Non-Boring Flourishing Newsletter #1: The Genius of the Dad Joke

Q: How do you drown a hipster? A: In the mainstream.

Q: How do hipsters like their coffee? A: Black, like their souls. 

Dad jokes are a surprisingly good laughter currency. I have most recently heard of dad jokes used at war, in-between shifts, to boost morale. And the soldiers liked them! (One of the best: “Did you hear about the elephant circumciser? The pay was bad but the tips were huge.”) 

Laughter, scent, music, play, movement (boxing, tennis, dancing, etc.) and beauty are a few of life’s interruptions that help us time travel from “where we are” to a better place. Our particles are in the same place, but our heart is not. Our mood lightens. Our jaw relaxes. Our shoulders, for that moment, buck off the knapsack of cares we carry. We have a little more capacity to breathe.  A little interruption can do a lot of good. 

Ironically, we have to be intentional about inviting positive, pleasant, zero-calorie, zero-numbing interruptions into our lives. Some may set an alarm a couple times a day. Some may  keep a note in a purse or wallet. It’s not an automatic response, especially when we are in the grip of a challenging situation.

I learned this is possible from being around genuinely happy people – including people who have no right to be happy (thought me)!  

In the next hour I’ll sit with one of those people at the cancer doctor’s office.  He’ll receive a diagnosis and it could be anything from “you’re fine” to “yikes.”  This friend has endured much and has one of the lightest touches and happiest spirits I know. This is not because of life’s challenges, but in spite of life’s difficult circumstances. He fights to be happy with every thought.  And I mean no matter what. 

-In 2008, his assets were wiped away and he faced a stack of bills to the IRS. He told me, “Well, I could think about those bills or I could listen to Bach. Why would I deny myself the pleasure of Bach?” He negotiated a settlement and within two years was building assets again.

-In 2013, his blood cancer returned. In-between the biopsy and the diagnosis he had no idea what the doctor would say.  So he played tennis and ate his favorite meal and laughed with his friends, never forgot to drink his favorite evening Scotch (in moderation) and got on with things. “Don’t buy trouble when it’s not on sale.”  He had to have surgery but was grateful he had insurance. “We all are playing with house money. I’m grateful for today.” 

Yes, life is tough, people can be super mean and we will eventually die. This is all true. That’s part of the deal we get when we are issued a human body. But there is also 10,000 joys that come with life. And these are also true. 

Well, life’s waiting for me now. How will I meet it? Julie Andrews was right  in The Sound of Music. Meet life with “my favorite things.” 

Q Why did the hipster burn his tongue? A: Because he ate his food before it was cool.

Q: How many hipsters does it take to screw in a lightbulb? A: You wouldn’t know, it’s kind of an obscure number


Kind regards,


Allegra Jordan,

PS: I write this newsletter to share what I have learned about the flourishing life. Pass it on if you sense a friend could use it. 

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