Tag Archives: humor

Super Bowl Ad Disturbed Me…Baby Smushing is Funny?

I actually watched most of the Super Bowl on Sunday. That’s the second time in two months that I tried to get through a complete game. No, that’s not true. By the time I found the TCU game on ESPN it was close to half time.

Most of the ads were just plain silly, as they are wont to be during the Super Bowl. However, there was one ad that caused me to involuntarily shudder. It was the one from HomeAway.com.

A brother and sister are pillow fighting over who gets to sleep on the bed in a hotel. The mother, who is holding what is supposed to be an audibly crying baby, puts the baby down on a bench. The father is hit in the face with a pillow and falls down on the bench hard enough that the other end of the bench flies up and the baby soars across the room and smushes against the glass window. At that point the viewer sees the face and realizes the baby is not real. The announcer then says, “Test baby”.

Rationally adults know as soon as the baby flies that it is not real. It takes a second for emotions to realize the same thing. In that second it is a gut wrenching reaction if you care at all about babies. Rationally you know this was an attempt at a sense of humor. Emotionally most people would be initially appalled with the exception of teenagers. Especially teen age boys. I’m sure there was a lot of laughter in millions of homes when the teens saw the baby go splat against the glass. “Cool!”

Perhaps I am off base today, but the thought crossed my mind that this ad is an example of desensitizing teenagers to pain felt by others, especially babies. It has been proved the brains of teenagers have not yet fully developed. Am I wrong if during this critical time, seeing episodes like this one could lead to decreasing empathy for children? From 1995 to 2007, the amount of children’s deaths has doubled due to child abuse. Older individuals in society tend to abuse those beings they view as less than fully human or as capable of feeling pain. Could this ad and similar others which might just follow be training videos for child abusers in the future?

If you google “What is the reason for child abuse?” , wikianswers quotes the following:

“The answer according to Dr Joel Akande of http://www.myeexpert.com, is simply that the abuser lacks insight into the value of the child. If you appreciate a thing say your car or your gold, you will protect it.

In general, human beings abuse anything (earth, animals, elderly people, strangers, people of different colours etc) that they either can not understand nor know its true value. Children are not different, regardless of various theories and claimed background histories of the abuser. No matter what the abuser may be going or may have gone through, as long as he/she maintains deep insight as to the child’s value, the child will be protected.”

It may have an even greater effect on younger children who view such a scene.

“When young children see somebody shot, stabbed, raped, brutalized, degraded, or murdered on TV, to them it is as though it were actually happening. To have a child of three, four, or five watch a “splatter” movie, learning to relate to a character for the first 90 minutes and then in the last 30 minutes watch helplessly as that new friend is hunted and brutally murdered is the moral and psychological equivalent of introducing your child to a friend, letting her play with that friend, and then butchering that friend in front of your child’s eyes. And this happens to our children hundreds upon hundreds of times.

Sure, they are told: “Hey, it’s all for fun. Look, this isn’t real, it’s just TV.” And they nod their little heads and say, “okay.” But they can’t tell the difference. Can you remember a point in your life or in your children’s lives when dreams, reality, and television were all jumbled together? That’s what it is like at that level of psychological development. That’s what the media is doing to them.” A perfect example of this jumbling occurred during the same game with the ad featuring the young “Darth Vader.”

Perhaps I’m in a small minority, but I have never been able to find humor is the pain of others.” America’s Funniest Home Videos” and the “Three Stooges” get the most laughs when pain is perceived to  be inflicted upon others.  This type of comedy is called slapstick and has been around to provide entertainment for centuries. Instead of being funny, I find that I involuntarily wince and sometimes turn my head when such “comedy” appears. It’s bad enough when the participants are adults.

I think this ad crosses the line. To portray the harm of babies as funny, is going too far.

When you go to homeaway, they have given the viewer three choices of what happens to the “baby”. The first choice is the baby  flying over the glass and falling several stories to the lobby below where the director catches it, then hands it to an assistant who drops it to the floor. Later you see the baby being swept up with a broom. The second choice is the baby flies through the glass thus being decapitated. The head falls off when it hits the ground. The third choice is the one chosen to air during the Bowl which shows the baby being smushed against the glass.

I am concerned by the increasing frequency of violence in our world, in our communities, on our TV. The Super Bowl is very closely associated with America. Is this the America we really want? Is this the America we will continue to accept? Probably. In my opinion, this commercial should have been penalized as a personal foul. Namaste Attic Annie

I  guess I was a little late in my reaction. The ad has been pulled. I am grateful that I was not the only one who did not see the humor of simulating injury to an infant.

AA

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The economy is so bad! (according to Maxine)

Welcome to my porch. It’s been a while since I remembered to say “howdy”! It is raining as I talk with you now but some times that is a favorite time for me to sit outside and watch the rain fall. OK. I’m easily entertained, what can I say?

I admit it. I’m a Maxine groupie. The same friend who sent me the video  yesterday also sent me the following Maxine cartoons. I’m afraid I don’t know that much about copyright laws. I guess if I’m going to have a blog for any length of time I’d better find out. I get cartoons in emails all the time. Is it OK for folks to send them in emails? Is it OK for me to use them in my blogs?

It’s obvious I am not the creative artist who produces Maxine. If I use any of his images in my blogs, am I supposed to credit him even if I do this free of charge? No one has given me a penny for my thoughts as of yet.

If I am to credit him then here is his credit. There, hopefully that will take care of that issue.

Everybody knows the economy is bad. Actually, we are told so many times a day in so many ways, I think perhaps it is time to get some comic relief going in this situation. I can say that because I haven’t lost my home, I managed to bail out of the stock market with my IRA not completely wiped out…seriously wounded, I will admit. I am managing to still live rather frugally on my teacher’s pension. (I am not a high maintenance person. If you knew me you would readily acclaim that is an understatement.)So therefore, in spite of the misery around me, I can see some humor in our situation.

The artist also sees humor…and unvarnished truth. I appreciate people who tell it like it is. And, thanks to Maxine, he does.

For those of you who haven’t been following my blog, the neighbor who lives across the street is the spitting image of Maxine. I talk about her every so often in my blog. She also tells it like it is. I wouldn’t have it any other way. I love her dearly. She is like the sister I wish I had. If I could, I would take a picture of her and post it on my blog. It would be difficult for you to tell which picture was the real one.

The economy is so bad. It will remain bad for quite some time. But at least there are some around who specialize in helping us discover for a few moments that if we are unable to laugh at this time in our lives, at least we might be able to smile a little. Did you know the economy is THIS bad?

I hope Maxine makes your day. Sometimes it  is the artists, writers, and poets among us who help us see situations like they really are. They can make true statements (generally) and it is protected under the Constitution…at least if the artist lives in America.

I see a lot happening in America that I feel needs to change, but using humor to help us get through the day is not one of them. Namaste. Attic Annie

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Blogs gain a life of their own…but in Serbia?

Think yellow instead of red

Today I was asked if I would consider another site posting one of my blogs on their site as a guest blogger. It was posted a couple of days ago, “*89 and still volunteering”. I told the inquirer that it was fine that she use it.

I know from the number of hits on some of my previous blogs that they must be reposted somewhere else. The blog’s editor was the first person to ever ask me if she could do that.

Sometimes for fun I click on the referrer list to see if I can find my blogs on other sites. Sometimes I can, sometimes I can’t. Sometimes people find me because of images I download into my blogs. Those I can usually recognize. One of my major hits blog is a blog I did early on concerning wanting to be like Florence Nightengale. People research her and end up finding my blog because of the picture I borrowed.

The referral I found today really astonished me. The site was called “The Tatoo Fever”. It was written in Serbian! Google was able to translate it roughly into English. I clicked on the first seven pages of their site but was unable to find anything that referred in any way to Attic Annie’s Blog.

It seems to me that one of my early blogs mentioned my getting a tattoo a few years ago. What I can’t figure out is how that blog found its way to a blog site dedicated to tattoos written in Serbia! I have no idea why my one sentence in the middle of a long blog about my tattoo which is smaller than the tip of my thumb could be of any possible interest to the people who visit that site. We are talking MAJOR artwork on those guys…whole heads, whole bodies. Makes my tiny yellow rose a major insignificant piece of art.

I had to giggle because the thought crossed my mind that I was glad there was no one around to help me take a picture of my pitiful tiny rose. That’s not exactly the way I would choose to achieve world wide fame…a picture of my derriere that hides under the back pocket of my jeans! Granted it would be such a close up that no one would be able to see anything else, but I doubt very seriously that anyone would ever want to! At least that small piece of skin is still not wrinkled like some of the rest of me is becoming but still….

I wrote a blog about “Why Teachers Drink”. Actually, all I did was transfer an email about test answers some British kids posted into my blog and add a short editorial comment. I discovered it was reposted as humor on some moderate Christian website. I have no idea how to ever find that site again.

The more I write on as wide a variety of topics as I can, the more I discover my blogs all over the internet. It makes me very aware that I really should be more conscious of what I write. My blogs are out there forever and ever. Once they are published and are reposted on other blogs, they achieve a life of their own. It’s no long possible as far as I know to recall them just by removing them from my own blog roll.

In the meantime I’ve kind of been thinking about adding a second rose. My family took a “trace your roots” tour to the European home city where the first patriarch of our family emigrated from about 150 years ago. We were able to see a brand new beautiful hybrid pinkish-red rose that is named for that city. Maybe…..nah!

Namaste. Attic Annie

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Errors to laugh at…we all need a break !

I think I finally found a way to transfer pictures from my email into my blog.

I think I’ve seen some of the following information before, but it is always worth a laugh…especially on a day that is supposed to be the last blast of winter here in Fort Worth. Enjoy!

I think there is supposed to be some kind of Darwinian law about culling out the species who writes newspaper articles like this, but they keep popping up, don’t they? Have a nice Sunday wherever you are. Maybe you can make one last fire in your fireplace. The top one was on a friend’s site on facebook. Namaste. Attic Annie

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Why Teachers Drink

I love my former teacher buddies. They often send me email that only those involved in education can truly appreciate. One teaches and teaches and reviews, then on test day, it’s not only the students who are apprehensive. The teachers get a grade every time they give tests as well. We find out how successful we are at really getting the material across to the students.

The following is an example of tests on days when we do not do as well as we hoped. The email came entitled “Why Teachers Drink!” I can’t think of a better title than that. Enjoy…and then pity the teachers. In this day and age of student accountability, the teachers are on the line too.

Revealed: The student howlers that show our dumbed down exams are still too much for some pupils

No matter how far our exams are dumbed down, it seems it’s not far enough for today’s pupils.

But rather than admit defeat in the face of tricky questions, some decide to take a more creative approach to their answers.

After scouring exam papers and speaking to teachers, humorist Richard Benson has collected the worst student howlers in a new book.

You won’t know whether to laugh – or cry.
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Taken from F In Exams: The Best Test Paper Blunders by Richard Benson (Summersdale Publishers, £5.99)

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1229099/Revealed-The-student-howlers-dumbed-exams-pupils.html#ixzz0eHzYmeNt

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Don’t Bungee Jump Naked! (If you are a senior citizen)

I was going to write about something else but I received this video in my email yesterday.. I can’t resist using Jeanne Robertson again. I enjoy her humor so much. She is a treasure. She proves a comedienne can be hilarious without resorting to being a foul potty mouth. I appreciate that.

Too many comics today think that the more they talk about bathroom behavior and use language which insults their mothers, the funnier they are. I disagree. Hopefully we will hear the pendulum swing in the other direction where comics once again rely on actually funny material to entertain their audiences. Jeanne Robertson is my age. I’d like to see a 20 something try her brand of humor for a change to show others it really can be done.

It takes a certain personality type to trust enough and be crazy enough to bungee jump. I could never do it. It’s not even close to what I would consider putting on my bucket list. I hope you had several laughs today. Namaste. Attic Annie

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Humor in the classroom, kids’ gifts to the teachers

OK. I’m not going to be very original today. I received this from a friend who still, in spite of many physical problems,  has her sense of humor and loves to send out email like this to her friends.  I’ve seen most of these before in one form or another, but I feel a need to laugh. These made me laugh. Just the thought of some of the nuns my friends used to tell me about is a cause for laughter itself.

Papers

Can you imagine the nun sitting at her desk grading these papers, all the while trying to keep a straight face and maintain her composure!

PAY SPECIAL ATTENTION TO THE WORDING AND SPELLING. IF YOU KNOW THE BIBLE EVEN A LITTLE, YOU’LL FIND THIS HILARIOUS! IT COMES FROM A CATHOLIC ELEMENTARY SCHOOL TEST.

KIDS WERE ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT THE OLD AND NEW TESTAMENTS. THE FOLLOWING STATEMENTS ABOUT THE BIBLE WERE WRITTEN BY CHILDREN. THEY HAVE NOT BEEN RETOUCHED OR CORRECTED. INCORRECT SPELLING HAS BEEN LEFT IN.

1. IN THE FIRST BOOK OF THE BIBLE, GUINESSIS. GOD GOT TIRED OF CREATING THE WORLD SO HE TOOK THE SABBATH OFF.

2. ADAM AND EVE WERE CREATED FROM AN APPLE TREE . NOAH’S WIFE WAS JOAN OF ARK. NOAH BUILT AND ARK AND THE ANIMALS CAME ON IN PEARS.

3. LOTS WIFE WAS A PILLAR OF SALT DURING THE DAY, BUT A BALL OF FIRE DURING THE NIGHT.

4. THE JEWS WERE A PROUD PEOPLE AND THROUGHOUT HISTORY THEY HAD TROUBLE WITH UNSYMPATHETIC GENITALS.

5. SAMPSON WAS A STRONGMAN WHO LET HIMSELF BE LED ASTRAY BY A JEZEBEL LIKE DELILAH.

6.. SAMSON SLAYED THE PHILISTINES WITH THE AXE OF THE APOSTLES.

7. MOSES LED THE JEWS TO THE RED SEA WHERE THEY MADE UNLEAVENED BREAD WHICH IS BREAD WITHOUT ANY INGREDIENTS.

8. THE EGYPTIANS WERE ALL DROWNED IN THE DESSERT. AFTERWARDS, MOSES WENT UP TO MOUNT CYANIDE TO GET THETEN COMMANDMENTS

9. THE FIRST COMMANDMENTS WAS WHEN EVE TOLD ADAM TO EAT THE APPLE.

10. THE SEVENTH COMMANDMENT IS THOU SHALT NOT ADMIT ADULTERY.

11. MOSES DIED BEFORE HE EVER REACHED CANADA THEN JOSHUA LED THE HEBREWS IN THE BATTLE OF GERITOL.

12. THE GREATEST MIRICLE IN THE BIBLE IS WHEN JOSHUA TOLD HIS SON TO STAND STILL AND HE OBEYED HIM.

13. DAVID WAS A HEBREW KING WHO WAS SKILLED AT PLAYING THE LIAR.. HE FOUGHT THE FINKELSTEINS, A RACE OF PEOPLE WHO LIVED IN BIBLICAL TIMES.

14. SOLOMON, ONE OF DAVIDS SONS, HAD 300 WIVES AND 700 PORCUPINES.

15. WHEN MARY HEARD SHE WAS THE MOTHER OF JESUS, SHE SANG THE MAGNA CARTA.

16. WHEN THE THREE WISE GUYS FROM THE EAST SIDE ARRIVED THEY FOUND JESUS IN THE MANAGER.

17. JESUS WAS BORN BECAUSE MARY HAD AN IMMACULATE CONTRAPTION..

18. ST. JOHN THE BLACKSMITH DUMPED WATER ON HIS HEAD.

19. JESUS ENUNCIATED THE GOLDEN RULE, WHICH SAYS TO DO UNTO OTHERS BEFORE THEY DO ONE TO YOU. HE ALSO EXPLAINED A MAN DOTH NOT LIVE BY SWEAT ALONE.

20. IT WAS A MIRICLE WHEN JESUS ROSE FROM THE DEAD AND MANAGED TO GET THE TOMBSTONE OFF THE ENTRANCE.

21. THE PEOPLE WHO FOLLOWED THE LORD WERE CALLED THE 12 DECIBELS.

22. THE EPISTELS WERE THE WIVES OF THE APOSTLES.

23. ONE OF THE OPPOSSUMS WAS ST. MATTHEW WHO WAS ALSO A TAXIMAN.

24. ST.. PAUL CAVORTED TO CHRISTIANITY, HE PREACHED HOLY ACRIMONY WHICH IS ANOTHER NAME FOR MARRAIGE.

25. CHRISTIANS HAVE ONLY ONE SPOUSE. THIS IS CALLED MONOTONY.

If I could give any beginning teacher some advice, it would be to maintain a journal of all the funny, original answers the children give on their tests and in the classroom. You know the ones. The ones like those above which make a teacher laugh.  I didn’t do it. I had my fair share of funny answers, but in the interest of getting the grading task done, I ignored the gems in my hands. I was in a classroom situation for thirty years and didn’t keep track of the priceless moments. It’s the things the kids say when they catch a teacher off-guard that are the gist of memories of a career.
I can remember a few things that happened in those thirty years but really only a very few. I can remember laughing and “losing it” but I think I tried too hard to always “be professional” to enjoy the moment. My teachers always took things in the classroom very seriously. None of them ever cracked a smile at any times. Those were the women who, unfortunately, were my role models. We NEVER said anything in their presence that would be in any way considered humorous. Yes, my advice would be “keep a journal….faithfully”. Children have been different from us for many, many years.
I remember the faces of the students who would make me laugh but I can’t remember what I would laugh about. Their words are long gone. That’s really sad. It’s those moments that make teaching worthwhile. It’s those times that go beyond “teaching to the test” that has so ominously invaded our classrooms that gives teaching a human perspective once again.
I suppose if I really sat down and thought, I would be able to conjure up more memories but at this instant all is a blur. I do remember one incident. When I taught fifth grade, I developed a speech unit. Those were in the days when I was working with gifted kids and free to teach whatever I wanted to. The administration was happy when test results came out and our kids blew the tops off the scores so, as long as the parents didn’t complain, we were free to do whatever we wished with them.
I had one child, Glen, who was one of the most reserved children in class. He was very polite and very quiet. In order for the children to develop a sense of verbally portraying various emotions, I had them sit in a circle and read the telephone book. The idea wasn’t original. I now can’t think of the entertainer who did that as part of his act, but it intrigued me that so many emotions could be portrayed in that simple act.
We went around the circle with each child trying and we finally reached Glen. The pain I felt for him was almost physical. I never thought he would even attempt it. I was so totally wrong. He stood up and soon had us in stitches with his various interpretations of emotions. He even had a mastery of hand gestures I had encouraged to give his performance some life. We ranged from almost crying to laughing hysterically within a very few moments. It was clear that underneath that reserve, Glen was a true actor. That part of his talent never ever had emerged in the classroom before.  It was obviously not what he said that I remembered but how he said it. He was priceless that day.
If teachers could relax enough to enjoy their children and the gifts they bring for opportunities for true humanity, I truly believe that classrooms could get around to changing the world, one funny appreciated comment as a time.
My cousin sent the following story in time for today’s blog. I think you’ll enjoy. Of course, you just KNOW that there was some “concerned” mother who went right up to the school when junior went home talking about what he learned in class that day.


The ‘Middle Wife’ by a 2nd grade Teacher.
I have been teaching now for about fifteen years. I have two kids myself, but the best birth story I know is the one I saw in my own second grade classroom a few years back.
When I was a kid, I loved show-and-tell. So I always have a  few sessions with my students. It helps them get over shyness and usually, show-and-tell is pretty tame.. Kids bring in pet turtles, model airplanes, pictures of fish they catch, stuff like that. And I never, ever place any boundaries or limitations on them. If they want to lug it in to school and talk about it, they are welcome.
Well, one day this little girl, Erica, a very bright, very outgoing kid, takes her turn and waddles up to the front of the class with a pillow stuffed under her sweater. She holds up a snapshot of an infant. ‘This is Luke, my baby brother and I am going to tell you about his birthday.’
‘First, Mom and Dad made him as a symbol of their love and then Dad put a seed in my Mom’s stomach and Luke grew in there. He ate for nine months through an umbrella cord.’
She is standing there with her hands on the pillow and I am trying not to laugh and wishing I had my camcorder with me.The kids are watching her in amazement…
‘Then, about two Saturdays ago, my Mom starts saying and going ‘Oh, Oh, Oh, Oh!’ Erica puts a hand behind her back and groans. ‘She walked around the house for, like an hour ‘Oh, oh, oh!’ (Now this kid is doing a hysterical duck walk and groaning.)
‘My Dad called the middle wife. She delivers babies, but she does not have a sign on the car like the Domino’s man. They got my Mom to lie down in bed like this.’ (Then Erica lies down with her back against the wall.)
‘And then, pop! My Mom had this bag of water she kept in there in case he got thirsty, and it just blew up and spilled all over the bed, like psshhheew!’ (This kid has her legs spread with her little hands miming water flowing away. It was too much!)
‘Then the middle wife starts saying ‘push,push,’ and ‘breathe, breathe. They started counting but never even got past ten then all of a sudden, out comes my brother. He was covered in yucky stuff that they all said it was from Mom’s play-center, (placenta) so there must be a lot of toys inside there. When he got out, the middle wife spanked him for crawling up in there.’
Then Erica stood up, took a big theatrical bow and returned to her seat. I am sure I applauded the loudest. Ever since then, when it is show-and-tell day, I bring my camcorder, just in case another ‘Middle Wife’ comes along.
Live every day as if it is your LAST chance to make someone happy.
Namaste. Attic Annie

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