Joe Stead – The Ramblings of an old Codger – Volume 126 – March 2011

So here I am in hot water yet again; well at least with two of my more sensitive readers. I completely fail to understand; as racist I’m definitely not. So a bunch of interesting letters follow including one from Dick Miles who seems to stand alone at understanding exactly what I’m ranting about. I use the word ‘ranting’ with some freedom in this instance as that is exactly what the mud slingers accuse me of. I do own up to criticizing those who follow the Muslim faith here in West Yorkshire, but how criticizing a religion can be deemed as racist is a little unclear to me. But perhaps those so quick to jump upon the mud slinging bandwagon don’t actually stop to think or read what I’m actually saying. Curious too that one of them should in the next post send me the following piece for my general amusement. To be fair I found the following highly amusing in parts, but I have to wonder how someone can accuse me of sounding racist and then follow it with Irish jokes, be they from an Irish source or not.

So before I go any further take a look at this, which in my opinion can be considered more racist than anything I’ve ever written myself…………

Letter from an Irish Mother to her Son!
Dear Son,
Just a few lines to let you know I'm still alive. I'm writing this letter slowly because I know you can't read fast. We are all doing very well.

You won't recognise the house when you get home - we have moved. Your dad read in the newspaper that most accidents happen within 20 miles from your home, so we moved. I won't be able to send you the address because the last Irish family that lived here took the house numbers when they moved so that they wouldn't have to change their address.

This place is really nice. It even has a washing machine. I'm not sure it works so well though: last week I put a load in and pulled the chain and haven't seen them since.

Your father's got a really good job now. He's got 500 men under him. He's cutting the grass at the cemetery.

Your sister Mary had a baby this morning but I haven't found out if it's a boy or a girl, so I don't know whether you are an auntie or an uncle.

Your brother Tom is still in the army. He's only been there a short while and they've already made him a court martial!

Your Uncle Patrick drowned last week in a vat of whiskey in the Dublin Brewery. Some of his workmates tried to save him but he fought them off bravely. They cremated him and it took three days to put out the fire.

I'm sorry to say that your cousin Seamus was arrested while riding his bicycle last week. They are charging him with dope peddling.

I went to the doctor on Thursday and your father went with me. The doctor put a small tube in my mouth and told me not to talk for ten minutes. Your father offered to buy it from him.

The weather isn't bad here. It only rained twice this week, first for three days and then for four days. Monday was so windy one of the chickens laid the same egg four times.

We had a letter from the undertaker. He said if the last payment on your grandmother's plot wasn't paid in seven days, up she comes.

About that coat you wanted me to send you, your Uncle Stanley said it would be too heavy to send in the mail with the buttons on, so we cut them off and put them in the pockets.

John locked his keys in the car yesterday. We were really worried because it took him two hours to get me and your father out.

Three of your friends went off a bridge in a pick-up truck. Ralph was driving. He rolled down the window and swam to safety. Your other two friends were in the back. They drowned because they couldn't get the tailgate down.

There isn't much more news at this time. Nothing much has happened.

Your loving Mum.

P.S. I was going to send you some money but I had already sealed the envelope.

So as already intimated I have no problem with this. If I had I wouldn’t have printed it. Now I know a lot of highly intelligent friends who are either directly Irish or are of Irish descent (a lot live in America). I’m sure that none of them will be offended by this nonsense, because they understand it is nonsense; and nothing more. But having said that to imply the Irish are thicko’s is surely more racist than stating there is a percentage of Muslims (a lot of whom live in West Yorkshire) who are liars and cheats, when it has been made evidently clear to me that that is the case. But according to some apparently not so.

I moved to Sowerby Bridge in 1985 from London mainly because I was going bankrupt and needed cheaper accommodation and mortgage. My folk singing career was fast going down the pan (a) because I had become very stale and (b) because there were a lot of up coming performers who were considerably better than I was at the craft. With no work, declining audiences and declining clubs; I had no income. Desperate to keep my head above water I put the banjo into the closet for 4 years and turned to finance broking. It was a job I did reasonably well for about 10 years. I like to think I was fair and that I didn’t plunge people into deeper debt. Indeed I received many letters from clients thanking me; and some came back for a second helping (excuse the pun).

In those 10 years I probably visited at least 4 Muslim households a week. That adds up to (and this amazes me now that I’m, working it out) about 2,000 Muslim households. I managed to arrange a re-mortgage for about 10 of them and arranged second charges for about 20 maximum. The other 1,970 failed to complete. Do you know why? Well I can tell you why! They lied. Simple as that. The majority of the 1,970 households told me they had no mortgage arrears when sometimes they were up to almost 6 months behind. They told me they had no County Court Judgements when very often they had Judgements as long as your arm. In the early days I paid the £25/£35/£45 required by the building society to get a mortgage report. I paid the £35/£45/£75 to get the property valued. Obviously there were ‘white’ households who lied as well; I would be stupid to claim otherwise. But the percentage of non-Muslim liars was considerably lower than the Muslim liars. Now this is not racist speak this is fact. In a lot of the Muslim households I had to call the female into the room because the male expected to deal with me privately. When I went to shake the wife’s hand many had absolutely no idea what I was trying to do. They had never shaken hands with a man before, and giggled when I took their limp hand in mine. When I visit my lovely local Asian restaurant (and I go there about once a week because the food is so good) the head waiter always shakes my hand, he now shakes Nora’s hand as well. In the old days, before I asked him to also shake the hand of my wife, he completely ignored her as if she was not even there. (That has happened in other Asian restaurants as well).

Now why the families told me they had no mortgage arrears and no county court judgements when it should have been obvious that I would find out is something I cannot conceive. I eventually got round the problem by charging the client for the mortgage report (which is now illegal but wasn’t at the time) on the understanding that I would repay the fee if the deal was completed. That soon sorted the problem out and I was politely shown the door; which was fine by me because it saved a lot of time, effort and money. It didn’t of course save petrol. But I was probably seeing about 5 or 6 households on every trip, most of whom were mainly non-Muslim so a bit of wasted petrol was not a big deal.

I’m now going to pick a few Christian countries completely at random. Let’s start with ‘A’. OK – America, Andorra, Australia, and Austria. Now let’s go to ‘I’. OK – Iceland, Ireland, Italy. Can anyone give me an instance in the entire history of these seven countries chosen completely at random where 200 men have walked out of their church after worship and immediately and collectively sexually assaulted and beaten an innocent woman? Yet it happened somewhere this last month. Where was it now? Oh yes; I remember it happened in Egypt, and here I stand to be corrected if wrong, the men were Muslim. Does this not somewhat back up my statement, claimed last month by two readers to be racist, that Muslim men treat their womenfolk with a great deal less respect than Christian men? The Times (England’s oldest and probably most respected newspaper worldwide) had this to say on the subject. The frenzy of the sexual assault on CBS correspondent Lara Logan shocked many people, but a woman being sexually harassed was not surprising. Egypt has a terrible reputation for men molesting women, especially foreigners, who are seen by many of the poorer-educated men as having loose morals. Few women visit Egypt without encountering some abuse. The result of a 2008 survey by the Centre of Women’s Rights found that 83% of Egyptian women have suffered some form of sexual abuse- and that rises to a staggering 98% among foreign women. Sixty percent of the men in the 2008 survey admitted harassment, and were shocked when Western women that they groped turned on them shouting and kicking them. This completely vindicates and supports my comments last month.

Now I understand from one reliable source that Vic Smith, one of my accusers, has in the past written slanderous comments about me on Mudcat. IF this be true, and I emphasize the word IF so that there can be no misunderstanding that I am accusing him of any wrongdoing, then I hold Mr Smith in the same respect as I hold dog shit on the pavement. My true friends know exactly where I stand on the subject of race; and I consider those who utter and post slanderous comments about me on Mudcat as contemptuous pathetic and cowardly enemies. They are beneath my contempt and shall remain so.

On a completely different subject I would like to send condolences to New Zealand for the unexpected earthquake they have just experienced. I have distant (and they could hardly be further away) relations living in New Zealand. I trust they have all survived and they’ve not lost any friends. I have to wonder just how much damage the French caused when they tested their nuclear bombs beneath the Pacific Ocean back in the 1990’s. You can’t tell me that setting off a nuclear explosion, however deep and distant it might be, does not cause a weakening in the Earth’s plate somewhere; even if it takes 15 years to materialize.


Fixture List for Kimber’s Men and Joe Stead

2011
Feb 24th (KM) Tremayne Hall, Mylor, Falmouth, Cornwall 7.30pm
Feb 25th (KM) The Ring of Bells, St Issey, Near Padstow, Cornwall. 8.30pm
Feb 26th (KM) The Market Theatre, Ledbury.
Feb 27th (KM) The Somerset Arms, 30 Moorend Street, Cheltenham. 3pm
Mar 5th (KM) Puzzle Hall Inn, Sowerby Bridge. 9pm
Mar 19th (KM) Rhos-y-gilwen, The Oak Hall, Nr Rhoshill, Pembrokeshire.

Apr 7th (Joe) 4 Bradford Playhouse Chapel Street, Bradford. Life + Times Paul Robeson
Apr 8th (KM) Folly Bridge Inn, Abingdon Rd, Oxford (Folk Club). OX1 4PD
Apr 9th (KM) The Quay Theatre, Sudbury, Suffolk.
Apr 10th (KM) The White Horse, Edwardstone. 2pm
May 1st (KM) Liverpool Shanty Festival
May 2nd (KM) Liverpool Shanty Festival

May 12th (Joe) Bradford Playhouse, 4 Chapel Street, Bradford. Life + Times Pete Seeger
May 13th (KM) Clennell Hall Folk Festival, Alwinton, Northumberland
May 14th (KM) Clennell Hall Folk Festival, Alwinton, Northumberland

May 15th (KM) Clennell Hall Folk Festival, Alwinton, Northumberland
Jun 17th (KM) Falmouth Shanty Festival
Jun 18th (KM) Falmouth Shanty Festival
Jun 19th (KM) Falmouth Shanty Festival
Jun 25th (KM) Wirral Folk Festival
Jun 26th (KM) Wirral Folk Festival
Jul 11th (KM) New Vic Theatre, Etruria Road, Newcastle-under-Lyme, Stoke.
Aug 13th (KM) Zuiderzeemuseum in Enkhuizen Festival, Holland.
Aug 14th (KM) Zuiderzeemuseum in Enkhuizen Festival, Holland.
Aug 26th (KM) Shrewsbury Folk Festival
Aug 27th (KM) Shrewsbury Folk Festival
Aug 28th (KM) Shrewsbury Folk Festival
Aug 29th (KM) Shrewsbury Folk Festival
Sep 10th (KM) Great Yarmouth Festival of the Sea
Sep 11th (KM) Great Yarmouth Festival of the Sea

Sep 14th (Joe) Barnsley Probus Club. – Life and times of Paul Robeson.
Sep 17th (KM) Astor Theatre, Deal. (Maritime Festival)
Sep 23rd (KM) Barnfield Theatre, Exeter; with Exmouth Shanty Men
Sep 30th (KM) Tenterden Folk Festival
Oct 1st (KM) Tenterden Folk Festival
Oct 2nd (KM) Tenterden Folk Festival
Oct 8th (KM) Oxenhope Primary School Governors Concert
Oct 11th (KM) The Works, Sowerby Bridge; with Vin Garbutt.

Oct 22nd (KM) Ellesmere College, Shropshire
Nov 9th (KM) The Works, Sowerby Bridge
Dec 14th (KM) The Works, Sowerby Bridge


2012
Jan 13th (KM) The Works, Sowerby Bridge
Jan 28th (KM) Minstead Village Hall - Provisional
Feb 8th (KM) The Works, Sowerby Bridge
Jun 22nd (KM) Teignmouth Folk Festival – Provisional
Jun 23rd (KM) Teignmouth Folk Festival - Provisional
Jun 24th (KM) Teignmouth Folk Festival – Provisional
Aug 3rd (KM) Festival Maritim, Bremen, West Germany (Provisional)
Aug 4th (KM) Festival Maritim, Bremen, West Germany (Provisional)
Aug 5th (KM) Festival Maritim, Bremen, West Germany (Provisional)


Review

FROM HIGGIN CHAMBER – John Bromley (Own Label, no catalogue number)
Although by now he’s chalked up something closely approaching four decades of singing experience on the local folk scene, a solo performance from John is a rare occurrence indeed, for he’s best known these days for his involvement with the doughty shanty-crew Kimber’s Men. Which makes the appearance of this CD a significant cause for rejoicing among those who appreciate fine singing. For there can be no dispute that John’s is one of the great voices of the folk scene, one whose essence is captured to absolute perfection here by Ross McOwen at his Higgin Chamber recording studio. Here John wraps his wonderfully strong, enviably firm and supremely confident bass voice around 20 songs that by and large reflect his long-time love of a straightforward repertoire of tried and tested, genuinely felt songs that have a special meaning for him: songs that have stood the test of time and yet still have potential for good fresh contemporary interpretation – which John provides here in (suitably rich, dark-chocolatey-hued!) spades. The oft-invoked Paul Robeson comparison is one that for once is neither specious nor glibly convenient… so the centrepiece of this collection, and its focal point for many, will be his charismatic rendition of Old Man River, a big reading in every way, powerfully done with total conviction as well as tonal panache, more than a match for any one of the classic Robeson recordings of this showpiece, spinechillingly good and with an impact that never fades however many times you play it. But John’s no one-trick pony, for his deep love for, and deep familiarity with, all of the songs he’s chosen to record here rings out bold and true. His commitment is to share them with his listeners, in which exercise he proves the best possible communicator, with as natural a flair for unfolding a story (whether it be Archie Fisher’s iconic Witch Of The Westmairland or the lesser-known Ferryland Sealer) as for encapsulating a feeling or mood (The Lover’s Ghost and The Banks Of The Lee, both of which are moving disc-highlights). Although John’s is an unreservedly “big” voice, both in obvious timbre and maturity, it’s a marvellously flexible instrument that’s capable of much refinement, delicacy and dynamic shading, as his exceptional take on Jock Of Hazeldene demonstrates (here he also makes unexpectedly effective use of decoration). His diction is impeccable, as is his virtuoso control of line whether in moulded legato mode on the ballads or at a faster pace (tripping effortlessly through the metric idiosyncrasies of Bold Reynard The Fox). Modern-day classics like Stan Rogers’ Field Behind The Plow and Andy M. Stewart’s Queen Of All Argyle also come off very well, as does Archie Fisher’s wistful Shipyard Apprentice; although all these are taken quite fast, they lose none of their potency. On just under half of the songs (nine in total), John accompanies himself on guitar, a further two on bodhrán; the remainder are beautifully rendered in pure acappella mode. All in all, an outstanding and loving portrait of a singer at the top of his game, truthfully and classily recorded: a disc to really savour. (Contact: Bromleyjohnbrom@aol.com.)
David Kidman.


LETTERS

Dear Joe,
I do not think that you are a racist but your last edition of ramblings reads as if you are. I have shown your piece to two people not in the folk scene. They concluded that it was written by a racist. Like me you hate lies whoever tells them. Your logic is however from misunderstanding of statistics and false correlations. Most Pakistanis are Muslim. IT is basically a Muslim State. To say that most Pakistanis in England are liars is not anything to do with their being Muslim. It is something deeply embedded in Pakistani culture. The correlation with Islam is therefore irrelevant. If you say that in your experience most Pakistan origin children are liars I see nothing wrong with that. The link with Islam is totally false.
You must not make generalised conclusions about Islam until you know more about it. The kindest, most considerate people that I have ever worked with and for were the Muslim Fulani nomads of the Bamenda / Adamoua Highlands in Cameroon. Their women were not downtrodden or subordinated, far from it. They had up to four wives and their women were some of the most beautiful that I have ever seen. When some British Soldiers in Cameroon thought so too, they soon learned how the Fulani loved their women folk and protected them. The Fulani suffered badly from terrorists who were almost all native Cameroonians from Roman Catholic upbringing. Many of their women were brutally beheaded. They came to my wife and I for advice on how to respond.
While it is true that most Muslims around the world are resonable, peace loving and usually well integrated, (In the US especially, what do we do wrong in UK?), it is also true however that almost all terrorists around the world today are Muslim. I agree that only the Islamic people can tackle the problem. America could help by not massively backing the nuclear armed terrorist state of Israel. I am not anti Semitic, have many Jewish friends and indeed relatives but most of them are now anti Israel. Joe I suggest that you read the Koran. Incidentally Roman Catholic Schools try hard not to allow Muslim children into their schools. In Ireland the RC schools were closed to Protestants. Get some perspecive Joe and stop the tirade of the uncomprehending.
Another common misuse of words is 'ant semitic'. If you look up Semitic in the OED you will find that both Arabs and Jews are semites. I am not anti semitic-I like Arabs. I am not anti Jewish, my father was an atheist half Jew, I am, however fervently anti Israel. I think it is the most dangerous terrorist organisation in the world. Lacking scruples, ruthless, underhand, war mongering and untrustworthy. We are told that they have nuclear weapons. Although Saddam Hussein was not a nice man, if I had been in his shoes and as close to Israel I would sure as hell pretended to have weapons of Mass destruction just in case Israel thought they could nuke Iraq and get away with it.
On a quite different topic, the resignation of one and the firing of a second Sky Sports commentator. Please note that they showed a total failure to understand Football's offside rules. The female referee was the one who knew. Do we want pig ignorant commentators on sport regardless of race, colour, sex or creed. Did you know that Afghanistan, Nepal among others have Muslim women's cricket teams playing international matches and coached by men? I would hate an anti Muslim, anti woman man to be their referee.
Sincerely,
Eric Cowell


Hello Joe
I have just finished reading this month's 'ramblings' and as per usual a most enjoyable and thought provoking read. I just hope that the inclusion of my own comments will not provoke too many of your readers.
Had I known that my e-mail may have been considered as a worthy addition to your newsletter, I would have certainly spent more time constructing it and made it a more interesting read.
I am sure that the content of this month's 'ramblings' will definitely have a few people huffing and puffing and the fall out of it will be sizeable.
Please don't cross me off your mailing list as it is becoming more and more, my favourite read on the 'net.'
The snow boots that I ordered mid November, came through last week! It only took 'Easylife' nine weeks to get them to me.
So I thought you should know, that I am now able to get out of the house without fear of going over on the ice.
Phew, what a relief!
All the best
Paul Shipton

Hiya Joe,
Have just got back from Oz. Such a great time, in beautiful hot sunshine (Sydney, Brisbane & Melbourne) despite the horrors of flooding further up the coast in Q'land & Victoria, the cyclone & now bush fires in Perth. I went meet up with an old friend who used to be an Eltham beauty (still is) named Ann Bissmire. You probably don't remember her! Anyway, she's lived in Oz since her teenage years & we've kept in regular contact all that time! It was lovely to see her again.

So I've only just scanned your "ramblings". I suppose there are not many people who read your "ramblings" who knew you as a young man (boy) - I could be wrong - so I was interested in your "religious" slant. St Luke's church/youth club was awash with gorgeous young men I seem to remember (with my rose-tinted spectacles on) back then, who sat in the back row at church on Sunday, mainly to chatter & liaise with all & sundry. Taking the sacrament was a "consequence" I suppose. Interesting thoughts of yours anyway!

And I only barely remember your "speech impediment". You were such a lovely young man, full of life & music. Intelligent & gawky. So your speech was never an issue as far as I can remember. I expect your singing helped you overcome it, but it has never featured in my memories of you at all, until now!

I guess we all had our "imperfections" as teenagers but all I can remember is good times with great friends.

Incidentally I saw the 'King's Speech' last November at the London Film Festival & was fortunate enough to have the director, Tom Hooper there to do a Q&A about how the film evolved. It was fascinating!
Take care.
Regards
Sue Head

Dear Joe,
Great newsletter, as always. As an old friend from the states, your former webmaster and a Microsoft certified techno-geek that also works for Microsoft I take great umbrage at your list of things that a car would do if it was made by Microsoft. You missed one, if a car was made by Microsoft it would ask you “Are you sure?” every time you tried to turn on the radio. I’m sure there are others. I’ll keep my eye out for them and send them to you as I find them.
All the best to you and Kimber’s men.
John McGlinchey
Springfield, PA USA


Cummon, Joe,
Surely what you mean is that you don't want to hear a woman commentating on a male football match? I would have to agree from a contextual point of view as it wouldn't sound right to me but...
...as you know, I am an enthusiast for women's football (and we both went to see Charlton play Leeds one year way back) and they normally have male commentators when on tv (which is fine) but they have one woman summariser who sits alongside who would be great for any footie match.
I remember one time in the Women's Euro Finals, the male commentator said 'Why didn't she (the German forward) head the ball there?'
'Probably trying to protect her outrageously expensive hairdo'
A long pause ensued.
'Only kidding,' she said.
Lee Smith.


Hi Joe,
Didn't know you were an 'Addicks supporter...my brother remained a season ticket holder till his death. I strayed down the road to Millwall, no problem in the fifties when they were two divisions apart.
Jeff Sawtell


Joe,
I'm afraid that your rantings are getting more extreme by the month, and in spite of my best efforts to make you ameliorate your views, I feel that you have become much more of a narrow minded bigot by every communication, leaping on every extreme on our right wing press and reproducing it. Your newsletter has become utterly predictable and repetitive. The opinion expressed about you by Alan Bearman is the one commonly expressed about you on the very few times that I have heard your name mentioned in folk music circles. The time has come, therefore, for you to remove me from your circular list. Unfortunate, really, when we have known one another for most of our adult lives, but I am afraid that I must write you off as a sad case incapable of redemption.
Vic Smith


Hi Joe
I read your post with interest. As I see it your objection to the Muslim religion is not a racist objection but a religious objection. I feel the same way, as regards the treatment of women by some Muslim men, however I am more concerned about the Roman Catholic religion, than the Muslim Religion. Any church that has condoned wholesale buggery and sodomy, and physical and sexual abuse of children, needs to be seen as a number one threat.
The many Catholic priests who have had licence to perform their acts of abuse, should be severely punished as should the head of that church. Personally I am in favour of the following punishments. The Stocks every day for a year, community service but not prison [it costs too much], and medical castration and hormone injections so they are unable to have these diabolical sexual urges. The present Pope should be put in the stocks every day for a year, he has been responsible for a massive cover up.
Alan Bearman and others seem to have misunderstood your points I interpret your objection to the Muslim religion to be based upon their lack of respect for women, the viewpoint that women are second class citizens, which then appears to form a general attitude that women are chattels who can be abused and exploited at will.
I have the same problem with the Roman Catholic religion and with the condonement by the Vatican hierarchy of sexual abuse [buggery and homosexual acts upon non consenting minors by priests]. My objections , I think are similar to your own and are not based upon anti Indian or anti Irish, or any racism whatsoever, but are based on an objection to anyone showing lack of respect for other members of the human race, whether they be Irish Choirboys,, Asian Women, or European Women.
Dick Miles


Dear Joe,
Thanks for your latest issue. As usual, it was a fine read.
I particularly endorse your comments on the student protest riot in London. I too think that the guy who threw the fire extinguisher actually got off quite lightly.
Not quite sure though Joe, that you have thought through your comments regarding the guest house owners who refused a double bed to a gay couple. It simply won't do to liken it to a friend who refused the highest bid for his banjo, on the grounds that he preferred it to go to a new owner who would care for it more (and thus sold it, to him, for a lower bid).
Look, you and I are old enough to remember when our big cities contained signs in the windows of houses along the lines of "Bedsit to let. No niggers and no Irish need apply."
I know in my bones - indeed, in my very WATER - that you would be the LAST man to defend such shameful prejudice.
And I put it to you that the anti-gay guest house owners, are the spiritual children of those postwar inner-city landlords, rather than the spiritual siblings of your banjoist friend.
Kindest,
Dai Woosnam.


Hi there Joe
In Auckland we are fine thanks. The Christchurch City is like a war zone. The centre of the City having serious devastation and loss of life. The professional organisations are well organised down there. Search and Rescue teams from Australia have arrived this morning to assist. The Prime Minister of Britain said a S&R team have been deployed and has offered what ever assistance NZ requires. At times like this, it brings out the very best in human nature. The main focus at the moment is getting people out of the many collapsed buildings and ensuring that medical attention is there for the injured. The organisations are well organised down there and the government has pulled out all the stops.
Auckand is a lower risk area but having said that a new fault line is at the bottom of the earthquate in Christchurch. This earthquake was 6.3, centred 10km South of the City (Lyttleton) 5km deep. This is the reason why this one caused more damage than the previous 7.1 earthquake which was centred over 30kms to the west of the City last September.
Thanks for your email Joe, I hope all is well your side of the world.
Cheers
Jane Wallace

FUNNIES

Hypnotist at the Senior Center
It was entertainment night at the Senior Center .
Claude the hypnotist exclaimed, I’m here to put you into a trance. I intend to hypnotize each and every member of the audience.
The excitement was almost electric as Claude withdrew a beautiful, antique pocket watch from his coat.
I want you each to keep your eye on this antique watch. It’s a very special watch.
It’s been in my family for six generations. He began to swing the watch gently back and forth while quietly chanting, Watch the watch, watch the watch, watch the watch...
The crowd became mesmerized as the watch swayed back and forth, light gleaming off its polished surface.
Hundreds of pairs eyes followed the swaying watch until, suddenly, it slipped from the hypnotist’s fingers and fell to the floor, breaking into a hundred pieces.
SHIT! said the Hypnotist.
It took three days to clean up the Senior Center ..
Claude was never invited back to entertain.


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THIS YEAR WE WILL EXPERIENCE FOUR VERY UNUSUAL DATES:
1 / 1 / 11 1 / 11 / 11 11 / 1 / 11 11 / 11 / 11
NOW FIGURE THIS OUT.
FIRST: TAKE THE LAST TWO DIGITS OF THE YEAR YOU WERE BORN.
SECOND: ADD THE AGE YOU WILL BE THIS YEAR.
IT WILL EQUATE OUT TO 111.
THIS IS SO BIZARRE, AND IT'S REALLY TRUE !

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The first 747 to be piloted by a woman flew from Hong Kong to San Francisco. It was a reat breakthrough for women at the time. The attractive Lady pilot had to meet the press. One questioner asks "What is it like to be woman in the cockpit?" She responded "Lets just get this straight, we do not call it the cockpit any more".

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"Insanity, you inherit it from your children".


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Two guys were discussing popular family trends on sex, marriage, and family values.
Bill said, 'I didn't sleep with my wife before we got married, did you?'
Larry replied, 'I'm not sure, what was her maiden name?'


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A little boy went up to his father and asked: 'Dad, where did my Intelligence come from?'
The father replied. 'Well, son, you must have got it from your mother, Cause I still have mine.'


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'Mr. Clark, I have reviewed this case very carefully,' the divorce Court Judge said, 'And I've decided to give your wife $775 a week,'
'That's very fair, your honor,' the husband said. 'And every now and Then I'll try to send her a few bucks myself.'


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A blonde calls Delta Airlines and asks,
'Can you tell me how long it'll take to fly from San Francisco to New York City ?'
The agent replies, 'Just a minute.'
'Thank you,' the blonde says, and hangs up.

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Two Mexican detectives were investigating the murder of Juan Gonzalez.
'How was he killed?' asked one detective.
'With a golf gun,' the other detective replied.
'A golf gun! What is a golf gun?'
'I don't know. But it sure made a hole in Juan.'


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A man is recovering from surgery when the Surgical Nurse appears and asks him how he is feeling.
'I'm O. K. But I didn't like the four letter-words the doctor used in surgery,' he answered.
'What did he say,' asked the nurse.
'Oops!'


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The graveside service just barely finished, when there was massive clap of thunder, followed by a tremendous bolt of lightning, accompanied by even more thunder rumbling in the distance...
The little old man looked at the pastor and calmly said, 'Well, she's there.'


Keep smiling, keep singing.
Joe Stead