Farts = not funny; Nuns = hilarious! November 11, 2007 12:01 PM   Subscribe

Help with Nun Humor: no?

My comment -- pointing out that maybe we shouldn't make fun of women who devote their lives to the service of others and often face poverty in retirement (despite working for one of the richest organizations in the world) -- gets deleted almost immediately, and yet the thread itself lives?

OK. I shoulda taken it here first. So here we are. Why is it OK to make fun of nuns?
posted by mimi to Etiquette/Policy at 12:01 PM (87 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite

I don't see anything making fun of nuns in that thread.
posted by The corpse in the library at 12:05 PM on November 11, 2007


All they want from the thread is a way to make some jokes relating to the life of a nun or Catholics in general. That doesn't mean they want to make fun of nuns. Joking around doesn't have to involve ridicule.
posted by Ms. Saint at 12:11 PM on November 11, 2007


Well, your comment wasn't a clean joke about Catholicism, so of course it was deleted.

Maybe it isn't OK to make fun of nuns, but it's not clear anyone was making fun of nuns, and even if people were, making fun of nuns is surely not so reprehensible that it requires deletion.

Lots of things on AskMe are going to offend various people's moral senses. Questions about abortion, premarital sex, seeking certain employment, joining the armed forces, using certain substances, etc. will all strike at least some users as wrong.

AskMe isn't the place to air these moral judgments, though.
posted by Mr. President Dr. Steve Elvis America at 12:11 PM on November 11, 2007


You want the mods to delete questions that offend you? Or what?
posted by tepidmonkey at 12:11 PM on November 11, 2007


The musical "Nunsense" doesn't make fun of nuns, really (any more than any other comedy makes fun of the characters who find themselves in silly situations). It is, as the poster states, good clean fun, and the poster intends to help keep it that way, and I don't see anything wrong with that sort of request.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 12:12 PM on November 11, 2007 [1 favorite]


Get thee to a funnery!
posted by brain_drain at 12:12 PM on November 11, 2007 [20 favorites]


Why is it OK to make fun of nuns?

You clearly never went to Catholic school.
posted by felix betachat at 12:13 PM on November 11, 2007 [8 favorites]


This MetaTalk thread making fun of people making fun of nuns offends me. Please delete it, mods.
posted by EndsOfInvention at 12:14 PM on November 11, 2007


Dude, the question isn't asking "help me to best mock nuns." Most of the jokes in the thread aren't even about nuns. ILB is in a show that, pretty harmlessly, pokes fun at Catholic culture generally.

Perhaps it would be best for those of you without a sense of humor to stay out of the thread about jokes.
posted by dismas at 12:17 PM on November 11, 2007


Being offended by people making fun of people making fun of nuns is offensively thin-skinned. Please delete EndsOfInvention's comment.
posted by ikkyu2 at 12:19 PM on November 11, 2007


While we're here, could we get a list of other types of humor that we're against?

I hate puns, myself.
posted by Bookhouse at 12:19 PM on November 11, 2007 [1 favorite]


What the hell are you on about?
posted by puke & cry at 12:22 PM on November 11, 2007 [2 favorites]


There's no way that mimi was raised Catholic.
posted by empath at 12:23 PM on November 11, 2007


My super-Catholic great aunt went to see Nunsense and loved it. This isn't a hurtful, "hey help me rip nuns a new one" but more, "hey give me some funny lines for my playful show about nuns." CHILL.
posted by SassHat at 12:24 PM on November 11, 2007


mimi, your comment wasn't trying to answer the question, you were picking a fight in the thread. That's pretty much out of line for askme, hence the comment's deletion.

You're right that here is the place for this kind of policy argument. Honestly, I don't see any sort of nun-mocking in the question and the thread itself seems to be going reasonably well besides, so I think you might be overreacting a bit to the actual situation, however noble your instinct itself is.
posted by cortex (staff) at 12:27 PM on November 11, 2007


Offensive jokes are the funniest.
posted by C17H19NO3 at 12:29 PM on November 11, 2007


Being surrounded by a family of good Irish catholic stock I can vouch for the fact that bead rattlers and their Nun overlords like nothing better than a good laugh, particularly at their own expense.

St. Teresa of ávila specifically warned her sisters against a deadly serious religiosity. “A sad nun is a bad nun,” she said. “I am more afraid of one unhappy sister than a crowd of evil spirits.... What would happen if we hid what little sense of humor we had? Let each of us humbly use this to cheer others.”

A more contemporary example is Blessed Pope John XXIII, whose most famous sally came when a journalist innocently asked, “Your Holiness, how many people work in the Vatican?”

John replied, “About half of them.”
posted by brautigan at 12:31 PM on November 11, 2007 [5 favorites]


Two nuns are sitting in a bath:

Sister Ignatius: Where's the soap...
Sister Franciscus: Does, doesn't it?
posted by Rumple at 12:32 PM on November 11, 2007


You clearly never went to Catholic school.
Four years of high school -- and I'm still an atheist, the way I was raised.

For the record, I personally am pro-fart-joke. I also swear like a sailor, which I learned from my own mother superior. Maybe I'm oversensitive from knowing too many nuns in real life (c.f my mother*), but I'd imagine there'd be a pileup of protest if someone asked for clean blonde/Polish/black/gay jokes here.

On a closer read of the original question, you're right, it does say "Catholics;" it was "nun humor" in the title.

*holy crap, I just realized the untapped wealth of yo-momma jokes I could zing myself with!
posted by mimi at 12:34 PM on November 11, 2007


Everyone makes jokes about nuns, doctors, rabbis, psychiatrists, priests, elephants, and dead babies. It's a human thing.
posted by hermitosis at 12:37 PM on November 11, 2007


Actually I take it back. I want the mods to start deleting the "what nasty-ass bug from the seventh circle of hell is this?" questions, because out of morbid curiosity I always click on the link and it's always like a 1024x768 photo on Flickr and then for the next hour I keep thinking there are potato bugs crawling up my legs.
posted by tepidmonkey at 12:38 PM on November 11, 2007 [1 favorite]


There are many people that will tell you that you shouldn't make fun of other people. They may be right.

However, there are many people that will tell you that you can't make fun of other people. That's flat wrong. Because I've heard the one about Helen Keller falling into a well and breaking three fingers frantically calling for help.
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 12:39 PM on November 11, 2007 [2 favorites]


What's black and white and won't fit through a revolving door?

A nun with a spear through her chest!
posted by BitterOldPunk at 12:49 PM on November 11, 2007 [2 favorites]


Maybe I'm oversensitive from knowing too many nuns in real life

My mother and her sister are both ex-nuns. They were first in line when Nunsense came to town decades ago. As someone who's completely humorless about the treatment of Catholicism around here, you're definitely being over-serious.
posted by yerfatma at 12:58 PM on November 11, 2007


It's OK to make fun of nuns because this is the 21st century.
posted by Brocktoon at 12:59 PM on November 11, 2007


I'm a nun, and I'm not offended. So this thread can fuck right off.
posted by Asherah at 1:14 PM on November 11, 2007 [8 favorites]


Because I've heard the one about Helen Keller falling into a well and breaking three fingers frantically calling for help.

Hehe...

Have you seen a picture of Helen Keller's father?

neither has she
posted by C17H19NO3 at 1:37 PM on November 11, 2007


Yeah, sometimes I make fun of nuns. It's a bad habit.
posted by box at 1:37 PM on November 11, 2007 [4 favorites]


(Fake) Nuns reinacting Sneezing Panda.
posted by dirigibleman at 1:39 PM on November 11, 2007


Where do you think you get your information from, nun?
Do you think that you can joke when Revelations comes?
posted by Astro Zombie at 1:54 PM on November 11, 2007 [5 favorites]


He who mocks nuns will later join the church.
posted by Aloysius Bear at 1:59 PM on November 11, 2007 [1 favorite]


The musical "Nunsense" doesn't make fun of nuns, really...

"Nunsense" (in which the AskMe OP will be appearing) has been a popular musical since 1985.

"Why is it OK to make fun of nuns?"

Mimi -- maybe you wanna take that question to the "more than 25,000 women have played in Nunsense productions worldwide, including Edie Adams, Maxine Audley, Kaye Ballard, Honor Blackman, Pat Carroll, Peggy Cass, Phyllis Diller, Louise Gold, Maggie Fitzhugh and JoAnne Worley."*
posted by ericb at 2:05 PM on November 11, 2007


Holy plagiarism, brautigan!
posted by grouse at 2:06 PM on November 11, 2007


I'd imagine there'd be a pileup of protest if someone asked for clean blonde/Polish/black/gay jokes here

I don't recall any complaints about "Know any good Dalai Lama jokes?"
posted by mediareport at 2:10 PM on November 11, 2007


Ah (from above) -- Dead Baby Jokes, Blonde Jokes and Helen Keller Jokes!
posted by ericb at 2:10 PM on November 11, 2007


Need Another Seven Astronauts
posted by psmith at 2:13 PM on November 11, 2007


Need Another Shuttle Also
posted by C17H19NO3 at 2:27 PM on November 11, 2007


There is an unaccountable lack of AskMes soliciting jokes about gays, blacks and the handicapped.
posted by meehawl at 2:31 PM on November 11, 2007


Ok, mimi, I think you're confusing two different types of humor. There's the derisive kind of out-group humor that you seem to think is so unfair to nuns. I will offer no opinion on that here. What the OP is looking for however is not out-group humor, but in-group humor. He's looking for jokes about catholics to tell to other catholics. I would say it's fair to presume that he/she is a catholic as well, and the whole premise seems to be poking fun at highlighting shared experience rather than shared fear or hatred.

At it's core this is the n-word debate all over again. Since I have experience as a catholic, and none as an n-word I feel more capable of offering my opinion on the matter here. If it's your group, and you're talking to other members of said group, then humor aimed at that shared demographic data tends to do more to unite than divide. Had the question been: "I'm going to a Know-Nothing rally and I'd like to tell some catholic jokes to really focus the mood," there might be a problem.

The actual question, however, was so far from that example that it could be thought of as the opposite. I would say it's more disrespectful to nuns to deny their need for a good laugh as much as anyone.
posted by Doublewhiskeycokenoice at 2:45 PM on November 11, 2007 [1 favorite]


Need Another Shuttle Also

Atlantis (STS-122) is at the launch pad and ready for a December 6 launch.
posted by ericb at 2:49 PM on November 11, 2007


I was hoping this would be the forum for "dirty" jokes about catholics that you can't say in that thread, because I always loved this one:


A train hits a bus filled with Catholic school girls and they all perish.

They are in heaven trying to enter the pearly gates when St. Peter asks the first girl, 'Tiffany, have you ever had any contact witha male organ?'

She giggles and shyly replies, 'Well, I once touched the head of one with the tip of my finger.'

St. Peter says, 'Okay, dip the tip of your finger in the Holy Water and pass through the gate.'

St. Peter asks the next girl the same question, ' Sandra , have you ever had any contact with a male organ?'

The girl is a little reluctant but replies, 'Well, once I fondled and stroked one.' St. Peter says, 'Okay, dip your whole hand in the Holy Waterand pass through the gate.'

All of a sudden, there is a lot of commotion in the line of girls. One girl is pushing her way to the front of the line. When she reaches the front, St.Peter says, 'Reva, What seems to be the rush?'

The girl replies, 'If I'm going to have to gargle that Holy Water, I want to do it before Jessica sticks her ass in it.'
posted by kisch mokusch at 2:54 PM on November 11, 2007 [6 favorites]


There is an unaccountable lack of AskMes soliciting jokes about gays, blacks and the handicapped.

Verboten!

No Humor/Jokes Allowed: Gays, Blacks or the Handicapped.
posted by ericb at 3:04 PM on November 11, 2007


Need Another Shuttle Also

No, meant Bud Lite!
posted by psmith at 3:06 PM on November 11, 2007


What the OP is looking for however is not out-group humor, but in-group humor.

Exactly.

As a gay man, I,personally, take no offense to:
Little Britains' The Only Gay in the Village

The Big Gay Sketch Show

Laughing Matters
It's "all-in-good" when it's laughing "with/about"; "bad" when it's laughing "at."
posted by ericb at 3:10 PM on November 11, 2007


Who's sayin' we can't laugh at Sally Field? Now, Patty Duke is a whole other thing...

I hate puns, myself.
Bookhouse, get thee to a punnery.
posted by wendell at 3:24 PM on November 11, 2007


a rabbi, a minister and a priest are fishing in a boat - "i think i need to stretch my legs a little," says the rabbi, and gets up and walks across the water to the shore

the minister stands up and says, "i'll join you," and proceeds to walk across the water to join the rabbi

the priest is trying to figure this out - finally, he says to himself that if a rabbi and a minister can walk across the water like jesus did, a priest of the one true catholic church should be able to do it - so he stands up, walks out of the boat and falls in up to his neck

the rabbi says to the minister, "i guess we should have told him where the rocks were"
posted by pyramid termite at 3:35 PM on November 11, 2007


Why is it OK to make fun of nuns?

What a bizarre question to ask. That's like asking, Why is it okay to make fun of politicians? Why is it okay to make fun of writers? Why is it okay to make fun of suburbanites?

The answer, clearly, is because it is okay to think, and communicate, and laugh.
posted by jayder at 3:44 PM on November 11, 2007 [1 favorite]


Why did Helen Keller's dog run away?

You'd run away too if your name was AARRRRPHREEEEAWWWBEBEBEBBTHHfff.
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 3:48 PM on November 11, 2007 [5 favorites]


What's black and white and red all over?

A nun on her period or a penguin in a blender. I forget which.
posted by item at 3:54 PM on November 11, 2007


What's black and white and has trouble going through revolving doors?

A nun with a spear through her head. Although I imagine a penguin in a blender might also experience difficulties.
posted by Astro Zombie at 4:00 PM on November 11, 2007 [2 favorites]


Pointing out that maybe we shouldn't make fun of women who devote their lives to the service of others and often face poverty in retirement (despite working for one of the richest organizations in the world)

Care to be more exact? I work with nuns on a daily basis and I'll take their retirement package a corporate retirement fund any day.
posted by jmd82 at 4:07 PM on November 11, 2007


Gah, over a corporate retirement fund...
posted by jmd82 at 4:08 PM on November 11, 2007


Moses and Jesus and a little old man are playing golf.

Moses tees off and it lands right in the middle of the water hazard. So he walks over, holds up his club, parts the water and knocks his ball up on the green.

Jesus swings and his ball drops in the water too, so he walks on the water and finds the ball and makes it to the green.

The little old man hits his ball and it doesn't even go in the right direction, it flies towards the highway, bounces off a passing truck, rolls to the edge of a pond where a frog jumps off his lilly-pad and tries to eat it. Just then an eagle swoops down and carries off the frog with his sharp talons, with the ball still in its mouth. In its death throws, the frog opens his mouth and the ball drops right onto the green and rolls into the cup.

Moses looks over at Jesus and says, "I hate playing with your Dad."
posted by vronsky at 4:10 PM on November 11, 2007 [3 favorites]


What kind of meat does a priest eat on Friday?

Nun!
posted by mr_crash_davis at 4:33 PM on November 11, 2007 [1 favorite]


I work with nuns on a daily basis and I'll take their retirement package a corporate retirement fund any day.

Where Faith Abides, Employees Have Few Rights
posted by meehawl at 4:53 PM on November 11, 2007 [2 favorites]


If Sister Mary Ignatius were only here, she'd explain it all to us.
posted by psmith at 5:38 PM on November 11, 2007


How do you get a nun pregnant?
























you have sex with her
posted by exlotuseater at 6:32 PM on November 11, 2007 [2 favorites]


Interesting read, meehawl, with some good points raised, though that article isn't exactly relevant to a nun's life and their retirement. Orders don't just boot nuns for getting cancer or whatever and them working into their 80s here is not uncommmon. As with any organization, there are no doubt religious organizations which treat people unfairly. Guess I've been lucky with knowing those whom I have.
posted by jmd82 at 6:53 PM on November 11, 2007


Oy gevelt, I cry "uncle."
But I'm soooooo gonna remember this for the next blackface question...
posted by mimi at 7:00 PM on November 11, 2007


If Sister Mary Ignatius were only here, she'd explain it all to us.

Why is St. Christopher no longer a saint, and did anyone listen to the prayers I prayed to him before they decided he didn’t exist?
posted by ludwig_van at 7:02 PM on November 11, 2007


Why can't Helen Keller drive a car?







Because she's a woman.
posted by Meatbomb at 7:03 PM on November 11, 2007 [1 favorite]


Why can't Helen Keller drive a car?

Meatbomb, you just told that shitty misogynistic joke. Give it a rest.

Well then you know the answer. Come on, tell me, why can't Helen Keller drive a car?

Because she's a woman?

No, because she's dead.
posted by Meatbomb at 7:06 PM on November 11, 2007 [1 favorite]


Hey Meat, what's the best thing about fucking twenty six year old girls?





There's twenty of 'em!
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 7:09 PM on November 11, 2007 [2 favorites]


This is going well.
posted by absalom at 7:13 PM on November 11, 2007 [1 favorite]


Say, what did it mean in that one episode of The Mighty Boosh when Rich Fulcher threatened someone by saying he would be "on them like a nun sandwich"?
posted by Lentrohamsanin at 7:24 PM on November 11, 2007


From the crypt of the Church of St. Giles
Came shrieks that could be heard for three miles.
"My goodness, my gracious"
Said Sister Ignatius,
"Has the Father forgot the altar boy's piles?"
posted by Rumple at 7:34 PM on November 11, 2007


Two leprechauns go into the office to see the Mother Superiior, hats in hands, suitably polite. The Mother Superior looks the wee folk over, says "Good day, gentlemen, I must say we don't see many leprechauns here at the abbey; what may I do for you?"

The first one, he does all the talking. He says "Forgive us, Mother Superior, for taking up any of your time, but we just wanted to have a few words with the young leprechaun nun you have here at the abbey."

The Mother Superior looks at her assistant, they exchange a few puzzled looks, finally she turns back to the leprechauns and says "I'm sorry, gentlemen, we have no leprechaun nuns here at the abbey."

The second leprechaun cuffs the first one in the back of the head, and says "See! I told you you fucked a penguin!"
posted by yhbc at 7:57 PM on November 11, 2007 [1 favorite]


What's stiff, twelve inches, and makes women scream in the morning?

Crib death.
posted by hermitosis at 7:57 PM on November 11, 2007 [1 favorite]


them working into their 80s here is not uncommmon

That is a fine retirement package.
posted by meehawl at 7:58 PM on November 11, 2007


But I'm soooooo gonna remember this for the next blackface question...

I must have missed the first blackface question.
posted by puke & cry at 7:59 PM on November 11, 2007


I'd just like to point out that nuns and monks and whathaveyous have been the object of ridicule forever and ever. In a medieval Icelandic manuscript there's the following joke (according to an old teacher of mine... oh and from memory):

An Abbot and his young secretary, a monk, were traveling. One night they took lodging in a nunnery. Over the course of the evening the young monk took a shine on a young nun which was reciprocated and they snuck off to the nun's cell. While in there one of the senior nuns susses them out and knocks on their door, summoning them to the hallway. She then drags them towards Abbess's chamber. The senior nun knocks on the door comes out in somewhat of a huff and says: "What's the matter? Why am I disturbed at this late hour?" The senior nun, the secretary and the young nun are dumbstruck. The abbess continues: "Well? Why do you stand there open-mouthed and silent? Why did you rouse me in the middle of the night? Speak!" Finally the secretary speaks: "Mother Superior? Why are you wearing the Abbot's underpants on your head?"

I didn't say it was going to be good!
posted by Kattullus at 8:19 PM on November 11, 2007 [1 favorite]


Three elderly nuns have been sent to a tropical island for vacation with some of the other members of their order. Two of them go on a tour of a banana plantation, leaving their mostly deaf third nun behind to soak up the rays. When they got back to the beach, they started to tell the third sister about their tour.

"I saw a banana this big," said one, holding her hands six inches apart.

"That's nothing," said the second. "I saw one this big." She holds her hands nine inches apart.

"Father who"? asks the third
posted by Bookhouse at 9:50 PM on November 11, 2007


What's black and blue and hates sex?


The 8 year-old in my basement.
posted by C17H19NO3 at 3:23 AM on November 12, 2007 [2 favorites]


What has seventy-five balls and screws old ladies?


BINGO!
posted by C17H19NO3 at 3:24 AM on November 12, 2007 [1 favorite]


Ambrosia Voyeur, I like this version better:

What's the best thing about fucking twenty six year old girls?

There's twenty six of them.
posted by tehloki at 6:37 AM on November 12, 2007


What has 4 legs and 1 arm?

A happy pit bull.
posted by allkindsoftime at 6:57 AM on November 12, 2007


So there's this group of nuns who tend a lovely vegetable and herb garden. They've taken a vow of silence, but because they are members of the Sacred Order of Saint Letitia Esoterica the Sublime, once a year one member is allowed to speak one sentence.

The feast day of Saint Letitia rolls around as is its wont, and the good sisters work diligently preparing a sublime ragout from their garden to dress their pasta. You can see why the ragout should be sublime; I won't get into that.

The feast has ended, and the gnarled hand of destiny has pointed a wizened digit at Sister Loretta, who stands, clears her throat, and prepares to speak for tte first time in years.

"Sisters," she begins, voice quavering, "the ragout was too salty." She lowers her head gravely and sits down.

The next year, the sisters prepare a mushroom stock. This year, the honor of speaking falls on the youngest member of the order, Sister Helen Baque, a spritely 57-year-old.

She stands to speak, somewhat haughtily in the eyes of her solemn sisters. "Sisters," she intones, "the stock was a bit oily for me." And with that re-takes her seat and her silence.

The next year, the sisters prepare a stew of squash and beans. The wisest of the order, Sister Edwig, rises slowly on her stiff joints, ready to address her order.

"Bitch, bitch, bitch."
posted by Mister_A at 9:54 AM on November 12, 2007 [1 favorite]


"...twenty bucks, same as in town."
posted by cortex (staff) at 10:01 AM on November 12, 2007


Eleven...two in the front, two in the back and seven in the ashtray.
posted by slogger at 10:14 AM on November 12, 2007 [1 favorite]


They only took two cars.
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 10:19 AM on November 12, 2007


Take my wife... please!
posted by Mister_A at 10:25 AM on November 12, 2007


You're going to hell tehloki, and save me a seat, wouldja?
posted by Mister_A at 10:26 AM on November 12, 2007 [1 favorite]


What are three words you do not want to hear when having sex?

"Honey, I'm home!"
posted by C17H19NO3 at 10:36 AM on November 12, 2007


No soap, radio!
posted by ericb at 11:08 AM on November 12, 2007


arr, it's drivin' me nuts!
posted by Kwine at 12:05 PM on November 12, 2007


Mister_A, I've been to hell. It sounds like this.
posted by tehloki at 12:06 PM on November 12, 2007


So three nuns were taking a walk through Central park, when they happened upon a flasher, who opens up his raincoat in front of them.

The first elderly nun sees it, has a stroke, and falls over dead.
The second nun sees it, has a stroke, and passes out.

The third nun kept her hands to herself.
posted by toxic at 2:57 PM on November 12, 2007 [1 favorite]


« Older Prodigal Son   |   Going once... Going twice... Going three times Newer »

You are not logged in, either login or create an account to post comments