Okay, so you’ve got a big event coming up that you want to kick off by writing jokes about the event. The problem is, nothing they’ve told you is funny! Okay, forget about the present, and look to the past! If this event has taken place over a number of years, you can bet that A.) SOMETHING SOMETIME has gone wrong, B.) lots of people remember it because they’ve been coming to the event for years. And even if they weren’t present, they probably heard about it. A quick reference will usually get a great laugh and some appreciation that you did your home work.
For example, I just did a show for a group who, last year, raffled off a . . .(drum roll pleeeaseee) TOYOTA PRIUS! I only found it out by causally asking them what last year’s raffle item was! Had I just focused on this year, then I certainly would have missed that comedy gem. So I found out about the prius, and then I listed out all the things we now associate with a Toyota, to come up with the line. . .”I ran into the guy in the parking lot who won last year’s Toyota Prius. . .and if he ever gets that thing stopped, he’s coming in!”
I’ve also been at events in which the previous year, the dinners were burned, one of the top executives dressed up as Elvis, and a speaker put up an X-Rated power point. As long as I’m making tasteful fun AND the meeting planner client thought it was funny, then it’s okay to joke about it.
So go ahead and bring up the past. . . it’ll bring back some funny memories!