I Don’t Know What to Call This Post

I keep looking at the calendar and being surprised that Christmas is so close. Like many people, I’m just not feeling very Christmas-y this year.

Part of it is the weather. I’m used to having cold and snow by this time of year, and it’s been sunny and warm lately- warm enough for me to ride the horse without bundling up too much; that’s where I’m headed after I finish writing this. And the grass is still green, even though the leaves are off the trees. Typical for this part of the country, but it’s not what I’m used to (this time last year, I was buying a bathing suit on Galveston Island, and laughing about it; I have very specific ideas of what the weather should look like at certain times of the year, and this is not it).

The other reason I’m feeling blah is that this will be the first Christmas away from my childhood home. Even after I moved away a couple years ago, I still went back for Christmas, because it was a good time to see everybody. So, even though we’re having a little celebration on the day, it doesn’t feel right. All the usual traditions have been upended, in a year when everything is already upside down. The house- and more importantly, the budget- are too small to permit much decorating, though I have acquired a tabletop tree and a handful of ornaments. Maybe I’ll put that up this weekend.

And of course, the wider world is so unsettled that it’s hard to be very merry. I can’t see what the future looks like, and that annoys me. Sure, nobody really knows what’s in the future, but up until recently, I could make some reasonable predictions. Now? I don’t know what next week looks like, let alone the next month or year. It’s unfortunate that we’ve gotten to the point that politics has such a drastic effect on even little, seemingly unrelated things.

So the upshot of all that is, I’ve been rather grouchy lately. I need to do something about that. Ride the horse, finishing raking the leaves, do a little Christmas shopping- those all sound like good distractions.

Let’s have another funny thread. Tell me about something silly that happened to you recently. Or your best joke, or pun (I live with an incurable punster), or something, anything, to cheer up all the people who, like me, are tired and grumpy during what should be a happy season.

24 comments

  1. Haven’t you heard? Our Fearless Leaders have canceled Christmas. They’re afraid if we get out of our cage, they’ll never stuff us back in.

  2. Our kindergartener has discovered puns.

    Sort of.

    She’s not clear on the whole…word play… thing.

    “What does Santa use on his patio? A ho ho ho!”
    “What does Santa wear to the beach? A ho ho ho!”
    Followed by identical, maniacal laughter.

    1. When my eldest was in preschool, the fashionable thing was weird knock knock jokes.
      “Knock knock”
      “Who’s there?”
      “Tree… cow… car!”
      Followed by similar laughter

  3. Here in Connecticut the lawns are greener than they were in summer, because of rain, and my garden is still green in large stretches. I’m even getting bellflower, million bell, and pansy blossoms. (Had a pink a while back. It was pink.)

    1. Are you down by the shore? My dad’s up by the Mass line, and they got six inches of snow over the weekend.

      1. Half way between them. We got snow, and some of it’s still hanging out. Only the tougher plants survive, of course. Purslane’s dead, moss roses, cone flowers. . . .

      2. Half way between them. We got snow, and some of it’s still hanging out. Only the tougher plants survive, of course. Purslane’s dead, moss roses, cone flowers. . . .

  4. My best pun? Tough choice…

    Possibly my best impromptu pun happened a few years ago. I was sitting around chatting with a very good friend who is himself a champion punster, besides being quite well traveled in his youth. Somehow or other the topic turned to British kids and how they “break in” their cricket bats. Apparently there’s a specific tradition for how to do this, and he was wondering why they couldn’t do it some other more sensible way.

    My response: “I suppose they could do it that way … but y’know, it just wouldn’t be cricket.”

    I am proud to say that he (who, remember, is a much more skilled punster than I; he can say things that are simultaneously puns in two different languages) never saw that coming.

  5. Oh, it’s puns you want? Well, then…

    Smith crawled despairingly through the Great Victoria Desert. He knew he was near to death. The mirages and hallucinations had multiplied as his dehydration worsened. But wait…what’s this? Nuns singing? An auditory mirage? That’s new. He bestirred himself sufficiently to raise his head and look out across the desert floor.

    A caravan of nuns appeared to be approaching from the west, seemingly singing a chorale of some sort. The longer Smith watched, the closer they seemed to come, until they halted their little wagon train and their song right before him. Could this be help at last?

    Smith struggled painfully to his feet. Yes, the nuns were really there. Full traditional habits with headpieces, rosaries and crucifixes dangling from their belts, the whole deal. So he said what any traveler dying of thirst in the Australian desert would say to a suddenly appearing caravan of nuns:

    “Who are you?”

    The lead nun, a fetching young thing even in her all-concealing habit, smiled beatifically and replied “We are the Sisters of Mercy.”

    That was as plain an answer as Smith had expected to receive, so he proceeded to his second dying-of-thirst-in-the-Australian-desert inquiry:

    “May I have something to drink?”

    With that, the nun brought him a large cup of tea. Thinking nothing of the absurdity of a nun bringing him a steaming cup of tea in hundred-degree desert heat, he immediately took a big sip…and gagged, coughed, and spluttered. It was horrible. Oily, rancid, bitter. And hot, of course. But it was wet. He did his best to smile and asked the beaming nun, “What is this?”

    “It’s our specialty,” she said. “It’s a tea made from the skins of koala bears.”

    Well, Smith had no reply to that, so he returned his attention to the tea. For the first time he actually looked at the contents of the cup…and gagged again. Clumps of hair and large chunks of fat floated visibly on the surface of the brew. He shuddered afresh and raised his eyes back to the young nun.

    “Ah, I don’t mean to sound ungrateful,” he said, “but don’t you think it would be better to strain this before serving it?”

    The nun’s gaze went from beatific to horrified in an instant.

    “Oh no!” she said. “The koala tea of Mercy is not strained!

    (/rimshot)

    1. Grooooaaaannnnn. I’ve heard a different version of that one, still terrible.

      Of course, you heard about the three brothers who started a ranch and called it the Focus Ranch. Why Focus Ranch? Because . . .

      It’s where the sons raise meat.

      1. Yup. Attributed originally to Isaac Asimov, if memory serves.
        I’ve never understood the disdain showered upon puns as a form of humorous wordplay. You have to be fairly clever to put a good pun together. (“There are no good puns!” rises the cry from the peanut gallery.) It’s also fairly hard to be original in one’s punmanship. But opportunities abound, especially in English.

        A couple of years ago, when I still owned Joy, my Corvette convertible, I had stored her in our barn for the winter months and had forgotten to turn out the light when I left. That gave rise to the following exchange one December morning between me and my wife (a.k.a. “the Curmudgeon’s Significant Other”):

        CSO: Looks like Joy stayed up all night reading again, eh?
        FWP: She must have downloaded a new book from Amazon.

        CSO: Probably her manual.
        FWP: Well, it is the right time of year for that.

        CSO: Hm?
        FWP: ♪ “O come, O come Ye Manual…” ♪
        CSO: (unprintable)

        And how are you enjoying Advent in this year of Our Lord 2020? (:-)

          1. The Orthodox call it Little Lent. And there’s the big one coming up. . . little though it feels it.

        1. I don’t get the dislike of puns and/or wordplay, either.

          They’re fun— and you can even make them visually.

          Like having a sleeping potion in a soda bottle with only one cat on it.
          Cat-a-tonic.

      2. The problem with puns like that is the amount of time that the reader feels stupid for not getting it. Yes, I got there eventually. Yes, it’s probably unfair to imagine that kitty in your icon smirking at me while I tried to work thought it. Yes, that’s what I was thinking anyway.

  6. > I’m used to having cold and snow by this time of year, and it’s been sunny and warm latel

    “Eeeyaaahhh!! Anthropogenic Globular Wormening! Reeee!”

  7. Is it okay to give 5 puns at a time?
    1. Four-tonne cheese heist leaves French police stumped. All that was left in the dairy was de brie
    2. I thought I saw an eye doctor on an Alaskan island, but it turned out to be an optical Aleutian!
    3. Boss says: You’re the worst conductor in the railroad business. How many trains did you derail last year?
    Conductor says: Not sure…it’s so hard to keep track!
    4. A four-foot-tall fortuneteller escaped from prison. He was a small medium at large.
    5. No matter how much you push the envelope, it’ll still be stationery.

    1. If he was a successful fortuneteller, how did they ever put him in jail in the first place?

  8. What is the name of the ninth reindeer? Olive.
    Dasher and Dancer, Donnor and Blitzen, Comet and Cupid, Prancer and Vixen, and Olive – the other reindeer.

  9. Once some friends and I were bantering, and somehow (don’t ask me how) the subject turned to ski resorts. One of them told a story about a town that turned its old landfill into a skiing hill. I promptly asked if that was where the filthy rich went to ski.

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