Humanising Language Teaching
Year 3; Issue 2; March 2000
On his deathbed
(offered to HLT by Therese Tobin, editor of Modern English Teaching)
The woman's husband had been slipping in and out of coma for several months, yet she stayed by his bedside every single day.
Today he seemed clear and his old self. She sat by him with tears in her eyes as he whispered:
" You know what, you have been with me through the bad times, through thick and thin.
When I got fired you were there with me.
When my business failed you were there.
When I got shot, you were by my side.
When we lost the house you were right there.
You know what?"
Her eyes were brimming with tears now and her heart was full of warmth,
" I think you're bad luck!"
An advance booking
This Northern European businessman was booking a long train journey:
" Please make sure you give me a seat facing the engine- I just
hate having to travel backwards."
The guy boarded his train and was furious to find he had been allocated a seat with his back to the engine. He rode backwards for five hours, fuming all the way.
On arrival at his destination, he demanded to see the Station Master:
" I must tell you, I am extremely upset, I specifically requested a seat facing the engine and your booking clerk at the other end could not even handle this
simple task. The whole situation is ridiculous."
" Oh, I see. Couldn't you perhaps have changed seats with another
" Quite impossible. I was the only passenger in the compartment! "
Disorder in Court is a recent book of absurd things actually said in courtrooms. People are e-mailing extracts from the book to each other with
huge enthusiasm. If you haven't already had such an e-mail the snippets from the book recently sent to me by Debbie Smith may amuse you:
Q: What is your date of birth?The Girl or the Bike
A: July fifteenth.
Q: What year?
A: Every year.
Q: What gear were you in at the moment of the impact?
A: Gucci sweats and Reeboks.
Q: What is the first thing your husband said to you when he woke up that morning?
A: He said " Where am I , Cathy?"
Q: And why did that upset you?"
A: My name is Susan.
Q: And where was the location of the accident?
A: Approximately milepost 499.
Q: And where is milepost 499?
A: Probably between milepost 498 and 500.
Q: Did you blow your horn or anything?
A: After the accident?
Q: Before the accident.
A: Sure, I played for ten years. I even went to school for it.
Q. Now, Doctor, isn't it true that when a person dies in his sleep, he doesn't know
about it till next the next morning?
" Where did you get that bike from , John?"
" Well, you see, there's this girl and this bike and she like ' you can
have the bike or you can have me', and it the same time she's peeling
her clothes off."
" I think you were right, John, you took the bike. Her clothes wouldn't
have fitted you!"
A Greek car Accident ( Pontios joke )
This guy buys a brand new car, takes it out for a drive and some one crashes into him. The car is concertina-ed. A passer-by sees the driver is in shock and wants to help him:
" All you have to do to straighten out your body work is to blow
through the exhaust pipe!"
The driver kneels down and tries it.
A second man comes by:
" That's no good, you're wasting your time"
" Why?" snaps the driver, exasperated.
" Cos you left all the windows open!"