Purpose of the Joke Master

April 16, 2021 | By pkelley | Filed in: Jokes.

What is the purpose of the Joke Master?

Officially:

The Joke Master role gives members the opportunity to warm up the meeting with humor

  • The JM explains to visitors and guests what a joke-master does
  • Crafts jokes to coincide with the meeting Theme “Mindset
  • Experience how and when to insert humor into meetings
  • Tell a 2 minute mini-story that includes elements of a 5 to 7 minute speech

Your job as Joke Master is to learn what types of humor work well for you and what makes you crash and burn on stage.

Position of Jokester

Benefits to the Audience:

  • Relieves tension
  • Reduces Anxiety
  • Calms Feelings of Fear / Glossophobia public speaking
  • Puts Audience Members at Ease

Benefits to the Jokester:

On opportunity for members to:

  • Connect with the Audience
  • Exercise the funny bone
  • Take chances and challenge an audience with an idea
  • Hone humor skills to a sharp rapier wit

Theme of The Meeting

“Mindset”

On His First Day at School The teacher asked,

“Johnny do you know your numbers.?”

“Oh Yes,” Johnny answered quickly. “Grandpa Bob taught me.”
“Very good.” said the teacher. “So you can tell me what number comes after three?”
“Four,” answered the boy.
“Excellent” praised the teacher. “And what comes after six?”
“Seven.”
“Your grandfather Bob did a good job.” the teacher continued, “And what comes after 10?”
“the Jack”

Develop A Serious Mind-Set about Jokes

Humor is a critical part of successful public speaking communication tools.

When it comes to jokes…

one man’s trash is another man’s opportunity to make it trashier…

Success of humor depends upon shared experiences through sorrow and and pain…or alcohol…and there is always safety in numbers.

Besides, What could possibly be funnier than exposing the 3 M’s of shared memories

  • Misery
  • Misfortune
  • Mayhem

…all before a friendly, forgiving audience.

Experts Say…Avoid the B’s

  • Bedroom
  • Barroom
  • Bathroom

And

experts say…certain other topics should be avoided too like

  • Politics 
  • Religion… yada, yada, yada

and yet…

If the Three Wise Men were Women…

If the Three Wise Men going to Bethlehem had been women…

they would have:

  • asked for directions,
  • arrived on time,
  • cleaned the stable,
  • made a good meal
  • and brought practical gifts for the baby.

Structure of a Joke

The Joke-master may choose to deliver any form of funny he or she thinks will gain a laugh, be it a

    • short one-liner,
    • a Shaggy-Dog groaner (use sparingly if at all)
    • the funniest story ever told…

The challenge is to successfully craft and deliver humor for consumption by General Audiences

Never Read a Joke.

When a joke is read, the voice is flat and the joke loses its punch.

There are exceptions Victor Borge, a pianist comedian who invented sounds for punctuation (Exclamation points, periods, question marks, commas and quotes.) which he would pronounce aloud while reading the text. 

Steve Allen a Late Night comedian who read the pop song “Bee Bop-A-Loo-Bah, You are My Baby…” in prose.

  • Written English requires punctuation.
  • Spoken English requires intonation, vocal variety, facial expressions, gestures

Lasting Respects

Joe and Jake, two homeless men, stopped on the street to pay respects to a passing funeral procession.
The long black hearse gleamed in the sunlight and was followed by an impressive line of expensive cars, all packed with wreaths, flowers and mourners.
Joe remarked, “Now, There goes a rich guy.” Jake says, “Ya, I’ve seen a few funerals like this before. I bet he’s layin on soft satin pillows inside a big mahogany casket that’s got gold handles all polished up so you can see your reflection.”
Joe continues, “They’ll stick him in that mausoleum up ahead with stone doors and give him a send off with prayers then and hold a big fancy reception with every kind of food, drink and song imaginable.”
Jake takes a deep breath and nods his head. “…now that’s what I call living.”

How & Where to find Humor

Easiest: Search the Internet. You’ll find endless joke-ad-farms but drawbacks are you run the chance people may have heard the joke already already.

Better; Search through old, discontinued library books in thrift stores and bargain basement book sales where you will find tons of humor….that contain out-dated, questionable and /or inappropriate humor that you can change and adapt.

Best: Find funny General Audience jokes and stories in magazines such as,

  • Reader’s Digest
  • Toastmasters Magazines
  • Boy’s Life
  • Military Life
  • Local Club, School, Work Newsletters

In Humor…Incongruity Works Best

Incongruity is the fast track to receiving the biggest belly laughs.

Plus the more personal you can make a humorous story,

the funnier, and more believable it becomes.

The secret to a surprise ending (punchline) is to weave the story to lead the audience toward a logical conclusion then…

Dinner With Father

“I had dinner with my Father last week”and made the classic Freudian slip.”
I meant to say…”
Please pass the salt” but it came out
You SOB …you ruined my childhood”

This ancient one-liner “the Freudian Slip” contains all the elements of a 3-part speech.

The opening…to capture attention, the lead-in to the Joke…, the body and conclusion in 30 seconds or less.

Altering Jokes: Play “Can I Top This?”

Do not hesitate to alter a joke to make it a personal story.

When you find a joke that makes you laugh out loud, rewrite it to see if you can make it funnier.

Write the joke out, change names, dates, places to make the jokes a part of your own life.

Practice delivery the as a regular speech.

  • Practice vocal variety, speak clearly and audibly (avoid accents)
  • Have a clear opening, body and conclusion (aka punchline)
  • Practice making the joke funnier
  • Practice timing – Learn to relish the long … pause … to give audience time to discover the joke and hopefully…laugh.
  • Smile – never laugh at your own jokes

Practice, practice, practice…is the tool that hones the skill of humor.

The more often and concise you speak with humor the more successful your jokes will be especially if you utilize long setups for punchlines.

The 12th Hole

At the 12th hole of a hotly contested game of golf, Smith spied a long funeral procession making its way along the highway bordering the golf course.
Immediately, Smith stopped, took off his hat placed it over his heart . He bowed his head until the entire procession disappeared around the bend.
He then put his hat back on his head and proceeded to continue the game.
Astonished, Jones said “I am impressed. That was an incredibly respectful gesture you showed to that procession.”
To which Smith replied “Well, I couldn’t do any less…I was married to the woman for 35 years.”

Rehearse, rehearse, rehearse until you can tell the joke comfortably Without notes.

Create “Humor Scripts” Aka Stereotypes

Treasury of Humor by Isaac Asimov, suggests to allow stereotypes (accurate or not) to work for you”

Create your own “humor scripts” based upon stereotypes and use your collections of characters to create your own funny stories.

All writers of jokes and stories depend upon use of stereotypes,

Without stereotype short cuts a 2 minute joke would take a day-and-a half to tell.

  • Country Waitress
  • Bumbling Clown
  • Accountant

Humor scripts work because in most every every stereotype there is a germ of truth.

Example:

A group of Jewish women seated at a restaurant table for lunch. The waiter asks, “Ladies, is anything all right?”

The last Word

Laughter comes naturally to people.

We come into life as babies laughing and with luck we can go out with a laugh too…

as did comedian Rodney Dangerfield with this famous final one liner.

Just before heart-valve surgery Dangerfield was asked about how long he expected to be hospitalized:
he responded
If all goes well, about a week. If not, about an hour-and-a half”

Resources and references

https://www.toastmasters.org/magazine/magazine-issues/2018/apr2018/humor

http://www.danielyerelian.com/blog/2011/09/25/toastmasters-roles-how-to/#jokester

http://papagotoastmasters.com/jokemaster.php

https://www.toastmasters.org/Magazine/listing/archive/all Vintage Toastmaster Magazines

https://www.ebay.com/b/Readers-Digest-Magazines/280/bn_36838473 Reader’s Digest on E-bay

Boy’s Life https://scoutlife.org/section/magazine/

https://www.mentalfloss.com/article/538490/worlds-oldest-jokebook

Steve Allen poem: Be Bop-a-Loo-Ba https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BAyxatBvKfg

Victor Borge’ Punctuation https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n4MhcWImGkM


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