Purcell: Irish humor to prime the pump - East Valley Tribune: Opinion

Purcell: Irish humor to prime the pump

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Tom Purcell, a freelance writer, is also a humor columnist for the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review and is nationally syndicated exclusively by Cagle Cartoons newspaper syndicate. Email him at Purcell@caglecartoons.com.

Posted: Wednesday, March 14, 2012 8:21 am | Updated: 8:28 am, Sun Mar 18, 2012.

Ah, the St. Patrick’s season is upon us. Good thing, for we’re in dire need of some Irish levity about now.

It’s been more than three years since the crash of 2008, yet the economy still stumbles and Americans are eager for any sign of life.

It reminds me of the three Irishmen discussing their funerals:

“I hope the mourners at my wake say, ‘He was a wonderful family man,’” said the first.

“I hope they say, ‘He was a great man in the community,’” said the second.

“That’s all well and good,” said the third, “but I hope mine say, ‘Look, he’s moving!’”

People are growing more suspicious of Obamacare. Every day, government regulators reveal new mandates and taxes needed to pay for the “free” goodies our politicians have promised.

This grand bait and switch reminds me of the time O’Malley proposed to his girlfriend. One St. Patrick’s Day, he gave her a ring with a synthetic diamond.

The lass was so excited, she showed her family. Her father, a jeweler, quickly determined it was a fake.

The lass confronted her future husband and demanded to know why he’d attempt such a fraud.

“I did it in honor of St. Patrick’s Day,” he said, smiling. “I gave you a sham rock.”

The Republican presidential primaries have been awfully uninspiring. Poor Mitt Romney has been running for president for five years, yet primary voters remain underwhelmed.

It reminds me of the Irishman who threw a stick for his dog to chase but accidentally tossed it into the lake.

Amazingly, his dog walked across the water and retrieved the stick. The Irishman threw the stick into the water twice more and both times his dog walked across the water, then retrieved it.

Eager to show off his dog’s abilities, he found a Republican. The Republican watched as the Irishman’s dog walked across the lake and retrieved the stick.

“That’s not bad,” said the Republican, “but when are you going to teach your dog how to swim?”

Despite massive deficits and spending, increasing regulations and poor economic performance, there are many in the media who are looking for every opportunity to praise President Obama and the Democrats for the massive government expansion they’ve inflicted on us — as though such policies could be good for any economy.

Their capacity for denial reminds me of the one about Paddy the agnostic, who marries an Irish lass. Eager to please his new bride, he converts to her Catholic faith.

He has trouble embracing his new religion, however, so he confides in the parish priest. The priest tells him practice and repetition are the keys.

“For one hour every day,” says the priest, “repeat this to yourself: I am a man of faith now, not an agnostic. I am a man of faith now, not an agnostic.”

That appeared to do the trick until one Friday during Lent. Paddy’s wife arrived home to find him grilling delicious steaks in the kitchen.

“What are you doing, Paddy?” says his wife. “You know we must forsake meat on Fridays during Lent.”

Paddy looks to the skillet and says, “You are a trout now, not a steak. You are a trout now, not a steak.”

Alas, there are many woes to keep Americans uptight these days. The St. Patrick’s season offers a needed respite.

So, kick off your shoes, enjoy a fresh pint and share some Irish jokes, such as this one:

Q: Why are Irish jokes so simplistic?

A: So Congress can understand them.

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