=> Don't signal your punch line. If the humor in your punch line
depends upon the words "ruptured camel," don't say the following:
Did you hear the one about the ruptured camel?
=> Don't EVER repeat a punch line! Once the surprise is revealed,
the joke is history. I'll repeat this, but I don't want to hear
you repeating any punch lines. Let me repeat. Don't EVER repeat a
punch line. Don't EVER repeat a punch line. NEVER repeat a punch
line. You'll be shot by the humor firing squad if you repeat a
punch line. OK. I'll let you repeat one, but only under certain
circumstances. Here's the exception. If you had a joke or punch
line that bombed miserably, you can call it back later to make
fun of yourself.
=> You must absolutely, positively memorize your punch line. You
should be able to awaken out of a deep sleep in an earthquake
and, without hesitation, deliver your punch line accurately. Give
all the facts necessary for the joke to make sense. The humor is
lost if you leave out the necessary details.
=> NEVER, EVER explain your joke. If they don't understand, it's
your fault for telling the wrong joke to the wrong audience.
=> Use the fewest words possible to get to the punch line.
Brevity is truly the soul of wit (never use a worn out cliche
either). The longer the joke, the funnier it must be.
=> Don't walk around too much when telling a joke or story. I
walk, but I stop when important points are being made and when
I'm delivering a punch line.
=> If you use notes, highlight or mark upcoming jokes or stories
so they don't sneak up on you. They will need special emphasis.
=> Practice! Practice! Practice! I tell a joke or story 30 to 50
times in practice before I use it in a presentation.
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