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My object all sublime

As an experiment, You Don’t Say will post an occasional short video presenting a joke or an anecdote literary or historical. Today’s “Surely you jest: The three brothers” is the first. The times have become so difficult, particularly for those of us who work at newspapers, that a source of innocent merriment did not seem out of place.

I do, however, have perpetually in my daughter’s oft-repeated admonishment, “You’re not as funny as you think you are.”

If you agree with Alice, by all means say so. But also feel free to recommend jokes or anecdotes that you would like to have told.



Posted by John McIntyre at 10:43 AM | | Comments (5)


Good stuff. Even better if one happens to be in Mick O'Shea's between Ash Wednesday and St. Pat's.

I think you're more funny than you think you are.

Very funny. Keep them coming.

I enjoyed your joke, and your telling of it is wonderful, but there seems to be a typo in the written introduction to this new and promising department, the name of which is, surely, "Surely You Jest" (the heading for the video installment is correct, I think).

JEM: Indeed. Fixed. Thanks.

I dunno ... I think "Alice" is a sweet name for the daughter of a bow-tie maven.

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About John McIntyre
John McIntyre, mild-mannered editor for a great metropolitan newspaper, has fussed over writers’ work, to sporadic expressions of gratitude, for thirty years. He is The Sun’s night content production manager and former head of its copy desk. He also teaches editing at Loyola University Maryland. A former president of the American Copy Editors Society, a native of Kentucky, a graduate of Michigan State and Syracuse, and a moderate prescriptivist, he writes about language, journalism, and arbitrarily chosen topics. If you are inspired by a spirit of contradiction, comment on the posts or write to him at
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