Complex Extended Puns -- Real Groaners

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Table of Contents

The Last Nun

Outside a small Macedonian village close to the border between Greece and strife-torn Yugoslavia, a lone Orthodox nun keeps quiet watch over a silent convent. She is the last caretaker of a site of significant historical developments spanning more than 2,000 years. When Sister Maria Cyrilla of the Order of the Perpetual Vigil dies, the convent of St. Elias will be closed by the Eastern Orthodox Patriarch of Macedonia. However, that isn't likely to happen soon, as Sister Maria, 53, enjoys excellent health. By her own estimate, she walks 10 miles daily about the grounds of the convent, land which once served as a base for the army of Attila the Hun.

In more ancient times, a Greek temple to Eros, the god of love, occupied the hilltop site. Historians say that Attila took over the old temple in 439 A.D. and used it as a base for his marauding army.

The Huns are believed to have first collected and then destroyed a large collection of Greek legal writs at the site. It is believed that Attila wanted to study the Greek legal system and had the writs and other documents brought to the temple. Scholars differ on why he had the valuable documents destroyed - either because he was barely literate and couldn't read or because they provided evidence of democratic government that did not square with his own notion of rule by an all-powerful tyrant.

When the Greek Church took over the site in the 15th Century and the convent was built, church leaders ordered the pagan statue of Eros destroyed, so another ancient Greek treasure was lost. Today, there is only the lone sister, watching over the old Hun base, amidst the strife of war-torn Yugoslavia, and when she is no longer, the story will be over.

That's how it ends: No Huns, no writs, no Eros, and nun left on base.

During the French Revolution

During the French Revolution, the "common people" were intent on ridding themselves of all vestiges of the Royalty and nobility. The Reign of Terror ensued and all nobility was hunted down. Some were allowed to leave the country, however most were executed at the guillotine. One nobleman in particular had sent his family into hiding in hopes of saving them. Soon he was caught. The crowd searched in vain for his family, but they were well hidden. Threats were made but he always replied, "I'll never tell!". Finally the crowd dragged him to the guillotine and offered to let he and his family leave the country if he would only disclose their location. Again he replied "I'll never tell!". They dragged him up onto the platform next to the horrible machine and asked him again. Still he replied "I'll never tell!". They laid his neck across the cutting board and asked him once more. Again he replied "I'll never tell!". They slowly hoisted the blade and again asked for the location of his family. Weakly he replied " I'll never tell". They waited to see if his resolve would fail, he remained silent. Just as the executioner pulled the release and the blade began to fall the Count called out "Wait, I'll tell, I'll t....."

The moral to this story, don't hatchet your Count before he chickens!

-- Thanks to Frank Brown,

Sir Lancelot's Mission

King Arthur sends Sir Lancelot out on an important mission to deliver a message to the king of Spain. It is a long distance, and Lancelot looks in the Kingdom for a good horse to take him there. His own horse is sick, and all he can find is an old mare, but, since he has to leave quickly, he takes the mare.

About 3 days out of the Kingdom, Lancelot realizes his mistake. The horse gets tired and appears to be going lame. He finally makes it to a small village and gets to the Inn. He goes up to the Innkeeper and explains his problem. That is, he needs a good horse so that he can fulfill his mission to deliver the message for the king. The Innkeeper replies that this is only a small village, and most of the horses around are not up to the task. He is welcome to look around, however, and if he can find anything, he is certainly welcome to it.

Lancelot looks around the village, and true as the Innkeeper has said, no good horse is to be found. As Lancelot is about to give up, he comes across a stable boy carting some feed. He asks the stable boy if there is any beast of burden in the village that he can use to fulfill his mission. The stable boy thinks for a minute, and starts to reply no, but then says, go see if Old Mange in the barn can help you.

Lancelot goes over to the barn expecting to find a horse. What he finds is a very large dog: almost as large as a pony. The dog is a mess, however. It is mangy, parts of its fur are falling off, and it is full of fleas. Lancelot is desperate at this point, and he looks it over carefully. It does, however, appear to be strong enough to take him to Spain (which is only 3 days away at this point).

Lancelot goes back to the Innkeeper, and acknowledges that he cannot find a horse in the village that he can use. He says, however that this dog, Old Mange, might be able to take him most (if not all) of the way to his destination. The Innkeeper hears this, stiffens up, and says : Sir. I wouldn't send a Knight out on a dog like that.

-- Thanks to Steve Jacobson,

Farmer Jones and the Big Quake

On a bright and sunny morning in May, Farmer Jones went out to plow his fields. He led old Bessie, his plow horse, out of the barn and hitched her up to the plow. The aroma of newly plowed earth wafted behind him as he produced a ruler straight furrow across the field. Suddenly his reverie was broken as a strong earthquake struck. As the ground shook beneath his feet, he fell to his knees. His plow fell over almost on top of him, as did old Bessie. But, beyond the fence in the next field, the bull remained standing.

Farmer Jones stood, dusted himself off, and grabbed the reins to right old Bessie. He pulled the plow upright, hitched up the horse again and began to plow. Shaken somewhat by the strange experience, the furrow began to zig a little from side to side as Bessie pulled the plow blade through the fertile ground. After only a few seconds a strong aftershock rolled through the farm. Again it was strong enough to knock Farmer Jones from his feet, topple his plow, and with a loud protest, drive old Bessie to the ground. This time the farmer looked back across the field toward the house and noticed that the goats and cows had fallen over, too .... But, beyond the fence in the next field, the bull remained standing.

Shaken and puzzled, Farmer Jones picked himself up and dusted off his overalls. Righting the horse and plow, he quieted old Bessie as best he could. She seemed more rattled by all this that he was. As strong as the two earthquakes were, Farmer Jones could not understand how the bull remained standing. So he started toward the other field to see if he could find out what was going on with the bull. As he crossed the field, and climbed through the fence into the field where the bull stood, a very strong aftershock struck -- much worse than either of the preceding earthquakes -- putting him on the ground flat on his face. Looking behind himself he saw Old Bessie and the plow had fallen down again. Down toward the house the goats and cows had fallen down again. In fact, this aftershock was so strong that the chickens had fallen over as well. The front porch on the farmhouse had crashed down and the walls looked as though they would not last much longer. But, only a few feet away from him, the bull remained standing.

He picked himself up, dusted off, and without bothering to right either horse or plow, marched toward the bull. Shaken to the core, puzzled and angry, Farmer Jones shouted, demanding to know why everything on the farm had been knocked over by the earthquakes and the bull had remained on his feet. Much to Farmer Jones' astonishment, the bull replied, "We bulls wobble, but we don't fall down!"

--Thanks to Kyna & Gary Hendra,

The Doctor's Drink

It seems there was a friendly little bar right next to a medical training hospital in the big city. Many of the doctors and nurses would stop in there on their way home, after long shifts in the hospital. One day, a local college student named Gina, intent on earning book money for the next term, came into the bar looking for a job as an evening bartender. As it happened, one of the bartenders had just quit, providing the needed open position. The owner was quite happy to give her the position and began her training that evening.

As she was being briefed about the "regulars", the subject of one of the more unusual doctors came up. Every day, at the end of his shift, one particular Doctor Avery came in for a rather unusual drink. He always ordered a Walnut Daiquiri. A Walnut Daiquiri is a strange drink -- not the kind of fruity drink one would expect. It was thought the good doctor must have invented it for himself, finding some special pleasure in the taste of walnuts.

A few days later Doctor Avery arrived just as the new bartender, Gina, was going on duty. When queried as to his desired libation, as expected, the doctor ordered a Walnut Daiquiri. The bar tender set about making the daiquiri, and discovered to her horror that there were no walnuts to be found. She quickly searched behind the bar, the refrigerators and in the back room. Nothing! She was in a fix -- she wanted to keep Doctor Avery as a good customer, and didn't want him to complain to her boss. Thinking quickly, she searched once again for something to substitute. Finding another nut ... figuring that this was a weird drink to begin with, and after a long day, the doctor wouldn't notice, anyway.

Setting the drink before the doctor, she could see a certain relief come over the him, as at the end of a hard day, he anticipated the refreshment that awaited him. The doctor raised the glass to his lips, took a big swallow, and coughing and sputtering, demanded to know if she were attempting to poison him. "Young lady, exactly WHAT is this you have just given me?" he demanded. Putting on her best innocent face, Gina the new bartender replied, "Well, that's a Hickory Daiquiri, Doc!"

--Thanks to Kyna & Gary Hendra,

Yes Men

OK, you know that in Hollywood, every movie producer has his "Yes Man" whose job is to follow the producer around and say, "Yes, CB", "Right, CB" and so on. Well, one of these Yes Men got depressed, so down in fact that he was unable to function. So he consulted a psychiatrist. The psychiatrist quickly determined the problem, and told the Yes Man that he just had to find a release for his negative feelings, and say "No."

"But if I said 'no' I'd get fired!" The yes man protested.

The psychiatrist said, "Oh, I don't mean on the job, I mean go out to the Grand Canyon and find a ledge off the trail, and there you can yell 'NO!' to your heart's content and no one will be the wiser."

Well, the Yes Man decided to try it. He went to the Grand Canyon and found a spot off the trail, and stood there and very timidly said, "no." It felt good, so he tried it a little louder, "No." Even better! soon he was shouting "NO, NO, NO, NO, NO!!!!" at the top of his lungs and feeling great.

He went back to work a changed man, and said "Yes!" with all the proper enthusiam, because on the weekend he could escape to the Grand Canyon and say "NO!" Other Yes men decided to try this also, and soon every weekend the Grand Canyon was crammed with Yes Men shouting "NO!"

A new Yes Man came to Hollywood, and he too felt the need of such a release, but when he tried to find a ledge in the Grand Canyon, all of them seemed to be taken. He hunted and hunted, but everyplace he found was already taken by another Yes Man.

Finally he found a small ledge which had been overlooked because of its size. Thankfully he scurried out on it and stood there and said "No." It felt great! So he wound up and released an enormous "NO!" and in so doing lost his balance and fell to his death. Which just goes to prove that a little No Ledge can be a dangerous thing.

-- Thanks to Hugh R Jochn and Steven Andrew Wolfman,

Ft. Worth Zoo Finds Extroardinary Talent in Ordinary Gnu

Ft. Worth - The Ft. Worth Zoo today has an animal which may be the rival of Co-Co the gorilla. Maddie the Gnu was to be moved to her new home in the Zoo this morning, but until the Gnu's Pen could be readied, Richard Leak, the Zoo's African Fauna expert, advised leaving Maddie in the bathroom. The bathroom had been almost complete except for tiling the floor. This morning the floor was completely tiled.

Zoo officials insist that no one was in that bathroom all night except the wildebeast. If that is true, the Wildebeast managed to tile 350 sq. feet of public bathroom in one night.

"These animals have capabilities we simply cannot know," was Richard Leak's comment on the subject.

Leak also lent some insight on the circumstances of the animal's arrival: "[The Fort Worth Zoo] had recently been given a large donation to make 'real wildlife' accessible to the public, so I was asked to find ... perfectly average animals for the zoo. This was supposed to be an absolutely typical wildebeast."

The bathroom mentioned is a large public bathroom adjacent to the gnu's living area. The new marble tiling for which Maddie is purportedly responsible was described as "excellent, an incredible job" by the professional tiler who arrived today to do the job.

Both the new bathroom and the new animals are being funded by the same grant from Telco Corporation's president and CEO, Linda Skarst. Ms. Skarst is a wildlife activist and felt that exposure to real animals in their natural environments would encourage children to become comfortable with wild animals.

When asked if Maddie could still qualify as an average representative of her species after this incident, Ms. Skarst replied, "Oh, yes! This just proves that Maddie is ... a typical gnu and a tiler, too."

-- Thanks to Hugh R Jochn and Steven Andrew Wolfman,

Rabbi Liebner in the Valley of the Treads

On the topic of celestial guidance, Rabbi Liebner has something of an odd contribution...

The town of Treadville was small but prosperous and lay in a high valley surrounded by higher mountains. The Treads (for that is what they named themselves) were wealthy enough to love more than work and humble enough to make more than money. Little disturbed their peace until a late autumn night.

On that night, the Treads beheld a small but bright light gleaming from the top of a neighboring mountain. Curious in their ease, they soon decided to climb the mountain -- the highest of those around -- to discover the source of the light.

None arrived at the summit. At a point about halfway to the peak an extension of the mountain, seemless in the granite and shaped like an immense foot, lurched from the slope and hurled the luckless climbers from the slope. Strangely, few were harmed by the fall, but none reached the peak.

And so for years, decades, and then centuries the Treads wondered what could be the source of that radiant glow? Then, one day, one Rabbi Liebner entered the village and learned of the mystery of Tread Valley. The Rabbi was fascinated by the story and felt the touch of God in its weave. That night he watched the light and knew. He knew that he had been chosen to seek its source.

The Treads were not jealous of their mysteries; they invited the Rabbi to climb the peak the next day... and made all preparations for his inevitable fall. Thus, he set out.

That afternoon, Rabbi Liebner reached Foot's Fall, the point where the mountain made its wishes known..... and nothing happened. The Rabbi continued upwards to the cheers of the town; at sunset he reached the summit.

There, on the mountain's brow, he stumbled to a halt. Before him stood a brilliant temple bathed in celestial light, encircled be a holy sheen. Rabbi Liebner was awed. Finally, he summoned the strength to murmur a question and a prayer. "Oh Lord, thank you for this vision! But why have I been chosen to surmount this peak? Why not the good people of Treadville in the many years they have tried?"

And to his eternal joy, the Rabbi heard in a thunderous voice from heaven, "Silly Rabbi, kicks are for Treads."

The Mosquito

The other night my wife yelled from the bathroom that there was a strange bug flying around in there. She had just started to get her bath and get ready for bed. Sometimes she likes to burn scented candles while relaxing and this was one of those times. I came in and spotted a mosquito that was flitting around the light. It had been trapped in a spider/cob web and was still dangling a pice of web from it's body. This is what made it look so strange. Anyhow, I picked up a slipper and started to swat the thing. Well I missed as usual and asked my wife to hand me the fly swatter. I made one more swipe then yelled "never mind." I had contacted on the last swing and knocked the mosquito into the candle flame. There was a puff of smoke and the candle went out. She asked if I got it. I picked up a pair of tweezers and lifted the dead bug out of the melted wax and candle wick. As I held it up I said "Yeah...I waxed the little sucker."

--Thanks to Randy Crowe

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