Monday, May 3, 2010

There Are Only Seven Jokes - Category 5

      In some languages the subject of a sentence is indicated by its ending. If words are written out of their normal sequence, the reader can still make sense of the sentence. For example, in such a language, if I write “man bites dog” when I really mean to write “dog bites man,” the reader still understands what I mean to say because the ending of “dog” indicates that it is the subject, not the object, of the sentence.
      Not so in English. Obviously, the wrong word order can completely change the meaning of a sentence.
      This characteristic of the language is a source of jokes for Category 5: Distortion of language. Here is an example. Warning – This story is rated TVMA14–L.
Upon seeing a beautiful, statuesque nurse, a patient remarked about her to the doctor:

Patient: “You certainly have a beautiful nurse.”

Doctor: “Yes, she is very beautiful, but she always gets things backwards. If I tell her to give a patient four pills every two hours, she gives him two pills every four hours. If I tell her to give him three teaspoons of medicine every six hours, she gives him six teaspoons every three hours. She causes a lot of trouble.”

Just then the door burst open, and a man came running through the room holding up his pants; the nurse came running after holding a pot of boiling water.

Doctor: “See. There’s an example. I just told her to go prick his boil!”
      Another characteristic of the English language is its habit of absorbing words taken from other languages. This leads to a proliferation of homonyms; words that sound alike but have different spellings or meanings. It’s not a problem with written speech, but can lead to many humorous situations when spoken. For example:
A blonde goes to the post office to buy stamps for her Christmas cards.

Blonde: "May I have 50 Christmas stamps?"

Clerk: "What denomination?"

Blonde: "God help us. Has it come to this? Give me 6 Catholic, 12 Presbyterian, 10 Lutheran and 22 Baptists."
      As always, I ask my readers to click on the “Comments” button below, and add any thoughts, additions or jokes they may have to the list. The category for tomorrow is distortion of idea.
      The one thing that all of our examples have in common is that individual entities were somehow transcended and transformed to create new and often different entities. Persons with a religious outlook will attribute the underlying process to God, Jehovah, Allah, etc. while those with a scientific outlook will attribute it to entropy or perhaps "tiny strings vibrating through ten or eleven dimensions." Throughout this book I will attribute this activity to the action of the Spirit. Although the term has a religious connotation, I cannot think of a more descriptive name. I hope those with a scientific bent will bear with me.
     Introduction - The Spirit Runs Through It.

The book and/or a free look inside is available in paperback or on Kindle at Amazon.

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