Monday, April 18, 2005

Sarcastic humor? Moi?
Today, I helped at an end-of-the-year "closure"/retreat for the Senior class of Bishop McGuinness High School (my alma mater) here in Oklahoma City. My main duty was to offer the Holy Mass in the morning for the start of this day.

One of the activities the kids had to do was a challenge for which they were divided into teams and given different tasks at about nine different stations. I was the moderator for the intellectual challenge. The groups would come and have their choice of one sealed envelope containing a question they were to solve in order to get points. Keep in mind that I had not participated in writing the questions and I had not even seen the questions before the students themselves opened the envelopes and worked on them. I only had the answer key provided to me. I thought I would share one of the questions and some of my sarcasm when the kids would ask me questions about the question-writer's intentions (which, of course, I had no knowledge of since I was only moderating this particular challenge).

The question was something like this. "It is common knowledge that when smoking a cigar a portion of it is necessarily left unsmoked -- the butt. Five cigar butts is roughly equivalent to one cigar. You have 25 cigar butts. Putting the butts together, how many cigars could you then smoke?"

The kids were doing the math and trying to see if there was any trick to the question and they kept asking me if these were standard-sized cigars etc. I finally said: "Kids, if you are asking me what I think about this, I would say this is an uncultured act of desperation to be piecing together cigar butts in order to make a cigar. If that is what is going on, I would say this is a clear indication that it is time to get a job and buy real cigars like any other sensible person would do!"

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