Museum of Lost Wonder by Jeff Hoke
My rating: 2 of 5 stars
Jeff: Hey, Forrest, whattup?
Forrest: Jeff. Good to meet you. I've heard a lot about . . .
J: Wanna see something funny?
F: Yyyyeah . . . sure . . .
J: I've got this really funny joke about sex.
F: There are kids around.
J: Where did they come from.
F: You drove up in an ice cream truck. Of course they're going to flock around you.
J: Okay, okay. So there's this penis that . . .
F: Dude! Children! (points to the kiddies)
F: Audience, man. You've got an audience. You shouldn't be telling jokes like that to kids.
J: But why are the kids here?
F: I already explained this. (then, trying to change the subject) Say, I heard you have a degree in, what, philosophy?
J: Esoteric studies. You know: a little philosophy, religion, mysticism, alchemy and such.
F: That's pretty cool. So what is your favorite subject in esoteric studies?
J: Well, stories about creation are cool. And the different temperaments. You know: Sanguine, Melancholic, Phlegmatic, Choleric. Or maybe astrology. No, wait, science, hard science, big bang, quantum mechanics . . . oh, I don't know. Does it matter? It's all good. Except for religion. Religion's just dumb . . . if it's Christian or Jewish . . .
F: Okay, then. Hey, it looks like the kids are wandering off. Did you want to tell a joke?
J: Um, no. Because we've started talking about serious stuff now.
F: But I thought . . .
J: Okay, I can joke about creation myths just about any time. So who was the first business person?
F: I don't know, who?
J: Because she made Adam's banana stand!
J: Ha ha! I'm funny, huh? That was a funny joke, wasn't it? It was funny because it means two things at the same time because "Adam's Banana Stand" could be a business, but it also could be a euphemism because Eve made Adams . . .
F: Yeah. I get it.
J: Ha! Yeah, pretty funny, huh?
F: Um. Yeah. Hilarious.
J: Okay, so let me tell you another joke. So, this one's funny because it uses irony to make fun of the victim of . . .
F: Hold on. Stop! You don't tell someone *why* a joke is funny. You just tell the joke and wait for the reaction.
J: You do? But, it's funny . . . (in a deflated voice)
F: Okay. Okay. Looks like the kids are back now. Must have been your laughing.
J: Can I tell the joke now?
F: What's it about?
J: Suicide! It's hilarious!
F: Whoa, dude. No! Suicide is not funny. And, your audience . . .
J: (looks at the children, makes a sad face) Oh yeah.
F: Suicide is never funny, Jeff.
(Awkward silence intervenes)
J: But, dude, check out my tattoos!
F: Wha? What does that have to do with anything?
J: Dude . . . my tats . . . they're totally cool!
F: (Examines totally cool tattoos which are, indeed, totally cool) Yeah. They are cool. I'll give you that.
J: So can I tell . . .
F: No! Alright, Jeff. Nice meeting you. I really gotta go. By the way, it looks like some kids are making their way into the ice cream truck.
J: Well, I hope they like Victoria's Secret catalogs, 'cuz . . .
F: (Shakes head, wondering if he shouldn't help herd children out of the ice cream truck, then throws his hands up and walks away when he sees that the kids' parents are already on it)
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