This is my first monologue of this year. It’s been almost 4 months since I delivered a monologue, because of my long vacation in India, then the holiday season in December, and finally at the first Toastmasters meeting of this year, delivered one.
We’ll tell you what was said and what happened during the meeting before the monologue was presented.
THE SET-UP. We will give you enough background to help you understand the jokes.
1. There were 8 guests at the meeting, the highest ever.
2. One of the guests was from Bali, Indonesia. She said that during Indonesian New Year (in March), there would be no power supply, hence no mobile phones, no TV, no internet. Also they would fast the whole day.
3. One of the speakers talked about the progression from 1G to 5G in mobile phones. He was initially nervous, but later on gained confidence. His speech evaluator said that he could’ve made a strong opening like “Do you know there are many phones than the number of people using it?”
4. Maha was the stop-word counter.
5. The emcee of the meeting had to stand during the whole meeting because we had less number of chairs.
6. One of the table-topics was given to a guest named Gabriela. The topic was “Do you believe in God?”
7. One of the table-topics was “If you can go sky high, what would you like to do?”
8. The emcee of the meeting said that nobody is perfect, everybody is here to learn.
9. The emcee said that in Romania, on the New Year’s Day, they wear yellow underwear for good luck, red for love, and white for peace.
10. One of the speakers told that you’re never tool old to do something.
11. One of the speakers used a catchy word “resounding”, which grabbed everyone’s attention
12. Word of the day was “Ambassador”.
The Humor Monologue
1. I want to make a “RESOUNDING” opening. How about this? Do you know that today we have more guests with mobile phones than members with mobile phones?
(Usage of the word “resounding” to grab everyone’s attention. Implied punchline that the number of guests were more than the members)
2. In the past, we would have just one guest, then 2 guests, then 3, today 8 guests. Nice progression from 1G to 8G.
(Adapted the speech theme of progressing from 1G to 5G to use it for the G word Guest)
3. I have a friend whose first name is “Bas” and last name is “Hodor”. He would always introduce himself as “I’m Bas Hodor” “I’m Bas Hodor”.
(Word play on the word-of-the-day Ambassador. Hodor is actually a name of character from The Game of Thrones. I just happened to remember that and made word play out of it)
4. Look at the irony. The ah-ha counter has ah-ha in her name. Maha.
(Irony is mostly funny. Good observation.)
5. Another irony. The chair of the meeting doesn’t have a chair.
(Wordplay. And another good observation.)
6. When the table-topics master called Gabrielle to speak on the topic “Do you believe in God?”, she was like “OH MY GOD!”
(Very good response. Linking one’s fear of public speaking with the table-topic itself.)
7. My New Year resolution is to “stop drinking” unless you’re getting the beer for free.
(Self deprecation. Cheap)
8. If I can go sky high, I would like to stay there… far far away from my wife.
(My usual wife roast)
9. Dinil started his speech at 1G speed and finished his speech in a bang at 5G speed.
(Used his speech topic as his speech evaluation)
10. Sashi, you said that nobody is perfect. I would like to kindly remind you “I AM PERFECT”.
(Opposite of self deprecation. It’s kind of mild arrogance. Adding the word “kindly” in front of the punchline to make it sound like it’s not arrogant, but joke. It also hides the punchline coming.)
11. In Bali, no TV, no internet, no mobile phones on New Years Day. It doesn’t sound like a New Year. It sounds like going back to Old Year 1860.
(Observation that not using any device doesn’t sound like New Year, rather very old age)
12. In Bali, they fast on the New Year’s Day. Even I fast on Jan 1. And on Jan 2, I start eating, and say to myself, “Forget it. I’m not losing weight this year too.”
(Implied punchline that my New Year resolution is to lose weight. Self deprecation that I can’t follow my resolution even for one day.)
[Following 5 jokes are series of jokes on the same theme, which got huge response]
13. I don’t believe in good luck. I don’t believe in love. I don’t believe in peace. I mean I never wear an underwear.
(Paints a funny picture. Self deprecation)
14. What? You don’t believe me? [gestures like going to lower the trouser]
(Again paints a funny picture)
15. My New Year resolution is to start wearing one.
(Following up on the theme and linking it with New Year Resolution)
16. I hope I’m not too old for it.
(Callback to one of the motivational quote said during the meeting. Using that quote for wearing an underwear is funny.)
17. Before leaving, I would like to kindly kindly remind you “I AM PERFECT”
(Callback to my earlier line in the same monologue. Also irony that I’m not even wearing an underwear but saying I’m perfect.)
Here is another Observational Humor monologue which was presented at the end of a Toastmasters meeting. First you’ll be able to read the set-up for each joke. Then I’ll share the joke. Next I’ll briefly comment on what made the joke work. Although the examples of Observational Humor are in the context of a Toastmasters meeting, the skills apply just the same to any meeting you might be attending. It’s a useful skill to develop. When you can drop in an observational line into any presentation it makes the content of your whole talk feel fresh and original.
THE SET-UP (What happened and what was said during the meeting before the monologue was presented)
1. Winslow said that innovation is all around us.
2. Shane said that he’s afraid of speaking in public. He said he would try to control himself while he speaks… and when he gets nervous, the ground would swallow him.
3. Mike talked about surviving after a plane crash. He said, “Eat sea cucumber. Drink own urine if needed.”
4. Pauline said she likes breaking things.
5. One of the table topics was “How to get world peace”. Another table topic was “What’s the headlines tomorrow?”
6. Winslow asked the audience to raise hands if we had New Year resolution.
7. Winslow said he blushes only when in public, not when he is alone.
8. The light used by the timer (me) stopped working for 5 minutes.
9. Floris said that a guy built the model for “Gugenheim Bilbao” museum just using paper. That was an amazing innovation.
10. Fabi pointed out the mishap that happened during the Miss Universe contest. A contestant from Columbia was mistakenly crowned Miss Universe for 2 minutes. And then later taken back.
11. Three table topics speakers finishd their speeches in 1.35 minutes. When I reported that, the audience laughed.
12. The 3rd speaker Anna was absent.
13. Word of the day was pundit (a person who makes comments or judgement)
The Humor Monologue
1. Dear Toastmasters, guests, and Mr. Innovation. Because Innovation is all around us, no.
(Weakest line of the monologue)
2. The 3rd speaker Anna is not here. The ground swallowed her.
(A callback to ground swallowing someone. Decent laughter)
3. When I speak, I control myself. I mean, I ‘con’ myself. And I ‘troll’ myself.
(Wordplay. Self deprecation. I had to pause a little longer for this joke to work)
4. During the break, some people drank beer, some drank coke. I drank my own urine.
(Self deprecation. Again, I had to pause a little longer for the laughter to come)
5. Pauline likes breaking things. So, give her the world, and we will get world peace. And I am a PUNdit.
(Word play. With the topper as the word of the day)
6. Pauline, you are going to love your first speech – The ice BREAKER.
7. It’s no wonder when Rens invited Pauline to stage for evaluating Mike’s speech, he said, “Give your PIECE of evaluation.”
(Series of wordplay jokes)
8. I didn’t raise hands when Winslow asked if someone has New Year resolution, because my resolution is “Not to raise hands”. So far so good.
(Absurdity. Just tried to come up with a silly excuse for why I don’t have a resolution. And topper “so far so good” from the joke “I aim to live forever”.)
9. I would’ve failed if Winslow had asked “Who wants to have free food?”
(Self deprecation that I’m always ready to eat free food)
10. Tomorrow’s headlines is going to read, “Mr. India, Bala, after being crowned, ran away from the auditorium… within 2 minutes”.
(Paints a funny picture. Implying that they wrongly crowned me as Mr. India and I wanted to keep the crown, so I ran away).
11. Winslow, when you are the ONLY survivor of a plane crash, don’t worry. Look on the bright side. You won’t blush.
12. The light, for a moment, didn’t work. I was thinking of alternatives.
For green -> Sea cucumber
For amber -> A Dutchman (since Dutch wear orange dress)
For red -> Blushing Winslow
(Recall to blushing winslow. Follows the pattern of three)
13. When the guy built “Gugenheim Bilbao” museum using paper, a lot of people looked at it and wondered, “IT’S UNBELIEVABLE… AND FUNNY TOO. Mr. India ran away from the auditorium???”
(Recall to Mr. India joke. Museum made of paper – what paper it could be? Used the option – the paper where the headlines was about me)
14. Going by tonight’s trend, I am finishing my speech in 1 minute and 35 seconds.
(Recall to a funny fact. Nice closer)
Read the set-up below and then read the humor monologue.
THE SET-UP (What was said and what happened during the meeting before the monologue was delivered)
1. Nicole was the only lady who attended the meeting.
2. Chris’ Table topic was about New Year. He started his speech by saying 10..9..8..7..6..5..4..3..2..1..Happy New Year.
3. Nicole, during her speech asked all of us to keep our eyes shut and think of one powerful woman.
4. Ko said that New Year resolution never works.
5. Pierre quoted “Be an entrepreneur. Be here to win. But don’t be over confident.”
6. Floris gave a speech about agile development. He set an auto call on his mobile. And when the mobile rang, he picked that up and said “Oh, you want a website for your company?” That gave a good opening to his speech.
7. Floris asked the question, “What’s the purpose of Toastmasters?”
8. I gave a speech as well. My speech evaluator said that few lines were off timing.
The Humor Monologue
2. Don’t get confused. I’m trying to improve my timing.
3. First of all, hello LADY and gentlemen.
4. The purpose of Toastmasters is to make you bring into a room… full of men.
5. We learnt today – “Be an entrepreneur. Be here to win. But don’t have New Year resolutions.”
6. Ok. New Year resolution never works. Then what works? Fireworks.
7. In our meetings, we should make sure not to disturb others. (Looking at Floris, said this line). Floris, next time, switch off your mobile phone.
8. Nicole told all us men to keep our eyes shut and think of powerful woman. But what I would like to tell women is to think of anything, but keep their mouth shut.