Observational Humor — Case Study #22

Here’s another Observational Humor monologue presented at a Toastmasters meeting.

THE SET-UP (what was said and what happened during the meeting before the monologue was presented)

1.  The impromptu segment of the meeting (called Table Topics) featured food products, mostly canned and boxed items from Trader Joes.  The person delivering the off-the-cuff talk was asked to create a commercial for the item.

2.  A speaker talked about profiling customers.  A mention was made about “adult children of alcoholics.”

3.  A speaker talked about the many hats we wear as small business persons; sales, accounting, supply, janitorial, etc.

4.  A speaker mentioned his web site.  “When you type it in, no hyphens, slashes or underscoring.”

5.  Someone joked that we were fishing for new club members using fish hooks.

6.  Our club is about an hour’s drive from Pahrump, one of the cities in Nevada where brothels are legal.

7.  A speaker confessed she had a stack of unread books which was so high that she couldn’t jump over them.  She suggested that a way to catch up on your reading was to get up one hour earlier each morning.

8.  A speaker mentioned Mr Drysdale, the banker on The Beverly Hillbillies TV show from the 1960s.

9.  The week before the meeting I competed in a Tall Tales competition where I gave a speech claiming I was a space alien.


Today’s Observational Humor session is brought to you by Trader Joe’s.
(It was obvious that they were really NOT the sponsor.  A funny callback.)

We’ve completed a profile of the type of people who do Observational Humor.  They have offspring who are the adult children of alcoholics.
(The logic structure of the punchline concerned me.  I wasn’t sure people would get the joke.  But it worked immediately.  Right after delivering it, I did a take, a facial expression indicating that I wasn’t really sure what I just said.  It was a subtle self-deprecation joke.)

I am an Observational Humorist, a speaker and a janitor.  My web site is www.HumorPower.com.  That’s with a hyphen, a slash, and an underline.
(The web site line works because it contrasts the simplicity of the web site name, Humor Power, with the made-up complexity of the punctuation.)

It was suggested that we use a fish hook to get new members.  There is a club in Pahrump that does that.  Not only that, they use a large hook when someone speaks overtime.  They’re called The Hookers Toastmasters Club.
(Since I was speaking to locals, they were familiar with the Brothels of Pahrump.  The line worked well.)

I have to admit, I also have a stack of unread books which is so high I can’t jump over them.  As I see it, I have two options.  Either I get up an hour earlier each morning.  OR I learn to jump higher.  I think I’ll choose to sleep in.
(The line received a big laugh.  The topper got another laugh.)

Someone mentioned Mr Drysdale on the Beverly Hillbillies.  Does anyone remember the name of his secretary?  Yes, Jane Hathaway.  I think we’re getting old.  Does anyone remember Klaatu Barada Nikto?  Yes, it’s from The Day The Earth Stood Still, a black and white movie from 1952.  When I saw that movie as a kid, I became fascinated with space aliens.  And now I am one.
(This joke involved a long set up, but involved the audience and flattered those with a good memory.  The final punch line made the connection with my Tall Tales speech.)