A teacher at school recently passed away from cancer. This particular teacher was the advisor for the Community of Caring group in which students plan and conduct various service projects throughout the year for members of the community.

Today, students at the school clad themselves in pink and the basketball team and pep band will have a “pink out” game to show their support for this teacher. As further proof that the students and administration at this school understand and care about their community, their marquee had a special message:

Sign for Ms Daily jan292016 small

Teenagers are awesome.


A few weeks ago, the teenagers in our church had a lesson on honesty. One topic that came up was how people will sometimes lie about their lack of knowledge regarding certain popular trends. For instance, one late night talk show has sent someone disguised as a reporter to various big events such as music galas and movie awards. This pretend reporter will then make up names of rock groups or movie titles and ask various people their opinion about them. Instead of admitting they never heard of these (nonexistent) groups or titles, the people cover their ignorance by offering praise that is just as fake as the band or movie they are promoting. (Fake reporter promoting nonexistent band: “I heard ‘Snowblast and the Ponies’ is going to perform today. What do you think of their sound?” Ignorant crowd member: “Oh, yeah. They’re sound is just so raw and real. I’m so excited to hear them live.”) I’m always amazed at the desperate measures people will go to in order to look smart, as though admitting ignorance would somehow be demoralizing for them. However, lying simultaneously proves their ignorance and makes them look bad, thus defeating their purpose for lying in the first place. The truth would have allowed them to keep their integrity.

I am not embarrassed to admit that I am not up on the current trends, and I am going to share some of my findings with you interested readers today. Maybe some of you can enlighten me, or share in my ignorance. Either way, you’ll get a good chuckle.

Over the past few months, a few marquees have displayed messages that are completely foreign to me. I do realize these are most likely advertisements for products I do not, and probably will not, use. But if their purpose is to inform and interest me in actually buying their product, they have lost me by being either too vague or just unappealing. Then again, I may just be out of the popularly desired loop and off wandering along my own paths. But after growing up watching commercials that told me to “taste the rainbow” and tried to convince me about the arbitrary rules that say rabbits can’t eat cereal, but spastic cuckoos and toucans can, I should be able to figure out a marquee, right?

Either way, here is some entertainment from advertising folks at work!

Marquee One:

“Maca What?
New Freal and Muffin”

I understand the muffin. “Freal” sounds like a product named by a Valley Girl (“Like, fer real!”). The thing I relate to most is that question mark.

Marquee Two:

“New Crodo
Try it now!”

I’m wary of trying something with a name that sounds like it came from an elementary school kid after an unfortunate science experiment.

Marquee Three:

the son of Baconater”

True, it’s just a typo. But you try imagining this offspring and see how disturbed you get.

None of these, however, can top the message displayed on the marquee of a popular college burger joint near the campus. This is one I do get. Yes, I think they formatted their marquee this way on purpose. Their message was so fun and popular (and gave our college student brains such a welcome relief of giggles), that it graced the marquee two years’ running at the appropriate season:

“Try our
pumpkin shake
corn dog
89 cents”

Go ahead. Giggle. After all, they fry everything else on a stick.

What have you discovered lately?

Need a laugh? Go out to lunch. Take your best friend. Meet at one of your favorite hangouts where there the specialty—homemade ice cream—comes in generous portions. Realize how awesome it is that your friend is mature enough to determine that, today, ice cream is lunch. Because it is! (Banana splits have fruit and even protein if one of your toppings is the establishment’s homemade peanut butter sauce.) 

Giggle over the antics of the family and their pets as you regale stories, while delicious ice cream and carmel sauce drip all over your plate and make your hands delightfully sticky. (And express gratitude that napkins, when necessary, are happily plentiful.)

Update each other on various goings-on as you exchange Happy January Winter/Late Christmas presents which make the cold, grey day feel like bright spring. 

Try to remember to breathe as tears—icy in the winter air—stream down your face in laughter after your friend relates an awkward work experience in which a co-worker tells a client that she can qualify for more money once she has some dependents, to which the client responds, “How do I get those?” (Laugh more when you think of the people driving by in the parking lot wondering what is making the two of you laugh so hard, and how they can get in on it.) 

Marvel at your friend’s professionalism as she explains how she holds her breath on the other side of the cubicle to keep from laughing as she hears her co-worker’s awkward silence, and her maturity to resist the urge to go over and ask her co-worker, “Yes, how does one get dependents, dear?” while mentally hearing the opening line, “When a mommy and daddy love each other very much . . .” Cheer for the co-worker who, in her slightly stunned state, is able to form the very professional response that once one gets married and has children, then one has dependents in the form of spouse and said children.

Laugh with good nature when you realize that the dear client was simply asking what a dependent was, but the question implied something else that you would hope a nineteen year-old would know by now, and laugh even harder when you realize you understood your best friend perfectly without her having to explain all of this. Because after so long, friends come to share mental links.

So now upon hearing the word “dependents,” I may smile. And then giggle as I imagine my friend’s infectious giggle. And that may escalate until my sides hurt, my smile is stretched to the limits of my face, and I am once again reminded how gloriously good life is and why it is said that laughter is the best medicine.

Thanks for the dose of the best, Leaf Child!