out on your own terms is rare. Usually the last thing you lose is your dignity.

  4. LD –

    Love the pink gorilla story – have rarely laughed so hard, especially 5 minutes later just thinking about it.

    However, if I have to choose one or the other, Mr. Johnson gets the nod. Such dignity and devotion to his wife.

  5. “Mr. Johnson”. Not even close.

    And I say that while acknowledging that “Pink Gorilla” is a great story.

    However, “Mr. Johnson” is beautiful, and beautifully put together.

  6. I have no doubt which is my pick.ย ย  Mr. Johnson's story was touching on so many levels.ย ย  An amazing piece, LawDog.

  7. Loved both stories, but have to say Mr. Johnson is the better of the two. Or maybe more accurately, Mr. Johnson touched my heart while the pink gorilla just touched my funnybone.

  8. Pink Gorilla Suit.

    I’m part of the VFD. I’m an EMT. I see those stories entirely too often – You did a truly great job portraying the feel, the emotions, and the effects.

    I’d rather have a good laugh any day – and not to be callous, but I see death on an all to frequent basis. I see real humor (particularly a cop in a pink gorilla suit!) much less often.

    And I’d rather laugh than cry any day.

    Orion

  9. Given my druthers, I’ll put in a word for Mr. Johnson. Folks can usually find humor in almost anything, but it takes heart and soul to share the sorrowful parts well.

  10. Tough call.

    Gorilla is funny, but the Johnson story is far more “important”.

    If you’re collecting an anthology they both should be in there.

  11. Unfair choice. Two very different flavors presented extremely well.

    Without knowing what sort of context you are intending to place these stories, I’d go with Mr. Johnson.

  12. The story of Mr Johnson pierces me right *here*. It’s a beautiful story beautifully told that brings a tear to my eye.

    I must go with the Gorilla story because it makes me laugh.

    Life has enough sadness without drawing attention to more of it. On the other hand, perhaps for Mr. Johnson it was a happy ending.

    Damn, just damn.

  13. Pink gorilla suit. Reasons to follow.

    I love both the stories, for different reasons. Knowing the reason for choosing would be helpful in making a choice.

    Forced to choose, I go with the Pink Gorilla Suit. Truthfully, though, I prefer the ones that you write that have more of a moral behind them, such as the story of the lizard that got revenge, or the “Work smarter, not harder” story.

    Mr. Johnson, however, tugs at the heartstrings and causes a tear to well up. It’s brilliant writing, with great emotional depth, but is a bit more generic than many of your other stories. There’s just something about some of your stories that are so much of YOU, that no one else would be able to tell them adequately.

  14. Mr. Johnson, without a doubt.

    I still love the pink gorilla suit story, though.

  15. the MR Johnson is a better story, but i laughed so hard at the ping gorilla suit, its hard to pick, but i have to go with Mr, Johnson I think it tells a better story.

  16. The first thing I read of yours was the Pink Gorilla Suit story. I came acrossed it as a link in another blog. I am now working my way through your archives. But I would still vote for the Mr. Johnson story.

  17. The Pink Gorilla makes me laugh a lot, but Mr. Johnson is the better story.

  18. Not sure I can choose, both are great stories. . . .

    I like Mr Johnson, but that would be a real hard one to read on a good day never mind a down one. . . .

    Pink gorilla is funny and has your style all over it. . .

    I guess I have to splunge and pick both. . . .

  19. I can’t choose.

    They are both great stories, unto themselves, but in different genres.

    It would depend if I wanted tears of joy or tears of sadness.

  20. Both amazing stories – but Mr. Johnson has a more powerful impact. If I had to, Mr. Johnson by a nose; but only if I had to

  21. Well, both – they’re both great, but with different purposes. I think I prefer a mix of humor to sad maybe 10 to 1 though.
    -Popgun

  22. Gosh, I hate HAVING to choose, but I like the Mr. Johnson story better. In it, you give a little slice of his life and tell so much about yourself in the process. I didn’t think it was sad, either. It was a grace note at the end of a life. ๐Ÿ™‚

  23. Must we chose? Is there no other option? If I must chose, Mr Johnson is a winner because it has as much impact today as it did when I first read it. Pink gorilla, while funny as hell, loses something on the fifth or sixth reading.

  24. Mr Johnson
    A sad story until you realize that he finished his life as he saw fit, In a place of his own choosing, surrounded by good memeories.
    Will

  25. So different it’s hard to say.

    Mr. Johnson is better in a poignant-to-the-bone literary sort of way. The writing and the subject both have more depth.

    But on the whole I prefer the upbeat Pink Gorilla story. If youโ€™re keeping a tally, put me down for that one.

  26. I am torn, like most of your commenters. They both solicit difficult emotions, one of longing and devotion, and one of laughter and incredulity. The Pink Gorilla makes people come to your journal, the Mr Johnson story makes them stay there.

  27. Glad you published ‘Mr. Johnson,’ b/c my forensics team will use it (slightly edited.)

    Can’t use “gorilla suit” for that purpose, but it was a fun read!

    Hands-down, “Mr. Johnson.”

  28. When you mentioned the Mr Johnson story, I wasn’t sure if I was thinking of the right one, but as soon as I followed the link, I saw I was correct.

    This is not because I have a great memory, or anything like that. No, it’s because that’s a powerful story extremely well-written.

    Hands down: Mr Johnson.

  29. They’re too different to force a choice, but I think I’d go with Mr. Johnson. Beautiful stuff.

  30. Mr Johnson.

    –Vic303

    (but please put both in whatever you’re compiling!!!)

  31. Very different tales. If I have to choose one, I chose Mr. Johnson. I remember reading it and being moved to memories of my own.

    The Pinky story was funny enough to make rocks cry, but it isn’t in the same class as Mr. Johnson.

  32. They. Skinned. Pinky.

    Both are spectacular stories and it’s only my visuals of Pinky that edged out the Mr. Johnson story. Tulips, fer cryin’ out loud.

    Pink Gorilla Suit, by a nose.

  33. Mr. Johnson, personally. But the Squeaks story above all ๐Ÿ™‚

  34. Mr. Johnson, personally. But the Squeaks story above all ๐Ÿ™‚

  35. One more vote for Mr. Johnson,

    I’ve had to track, em litterally, a couple of kids w/ downs.

    Hunting people is probably the hardest job, ever, anywhere.

    It is even harder when even they don’t know where they are going.

    At least Mr. Johnson was going home.

    r

    ps my ribs and my SO’s ribs and my son’s ribs are still hurting from the pink gorilla.

    Son almost lost lunch when Mauve was defined.

    r

  36. my God, that’s a tough question. I just re-read Mr. Johnson, and it still brings tears to my eyes.

    Pink Gorrilla brings tears to my eyes, too, but in a very different way.

    I’ll have to go with Mr. Johnson.

  37. In advance of reading the other comments, I wish to lodge a protest at the requirement to choose. The two bookend each other perfectly — Mr. Johnson for poignance and the Pink Gorilla for the hilarity of the human condition.

    I want both.

    M

  38. I will say Mr.Johnson as it touched my heart. And brought a tear to my eye. But the pink gorilla suit makes me laugh. I would like to see a little of both.With a critter story now anf then.Rick

  39. I loved the Pink Gorilla Suit story, but Mr. Johnson’s story was very powerful. Mr. Johnson gets my vote.

  40. Mr. Johnson is a tear jerking gut wrenching, wonderfully crafted story that by far is my favorite of all you writings.

  41. I’m sorry, Lawdog, but they just can’t be compared or any choice made between them.. They are just too completely different.

    I laughed out loud at the Pink Gorilla Suit and have read it several times since. I laugh every time.

    I cried when I originally read about Mr. Johnson. I knew immediately which story it was, but I read it again anyway. And I wept again.

    BTW – For what it’s worth, I am a 58 yr old male, ex-infantry officer. I did two combat tours and was wounded 4 times. I don’t cry over much.

  42. I’m sorry, Lawdog, but they just can’t be compared or any choice made between them.. They are just too completely different.

    I laughed out loud at the Pink Gorilla Suit and have read it several times since. I laugh every time.

    I cried when I originally read about Mr. Johnson. I knew immediately which story it was, but I read it again anyway. And I wept again.

    BTW – For what it’s worth, I am a 58 yr old male, ex-infantry officer. I did two combat tours and was wounded 4 times. I don’t cry over much.

  43. While the gorilla suit story is hysterical Mr. Johnson is a great story about how we can get wrapped in and touched by people’s lives. Mr. Johnson is my favorite story.

  44. Pink Gorilla Suit.

    They’re both absolutely INCREDIBLE, and it’s hard to choose, but as an ex-Paramedic, Mr. Johnson is a familiar story (though rarely told as well as you did). The Pink Gorilla Suit is nothing I’ve ever heard before, nor likely will again.

  45. I’m on the fence here as well. It really depends on what purpose you’re choosing the story for.

    The “Mrs. Johnson” story is very touching, a real piece of Americana.

    The “Pink Gorilla Suit” story is utterly hilarious (I was laughing out in tears as I read it), and probably has more appeal to the public in general. It obviously had more of a viral effect in the online community.

  46. Mr. Johnson is “better” work, but the Pink Gorilla made me laugh.

  47. I’m not going to read through the comments, I don’t want to skew my opinion.

    I have to go with Mr. Johnson.

    Almost anyone can tell a funny story and get a laugh, although you do it especially well. However, I think it takes real talent to draw a reader into a story and feel what I felt with Mr. Johnson.

    Of course, I want both. But since you asked….

    Mr Fixit

  48. Mr. Johnson.

    You have to have no sense of humor to not laugh at, “THEY! SKINNED! PINKY!” (A new catch phrase in the CW household BTW.)

    But you have to be one cold hearted commie to not get leaky peepers reading Mr. Johnson’s story.

    ArthurCW

  49. If actually forced to choose, I would pick Mr. Johnson.

    There’s something about the dignity with which you handled the whole situation and the absolute love Mr. Johnson had for his departed missus that tugs at the heart.

    I do absolutely adore the Pink Gorilla suit story though. It gave me a good belly laugh when I needed one.

    Here’s hoping you don’t have to choose.

  50. I have so much trouble picking because the stories are so different. Mr Johnson’s story is full of dignity and peaceful sorrow. The Pink Gorilla Suit story made me laugh so hard I almost peed my pants. They’re just too different to compare them.

    I think I pick laughter over sorrow. But it’s a tough choice and if I knew the context I might choose differently.

  51. depends on where you're submitting the story. For a "Chicken Soup for the Soul" type of book, Mr. Johnson's story; it made me cry AGAIN, the 4th or 5th time I've read it. Powerful stuff. For an article about life & real world adventures, Pinky; laughing out loud at work got me a lot of funny looks from over the cubicle walls.
    For the book you are starting to write (I'm correct about that, aren't I? or were you just teasing your loyal readers??) BOTH. MUST. BE. IN. THERE.
    Peggy, RN in Ohio

  52. DCP: I’m sorry, Lawdog, but they just can’t be compared or any choice made between them.. They are just too completely different.

    I laughed out loud at the Pink Gorilla Suit and have read it several times since. I laugh every time.

    I cried when I originally read about Mr. Johnson. I knew immediately which story it was, but I read it again anyway. And I wept again.

    Peggy, RN: For the book you are starting to write (I’m correct about that, aren’t I? or were you just teasing your loyal readers??) BOTH. MUST. BE. IN. THERE.

    What they said.

  53. *blank look*

    Er. I can’t. They’re utterly different animals. It’s like asking me if I prefer filet mignon or aerobatics.

  54. Ribeye or bourbon?

    Laughter or tears?

    Someone else’s stupidity, or someone else’s love and dignity?

    The only thing they have in common is that they’re both prose. So, because grief and love are harder to write well than humor that verges on the slapstick, I’d have to say “Mr Johnson.”

  55. I don’t like sad stories, life is sad enough without help.
    Funny stories are for the win.
    Gorilla suit all the way!

  56. Ian,

    Depends on what I’m choosing for.

    I really like both.

    Mr. Johnson, by a nose.

    Best,

    Byron

  57. The Pink Gorilla Suit is a hoot..but Mr. Johnson …I couldn’t move for a few minutes…and it was kinda blurry…must have been a glitch in the monitor…!!
    Definitely Mr. Johnson!

  58. I second what Mark said.

    “Er. I can’t. They’re utterly different animals. It’s like asking me if I prefer filet mignon or aerobatics.”

    He said exactly what I was trying to say.

  59. In the absence of any hint about context, I have to vote for the Pink Gorilla Suit. Mr. Johnson is a well written story, but it is a kind of story that is often written well.

    The Pink Gorilla Suit story is a kind that is often NOT written well. Here it has been. Further, it is more in the core “voice” that I have come to associate with the authentic LawDog – the voice of the Africa stories.

    If you are putting together a book, by all means include both. If there is REALLY only room for one, Pink Gorilla Suit. It is unique. Mr. Johnson is very, very good, but of a common type.

  60. I love it when you make me laugh, and I love it when you make me cry. I like to laugh more however, and would prefer the pink gorilla suit story.

  61. Mr Johnson, hands down. Humor is easy to find and bring out but real emotion is a bit tougher. Well done on both, but Mr J gets my vote.

  62. I’m going with Mr. Johnson. Amazing story written with a perspective that drips with honesty and impathy.

  63. Both good stories, Mr. Johnson strikes deeper.

    I’d go for Mr. Johnson…

  64. Both are great, but I think I like the Mr. Johnson story a little more…

    PeterT

  65. The two aren’t really comparable.

    I couldn’t tell you which was better any more than I could tell you which is a better food: Chili, or ice cream.

    They’re just excellent in their own way.

  66. Depends on your audience and why you need to choose.

    Mr. Johnson is, as many have already stated, a heart rending story that brings a smile along with the tears.

    The gorilla suit can also bring tears, but they tend to be ones of mirth.

    I think Mr. Johnson wins.

    but the Tragic Death of Santa Claus is one I prefer over the gorilla suit.

  67. Dead heat.

    Mr. Johnson made me cry.

    The Pink Gorilla made me cry.

    Pops

  68. I think both are good stories. The Mr. Johnson story speaks to me of nobility and human spirit. The story of the Pink Gorilla suit is hilarious. My favourite changes depending on my mood

  69. They are both a part of you. To leave either out would be a crime against the collection of memories that makes up the sum total of human existence.

    That said, Mr. Johnson has more meaning to me. That’s how I want to go, in another 70 years or so.

  70. Mr. Johnson made me cry. And I am a big man.

    I think that was the story that put you on my daily reads list.

  71. I’d say it depends on just why you were wondering. The Pink Gorilla Suit is the ultimate funny. Mr. Johnson is the ultimate tearjerker.

    If’n you were thinking of submitting something for some reason, I’d prolly lean toward the former.

    I’d do Pink Gorilla Suit over drinks.

    $0.02.

    tweaker

  72. Well, as has been said by several already, both brought tears to my eyes, one to laugh and the other to cry. Dear god, that rhymed… I vote for Mr Johnson, both because it is well written and full of dignity for the subject, and because I still haven’t gotten over the horror that befell Pinky. What did he ever do to you?

  73. Mr. Johnson.

    “The Pink Gorilla Suit” hammers the funny bone. “Mr. Johnson” tugs on the heart.

  74. can’t make a choice unless I know what I’m choosing for. Pink Gorilla Suit is hilarious; excellent prose wrapped around an absurdity. (“They Skinned Pinky” is a catchphrase at home.) Mr. Johnson is a beautiful story, again told beautifully (love the way you shade from snotty nurse through a picture of the man, to his lovely passing).

    both stories demonstrate that you write superbly — so it’s Mr. Johnson for sentiment and Pinky for humor.

  75. These are 2 very different stories, but I’ll go with Mr. Johnson. It has far more character development, wisdom and insight, though the Pink Gorilla was fun.

    Now about that book…

  76. They’re both awesome for completely different reasons.

    I’ll vote Mr. Johnson, though, for the same reason as striker_3- it made me cry, and that’s REALLY tough to do. In my eyes that makes it a more effective piece of writing.

  77. Both good stories, I read both after a hard days work (in a job I hate, but anyway…)

    Pink gorilla suit made me giggle and laugh…from galactic level stress to no stress in no time (air guitar was the last straw =} ).

    Mr. Johnson, same results but in a different way…When reading the story I moved from “FTW” to a dead-calm. serene. maybe a tear or two.

    Laughter and a good cry. Best stress relief there is.

    LawDog, You can make people laugh and cry.

    Thank you.

    *what* okok…Pink gorilla suit, photofinish result.

  78. They are both splendid stories. They are probably a perfect frame for what appears to be an amazing range as a story teller. The Pink Gorilla had me howling for hours.
    I must, however vote in favour of “Mr. Johnson”. As an EMT, I have followed up “wandering” patients. I almost hated to give them back to “Nurse Ratched”. The ending is a happy one, you know; Mr Johnson managed to escape from his incarceration in the “storage facility”. He went home-his steps as sure as when he was a newlywed of 25 or so-though maybe not as firm; he went home to join his beloved, and to embark upon their next adventure. He died triumphant.
    The thought came to me that if we could hear it from Mr. Johnson’s POV, it would bring to mind “The Road to Tinkhamtown” (do you know that one?)
    Kee ’em comin’ Lawdog!

  79. Mr. Johnson, for certain.

    I couldn’t handle a regular intake of such stories. I can read your humorous stuff as often as you can write it. Next time we visit, I may articulate reasons for my choice. Or not.

    JPG

  80. You’ve asked a question akin to, “Do you prefer orange juice, or blue.”

    Both stories are phenomenal, but different. Mr. Johnson has gravitas, the pink gorilla is humor beyond compare. Can’t we have BOTH?

    Formerflyer

  81. Mr. Johnson. Both stories are great, but Mr Johnson NAILS “bittersweet.” Pink Gorilla is hilarious, but it’s the difference between a Hall of Fame story and a Hall of Very Good.

  82. My father was in his last illness when the Mr. Johnson story came out, so I found it extremely moving.

    Pink Gorilla Suit is great, but on a completely different level.

  83. I’m gratified to see that most folks feel precisely the same way I do. (I don’t know if I’m tickled to find that my standards fit in, or that others’ standards are so high.)

    Mr. Johnson’s tale of homecoming was a masterpiece, and it makes my eyes burn a bit to read it yet. I’m glad that this is a rare style for you, because it makes me ache to read it, and I’d rather not become inured to that ache; it’s an important one.

  84. The story of Mr. Johnson is the more powerful of the two. Obviously it depends on the audience you are trying to touch…

  85. It’s like asking do you want Steak for dinner or Brownies for dessert. The only obvious answer is YES!!

    Bob Durtschi

  86. This isn’t a choice between apples and oranges — it’s the difference between mice and dinosaurs! There is NO way to make that kind of distinction. I would have said the Pink Gorilla, hands down, no question about it.

    Then I read Mr. Johnson.

    What a beautiful story of one old man, passing in the way HE wanted to go. Choices and human dignity. Wow… (and by the way, thank you for sharing that one, LD)

    So now the choice isn’t so clear. I love the hysterical Pink Gorilla, but can still feel the vibrations on my heartstrings from Mr. Johnson’s story.

    Whatever you’re going for, use BOTH stories.

  87. Hard to pick, but of those two, Mr. Johnson.

    You did mean for us to pick between the two specific stories, right?

  88. Mr. Johnson, hands down.
    The gorilla suit is good, and funny, but Mr. Johnson is about the real human condition.

  89. They aren’t comparable. Gorilla suit is just good humor. Mr Johnson is a timeless tale of love.

  90. The story of Mr. Johnson caused something to get in my eye and, it was some of the best writing you have done.

  91. The story of the Gorilla Suit was
    uproarious, but the story of Mr.
    Johnson touched me, reminded me of
    the importance of dignity, and made
    me forward it to several friends. If
    it has to be one of the two, the
    story of Mr. Johnson gets the nod.
    Anon, Don

  92. Mr. Johnson.

    The story of the pink gorilla suit is a side-splitter but… but the story of Mr. Johnson is simply overwhelming with too many emotions to catalog. Reading the gorilla suit, I laugh, catch my breath, and go on. Reading Mr. Johnson, however, requires quite some time to regain my equanimity. It has the greater impact.

  93. Mr. Johnson, both are great stories, but his is definitely my preference.

    -Rob

  94. I’d vote for Mr. Johnson as well, for the same reason that striker_3 left: that story made a grown man cry.

    I don’t leak around the eyes very often.

  95. Mr. Johnson

    The Pink Gorilla Suit is funny always.

    But the story of Mr. Johnson still brings tears to my eyes after 20+ readings.

  96. I’d go with Mr. Johnson.

    A Deputy Sheriff in a pink gorilla suit is funny, a man who takes care of some one like Mr. Johnson is sadly a rarer thing today.

    That said: both are excellent examples of story telling. I don’t think you’ll go wrong either way.

    AE

  97. I have to pipe up, here. People keep calling the Mr. Johnson story sad, but I just don’t see it that way. Here’s a man who went to the locale of his choosing to make his departure, warmed by the memory of happier times. Yes, it’s a bittersweet tale, but if you had the choice, wouldn’t you shuffle (or crawl) to a place of comfort for your last moments here? I would. Mr. Johnson found a way to do things on his own terms at a time when most choices about his own life had been wrested from his grasp. This was a story of liberation, and not one of tragedy.

  98. Mr. Johnson is a lovely tale but I got such a kick out of the Pink Gorilla. I have to go with the Gorilla.

  99. Mr. Johnson.

    The Pink Gorilla suit was a riot, but Mr. Johnson was powerful.

  100. While Mr. Johnson was heart rending, I have to go with the pink gorilla suit. The mental image of a deputy in a pink gorilla suit is not something I will lose anytime soon.

    Thank you for both stories. Made my evening.

  101. The pink gorilla story was very funny, but the story of Mr. Johnson was incredibly eloquent and made the reader feel a part of the experience. Mr. Johnson, hands down.

  102. If it is going on paper, Mr Johnson needs to be preserved!

    I didn’t recognize it by name at first, then I read the first paragraph. Although I knew the ending I was drawn through the narrative again, and the words were as compelling and riveting and as emotion wringing as the first time I read them.
    Mr Johnson is a masterpiece.

  103. The Pink Gorilla Suit was hysterical! But I liked the story of Mr. Johnson better.

  104. Mr. Johnson. Your writing style really brought that story to my mind’s eye. It has so many opposing emotions.

    Keep up the great work.

    Steve

  105. Choice between comedy and sad drama eh?

    Well, I’ll say that I’d rather read the pink gorilla suit story any day, as I’d rather be laughing than sad. But I can’t say which is the better story… probably leaning towards Mr. Johnson a little bit.

    I also think I prefer the story about the major(gecko) more than both. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  106. Jeez, we have to choose? If it’s a book, you really ought to use both – Pink to open, Mr. Johnson to close.

    Otherwise…Pink is danged hilarious, yes. But Mr. Johnson? That’s…literature.

  107. I gotta say Mr. Johnson. Even though I really love the Pink Gorilla Suit. It’s gotta be Mr. Johnson

  108. Mr. Johnson.

    However, I will admit, the Pink Gorilla Suit tale still has me chortling at odd moments. The Johnson tale is a poignant, heart felt and heart-wrneching story and, truth be told, is written in such a manner as to convey the full emotions of both the story-teller and that of Mr. Johnson.

  109. Mr. Johnson, without question. The simple elegance of the presentation and the dignity with which the matter was handled should be a guide for all.

  110. The pink gorilla is a great story; I think I’ve re-read it a half a dozen times, but… Mr. Johnson is something more than just a story. It is a tale that sticks with you deep down on the inside where it counts, so cast my vote for the elderly gentleman who proved that you can go home again.

  111. Do we *have* to choose? They’re both such very, very different stories!

    That said, Mr. Johnson’s story is touching and poignant and comforting all at the same time. That’s my vote.

  112. Mr. Johnson, out and away.

    The Pink Gorilla Suit tale was marvelously entertaining, but the story of Mr. Johnson moved me as few ever have.

  113. Deputy,I remember the story about Mr. Johnson and coming home. I told you then that you did good and even though I was amused by the gorilla suit I still will never forget Mr. Johnson.

  114. As much as I loved the Pink Gorilla suit story, and the anticipation over such a long period only heightened that, the story about Mr Johnson pulled all my strings. My vote goes for that one.

  115. Mr. Johnson. However, it depends on what kind of tone you’re reaching for. Mr. Johnson actually almost made me cry… and I don’t cry at funerals. Seriously.

    ~Vin

  116. I have to echo what so many have already said. Both are excellent stories, and so very different. Mr. Johnson was the more powerful of the two for me, though.

  117. Mr. Johnson.

    You can tell a rollicking good story, LawDog…but that showed a depth heretofore unseen. It was powerful.

  118. I LOVE the pink gorilla suit story, but the Mr. Johnson story has real depth.
    I’m glad I had the opportunity to read both, but I’d have to give the nod to Mr. Johnson.

  119. Just idly re-reading the comments, I thought a bit more about both stories. Chuckled to myself thinking about “They skinned Pinky!” but there’s a tear rolling down my right cheek.

    So I guess I’m going to have to go for the filet mignon.

    Mr. Johnson.

  120. The story of Mr. Johnson is the best thing you’ve ever written. It was profound, bittersweet, and moving. I cried and smiled at the same time, and that’s no mean trick, ‘Dog.

  121. Pink Gorilla. Mr Johnson was very moving, but also sad, and I prefer to laugh….

  122. I don’t wnat to choose. In fact, I REFUSE to do so!
    I had to go back and re-read the Mr. Johnson story, as I had forgotten it. It is well written, and tugs at the heart strings.

    The Pink Gorilla Suit story, on the other hand, is totally unforgettable in its hilarity. The visuals invoked by this story are priceless!

    One might inquire why we are being asked to choose? Both stories are fantastic, but are totally different genres. Asking us to choose without further information is like trying to compare apples and elephants. It simply can not be done.

  123. While the Pink Gorilla suit was hilarious, it’s also extremely sad and discouraging, to be reminded again the levels to which people can sink. “THEY. SKINNED. PINKY.” Nothing like sampling the wares, eh?

    Mr. Johnson, however, while also extremely sad, is also a reminder of the levels to which people can rise. The indomitable human spirit.

    With the current state of the world, I much prefer good news.

  124. the pink gorilla suit story is fun … but the mr. johnson story is great ..

    i vote for mr. johnson ..

  125. The Pink Gorrilla is funny, but I think Mr. Johnson shows just how well you can write… you evoke so much emotion…with so few, yet well chose words.

  126. Mr. Johnson, as it made me “tear up.”

    Reading the Pink Gorilla story was a hoot, but Mr Johnson brought tears to my eyes. I’ll be fortunate if I go out that way.

    I’m a retired, Airborne Infantry NCO and there’s damned little that make me “tear up” these days.

    Well done LD

    Cheers!

    Texas Ex-Pat

  127. Mr. Johnson.

    The Pink Gorilla Suit is one we’ve been waiting forever for. Light hearted humor, likely to be quoted often.

    Mr. Johnson’s tale is the one I recall in teh middle of teh night. . .

  128. Both. Each in its own turn for its own reasons. But I’m delighted to see that my two favorite-ever posts of yours are the two you’re choosing between.

  129. I’m yet another of the Mr Johnson crowd; the gorilla suit’s funny, but Mr Johnsons poignant

  130. Well, since the tale of the skydiving African Vengeance Gecko isn’t listed, I suppose I’d have to give Mr. Johnson the nod…

  131. Mr Johnson was touching. The Pink Gorilla suit is insanely funny.

    Do you want to amuse people, or affect them?

    For what it's worth, I've only told people (& forwarded the URL) for the gorilla story.

  132. The Pink Gorilla was hilarious. I’m glad you didn’t get shot, you wouldn’t want to go out like that. (How in the world did the Sheriff end up with a pink gorilla suit?) Mr. Johnson was the better story, it had more depth and emotion.
    I became curious as to the genesis of the Pink Gorilla story and started reading the older posts. I ended up reading them all. You need to collect your older stories so they are easier for newer readers to find. I loved the Africa stories, the Badger Trap, the Ninja Gecko, The Nigerian Space Program, land sakes, why did they let you live? They really aught to be published, maybe clean’m up a little and send them to Boy’s Life if they haven’t gone PC.

  133. Loved the gorilla suit, but have to vote for Mr. Johnson. OldeForce

  134. Mr. Johnson, LawDog. There is no, no comparison. “Mr. Johnson” is a story so moving, told so well, that I have no words of praise high enough.

    I’ll try anyway: “Pink Gorilla” is a very entertaining anecdote. “Mr. Johnson” is high tragedy, and I mean that without reservation.

    LogEyed Roman

  135. Impossible to choose.

    I think I like the Africa stories best. My FAVORITE of your stories to date is Squeeks and the python in the mongoosiarum/trunk. Your mom!!!

    Oh, and the coffeegrinder meets gunpowder! (if you and the Marine!Goth had grown up together, you would have been either BBF or deadly rivals LOL)

    But of the two you listed, Mr. Johnson – tugs at my heart strings even in memory. (But I loved the Pink Gorilla story, too.) Hard call, they are both such great stories and such different moods.

  136. I have to go with Mr. Johnson. A very touching story everyone should read or hear about.

    But Pinky – LOVE IT! Laughed for days.

  137. I am late to respond on this one.
    Sorry.

    I chose Mr. Johnson’s story, for the humanity it shows us. When your book is ready, I will buy it (several copies, as gifts).

  138. I like both – the funny side and the heart felt side… So keep both coming.

  139. I hate corny, screwball comedy.

    The pink gorilla suit rises above in a way that made me laugh until I needed my inhaler.

    I hate sappy-sentimental stories.

    Mr. Johnson made me cry while smiling.

    I refuse to choose because each is near the pinacle of its type.

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