Observational Humor — Case Study #57

Here’s another Observational Humor monologue presented at the end of a Toastmasters Club meeting.  It’s presented as a learning tool to help you find your own, original humor. 

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

1.  One of our speakers, George Irish, used a note card about the size of a Post-It note.

2.  George gave an excellent speech with good audience reaction.  In fact they laughed in a couple of places where he didn’t expect laughs.

3.  George listed some languages he had experience with, including “Hillbilly.”

4.  George said he was a 40-year on-and-off Toastmaster.

5.  George described himself as a compulsive poker player.

6.  Another speaker talked about a part-time job as a costumed mascot for a Smoothie company.

7.  At the start of every meeting we are reminded to turn off all cell phones and electronic devices.

8.  Frank commented on the hot weather (110 degrees Fahrenheit/43 degrees Celsius), and said that when he stepped into the elevator to come up to the meeting, a woman said to him in a sexy voice, “You’re so hot!”

9.  Donna talked about being a non-swimmer and going to a friend’s pool wearing goggles, a snorkel, a floatie, fins and a body board. 

10.  A speaker talked about an un-characteristic situation where she lost her cool and cussed someone out.  Her first language is German.


I have eight observations to share with you tonight.  (I pulled out a one-square-inch note card.)
(This was a visual sight-gag.  I thought it stood out when George used a noticeably small note card, and nobody had commented on it.  So I chose to use an even smaller note card, without making any specific comment about it.)

George Irish gave a great speech.  Based on the audience response, I’d say that everyone here is fluent in Hillbilly.
(Fluent in Hillbilly was an OK line and received an OK laugh.  I primarily used it as something to read off the small note card and as a set-up/transition to the self-introduction which followed.)

Allow me to introduce myself.  I’m John Norwegian.  I’m a country boy from North Dakota, a long-time Toastmaster, and a repulsive poker player.  And I was formerly a smoothie mascot.
(A brief self-introduction based on several call backs.  Switched the sound-alike word REPULSIVE to add a touch of self-deprecation.)

I’m glad the Sergeant at Arms reminded us to turn off all electrical devices.  I almost forgot to turn off my electronic whoopee cushion.
(The humor trigger is Absurdity.)

I saw Frank’s car in the parking lot.  His personalized license plate says Chile Pepper…because he’s so hot.
(Linked his claim to be hot with a ficticious license plate.)

I noticed in Donna’s speech that when she went swimming at her friend’s pool, she wore goggles, a snorkel, a floatie, fins and a body board.  I also noticed that she did not wear a swim suit (huge laugh). Donna, I’d like to invite you to come swim in my pool (huge laugh).
(The first sentence is a set-up.  The second sentence is a punchline.  The humor trigger was “what wasn’t said.”   The third sentence is a topper.  These were the two biggest laughs of the night in a meeting filled with laughter.)

Going home tonight I’m going to be more careful than when I came here.  On my way to the meeting, I accidentally cut someone off on the freeway…and a nice lady cussed me out in German.  (Of course this didn’t really happen.  I dropped myself into someone else’s story.  The set-up builds the tension.  The “going home tonight” made it a good closer.)