Saturday, September 25, 2010

The economy is so bad that...

"The economy is so bad that some funeral homes are having GOING OUT OF BUSINESS SALES!" For some reason I blurted this out as we drove by a funeral home this morning and my husband was kind enough to laugh at my quirky humor. Seriously, I think this is one business that has not felt a reduction in volume from the sluggish economy. But--what if they felt a need to pump up their business? I started thinking about all of the possible sales techniques that could be used for advertisements. "We offer a lay away plan!" "Buy now, Pay later." "The price will never be this low again" "Money back guarantee!"

Funeral home personal really do have a sense of humor. There is a sign in front of a funeral home that says; "Slow down--we'll wait!" Another posted a sign that said, "We would rather do business with 1000 Al Qaeda terrorists than with a single American."

How do they help folks decide what to put on the gravestones? Did you ever think about what you want on your tombstone? Is there anyone who would like to use a little humor? Here are some classic humorous headstones:

"Having a great time-wish you were here."

"I told you I was sick"

"I knew this was going to happen to me"

"Beneath this stone my wife doth lie
Now she's at rest and so am I"

"It was a cough that carried him off
It was a coffin they carried him off in"

"I made a lot of deals in my lifetime
but I sure went into the hole on this one"

This is all grave humor! I inherited this propensity for finding the funny in death and dying. Whenever we drive by a cemetery, I am reminded of my father who always--and I mean ALWAYS--said, " I hear people are dying to get there" This was always followed by, "That's the last place I want to go." Of course I am carrying on this tradition to the chagrin of my family. I suspect that they will eventually teach this to their kids. Good traditions never die.......ops--did I really say that they NEVER die?

Saturday, September 18, 2010


"90% of the game is half mental". My laughter turned to wondering about the author, Yogi Berra. I admit that the most I knew was that he was a famous baseball player. A google search revealed a talented athlete and a guy who could be really funny. . Berra, who quit school after the eighth grade, has a tendency toward malapropism and fracturing the English language. Although my work involves giving workshops on humor and stress, I have to admit that I had to look up malapropism. I found out that it is the substitution of a word for a word with a similar sound, in which the resulting phrase makes no sense, but often creates a comic effect. Hey, I think I do that a lot too.

Wikipedia has more great information on Yogi Berra including details on his baseball career and the fact that Yogi Bear was supposedly named after him.

But his Yogiisms are what I really wanted to share in the hope that you laugh as much as I did!

"When you come to a fork in the road-take it."

"I really didn't say anything I said."

"A nickel isn't worth a dime today."

"I made a wrong mistake."

"The other teams could make trouble for us if they win."

"The towels were so thick there I could hardly close my suitcase."

On why he no longer went to Ruggeri's, a St. Louis restaurant: "Nobody goes there anymore. It's too crowded."

One of the most famous, "It ain't over till it's over."

"If the fans don't come out to the ball park, you can't stop them."

Once, Yogi's wife Carmen asked, "Yogi, you are from St. Louis, we live in New Jersey, and you played ball in New York. If you go before I do, where would you like me to have you buried?" Yogi replied, "Surprise me."

But this has to be my favorite quote: "Be sure to go to other people's funerals or else they won't come to yours!'

So-- I will go to your funeral if you come to mine!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Humor Benefits both Mind and Body

One of the benefits of humor is that it contributes to Mind/Body Balance.

“Worrying is like a rocking chair: it gives you something to do, but it doesn't get you anywhere.” Unknown

A sense of humor can create a remarkable feeling of control over one’s life. Learning to use humor as a lens for life challenges can increase confidence in one’s own internal ability to adapt. The optimistic energy that comes from humor enables individuals to embrace difficulties with resilience. Some individuals purposefully use laughter to ease pain and promote physical healing. There is some experimental research indicating that laughter/humor might actually cure illness and may provide effective therapies for numerous disorders. Some claim that laughter relieves pain, reduces stress, and improves the immune system response. (Harvey, 1998) Although these studies are preliminary, and no firm conclusions can be made as yet, many of the findings are encouraging as to the benefits and applications of positive humor.
Got stress? The purposeful use of humor can help you feel more optimistic about your life, knowing that you can choose how to respond to stress. Humor elevates mood and has been known to be a deterrent to depression. Stress reduction is considered to be one of the most important benefits of humor. A little humor will go a long way in helping educators balance the current focus on accountability, testing, standards and unfunded mandates.

This is an exerpt from my book, "Using Humor to Maximize Learning"

Humor Is Contagious-You Might Catch It!

It can spread rapidly! There is no known cure. You can catch it from your parents and other important people in your life. You can also spread it to everyone you meet. Humor is a tonic that is available free of charge and the side effects are laughter and fun. The JoyFlow experience of humergy is observed when enthusiasm, excitement, and energy are bubbling from individuals who are passionate about their work. This synergy is experienced in an environment that is humming with the spirit of joyful learning. Humergy is reflected by the excitement of those individuals who exude a zest for life and a quest for knowledge.

There are numerous benefits derived from humor. Humor is an oft overlooked skill that has many benefits. These include providing stress relief, maximizing brain capacity for learning, increasing creativity, improving communication skills and creating an environment of trust. Humor is inseparable from our whole being. It is intrinsically woven into our emotional and social psyche reflecting our ethics and belief systems.

The numerous definitions of humor include that which makes one laugh or what is amusing. However, a sense of humor is the capacity of a human being to respond to life challenges with optimistic amusement. There is a synergy that is evident in people who have such an optimistic sense of humor.

Humergy is the energy that radiates the joyful optimism of our inner spirit, reflects our unique personality, and nourishes a healthy mind/body balance. (Morrison 2004)

Note---Several above passages are excerpts from my book:
Using Humor to Maximize Learning