Keepapitchinin, the Mormon History blog » Funny Bones, 1911

Funny Bones, 1911

By: Ardis E. Parshall - November 22, 2008

From the pages of the Young Woman’s Journal, 1911:

The teacher was telling the story of Red Riding Hood. She had described the woods and the wild animals that live there. “Suddenly,” she said, “Red Riding Hood heard a loud noise. She turned around, and what do you suppose she saw standing there, looking at her and showing all its sharp, strong white teeth?”

“Teddy Roosevelt!” cried one of the boys.

At a prayer meeting in the backwoods, testimonies were requested, and a very old woman tottered to her feet.

“I want ter tell this blest company,” her voice quavered, “that I have rheumatiz in my back, and rheumatiz in my shoulders, and rheumatiz in my legs, and rheumatiz in my arms, but I hev been upheld and comforted by the beautiful Bible verse, ‘Grin and bear it’.”

There Are Many Such

A German-American parent, living in New York, had occasion to say to his daughter, “Katrina, such a big girl as you vas, should not play so much dose poys mit.”

“Dat ish so, fader, put de bigger girl I vas, de more I like to play dose poys mit.”


City Man: “I should think you would find life very dreary.”

Resident of Country Town: “Here – I tell you this is a pretty lively place for its size.”

City Man: “I should not suppose from the looks of things that anything ever happened here.”

Resident of Country Town: “There is where you are mistaken! Why, it ain’t two weeks since we had an eclipse of the moon.”

No Mistake

It is hard to prove a negative, but it seems not absolutely impossible.

“My boy,” said a father, “I shall have to punish you for breaking this vase.”

“Oh, but he didn’t break it!” spoke up the boy’s sister.

“How do you know that?” asked her father.

“I saw him didn’t!” answered the little girl, triumphantly.

“Name some of the most important things existing today, which were unknown a hundred years ago,” said the teacher, and Tommy answered with laconic modesty, “Us.”

A little boy came to this sentence in his reading lesson: “There is a worm; do not tread on him.” He read it thus, to his teacher’s great surprise: ‘there is a warm doughnut; tread on him!”

“Mother,” asked little Ethel, “now that you’re in mourning for Cousin Adelaide, will you wear black nightdresses, too?” “What an absurd question, child!” “Oh, I only thought you might be as sorry at night as you were during the day,” ventured Ethel.

“Do you believe in Santa Claus, little girl?” “No; but I pretend to, just to please mamma. She thinks I do; and why rob her of her harmless illusions?”

“Mr. Grimes,” said the rector to the vestryman, “we had better take up the collection before the sermon this morning.”


“Yes, I’m going to preach on the subject of economy.”

Of Local Interest

Little Helen, to older sister: “Elsie, what is that thing by the side of your head that moves when you eat?”

Elsie: “That is the temple, child.”

Helen, touching the dome of her head: “And is this the tabernacle?”

Elsie: “No, girlie; that is the Assembly Hall and the Bureau of Information.”

A teacher in one of the city schools asked a pupil in natural history: “What animal skins make good shoes?” “I don’t know,” was the reply, “but banana skins make fine slippers.”

A Scandinavian farmer in southern Utah was opposing the request of a company who desired to utilize the water used for farming purposes to run an electric light plant. When assured that the supply would in no wise be diminished, he answered with vehemence: “But vat good vill the vater be to me if all the electricity is gone out of it?”

“A kid up on Second Avenue has two of the cutest little white goats,” announced Jimmie, one evening, as he ran in from play.

His father looked up from his newspaper and exclaimed, “Why, son, you must be mistaken. It is the goat that has two kids.”

Florence, the youngest member of the family, was very fond of cold tongue. One evening when the delicacy formed part of the supper menu she looked at her mamma and said earnestly, “Mamma, I think a cow ought to be very happy to have such a good taste as this in its mouth all the time.”

A lady, leaving her house for the day, left a card on the door for the grocer’s benefit which read, “All out. Don’t leave anything.” When she returned she found the house ransacked and these words added to the card: “Thanks. We didn’t leave much.”

Teacher – Which New England State has two capitals?

Johnny – New Hampshire.

Teacher – Indeed; name them.

Johnny – Capital “N” and capital “H.”

A doctor’s assistant was unable to read Latin, so the bottles were numbered for him. once he was told to give Mr. Jones a pill from bottle number six. When asked if he had done it, he said: “Number six was all gone, so I gave him one from number four and one from number two.”

Bill Jones is a country storekeeper down in Louisiana and last spring he went to New Orleans to buy goods. The goods were shipped immediately and reached home before Bill did. When the drayman left the boxes at the store, Bill’s wife looked at the largest and started to scream and ask for a hammer. Some of the neighbors, hearing her screams, rushed to her assistance and asked what was the matter. Pale and faint, the wife pointed to a card on the box that read, “Bill inside.”

Kinks – “Is Sanford optimistic?”

Jinks – “I should say he is. I have known him to enter a restaurant without a cent and order oysters, feeling sure he could pay his bill with a pearl.”

Tourist – “What a long tunnel this is.”

Brakeman – “This is no tunnel; this is Pittsburg.”




  1. I drove to Pittsburgh regularly a few years ago as part of my job. The tunnel joke brought back memories. Thanks for the trauma, Ardis.

    The joke about preaching on economy was excellent.

    Comment by Ray — November 22, 2008 @ 10:16 pm

  2. The comic strip “Calvin and Hobbes” once went like this

    Calvin: Where do we go when we die?

    Hobbes: Pittsburg?

    Calvin: Is that if we are good or bad?

    Comment by BruceC — November 22, 2008 @ 11:32 pm

  3. Bruce, I have a photocopy of that comic, given to me by my Regional Manager. I’m still not sure of the answer to the final question.

    Comment by Ray — November 23, 2008 @ 7:22 pm

  4. Pittsburg or Pittsburgh?

    Pittsburgh is actually quite a nice town. Pittsburg (the various I’ve known), not so much.

    Comment by queuno — November 24, 2008 @ 2:56 pm

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