Sit Down Comedy … August 23rd, 2019

Jonathots Daily Blog

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Sit Down Comedy

Carefully selecting the pen name Barton Marshall, he had just received the opportunity to pursue an article for Flog Blog, International: “No more than 5,000 words—a nickel a word (edited).”

He was to do a feature story on a group of young citizens meeting outside San Francisco, California, who referred to themselves as assholics.

He was certainly intrigued. He made some calls and set up a time to come and be “a fly on the wall” at one of their joinings, and interview some of the participants after snacks.

The traffic on the freeway was so heavy that he arrived fifteen minutes late—thinking he was going to make a horrible first impression—only to discover that he was the second person to arrive, and that the folks trickled in at their own whim.

About forty-five minutes later, when there seemed to be a quorum of twenty-five or thirty people, mostly male, the meeting was brought to as much order as was able to be achieved without a gavel.

A young fellow stood to his feet and said, “My name is Henry and I’m an assholic.”

The whole room burst into laughter, shouting. “Ho, Henry!”

He continued. “I’ve spent the better part of my younger years trying to tolerate the bitter taste in my mouth from being forced to expel thank you’s and vomit excuse me’s.”

(Uproarious laughter.)

He pushed on. “Unlike the alcoholics, we are not anonymous. We are proud. For us it is not one day at a time, but rather, the glory of one insult at a time. I have no need to search for a higher power, for no one is higher than me. And though it’s taken me time, I have finally learned how to trample on the weak, while trumping the losers.

“It began one day on a bus—one of those city buses teeming with the wretched refuse. You know what I mean. The bus was full, and I was tired, when a pregnant lady—very pregnant; obtusely large, gross in magnitude…”

(With each insult the laughter increased.)

“Well, she got on the bus and there was no place to sit. My retarded inclination was to stand up and give her my seat. You know what the problem with that is? Then I don’t have a goddamn seat! I did what everybody else did. I stared into my phone and let the prego stand, just glancing over every once in a while to watch her ankles swell. After that first encounter—that glorious elixir—I began cutting in line at concerts, grocery stores and even bravely did it at the DMV.”

(Everybody was hooting and hollering.)

“Nowadays my morning commute is spent counting how many fingers I give to people in traffic en route to my worthless job, where a bunch of no-good foreign workers struggle to keep up with my exceptional, beautiful American ass.”

(Applause, applause, applause.)

For a moment, Barton thought it was merely an impromptu comedy troupe, meeting with a different weekly theme—this week being rudeness. But when Jack, Brian, Sandy and even Sue followed suit, with wild tales and vicious epithets against humanity, it became obvious that the assholics had actually discovered a perfect name.

They seemed to be intoxicated on cruelty and drunk on self-confidence, which was producing a slur against everything and everyone in sight.

There was mocking of the straight line and cursing those heretics who had escaped the club—going out into society with their anemic apologies, detoxing on civility and swearing that the key to escaping assholic is “one thought at a time.”

The meeting rolled on and rolled on, for nearly an hour, until the members began to be so critical of each other that it nearly broke out in a fight. Sensing danger, Barton left the room and climbed into his car, went home and sat behind his computer and typed his article, which he entitled, “Assholic Abominabus.”

He finished it off, put it through word count and discovered it was 3,823 words. One more read-through, a couple of quick changes and he sent it off to Flog Blog, International.

Five days later a note came back, reading, “Although the writing was passable, we felt that your title lacked impartiality. We asked you to write an article about the club—not a review. Better luck next time.”

Barton Marshall sat back in his chair and thought about what he had learned. He considered reacting to the rejection with the same acidity as the assholics. How comforting it would be, for a moment, to be pissed at the whole world and convinced that all the people at Flog Blog were pedophiles.

Yet all that ferocious fussiness would not grant him an opportunity for publication nor a few dollars for his bank account.

So Mertland Michaels sent out a query to a magazine which was looking for someone to write a feature story on the decline of interest in squirrels.

 

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Dear Man/Dear Woman: A Noteworthy Conversation … October 1st, 2016

 Jonathots Daily Blog

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Dear Man Dear Woman

Woman: I’ve decided to write a blog.

 

Man: Oh, really? Well, I’ll read it.

 

Woman: You don’t even know what I’m gonna write about.

 

Man: I still can be supportive.

 

Woman: That’s my point. I’m going to write about the fact that minorities in this country will not receive the respect they desire until they learn how to give equality and honor to women.

 

Man: Wow. That’s strong.

 

Woman: It probably is. And like most strong ideas, it certainly needs to be tempered by reason. But I would rather start off with a bold statement and trim it back than take a trimmed statement and say it boldly.

 

Man: I suppose. But when you say minorities, what are you talking about?

 

Woman: Well, let’s say Blacks, Latinos and Muslims. Jesus made an important statement. He declared that “the measure we put out to other people will be measured back to us.”

 

Man: That he did. So what you’re saying is that you believe the Black, Latino and Muslim communities fail to give women the status they deserve, and therefore end up suffering themselves.

 

Woman: Exactly. Even though there are many strong humans who are women in the Black and Latino communities, there is still an underlying message that to some degree, women are subordinate.

 

Man: I notice you left out the Muslims.

 

Woman: I didn’t leave them out–but in the Muslim community, it is even more pronounced that women are supposed to take a role rather than having an equal place.

 

Man: What do you mean by “taking a role?”

 

Woman: I’ll give you an example. During the Victorian era, it was considered that women would stay in the home and men would do the work–breadwinner, as it were. Simultaneously, in the world we were struggling with prejudice against immigrants and also the evil and indignity of slavery. So because we did not know how to treat women, the other aspects of human interaction were also stalled.

 

Man: I can see your point, but you certainly know that the Black, Latino and Muslim communities will cite many examples where the females in their cultures are revered.

 

Woman: There’s a difference between being equal and being revered. Matter of fact, you can revere someone so you don’t have to give them a voice. You can say, “Doesn’t she make a great mother? Isn’t she a wonderful cook? What would we do without her organizational skills?” But you’re still withholding her God-given privilege of even footing.

 

Man: I see that. But I still think you’re going to meet a lot of resistance from these communities with your blog.

 

Woman: As well I should. Making a statement is not establishing a truth. The truth is a quest that is fulfilled after we’re confronted with many statements.

 

Man: So what do you think they should do in these communities?

 

Woman: Question themselves. It’s the very best we can ask of anyone. Stop being so sure you have your own natural order that works, and instead, realize that women are more than “baby mamas,” spitfires and humans who have to wear head coverings to establish their submission.

 

Man: Do you think that’s even possible?

 

Woman: If you had told a man in 1874 that a woman would be on her way to the polls to vote for Hillary Clinton, he would have called you a ridiculous liar.

 

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Jesonian: The Original Millennials… October 11th, 2015

 Jonathots Daily Blog

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millennials

Using information provided and having a general understanding of the longevity of their lives, we can pretty well assume that Peter, Andrew, James and John were somewhere between the ages of 15 and 25 when they met Jesus of Nazareth.

And since they ended up living in the 1st Century A.D., they are “the original millennials.”

So it’s very intriguing to consider how Jesus handled these young men, who obviously had little interest in religious matters, God, traditions or anything but fishing.

Yes, they were typical young folk:

  • They were fishing for purpose.
  • They were fishing for compliments.
  • They were fishing for ways to avoid responsibility.
  • And in their case, they were literally fishing for fish.

They would never have encountered the Nazarene if he had held meetings at the local synagogue or started a store-front in Capernaum. So how did Jesus handle his millennials?

We find that answer in the Good Book, in Luke the 5th Chapter.

1. He went where they were.

They lived by the sea, so he went to the sea.

2. He worked with what they knew.

Since their business was fishing and they were accustomed to boats, he asked to borrow their boat so he could teach from it, which in turn created a climate for:

3. A captive audience.

Yes, to a certain degree they were trapped in the boat, doing him a favor, but at the same time, hearing the message. Yet Jesus did not stop there and make it a theological encounter. Instead:

4. He profited them in a way they could understand.

After the sermon he told them to take their nets and cast them into the water for a great haul of fish. Thus he proved that the best parts of believing in God are the benefits that come through practical application. Which ended up with:

5. Jesus joining them as they joined him.

And instead of holding a revival at the synagogue or storefront, Peter’s home became their headquarters. It’s much easier to minister to people in an environment where they feel comfortable taking off their shoes.

It is unlikely we will be able to conventionally reach a younger generation that has already given up on the idea of organized religion. Perhaps it is their mission to show us the fallacy of religion without reality.

So if you’re a minister, stop inviting people to church and instead, write a blog reviewing movies, TV shows or video games.

Meet the millennials at the sea, where they’re doing their fishing.

And benefit them by showing them ways to enhance their relationships, children and families.

And then, don’t force them to come to your institution, but instead, set up a way for them to have faith … in their own homes.

 

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Ask Jonathots … July 23rd, 2015

 Jonathots Daily Blog

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ask jonathots bigger

I’m a 24-year-old girl, engaged to be married this October. My fiancé and I are both ambitious career people–he’s a lawyer and I’m in graphics and advertising. Here’s my question: how do we keep the intimacy in the relationship when we have to spend so much time apart? Does absence really make the heart grow fonder? It makes me feel anxious.

You should feel anxious. You’re sitting on a powder keg.

I know I probably should answer your question a bit more diplomatically, but I think it is probably one of the more serious mistakes people make when assessing how their relationship with another human being is going to pan out.

Let’s put it this way: if sharing expenses, bank accounts, room space, refrigerator, shower and television privileges–if all of these were a turn-on, roommates would be ravaging each other right and left.

Relationship has to be more than finance and having children. What brings two people together is a common passion which is expressed in a common goal.

This is why grown adults who are committed to deep-rooted marriages can go on a movie set together and end up having an affair. The intimacy created by working on the same project is almost overwhelming.

With that in mind, rather than giving up on your relationship or going off and trying to start a rock and roll band together and starve in the street, just develop a side business, a common hobby or some activity which you repeatedly do together and demands the involvement of both of you, and to some degree places you in a bit of jeopardy.

You don’t have to do it more than once a week.

  • But you can make every Saturday your day to pursue your garage sale business.
  • Sunday afternoon could be the pursuit of arts and crafts, which you both try to market in some capacity.
  • Start a blog together.
  • Do a podcast about relationships.

Anything you can commit to together which forces you into a mutual sensation of being creative will keep the bark in your spark.

Without that, you can quickly become roomies who discuss bills and occasionally fall into bed with each other if you get horny enough.

When God made man and woman, he placed them in a Garden, and the first thing he gave them was a common occupation.

It makes us hot for each other.

If you have trouble finding something you want to do together, you might consider that to be tell-tale. If your only interest in one another is sex and marriage, it’s a horrible way to begin a life. It has to be sex, marriage plus something else.

And the something else will keep you involved with each other and help you to understand why the sex and marriage are there in the first place.

 

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