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Just for laughs

Laughing is curious. How/why, does something you hear, read, think about, or see, cause your body to conjure up a laugh? I certainly dont know, and thats fine, its not my job to know. My job is to make folks laugh, thats why, I think, Im often approached by random people who want to tell me a joke. Every now and then Im thrilled when someone comes out with a real good one. Most often the jokes folks tell fall a little flat. Im not complaining. As a public service, the following are tips you can work on that might make your joke telling more effective. Dont start your joke by saying, Heres one youll like. Dont approach the joke tellee all proud, as if youre about to recite the cure for cancer. Know the joke youre telling cold. To say, Oh wait, I forgot how it goes, is not acceptable. Remember, effective joke telling is serious business. Failing to prepare is preparing to fail, applies here. Do not get to up in the space of the person youre telling the joke to. Regardless of the space youve left between you and your audience, you should have good smelling breath. Do not telegraph the punch line. In other words, tell the story, and let the joke work on its own. You dont need to smile the whole time youre telling the joke, in fact, dont smile at all, unless a character in the joke is a smiler. If you must tell a dirty joke, be sure your audience is game. On a whole, I think dirty jokes are less funny, but its all subjective. Vary the tempo of the lines in the joke. Dont rush it, and dont end each line by saying, ya got it. So theres this dry fern talking to a cat ya got it? And the dry fern says, Hey kitty, can you get me some water, ya got it? Once youve reached the crucial moment just before the apex/punch line of the joke, burp, break wind, cough, wheeze, barf, cry, do all those things if you must, but please, please, dont laugh. It can work if you tailor the joke (change the words) to fit your telling abilities and overall sensibilities, but you should, as much as possible; tell the joke in the manner in which it was intended to be told. Most crucial is for you to remember, youre not funny, the joke is. See how many of the tips you can utilize while telling the following joke. A guy got a new hearing aid and was all happy and proud and bragging, and he told his friend, Hey, I got a new hearing aid. The guys friend said, What kind is it? The guy said, 10:15. Thats a perfect joke to tell to hone your skills because all you have to do is say the words. Thanks, and as my dad used to tell me as I walked down his path to my car, Make em laugh. Rusty DeWees tours Vermont and Northern New York with his act The Logger. His column appears weekly. He can be reached at rustyd@pshift.com. Listen for The Logger, Rusty DeWees, Thursdays at 7:40 on the Big Station, 98.9 WOKO or visit his website at www.thelogger.com

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