Saturday, August 11, 2012

Preface To Jokes: How To Tell A Joke

I am not a comedian no matter how funny I think I am.  I certainly amuse myself.  But here's a link from a toastmaster(*) on how to tell a joke.

I have no idea if his advice is any good, though I've noticed that one tip - "Never start off by telling your audience how funny the joke is" - is pretty true, & any preface on how funny the joke is will be in direct proportion to the amount of laughter in the room after the joke is done (assuming everyone isn't drunk or high, which changes a lot of things).  Another sign something someone said isn't funny - when the person laughs after the joke.  They're hoping that their laughter is infectious, & it's a desperate thing an insecure person will always do to alert you that they've just told a joke & if you don't laugh, it'll hurt their feelings.

There's another list here at, the best advice of which is this: "Avoid telling any joke you don't understand."  I wish someone had told me that when I was a child!

Okay, I could use that advice these days, too.

(*) This is what a "toastmaster" is, but the link from the website for Toastmasters International.

Friday, August 10, 2012

A Day Off From Blogging

What? I hear you not really say.  A day off from the Self Help Radio blog?  Don't you only blog five days a week?  Why do you need another day off?  What are you, German?

Technically, though, it's not really a day off, as I am here to write about an imaginary conversation between a "reader" (certainly an imaginary person who check out this blog) & "me" (a person who does a radio show which is so inconsequential it sometimes feels imaginary).  & yet, I want to apologize for the lack of content here, since I do like to write in the blog five days a week.

Wait!  I have news!  Republican candidate What's-His-Name Ken-Doll-Guy has chosen his running mate!  It's someone some people thought it would be, but other people might be surprised about!  How dramatic!  It should make all the weekend news shows!

That was worth it, yes?  Wait.  Did you know there was an election going on?  Really?  Yeah, in the United States, we're voting for a president this year.  Wait, should I have capitalized President?  Anyway, yeah, it's the current guy - Obama - & this guy Mitt Romney.  Yeah, Mitt.  I guess it's short for Mitten?  I don't really know.  Well, he does kind of resemble a Ken Doll, but maybe a Ken Doll in his late fifties, early sixties.  Yeah, ha ha, Barbie would have had lots of plastic surgery by then.  Oh well.  Ha ha.  It's all so funny.

I have no idea what any of this means.

Thursday, August 09, 2012

Calling All Dinosaurs

Hey, this may be late notice, but I am subbing WRFL's classic rock show this afternoon.  It's called the Belfry & it's uniformly excellent, so listening to me do it might be a bit of a let-down.  However, if you're around, it's from 4 to 6pm at 88.1 fm on the dial in Lexington & its surroundings, &/or it's online at WRFL's website.

To encourage you, here's a picture of an actual belfry:

Tuesday, August 07, 2012

The Subway Show!

I adore subways.  I wish I lived someplace where I could take a subway regularly.  I know they're loud & polluted & smelly.  I just like the idea of subways.  Well, commuter trains in general.  So I made a radio show to celebrate them!

You know how it goes: the show is waiting at the Self Help Radio station.  You'll find two lines there: one line goes to the first half of the show; the other line goes to the other half.  Song-destinations are below.

(part one)

"Subway" Sesame Street _Sesame Street: Signs!_
"Talking Subway" John Greenway _Talking Blues_
"On The Subway" The Last Poets _The Last Poets_

"Subway Joe" Joe Bataan with The Fulanos _King Of Latin Soul_
"The Underground Train" Lord Kitchener _London Is The Place For Me: Trinidadian Calypso In London_
"Circle Line" Rodney Allen _Happysad_
"Subway To The Beach" Furniture _Food, Sex & Paranoia_
"Subway Song" The Cure _Three Imaginary Boys_

"Don't Sleep In The Subway" Petula Clark _Music To Watch Girls By_
"Subway Train" New York Dolls _The New York Dolls_
"Down In The Subway" Soft Cell _Down In The Subway_

(part two)

"Subway Cutie" Melody Masters _Hot Harmony Groups 1932-1951 - That's The Rhythm, Vol. 1_
"Subway Blues" Mable Scott _1938-1950_

"Riding On The Subway" Jesse Malin _The Fine Art Of Self-Destruction_
"Man On the Tube" The Passions _Michael & Miranda_
"Down In The Tube Station At Midnight" The Jam _Greatest Hits_
"Waiting For The End Of The World" Elvis Costello _My Aim Is True_
"The Metro" Berlin _The Best Of Berlin 1979-1988_

"Downtown Train" Tom Waits _Rain Dogs_
"MTA" The Kingston Trio _Folk Song America - A 20th Century Revival_
"The Next Station Is: Shibuya" Torpedo Boyz _Cum On Feel The Boyz_

Sunday, August 05, 2012

Whither Subways?

How dangerous are subways?  According to this article (which is just about the New York subway system), "most of the deaths that occur in the subway are due to sickness, accident, or suicide."  The site does allow that there is "an occasional murder."

According to this site - which features pictures of subway crashes & other rail accidents, you have been warned - the Daegu subway in South Korea is "the world's most dangerous subway."  Here is an image of an arson in 2003 when some 150 people died:

More information at the site linked above.

I am getting this out of the way because tomorrow morning on Self Help Radio we celebrate subways (although there are some songs about scary subway experiences - but I won't be focusing on that!).  Please listen - it's from 7:30 to 9:00 am on 88.1 fm in Lexington & online at wrfl dot fm.  Archived later underground at the Self Help Radio website.  Trains run on time!  Don't miss it!