You are not what people call you.
You are what you answer to.
Origin: 10th century - British English - The word “ride” is one of the oldest verbs in the English language with Germanic and Indo-European roots. Originally it had to do with sitting atop a moving horse and later, any vehicle. The idiomatic phrasal use of “ride on” is more recent, probably 18th or 19th century, and comes from horse race wagering or gambling. People would bet on the outcome of horses ridden by riders, or jockeys. The expression could relate to the rider or the amount wagered.
Usage: Informal and formal, spoken and written, general British and American English.
Idiomatic Meaning: To depend on or have a strong personal stake in the success of an event or process, when the outcome is uncertain.
Literal Meaning: The word “lot” is extremely general and refers to certain amounts, usually large. It’s an intensifier, so “a lot of money” means a relatively great amount of money. When you bet a lot, you are wagering large unspecified amount of money. If you have a lot riding on something it can mean either that you have placed a large bet on an event like a horse race, or that a horse has a large heavy rider with a lot of weight.
Why is this funny? In the photograph where we see a sumo wrestler riding a horse in a race. If you bet a lot of money that he would win then you “have a lot riding on” a horse with “a lot riding on it.”
Sample sentence: I had “a lot riding on” Syracuse in the basketball tournament. They were not even close to winning.
What’s so funny about this? This joke is so stupid, it’s actually funny, if you’re in the right mood. The photo is pretty funny and/or amazing. Here’s this guy who’s balancing a car on his head - an amazing feat of strength and balance, AND amazingly stupid because it could crack or snap his neck and spine with one wrong move. Nevertheless, he seems to have done it and survived, the picture is the proof, unless it’s been photoshopped, or faked, but I have no reason to suspect it. So, what should we call this guy? Well, the joke tells us to call him Jack. Why not Joe, or Dummy for that matter? Well, that’s where the pun is. A “jack” is a mechanical device found in the trunks of most cars, which is used to lift the car in case you get a flat tire. This enables you to change the tire. A jack works on the leverage principle. You stick the jack under the side of the car you want to raise. You then either insert a short metal bar and pump it up and down or turn a crank. Either way the jack moves up and takes the car with it, raising it on one side so you can remove the flat tire and replace it. So far we’ve been talking about “jack” as a noun. Of course, it’s also a proper noun, or a common masculine name; that’s why the pun works. But as a verb “jack” has a different meaning. It means “to steal a vehicle” usually a car. It’s the short form of “hijack”. You can have a car-jacking where someone forces you to get out of your own car and they then steal it by driving away. Hijacking is common with commercial airplane flights and boats, busses too. But when you jack a car you are stealing it. BTW, as slang, “jack” can mean “nothing.” I could say I know jack about carjacking or jacking up a car. And THAT’s what’s so funny!
Listen to my audioboo: https://audioboo.fm/boos/2085100-tip-top
What’s so funny about this? As you hear or read this joke, you may well be asking, “What hill are they talking about?” You might also conclude that the joke might be about real estate and figuring out which is a better location to place a house, over a hill, or under it. If you follow the news, then you realize that ‘under a hill’ could also be referring to a landslide or earthquake. In those cases the hill itself comes down and buries the house. But this is not a real estate joke and has nothing to do with houses, although, burial is a factor. The hill is a metaphor for life and time. We all live for a certain number of years. In our early years, as we develop, we learn many things; after we’ve learned them we put them to use. This can be physical knowledge like walking, running, biking, martial arts, climbing, etc or it can be intellectual knowledge that we learn in school or a trade or skill perhaps; or it can be an artistic skill such as writing, music or dancing. Eventually we arrive at the point, or perhaps several points in time that our various skills, talents and abilities peak, after that they start to decline, or “go downhill”. Every person has their own peaks and valleys in life. If we were to draw a line graph representing these events, it would look like a hill or mountain. It starts low and moves higher and higher with several peaks and eventually it all goes downwards. That’s when we’re “over the hill,” that is, past our peaks, our prime time. On the other hand, being ‘under a hill,’ is a metaphor for being buried in the ground, which is what will happen after we die. So you can see why I say it’s still better to be over the hill than under it. And THAT’s what’s so funny!
This joke was sent in by Bob Wiener
Listen to my audioboo: https://audioboo.fm/boos/2082068-peaking-duck
What’s so funny about this? It’s good to pun using new words. “Selfie” is definitely a post 2000 word. In fact, it’s not much older than a year or two. It’s completely understandable and the concept of self-involvement is nothing new; we just have a new word for it. People who came of age in the 1970’s were labeled members of the “Me Generation”. Whereas the 60’s were years of political activism, anti-war movements, civil rights, feminism, sexual liberation, gay liberation etc. - social causes involving societal change. In the 1970’s people became cynical about the changes that didn’t come about in the previous decade. Oh, there were plenty of changes, just not as massive as some hoped. In short, the revolution was not televised because there was no revolution. So in the 70’s people turned to gurus, self-development, business, money and their own pleasures. I’m not going to go through every decade since then. However, since the development of the internet and cell phone technology coupled with social media, we now have self-involvement taken to a hitherto unknown scale. People have plastered their entire lives all over facebook, as if anyone really cared. Once all their existing photos were digitized, it was only natural to start taking more and newer pictures. Cell phones all come equipped with still and video cameras making it ridiculously easy to take more and more pictures of stuff people are interested in. And it looks like they are mostly interested in themselves; hence we now have “The Selfie Generation”. In the joke we have the pun of someone picturing themselves, that is, imagining themselves taking pictures of themselves. In the photo we can see by the girl’s face that she is not interested in her room or how it looks, or anything else for that matter. There is only one thing on her mind, and that is herselfie. And THAT’s what’s so funny!
This joke came from punoftheday.com
Listen to my audioboo: https://audioboo.fm/boos/2079266-photo-op
The invention of language series: tense
What’s so funny about this? Sometimes I think it’s not fair to the folks who take all these photos and post them to the web for their own perfectly good reasons. What may not be fair is that I take these photos and add my own captions to create memes for MY own perfectly good reasons, which usually have absolutely nothing to do with why the photo was originally taken. Take today’s photo, for instance. We see a middle aged woman who is obviously unhappy with something, most likely the HOT plates she is holding. Maybe they don’t work well or at all. Maybe they get too hot and her hands get burned. Whatever, she wants to make some point about the hot plates. What’s on MY mind is a spoonerism that came from my wife saying something about a hot PLATE, and being careful not to burn the table. Note the difference in stress between the two. This difference totally changes the meaning of the two words. My wife was talking about a plain old plate that was very hot, probably because it had been in the oven. So she stressed the word PLATE. But stressing the word HOT in this two word phrase changes the meaning to a small round cooking appliance, usually electrified. That’s what the woman in the photo is holding. When I spoonerized “hot plate” in my mind, I came up with “plot hate.” Next I had to invent a context for the spoonerism to make sense. The word “plot” immediately conjures up the image or a movie, novel, or play. So I scoured the web for the right image. 99% of what I saw were photos of hot plates, of all sizes and shapes, appearing alone, by themselves. If I was going to talk about a movie, I needed people. I found amazingly few images of people with hot plates, but I did find the expressive woman in today’s photo. So this woman is now the star of a faux or fake movie, entitled “Hot Plate”, and I’m a faux or fake movie critic, coming up with a clever way to say I didn’t like the movie’s story line, or plot, hence, “Plot Hate.” And THAT’s what’s so funny!
Listen to my audioboo: https://audioboo.fm/boos/2076386-rated-pg