laughter

Dullest blog ever – Dave Walker

This is a wonderfully funny parody of a totally inconsequential blog.  Made by a hilarious cartoonist, Dave Walker.

Posts includes such gems as:

Going for a walk

April 15th, 2013

I decided to go for a walk. I set off in my chosen direction. Eventually I returned to my starting point.

 

Straightening the doormat

February 7th, 2010

I noticed that the doormat was at a slightly crooked angle.  I reached down and moved the mat back into its correct place. The edge of the mat was then perpendicular to the door.

 

Sadly, the blog ran out of “uninteresting” things to say back in 2013.

Happily, it remains online, to make the rest of us look good!

http://www.dullestblog.com/

Naturally, it contains no pictures – too overexciting.  However, Dave Walker is now concentrating his blog writing time on his cartoon website – worth a look

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How to get a glowing book review BEFORE writing the book….

Yes, you can achieve a strongly positive book review before you have written a word of it…  IF you reply to an unimaginative scammer who has used the old ruse of pretending to be a friend who has lost his money overseas.

 James Veitch shows us how, in a video of under 3 minutes.

If you’d like to see more scammers getting their come-uppance, you’ll find “Scamalot” has (more…)

Calming words

Writer Anne Lamott before her 61st birthday sat down and wrote all the truths she absolutely knew.  They include the importance of radical self-care

“Being full of affection for one’s goofy, self-centred, cranky, annoying self is home; it’s where world peace begins.”

“Every writer you know writes really terrible first drafts – but they keep their butt in the chair… they do it by prearrangement with themselves, they do it as a debt of honour.”

“if people want you to write more warmly about them – they should have behaved better” (round of applause from the audience)

“Grace is spiritual WD40 or waterwings”

These are words specifically written for people feeling overwhelmed by complicated politics in their country, by rapidly changing world events.  Above all, they are humane and hopeful, positive and spiritual.

Light relief

Into the veil of tears which is BBC documentary TV, a sparkle of light, laughter, self-sacrifice, helping the poor, genuine cameraderie, joy, benefit to community and unfashionably long robes broke through, last night.  As you may guess from the clues, this involved followers of St Francis.

Last night’s programme “Bronx to Bradford” following the lives of 5 friars in Bradford, was beautifully filmed, well edited, and tells a terrific story not only of the friars butScreen shot 2017-04-14 at 13.07.20.png indomitable older ladies, the life of an ageing community, a warm view of multifaith community in Britain and homeless people given an opportunity to tell their own story – sadly all this treasure was shoved into a late late late time on a Thursday night (10.45 pm), so many
people will have been denied the chance to see it – but worth catching on BBC i-Player  (available for next month) at:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b08mk2tv

We see the friars happily serving food to the vulnerable (aided by wonderful volunteers), rising pre-dawn to begin the day with prayer, telling their messy life stories, relaxing with some excellent jamming guitars  (one jokes: “Shall I sing No Woman, no cry?” – they both laugh).  As part of their vow of poverty, they sort through tScreen shot 2017-04-14 at 13.23.15.pngheir whole house for things which are superfluous – (St Francis predated minimalism and the Kon Mari method by 800 years) – anything ‘extra’ is set out for the poor to take away – and through it all the thread of that most unfashionable, un21st century emotion: joy.  You could have almost equally billed this programme as social reality or comedy, there is so much down-to-earthness and laughter throughout.

This delight and holy glee is part of their time of prayer in the derelict Chapel they are reconstructing and breathing new life into – two of the brothers who previously had a raucous guitar jam session, put their skills to the praise of the Lord and sing/pray into the space: “Let this be a place of light, of welcome…”

Screen shot 2017-04-14 at 12.40.26.png

“My spirit rejoices in Christ my Saviour”

“Lord let the poor find a place of the richness of your love here, Lord.”

 

This is, in the end, a most inviting documentary.  Thoroughly worth watching, in my opinion.

 

 

 

 

Humour me

I was thinking today about a very good friend who is simply in a difficult set of circumstances.  She is immensely capable, resourceful, witty, hardworking and completely unself-pitying.  But is in a long-running set of adverse circumstances which would put the frighteners on any optimist.  In all this greyness, where is the colour?  And a phrase came to me:

“Follow the thread of laughter”

IMG_5251.JPGLike the legend of Theseus finding his way out of the maze after fighting the monster – by following a ball of thread given to him by Ariadne, who loved him – I think that genuine humour, in the greyness of difficulty, stress and bone-weariness is a relief of light.

To be able to laugh, even briefly, is such a gift.  In the middle of a sad story or pressured time, to find the wry comment, the one-liner, the ruefully hilarious simile, the self-deprecating remark – brings a genuine laugh, a release of tension.

This is something I can do for my friend.  Send a card that appeals to a shared sense of humour, tweet a comment, write a letter, fire off a facetious text.  Throw out the ball of thread that promises lightness at the end of the tunnel, another emergence into the light.   And to help ourselves, sometimes seek out a humorous book or TV series.  For myself, when social media becomes saccharine, sentimental and unbearably “cute” I treat myself to a slightly astringent dose of humour such as an episode of TV humour: “Black Books” or “Blackadder”.  Or when recovering from flu, in that one day of blahness, when the body and mind feel like porridge, a good dose of radio comedy or smart witty panel games just brings back that zzhuzh and sparkle of life.  The promising sound of laughter.

Zsa Zsa Gabor vs Groucho Marx vs Mae West

Today’s “last Word” Radio 4 programme paid short tributes to recently passed away well known people (which it does, brilliantly, every week).  I really tuned in to hear about Rabbi Lionel Blue – but in the same programme Zsa Zsa Gabor was celebrated.

Someone pieced together her best one-liners in this video clip.  Makes me think it would have been interesting to hear a radio programme based on competitive quipping – between her, Groucho Marx and Mae West.  So let’s make one up.

First, Zsa Zsa:

 

Groucho?  (In just 2 minutes)

Nice comeback – I especially like the quote about politics.  But you lose points for having most of your lines written for you.

Mae West in 2 minutes?  I reckon she’d win – she wrote all her own lines.  Most of these lines you can see the joke before it’s said – but that’s because they have become iconic.