Monday, June 23, 2014

So Punny

Laugh, and the world laughs with you - but resort to a corny pun, and you're on your own.  

Even my best friends do a phony BA-DUM-DUMP drumroll sound and ooze their disdain from every pore when I say something punny. Is it just me? I've known some homicidal punners who are serial butchers of promising puns. At least my puns are CPR worthy.

One observation I have about devoted punsters: we love it when people cringe at a pun. My target is the vocalized cringe; then I know I've really delivered the goods. When I hear a person emit a sound that might be confused with actual physical pain, I know I'm in the right neighborhood.

How did puns gets such a bad rap? T-shirt vendors would be out of business without the benefit of pundom; can't we have a smidge of appreciation for the artform?

So, I googled the topic: What's so wrong with puns? 

This is where I get in trouble. My hope was that someone, somewhere, out in the vastness of the universe (i.e., internet) had written a thoughtful commentary that might touch on something I hadn't thought of - thus leading to my two cents, and the fluently evoked favorite puns of today and yesterday. Once I start typing a post, I'm determined not to jump off the train of thought.

Okay, I have to sidetrack for a minute. Though I google many things (because I'm an American, dang it), I rarely google for the opinions of others. First and foremost, I fear that I will think something is an original thought, when actually it is something that I just browsed. Accidental, subliminal plagiarism. That would be horrific for me. Realizing that there's a lot of truth to the saying, "there's nothing new under the sun," every effort is made to be 100% Cherdo brain flotsam.

All I can say is WOW, Google - and there's a lot of people who have way more time on their hands than yours truly. Page after page of bad puns, good puns, reruns of terrible puns and overused puns appeared. Every favorite pun in my list jumped out at me. Assessing the situation, it occurred to me that possibly the very first humor webpage was about puns, though I can't prove it because I don't have the time to research all of the 4,600,000 hits. 

So, what's the answer?  What is so wrong with puns?  No originality remains, punwise, it would appear. Maybe it's time to re-think my pun devotion. But, not just me - for everyone. Until we can inject some new life or originality into punning, it might be time to move on and say good bye to such gems as "when chemists die, they barium" and "Dijon-vu; the same old mustard as before."  

A sad day for punsters...who can't draw!  

Whew, I'm back!  


  1. My husband loves puns. He got the habit from his mom, who got it from her mom. It's been passed down through no telling how many generations! Same jokes...but it's adorable.

    1. Stephanie, I've noticed my youngest son has become somewhat of a punster! It may be the best thing we leave him, ha ha.

  2. Good morning, ladies and germs! (BA-DUM-BUMP)

    Hi, dear Cherdo! It's me, Shady, your blog buddy from Punsylvania! (BA-DUM-BUMP)

    Seriously, it seems unfair when people talk about "the lowly pun" and categorize it as a lesser form of humor. Anything that can serve as a "pattern interrupt" and cause people to stop dwelling on their problems and worries for a moment and smile, laugh or even groan, has validity and serves a purpose. Closely related to puns are sick jokes and gallows humor, two more types that people tend to look down upon. As a veteran of the news business I can tell you that all three of those forms of humor were used frequently at the TV stations where I worked. They were tools that helped us cope with the horrors, tragedies and injustices in the news every day. Humor in all its forms is a healer. It's a shame that the movie industry tends to overlook comedies when handing out Oscars because "serious is better." I disagree.

    Thank you for putting some pun in my day, dear friend Cherdo. I leave you with this friendly piece of advice:

    If at first you don't fricassee... fry fry a hen. (BA-DUM-BUMP)

    1. Humor is so important to just help you deal with life! I totally agree with your comments - humor can be an important tool.

      Nursing was my first career, and it needed every bit of humor, gallows or pun, that could be injected into it.

      Pun way, Shady!

  3. My dad loved puns. People thought he was hilarious, and he was very popular. It was SRO at his funeral. I wish I were as clever as he was.


  4. My teaching partner is incorrigible. As you suggest, I think he wears the groans from others as badges of victory.

    And yet, there are some who make the puns work without the groans. Groucho Marx was the king.


Thanks for your personal yada, yada, yada,
Love, Cherdo