Ramsey and District U3A


Our Chairman welcomed members old and new and visitors to the July meeting. The usual housekeeping notices were read out, with a reminder that tables and chairs in the foyer were reserved for those who were less able. If anyone had left serving spoons at the Family History Summer Picnic, please contact Sheila Gilbert-Hill. A reminder that there is no general meeting in August, see you in September.

Sign-up sheets for the trip to the Black Country museum were available in the foyer, price £40 per person. If any couple would like to Join the Bruges trip, please contact Jane or any member of the Travel Committee. Trips for 2020 include ‘Irish House Party’, 29th June to 3rd July price £558 per person with a single supplement of £69, half board terms. Day trips to Peckover House and Elgoods brewery on 23rd October price £25. Houses of Parliament and River trip 28th April price £60 and finally Hampton Court Palace 17th July price £45. Deposit for the day trips is £10 per person (non-refundable). If you are interested, please sign the sign-up sheets, names only required at this time.

The Groups co-ordinator read out the Group news for this month. She thanked Group Leaders and Members who attended the ‘Meet and Greet’. The display this month was from the Quilting group. Sign-up sheets are available in the foyer for Canasta players – who need one more player to make it viable. Music appreciation and Board games have been suggested by members and sign-up sheets were available. Some of the groups have changed their start times, they include Hand Chimes, Short Tennis and Metal Detecting, see Web site for timings. The following Groups will meet in August; Table Tennis, Metal Detecting, Creative Writing and Cycling.

Jane then introduced the speaker for this afternoon’s talk, Diane Simpson, who talked to us about ‘humour’. Diane is a psychologist who explores the mind in an entertaining way and returns by popular demand.

Diane started her talk by saying that you should not talk about humour as it kills it! She then told us a joke, about a hostage situation, which had us laughing at the outcome. It included a German shepherd, dog handler and a helping of fish and chips!

Laughter is the best relief for stress, and she quoted Byron “And if I laugh at any mortal thing, ‘Tis that I may not weep.” If you laugh together, then a bond is formed.

Humour is quite a serious subject; we must be quite careful in what we laugh at. We were then told the joke of a man who went to the doctor, complaining that his wife was going mad and threatening him. The punch line had us laughing out loud, as the doctor told him to drink water and swish it around in his mouth. After three weeks he went back and said that was amazing, it worked, how come? In reply the doctor said, it was because your mouth was shut!

We were then shown a video to prove that babies are hard wired for humour, when the little one laughed nonstop when paper she was playing with was torn into small strips. Animals too enjoy funny things and touch makes them happy.

What happens when we laugh? It activates the brain, becomes a social lubricant and solves incongruity resolution. We were then introduced to the rule of three, brains love threes. This rule has been picked up by advertising, politics, comedians and even Julius Caesar.

We then had a joke about religion when a minister fell into the water and wanted his god to save him, followed by a 75-year-old parachutist who was told to shout ‘Buddha, help me’ if his parachute didn’t open.

To share a smile or joke is fine, but to use laughter as a weapon in sarcasm or to mock is not the way forward. We can laugh about death – so called black humour – and we were told of a visit to the undertakers which led to a head swap!

Toilet humour is usually the first joke told by young children and humour can be a method of cutting down on vandalism and graffiti in the gent’s urinals. Sexual humour can be a chuckle, snigger or downright rude. We then listened to a TV announcer having a laughing fit while listening to the first recorded sound.

Laughter is amazing, Diane then gave each of us a handout titled ‘What laughter can do for you’ please enjoy it. It should tickle your fancy! Thank You. Just one question: Why don’t wives laugh at husband’s jokes? A. They are not funny!

The chairman then thanked Diane for a most interesting afternoon and we broke for tea and coffee.

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Next Meeting

As we have no meeting in August, the next general meeting will take place on Tuesday 10th September at the Community Centre, Stocking Fen Road, Ramsey, starting at 2.00pm. The subject will be “Shaping the World,” ‘How the A14 upgrade was planned’ by a member of The Institute of Civil Engineers.

And Finally

Car Parking – Please remember to park your car considerately and use car sharing, if you are able.


“I needed a password eight characters long, so I picked Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.” – Nick Helm.

“Conjunctivitis.com – That’s a site for sore eyes.” – Tim Vine.

Exit signs? They’re on the way out!” – Tim Vine.

Mike Lewis