Observational Humor — Case Study #100

Here’s another Observational Humor monologue.  This is monologue #100.  I’ve probably opened speeches with Observational Humor or delivered Observational Humor monologues more than 1000 times.  There is no substitute for experience.  Speakers who practice the skill just keep getting better.  I’ve been practicing Observational Humor for over 30 years.  And I’m better today than I was last year.  It’s a learned skill.  You can learn it too.

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

1.  Jim and Melanie were recently married.  Melanie’s last name is Hope.  Someone referred to Jim Hope…but Jim and Melanie both kept their own last names.

2.  Steve talked about stamp collecting, a hobby that sticks with you…because of the glue. 

3.  Someone said Steve rode in on an imaginary horse which nobody saw.

4.  Daniel gave a very funny Observational Humor monologue.

5.  Someone referred to the phrase Jump For Joy.

6.  Bobby gave an evaluation which followed one I gave.  He opened his with:  “I’m going to use notes because John Kinde did.”

7.  Steve gave a talk on storytelling which was titled:  The History of History.

8.  Steve talked about how it’s OK to stretch the truth when telling a story or making a joke.

9.  A speaker said he really liked a couple of poems he shared…because he wrote them.

10.  A speaker told a story of a bride breaking her nose when she bumped into the groom’s forehead.

11.  A speaker presented a spoof limerick which intentionally didn’t rhyme.


Madam President, Fellow Toastmasters, and Mr Hope.
(A call back.  Good laugh.)

Steve rode in on a horse which then vanished.  Which explains where the glue came from.
(This joke was triggered by connecting two unrelated things that came up during the meeting.  Very big laugh.)

Since when did Daniel become so funny?
(Triggers.  The truth.  What everybody was thinking.  Implies growth and is a compliment.  Good laugh.)

(I did a little jump.)  That was a North Dakota Norwegian jumping for joy.
(Plays with my laid back personality.  Not everyone in North Dakota is just like me.  But members of my family are.  A little bit of self deprecation goes a long way.  Very good laugh.)

For the benefit of our guests, Power House Pros is a very formal club.  But this is casual Monday.
(Our membership  is dressed from suit and tie to TShirts and shorts.)

I’m using notes tonight…because Bobby did.
(I had not planned on using this line, but it came to me as I was presenting my monologue and I included it.  Very big laugh.)

Scott Pritchard will be speaking next week on The Humor of Humor.
(Call back of Steve’s program title, the History of History.  Good laugh.)

The three laws of humor.
1.  Accuracy is secondary to the laughs.
2.  When it comes to humor, do what you have to do.
3.  MY jokes are funny because I wrote them.
(Number three triggered a very big laugh.  Self aggrandizement at work.)

A club had a goal to be funny.
We did it just for the fun of it.
We’d go for the joke.
Which is secondary to everything.
And at the end of the meeting our nose feels like it’s broken on a groom’s forehead knocking him silly.
(The limerick got moderate laughs.  I expected more.)

The Poetry is secondary to the humor.
(The topper “poetry is secondary to the humor” received a very big laugh.  Sometimes the topper is just what is needed to release hidden tension. Possible tension could have resulted from not getting the original joke…the limerick.  Or not wanting to laugh because not a lot of others were laughing.  Or the joke may have been too long to justify a punch moment.)