Category Archives: Humor

Fugitive from Justice!


by Robert Gillis
Published in the Foxboro Reporter and the Boston City Paper 8/2006

And you thought you knew me.

Bob Gillis, the writer guy from the Reporter. Active in the community. Always eager to help. Always smiling, always cheerful. Devoted husband, beloved family guy. Humanitarian. Humble. Bob, the nice guy.

Law abiding citizen.

And now …

Fugitive from Justice. Grand Theft Auto.

How could such an idealistic life and career be brought down faster than Tom Cruise jumping up and down on Oprah’s couch?

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Spring cleaning can be an expensive proposition

By Robert Gillis
Published in the Foxboro Reporter May, 1996

After digging out from a record 47 feet of snow, the people of Foxboro have emerged from winter hibernation. Spring has returned in all its beautiful glory, although forecasters still worry about the impending snowstorm scheduled for much of June and July.

Last Saturday was the first nice day of the year, with temperatures reaching past 70. It seemed like everyone in town was out in the front yard in shorts, mowing the lawn, cleaning the barbecue, routing, weeding, and planting.

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Sharpen those Interviewing Skills!

 

by Robert Gillis
Published in the Foxboro Reporter, May 2006 and the Boston City Paper

Note: Recently I have found myself interviewing, and am blessed to have found a terrific new job. But it’s been a crazy month, and I thought some job-hunting humor was in order…

I have been taking note of the fact that many people look for jobs every day but many or most lack certain interviewing skills that hinder their chances of finding the right position.

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Get on the Spaceship!

by Robert Gillis
Published in The Foxboro Reporter 9/2005

I just watched a rerun of a Simpsons Halloween special, in which Homer’s Y2K incompetence causes the destruction of the Earth. Lisa and Marge leave for Mars on a spaceship full of the planet’s best and brightest, to start a new society, while Homer and Bart end up on a different spaceship, also full of celebrities, but headed for the Sun. Bart and Homer are horrified that their fellow passengers include Ross Perot, Dr.

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What happened to spring???

Winter - Sharon Train Station Woodsby Robert Gillis
Published in The Foxboro Reporter 5/2005

There’s so much going on these days, that I thought I’d get right to the heart of an important issue. When I was a kid, there was a popular margarine commercial. In it, Mother Nature got very angry because someone would give her some margarine that tasted so good she thought it was butter. Then she’d say, “It’s not nice to fool Mother Nature!” and unleashed lightning bolts, thunder, volcanic lava and raining sulfur.

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When bad colds happen to good people

Winter - Iciclesby Robert Gillis
Published in The Foxboro Reporter 3/2003

I finally have a title for my new book: “When bad colds happen to good people.”

Yes, I have a cold again and I’m not a happy camper.

I had bronchitis all of month (the same thing that killed the brontosaurus). I took my antibiotics (eventually) and I was better for a while, but last night, I started getting the body-aches, fever, and the “stuffy, sneezy, achy, need lots of meds so I can rest” feeling.

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Finding the perfect Christmas tree

Quincy Market Christmas Treeby Robert Gillis
Published in The Foxboro Reporter December 2000 and the Boston City Paper December 2006

When I was four, I tried to climb up the Christmas tree and knocked it down on top of myself. When I was 10, I nearly set the Christmas tree on fire by fiddling with the wires, causing a display of pyrotechnics that my mother reminds me about every chance she gets. For some strange reason, Mom continues to use an artificial tree every year.

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A treadmill for dogs?

by Robert Gillis
Published in the Foxboro Reporter, 1/1998

‘Twas a few days before New Year’s, and my beloved and I were braving the early morning cold to pick up baby food — well, food for our canine babies. The good veterinarian had long ago advised us that pups were getting a little pudgy and the six dollar bags of generic dry dog food we’d been feeding them was as bad for their systems as say, rock salt, so we’d switched to something more balanced, low-calorie, nutritious, vitamin enriched, and far, far more expensive.

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Handy Guide to Car Repair

by Robert Gillis
Published in the Foxboro Reporter in 1998 and the Boston City Paper 2006

Not being a member of wealthy society, my family and I all drive cars that are, shall we say, “vintage,” and most have such unusually high mileage that they make the guy at Jiffy-Lube raise an eyebrow and ask, “Really?” when we give him the odometer reading.

Be that as it may, the cars had all been running fairly well for some time, yet recently Mom, my sister and I all had car problems of varying degrees and complexity.

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Elevator Woes

by Robert Gillis
Published in the Foxboro Reporter, 7/1997

Not one of my best for sure; and actually a variation and redress of a paper I wrote in college for a creative writing course. It’s a sort of amalgam of bad elevator experiences. A shot at humor that in retrospect wasn’t too great.  Apologies in advance!


Few things in life are as terrifying as riding in an elevator. This terror has nothing to do with the fact that an elevator is little more than a flimsy metal box, precariously suspended dozens of stories above the floor of a dark and foreboding shaft by thin wire cables.

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Even Computer Geeks Are Not Immune From the Dreaded, “Bad Technology Day”

Computer keyboardby Robert Gillis
Published in the Foxboro Reporter, 2/1997

Last week, I had a “bad technology day.”

It started innocently enough last Saturday morning, when I decided it was time to finally change the outgoing message on our answering machine and drop the words, “Happy Holidays” from the greeting.

Simple enough and a task done many times before. I approached Herbie, our answering machine, and began the reprogramming. (I should note here that I ordinarily don’t give names to household electronics, but the answering machine says cute little messages like, “Hello, you have three messages,” or “That was your last message.

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Christmas Thoughts, 1996

Green Christmas Ornamentby Robert Gillis
Published in the Foxboro Reporter, 12/1996

A note from Bob, 1/2014: This is one of my very first columns for the Reporter and nowhere near anything I consider “good writing” it’s a bit too all over the place and has too many topics, but I include it here because it is one of the earliest efforts and shows my genuine gratitude for the privilege to be able to write for the Foxboro Reporter — something I still cherish to this day.

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This is an attempt to collect a debt!

06 Downtown - Jordan Marsh Entranceby Robert Gillis
Published in the Foxboro Reporter 9/1996

The mail box was bursting with the usual bills, catalogs, and sweepstakes entry forms. I ignored the shiny letter that told me I’d won a new car, ten gold bars, or a handy pocket comb, and junked the pre-approved credit card with the 26.5% interest rate, which I suspected was compounded hourly.

“Urgent, open immediately” on the next letter caught my eye, so I complied with the bright red instructions and tore it open.

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