Posts Tagged ‘jokes’

Wandering Facebook today brought us across this lovely snippet from our friend and reader Mimi in California.

“Today’s irony, brought to you by Hailey’s school:

“Let’s have a moment of silence for the deaf” at the end of the afternoon prayer.”

How thoughtful of them. Next week, poking our eyes out for the blind, no doubt.

marceauxAnyhow, it did remind us of the only joke we have ever consciously written. It ran thusly:

“So when Marcel Marceau died, did they hold a minute’s noise?”

Hardly enough to establish us as one of the world’s great humourists, but we are proud of it. Years later – and we never published the joke apart from gleefully sharing it with friends and acquaintances in the pub and over dinner – it was fed back to us from a comic in the UK. Amazing how the world works.

Marceau was a French actor and mime most famous for his stage persona as “Bip the Clown.” He referred to mime as the “art of silence,” and he performed professionally worldwide for over 60 years. As a youth, he lived in hiding and worked with the French Resistance during most of World War II, giving his first major performance to 3000 troops after the liberation of Paris in August 1944. Following the war, he studied dramatic art and mime in Paris.

In 1959 he established his own pantomime school in Paris, and subsequently set up the Marceau Foundation to promote the art in the U.S. Among his various awards and honours, he was made “Grand Officier de la Légion d’Honneur” (1998) and was awarded the National Order of Merit (1998) in France. He won the Emmy Award for his work on television, was elected member of the Academy of Fine Arts in Berlin, and was declared a “National Treasure” in Japan. He was friends with pop artist Michael Jackson for nearly 20 years, and Jackson said he would use some of Marceau’s techniques in his own dance steps.

Marceau’s work was frequently whimsical and humorous, but also often exquisitely beautiful and sad. Given that existentialism is basically a French invention, it is hardly surprising that he addressed it in his work.

His famous performance of “A Life” in three minutes was happily captured on film and is on YouTube with a number of his other history-making performances, and although the quality is very poor – it almost obscures the fact that he starts and ends in a foetal position – it is well worth viewing. What is fascinating is how he can create tension through repetition, can create suspense through inaction, and can provide shock through the tiniest changes in facial expression or bodily position. In a word: exquisite.

“If all the girls who attended Yale were laid end to end, I wouldn’t be in the least surprised.” Famous wit, author and socialite Dorothy Parker demonstrates her grasp of paraprosdokians ….

As you will know, Dear Reader, from my previous ramblings on the subject, at, a Paraprosdokian is a figure of speech in which the latter part of a sentence or phrase is surprising or unexpected in a way – often a pun – that causes the reader or listener to re-frame or re-interpret the first part.

It is frequently used for humorous or dramatic effect. For this reason, it is extremely popular among comedians and satirists. “Where there’s a will, I want to be in it,” is a famous and much-attributed paraprosdokian.

I love ’em, and so apparently do you – so I am grateful to my good mate Scashy for this new list. Enjoy!

1. Do not argue with an idiot. He will drag you down to his level and beat you with experience.

2. Light travels faster than sound. This is why some people appear bright until you hear them speak.

3. I’d love to agree with you. But then again, then we’d both be wrong.

4. War does not determine who is right – only who is left.

5. Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit. Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.

6. The evening news is where they begin with ‘Good Evening,’ and then proceed to tell you why it isn’t.

7. A bus station is where a bus stops. A train station is where a train stops. On my desk, I have a work station.

8. A clear conscience is usually the sign of a poor memory.

9. There’s a fine line between cuddling and holding someone down so they can’t get away.

10. You’re never too old to learn. Often something really stupid and intended for the young.

11. To be sure of hitting the target, shoot first and call whatever you hit the target. (This one is especially useful in business, I have found.)

12. Change is inevitable. Except from your office vending machine.

13. Going to church doesn’t make you a Christian any more than standing in a garage makes you a car.

14. My neighbour banged on my door at 2:30am this morning. Can you believe that: 2:30am? Luckily for him I was still up playing my Bagpipes.

15. The Grim Reaper came for me last night, and I beat him off with a vacuum cleaner. Talk about Dyson with death.

16. I woke up last night to find the ghost of Gloria Gaynor standing at the foot of my bed. At first I was afraid. Then I was petrified.

17. The wife has been missing a week now. Police said to prepare for the worst. So I have been to the charity shop to get all her clothes back just in case.

18. A mate of mine recently admitted to being addicted to drinking brake fluid.   When I quizzed him on it he reckoned he could stop any time.

19. I went to the cemetery yesterday to lay some flowers on a grave.  As I was standing there I noticed four funeral guys in big black hats walking about with a coffin, Three hours later and they’re still walking about with it.  I thought to myself, , “Well, they’ve lost the plot!”

20. My daughter asked me for a pet spider for her birthday, so I went to our local pet shop and they were $70.  Blow that, I thought, I can get one cheaper off the web.

21. Statistically, six out of seven dwarves are not happy.

22. I was at an ATM yesterday when a little old lady asked if I could check her balance. So I pushed her over.

23. I start a new job in Seoul next week.  I thought it was a good Korea move.

24. I was driving this morning when I saw a roadside assistance van parked. The driver was sobbing uncontrollably and looked very miserable.  I thought to myself, ‘That guy’s heading for a breakdown.’

25. I asked God for a bike, but I know God doesn’t work that way. So I stole a bike and asked for forgiveness.

26. Some people are like Slinkies. Not really good for anything, but you can’t help smiling when you see one tumble down the stairs.

27. Always borrow money from a pessimist. He won’t expect it back.

28. A diplomat is someone who can tell you to go to hell in such a way that you will look forward to the trip.

29. Hospitality: making your guests feel like they’re at home, even if you wish they were.

30. Some cause happiness wherever they go. Others whenever they go.

31. When tempted to fight fire with fire, remember that the Fire Brigade usually uses water.

And perhaps my personal favourite …

32. I seem to always miss my husband. But my aim is improving.

The Costa Concordia

There is something fascinating about the speed with which our society throws up funny but embarrassing jokes about events in the news. They are often cruel, like the events that spawn them, but sometimes very funny in a sort of wince-inducing way – this sort of graveyard humour seems to be society’s defence against the awfulness of the subject matter.

No one can (or should) take any real joy at an event in which people lost their lives, let alone the financial cost and the trauma for survivors, but some of these bon mots are nevertheless fascinatingly amusing. I particularly enjoy the last one. (No, don’t skip ahead.)

We enjoy them like a guilty secret, passed with a snigger from email inbox to inbox. What a curious species we are, to be sure. Anyone else knowing any other good ones, or other pithy examples of the sub-genre, feel free to post them.

Or if you have any insight into why we follows this course, if you’ll pardon the near-pun, do please share your theory.

The jokes start here:

The current plight of the Costa Concordia reminds me of a comment made by Churchill. After his retirement he was cruising the Mediterranean on an Italian cruise liner and some Italian journalists asked why an ex British Prime Minister should choose an Italian ship. “There are three things I like about being on an Italian cruise ship” said Churchill. “First their cuisine is unsurpassed. Second their service is superb. And then, in time of emergency, there is none of this nonsense about women and children first”.

The Italian army has been called in to help with the people from the grounded cruise ship … but they have now swapped sides and declared war on the survivors.

Wife: “Can I drive?” Husband: “No, I’m fine”. Wife: “Oh please let me, I really want to”. Husband: “NO!” Wife: “Tell you what, if you let me drive just for a bit, when we get home I’ll have wild, uninhibited sex with you all night”. Husband: “Really??” Wife: “Promise!” Husband: “Oh, go on then”. “… and that, your Honour, is the final entry from the black box on the cruise ship Costa Concordia.”

What’s the difference between and Italian Cruise Liner and a Goat? The crew will go down on a goat.

When the captain of the ill-fated Costa Concordia was asked if he knew where he was going, he replied “off course”.

Costa Concordia – the only cruise liner where the sauna is cold but the pool is at 90 degrees.

The captain of the Costa Concordia says he is not guilty of manslaughter and has witnesses to prove he was nowhere near the passengers who died.

The Costa Concordia is probably the most expensive thing to go down in Italy since Berlusconi’s last hooker.

News reports say the stricken Costa Concordia first listed to the left, then to the right. Bloody Italians … even their ships don’t know which side to be on.

Italian Police are still interviewing the Korean honeymoon couple found on the Costa Concordia as to the whereabouts of the rescue dog that first found them.

Italian divers searching the stricken cruise ship have found two Scotsmen at the bar. They’ve told the divers to piss off, as all drinks are included in the fare.

Costa Concordia – where you are guaranteed to get your drink on the rocks.

Attention passengers, this is your captain. We of Carnival Cruise Lines Costa Concordia welcome you to Italy. If you look out the port side now you’ll see the beautiful Tuscan sky, and to our starboard, you’ll see the old Italian navy.

So the captain of the Costa Concordia will soon be in the dock … more than can be said for his ship.

Man phones the model shop and asks have you got a model of the Costa Concordia. “Yes sir, we have one left”. That’s very good. Can you put it on one side for me please?”