I find the punchlines for my limericks in a lot of different places. My friends supply most of them. But current events and television provide many opportunities to hear something that just begs to become a limerick. This ditty came from TV.
I was watching JLTV (Jewish Living TV). They were showing a program of “classic” Jewish comedians and I turned it on in the middle of an old Borscht Belt routine being performed by a comic I didn’t recognize. He was doing his shtick with a “Jewish” accent, pronouncing his “s’s” like “sh” and his “w’s” like “v.” He looked familiar, but how could he not? He kind of looked like me and a whole lot of other Jewish guys I know – chiseled ethnic features (big nose and bushy eyebrows) and a chrome dome (bald).
He was telling a joke about one of my favorite subjects, Senior Sex, and I was riveted. When he got to the punchline, I knew that I had to turn the joke into a limerick. Hey, goniffing is a time honored tradition among Jewish comedians. And it led to this……
Senior Sex can be daunting when new,
So she wondered what she’d have to do.
She said, “Be honest with me.”
He replied, “Infrequently.”
And she asked, “Is that one word or two?”
I have done computer dating, very successfully, I might say. I married two women I met on Match and I have made several lasting friendships. I am intrigued with how people will describe themselves to make themselves attractive to the type of person they are hoping to meet, and also how they describe the person they are trying to meet. Everyone is looking for some kind of personal niche which sets them apart. I have read some very creative and well written profiles where I have had to send a message to the writer if for no other reason than to compliment them on a job well done. As for my own profile, what do you think? A few goofy limericks and a four liner – no misrepresention.
But misrepresentation and delusion run rampant on computer dating sites. Certainly, people are entitled to hold themselves in high esteem. If you don’t think that you are some kind of a grand prize for a lucky winner, then you might end up settling for a booby prize. Still, a little honesty with the person in the mirror goes a long way towards finding a match that is well suited for you.
One of the keywords used in self-description is “Class.” The Urban Dictionary defines it as “A person who is poised, graceful, mature, or exudes any of these qualities in dress, mannerism, language, and everyday life. Possesses excellent self-control, is gentle, soothing, and not offensive.” I can see how a woman would want to describe herself as being classy or having class. But class is something you have to see for yourself and I would question the humility of someone who advertised having class, as I think it is not something that a person with class would do. And that led to this.
My definition of a woman with class
A gal without a stick up her ass.
But she’ll like a good poking
And I’ll know if she’s joking
When she’s ripping me with her merciless sass!
I went to college in the Bible Belt. It was quite a culture shock from the Jewish community I grew up in. Down there, people were worried about going to Hell. Where I came from, people were more concerned about how much they were going to have to pledge to the “building fund” to air condition the place after they got there.
We took dancing lessons when we were thirteen so we could dance at Bar and Bat Mitzvahs, which are a big part of our religious culture. There are some fundamental Christian churches that are opposed to dancing as it could lead to the unraveling of their moral fiber. I think they need to eat more fiber as it will cure an internal problem they seem to be having.
I was remembering a joke going around campus back in the day and it led to this…..
It’s a mortal sin that you’re chancing
With trip the light fantastic romancing.
A strict religious education
It just might lead to dancing!
I am resisting aging with all my might. I’m holding up mentally. Physically is another story. I have always remained fit since my high school days. I still like working out and playing sports. That part of physically is fine. It’s the bald, gray, bags under my eyes, have to take a pill to piss part of physically that is messing with me.
I start out every day by walking into the bathroom, looking in the mirror, screaming and going about my business. It’s been a daily ritual for a long time. However, I recently made the mistake of moving in for a closer examination. It wasn’t pretty. I saw the dreaded “O” word staring back at me.
The day before this self observation took place, I stopped at a fast food joint for a cup of coffee. I got a nice senior discount…without asking for it. That led to the mirror which led to this –
It seems I’m approaching the geriatric stage
And how fast I’m going has been hard to gauge.
Oy, even at my best
I fail the mirror test…
It’s senior price now without asking my age!
I have the bug again. I get it once a year, but it lasts 365 days. It never really goes away. I just find a way to put it into remission most of the time. Call it a reality check and a wife who, while she encourages my creative activities, keeps reminding me that I am a long way from getting paid for them and I need to focus on the activities that have a pay day involved. I did that in October. I married her.
I have been having a ball writing this limerick blog. Since I post on some social networking sites to share my blog, I have been trying to use an introduction to set up and “hide” the jokes which are the limericks, especially when they are “inappropriate” subjects, which happen to be the most popular, of course. My daughter rips me regularly for that stuff but then she will tell me that it is funny. OK. By writing intros, I have been writing set ups for punch lines which is how you write jokes. The stand up formula is not rocket science. It is a laugh line every ten seconds and solid laugh tags. I have been writing with that formula all my life as I have been a stand up wannabe all my life.
I am also an old college actor who has experienced the fun and excitement of going up on stage and having the lights hit you in the face and the thrill of being in front of an audience. That thrill is even better when you can make people laugh at something you wrote and performed with the right timing and delivery. Talk about making your heart race. It is exhilarating. And once a year, I go through a little withdrawal and it is an easy fix. I have been using a lot of the same material for seventeen years…because it is tested and always works. Now I have a lot of new material from the limerick blog so I wrote some new formula jokes/material and incorporated four limericks to give my set a uniqueness that will be much different than kids up their rambling and tossing out f-bombs. I use the “f” word twice but for effect and both times it is in exact quotes from my wife directed at me. The funny thing is that I have not gone to the “inappropriate” limerick material well yet and I know that stuff will work for the younger audiences. If I keep going with it a little longer this time, I can go there. Usually it is three or four open mics and I get bored. Not with being up there. The sign up and sit there for several hours listening to more bad than good waiting to go up is tough.. I am not out there trying to break through and I am not there to pay dues. I am too old for that. I am there mostly for my own self amusement. Now if something crazy were to happen and I could sense I was getting some traction, well, that might change things. After all, I did graduate from Beachwood High School with some incredibly successful people in the entertainment business and I have always had confidence from knowing I come from that breeding ground. I also know that I am a good writer and I can do it if I had some motivation to stick with it. One thing for sure, when asked about my stand up career, my answer is always the same, “I ain’t dead yet.”
And it led to this:
My shtick has a unique alte cocker niche,
And my writing is clever and never kitsch.
When I get the bug
To be silly and mug,
I have to scratch my stand up itch!
Most of my limericks are inspired by a challenge. Someone tosses me a phrase or a word and challenges me to come up with a limerick. Sometimes it is not a direct request; I hear something that sounds like a punch line to a limerick and gears start grinding.
Here’s an example. My wife, Arleen (yes, for those of you that know me from my youth, as hard as it is to believe, I am married to a woman named Arleen – different spelling!) likes to utz me and call me “precious”. Here is what came from that:
Making me crazy is his obsession
And he’s driving me to manic depression
But come to think of it,
My trophy idiot
Is still my most precious possession!