Snappy Answers to Stupid Questions

Once upon a time (or perhaps more than once. I think they had sequels!) Mad magazine put out a book of snappy answers to stupid questions, and I got my fat little fingers on a copy of it when I was a youth of maybe nine or ten.

The book, for those of you who are unfamiliar with it, would have a strip with someone doing something very obvious, like fishing. There’d be a bucket next to him, with a large fish, and some passerby would stop and say “Wow, d’you catch that fish?!” and the fisherman would answer, three different times… 1. No, I talked him into giving up. 2. No, I was walking by and the darn thing just jumped into my bucket. 3. No, it’s a plastic decoy for attracting other fish.

This kinda thing was (and is!) RIGHT up my alley. Never before had I seen a book so funny, and so useful!

I learned a lot that year about the kinds of things some people thought were funny, and how other people didn’t always agree.

I was reminded of this book recently while at my nephew’s High School graduation party. The wife and kids and I had attended, and had a great time. We ended up leaving a bit early cause my kids turn into imps when their sleep schedule is disrupted. Pretty much requires me to be home every night by 7pm for the foreseeable future.

As we were pulling into the driveway, my wife realized we’d left a couple of necessary items, and we’d have to go back. My mother in law was home, so we put the kids to bed, and headed on back. The gig was still going on, so we let ourselves back in, got our stuff and prepared to leave again.

My nephew, who’d just graduated saw me and said “Didn’t you guys leave already?” “Yeah,” I said. We’d left X, Y and Z.” Someone who’d been there standing off to the side for the whole brief conversation said “Awe man, did you come back?”

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11 thoughts on “Snappy Answers to Stupid Questions

  1. I couldn’t do it… She was so innocent when she asked the question, and her face was beaming with empathy. I stared at her a moment, long enough for my nephew to start stifling a laugh. But I reached for my snappy answers, and was totally blocked by my sense of chivalry or something…

  2. LOL wiseassery always welcome here Leslie!Jenny, funny you should mention, I was recounting the story to my brother (the father of the graduate) who is very much a cerebral sort with a smiliar sense of humor to mine, and that’s exactly what he said “Heeeere’s your sign.”

  3. “Snappy Answers…” was by Al Jaffe, one of the funniest guys ever. He was also the one who did the fold-in in every issue. Hilarious (and inventive) guy, one of my childhood heroes.

  4. I got all nostalgic and started buying Mad magazine. My brother used to buy it when we were growing up. I still love it and send them to my sister when I’m finished. I’m glad your chivalrous nature won out and you didn’t say anything. I love it when people ask me what I’m doing when I’m stirring something on the stove.

  5. “Gawd, did those impostors of ours get here first again?””No, we forgot to leave a come-back, so we returned..”We don’t have Mad, but our Private-Eye sounds close enough.

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