Humour for Students
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Need something entertaining?  Here's some funnies, geared towards students, snagged from various places on the internet.   Send me yours if you got something good to share.


You just might be a graduate student if...
...you spend more on books than on tuition.
...you actually hope your professor assigns homework.
...you get a 3-hour final with 5 questions or less.
...the words "free time" are unfamiliar to you.
...you spend Saturday morning waiting for the library to open.
...you've memorized your professors' home phone numbers.
...your professors know your home phone number.
...more than 25% of your textbook is "left as an exercise for the reader."
...you are on a first-name basis with everyone on the library staff.
...you can analyze the significance of appliances you cannot operate.
...your carrel is better decorated than your apartment.
...you have ever, as a folklore project, attempted to track the progress of your own joke across the Internet.
...you are startled to meet people who neither need nor want to read.
...you have ever brought a scholarly article to a bar.
...you rate coffee shops by the availability of outlets for your laptop.
...everything reminds you of something in your discipline.
...you have ever discussed academic matters at a sporting event.
...you have ever spent more than $50 on photocopying while researching a single paper.
...there is a microfilm reader in the library that you consider "yours."
...you actually have a preference between microfilm and microfiche.
...you can tell the time of day by looking at the traffic flow at the library.
...you look forward to summers because you're more productive without the distraction of classes.
...you regard ibuprofen as a vitamin.
...you consider all papers to be works in progress.
...professors don't really care when you turn in work anymore.
...you find the bibliographies of books more interesting than the actual text.
...you have given up trying to keep your books organized and are now just trying to keep them all in the same general area.
...you have accepted guilt as an inherent feature of relaxation.
...you reflexively start analyzing those greek letters before you realize that it's a sorority sweatshirt, not an equation.
...you find yourself explaining to children that you are in "20th grade".
...you start refering to stories like "Snow White et al."
...you frequently wonder how long you can live on pasta without getting scurvy.
...you look forward to taking some time off to do laundry.
...you have more photocopy cards than credit cards.
...you wonder if APA style >
The Top Ten Lies Told by Graduate Students

(taken from the Harvard Crimson)

10. It doesn't bother me at all that my college roommate is making $80,000 a year on Wall Street.
9. I'd be delighted to proofread your book/chapter/article.
8. My work has a lot of practical importance.
7. I would never date an undergraduate.
6. Your latest article was so inspiring.
5. I turned down a lot of great job offers to come here.
4. I just have one more book to read and then I'll start writing.
3. The department is giving me so much support.
2. My job prospects look really good.
1. No really, I'll be out of here in only two more years.

Top Five Lies Told by Teaching Fellows:

5. I'm not going to grant any extensions.
4. Call me any time. I'm always available.
3. It doesn't matter what I think; write what you believe.
2. Think of the midterm as a diagnostic tool.
1. My other section is much better prepared than you guys.



Ask and ye shall receive
(to the tune of "If I only had a brain"):

 If I only had a thesis
Then they wouldn't call me specious.
They would not reject my claim.
Do Do Doot Da Doot Da Dum
I would write it and defend it
I would leave and that would end it.
I'd be off to win my fame.


Why God never received a PhD:

1. He had only one major publication.
2. It was in Hebrew.
3. It had no references.
4. It wasn't published in a refereed journal.
5. Some even doubt he wrote it by himself.
6. It may be true that he created the world, but what has he done since then?
7. His cooperative efforts have been quite limited.
8. The scientific community has had a hard time replicating his results.
9. He never applied to the ethics board for permission to use human subjects.
10. When one experiment went awry he tried to cover it by drowning his subjects.
11. When subjects didn't behave as predicted, he deleted them from the sample.
12. He rarely came to class, just told students to read the book.
13. Some say he had his son teach the class.
14. He expelled his first two students for learning.
15. Although there were only 10 requirements, most of his students failed his tests.
16. His office hours were infrequent and usually held on a mountain top.
17. No record of working well with colleagues.


This letter was first written by a graduate student in Europe in 1954 and has traveled around the world at least 16 times. At first I wouldn't believe that it would work, but after trying it, I am now a believer in its mystical and magical power.
This letter was received by a graduate student in Chicago, IL in 1973 and within two weeks, he had completed a 5600 page doctoral dissertation and began a career which lead to a Nobel Prize. A few years later, another graduate student received this letter and sent it to 5 of her friends, and she too completed a 3100 page paper which is continues to grow to this day!
Simply write five pages of text on the given subjects for each person on this list. Than place your name in slot #1 and move everyone else's name down one space. Send this letter to ten of your colleagues, and within a month, you too will have a thesis or disertation which your advisor can choke on if he or she doesn't go blind or break his or her back first.
  • Bernard T. Donovan, M.S. student in biochemistry
  • EPR spectroscopy of crud from my refrigerator
  • James C. Messier, PhD. student in political science
  • The Cuban Missile Crisis: What if Nixon were president?
  • Frances K. Allen, M.A. student in music theory
  • Development of polyphonic forms from Gregorian Chant
  • Penny S. Jordan, PhD student in computer science
  • Is Windows 95 merely Mac 84?
  • Thomas J. Quinn, MBA student
  • Bears and Bulls in the stock market, but what about Sox and Cubs?
    The last person who received this letter and did not respond was tormented by receiving 100-level teaching assignments until he was 40 years old. Today he works as a clerk for the Little-Plastic-Pizza-Table Museum in Cleveland, OH, making minimum wage and regretting his terrible decision not to perpetuate this letter.



    Graduate Admissions Committee
    Department of Psychology
    Big Deal University
    Collegeville, USA

    Dear Committee Members:

    Thanks for your letter of March 30. After careful consideration, I regret to inform you that I am unable to accept your rejection at this time.

    This year I have been particularly fortunate in receiving an unusually large number of rejection letters. With such a varied and promising field of schools, it is impossible for me to accept all refusals.

    Despite your outstanding record and previous experience in rejecting applicants, I find that your rejection does not meet my current career needs. Consequently, I will begin taking classes as a graduate student in your department this August. I look forward to seeing you then.

    Best of luck in rejecting future applicants.

    Sincerely Yours,
    [Name Withheld]



    Top Ten things that suck MORE than writing a psych thesis:
  • Getting hit by a truck
  • Being stranded in the Sahara without water
  • Falling in a pool of alligators
  • Discovering that your house was built on top of a graveyard
  • Hearing voices in your head
  • Being eaten by turtles
  • Getting a package from the Unabomber
  • Studying thermodyamic engineering
  • Writing a dissertation
  •  And the number one thing that sucks more than writing a thesis:
  • Not graduating
  • So I guess I'll get back to work.


    The Top 16 Rejected Scientific Papers
     16. Imminent Global Destruction: Why Tea Leone Won't Return My Calls
    15. A Study of Who Can Shoot Milk Out of His Nose Farther, Me or My Friend, Matt
    14. Charles Nelson Reilly: Testosterone, Androgen and the Hypermasculine of the Species
    13. Highway to Hell: The Deadly Link Between Air Guitar and Young Male WASP Traffic Fatalities
    12. Post Scripted Annotations of the Reader's Maternal Parent Pertaining to Promiscuous Coital Activities for Remuneration: Your Mother's a Ho
    11. Abnormal Behavioral Models of Slacker Office-Publishing Lackeys: Why it Took Me 5 Friggin' Days to Get This Paper Back From Kinkos
    10. Turning Crap to Gold: The New QVC Alchemy
    9. Spewing Profits: Are the Bath Tissue and Olestra Industries in Bed Together?
    8. Effects of a Huge, No-Strings Government Research Grant on Frank Farel of Long Island, NY... About a Million Bucks, Say
    7. How Much Fibrous Xylem Could a Marmota Monax Slough if a Marmota Monax Could Slough Fibrous Xylem?
    6. Seruc rof aixelsyD
    5. WHAM!: Production of Liquid by Means of Manual Stimulation of a Cylinder
    4. Ants in my Pants: A Personal Case Study
    3. Observed Effects of Viagra on Bone Regeneration
    2. Cats, Landings, and the Empire State Building: How High Is TOO High?
    1. She Blinded Me With Acid: The Do's and Don'ts of Lab Assistant Harassment


    Useful Research Phrases and what they Really Mean
    "It has long been known" . . .
    [I didn't look up the original reference.]
    "A definite trend is evident" . . .
    [These data are practically meaningless.]
    "Of great theoretical and practical importance" . . .
    [Interesting to me.]
    "While it has not been possible to provide definite answers
    to these questions" . . .
    [An unsuccessful experiment but I still have to get it published.]
    "Three of the samples were chosen for detailed study" . . .
    [The results of the others didn't make any sense.]
    "Typical results are shown" . . .
    [The best results are shown.]
    "These results will be shown in a subsequent report" . . .
    [I might get around to this sometime if I'm pushed.]
    "The most reliable results are those obtained by Jones" . . .
    [He was my graduate assistant.]
    "It is believed that" . . .
    [I think]
    "It is generally believed that" . . .
    [A couple of other guys think so, too.]
    "It is clear that much additional work will be required before
    a complete understanding occurs" . . .
    [I don't understand it.]
    "Correct within an order of magnitude" . . .
    [Wrong]
    "It is hoped that this study will stimulate further
    investigations in this field" . . .
    [This is a lousy paper, but so are all the others on this
    miserable topic.]
    "Thanks are due to Joe Blotz for assistance with the experiment
    and to George Frink for valuable assistance" . . .
    [Blotz did the work and Frink explained to me what it meant.]
    "A careful analysis of obtainable data" . . .
    [Three pages of notes were obliterated when I knocked over a
    glass of beer.]



    What Professors Say and What They Really Mean

    "My office hours are by appointment only."
    (I like to get out of here early.)

    "Attendance is required and will be counted in your grade."
    (I'm so boring that no one would show up otherwise.)

    "This year I'll be scaling the grades."
    (I just passed tenure review.)

    "Bring the text to class."
    (I don't have a clue how to lecture--we'll just kill time with group read-alongs.)

    "We'll be spending a fair amount of time on this important  concept."
    (This was my dissertation topic.)

    "This paper needs some minor revision."
    (I never actually got around to reading this.)

    "Not much is known about ..."
    (I don't know anything about ...)

    "Well, that answer would be beyond the scope of this course."
    (I haven't a clue.)

    "This won't be on the test."
    (Nap time!)

    "Please note the last day to withdraw."
    (The midterm's gonna ruin you.)

    "You won't be able to sell the text back to the bookstore."
    (My contract wasn't renewed with the university.)

    "Well, it was on the syllabus."
    (I'll hold you responsible for this even though I forgot about it myself.)

    "The test will all be multiple-choice."
    (I take questions directly from the study guide and have grad students do all my grading.)

    "Don't write on the question sheet."
    (I'm so lazy, I just use the same exams every lousy semester.)
     

    "The final will be comprehensive."
    (I'll expect you to recapitulate in two hours everything I couldn't fully cover, myself, in 15 weeks.)

    "Let's go over the exam."
    (Half of you failed.)