MAUREEN BURNS: Sharing some silliness and snickers

By Maureen Burns • Last Updated 10:24 am on Monday, January 16, 2012

Maureen Burns

I read the whole Harry Potter series and saw the movies. Many of you did too, I’m sure. I felt I had to do it because I needed to stay current. So, when I read a quote by Ellen Degeneres last week, it made me laugh out loud and want to share it with others. Ellen said, “I can’t believe this is the last Harry Potter movie. It’s the end of an era. Who knows, maybe someone will turn it into a book.”

That kind of humor that comes out of nowhere and is just darn silly – well, it’s golden. We all need it and we need to share it when we hear it.

For many, many years, I have done a Christmas letter that is mostly cartoons. I search for cartoons all year. Some years are bountiful, some not so much.

I’m sure that some get our letter and think, ‘How irreverent!’ Some likely don’t even read it. (I need their names so I can cut them from the list.) It is getting, though, that people thank us for it. They say how hard and serious their daily lives are and how very much they need that ridiculous, silly collection of humor.

I have decided to share a few with you. Granted, they lose something without the artwork, but, hey, try and visualize. You can, hopefully, still get a chuckle out of them. If you do, be sure and share it that with someone else who needs a laugh.

A dog is in a store, looking at a display of aroma therapy candles. The candles are all colors and sizes and are displayed on shelves. Each candle is of a dog’s butt.

A nurse calls a patient into the doctor’s office and says, “The doctor will see you now. Please try not to upset him with all your medical problems.” Another doctor is in with a patient who is sitting on the table. The patient has one leg on a stool. The doc says to him, “Have you tried limping?”

Another doc says to his patient, “Your insurance won’t pay for an expensive procedure, so we’ll be doing your colonoscopy with my cell phone camera.”

We are all aware of the new meager services that the airlines now offer. A stewardess is reciting her spiel to the passengers and says, “In case of cabin pressure, oxygen masks will drop down in front of you for two dollars.” I expect that may be a reality anytime soon. Another is of a passenger at the ticket counter. The clerk says to him, “I’m sorry, sir, but all of your frequent-flier miles have already been used up by your lost luggage.”

A wife spouts off to her husband, “While you’re renting the wallpaper stripper, the cutter and the floor sander, ask about renting someone who knows what he’s doing.” Aha.

A parent says to his child, “Go to bed and I’ll text you a story.”

One rings true at our house. The parent calls their grown kid for help. “Hello, Bob? It’s your father again. I have another question about my new computer. Can I tape a movie from the cable TV, then fax it from my VCR to my CD-ROM, then E-mail it to my brother’s cellular phone so he can make a copy on his neighbor’s camcorder?” We have actually had discussions that feel like this. Somehow, the kids always have to go and refer us to someone else, or even worse, the manual.

A guy is in a job interview and the interviewer says to him, “It says here you’re intelligent, honest and reliable. What makes you think you’d be an asset to this company?”

As I go through past Christmas letters, I realize how cartoons are really a sign of the times. What was funny 10 years ago, isn’t necessarily funny today. An example of one relevant today, but not necessarily funny years ago, is a woman who says of her husband, “Sean can say, ‘I’m unemployed in seven languages.’”
The other day a friend asked me if I wanted to take a concealed weapons class with her. I said, “Are you nuts? The last thing I need is a gun. I’m sure I’d shoot myself, or even worse, my dog or my husband.” One cartoon is a gun store salesman holding a rifle. He says to the customer, “OK, but let’s say you have up to 600 intruders per minute.” Yeah, for sure.

And what good joke collection would be good without something on aging? One I relate to, “I guess I never realized that growing old was such a big part of the aging process.” A guy shares, “I’m at that awkward age — I can’t decide whether to get a hearing aid or an earring.”

And I guess I’ll close with one which is way too close to home. A couple is standing in the kitchen. She’s cooking. They each have a glass of wine. The man says, “If they don’t show up, I’ll have to admit I forgot to invite them.” Sigh. I suppose the thing that makes us laugh at cartoons is that they mirror our lives. We might as well laugh. It’s too painful to cry.

Maureen Burns, a Greenville resident, is a professional speaker and author. Her e-mail address is

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