You: Are are ever going to write another Friday Good News?
Me: I’m not sure.
You: Why? What’s wrong?
Me: I lost my sense of humor.
You: I have read your stuff. That’s not a great loss. If you just continue writing, I’m not sure your readers will know the difference. Oh, don’t look so glum. Just think back to where you might have left it.
Me: I think I left it in bar when I was sitting at a round table with two night nurses and a man named Arthur.
You: Even if you found it, we wouldn’t expect much with a lame beginning like that. Remember, this is the internet age. You don’t have to be funny on your own, or wise or insightful or nostalgic for that matter. Just look up a couple of hilarious jokes and call it a blog.
Me: OK, it’s worth a try.
Me: Sorry it took so long. I found a web site that has the best jokes from different people who make their living doing standup comedy. Wendy Leibman said, “My husband wanted one of those big-screen TVs for his birthday. I just moved his chair closer to the one we already have.”
You: That’s not funny. My husband and I could have saved hundreds of dollars if I had thought of that.
Me: Sean Keane said, “My girlfriend said, ‘I hate it when you finish my sentences.’ So I said, ‘Period.'”
You: That’s not funny either. Is this Sean Keane a famous comedian?
Me: I’ve never heard of him.
You: Well, he’s not going to make it. Find a joke from someone who’s famous for being funny.
Me: Roseanne Barr says, “A doctor tells a guy: ‘I have bad news. You have Alzheimer’s, and you have cancer.’ Guy says, ‘Thank God I don’t have cancer.’
You: That’s not only not funny, that’s terrible. Now three groups of people will be mad at you.
You: People who have relatives or friends with memory issues, people who have or have had or have relatives and friends who have or have had cancer, and people with a sense of humor.
Me: Now we can add a fourth — people with good grammar. So why don’t you tell me something really funny.
You: These days I get all my humor from my first-grader. Yesterday she said, “What do you call a pig that knows karate? A pork chop!”
Me: That’s funny, but I just can’t laugh.
You: She brings them home from school. “Why do cows wear bells? Because their horns don’t work.”
Me: That’s indeed humorous. I don’t know why it makes me feel sad.
You: “What does a snail say when it is riding on a turtle’s back? Weeeeeeeee!”
Me: Would your daughter like to write the Friday Good News?
You: Not this weekend. She’s doing her science project on what you get when you cross a Congressman with a snake. But back to your problem. You were just down in Denver with your children and grandchildren. How can you be so glum? Didn’t you have a great time?
Me: We had a wonderful time, but while we were there, our 13-year-old golden retriever named Tucker was taken from the kennel to the Animal Hospital, where he died in his sleep.
You: I’m sorry. It’s never easy to lose a family member.
Me: I just lost it. Pat and I cried, and we still do on occasion. Our other dog, Trinity, has been moping around, checking all the rooms for Tucker.
You: Dogs are so loving and smart. They learn so quickly.
Me: Tucker was as lovable a big guy as there ever was, but he wasn’t so hot on the learning. We took him to obedience school, but neither he nor we did very well.
You: So he didn’t win any prizes at the dog training sessions?
Me: At the “graduation” ceremonies, the trainer did give awards in various categories, but Tucker wasn’t in the running for any of them. When the trainer was ready to announce the prize for the champion learning dog out of the ten or so that had been in the class, she said, “And the winner is…” (and she paused for dramatic effect.) At that exact moment, Tucker belched a truly world-class belch. The whole place exploded in laughter. The little boy next to us literally slid off his chair and onto the floor, he was giggling so hard.
You: Well at least your dog had a sense a timing, even if you don’t.
Me: I have no words to describe our sense of loss for our beloved Tucker. I’ll borrow a phrase from our friend, Steve Garnaas-Holmes, who gave a perfect eulogy when his aged dog passed on.
“After 13 years, Tucker finally learned to stay. Good boy.”