A climatologist walks into a bar. . .
"What is the shortest book in the world? "The Environmentalists' Book of Jokes", of course."
Thus begins Robert Butler's 2008 piece from The Economist's "More Intelligent Life on Earth" blog. He mostly ponders why there is so little climate humor out there, but in the process manages to unearth some pretty good stuff.
Follow the links found toward the end of the article.
"What is the shortest book in the world? "The Environmentalists' Book of Jokes", of course. It's not a hard point to prove. Pick up the 550-page book Man Walks into a Bar, which claims to be the biggest joke book in the world with more than 6,000 entries. The jokes are divided into more than 400 themes that run from accidents to zoos.
"Look under C and the index goes from civil servants to cloning. (No mention of climate change.) Look under G and it goes from giraffes to golf. (No mention of global warming.) Look under E, and there's no earth or environment; look under P and there's no planet. This is the future we face: rivers dry up, sea levels rise, animals become extinct”and there won't be a single blonde joke, or lightbulb joke, or three-men-walked-into-a-bar joke about any of it.
"There are half-a-dozen reasons why this could be the case. The first is, climate change is too serious for humour. But 'Man Walks into a Bar' has jokes about death, lepers and suicide. The second is, climate change is simply too boring. But there are jokes about accountancy. The third is, climate change is too preachy and earnest. That probably comes closest. The comedian Marcus Brigstocke travelled on a boat to the Arctic, with the novelist Vikram Seth and others, to see for himself what was happening (Intelligent Life, Autumn 2007). In an article in the Sunday Times, Brigstocke admitted: 'The environment is frankly dull, boring and worthy, not always a great source of comedy.'"
More Intelligent Life (The Economist)