Funny Times, November 2009

funny times november 2009The highlights from recent editions of Chuck Shepherd’s News of the Weird include a story from the  30 August collection about an alternative lifestyle catching on in Japan.    Some Japanese men and a few Japanese women have taken to carrying dolls around with them and identifying these dolls as their significant others.   One man “said he would like to marry a real, 3-D woman, ‘but look at me.  How can someone who carries this doll around get married?”  The 6 September collection included this story under the heading “can’t possibly be true”:

The August issue of Gourmet magazine highlighted the apparently high quality of sushi prepared and sold at a BP gas station near the intersection of Ridgeway and Poplar in Memphis, Tenn. A sushi chef works on-site and reportedly sells 300 orders a day. [Commercial-Appeal (Memphis), 7-23-09]

This issue includes some jokes that are old, but genuinely funny.  For example, “Planet Proctor” includes these old warhorses:

“If you try to fail and you succeed… which have you done?”

“The Tao does not speak.  The Tao does not blame.  The Tao does not take sides.  The Tao has no expectations.  The Tao asks nothing of others.  The Tao is not Jewish.” 

Jon Winokur’s “Curmudgeon” column preserves some funny lines this month as well.  From William “Blackie” Sherrod, “”If you bet on a horse, that’s gambling.  If you bet you can make three spades, that’s entertainment.  If you bet cotton will go up three points, that’s business.  See the difference?”  From C. Wright Mills, “Nobody talks more of free enterprise and competition and of the best man winning than than the man who inherited his father’s store or farm.”  From Ambrose Bierce, “Finance is the art or science of manging revenues and resources for the best advantage of the manager.”  Bierce’s point is made more emphatically by Fred Schwed: “A out-of-town visitor was being shown the wonders of New York’s financial district.  When the party arrived at the Battery, one of his guides indicated some handsome ships riding at anchor.  He said ‘Look, those are the bankers’ yachts.  And over there are the brokers’ yachts.’  The naïve customer asked ‘Where are the customers’ yachts?” 

M. D. Rosenberg makes some points.  For example: “Whenever someone says, “I’m not book smart, but I’m street smart,” all I hear is, “I’m not real smart, but I’m imaginary smart.”  And something I’d never thought of: “I wonder if cops ever get pissed off at the fact that everyone they drive behind obeys the speed limit.”  Also a question that I’ve been trying to answer for the last few decades, “How the hell are you supposed to fold a fitted sheet?”  I’ve seen it done- I saw my mother fold a fitted sheet neatly, so that it looked like it did when it first came out of the package.  That was in 1977.  She hasn’t done it since, and I’ve never come close.   

There are several good comics in this issue, a couple of them are embeddable.  Here’s a Keith Knight set of “Life’s Little Victories“:

little victories

And from Lloyd Dangle’s Troubletown:

they call me MISTER president!

It means something that Dangle is sticking up for Mr O (should that be MISTER O?)  Look at his take on the Nobel Peace Prize, and his comparison of lazy Republicans who ignored Bush-Cheney’s spending hikes with lazy Democrats who ignore Mr O’s continuation of Bush-Cheney’s wars, and you’ll see he’s no starry-eyed Obamaphile. 

If you find yourself wasting time online (“wasting time” = “doing things other than reading Los Thunderlads”) you’ll find this installment of Jen Sorenson’s (non-embeddable) Slowpoke sobering.


  1. cymast

     /  October 30, 2009

    A lot of odd stories seem to come out of Japan. It must be cultural.

  2. acilius

     /  October 30, 2009

    Would you say that any of your stories of your early childhood in Japan are odd? I know that VThunderlad’s stories of spending his late 20’s there are odd, but that’s to be expected in his case. Why would anything happen to VThunderlad wherever he might be if it were not odd?

  3. cymast

     /  October 30, 2009

    Yes, all of them. But then again, we were very odd people.

  4. acilius

     /  October 30, 2009

    My brother Tim was in Japan this week. I’ll ask him whether he had any odd stories.

    And Mrs Acilius and I just watched our latest Netflix movie; I’d put it on the queue years ago, it finally worked its way to the top. It was Lost in Translation, set in Japan.

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