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April Fools hoax stories could offer clues to help identify 'fake news' -- ScienceDaily

The researchers found that April fools hoax stories, when compared to genuine news: Are generally shorter in length Use more unique words Use longer sentences Are easier to read Refer to vague events in the future Contain more references to the present Are less interested in past events Contain fewer proper nouns Use more first person pronouns

On the Couch... with Dick Cavett | Psychology Today

Cavett: I remember being alone in Montauk by the sea one time, feeling very, very depressed. My late wife was away doing a play in Chicago. It took all that I had to just get the dog to come upstairs and turn on the television. Well, on came an old "Saturday Night Live" episode that I happened to be hosting. I saw myself smiling, cheerful - happy as a clam. I was sparkling. I was funny. And watching that was like a tonic. Had I not watched it, I think I might have stayed in that drowning darkness for more days. Perhaps it can be an area researched more in psychology. You know, seeing yourself in happier times. Maybe there's something to that.

Tina Fey on momdom

‘How do you balance work and family?’ And I say, ‘on your mom’s back, that’s how.’

Even with a joke, anchoring moves an offer up 10%

As expected, participants did anchor on the first number presented during the salary negotiation — even when that number was intended as a joke. When the bidding started off with the mention of $100,000 the average offer was $35,385 compared to an offer of $32,463 for the control group. That is, the high salary joke actually paid off with an extra $3,000 a year.

PC is for wussies (just don't call me a hick!)

Objecting to this sort of thing is for the coddled, the liberal, the élite. […] The ability to shrug off the mean crack, the sexist joke, the gratuitous jab at the weak is, in some quarters, seen as a form of strength, of “being flexible,” of “not taking shit serious.” A woman who wilts at a sexist joke won’t last long in certain workplaces. A guy who prioritizes the sensitive side of his nature will, trust me, not thrive in the slaughterhouse. This willingness to gloss over crudeness becomes, then, an encoded sign of competence, strength, and reliability. Above all, Trump supporters are “not politically correct,” which, as far as I can tell, means that they have a particular aversion to that psychological moment when, having thought something, you decide that it is not a good thought, and might pointlessly hurt someone’s feelings, and therefore decline to say it.

How to Flirt and Make Friends at a Nude Beach

How do nudists flirt? The same way porcupines have sex: Very carefully.

Punishments for slander or sedition

Common knowledge

Discussion between two prison inmates:    – What are you in for? – I created a comic strip, where I wrote that our president is a moron. – So, what article of the criminal code did they use to convict you: for slander or for extremism? – Neither of those. It was for the disclosure of state secrets!

Driver's education

"This week the Russian government gave all 44 of its Olympic medalists a new Mercedes. When asked what happened to the athletes who didn't medal, Putin said, 'Do not open trunk.'" –Jimmy Fallon

The happy and the sad

Two former schoolmates met in the street. "Where do you work?" "I am a school teacher. And what about you?" "I work for the KGB." "Oh, and what are you doing at the KGB?" "We unearth those who are dissatisfied." "You mean, there are also some who are satisfied?" "Those who are satisfied are dealt with by the Division for the Fight Against the Embezzlements of the Socialist Property."

Biggest data

In a collective farm, a pig gave birth to three piglets. The Party committee was convened and decided that to report about only three piglets would make a bad impression in the district Party committee. So, they reported that five piglets were born in the farm. The district Party committee reported to the Region Party committee that seven piglets were born in the collective farm. In their report to the Ministry of Agriculture, the Region Party committee advised that the socialist obligation to increase the number of pigs by twelve, has been successfully fulfilled. To please comrade Brezhnev, the Ministry reported that twenty piglets were born, ahead of the planned date. "Very good," comrade Brezhnev said. "Three piglets you'll give to the workers of Leningrad. Three you'll give to the heroic city of Moscow. Five you'll put aside for exports. Five you'll send to the starving African children. The rest you store as a strategic food reserve. Nobody shall touch it!"

The 7 paradoxes of the socialist state

Seven paradoxes of the socialist state: Nobody works, but the plan is always fulfilled. The plan is fulfilled, but the shelves in the stores are empty. The shelves are empty, but nobody starves; nobody starves, but everybody is unhappy; everybody is unhappy, but nobody complains; nobody complains, but the jails are full.

When feedback isn't a loop

When Brezhnev visited the USA, the American president asked him, "Mister Brezhnev, what is your hobby?" "I collect anecdotes the people tell about me." "And how big is your collection?" "As of yesterday, the tenth camp was almost full."

Who will judge the comics?

A judge walks out of the courtroom, laughing loudly. A colleague asks, "What is it you laugh about?" "Ah, I just heard an excellent anecdote," the judge says, sweeping tears of laughter. "An anecdote? Tell me!" "Are you crazy? I just sentenced a man to ten years for that anecdote."

Managing expectations

To alleviate the perennial shortages of butter, The Politburo of the Communist Party ordered the Soviet scientists to develop a technology for converting shit into butter, and to complete this project on or before the anniversary of the Great October Socialist Revolution. After six months of work, the Politburo demanded an interim progress report. The scientists reported that they had achieved a 50% success. The party requested elaboration. The reply from the Academy of Sciences explained, "One can already spread it, but not yet eat it."

Songs of sanity

An inspecting commission came to a lunatics asylum. To greet them, a choir of the patients sang a song from a popular movie that says "Oh, how good it is to live in the Soviet land!" The commission noticed that one of the men did not sing. "Why are you not singing?" "I'm not crazy, I'm a nurse's aide here."

Writing about the null state

Two brothers, John, and Bob, who lived in America and were members of the communist party, decided to emigrate to the USSR. Even though they didn't believe the American media's negative reports on the conditions in the USSR, they decided to exercise caution. First, only John would go to Russia to test the waters. If, contrary to the media reports, the living conditions would be found good, and the reports about persecutions by the KGB false, than John would write a letter to Bob using black ink whose color would signify that the letter is to be taken at face value. If, though, the situation in the USSR happened to be bad, and John would be afraid of writing the truth, he would use red ink thus indicating that whatever he says in the letter must not be believed. In three months John sent his first report. It was in black ink and read, "Dear brother Bob! I'm so happy here! It's a beautiful country, I enjoy complete freedom, and high standard of living. All the capitalist press wrote was lies. Everything is readily available! There is only one small thing of which there's shortage, namely red ink."


A woman walking in the street is carrying a bag full of rolls of toilet paper. A passer-by opens his mouth, "Hey, mother, where did you buy it?" "Buy? Are you crazy? Where could I buy it nowadays? They are five years old. I am taking them back from the cleaners."

Over-engineering a watch

A Polish tourist comes back home after visiting the USSR. He carries two very large and heavy suitcases. On his wrist is a new Soviet-made watch. He tells the customs man: "This is a new Soviet watch. It's a wonder unknown in the capitalist countries. You see, it shows time, the rate of your pulse beats, the phases of the Moon, the weather in Warsaw, Moscow, and New York, and more and more!" "Yes, it's a wonder," the customs man agrees. "And what is it you have in these big suitcases?" "Oh, it's just the batteries for that watch."

Planning for all contingencies

At a meeting in a factory, a lecturer from the district Party committee tells the workers about their bright future in the USSR. "See, comrades, after this five-year plan is completed, every family will have a separate apartment. After the next five-year plan is completed, every worker will have a car! And after one more five-year plan is completed, every family will own an airplane!" From the audience, somebody asks, "What the hell one may need an airplane for?" "Don't you see comrades? Let's say, there are shortages in potatoes supplies in your city. No problem! You take your own plane, fly to Moscow and buy potatoes!"

Between a rock and a hard place

A Jew applied for a visa to leave for Israel. During an interview at the passport office, the official asked, "Why do you want to leave the best country in the world?" "I have two reasons," the Jew answered. "One is that my neighbor is an anti-Semite, and when he's drunk, he knocks at my door and shouts, 'Just wait, as soon as the Soviet regime is over with, we kill you, Jews!" "But you shouldn't worry," the official said. "The Soviet state is forever." "That is my second reason," the Jew said.

The pen is mightier

Napoleon was resurrected and came to Moscow on November 7, when a military parade is held to commemorate the 1917 Bolsheviks' upheaval. Brezhnev invited Napoleon to watch the parade. Napoleon, instead of watching the tanks and rockets, read the Pravda(4) newspaper with a great interest. The Minister of Defense whispered, "Your Majesty, look at this military technique. If you had such tanks, you would've won at Waterloo." To that, Napoleon answered, "If I had such press as yours is, nobody would ever know I lost at Waterloo."

Back in the USSR

Comrade Ivanov applied to the communist party. The Party committee asked him, "Have you ever vacillated in following the Party line?" "No, I always vacillated together with the line.(2)"