HUMOR & Top 3 TED Talks to watch when you need a pick-me-up.

Commentary by Dr. Whitesel: TED Talks are a great resource to learn communication skills, especially if you were a speaker or a preacher. Here are three videos that are exceptional examples curated by Winnie Wang of The Daily Californian.

Top 3 TED Talks to watch when you need a pick-me-up.

by Winnie Wang, The Daily Californian, 4/21/22.

Inside the mind of a master procrastinator

…Tim Urban hits all the checkmarks in his speech: funny, informative, relatable. If you’re looking to laugh and learn a valuable lesson at the same time, this is the perfect video.

How to speak so people want to listen

… Julian Treasure’s insight on how to get anyone to listen to you while listening to others taught me how to empathize with people in a way I had never tried before… To top it all off, it comes with a handy acronym that makes these tips easy to remember.

Why people believe they can’t draw

… Graham Shaw walks the audience through a couple of simple techniques to draw cartoons. In doing so, he demonstrates how within a few minutes anyone can learn how to draw, thereby dispelling the belief that you can’t draw. This process offers valuable insight into how to view new skills and challenges in the world.

Read more at …

CONTEXT & How NOT to Exegete It (a humorous video).

Commentary by Dr. Whitesel: In a course I taught at Kingswood University in Sussex, NB, Canada we discussed cultural exegesis.

Kevin, a Presbyterian pastor and one of my students, provided a link to this video. It shows that even the movie industry has noticed that we often culturally exegete insufficiently and/or poorly.

Watch this video as a reminder of what not to do:

Retrieved from

TRADITION & Humorous examples of the differences between the rule of the law and the spirit of the law.

Commentary by Dr. Whitesel: In Jesus’ discussions about the Pharisees, he often pointed out that they were meticulous in obeying law, but they did not practice the purpose or spirit behind it (Mark 2:3–28, 3:1–6; 2 Corinthians 3:6).

A humorous example comes from a recent New York City law that permitted on the subway only those dogs that could fit in a bag. Now that’s the letter of the law. But the spirit of the law was to keep large dogs, and they’re leavings 😉 away from the subways.

However, enjoy below some of the ways that creative New Yorkers obeyed the letter of the law, and not the spirit.

Frames Etc. Facebook, 9/24/21

HUMOR & Young Person Is Clueless About How People Lived Before E-Mail, And His Texts With An Older Person Go Viral

by Mindaugas Balčiauskas and
Rokas Laurinavičius , BoredPanda, 10/7/20.

Kathy Torrence, 52, learned that her son, 21, is no different. Recently, he texted Kathy, asking, “How did any of college work before email?”

Read more at …

DANGER & Toilets and air fresheners hurt more people than sharks. #ILoveSurfing

Commentary by Dr. Whitesel: As an avid surfer, people often ask me if I’m worried about a shark attack. I tell them no, I put my trust in God first. And secondly, even among people who go to the beach the chance of being killed by shark is 1 in 11.5 million. Here are National Geographic’s even more remarkable statistics about some more dangerous household encounters.

by Meg Gleason, National Geograohic, 11/22/11.

…Who knew toilets and air fresheners could be so dangerous? Well, at least statistically speaking it appears sharks seem to pose less of a threat than many things we encounter every day.

  • In 1996, toilets injured 43,000 Americans. Sharks injured 13…
  • 1n 1996, buckets and pails injured almost 11,000 Americans.  Sharks injured 13.
  • In 1996, room fresheners injured 2,600 Americans.  Sharks injured 13.
  • The U.S. averages 19 shark attacks a year.  Lightning kills about 41 people a year in coastal states alone.
  • Since 1959, Florida has had nine shark attack fatalities.  Lightning fatalities = 459…
  • For every human killed by a shark, humans kill two million sharks.
  • Anyone who has swum in New Smyrna Beach, Florida (shark capital of the world) has likely been within 10 feet of a shark.
  • Some sharks can live for a year without eating, surviving on the oil stored in their livers.

Read more at …

GENERATIONS & Mr Potato Head gets fired, replaced by his millennial counterpart Mr Avo Head per #Hasbro (#AprilFools ;-) #SeeThePicture

by Rachael Thompson, Mashable, 4/1/19, April Fools Day.

Mr Avo Head, suitable for all millennials.
Mr Avo Head, suitable for all millennials.

On April 1, 2019, also known as April Fools’ Day, Hasbro announced the termination of our spud-like pal’s contract to make way for his millennial replacement, Mr Avo Head. 

“It’s no guaccident that the avocado was chosen to replace the carby potato,” reads Hasbro’s statement. “Hasbro has announced that Mr Potato Head will no longer be a star carb character and will be replaced with his soon to be Insta-famous rival, Mr Avo Head.”

Read more at …

HUMOR & Some of the greatest April Fools’ pranks of all time

by Todd Leopold, CNN, 4/1/18.

Pasta grows on trees

On April 1, 1957, the BBC TV show “Panorama” ran a segment about the Swiss spaghetti harvest enjoying a “bumper year” thanks to mild weather and the elimination of the spaghetti weevil. Many credulous Britons were taken in, and why not? The story was on television — then a relatively new invention — and Auntie Beeb would never lie, would it? 
The story was ranked the No. 1 April Fools’ hoax of all time by the Museum of Hoaxeswebsite — a fine source for all things foolish. 

Big Ben goes digital

The Brits are masters of April Fools’ gags, and in 1980, the BBC’s overseas service said the iconic clock tower was getting an update. Thejoke did not go over well, and the BBC apologized. That hasn’t stopped it from popping up again in the digital era, however

The Taco Liberty Bell

On April 1, 1996 a full page ad appeared in six major American newspapers (The Philadelphia Inquirer, New York Times, Washington Post, Chicago Tribune, Dallas Morning News, and USA Today) announcing that the fast food chain Taco Bell had purchased the Liberty Bell. The full text of the ad read:
Taco Bell Buys The Liberty Bell
In an effort to help the national debt, Taco Bell is pleased to announce that we have agreed to purchase the Liberty Bell, one of our country’s most historic treasures. It will now be called the “Taco Liberty Bell” and will still be accessible to the American public for viewing. While some may find this controversial, we hope our move will prompt other corporations to take similar action to do their part to reduce the country’s debt.

In a separate press release, Taco Bell explained that the Liberty Bell would divide its time between Philadelphia and the Taco Bell headquarters in Irvine. It compared the purchase to the adoption of highways by corporations. Taco Bell argued that it was simply “going one step further by purchasing one of the country’s greatest historic treasures.” The company boasted, “Taco Bell’s heritage and imagery have revolved around the symbolism of the bell. Now we’ve got the crown jewel of bells.”


The Sun’s 50p poo piece.
The Sun’s 50p poo piece. Photograph: oanslow1/The Sun

The Sun, meanwhile, claimed there would be a Royal Mint collection of coin designs based on emojis, including a poo emoji 50p, while the Daily Star reckons we’ll now be able to get beer on the NHS. Apparently “Guinness is good for you” after all.


Daily Mail’s April Fool cat flap.
Daily Mail’s April Fool cat flap. Photograph: DAILY MAIL

The Daily Mail had news that Larry the Downing Street cat was getting its own catflap in the famous door to No 10.


Pick of the tech jokes this year is Google Tulip. With an extremely detailed technical spec and glossy promotional video, this development allows you to talk to your tulips, and discover just what it is they are thinking about. Spoiler alert: sunshine, soil and water.


And Cambridgeshire police are introducing the drug sniffer bunny.

Special Constabulary (@CambsCopsSC)

After 6 weeks training meet the forces new drugs sniffer rabbit Benni be sure to say hello if you see us on patrol#SSThomas

April 1, 2019

Read more at …

(Image credit: Ali Kameri / EyeEm / Getty Images) 

Okay, there are going to be people out there who want this to be real. With elaborate dog birthday parties (including requested gifts) already being a thing, there are bound to be disappointed dog event planners who were hoping that Wayfair’s dog wedding registry launch was legit. Dubbed “Groom’d,” the placeholder site suggests that dog couples will love putting together a list of items they want for their new joint lives—including décor—because, of course.


From the press release: “We’re delighted to introduce the next generation wedding registry with a platform created just for dogs looking to take their puppy love to the next level.”


Forget candles—scented wallpaper is the new fragrance trend we wish we could have at home. A “beta tester” used to rub citrus on her walls, but Spoonflower’s Orange Blossom saves her from the “pulpy mess.” We wouldn’t be mad at lining our walls with the Aloe Eucalyptus and Summer Rose scents, either.


Read more at …



MANAGEMENT & 8 Differences Between Strong & Weak Managers, Told Through Cartoons #ForbesMagazine

by John Youshaei, Forbes Magazine, 7/13/17.

1. Strong Managers Focus On Progress; Weak Managers Focus On Process

cartoon from

Yes, you need some process to keep employees in check. But when you have too much, you kill creativity. This is what ultimately drives the success of any organization. Don’t destroy it. Don’t be afraid to adjust or remove processes to help your team push the envelope. Encouraging progress, not process, is essential for your company’s long term growth…

3. Strong Managers Compete With Themselves; Weak Managers Compete With Others

cartoon from

4. Strong Managers Work For A Cause; Weak Managers Work For Applause

cartoon from

6. Strong Managers Respect Your Time; Weak Managers Waste It

cartoon from

Read more at …

cartoons humor comic

WORSHIP & A leadership exercise comparing worship in different eras (Yikes! The 80s are Back ;-)

Commentary by Dr. Whitesel: This is an exercise about understanding how different cultures worship. My students enjoy it, so I thought I would post it here. Here is how the leadership exercise works:

Watch this video:

It is a humorous video that actually teaches an important cultural lesson too. It is by the Christian band called Glad. They were known for great vocals (and probably also for 80s haircuts 😉

(the video seems to have disappeared, but here is the audio version.)

But aside from their fashion statement, the group makes a good cultural point in this video. Write down a paragraph regarding the point of their video in your mind.

This is an exercise to allow you to dig deeper into cultural patterns and why they differ. So what is the lesson from this video about culture, when we recognize culture is comprised of behaviors, ideas and products (Hiebert, 1997)?

Here is a more recent version of the video to will enjoy also:

And, for a final bit of humor here is a puppet ministry visualizing the song.)

HUMOR & 3 Envelopes for the displaced pastor

by David Briggs, Huffington Post, 6/1/16.

There is a popular joke about displaced pastors preparing three envelopes for their successor to be opened each time the new person runs into trouble.

The first time it happens, the new pastor opens the envelope marked No. 1 and it reads, “Blame your predecessor.”

The second time, the pastor finds a note instructing him to, “Blame denominational policy.”

It is not long before the pastor once again finds himself on the wrong side of the congregation. This time, the note inside reads, “Draw up three envelopes. …”

Read more at …

HUMOR & Costume Ideas for the Church Halloween Festival #MatthewPierce


Probably the most important part of Christianity is going to Halloween Festivals at church that don’t use the word “Halloween.”  … And listen, nothing is more embarrassing than hitting the Harvest Festival in a bedsheet shepherd costume.  Freshen it up, girl.  God didn’t give us grace so that we could be embarrassed by the pagans and their fancy costumes.  Here are some ideas so that you can turn some heads when you roll up to the Trunk-or-Treat at First Methodist.


DPDTXD Hipster couple talking and drinking coffee to go at university campus

What could be more terrifying to your affluent, conservative WASP-nest of a Bible Belt church than if you and your spouse showed up to the Fall Festival as a couple of free trade coffee-swilling, Bernie Sanders-quoting progressive believers? IMPORTANT: you must wear either the “Look How Smart I Am Glasses” or the “I Might Be Homeless Headwear,” but not both.  Furthermore, to complete the ensemble, work the following buzzwords into your conversations:

  • problematic
  • safe space
  • biblical socialism
  • love wins
  • empowerment
  • patriarchy
  • mutual submission
  • bagels [progressives love bagels; no one knows why]

The Calvinist


Terrify your friends by showing up at your church’s Fall Festival as this scowling, grumbling theological warrior.  Furrow those brows, let the corners of your mouth sink down into your jowls, and wave your ESV MacArthur Study Bible at lesser believers.  Tootsie Rolls? Nope, not biblical. Candy corn? Abomination… Rice cakes and Nutella are good enough for Al Mohler and by golly they’re good enough for me.

The Southern Baptist


Keep those shades on you at all times, baby.  If you don’t have flip up lenses then get you a frat boy strap and wear the shades around your neck.  Throw a couple of twenties into the offering plate.  Feels good, don’t it?  Take the harmony on “Joy Unspeakable” and really belt it out.  Make them hear you up in the choir row.

The Youth Pastor


Add some accessories.  AND THEN ADD SOME MORE.  Grow some sweet facial hair and then break out the bleach.  Roll up your sleeves.  Are belts keeping you from relating to today’s generation? LEAVE YOUR BELT AT HOME AND UNTUCK YOUR SHIRT.

More great humor at …

And … This Year’s Most Popular Constume?


Ed 2

My colleague and friend Ed Stetzer may be this year’s most unexpected (and underrated) Halloween Festival Costume.


METAPHOR & A Domino Effect Video: “Who am I, and where do I belong?” narrated by Sharon Koh

Commentary by Dr. Whitesel:  One of my recent DMin students at Fuller Seminary, Rev. Sharon Koh, shared an amazing “domino effect” video that uses OT metaphors to teach “It is not who you are, but whose you are.”  Watch this intriguing video (I guarantee you won’t stop it once it starts).

Here is the link to the video:

COMMUNICATION & Siri TV by Apple? An Early Look. #Tripp&Tyler #MoreGoodCleanHumor

Commentary by Dr. Whitesel:  Tripp & Tyler are two humorists that utilize short videos to capture their satire. You can find several of the videos I use in my courses to teach students by clicking “humor” in the “Tag Cloud” (right sidebar) in  Here is their take on Apple’s comprehension-impaired PA: Siri.