Reader’s joke file filled to top with chuckles

Burt's Eye View

A message was penned on the back of the envelope: “If I was meant to pop out of bed, I would sleep in a toaster.”

I opened the 6-by-9-inch packet and shook out a sheaf of papers. The sender, Marcie Danyi of Niles attached a note: “Look what I found in my joke collection.”

Now this is the kind of mail I like to receive.

I often think invoices from the utility guys, auto mechanics and service folks are joke collections. It turns out they think they’re serious.

But these were jokes that were meant to be jokes. I couldn’t wait.

The filing on top was a newspaper column by some clean-shaven dark-haired guy with big glasses writing about the perks of turning 40. Among the gems:

“People no longer view you as a hypochondriac.”

“You quit trying to hold your stomach in, no matter who walks into the room.”

“You sing along with elevator music.”

I thought, “If this young punk thinks his early 40s are decrepit, he ought to try life at nearly 60.” My second thought was, “Hey, I am that young punk! Or I was once.”

That’s right, a column I wrote nearly 20 years was in Marcie’s joke file. Cool. I’ve worked hard all my life to be a joke. And now I am.

I dug deeper into the joke file. A clip from the November 2004 The Senior News included these bits of wisdom:

“I’ve learned age is a very high price to pay for maturity.”

“I’ve learned that I don’t suffer from insanity, I enjoy it.”

“I’ve learned that one good turn gets most of the blankets.”

Another sheet from The Senior News offered more benefits of growing older:

“People call at 9 p.m. and ask, ‘Did I wake you?'”

“Things you buy now won’t wear out.”

“Your ears are hairier than your head.”

“You can’t remember the last time you laid on the floor to watch television.”

Some of the pages were favorite jokes that Marcie typed herself, including:

“A patient complained to his doctor, ‘I’ve been to three other doctors and none of them agreed with your diagnosis.’ The doctor calmly replied, ‘Just wait until the autopsy. They they’ll see that I was right.'”

In 1985, Marcie typed up some of her favorite puns, including “Did you hear about the disc jockey who lived on spins and needles.” In 1985, that made sense. Today, the kids are thinking, “Huh?”

Another pun: “I’m going to take a trip to Kansas City this year. I heard that Missouri loves company.”

While Marcie’s joke file stretched back 40 years, the timely IRS jokes work today. Here’s a sampling:

“Believe me, it’s getting to the point where you need more brains to make out the income tax forms than to make the income.”

“You probably heard about the man who claimed 50 percent depreciation on himself on his income tax form. It was his wife’s idea. She claims he’s only half the man he used to be.”

Thank you, Marcie, for sharing your joke file. I’m honored to be included, even if my hair color has suffered 50 percent — OK, 80 percent — depreciation since I made the file.

— Share your favorite jokes with Cole at or on the Burton W. Cole page on Facebook.