Monday, 17 August 2015

Jay's Jokes - Part Two

A year ago, around this time, we lost Robin Williams and Lauren Bacall. At the end of that same week, my Father passed away. With that in mind, it seems only fitting that I present this joke from Jay.

Familial Sensitivity

Ted had been away at college for some time and decided to call home.

His little brother Bob answered.

After some chitchat, Ted asked, “How’s Minx the cat?”

Without missing a beat, Bob said, “Minx is dead.”

“Bob,” Ted said. “You know how much I loved that cat. Try to be a little more sensitive. Don’t just blurt out ‘she’s dead’. Ease into it.”

Bob asked, “Like how?”

“I don’t know,” Ted replied. “Why not say something like ‘you know how Minx used to sneak out of your bedroom window and up onto the roof? Well, she got up there just after it had rained. The roof was really slippery and we tried to coax her down, but she wouldn’t come inside. Then, to our horror, she lost her footing and fell. We did everything we could to save her, but alas, she was gone.’ Something like that.

“Okay,” Bob said. “I’ll try to remember that.”

“I appreciate your effort to be more caring and sensitive,” Ted said. “By the way, how is Dad?”

“Well,” Bob said. “You know how Dad used to sneak out of your bedroom window and up onto the roof?”

Tuesday, 14 July 2015

Jay's Jokes

Laughter has always been a big part of my life. My brother Jay and I found constant ways to amuse ourselves, at times to the chagrin of our long-suffering mother.

Throwing spaghetti at the ceiling to see if it was cooked comes to mind. This food-testing process naturally lent itself to other edibles being tested in a similar fashion. Peas won’t stick to the ceiling unless you butter them first.

Swearing at each other in Donald Duck’s voice was a staple. Cartoons were great educators. Jay would get me up early on Saturday mornings so we could watch Felix the Cat. When he found out I was soon to be born, he declared that I should be called Murgatroyd. He got the name from Snagglepuss, not the Gilbert & Sullivan operetta, Ruddigore, although, given my mother’s fondness for G&S, that wouldn’t surprise me either.

My mother and I used to drink tea and play games after supper. One night my brother volunteered to make the tea. In those days I took a lot of sugar in my tea. I’d drink it down until there was a big mouthful left and then swig back the last of it. Imagine my surprise when that last mouthful contained not only sugar, but a generous serving of ketchup as well.

Then there was the time my brother bet me that I couldn’t hold a used teabag on my tongue for five minutes. Go ahead. Try it.

He used to wake me up for school by yanking up the covers and slapping a wet washcloth on my feet.

Don’t get the wrong impression. The anecdotes above were all part of normal brotherly activities. I haven’t mentioned how Jay would buy me toys and colouring books with some of the money he would earn from part time jobs. He would take me bowling and to play mini-golf regularly. He’d take me to movies and generally look out for me. I love my brother very much.

Jay is an uncannily talented musician. He can play any instrument in a matter of moments after picking it up. I’ve heard him called ‘the best session man around’, and not just from him. I recall Jay shoving his trumpet mouthpiece into the end of the shower hose and playing tunes with it.

His time playing music in various venues also helped him gather the latest batch of jokes that were making the rounds. These he would share with me, sometimes in the wee small hours of the morning because he had just returned home and couldn’t wait to tell them. In the following few blogs I will pass along some of these gems. Keep in mind these are really old jokes, so more than likely you’ve heard them before, but they’re still funny. Here’s the first one:

Karate Dog

The neighbourhood a couple lived in was constantly being burgled, so the husband said to the wife, “We need a dog. A big, hulking, vicious dog with huge paws and teeth to match. His bark should rattle the walls. Go get us a dog.”

The wife said, “Okay.” And off she went to the local pet shop.

The shop owner greeted her cordially and asked what she was after.

She explained how her neighbourhood was under siege by vandals and thieves and how her husband had instructed her to get a big, nasty, vicious dog.

“Ah,” said the pet shop proprietor. “I have just what you need. You need Karate Dog.”

“Karate Dog? What’s that?”

“Here, let me introduce you.” He goes away and comes back with the scrawniest little dog ever seen. It’s sitting in the palm of his hand.

She starts laughing. “Him? No, no. My husband wants a big, brute of a dog.”

“This dog,” explains the shopkeeper, “will meet your needs quite well. Allow me to demonstrate.” He looks at the miniscule pile of fur in his hand and says, “Karate Dog! That pile of bricks!”

With a startling ‘Hiiiiiiyah’ the dog leaps from his palm, flies across the room and reduces the brick pile to nothing more than dust. Then it calmly returns to sit by the side of the shopkeeper.

The woman is stunned. “That’s amazing. But will he obey me?”

“Certainly, he is fully trained and ready for a new master. Try him.”

“Okay,” she says. “Um - Karate Dog! That chair!”

Hiiiiiiiiyah! The chair becomes a pile of kindling and sawdust.

“Marvellous,” she says. “I’ll take him. And here’s a little extra for the chair.” So she takes Karate Dog home to meet her husband.

“Did you get the dog?” Asks her husband.

“Yes, right here,” she replies, revealing the minute life form in her hand.

“That?” Her husband says, incredulous. “That thing couldn’t protect himself, never mind protecting us.”

She tries to explain. “But you don’t understand. This is Karate Dog.”

And he says, “Karate Dog my ass!”


Wednesday, 8 July 2015

Survey Says

One of the jobs I had while in the employ of a market research firm was to edit responses in order to clarify what the respondent said. (This was chiefly to correct spelling mistakes made by the interviewers as they typed in the responses.)

The post office commissioned a study of their independent outlets. Here are some samples of what came across my computer screen.

“We have a good relationship with the salad people.” (I’m pretty sure they meant ‘sales people’, unless those tomatoes were attacking again.)

“I have no opinion. I am completely neutered.” (Ouch. Cut backs at the post office were really out of hand.)

“I have never had ant problems.” (It’s no picnic working at the post office.)

“Mail shipped to Labrador can be coastly.” (It’s on the east coast, so, good job post office.)

“He calls me regularly to see how thongs are going.” (I’ve heard it called ‘butt floss’, so… )

“He always responds in a prompt manner.” (If we don’t prompt him, he doesn’t respond.)

“They deliver mail in good shape.” (We never get flabby mail.)

“I call it medium service.” (It’s predictable.)

Tuesday, 30 June 2015

CSI: Cat Scene Investigations

There are two cats in our household. Notice I said, ‘there are two cats’, not ‘we have two cats’, or ‘we own two cats’. No one ‘owns’ a cat. You may be a cat’s human, but no cat is ‘your cat’.

These two fuzznicks rarely get along. One is fine with the other, but the other would prefer that the first one didn’t exist in her world. The one time they do co-operate is when it comes to crimes perpetrated within the house. The following is an account of one such incident.

Me: Who knocked over this plant?

Both cats: It wasn’t us.

Me: Oh no? You two were the only ones home.

Cat 1: Maybe it was the wind.

Cat 2: Yeah, the wind. (Turning to Cat 1) The wind whooshing out your arse.

Cat 1: (To Cat 2) Shhhh (mumbling) Not as strong as the wind whistling between your ears.

Me: The windows are closed, so it couldn’t have been the wind.

Cat 1: It was the invisible Mexican ninja dog.

Me: What invisible Mexican ninja dog?

Cat 1: The one who busts into homes and kicks over plants. He’s from Mars and his mission is to destroy all plant life.

Me: A Mexican Martian invisible ninja dog? Really.

Cat 1: Yep. Are there any plants on Mars?

Me: Not that I’m aware of.

Cat 1: See? He’s already destroyed his own planet’s plants and now he’s come here to do the same to ours.

Me: How do you know the invisible ninja dog is from Mars?

Cat 2: ‘Cause he had a green moustache.

Me: An invisible green moustache?

Cat 2: Yeah.

Me: If he’s invisible, how did you see his green moustache?

Cat 2: Oh. I hadn’t thought of that.

Cat 1: (swiping at Cat 2) Idiot. We’re cats. We can see things hum-mans can’t. That’s how. Out superior eyesight allowed us to view the perpetrator.

Me: You mean the same incredible eyesight that needs a night light after 8 p.m.?

Cat 2: It gets too dark. (voice trails off)

Me: What about the Mexican part?

Cat 2: Oh! I got this one. He was wearing a sombrero.

Me: Of course he was. And he was in ninja garb, too, I suppose. That’s how you could tell he was a ninja.

Cat 1: Nope. It was the throwing stars on his collar that gave him away.

Me: How silly of me.

Cat 1: Yeah. And the way he ninja-kicked over the plant. Does that explain everything to your satisfaction?

Me: Almost. If an invisible Martian Mexican ninja dog knocked over the plant, then where did these cat paw prints in the soil come from?

Both Cats: Look out! The invisible Martian Mexican ninja dog is back!

Me: (turning) Where? Where?

Both Cats: And we’re outta here!

Me: Get back here!

Tuesday, 2 June 2015

Nice Handle-Bar Moustache Facebook

I read an article the other day, written by one of the 'experts' who is good at blowing smoke out their asses, about the decline and fall of Twitter. The message was that Twitter will have to be put down like a cat with distemper. It was a disturbing and wildly inaccurate hypothesis based on spinning numbers.

Twitter must and will survive.

Comparisons are made between the social media networks. Twitter is an inclusive, open society. There is engagement on Twitter. Anyone can get involved. An ordinary person can have a conversation with a celebrity, politician, or other world figure. This is not one-sided. More often than not, the 'celebrity' engaged by the common folk will either respond or at the very least, favourite the tweet. Facebook is an exclusive, closed prison. You must be 'friends' with the people you want to deal with. Post something on a company or group wall (if you have 'liked' or joined that page) and you are not likely to receive a response.

Twitter gives friendly notices that someone has mentioned you. Facebook may or may not tell you and when they do they beat you to death with notices on your home page and via email. Facebook is like that whiny kid who always talks about themselves and wants everyone to pay attention to them exclusively. "You haven't been around in the past 24 hours. Do you like my shoes?" *sniffle *sniffle *whine *whine

'Promoted Tweets' aren't nearly as intrusive as Facebook's splattering of ads all up and down both sidebars and in the news feed.

Unlike Facebook, Twitter doesn't change its policies every time a dog farts.

On Twitter, the content you post is yours. On Facebook, anything you post belongs to them and they will do with it as they please.

Both have great numbers of duplicate accounts. On Facebook that's because once you sign up you can never leave. On Twitter it's because people have personal accounts and business accounts. The level of engagement actually goes up with these duplicate accounts because it's easier for people to find each other.

Facebook mines data like a toothless prospector down to his last dime and sells those nuggets to governments and corporations. Twitter takes a mild interest in what their users are doing.

Twitter is the good, friendly guy. Facebook is the conniving, manipulative guy. Twitter is involved with the Open Source community. Facebook wants everything to be proprietary.

Watch out! Soon Facebook will be tying you to the railroad tracks and demanding you sign over your mortgage.