February 2000
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posted 02-20-00

Dance Floor Mystery "Uncovered"

The good news is we have definitely solved the mystery of what caused the Room 3 and 4 dance floor to buckle. The bad news is the problem isn't that easy to fix. To read all about it, click here.

posted 02-20-00

Susan Schroeder Wins the January Joke Contest

Susan Schroeder won the January SSQQ Joke Contest with her submission of the entertaining joke "Skinny Dipping". It was Joke #24 on the Blue Side and told a story about a young man who decided to sunbathe nude on a deserted beach only to be suddenly awakened by the arrival of two women. Naturally hilarious consequences were to follow ! (or the joke wouldn't have won !)

Second Place was captured by Mike Gerstenberger's joke about The Ballerina, a Honky Tonk Woman who inspired one drunk to assume she must be a member of the Royal Ballet Company. 

Third Place was shared by Debbie Awad and Bill Mayo. Debbie sent in an amusing story titled Incognito about two priests on vacation trying desperately not to be noticed by anyone. Bill Mayo's story titled Redneck Logic was a bit naughtier. It was a story about two West Virginia rednecks who find just a little education can lead to some pretty startling conclusions. You can find it over on the Blue Side. 

Honorable Mention went to the following Jokes :

Clean Side :
January 02:  Blind Man Jumping - Bill Mayo
January 07:  The Bridge - Rich Barrett 

Blue Side: 
January 15:  Engineer Joke Number 2000 - Sylvia Tucker
January 17:  Venus and Mars, Chapter 2001 - Leo Skiba
January 20:  How to Drive Your Woman Wild - Lynn Bevis
January 22:  The Best Weight Loss Plan Ever - Susan Schroeder

Susan Schroeder narrowly missed tying herself for First Place. Personally I thought Susan's joke about the Best Weight Loss Plan Ever (#22) was the best joke of the bunch. I nearly fell to the floor on that one. However we have already discovered that I have a very poor sense of humor. I know this because all my students tell me. This I can live with because I believe the threat of my telling a joke or a story is so repugnant that my class will do anything I ask them if I just promise not to tell a joke

But what really hurts is that despite having more practice voting for jokes than anyone at the studio, I have NEVER come close to winning the Best Joke Judge award. Now that hurts, especially this month. Almost half the judges won the award, but I wasn't even in the running. Tsk. This month's Best Judges were Chris Holmes,

If you have a good joke, please submit it to Rick Archer at dance@ssqq.com  In a couple days I will publish the best jokes of February, but there is still plenty of time to send in some new entries.

Congratulations again to Susan Schroeder. Your joke beat out 100 other entries. Nice going !!

posted 02-20-00

Naked Vandal Caught on Videotape

In a story from the Houston Chronicle dated February 18, it seems that the owners of the Tottenville Inn Restaurant in New York City had been going nuts trying to figure out who was stealing from them. It seems their supplies mysteriously had disappeared on a systematic basis, but they were unable to determine which of their employees was responsible. 

At first the restaurant owners tried heightened scrutiny of their employee's activities, but when their observation turned up nothing while their supplies continued to disappear, they felt a covert Videotape camera was their only recourse. 

To their dismay, the camera turned up absolutely nothing. The supplies still disappeared, but the camera recorded nothing suspicious or out of the ordinary. Vintage wines, expensive meats and seafood continued to vaporize into thin air with alarming regularity over a six-month period. 

It took an accident to finally break the case. One morning after reviewing the previous day's activities, one of the owners, Michelle Macula, became distracted and allowed the videotape to keep running in the VCR. When her attention returned to the VCR a couple hours later she was stunned to see that the videotape contained pictures of her landlord traipsing through the restaurant bare naked helping himself to drinks at the bar and food from the refrigerator. 

Then she realized what her mistake had been. She and her partner had only reviewed the portions of the videotapes for the day's activities during business hours. It had never dawned on her the problem might be occurring at 4 am since no one had keys but she and her partner. Now by accidentally leaving the tape running, she was flabbergasted to discover who the culprit really was - her landlord Albert Hohmann. It seems Mr. Hohmann, a New York firefighter, lived upstairs and rented the first floor and basement to the Tottenville Inn. Several times she had mentioned the shoplifting problem to Mr. Hohmann, who said he had never noticed anything out of the ordinary while the restaurant was closed.

To add insult to injury, Mr. Hohmann would not only steal food, but periodically commit minor acts of vandalism. The day before his arrest, he was taped turning on water taps and flooding the restaurant.

posted 02-20-00

Intrepid SSQQ Volleyball Players Stage a Marathon 02-19-00

On Saturday morning, February 19, 16 valiant athletes engaged in an afternoon of spirited Volleyball action for 4 non-stop hours of play. We rarely took breaks of more than 10 minutes between games and ended up playing 11 games in all. The weather was gorgeous and everyone showed up close to 11 am, so we started very quickly. 

To read more about this Volleyball event, click here

posted 02-15-00

SSQQ's Favorite Astronaut in Outer Space

As I sipped my morning coffee and turned on CNN, there speaking to us from Outer Space was none other than Astronaut Janice Voss. 

In case you don't know, I owe Janice a huge favor for single-handedly winning the SSQQ Balloon Race for the home team two years ago (Click here to read about her astounding performance !!). Every now and then Janice stops by at SSQQ for some dancing at one of our Saturday parties. I think Janice prefers that the whole world doesn't know who she is. She probably comes to our studio to unwind and have fun like normal people do and here I am revealing her presence. Fortunately for Janice, no one knows what she looks like, so my guess is she will be able to continue to have fun right in your midst. 

It was tremendous fun for me to see this accomplished woman speaking in such a polished fashion to the reporter from CNN asking question about how the crew intended to handle a fuel problem related to a radar antenna thruster. Janice was so calm. The Japanese astronaut at her side was asked a question after Janice, but his language problems caused him to hesitate, so Janice coolly covered the answer for him and told the reporter to ask the next question to the Japanese Astronaut. 

Sometimes we take all the people at SSQQ for granted, but I have found there are some incredibly talented people who come to the studio and have fun getting to act like a normal human being once in a while. We have had doctors, lawyers, judges, TV personalities, you name it, come through the studio, but always incognito. It is such a thrill to have someone as talented as Ms Voss join us periodically. Personally I think she should learn Whip. She would feel right at home in our famous Martian Class. 

Come back home Soon and Safely, Janice !!  Maybe she can join us at the Honky-Tonk Party. Faded jeans have got to be more comfortable than that gear I saw her wearing on the space shuttle.

PS - Janice dropped by the studio for the "Jukebox Saturday Night" dance party on March 25. She was pleased to find we have been following her exploits in outer space. She said she has footage of her and a fellow astronaut Ballroom Dancing in outer space. Now that I would like to see! 

I asked her what song they danced to and if I remember correctly she said "The Purple People Eater". 

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posted 02-14-00


The Blue Side of Town is a secret naughty joke page hidden as part of the SSQQ Web Site. In the past, some of the jokes have been raw, but for the most part they are good, clean jokes with some reference to a subject that has three letters, begins with "s" and ends "x". You don't expect me to spell it out for you, do you??  

For the most part, these jokes are pretty funny as well. Personally, I have always preferred the Blue Side to the Clean Side (to visit the Clean Side, click here)

I had a teenage girl trick me into giving her the Blue Side address back in September. This was the one month where the humor was probably the most perverted of any month by a wide margin. I just cringed. That is when I had to change the address and become more strict about who gets the joke address. 

On the average, I get 20 requests a week for the Blue Side, most from people I have never heard of in my life. I believe the people for the most part are just "surfing" for jokes, stumble on my web site, and ask for the address. I feel uncomfortable giving out the address since I have no idea who they are. I thought I would slow them down a little with a new policy... send me a good joke and I will send them the address. I figured 90% of the people would never lift a finger to bother, solving my problem. 

However, I never counted on Lauretta. She threw me a curve I never expected. Lauretta wanted that address and was determined to get it. Quite frankly, I have to tell the truth. I decided to give her the address in self-defense. I was afraid she might send me another joke. Decide for yourself if I did the right thing.

Subject: Request for the Blue Side Address.

Dear Rick,

I just found your site and have spent all afternoon reading some great jokes.  I think I’m ready for the Blue Side. Please send me the address. Thanks.  Lauretta 

Reply: Dear Lauretta,

Lauretta, you might not have seen the policy on the Blue Side. Here it is:

Note : To Visit the SSQQ Blue Side, you will need to get the Address from Rick Archer. You can email him at dance@ssqq.com Unfortunately the address is not free. You will have to send him your best joke.

If it is not worthy, he will kindly tell you so and give you another chance.

So, Lauretta, send me one that makes my ears burn !!

Reply: Blue Side 

Dear Rick, 

I’m terrible at remembering jokes, but here’s one from my childhood in snowy Minnesota: 

What’s the difference between snow men and snow women? 

Answer:            snow balls

Then there’s the one about the toothless old termite who had to gum his food.  He walked into a saloon and asked, “Where’s the bar tender?”

I hope these are funny enough, or I’ll have to give up for the time being. 


My Reply: Dear Lauretta,

Well, I have to be honest, but, well, let’s just say I can tell you tried hard. Your effort is what counts. “Snow Balls” ??  I am actually smiling a little. Nice try. Oh, by the way, here’s the blue side address anyhow just in case you are tempted to send me another joke.


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posted 02-06-2000

The story of the Texas A&M began with the Trademark Infringement letter you see immediately below. Since then it has reached its seventh stage as of 4-5-00. To read more about this absurd situation, click 

The Big Texas A&M Snafu

Letter 1
Subject :          Trademark Infringement: Use by SSQQ of the term “Aggie”
Date :               Friday, February 4, 2000

To SSQQ Dance Studio -

I have copied Tobin Boenig of the Collegiate Licensing Office at Texas A&M University on this communication.  I request that SSQQ contact him immediately. His phone number is (409) 845-4621.

Your use of the term “Aggie” in your advertizements in the “Leisure Learning” Magazine found in grocery stores all around Houston and prominently displayed on your website “ssqq.com” IS AN INFRINGEMENT ON A TRADEMARK HELD BY TEXAS A&M UNIVERSITY.  I personally do not have the authority to prevent you from using the trademark as I am not a University official, but it was my understanding that Mr. Boenig was issuing a Cease and Desist Order to your company after he and I talked several months ago.  The term “Aggie” and the logo of Texas A&M is trademarked (by a state trademark) in the state of Texas by TAMU.

I am the Special Events Director of the Aggie Professional Forum.  We are a non-profit organization associated with other Houston area A&M alumni clubs, the Houston A&M and Reveille Clubs, through a Houston area coordinating board.  Our purpose is to raise scholarships for current students of Texas A&M University.

Alumni organizations are permitted by the University to use such terms.  A year and a half ago, we began teaching “Aggie dance lessons” that are taught by former Aggie Wranglers (a dance troupe on campus).  Our biggest selling point to Aggie alumni in Houston is the fact that they are taught by former Aggie Wranglers, in general our draw is that they are “Aggie classes taught by Aggies with Aggie dance steps.”

Let me preface the following by saying, since you have not already refrained from using the trademark, I am assuming that the University has not actually contacted you yet and that you are, to date, unaware of the trademark infringement.  And to the best of my knowledge, SSQQ does not own or otherwise diect the business decisions of Leisure Learning magazine.  When we began teaching “Aggie dance lessons,” we contacted Leisure Learning magazine in hopes to advertize.  I don’t have to tell you how effective that magazine is in Houston for items such as dance lessons.  For dance lessons in Houston, the magazine is probably more effective than the yellow pages.  In spite of our motives to raise scholarship money, their direct response was that they “would not publish any advertizement that was in direct competition with SSQQ”.  Because of Leisure Learning’s uncooperativeness and, indirectly, your apparent hold on what we consider would have been our best avenue for advertizement, I am not willing to back down from the issue of your use of the trademarks (and detailed descriptions and references to A&M in your website).

Should you not refrain from using the trademarks, quite honestly, I (and I’m sure many other Houston area Aggies) would find it a blatant act of greed on both the part of SSQQ and Leisure Learning magazine and rather disgusting that you would contribute to end the noble act of raising scholarships for worthy students.

We are already fighting to keep our dance lessons going.  We are a volunteer organization that does not possess the dance lesson market presence that SSQQ has.  Your efforts to advertize “Aggie Jitterbug” directly undermine our efforts to raise scholarships.  I ask that you immediately refrain from advertizing your classes to draw upon Aggie alumni.

Stephen P. Huzar
APF Events Coordinator

Letter 2: SSQQ Response to the above letter :

Date :  Sunday, February 06, 2000

 Mr. Stephen Huzar,

SSQQ certainly means no harm in the use of the term “Aggie Jitterbug”.  Indeed, we use the term with respect. Similar in some ways to the dance known as “Swing”, the dance we call “Aggie Jitterbug” is frequently used up at Texas A&M. The term “Aggie Jitterbug” has a high recognition factor here in Houston since many of its graduates move here after completing their education. People see this form of dancing used in the clubs, ask what the dance is called, and more often than not are told it is “Aggie Jitterbug”.

I have always had the greatest respect for Texas A&M. Back in the early 80s, my veterinarian told me my border collie had an inoperable tumor and offered to put her to sleep on the spot. I decided to get another opinion and was referred to an A&M-trained vet named Dr. Johnson. He said he had heard of an experimental treatment up at College Station. He went out of his way to ask a colleague to accept my dog into the program. I drove up to A&M, left my frightened dog at the clinic, and came back for her a week later. The tumor was completely gone, dried up by the cobalt treatment. There were no side effects and my dog lived happily another eight years. Not bad for a dog the first vet offered to put to sleep.

This of course is the type of memory I prefer to have for A&M rather than some ridiculous threat over a dance class of all things. I would never attempt to exploit your university in any way.

I have an A&M graduate on my teaching staff named Rachel Seff. She is not only enormously talented, Ms Seff just happens to be your University’s 1999 recipient of the Harris Award for Community Service, an honor I was pleased to announce on my dance studio’s web site. If you don’t believe me, visit this page: http://www.ssqq.com/grapevine99.htm You will have to scroll towards the bottom since the entry is dated 12-09-99.

If you are indeed serious about trying to raise scholarship money, I will allow Ms. Seff to teach an “Aggie Jitterbug” Crash Course on a Saturday night at my studio in conjunction with your organization. I will work with your organization in an attempt to promote it. All proceeds will go to your scholarship fund.

It is a shame you didn’t contact me in a nicer tone. I certainly did not appreciate your heavy-handed bullying tactics. In the future you might find you accomplish more with chocolate than acid.

Rick Archer

SSQQ Dance Studio
Houston, Texas

(For those of you who wish to know what SSQQ says about “Aggie Jitterbug” on its web site, please visit this address: http://ssqq.com/information/descswng.htm)

Letter 3 : Stephen Huzar's Second Letter, his reply to Letter 2

Mr. Archer -

I appreciate your warm esteem towards Texas A&M.  More importantly, it appears I owe you a huge apology.  By describing the chain of events below, I am not trying to rationalize my original message - it appears I was undoubtedly mistaken as to SSQQs willingness to associate with us.  Please accept my unqualified apology, but please let me explain as well, for I do not want your perception of me or of A&M, the APF or any other A&M alumni organization in general to be impaired.

Stephen Huzar

To read more about this absurd situation, click 

The Big Texas A&M Snafu


 posted 02-06-00

SSQQ Volleyball In Action 02-05-00 

SSQQ Volleyball swung back into action at Rick Archer’s backyard volleyball court on Saturday, February 5. Fourteen athletes came together for 3 ½ hours of spirited play. We had intended to play the Saturday before, but had to call it off when the weather turned wet and cold. By waiting a week we were able to play in 65 degree weather with sun and beautiful clear skies. Waiting turned out to be a good move. 

To read more about this volleyball event, please click here

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posted 02-06-2000


Frank Abueg marries Rita Brown, Felipe Mendoza marries Linda Bonnet !


The amazing SSQQ Love Virus is responsible for two new marriages... except they happened a year ago. SSQQ has always claimed that for every two marriages we report, there are a few that we never even hear about. 


On Wednesday, February 2, I ran into Rita Brown at the dance studio. I hadn't seen her in several years. She said her husband Frank had to work late that night but would be back next week. I said I didn't know she was married. Rita smiled and said she and Frank were married last spring, 1999. Ah. Rita and Frank met here at SSQQ back in the early 90s so probably most of you do not know them. Nevertheless, they are both special people and I am happy for this great couple !! 


On Friday, February 4, I had lunch with Gary and Betty Richardson. During the conversation, Betty said she missed dancing with her friend Felipe. I asked what happened to him, worried that he was hurt or something. Betty replied that Felipe simply got married to a lovely lady named Linda Bonnet last spring and hadn't been around the studio for some time. Ah. That explained it. Realistically, when a couple gets married, their priorities change. The "Group" is no longer as important as the "Couple". This makes sense, but nevertheless it doesn't prevent us from missing our friends when they embark on this important new phase of their life. On a nice note, Felipe and Linda recently started taking classes again on Fridays and we hope they will continue to visit with us. Congratulations !


This new information raises the number of couples who met at SSQQ and got married last year to 14. We think this is pretty phenomenal number. Oddly enough, the organization SSQQ gets much of the credit, but realistically the SSQQ "Community" also deserves equal credit. If you are curious to know more about how the SSQQ "Community" works, click here: SSQQ : Where the Creatures Meet

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