The Value of Humor

As each one was sent into Paradise, the Irishman made an examination of his conscience and found cause to fear: he had never given anything to eat or drink, he had never visited the sick or the imprisoned.

I remember the story mom told about her brother, Joe, when he was a teenager. He was invited to the home of a new girl friend for the first time to meet her parents. At the close of the dinner meal Joe found that the mothers pie crust presented somewhat of a challenge. He pressed down so hard he broke the womans plate. This was not the good impression he had planned.

The following little story was told by Pope John Paul I (Albino Luciani ) in his 1974 Lucianis Letters.

Good jokes also employ certain other concepts concerning issues of technical style. One has to master the lead up technique which sets up the recipient for the punch line. This often involves the serial style, frequently employing a set of three situations with the last carrying the punch. Jokes about the priest, the minister and the rabbi would be a common example. Good News, Bad News is a common, setup. Sometimes the joke sort of misleads one in a different direction as a setup for a big surprise. In joke telling, one has to develop skill in timing. You cant tell a number of surprise jokes in a row, for example, or they will lose their impact. You must also make sure you have the attention of a group if you are telling a joke. There is nothing like sub conversations in a group to spoil jokes and require the retelling of punch lines with no more punch. The spontaneous response of a group of even only a few people can be an important ingredient of a jokes success. These points are not always possible to control, but being aware of their importance can help in the long run.



This is a joke, I agree, but it underlines the ct that no form of charity should be neglected or underestimated. Joy can become exquisite charity, if communicated to others.

Jokes are things which may be viewed many ways. They are often grouped by such subjects as: Persons (clergy, lawyers, kids), or Critical Statements (political, social commentary, putdown), or Technical Features (misunderstanding, surprise, good news/bad news). I thought it might be fun to try grouping them by Themes. Even though these might qualify to be placed into other categories, the thread of the theme can still be seen.

His turn came, and he was trembling as he looked at Christ examining the ledger.

Jack Bennys great success was due to using himself as the butt of much of his humor. He deliberately set himself up as a cheapskate, a vain man and a bad violinist. He made a career out of the thousands of jokes these concepts generated. Young people can do well to start with the Jack Benny model. People respect someone who can take a joke.

Now, I do not mean to suggest that we tell our children all our dirty little secrets. The last thing an immature mind needs is a parade of soiled linen. Every time they want to try something they should not do, they will reach into that reservoir of rationalization for another excuse. I am talking about the kind of dumb, silly, impulsive, self conscious, follow-the-gang kind of behavior which they can relate to. Show them what you looked like in those days of bell bottoms, weird hair styles that you-wouldnt-get-caught-dead-in today, and old style dancing. They need to recognize the temporary nature of things around them. Seeing these things which have come and gone so dramatically will help them make the choices that will make them resilient and able to move more easily from adolescence into adulthood.


They have to learn early on what is ir game and what is not. While it may be fine for Jimmy Durante to poke fun at his large nose and for Phyllis Diller to wisecrack about her hairdo, it would certainly not be in order to make the same remarks about Mr. Jones next door or Aunt Martha.

Help them develop a good, healthy sense of humor. There is a world of difference between a Jack Benny and a Don Rickles. I like and admire both of them. Each was right for his time and place. With adults miliar with his style he is fine, but I wouldnt want Don Rickles to entertain at a small grandchilds birthday party.

Everyone likes a good joke. It is a great icebreaker in new relationships. In addition to remembering the jokes and learning how to tell them, one also needs to acquire a sense of propriety. Inappropriate joke telling can be a social and occupational killer. You can never go wrong with clean mily-safe jokes. Young people need help in developing a good repertoire of safe stories to avoid the horrible blunder of a joke gone awry. Good humor can bridge the generation gap very easily. While adults may never comprehend the lanHumorguage being screamed into the loud music on modern recordings, and they may never appreciate a young ce with so much jewelry it looks like it fell into a box of fishing tackle, they will always enjoy sharing a good joke. Smiles always look good on all ces whether they have hardware or wrinkles on them.

It is important to remember something. If themes can remind one of jokes…it is also true that jokes can remind one of themes. Themes, like jokes, can play an important role in our lives, especially when they refer to human values.

Theres a story about an Irishman who, having died suddenly, approached the divine tribunal and was considerably worried: the balance sheet of his life looked irly poor to him. There was a line waiting in front of him, so he watched and listened.

It seems strange at first discussing such a subject. Isnt it a given? Doesnt everyone know humor is a valuable commodity? The more you think about it,new york asian escorts the more its reality sets in. There are thousands of people who need humor. The first who come to mind are the sick who need humor help to take their minds off their discomfort. There are prison inmates, persons bogged down with work pressures or with many needy children to care for. There are the young who have not yet learned social skills and fear rejection. There are people of all ages with low self esteem whose shyness keeps social contacts to a minimum. There are people who just cannot bring themselves to show warmth, caring or gratitude. Men in particular are noted for this. We have to learn to loosen up.

The Value of Humor

Even professional comics miss the mark. I have always enjoyed watching Jay Leno perform. As good as he is, and as good as his highly paid writers are, whenever he does jokes about the personal appearance of Linda Tripp or Monica Lewinsky, Humor I cringe. Jokes should be about what people do–not what they are. To paraphrase the old political slogan about the economy–Its the behavior, stupid. The fodder for jokes is to be found in exaggerating the foibles, vanities, bad habits, style of dress, figures of speech, blunders, silliness, surprise reversals of fortune, omissions, slips of the tongue, embarrassing moments, ironic statements, misunderstandings, deflated pompousness, greed, weaknesses, obsessions, incompetence, hypocrisy, impulsiveness, bluntness, boastfulness, and just plain goofs.

A Beautiful Story by Pope John Paul I

It is important that we teach young people the value of a good sense of humor. They have to learn that we adults are human, too. We also have done dumb things which brought on laughter at the time, even though we may have had to wait a while to see the humor in it. I can remember how much my sisters and I laughed the time my mother in a happy moment danced and kicked up her heels in the front hallway. Her shoe flew off and broke the window in the front door. It sort of redeemed me somewhat for the time I threw an apple at my sister, Mary, and she ducked. It went through the kitchen window. I was totally unsuccessful in placing the blame on her for ducking.

To the third: I was in prison and you visited me. And so on.

I hope you enjoy the story.

I remember a Christmas in particular when an elderly female relative, who was hard to buy for was given a bag of bird seed. This was a good choice because she was known to like animals. However, this gruff lady always had trouble expressing herself in any kind of tender way. The best she could manage in place of an approving Thank you was to grumble, Darn birds eat you out of house and home.

The first thing young people need to learn is that the overwhelming number of jokes that are successful are jokes which deal with the behavior of individuals and not their personal appearance. And even the behavior has to be correctable or controllable to really qualify. Dumb jokes are popular. I tell them all the time. However, these are jokes reflecting mistakes or blunders of basically normal people who should know better or wouldnt have said or done what they did if they took the time to think about it. It is very hard to make a joke at the expense of the retarded or mentally ill and have it turn out funny.

To the second: I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink.

Young people growing up need to learn not to take themselves so seriously. They need us to reveal ourselves as human. If mom and dad are always right and never make mistakes, they put forth an unrealistic role model for the children to imitate, and they will have a harder time finding themselves. They will constantly try to find chinks in your armor to validate their perception of you as they want you to be.


pf From: Pauline FarleyThe Value of Humor Date: March 7, 2001 7:55 PM

But now Christ raises His eyes and says to him: Theres not much written here. However, you also did something: I was sad, dejected, humiliated: you came, you told me some jokes, made me laugh, and restored my courage. Paradise!

After having consulted the great ledger, Christ said to the first in line: I see that I was hungry, and you gave me something to eat. Good for you! Step into Paradise!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s