Jeb Bush, speaking about his mother Barbara’s sense of humor, stated at her funeral, “Humor is a joy that must be shared.” My cousin Wesley Harris is doing his part. He started exchanging puns with his nephew, Paul Donaldson. Others contributed and now Wesley has collected a ton of puns, quips and jokes.
Wesley posts a daily funny on his Facebook page, bringing smiles, chuckles and sometimes groans.
“It started as a hobby,” he said, “and has turned into a way to encourage.”
He loves giving people a lift while seeing varied reactions. Sometimes people don’t seem to get the puns, he said.
For example, think about this advice: “Never date a tennis player. Love means nothing to them.”
And, “I’ve been reading a book about anti-gravity. It’s impossible to put down.”
Also, “What’s the difference between a hippo and a zippo? A hippo is really heavy, and a Zippo is a little lighter.”
And this classic: “A group of chess enthusiasts checked into a local hotel and were standing in the lobby discussing their recent tournament victories. After about an hour, the manager came out of the office and asked them to disperse.
“But why?” they asked as they broke up.
“Because,” he said, “I can’t stand chess nuts boasting in an open foyer.”
On another note, “The biggest lie I tell myself is ‘I don’t need to write that down; I’ll remember it.”
Wesley gets his funny bone naturally because it runs in the family. Comedian Jeff Foxworthy is in our family tree on the Harris side. I’ve heard it said you must be a redneck if you go to the family reunion to look for a date.
Wesley’s grandfather Johnnie was a Harris who married a Banks named Mattie Lou. Johnnie’s brother Flournoy, my grandfather, married Bertha Banks,
Mattie Lou’s cousin. So two Harris brothers married two Banks cousins, thus intertwining two longtime Fayette County families. My mother Gladys and her siblings and Wesley’s father and his siblings were first cousins.
Other Fayetteville folks in the family tree on the Banks side include Dave Lee, my dentist. My great-grandfather and his great-grandmother were brother and sister, and we share the same great-great-grandparents. Also, the tree includes Eldred and Delores Banks. My grandmother, Bertha, who married Flournoy, was a sister to Eldred’s dad, Ernest Banks.
Also included is Kenneth Turner, the local Gideon, but I don’t know where our branches intersect.
When Wesley’s uncle C. B. Harris (my mother’s cousin) died in January, the family asked me to do the funeral service. I was honored. C. B.’s nephew, Johnny Noles, whose mother’s funeral I also did, pointed out cousin Jeff would be proud.
Johnny said, “You know you must be a redneck if you can find a preacher who is related to both sides of the family to do your funeral.” I qualified, “relatively” speaking.
Wesley enjoys bringing a smile to people’s faces.
“What do you call a bear with no teeth? A gummy bear.”
“Employment application blanks always ask who to call in case of emergency. I think you should write, ‘An ambulance.’”
“I thought I saw an eye doctor on an Alaskan island, but it turned out to be an optical Aleutian.”
“A man knocked on my door and asked for a small donation for a local swimming pool. So I gave him a glass of water.”
“The statistics on sanity indicate that one out of every four persons is suffering from some sort of mental illness. Think of your three best friends. If they’re OK, it may be you!”
“I feel like my body has gotten totally out of shape, so I got my doctor’s permission to join a fitness club and start exercising. I decided to take an aerobics class for seniors. I bent, twisted, gyrated, jumped up and down, and perspired for an hour. But, by the time I got my leotards on, the class was over.”
And one of Wesley’s favorites? “He had a photographic memory but it was never fully developed.”
As Proverbs 17:22 reads, “A merry heart does good like medicine.” A little laughter goes a long to help brighten the day.
(Dr. David L. Chancey is pastor, McDonough Road Baptist Church, 352 McDonough Road, Fayetteville, GA, near McCurry Park. The church family invites you to join them this Sunday for Bible study at 9:45 a.m. and worship at 10:55 a.m. Visit them online at www.mcdonoughroad.org and like them on Facebook).