Friday humour - September 29, 2000

     From Tony at Bluehaze:

     And there are some more Olympic moments this week (MPEGs ... further
     on) to keep the old Olympic spirit alight - as well as some other mixed
     visuals for your end-of-week amusement.

     But first up, as usual - here's some textual material - beginning with
     this contribution from Rosalie Louey here at CSIRO Minerals:

                            PSYCHIATRY AND PROCTOLOGY

Two doctors opened offices in a small town and put up a sign reading "Dr. Smith
and Dr. Jones, Psychiatry and Proctology".

The town's fathers were not too happy with that sign, so they changed it to
"Hysterias and Posteriors".

This was not acceptable either, so they changed the sign to "Schizoids and

No go, so they tried "Catatonics and High Colonics".

Thumbs down again, so they tried "Manic-depressives and Anal-retentives."
Still not good, so they tried "Minds and Behinds".

Unacceptable again, so they tried "Lost Souls and A-- holes".  Still no go.

Nor did "Analysis and Anal Cysts", "Queers and Rears", "Nuts and Butts",

"Freaks and Cheeks" or "Loons and Moons" work either, so they finally
settled on "Dr. Smith and Dr. Jones, Odds and Ends."

       Maria the H is still contributing plenty of material too - here's
       a very recent one:

                            TRUTH IS STANGER THAN ...

   (September 2000, Aspatria, USA)

"This whole story has been blown out of proportion," said a spokeswoman for
the Over & Sons Garage. "It is true that a man walked onto our forecourt in
the Market Place with a fox under his arm last week, pushed the compressed
air nozzle into its rectum, popped 20p in the slot, and pumped it until
it exploded.  But what the reports fail to mention is that the animal was
already dead."

"All that really happened was that an amateur taxidermist had brought the
dead fox in and asked if he could pump some air between the fur and the skin
to loosen the pelt.  He just overdid it a bit, then fled in embarrassment."

There were animal parts scattered all over the forecourt, and a cluster of
shocked and horrified people.

"The garage has been under siege for several days following a report calling
the act 'sick and disgusting.'"  Animal rights activists have been calling the
station and threatening reprisals. "Nobody will work here alone any more."
Its hard enough to hold a living fox, let alone insert an airline up its
rectum, I should imagine".

Police confirmed that they had identified the taxidermist, and are convinced
that no criminal act has taken place.  However, they did warn the fox-stuffer
about the advisability of inflating animals in public places.


     Ian XXXX posted this next piece a month or so back - together with this
     opening comment:

     "While rummaging through old files on my eunuch's machine I found this
     which I saved a few years ago from sci.skeptic - at the time there was
     a debate going on about life after death.  Someone suggested it might
     be worthwhile consulting the dead as they were directly concerned with
     the issue.  Perhaps for CSIRO use it should be put into an organisational
     context so I have attempted to do this.

     Perhaps the psychological tests outlined herein could be incorporated
     into the PPE process.  I note that actually being alive is not one of our
     key competencies.  If an objective test for being alive was included in
     the PPE process we might be able to include this in the next round of
     enterprise bargaining!  Surely the development of appropriate reward
     scales and career paths for both living and dead staff would lead to
     productivity gains."

     Enjoy ...

                               LIFE AFTER DEATH?

What kind of neuroscientific evidence is there for the extinction of the
personality at death?  How might the hypothesis that the personality is
extinguished at death be definitively falsified?

Hey, have you ever TALKED to a dead person?  I mean, those guys are *lousy*

The dead have long received insufficient attention from mental health
professionals.  A literature review reveals no psychologists or psychiatrists
who specialise in dead patients, no organisations of professionals treating
the dead, and prohibition of third-party reimbursements for services to
dead individuals .. The lack of a lively advocacy group for dead consumers
is problematic.

The moribund status of this field persists despite evidence that the dead
constitute a fast-growing segment of the population ...  The current number of
dead Americans exceeds that at any time in our nation's history (Mecklenberg,
1985).  Death has figured prominently in the lives and careers of many noted
personalities such as Elisabeth Kubler-Ross (who is fascinated by death),
Ronald Reagan (who seems dead), and Shirley MacLaine (who used to be dead).
The great figures in the history of psychology--men like Carl Jung, Alfred
Adler, and Sigmund Freud himself -- actually *are* dead ...

 ... The present study addresses the lack of rigorous research regarding
projective testing of the dead.  Specifically, this study utilised empirically
derived Rorschach interpretive hypotheses to evaluate dead patients.


"Subjects were drawn from the emergency room of a public hospital.  Relatives
of each dead person to enter this area were asked to authorise participation
of their loved one in the study.  It should be noted that `dead rights' are
often ignored.  The fact that some individuals cannot stand up for themselves
does not give license to disregard their value as persons.  The first 20
dead individuals whose participation was authorised constituted the `dead'
group ...   Twenty non-dead adults were chosen at the same site to constitute
a control group.


"Initial discrimination of the dead from non-dead was accomplished on an
intuitive basis.  The Budd Morbidity Inventory (BMI) (Budd, 1986) was
subsequently administered to all subjects, and the BMI classification was
compared with initial group assignment.  Interestingly, informal
classification was generally accurate, with only three `false negatives.'
Three subjects initially classified as non-dead (two medical residents and
a hospital administrator) proved to be dead on administration of the BMI ...


"Dead and non-dead subjects were found to differ on many variables ...

The first cluster, `Oversimplification,' reflects investment of cognitive
effort in this projective task.  These variables represent the degree to which
the subject attempts to `make sense of' his stimulus field ...  All means
for the dead subjects equalled zero, suggesting a passive disinterest in
one's surroundings.  The dead subjects appear to have withdrawn from the
richly interwoven process of assimilation and accommodation so vital to human
adaptation.  This finding dovetails nicely with the oft-cited observation
that the dead seem oddly under-involved with their surroundings."

"The second cluster, `Lack of Felt Needs for Interpersonal Closeness' addresses
interpersonal withdrawal on the part of the dead.  The data show clearly
that non-dead subjects actively experience such need states and manifest an
interest in people.  Conversely, the Rorschach records of dead subjects are
almost devoid of such indicators.  Case reports (cf. Menahem, 1984) indeed
suggest that a lack of interpersonal responsiveness is an attribute of dead
patients that may impede traditional forms of intervention."

"The third cluster, `Richness of Internal Experience,' was defined in order
to encapsulate findings on a number of traditional variables.  In brief,
dead subjects utilised very few response determinants and restricted their
resposnes to a minimal number of content categories.  One may tentatively
suggest that the internal life of the dead is characterised by a rather bleak
sameness and emptiness."

   [Table 1, "Rorschach Scores for Dead and Non-Dead Subjects," omitted here]

"The fourth variable, total number of responses ... is illustrative of the
respondents' (or, in the case of our dead subjects, non-respondents') typical
response style ...  For the purposes of this study, it is more profitable
to think in terms of `rejections'--that is, the number of cards to which the
subject *refused* to offer at least one response.  Non-dead subjects averaged
0.0 (out of a maximum possible of 10.0) rejections per protocol, while dead
subjects provided an average of 10.0.  High frequency of rejections has been
associated with depression, defensiveness, or limited cognitive ability.
Other aspects of dead subjects' protocols appear to rule out depression; for
example, our dead subjects achieved a mean score of 0 on the Exner depression
index ..."

"Cognitive limitations cannot be ruled out in the current study.  In fact,
previous research (Goldman, 1987) has suggested that cognitive impairment
may be a cardinal feature of death ...  Whatever the underlying psychology,
our data clearly indicate that a generally low rate of behaviour--at least in
unfamiliar, ambiguous situations--is an important characteristic of the dead."

" ... High scores on [the final variable, `Cognitive Rigidity'] are associated
with thought disorders, suggesting an intriguing absence of schizotypal
qualities among the dead ...   However, the very low mean ... of our dead
subjects appears to reflect rigorous adherence to standard modes of thinking.
This rigid perfectionism, or inability to `loosen up,' is striking in view of
the uncanny frequency of the adjective `stiff' in informal characterisations
of dead individuals ..."

"These findings are impressive in their `goodness of fit' with intuitive
impressions of the dead.  One can easily recognise ... many factors that make
interactions with the dead so frustrating.  Moreover, these data suggest a
possible model (albeit a speculative one) for understanding the psychology
of the dead.  Specifically, *death may represent an effort to adapt to
problematic circumstances*."

"All the factors cited above are common when individuals are confronted with
debilitating stressors that overwhelm other coping strategies.  Thus, death
may be an end-state homeostasis following the failure of numerous adaptation
efforts.  The `dead' form of adaptation, viewed in this way, is a uniquely
successful (though costly) mode of adaptation, which eliminates or moderates
discomfort when other means of adaptation have been exhausted ..."

"Seen in this light, death -- with its associated features of chronicity
and relative intractability -- may be regarded as a personality disorder.
Alternatively, from a learning perspective, death may be an operant non-response
akin to learned helplessness.  `Learned deadness' is a possible descriptor."

"Systematic investigation of this hypothesis remains a task for the future.
However, a brief biographical data sheet, completed by each subject (or
subject's next-of-kin), provided some supporting evidence.  One-hundred
percent of our dead subjects had suffered a major trauma shortly before data
collection ...  Such events might certainly overwhelm the coping mechanisms
of most individuals.  Only 10% of non-dead subjects had experienced such
traumatic incidents.  This finding suggests an important direction for future
research ...."

(Excerpted from "Rorschach Assessment of the `Non-Living': Hardly a Dead
Subject," by Edward C. Budd, Ph.D., Journal of Polymorphous Perversity 9:1,
1992, pp. 12-16.)

(originally posted by Judy Stein)

      Now for the pics.  First few are courtesy of the QCAT (Queensland Centre
      for Advanced Technology) humour list (thanks Rod).  And thanks also to
      Steve over Digitronics for dropping the larger ones onto his server as
      usual (bluehaze is still running on its slow old line, I'm afraid):

      From QCAT:

    Why diving has never taken off in arid countries: Click here
    Ouch: Click here
    An improved ATM (via bluehaze, so about 35 seconds to load): Click here

      David McCallum forwarded on some Olympic moments as well:

    Gold: Click here
    Silver: Click here
    Bronze: Click here

      And for those who like to grease their way to the top, Maria the Harding
      forwarded this one:

    A present for your boss: Click here

      Now - as we move back to the ASCII stuff, there's this rather short
      contribution from Cr Mad in the UK (who prefaced it with "This is a
      dialect/regional Brit joke"):

Teenagers in the British Midlands are injecting the drug "Ecstasy" directly
into the mouth.

It is known as ...

Yes ...

   ... wait for it ...


       And over to Illinois for this one from Nestor (ANL) Zaluzec ...

A man is driving down a country road, when he spots a farmer standing in
the middle of a huge field of grass.  He pulls the car over to the side of
the road and notices that the farmer is just standing there, doing nothing,
looking at nothing.

The man gets out of the car, walks all the way out to the farmer and asks him,
"Ah excuse me mister, but what are you doing?"

The farmer replies, "I'm trying to win a Nobel Prize."

"How?" asks the man, puzzled.

"Well, I heard they give the Nobel Prize to people who are out standing in
their field."

       And here's a couple from Sarah Buckler that have been waiting
       patiently in the in-box for a little while:

On their way to a justice of the peace to get married, a couple had a fatal
car accident.  The couple found themselves sitting outside Heaven's Gate
waiting on St.  Peter to do an intake.  While waiting, they wondered if they
could possibly get married in Heaven.  St Peter finally showed up and they
asked him.

St.  Peter said, "I don't know, this is the first time anyone has asked.
"Let me go find out." and he left.  The couple sat and waited for an
answer...for a couple of months...  and they began to wonder if they really
should get married in Heaven, what with the eternal aspect of it all.

"What if it doesn't work?" they wondered, "Are we stuck together forever?"

St.  Peter returned after yet another month, looking somewhat bedraggled.
"Yes," he informed the couple, "you can get married in Heaven." "Great,"
said the couple, "but what if things don't work out?  Could we also get a
divorce in Heaven?"

St.  Peter, red-faced, slammed his clipboard onto the ground.

"What's wrong?", asked the frightened couple.

"COME ON!"  St.  Peter shouted, "It took me three months to find a priest up
here!  Do you have any idea how long it will take me to find a lawyer?"

   ... and ...


Several years ago, I returned home from a trip just when a storm hit, with
crashing thunder and severe lightning.  As I came into my bedroom about 2 a.m.,
I found my two children in bed with my wife, Karey, apparently scared by the
loud storm.  I resigned myself to sleep in the guest bedroom that night.

The next day, I talked to the children, and explained that it was O.K. to
sleep with Mum when the storm was bad, but when I was expected home, please
don't sleep with Mum that night.  They said OK.

After my next trip several weeks later, Karey and the children picked me up in
the terminal at the appointed time.  Since the plane was late, everyone had
come into the terminal to wait for my plane's arrival, along with hundreds
of other folks waiting for their arriving passengers.  As I entered the
waiting area, my son saw me, and came running shouting, "Hi, Dad!  I've got
some good news!"  As I waved back, I said loudly, "What's the good news?"
"Nobody slept with Mummy while you were away this time!" Alex shouted.

The airport became very quiet, as everyone in the waiting area looked at
Alex, then turned to me, and then searched the rest of the area to see if
they could figure out exactly who his Mum was.

      Then there was this one from Steve [redacted] (passed on via Dad):

Man who run in front of car get tired

Man who run behind car get exhausted

Man with hand in pocket feel cocky all day

Foolish man give wife grand piano, wise man give wife upright organ

Man who walk through airport turnstile sideways going to Bangkok

Man with one chopstick go hungry

Man who scratch ass should not bite fingernails

Man who eat many prunes get good run for money

Baseball is wrong: man with four balls cannot walk

Panties not best thing on earth but next to best thing on earth

War does not determine who is right, war determine who is left

Wife put husband in doghouse soon find him in cat house

Man who fight with wife all day get no piece at night

It take many nails to build crib, but one screw to fill it

Man who drive like hell, bound to get there

Man who stand on toilet is high on pot

Man who live in glass house should change clothes in basement

Man who fish in other man's well often catch crabs

Man who fart in church sit in own pew

Crowded elevator smell different to midget

Man who masturbates come in handy

Virginity like bubble - one prick, all gone

        Maria Harding (as I mentioned a cupla weeks ago) has been passing
        on material prodigiously - so here's a couple from her:

John went to his friend's house unannounced, and he wanted to spend the
night.  His friend was sorry that he could not offer him a whole room, so he
said, "You can sleep on the floor in the living room, or you can sleep in
the room with Baby."

John said that he would prefer the floor.

The next morning he went to the bathroom, and there he met a gorgeous young
blonde. "Hi," he said, "Who are you?"

"Hi, I'm Baby!  Who are you?"

"I'm stupid," he said.

  ... and ...

Eight year-old little Mary and her mother are walking through the mall together
one day.

"Mummy," says little Mary, "how old are you?"

"Darling, you should never ask a woman what her age is."

"Why not?" demands the child.

"Well, that is something you will understand one day when you're grown-up."

"Mummy," asks Mary again, "how much do you weigh?"

"Never mind." answers the mother.

"Why can't you tell me?"

"Because grown-ups never talk about how much they weigh.  This is something
you will learn and understand someday."

"Mummy," insists the child, "can you tell me why you and Daddy got divorced?"

"Darling," responds the mother in exasperation, "that's something still very
painful for Mummy, and I really just can't talk about it now."

A few days later, Little Mary recounts this conversation to a friend at school,
who explains how to overcome these problems:

"All you have to do is get your mother's driver's license.  It has all the
information about any grown-up you want on it.  You just read it like a report
card and it'll give you anything you need."

Little Mary does as her friend recommended.  That night she sneaks into her
mother's room while her mum was cooking dinner.  She rummages through her
purse and finds the drivers license.

After examining it carefully she walks up to her mother and says, "I know
how old you are!  You're 35!"

The mother is very surprised.

"And, I know how much you weigh.  You weigh 136 pounds, right?"

The mother is shocked!

"And, I know why you and Daddy got a divorce."

The mother, dumbfounded asked, "Why?"

"Because you got an F in sex!"

       And to round out the week - this one from an anonymous lady
       contributor just up the hallway here at CSIRO:

Two couples were playing cards.  Eric accidentally dropped some cards on the
floor.  When he bent down under the table to pick them up, he noticed that
Dave's wife, Sandy, was not wearing any underwear!  Shocked by, this, Eric
hit his head on the table and emerged red-faced.

Later when Eric went to the kitchen to get some refreshments, Sandy followed
him and asked, "Well, did you see anything under the table that you liked?"

Eric admitted, "Err ... yes, I did."

She said "You can have it - but it will cost you $100."

After a minute or two, Eric indicates that he is interested.  She tells him
that since Dave works Friday afternoons and Eric doesn't, that Eric should
come to their house around 2:00 PM on Friday.

Friday came and Eric went to her house at 2:00 PM.  After paying her the $100,
they went to the bedroom, had great sex for a few hours, and then Eric left.

Then Dave came home about 6:00 PM and asked his wife, "Did Eric come by this

Totally shocked, Sandy replied, "Yes ... he did stop by .. for a few minutes."

Next Dave asked, "Did Eric give you $100?"

Sandy thought, "(Oh hell, he knows)".  Reluctantly, she admitted, "Yes ...
he did give me $100."

"Good," Dave said. "Eric came by the office this morning and borrowed the $100
from me and said that he'd stop by our house on his way home and pay me back.
It's *so good* to have a friend you can trust."
[ End Friday humour ]

 Previous (September 22, 2000)  Index Next (October 06, 2000)