A Walk on the Lighter Side–Some Playful Jokes, Sayings, Puns, and Riddles

Laughing is inner jogging.—Norman Cousins

Along the journey of following Your Heart’s Desire we all need a good laugh now and then.  In the tradition of the Prairie Home Companion’s Annual Joke Night, I hereby declare, Friday, June 3rd, as our day to laugh here at the Wonder Child Blog.  Enjoy, and please send in your own funnies.  Maybe we’ll do this more than just once a year!  And hopefully we laugh here on other days too, of course…But for today…It’s laughing yoga time!


He hits from both sides of the plate.  He’s amphibious.—Yogi Berra

I think it’s wrong that only one company makes the game Monopoly.

–Steven Wright

You can’t have everything.  Where would you put it?—Steven Wright

A good pun is its own reword

Déjà Moo: The feeling that you’ve heard this cow before.

Does the name Pavlov ring a bell?

I get enough exercise just by pushing my luck.


What’s white when it’s dirty?—a blackboard.

What goes, “Oom, oom, oom?”—a cow walking backwards.

What’s the difference between here and there?—the letter t.

What’s the longest word in the dictionary?—Smiles.  There’s a mile between the first and last letter.

What do you call an ice cream man in Arizona?—The Good Yuma Man.

Wacky-Business Card:

Mr. Phil T. Hans—Soap Manufacturer


Many years ago, a baker’s assistant called Richard the Pourer, whose job it was to pour the dough mixture in the making of sausage rolls, noted that he was running low on one of the necessary spices. He sent his apprentice to the store to buy more.

Unfortunately, upon arriving at the shop, the young man realized that he had forgotten the name of the ingredient. All he could do was to tell the shopkeeper that it was for Richard the Pourer, for batter for wurst.


 A group of chess enthusiasts checked into a hotel and were standing in the lobby discussing their recent tournament victories. After about an hour, the manager came out of his office and asked them to disperse. “But why?” they asked, as they moved away. “Because,” he said, “I can’t stand chess nuts boasting in an open foyer.”

Some Odd Book Titles and their Odd Authors

Downpour! By Wayne Dwops
Cloning by Ima Dubble
Handel’s Messiah by Ollie Luyah
Avoiding High Construction Costs by Bill Jerome Home
The Pain of Unemployment by Anita Job
The Tiger’s Revenge by Claude Butz
The French Chef by Sue Flay
Tight Situation by Leah Tard

More Groaners

There were two ships. One had red paint, one had blue paint. They collided. At last report, the survivors were marooned.

Question: How did Christopher Columbus finance his trip to America? Answer: With the Discover Card.

Office door of NASA executive: ‘Out to Launch.’

Recently a guy in Paris nearly got away with stealing several paintings from the Louvre. However, after planning the crime, getting in and out past security, he was captured only 2 blocks away when his lorry ran out of gas. When asked how he could mastermind such a crime and then make such an obvious error, he replied: I had no Monet to buy Degas to make the Van Gogh.

And One More for the Road

Scientists found a way to clone a bit of Shakespeare’s DNA and recreate The Great Bard. Naturally, ABC, NBC, CBS, and CNN were vying with each other to get him on their networks. When they approached Mr. S with their offers, how did he respond? TV or not TV, that is the question.

Copyright Joseph Anthony of the Wonder Child Blog

Wind, Prayers, and Amazing Eighth Graders


It is wonderful how memories, locked in the body, surface during anniversaries.  Last year, at just about this time, I experienced an adventure with my six-eighth grade students that I want to share.  This piece first appeared in a school newsletter.  Only minor changes have been made.

The winds didn’t just blow in our faces—they roared with a monstrous fury.  The Eighth Graders and I had already been paddling along the San Juan River that day for about 12 miles when a wind storm tore through the canyon.  With the sun setting far too quickly for comfort, and our arms aching, doubt spread through our minds as to whether or not we would make it to a place to stop for the night.  If the kids stopped paddling for even a second the winds would blow us backwards against the current.  Two-to-three foot white cap waves splashed at us as we struggled to move forward. 

One of our guides decided to link the students raft with the two-thousand pound supply raft that he and I were on.  Then he got up, took the rope at the front of the raft, and stepped into the river and began pulling us like an ox.  I took over at the oars while the three boys got out of the raft and began pulling also, but the bottom of the river dropped out on them and they had to get back in and paddle again.  The three girls paddled with adrenaline-laced power and kept everyone’s spirits from flagging.  It was an amazing thing to experience—the Eighth Graders and our second guide paddling, never giving up, never stopping.  They fought and they pushed and we kept going. 

As the wind was smacking us with an absurd ferocity, I began to pray that it would stop.  “Give these kids a break,” I ordered the Almighty.  I wanted them safe on dry land; I wanted the wind storm to stop and for the setting sun to pause in its descent so we would have enough light to get to ashore and unpack.  But the wind just kept blowing and I just got madder.

We finally made it however to a place where we could pull over for the night.   We cheered as we saw the site.  Little did we know the worst was yet to come. 

It began to hail a few minutes after we got out of the rafts and, the winds, unbelievably, picked up strength.  As we wrestled to put up our tents, the winds tore through the camp like a wild freight train.  Somehow we managed to get the tents up using huge rocks to hold the spikes down. 

As the students were working I took one of our guides aside and said, “So what are we really dealing with here?”  “I don’t know,” he replied, “I’ve never been in such a severe storm.  We don’t just have the wind to worry about.  I’m concerned about flash flooding and about those rocks above us.  If it rains in the night it might only be a matter of minutes before we have to scramble up the rocky cliff 30 feet to safety before a wall of water rushes through here.  We can’t even get a helicopter in here to take us out; it would never make it in here with these winds.  We’re just going to have to hold on and do our best.  We’re in a dangerous situation.” 

“Lovely,” I thought.  This wasn’t what I signed us up for. 

That night, the wind stampeded through the camp, like a herd of crazed ghost-horses.  It would stop for a few seconds and the pressure would drop in your chest, but then you could hear the wind coming again–smashing its way along the canyon walls.  One of the guides estimated the wind gusts at 30-50 mph.  The sand on the bank was swirling in our eyes, ears, and mouths, but at least the hail had stopped. 

That night I laid awake the whole night as the wind rattled my tent like a drunken gorilla.  I prayed as the storm increased in intensity.  I just wanted it to stop.  I was scared for my students and for myself.  I could hear a couple of the students crying in the night and I got even madder at God.  I demanded the storm to stop.  But it just kept raging.  I was furious for my lack of faith.  For if I had enough I could have calmed that storm, but I didn’t.  In the end however, God worked that out for a good reason.

In the early morning the air was still and almost contemplative.  The storm had finally whirled its way out and we were all safe and sound—sandy, exhausted, but safe. 

Later that night, during our sharing circle, every one of the students said, to my surprise, that, while they were scared of the storm and that the paddling through it to get to camp was excruciatingly difficult, they were all glad they had gone through the experience.  They all felt powerful, like they could accomplish anything.  They had worked together in a very dangerous situation and made it through.  As I listened to them I realized why my prayers were not answered.  I realized (again) that I don’t always know what’s best.  The experience I wanted to end became a life-changing, life-empowering experience for the Eighth Graders that they will never forget.  Of course, my prayers weren’t wrong—they were the obvious ones to pray, and the storm did eventually stop, and everyone ended up OK.  It just goes to show the Powers That Be have better plans than my own often emotion-tinged ones.  This adventure had made them better friends, better people.

When we got back to base camp there were whispers among the staff about my class: “That’s the class that made it through the storm.  Those are the kids who paddled 56 miles up the San Juan River in 3 days and made it through that wind storm.”  One of the directors of the camp came up to me as we were leaving.  “You have amazing students,” he said, “really amazing.”

“Thank you. I know,” I said, beaming with pride, “I know.”

Copyright Joseph Anthony of the Wonder Child Blog

Your Heart’s Desire, Part 6, Paragraph VII

Welcome Back Dear Friends!  

This week is not quite as heavy as last. 

It’s still challenging,

just not quite as heavy.

In fact, I will be using a tone

that I’ve never used here before.

It is not meant to offend.

It is meant to challenge.

For just as the butterfly

needs the challenge of hatching from a cocoon,

so we need the challenge of breaking out

of old, worn out beliefs.

Let me say here that

the heart of Your Heart’s Desire is fast approaching

Over the next couple of weeks

the key to the treasure box gets revealed

It is an elusive key. 

Yet it is perfectly graspable. 

It is also radiantly golden. 

It is the key to anything you have found difficult thus far. 

It is the key to achieving Your Heart’s Desire, and

if everyone would use this key,

 it would also bring about peace and harmony

throughout the world. 

So keep moving forward. 

You have made many choices to bring you this far. 

There’s no going back. 

You’re in it

You are living Your Heart’s Desire already,

and it is about to blossom further

into form.

Cheers, and enjoy the journey.

Paragraph Seven, by Emmet Fox

“It is useless to blame Providence for your troubles, or to endeavor to saddle the responsibility upon other people.  The universe operates strictly in accordance with Law, for God, among other things, is Principle, or Law, and where law obtains there can be no room for the idea of blame.  If you break the law, you suffer the consequences, and that is all there is about it.  It is not a matter of blame or punishment.  It is just an impersonal question of cause and effect.  This may seem hard at first sight, but actually it is your certain guarantee of ultimate victory and freedom.  Impersonal Law is certain to hurt you when you work against it, but, for the same reason, it is equally certain to help you and heal you when you work with it.”

Commentary, Questions, and Exercises, by Joseph Anthony

Over the years I have had the wonderful opportunity to work with many people recovering from various addictions.  This is both rewarding and heartbreaking work.  One of the most astoundingly tragic things I have witnessed while listening to recovering people is when someone utters something like this:

I’ll stay sober today, if it’s God’s Will.” Or, “God’s Grace has been sufficient to keep me sober today.”

The tragedy comes when these people resort to their destructive behaviors again as they so often do.  Who can believe in a God that would will you drunk? Who could really believe in a God who would have it be His will that you destroy your life and the lives of those around you?   The people who make statements such as these are, forgive my bluntness, fundamentally misguided or for lack of a better word, lazy.  I know that sounds harsh, but I know this to be the case, because I used to say things like that, and that’s what I was being.  It is the same for people who say: “God’s grace is sufficient to keep me sober today.”  Does that mean, if that person gets drunk the next day, that God’s Grace—God’s Infinite, Unlimited, Boundless Grace was suddenly insufficient?  “You know what I mean,” People will argue,  “Sobriety is a gift from God’s Grace.”  And to that I would completely agree. 

But it is not a free gift. 

I have to accept it, and that takes an enormous amount of work for self-centered people.  I know.  And it isn’t simply a matter of theological semantics.  The words we say are powerful things.  That’s why I am speaking in a tone not usually heard here at Your Heart’s Desire.  So let me repeat: the words we say, and the thoughts (if there are any) behind them are very powerful.  I say, “if there are any thoughts behind them” not to be offensive or mean, but because so many of us do and say things for reasons we do not know.  We do and say things because other people do and say them.  We follow.  We parrot.  We copy. And if I want to follow my Heart’s Desire, I need to an original; I need to accept the responsibility for my life—completely.  I need to work with God’s gifts in the same way I would as if someone gave me a new guitar.  If I just let it sit there, what good would it be?  I need to use it, practice it, work with it, share it—that’s accepting the gifts of God.  It is not a passive activity. 

I am always amazed at how many times little children tattle on their friends for copying them.  I hear this almost every day. “She’s copying me!” they protest.  And the interesting thing is the reason they are so outraged is because they do it themselves.  From the ages of four or five we begin projecting our blame and outrage onto others. 

I bring these things up because so many of us live in a victim mentality.  Our entire culture is shot-through with victimology and blame.  It is a virus passed on by word-of-mouth as people complain about their lot in life but never do anything to improve it.  The person listening, or should I say, hearing the complaint, is then infected.  And they, in turn, pass it along.

To live in the spirit of Your Heart’s Desire, means putting away the old ideas of being a victim and blame.  Even if things happened to us that were traumatic, as they did to me, we still need to lift our consciousness above the hurt and even above the level of survivor.  We need to live—fully and lavishly.

Paragraphs like number seven would have outraged me years ago for the simple reason that I did not want to be responsible for my own actions.  Everything I’ve commented about here would have thrown me into a tizzy.  I would have been deeply offended at being challenged in the way I have just challenged you. I never wanted to be responsible or accountable to anyone.  I blamed everyone for my problems.  I felt like I was above the law.  For example, I used to cross the street wherever I felt like it, even though there were crosswalks at the corners—but I didn’t want to walk that extra 100 feet—jay-walking laws did not apply to me.  I only started obeying this law when it was pointed out to me by my friend Lefty that I have lived above the law for many years—or so I thought.  (Really I was living below them.)

And so if I feel laws like jaywalking do not apply to me, and that I can ignore them at will, why would I bother to follow God’s laws?

What are God’s Laws?  We will talk about these in a later entry, but for now, suffice to say God’s Laws are all wonderful, easy to understand, and sometimes really hard to follow.  Also we know when we break them—we get physically, emotionally, and spiritually sick.  We know when we’re following them too.  We’re healthy, happy, and following our dreams.


1). Do all laws matter and should they all be obeyed?

2). Do you believe you have complete responsibility for your life?  Why or why not?

3). If you feel you have been victimized in some way, are you willing to consider that it is time to move towards the freedom of total personal responsibility now—for how you’re living now—not for what happened to you, but for how you are dealing with it now? Are you willing to seek support for any deep, traumatic experiences you are struggling to process?

4). Do you believe God’s Laws are just, merciful, and necessary?

5). Reflect on the following statement: And Jesus answering said unto them, Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s. (Mark 12:17).  How do you think this relates to obeying the law?


1). Consider the following questions: Do you jay walk?  Do you speed?  Do you burn cd’s that you haven’t paid for? If you answered yes to any of these questions, reflect on why you feel like you are above the law.

2). Reflect on what the word responsibility means to you.  What sorts of feelings, thoughts, and images does it bring up?

3). Reflect on a time when you either blamed someone for something you knew you were really responsible for or they blamed you for something you knew you didn’t do.  Reflect on ways to remedy this experience.

4). Resolve to obey one “little” law this week that you routinely break–like, perhaps, jay walking.  Notice how you feel obeying this law.  Is it inconvenient?  Is it liberating?

Thank you for sharing Your Heart’s Desire with me.  Next week brings Part 7, paragraphs 8 and 9.  Cheers.

Copyright Joseph Anthony of the Wonder Child Blog