Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Use Wit and Humor to be an Effective Speaker

Start and intersperse your speech with appropriate wit and humor. First, break the ice, keep the attention of your audience to the end, motivate them and impart a lasting lesson.  

Dr Abe V Rotor 
Living with Nature - School on Blog 

Reference: All about Humor
The art of Using Humor in Public Speaking
By Anthony L Audrieth

Break the ice.  Examples  ”It’s a good thing love is blind; otherwise it would see too much.” Advice to doctors: “When treating cases of amnesia, collect the fee in advance.”

Types of Humor

Anecdote (funny short story you have personal knowledge of.) Lincoln is a master anecdote teller.

Antonymism (contrasting words or phrases) “The girl with a future avoids a man with a past.” 
“A woman begins by resisting a man’s advances and ends by blocking his retreat.” – Oscar Wilde

Banter (among close friends) “Here he comes, hide his shorts you stole from him.” Of course this is not true. "Here comes the biggest carabao in the Philippines." the late Senator Aquino to then Senator Erap Estrada the sponsor of the Carabao Bill 

Biogram (witticism about a famous person)
“Adam was the happiest man in the world because he had no mother-in-law.”
”Venus is a woman whose statue shows us the danger of biting our finger nails.”

Blendword (coinage of new words): “smog for smoke and fog.” “scurry for scatter and hurry.” “eat and run.”

The happy genius, Albert Einsten

Blunder (wit, a person who makes mistakes, makes look foolish)
“Dr Cruz returned from the US yesterday and will take up his cuties (duties) at the hospital.”
“Is it kistomary to cus the bride?” over eager newly wed to the officiating minister.

Bonehead (headline boner) “Population of RP broken down by sex and age.” “Girl disappears in bathing suit.” “Three men held in cigarette case.”

Boner (slip, short and pointed mistakes with amusing effect.) “The future of to give is to take.” The king wore a robe trimmed with vermin.”

Bull (absurd contradiction) “May you live all the days of your life.” – Jonathan Swift.  “The happiest man on earth is one who has never been born.” “Miriam Santiago was the best Philippine president we never had.”  Eulogy for (of) the late senator.

Burlesque (satire) Story of the Frog and a Princess. The princess related the story to her mother. … the next morning when the princess awoke, she noticed alongside her a handsome Prince.  And would you believe it? To this day her mother doesn’t believe a word of this story.

Caricature (exaggeration in ludicrous distortion)  “He is so tall he has to stand on a chair to brush his teeth.”

Catch Tale (funny story, with a catch at the end.  “She laid still white form beside those that had gone before.  No groan, no sob forced its way from her heart.  Then suddenly she let forth a cry that pierced the stillness of the place, making the air vibrate with a thousand echoes.  It seemed to come from her very soul.  Twice the cry repeated, then all was quiet again.  She would lay another egg tomorrow.”

Confucian Sayings (Ironic, yet with aphorisms; witticism ) Confucius says “Ostrich that keep head in sand too long during hot part of day burned in the end.” “Easy for girl to live on love if he rich.” “Man who make love to girl on hillside, not on level.”

Conundrum (riddle, word puzzle quite impossible to solve) “Why does a cow wear a bell? Its horns don’t work.”  “What is worse than seeing a worm in an apple? Seeing only half of the worm.”

Cumulative humor (chain-story pattern) From an old English classic: “For want of a nail, the shoe was lost.  For want of a shoe, the horse was lost.  For want of a horse, the rider was lost.  For want of a rider the battle was lost.  For want of a battle, the kingdom was lost  And all for the want of a horseshoe nail.”

Double Blunder (mistake and another in an attempt to correct the first) A man in a party turns to another and asks, “Who is that awful-looking lady in the corner?’ “Why she is my wife.” Says the second man.  “Oh, I don’t mean her,” the quick evasion.  “I mean the lady next to her.” “That,” cries the man indignantly, “is my daughter.”

Epigram (prose witticism, satire, evils and follies of mankind)”The world should make peace first and then make it last.”  “Always do your best, but not your best friend.” “We don’t get ulcers from what we eat, but what is eating us.” “When you are right, no one remembers, when you are wrong no one forgets.” 

Exagerism (overstatement, features, focuses on defects, peculiarities) “She is so industrious, when she has nothing to do she sits and knits her brows.” Story of a very strong typhoon by three humbugs: First, “.. so strong the wind blows you down the street.”  Second: “In our place it’s so strong, when a carabao smiles it surely loses its hide.” Third: “Both your typhoons are nothing; in my place the flashlight can keep its light straight through the wind.”  “A tree once grew rapidly that it actually pulled itself up by its roots. (early 1800 jokes called Yankeeism, Jonathonism)

Extended proverb (twisted proverb) “An apple a day keeps the doctor away.” Becomes an onion s day keeps everyone away.” “There’s no fool like an old fool – because he had more experience. “He who hesitates is probably torn between vice and versa.”   

Fool’s Query (foolish question) Guide explaining to tourists: “And these rock formations were piled up by the glaciers,” he said.  “but where are glaciers?” asked an elderly woman.  “They’ve gone back Madam, to get some more rocks.” Was the reply.

Freudian slip (humorous accidental statement) After a party a couple attended, the wife said warmly with a handshake, “It was so nice for us to come.” (Freud discovered accidental slips are subsurface thought processes that remove neurotic symptom.

Gag (clever remark funny trick) “Did you get up with a grouch today?” “No, she got up before me.”

Mixed words (after Goldwynism, moviemaker) “Answer me a question.” (from Lost Horizon).  Hapasible (hampass is to blow) “Shinong lashing?”  Drunk

Hecklerism (heckling, noisy drunk interrupting emcee) “Hey, you are a day late!” “Why don’t you tell that to the marines!”
Irony (expressing opposite of what is really meant)  When Lincoln was once  told that a northerner politician had expressed a strong dislike for him, he stroked his chin in perplexity. “That’s odd,” he said. “I cant understand why he dislikes me.  I never did.”

Response of a lottery winner to a friend who asked, “Are you excited?” “Me excited? I’m as calm as a man with his pants on fire.”

There was a young man who left town, went to a big city and made quite a name for himself.  After five years absence he arrived at a train station in his old home town.  Despite his expectations there was no one at the platform he knew.  Discouraged he sought out the station master, his friend since childhood.  To him at least he would be welcome, and he was about to extend a hearty greeting, when the other spoke first.  “Hello George,” he said. “Going away?”

Malapropism (French mal-a-propos, inappropriate, out of place) “Please, ladies, feel in the family way.” (feel at home) “I approve the permanent appointment of all prostitute teachers.”  (substitute teachers) 

Marshallism (satiric, twist-witticism, attributed to US V Thomas Marshall) What is country needs a man who can be right and President at the same time.” “What our country needs is more of good citizens and less of law.”

Mistaken Identity (comic confusion of one person or thing with another) portrays ignorant person or simpleton. “Hi, George, Happy birthday.” “ I’m Johnny, he is George,” pointing at the celebrant. 

Nonsensism ((mock logic, fallacies without reason, epigram, wisecrack) “She has money more than she can afford.”  “My father and mother are cousins – that’s why I look so much alike.”

Parody (satire, wordplay) “Don’t worry if your job is small.  And your rewards are few,  Remember that the mighty oak was once a nut like you.”

Personifier (celebrity’s most typical trait, related to caricaturism and biogram) , “Samson was so strong, he could lift himself by his hair three feet off the ground.”

Practical Joke (joke put to action). Gadget prank, rough. Discomforting. “Here’s your fruit juice. Toast.” It turn out to be liquor, and the poor fellow coughs.  Laughter. 

Recovery (blunder and wit combined)An employee was found asleep by his foreman.  “Good heavens!” he cried upon being awakened. “Can a man close his eyes for a few minutes of prayer?”

The Relapse (opposite of Recovery) A man bought a railroad ticket, picked up the change, and walked off.  After a few minutes he returned and said to the agent. “You gave me the wrong change”  “Sorry, sir” replied the mam behind the window. “You should have called my attention to it at the time.”  “Okay.” Acquiesced the passenger, “You gave me fiver dollars too much.” To Dr Kinsey, the sexiologist, a lady asked at the end of his lecture in the Q & A period, “Tell me Dr Kinsey, what is really the vital difference between a man and a woman?” “Madam, I can not conceive.” 

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