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Bumper sticker seen in Cambridge, Mass: "Re-elect President Gore in
WILE E. COYOTE, Plaintiff
THE ACME COMPANY, INC., Defendant
In the United States District Court,
Case No. B191294, Judge Joan Kujava, Presiding
Plaintiff, Mr. Wiley E. Coyote, a resident of Arizona and contiguous
states, does hereby bring suit for damages against the Acme Company,
manufacturer and retail distributor of assorted merchandise,
incorporated in Delaware and doing business in every state, district
and territory. Mr. Coyote seeks compensation for personal injuries,
loss of business income, and mental suffering caused as a direct
result the actions and/or gross negligence of said company, under
Title 15 of the United States Code, Chapter 47, section 2072,
subsection (a), relating to product liability.
Mr. Coyote states that on eighty-five separate occasions he has
purchased of the Acme Company (hereinafter, "Defendant"), through that
company's mail-order department, certain products which did cause him
bodily injury due to defects in manufacture or improper cautionary
labeling. Sales slips made out to Mr. Coyote as proof of purchase are
at present in the possession of the Court, marked Exhibit A. Such
injuries sustained by Mr. Coyote have temporarily restricted his
ability to make a living in his profession of predator. Mr. Coyote is
self-employed and thus not eligible for Worker's Compensation.
Mr. Coyote states that on December 13th he received of Defendant via
parcel post one Acme Rocket Sled. The intention of Mr. Coyote was to
use the Rocket Sled to aid him in pursuit of his prey. Upon receipt of
the Rocket Sled Mr. Coyote removed it from its wooden shipping crate
and, sighting his prey in the distance, activated the ignition. As Mr.
Coyote gripped the handlebars, the Rocket Sled accelerated with such
sudden and precipitate force as to stretch Mr. Coyote's forelimbs to a
length of fifty feet. Subsequently, the rest of Mr. Coyote's body shot
forward with a violent jolt, causing severe strain to his back and
neck and placing him unexpectedly astride the Rocket Sled.
Disappearing over the horizon at such speed as to leave a diminishing
jet trail along his path, the Rocket Sled soon brought Mr. Coyote
abreast of his prey. At that moment the animal he was pursuing veered
sharply to the right. Mr. Coyote vigorously attempted to follow this
maneuver but was unable to do so, due to poorly designed steering and
a faulty or nonexistent braking system. Shortly thereafter, the
unchecked progress of the Rocket Sled brought it and Mr. Coyote into
collision with the side of a mesa.
Paragraph One of the Report of Attending Physician (Exhibit B),
prepared by Dr. Ernest Grosscup, M.D., D.O., details the multiple
fractures, contusions and tissue damage suffered by Mr. Coyote as a
result of this collision. Repair of the injuries required a full
bandage around the head (excluding the ears), a neck brace, and full
or partial casts on all four legs.
Hampered by these injuries, Mr. Coyote was nevertheless obliged to
support himself. With this in mind, he purchased of Defendant as an
aid to mobility one pair of rocket skates. When he attempted to use
this product, however, he became involved in an accident remarkably
similar to that which occurred with the Rocket Sled. Again, Defendant
sold over the counter, without caveat, a product which attached
powerful jet engines (in this case, two) to inadequate vehicles, with
little or no provision for passenger safety. Encumbered by his heavy
casts, Mr. Coyote lost control of the Rocket Skates soon after
strapping them on, and collided with a roadside billboard so violently
as to leave a hole in the shape of his full silhouette.
Mr. Coyote states that on occasions too numerous to list in this
document he has suffered mishaps with explosives purchased of the
Defendant: the Acme "Little Giant" Firecracker, the Acme Self-Guided
Aerial Bomb, etc. (For a full listing see the Acme Mail Order
Explosives Catalogue and attached deposition, entered into evidence as
Exhibit C.) Indeed, it is safe to say that not once has an explosive
purchased of Defendant by Mr. Coyote performed in an expected manner.
To cite just one example: At the expense of much time and personal
effort, Mr. Coyote constructed around the outer rim of a butte a
wooden trough beginning at the top of the butte and spiraling downward
around it to some few feet above a black X painted on the desert
floor. The trough was designed in such a way that a spherical
explosive of the type sold by Defendant would roll easily and swiftly
down to the point of detonation indicated by the X. Mr. Coyote placed
a generous pile of birdseed directly on the X, and then, carrying the
spherical Acme Bomb (Catalogue #78-832), climbed to the top of the
butte. Mr. Coyote's prey, seeing the bird seed, approached, and Mr.
Coyote proceeded to light the fuse. In an instant, the fuse burned
down to the stem, causing the bomb to detonate.
In addition to reducing all Mr. Coyote's careful preparation to
naught, the premature detonation of Defendant's product resulted in
the following disfigurements to Mr. Coyote:
1. Severe singeing of the hair on the head, neck and muzzle.
2. Sooty discoloration.
3. Fracture of the left ear at the stem, causing the ear to dangle in
the aftershock with a creaking noise.
4. Full or partial combustion of whiskers, producing kinking,
frazzling, and ashy disintegration.
5. Radical widening of the eyes, due to brow and lid charring.
We come now to the Acme Spring-Powered Shoes. The remains of a pair of
these purchased by Mr. Coyote on June 23rd are Plaintiff's Exhibit D.
Selected fragments have been shipped to the metallurgical laboratories
of the University of California at Santa Barbara for analysis, but to
date no explanation has been found for this product's sudden and
extreme malfunction. As advertised by Defendant, this product is
simplicity itself: two wood-and-metal sandals, each attached to
milled-steel springs of high tensile strength and compressed into a
tightly coiled position by a cocking device with a lanyard release.
Mr. Coyote believed that this product would enable him to pounce upon
his prey in the initial moments of the chase, when swift reflexes are
at a premium.
To increase the shoes' thrusting power still further, Mr. Coyote
affixed them by their bottoms to the side of a large boulder. Adjacent
to the boulder was a path which Mr. Coyote's prey was known to
frequent. Mr. Coyote put his hind feet in the wood-and-metal sandals
and crouched in readiness, his right forepaw holding firmly to the
lanyard release. Within a short time Mr. Coyote's prey did indeed
appear on the path coming toward him. Unsuspecting, the prey stopped
near Mr. Coyote, well within range of the springs at full extension.
Mr. Coyote gauged the distance with care and proceeded to pull the
At this point, Defendant's product should have thrust Mr. Coyote
forward and away from the boulder. Instead, for reasons yet unknown,
the Acme Spring-Powered Shoes thrust the boulder away from Mr. Coyote.
As the intended prey looked on unharmed, Mr. Coyote hung suspended in
air. Then the twin springs recoiled, bringing Mr. Coyote to a violent
feet-first collision with the boulder, the full weight of his head and
forequarters falling upon his lower extremities.
The force of this impact then caused the springs to rebound, whereupon
Mr. Coyote was thrust skyward. A second recoil and collision followed.
The boulder, meanwhile, which was roughly ovoid in shape, had begun to
bounce down a hillside, the coiling and recoiling of the springs
adding to its velocity. At each bounce, Mr. Coyote came into contact
with the boulder, or the boulder came into contact with Mr. Coyote, or
both came into contact with the ground. As the grade was a long one,
this process continued for some time.
A sequence of collisions resulted in systemic physical damage to Mr.
Coyote, viz., flattening of the cranium, sideways replacement of the
tongue, reduction of length of legs and upper body, and compression of
vertebrae from base of tail to head. Repetition of blows along a
vertical axis produced a series of regular horizontal folds in Mr.
Coyote's body tissues -- a rare and painful condition which caused Mr.
Coyote to expand upward and contract downward alternately as he
walked, and to emit off-key, accordionlike wheezing with every step.
The distracting and embarrassing nature of this symptom has been a
major impediment to Mr. Coyote's pursuit of a normal social life.
As the Court is no doubt aware, Defendant has a virtual monopoly of
manufacture and sale of goods required by Mr. Coyote's work. It is our
contention that Defendant has used its market advantage to the
detriment of the consumer of such specialized products as itching
powder, giant kites, Burmese tiger traps, anvils, and
two-hundred-foot-long rubber bands. Much as he has come to distrust
Defendant's products, Mr. Coyote has no other domestic source of
supply to which to turn. One can only wonder what our trading partners
in Western Europe and Japan would make of such a situation, where a
giant company is allowed to victimize the consumer in the most
reckless and wrongful manner over and over again.
Mr. Coyote respectfully requests that the Court regard these larger
economic implications and assess punitive damages in the amount of
seventeen million dollars. In addition, Mr. Coyote seeks actual
damages (missed meals, medical expenses, days lost from professional
occupation) of one million dollars; general damages (mental suffering,
injury to reputation) of twenty million dollars; and attorney's fees
of seven hundred and fifty thousand dollars. Total damages:
thirty-eight million seven hundred and fifty thousand dollars. By
awarding Mr. Coyote the full amount, this Court will censure
Defendant, its directors, officers, shareholders, successors, and
assigns, in the only language they understand, and reaffirm the right
of the individual predator to equal protection under the law.
Confucious say: "Man who goes to sleep
with sex on mind wakes up with solution
The Yuppie showered a Yuppette with gifts for over a month. He
took her to fancy restaurants and expensive resorts. Finally, he
proposed, "Bernie, if you will marry me, I have enough money
to provide you with anything your little heart desires."
"Sorry John." she replied. "I'm not ready to settle down yet.
And besides, you can't buy my love, but if the price is right, I
might see my way clear to rent you some."
Laboratory Rabbit Freedom
A rabbit one day managed to break free from the laboratory where he
had been born and
brought up. As he scurried away from the fencing of the compound, he
felt grass under his
little feet and saw the dawn breaking for the first time in his life.
'Wow, this is great,' he
thought. It wasn't long before he came to a hedge and, after squeezing
under it he saw a
wonderful sight lots of other bunny rabbits, all free and nibbling at
the lush grass.
'Hey,' he called. 'I'm a rabbit from the laboratory and I've just
escaped. Are you wild
'Yes. Come and join us,' they cried.
Our friend hopped over to them and started eating the grass. It tasted
so good. 'What else
do you wild rabbits do?' he asked.
'Well,' one of them said. 'You see that field there? It's got carrots
growing in it. We dig
them up and eat them.'
This, he couldn't resist and he spent the next hour eating the most
succulent carrots. They
Later, he asked them again, 'What else do you do?'
'You see that field there? It's got lettuce growing in it. We eat them
The lettuce tasted just as good and he returned a while later
completely full. 'Is there
anything else you guys do?' he asked.
One of the other rabbits came a bit closer to him and spoke softly.
'There's one other thing
you must try. You see those rabbits there,' he said, pointing to the
far corner of the field.
'They're girls. We poke them. Go and try it.'
Well, our friend spent the rest of the morning screwing his little
heart out until, completely
knackered, he staggered back over to the guys.
'That was fantastic,' he panted.
'So are you going to live with us then?' one of them asked.
'I'm sorry, I had a great time but I can't.'
The wild rabbits all stared at him, a bit surprised. 'Why? We thought
you liked it here.'
'I do,' our friend replied. 'But I must get back to the laboratory.
I'm dying for a cigarette.'
PS. Congratulations on winning the World Series of Poker Main Event.
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