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Category: Monologue Jokes

It’s Beginning to look a lot like COMEDY

I’ve started writing jokes again! Here’s what happened:

1) I was very sad.
2) I saw there was a Level 2 online stand-up class available for people with some experience.
3) It was 200 dollars! 200 DOLLARS! In COVID times! Can you imagine?!
4) I asked David if it was okay if I signed up for a $200 class, because I thought it would help force me to write jokes again.
5) He said “mhmm hm mm,” because he was looking at his phone and not paying attention.
6) I signed up for the class.
7) The three week class involved work-shopping your tight five. So I wrote some new jokes. I pulled in some old jokes. I laid out a concept to explore. I was rusty in the first class session. The second session was a 30 minute one-on-one with the instructor. The third session you presented your updated tight five. I pulled together a pretty solid chunk of jokes that came full circle. The instructor said, “Wow you took a concept and fleshed out a whole joke. Amazing, this is why I love teaching this class.” I felt really good about my set. My classmates liked it! Of course they did, classes are so supportive. I love classes. Since then, I’ve cleaned up the jokes further! Every day I’ve made updates!

Last night, I presented my tight five to my comedy group’s online workshop, under the guise of asking for feedback.

Here’s what Tammy said:

“Have you timed this? It feels longer than five minutes.”


I was like, “Okay well I’m thinking the audience is going to be so engaged, rolling over with laughter, that the host can’t bear to pull me off and will wave me on for ANOTHER five.”

Tammy looked away from her monitor. “You said it was a tight five. Those are five minutes.”

Other people weighed in on feedback for different parts. Every time I said, “I could cut this,” someone would say, “I liked that part, what about cutting ___.” This feedback just confirmed my suspicions that my set is very, very good.

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On Making Monologue Jokes

This week I’ve been learning about monologue jokes, and they’re not easy.

For example, here are some news headlines from today:

a) David Bowie died on Sunday, two days after his 69th birthday.

b) Residents of Madaya and other Syrian towns are dying of starvation because of the civil war.

c) Marissa Mayer is going to lay off over 1000 Yahoo employees.

Immediately, I have to eliminate items 1 and 2 from the drawing board, because they’re off limits. According to Joe Toplyn’s Comedy Writing for Late-Night TV you should steer clear of topics that audiences are not ready to laugh at. For David Bowie, it’s too soon, and for the Syrian Civil War, it’s too tragic and too soon. I say “too soon” because after enough time passes, almost everything becomes open season for joke-fodder.

So that leaves c) Marissa Mayer is going to lay off over 1000 employees.  This is also upsetting, especially for the employees who have to support themselves and their families, but they’re going to make it, and I, I can help them through these difficult times by writing a joke about it. I give and I give.

Associations with Yahoo

Old internet technology
Google competitor
Used to dominate email
Ali-Baba stakeholder
Yahoo yodel

Associations with Marissa Mayer

New mother of twins
Hard-working CEO
Former google employee
Likes fashion

Associations with Silicon Valley

Inflated salaries
Young guys

Associations with Layoffs

Denying layoffs
Severance packages
Brain drain
Boards of Directors

So here are some attempts to make this devastating situation for several employees humorous:

Have you heard about this? This spring, over 1000 Yahoo employees are going to be laid off. Yahoo employees picked up the story from Google News.

(So bad. SO bad.)

Have you heard about this? This spring, over 1000 Yahoo employees are going to be laid off. When asked if they read about this on Yahoo News, employees replied, “There’s a Yahoo News?”

(Maybe better.)

Internet giant Yahoo will be laying off over 1000 employees this spring. So software engineers, designers, and yodelers are back on the job market.

(This is the best so far.)

I might just write a stand-up bit that is all monologues and perform it at an open-mic. The audience might be like, “WTF is this,” and after I’m done, I will be like, “Hahaha! We have a great show planned for you tonight! Up next, a slovenly white guy! Stay with us!” And then I’ll push play on a tape recorder and walk off the stage to upbeat jazz music.



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