Tag Archives: Humor

Amusing Monday: Alligators are uniquely odd and amazing

I don’t believe I’ve ever written about alligators, probably because they don’t live in the Northwest, and it’s not easy to find their amusing side. But American alligators are interesting, once you get to know them.

I’ve never noticed that alligators have two kinds of walks while traveling on land. Their ankles flex in a different way than most reptiles. There is a “high walk,” in which the alligator pushes itself up from the ground and moves quickly. This walk resembles that of four-legged mammals.

They also do the “low walk,” a sprawling locomotion in which their belly slides along the ground, though somewhat different from a salamander or lizard. Although they normally move slowly, some alligators can reach nearly 10 miles per hour in the high walk during short bursts.

Alligator on bicycle by American Apparel. Click for website.
Alligator on bicycle by American Apparel. Click for website.

Alligators are common in cartoons, both still and animated. Here I feature a music video with the theme song of a musical group based in Finland, Arnie Alligator and the Jungle Drum. Among the many alligator characters invented through the years is Wally Gator, a character by Hanna-Barbera that I remember from my childhood. All the Wally Gator cartoons can be seen on Kiss Cartoon.

Collectible Florida Gator mug.
Collectible Florida Gator mug.

In addition to cartoons, we find lots of alligators on T-shirts, coffee mugs and other items, especially among students at the University of Florida, where the mascot is the Gator.

A few alligator jokes:

Q: Why don’t alligators like fast food?
A: Because they can’t catch it!

Q: What do you get if you cross an alligator with a flower?
A: I don’t know, but I’m not going to smell it!

Q: What do you call an alligator in a vest?
A: An Investigator

Q: What do you call an alligator that sneaks up and bites you from behind?
A: A tail-gator.

Q: Why shouldn’t you taunt an alligator?
A: Because it might come back to bite you in the end.

Customer: “Do you have alligator shoes?”
Clerk: “Yes, sir. What size does your alligator wear?”

A man walked into a Florida bar with his alligator and asked the bartender: “Do you serve lawyers here?”
Bartender: “Sure.”
Man: “Good. One beer for me and a lawyer for my alligator.”

Q: Is it true an alligator won’t attack you if you are carrying a flashlight?
A: It depends on how fast you are carrying it.

Q: How do you tell the difference between a crocodile and an alligator?
A: You will see one later and one in a while.

Most of these jokes are from the website Jokes 4 Us, which probably picked them up from somewhere else.

More facts about alligators from Wired magazine:

  • Alligators continue to grow throughout their lifetime. Male American alligators average 8 to 10 feet long, females slightly smaller. Very old males can get up to 15 feet long.
  • Alligators are apex predators, eating fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds, and mammals. But they have also been found to have a vegetarian side. The can eat fruit directly from trees, including wild grapes, elderberries and citrus fruits.
  • The temperature at which an alligator’s eggs develop will determine whether the offspring are male or female. Temperatures above 93 degrees will result in males. Temperatures below 86 degrees will result in females. Temperatures in-between produce both sexes.
  • Alligators make a variety of sounds, although they have no vocal cords. By blowing out air, they produce calls for claiming territory, signaling distress, threatening competitors and finding mates. Besides such bellowing, they can growl, hiss and make a cough-like sound called a chumpf.

Amusing Monday: Jokes to tease people with special knowledge

They call them “intellectual” jokes, because you must have special knowledge about science, literature, language, art, religion, philosophy or some other field for the jokes to make any sense.

You can find these jokes scattered across the Internet. At first, they may leave you annoyed, especially when you can’t figure them out and the author has not bothered to explain them.

On the other hand, they can be an opportunity to learn something new. Wikipedia can be a great place to jump into any of these inside jokes and add to your overall knowledge. And if you understand these jokes without any help, you may feel just a little smarter than the average joe.

I’ll share 10 of my favorite intellectual jokes with you. Please let me know what you think — either in the comment section below or to my email. Your comments will help me decide whether I should ever offer this brand of humor again.


I’ve put what I hope are reasonable explanations for each joke at the bottom of this post, in case you can’t figure them out.

1. Two men walk into a bar. The first orders H2O. The second says, “I’ll have H2O, too!” The second man dies.

2. Three logicians walk into a bar. The bartended asks, “Do all of you want a drink?”
The first logician says, “I don’t know.”
The second logician says, “I don’t know.”
The third logician says, “Yes!”



3. Q: Why do engineers confuse Halloween and Christmas?
A: Because Oct 31 = Dec 25

4. A Buddhist monk approaches a hotdog stand and says, “Make me one with everything.”

5. Did you hear about the man who got cooled to absolute zero?
He’s 0K now.


6. An infinite number of mathematicians walk into a bar. The first orders a beer; the second orders half a beer; the third orders a quarter of a beer; and so on.
After the seventh order, the bartender pours two beers and says, “You fellas ought to know your limits.”

7. Pavlov is sitting at a bar when the phone rings. “Oh, no,” he said. “I forgot to feed the dog.”

8. Heisenberg was speeding down the highway. A cop pulls him over and says “Do you have any idea how fast you were going back there?” Heisenberg says, “No, but I knew where I was.”


9 . Einstein, Newton and Pascal are playing hide and seek. Einstein covers his eyes and starts counting. Pascal runs off and hides. Newton stands in front of Einstein and draws a square on the ground, one meter on each side. Newton then steps into the middle of the square. Einstein reaches 10 and uncovers his eyes. He spots Newton and exclaims, “Newton! I found you! You’re it!”

Newton smiles and says, “You didn’t find me; you found Pascal!”

10. The programmer’s wife tells him: “Run to the store and pick up a loaf of bread. If they have eggs, get a dozen.”

The programmer comes home with 12 loaves of bread.

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Amusing Monday: Between polar bears and penguins

In searching for amusing material, I came to realize that polar bears and penguins have developed an amazing friendship — at least in cartoons and amusing videos.

The examples are numerous, and I’ll share some of my favorites with you now:

1. A dancing bear who has moved in with a penguin angers the bird with his wasteful use of water. This video was produced for Environment Agency UK. (Click on the video player at right. And, of course, the “full screen” version is available.)

2. Apparently, a male polar bear can develop a close cross-species relationship with a female penguin, but he’d better watch what he says. The second video on this page is from 4Mations, another UK website dedicated to interesting and funny cartoons.

3. Friendship. Did I mention friendship? Check out this shocking promo for King Pundit.

4. Who can forget the Coke commercial in which the polar bear family accidentally invades a Christmas party being held by a large group of penguins?

5. Here’s one called “Cold Friendship,” but I have to admit that its subtle message runs a little too deep for me to locate.

6. Animal Planet’s series called “Animals Save the Planet” includes a cartoon about the benefits of energy-saving light bulbs. I’m not sure if the penguin is a slave or just enjoys a lot of exercise.

7. Someone put a couple of wildlife videos together to demonstrate the different lifestyles of penguins and polar bears. (By the way, I’ve heard that polar bears crawl along thin ice to reduce the risk of breaking through.)

While I enjoy all this paring of polar bears and penguins, I have to wonder how they ever got together. Polar bears live in the Arctic on the top side of the world, while penguins live in the Antarctic on the bottom.

Copyright David Farley. Used with permission of the artist.

Cartoonist Dave Farley has his own vision about what would happen if these two species ever got together. See cartoon at right. Check out Dave’s complete archive of cartoons at the Dr. Fun website.

Now on a more serious note, an online magazine called “Beyond Penguins and Polar Bears” has been written for elementary school teachers who wish to integrate science and literature. It’s a good place for anyone to learn about the polar regions of the Earth. According to the website’s creators, the first step toward understanding the two poles is to “develop a sense of place,” realizing that the Arctic and Antarctic are very different environments.

Amusing Monday: The fear of seafood

Seattle chef Becky Selengut, an expert in Northwest seafood, has been promoting her new book “Good Fish” about how to select and prepare seafood.

For a reporter, it would be obvious to interview her about the methods of cooking, unique dishes from the sea or “sustainable” seafood. I was amused by the approach taken by KUOW’s Megan Sukys, who talked with Selengut about how she overcame her early fears of eating seafood. Check out the report on KUOW, which includes an account of Becky’s uncle, who frightened a young girl as she tried unsuccessfully to chew up a clam for the first time.

The story reminded me of an incident involving my seafood-shy wife Sue, who never has been able to embrace the richness of Northwest seafood the way I do. If you ask Sue to try a bite of fish or shellfish, she demands to know, “Does it taste fishy?”

I never know how to answer this. If it tasted like chicken or steak, it would not be seafood. But I know what she means. Fish that is fresh always tastes better than the same item left on the shelf too long. The trouble is my tolerance for “fishy” is higher than hers.

Sue generally avoids shellfish as well, because — like a young Becky Selengut — she can’t stomach anything she can’t thoroughly chew up.

In 1992, Sue accompanied me to an awards ceremony in Olympia, where the book “Hood Canal: Splendor at Risk” was being recognized with a Governor’s Writing Award. Gov. Booth Gardner, who was in office at the time, presented the awards and invited everyone to a reception at the Washington Governor’s Mansion.

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Amusing Monday: A few Navy, Coast Guard jokes

I thought it would be great to pass along some water-related jokes linked to the Navy or Coast Guard. In searching the Internet, I found a few good ones, some clean and some dirty. It seems that most of the good jokes have simply been revised and recycled again and again through the years. There are plenty of bad jokes I would just as well forget.

Here are my favorites that seem suitable for general audiences. If you have heard a good joke about the military that you can share in good conscience, please feel free to write it down in the comments section below. If you know the source or remember where you first heard the joke, please mention that as well.
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Amusing Monday: Pictorial twists on words

This week I’m offering a bunch of visual puns, which use photos or drawings to help formulate special plays on words.

I bring these to you from the website somuchpun.com, where I found some amusing pictures last June and featured them in an “Amusing Monday” June 14 in Water Ways.

Besides the picture/word play, it is sometimes fun to read what people say in comments below each item. (Click on the picture.) Needless to say, some people are better than others with their punny comments.

funny puns - Thanks for the Advice Nemo!
see more So Much Pun

So that’s how you tuna fish

funny puns-So THAT's How You Tuna Fish!
see more So Much Pun
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Amusing Monday: Do these videos float your boat?

This week’s “Amusing Monday” is an experiment of sorts. It’s well understood that we humans often laugh when things surprise us. If the people involved recover from an unexpected event, we call it humor. If they don’t, we call it tragedy.

Hooked while jumping / From funnyhub.com

Some people find the following videos involving boat accidents quite funny, as revealed in the comments that follow on YouTube. Some people express concern for the people who were caught unaware.

I hope you find these amusing, since it appears that few of the people in the videos were seriously injured. But I would be interested to hear your viewpoints about what makes accidents humorous — or not.

Restored ship launched with great excitement.

He forgot to slow down.

Not all boats are built the same.

Watch out for that first step!

They don’t make boats like they used to.

I didn’t know that boats could fly.

Amusing Monday: When a joke becomes a graph

Are you familiar with the website Graph Jam?

It turns out that a graph or a diagram can be a brilliant way to tell a joke or drive home a point of view. Since it takes a moment to analyze the graph, the punchline is delayed. I suppose the joke is lost on those totally unable to read a graph.

Gayle Leonard, who features water humor in her offbeat blog “Thirsty in Suburbia,” found some fun with images related to water. I’ve added a few others. Click on any image to jump over to the original post, or visit the latest entries at Graph Jam, where you will discover plenty of funny graphs unrelated to water issues.

Funny graphs and charts
see more Funny Graphs

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Amusing Monday: The word play is the thing

Are you a person who likes puns? Personally, I’ve found that some people are far more punny than others.

I’m kind of in the middle. Some of my friends have laughed hysterically at certain kinds of word play, as I sit there wondering why I’m not amused.

I do enjoy some of the structured stories in which the punch line is a familiar phrase turned backward. According to Wikipedia, these punny stories are called feghoots. Here’s one:

Fishermen on the lake: Two fishermen were out on the lake when one of them dropped his wallet. As they watched the wallet float down to the depths of the lake, a carp came along and snatched up the wallet. Soon came another carp who stole it away and then a third joined in. Remarked one of the fisherman, “That’s the first time I’ve ever seen carp-to-carp walleting.”

I know there are better ones. I encourage you to share your favorites.

One kind of pun uses drawings or photographs to create the play. The Internet has become a great way to share these image-based ideas. I’ve borrowed a few of these from somuchpun.com.

One amusing feature of the site is that each entry contains comments from people struggling to use puns to contribute to the discussion.

Finding water on Mars

Here are some more image-based puns from the site

Mug shots

Ask Nietzsche

Fruit cocktail



I shot the serif

Amusing Monday: Joking about the environment

After poking fun at business and technology for years, “cyber-satirist” Bob Hirschfeld takes aim at the environmental movement. Although he supports the “green lifestyle,” he is able to point out humor that results from the bureaucracy and everyday chores involved in trying to save the environment.

That’s not as easy as you might think.

The 10-minute video at right presents excerpts recorded during a Hirschfeld presentation before a business group. I usually don’t offer videos of this length in “Amusing Monday,” but I found his humor to be rather engaging.

(Skip over the first minute of testimonials if you want to get into his standup routine.)

Water-related jokes from the video:
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