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Volume 9, Issue 2: Verbatim

Quotations on Humor and Life

Various Saints and Jokers and Saint-Jokers

It is pleasing to the dear God whenever thou rejoicest or laughest from the bottom of thy heart.

Martin Luther

On many questions and specially in view of the marriage bed, the Puritans were the indulgent party, . . . they were much more Chestertonian than their adversaries. The idea that a Puritan was a repressed and repressive person would have astonished Sir Thomas More and Luther about equally.

C.S. Lewis

I've got all the money I'll ever need--if I die by four o'clock.

Henny Youngman

Woman takes her being from man, man takes his well-being from woman.

Thomas Adams

It is unpardonable conceit not to laugh at your own jokes. Joking is undignified; that is why it is so good for one's soul. Do not fancy you can be a detached wit and avoid being a buffoon; you cannot. If you are the Court Jester you must be the Court Fool.

G.K. Chesterton

I think we should all treat each other like Christians. I will not, however, be responsible for the consequences.

George Charlin

A joke's a very serious thing.

Charles Churchill

One time the police stopped me for speeding. They said, "Don't you know the speed limit is fifty-five miles per hour?" I said, "Yeah, I know, but I wasn't going to be out that long."

Steven Wright

Human societies treasure laughter and whatever can produce it. Without laughter everyday living becomes drab and lifeless; life would seem hardly human at all. Likewise, a sense of humor is generally considered a person's most admirable attribute. Indeed, few people would be willing to admit that they are deficient in this quality.

Charles Gruner

A bum said to me, "I haven't eaten in three days." I said, "Force yourself."

Henny Youngman

You know what a comic character is, right? That guy sitting behind you at the baseball game who, after six or seven beers, feels he has a personal, adversarial relationship with the umpire or the manager or the visiting pitcher, and a divinely ordained right to share the intimacies of these relationships at the top of his lungs with everyone around him. This person is a comic character right up until the moment he spills a cold beer down your back. Then he's just a jerk.

John Vornhaus

Without humour you cannot run a sweetie-shop, let alone a nation.

John Buchan

Whatever happened to the good ol' days, when children worked in factories?

Emo Philips

The funniest thing about comedy is that you never know why people laugh. I know what makes them laugh but trying to get your hands on the why of it is like trying to pick an eel out of a tub of water.

W.C. Fields

There are those who, in their pride and their innocence, dedicate their careers to writing humorous pieces. Poor dears, the world is stacked against them from the start, for everybody in it has the right to look at their work and say, "I don't think that's funny."

Dorothy Parker

I have a serious investment problem. I have no money.

Melvin Helitzer

Religion is not a melancholy, the spirit of God is not a damper.

John Donne

A famous actor, Edmund Kean, on his deathbed, was reported to have said, "Dying is easy. Comedy is hard."

Melvin Helitzer

They asked John Glenn what he thought about just before his first capsule was shot into space, and he said: "I looked around me and suddenly realized that everything had been built by the lowest bidder."

Melvin Helitzer

A sour religion is the devil's religion.

John Wesley

I bought some batteries, but they weren't included. So I had to buy them again.

Steven Wright

What is funny about us is precisely that we take ourselves too seriously.

Ronald Niebuhr

The fact is that purification and austerity are even more necessary for the appreciation of life and laughter than for anything else. To let no bird fly past unnoticed, to spell the stones and weeds, to have the mind a storehouse of sunset, requires a discipline in pleasure and an education in gratitude.

G.K. Chesterton

The joy of heaven incarnates in the humor of earth.

Terry Linvall

The size of man's understanding might be justly measured by his mirth.

Samuel Johnson

The coarse joke proclaims that we have here an animal which finds its own animality either objectionable or funny. Unless there had been a quarrel between the spirit and the organism I do not see how this could be: it is the very mark of the two not being "at home" together. But it is very difficult to imagine such a state of affairs as original--to suppose a creature which from the very first was half shocked and half tickled to death at the mere fact of being the creature it is. I do not perceive that dogs see anything funny about being dogs: I suspect that angels see nothing funny about being angels.

C.S. Lewis

Humor is, by its nature, more truthful than factual.

P.J. O'Rourke

It happened that a fire broke out backstage in a theatre. The clown came out to inform the public. They thought it was just a jest and applauded. He repeated his warning; they shouted even louder. So I think the world will come to an end amid general applause from all the wits, who believe it is a joke.

Soren Kierkgaard

It is the heart that is not yet sure of its God that is afraid to laugh in His presence.

George MacDonald

Do not imagine that if you meet a really humble man he will be what most people call "humble" nowadays: he will not be a sort of greasy, smarmy person, who is always telling you that, of course, he is a nobody. Probably all you will think about him is that he seemed a cheerful, intelligent chap who took a real interest in what you said to him.

C.S. Lewis

Baptists are only funny underwater.

Neil Simon

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