Archive for Humor

Under standing

As we start a new year, and yet another election-reversal case is dismissed for lack of "standing", it's appropriate (or at least amusing) to revisit what Herbert Brün once wrote about (some other senses of) standing and understanding:

Not many people know how passionately dedicated they are to the society which they can not stand. Unaware of their living in contradiction they live in conflict.

Not many people know how passionately dedicated they are to the society which can not stand them. Unaware of their living in conflict they live in contradiction.

Nobody can stand not being stood.

Nobody wishes to admit that.

Everybody, therefore, searching for an admissible degree of relative comfort resorts to proper English and falsifies the issue, thus: It is difficult to understand why one is not understood.

This proper English falsification underlies the prose and poetry written about Arnold Schoenberg by those of his friends and followers who, once his apologetic avowers, today, equally apologetically, disavow him. It is an underlie, because it is not at all difficult to understand why one is not understood, and that one is not stood because one is understood, and that one can not stand that which one understands precisely because one does.

 

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Creative kanji

[The following is a guest post by Nathan Hopson]

The results are in from the 11th Kanji Creation Contest (Sōsaku Kanji Kontesuto), sponsored by Sankei Shinbun newspaper and the Shirakawa Shizuka Institute of East Asian Characters and Culture at Ritsumeikan University. Out of a total of over 26,000 entries in the general, high school, and elementary and middle school divisions, the overall winner was a very 2020 take on the character 座 (za, “to sit”).

Example 1

Fig. 1 Standard (left) and prizewinning creative kanji for “to sit.”

The character (in both its standard and creative forms) is made up of three elements:

  1. 广

Of these, it is the last that is subtly manipulated here. That element, also an independent kanji in its own right, means “person.” By moving the two “people” apart, the contest winner expressed the idea of “sitting apart,” or social distancing.

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"Spelling" Chinese characters without an alphabet

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No more plosive consonants: flay your fart!

A video by Peter Prowse has been making the rounds:

You might recall a similar French-language video last spring, which Mark Liberman shared in his May 1 post, "Rire la Rémumligne!" In fact, there were several versions of this floating around, all based on a text originally shared on Facebook by the physicist François Pla under the pseudonym Sam Anchman. (More information here and here.)

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"Under plenty of perjury"

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I have a joke, but …

A new (?) joke-rhetoric pattern has appeared recently on twitter, e.g.


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Liberté, Égalité, Gritté

I'm a few days late with this, but better late than never — Gritty as La Liberté guidant le peuple:


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Fur Seasons Total Landscaping

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Mandarin tongue twister

Trending on Weibo, a Chinese microblogging website:

[So as not to give anything away, all syllables are separated and not divided into words.]

Nǐ de huò lā lā lā bù lā lā bù lā duō? Huò lā lā lā bù lā lā bù lā duō yào kàn nǐ de huò lā dé duō bù duō. Rú guǒ lā dé bù duō jiù lā nǐ de lā bù lā duō, rú guǒ lā dé duō jiù bù lā nǐ de lā bù lā duō.

"你的货拉拉拉不拉拉不拉多?货拉拉拉不拉拉不拉多要看你的货拉得多不多。如果拉得不多就拉你的拉不拉多,如果拉得多就不拉你的拉不拉多。"

Google Translate:

"Your cargo pulls, pulls, pulls, pulls, pulls, pulls, pulls, pulls, pulls, pulls, pulls, pulls, pulls, pulls, pulls more? If you pull too much, it won’t pull you.

Before turning the page, if you know Mandarin, try to parse and translate the above sentences.

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"This ad will end in NaN"

All too true. Seen on thehill.com:

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Тяжёлый год – Hoy estoy peor que ayer – Fuck 2020


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Autological humor

A guest post (guest list?) by Anthony Bladon:

  • A verb walks into a bar, sees an attractive noun, and suggests they conjugate. The noun declines.
  • An Oxford comma walks into a bar, where it spends the evening watching television, getting drunk, and smoking cigars.
  • A dangling participle walks into a bar. Enjoying a cocktail and chatting with the bartender, the evening passes pleasantly.

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Anglophone accent imitation

(Plus one non-native accent…)

Almost a month old, but still relevant.

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