November 16th, 2011


That joke's certainly been done, but *I* did it and amused myself

A shared moment from my Journey To Learn To Be Funny:

Summer 1992. I was still living in Northern Virginia, having graduated high school and getting ready to cross the country for college. I volunteered at the National Air & Space Museum. I helped out in Star Trek: The Exhibition. I still remember my orientation night, which started late in the museum's basement and continued with us riding an escalator to the main floor of one of the most popular museums in the world and the museum was EMPTY. Whoa. I may have run. I definitely entered the Skylab mockup the wrong way, entering the exit and exiting through the entrance, because for once it didn't have a long line. That was a neat volunteer gig (and was where, in the third-floor employee cafeteria, I had my first BLT). It meant I was in the museum at other non-public times, too.

Taking advantage of that: I staged a photo, one morning pre-opening, in Star Trek: The Exhibition. The exhibit had a fake transporter room, with cardboard standees of Kirk, Spock and McCoy standing on some of the pads. I took a picture with a full set of clothes (down to briefs and socks!) piled on another pad. I captioned it "Three to beam down...and this time, Scotty, take it out of 'body only' mode." I wanted to say "'flesh only' mode," because I thought that sounded funnier, but my overly literal self went But then the transporter wouldn't beam bones! There'd be this horrendous pile of soft parts! It wouldn't be funny AT ALL!

Being funny takes work. But implied nudity is funny almost no matter what.