Observational Humor — Case Study #88

Here’s another Observational Humor monologue presented at the end of a meeting.  I’ll provide the set-ups first, what inspired the jokes.  Then I’ll give you the joke and some brief comments on what made it work.

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

1.  A speaker suggested we tell other people, “I’m so proud of you.”

2.  Member Darren LaCroix was attending the meeting.  It isn’t often that he attends because of his busy speaking schedule.  He said:  “I know many of you are shocked to see me here tonight.”

3.  Our District 33 International Speech Contest winner was practicing her contest speech for the International Convention coming up in Orlando.

4.  Our theme was British slang.  One of the words highlighted was BLOODY  (used as an intensifier to express annoyance).

5.  Another word mentioned was CHUNTER (to mutter or grumble).

6.  Another word mentioned was BUNG (to toss or give something).

7.  A speaker referred to something that could make you popular, pretty or dead.

8.  We were serving cake after the meeting.

9.  The club was voting on a new meeting format to make us a Humor Specialty Club. 

10.  A speaker mentioned how they pronounce things differently in Boston.

11.  Emily and Ben, a married couple, are both members of the club.  Often, one of them is absent from a meeting while the other one attends.

12.  A speaker admitted to being nervous.  His evaluator said that if the audience didn’t know you were nervous, don’t mention it.

THE MONOLOGUE

(We opened the Observational Humor session with comments from our members. Peter volunteered to go first and presented an excellent observational monologue of about five jokes.  When he was done I said…)
Peter, I am so proud of you.
(Very big laugh.)

Fellow Toastmasters, World Champion of Public Speaking…my God he’s actually here!  Future World Champion of Public Speaking, and bloody guests.
(I inserted a good callback into a routine speech opening.  And closed with a slang term as the twist in a rule-of-three pattern.)

Welcome to Observational chunter.
(Good call back of slang term.)

Tonight I have some observations I’d like to bung.
(Another slang term.  Being a funny sounding word was a plus.)

I have good news.  Humor can make you popular…pretty…or dead.   But not at the same time.  Let’s face it, when you’re dead, you’re no longer pretty.
(A call back which I presented as a benefit of humor.  Then added two toppers.)

In honor of tonight’s vote, the cake will taste funny.
(Using the double meaning of funny.)

I can understand that people in Boston pronounce things differently.  I lived four years in Montgomery, Alabama.  They use slang differently than we do.  When they break their arm they put it in a slang.
(A silly sound-alike that I thought might work.  It got a good laugh.)

I know you’ve noticed that Emily and Ben attend alternate meetings…because they are the same person.  But I also want you to note that, on the rare occasion when they both attend the same meeting, you never see Ben talking while Emily is drinking water.
(This is a running gag that I’ve used before, “the same person.”  Then I implied that Emily was a ventriloquist.  The joke was new to this group, although it was a joke which I recycled from another presentation.)

The Take-Home-Tip of the meeting.  If you’re running a Ponzi Scheme and you’re the only person who knows.  Don’t say anything.
(I liked the idea of linking “don’t say anything” with a Ponzi Scheme.  It received a very big laugh.  A good closer.)