Monday, January 19, 2009

No, You Couldn't Make These Up

Thanks go to Knitterofshinythings who sent me this a while back. I was saving it for a time that might need some humor to lighten things up. January in New York is just such a time period. And yes, I am ever so thankful that what follows was NOT written by any of my students. Enjoy!

The list that follows is compiled from answers on the GCSE exam
[The General Certificate of Secondary Education (GCSE) is the name of an academic qualification awarded in a specified subject, generally taken in a number of subjects by students aged 14-16 in secondary education in England, Wales, and Northern Ireland. (In Scotland, the equivalent is the Standard Grade). Education to GCSE level is often required of students who study for A-levels, themselves a common requirement for entry to university.]

1. Ancient Egypt was inhabited by mummies and they all wrote in hydraulics. They lived in the Sarah Dessert and traveled by Camelot. The climate of the Sarah is such that the inhabitants have to live elsewhere.
2. The Bible is full of interesting caricatures. In the first book of the Bible, Guinessis, Adam and Eve were created from an apple tree. One of their children, Cain, asked, "Am I my brother's son?"
3. Moses led the Hebrew slaves to the Red Sea, where they made unleavened bread which is bread made without any ingredients. Moses went up on Mount Cyanide to get the ten commandments. He died before he ever reached Canada.
4. Solomom had three hundred wives and seven hundred porcupines.
5. The Greeks were a highly sculptured people, and without them we wouldn't have history. The Greeks also had myths. A myth is a female moth.
6. Actually, Homer was not written by Homer but by another man of that name.
7. Socrates was a famous Greek teacher who went around giving people advice. They killed him. Socrates died from an overdose of wedlock. After his death, his career suffered a dramatic decline.
8. In the Olympic games, Greeks ran races, jumped, hurled the biscuits, and threw the java.
9. Eventually, the Romans conquered the Greeks. History calls people Romans because they never stayed in one place for very long.
10. Julius Caesar extinguished himself on the battlefields of Gaul. The Ides of March murdered him because they thought he was going to be made king. Dying, he gasped out: "Tee hee, Brutus."
11. Nero was a cruel tyranny who would torture his subjects by playing the fiddle to them.
12. Joan of Arc was burnt to a steak and was cannonized by Bernard Shaw. Finally Magna Carta provided that no man should be hanged twice for the same offense.
13. In midevil times most people were alliterate. The greatest writer of the futile ages was Chaucer, who wrote many poems and verses and also wrote literature.
14. Another story was William Tell, who shot an arrow through an apple while standing on his son's head.
15. Queen Elizabeth was the "Virgin Queen." As a queen she was a success. When she exposed herself before her troops they all shouted "hurrah."
16. It was an age of great inventions and discoveries. Gutenberg invented removable type and theBible. Another important invention was the circulation of blood. Sir Walter Raleigh is a historical figure because he invented cigarettes and started smoking. And Sir Francis Drake circumcised the world with a 100 foot clipper.
17. The greatest writer of the Renaissance was William Shakespeare. He was born in the year 1564, supposedly on his birthday. He never made much money and is famous only because of his plays. He wrote tragedies, comedies, and hysterectomies, all in Islamic pentameter. Romeo and Juliet are an example of a heroic couplet. Romeo's last wish was to be laid by Juliet.
18. Writing at the same time as Shakespeare was Miguel Cervantes. He wrote Donkey Hote. The nextgreat author was John Milton. Milton wrote Paradise Lost. Then his wife died and he wrote Paradise Regained.
19. During the Renaissance America began. Christopher Columbus was a great navigator who discovered America while cursing about the Atlantic. His ships were called the Nina, the Pinta, and the Santa Fe.
20. Later, the Pilgrims crossed the ocean, and this was called Pilgrim's Progress. The winter of 1620 was a hard one for the settlers. Many people died and many babies were born. Captain John Smith was responsible for all this.
21. One of the causes of the Revolutionary War was the English put tacks in their tea. Also, the colonists would send their parcels through the post without stamps. Finally the colonists won the War and no longer had to pay for taxis. Delegates from the original 13 states formed theContented Congress. Thomas Jefferson, a Virgin, and Benjamin Franklin were two singers of the Declaration of Independence. Franklin discovered electricity by rubbing two cats backwards and declared, "A horse divided against itself cannot stand.". Franklin died in 1790 and is still dead.
22. Soon the Constitution of the United States was adopted to secure domestic hostility. Under the constitution the people enjoyed the right to keep bare arms.
23. Abraham Lincoln became America's greatest Precedent. Lincoln's mother died in infancy, and he was born in a log cabin which he built with his own hands. Abraham Lincoln freed the slaves by signing the Emasculation Proclamation. On the night of April 14, 1865, Lincoln went to the theater and got shot in his seat by one of the actors in a moving picture show. The believed assinator was John Wilkes Booth, a supposedly insane actor. This ruined Booth's career.
24. Meanwhile in Europe, the enlightenment was a reasonable time. Voltaire invented electricity and also wrote a book called Candy.
25. Gravity was invented by Issac Walton. It is chiefly noticeable in the autumn when the apples are falling off the trees.
26. Johann Bach wrote a great many musical compositions and had a large number of children. In between he practiced on an old spinster which he kept up in his attic. Bach died from 1750 to the present. Bach was the most famous composer in the world and so was Handel. Handel was half German half Italian and half English. He was very large.
27. Beethoven wrote music even though he was deaf. He was so deaf he wrote loud music. He took long walks in the forest even when everyone was calling for him. Beethoven expired in 1827 and later died for this.
28. The French Revolution was accomplished before it happened and catapulted into Napoleon. Napoleon wanted an heir to inherit his power, but since Josephine was a baroness, she couldn't have any children.
29. The sun never set on the British Empire because the British Empire is in the East and the sun sets in the West.
30. Queen Victoria was the longest queen. She sat on a thorn for 63 years. She was a moral woman who practiced virtue. Her death was the final event which ended her reign.
31. The nineteenth century was a time of a great many thoughts and inventions. People stopped reproducing by hand and started eproducing by machine. The invention of the steamboat caused a networkof rivers to spring up. Cyrus McCormick invented the McCormick raper, which did the work of a hundred men.
32. Louis Pasteur discovered a cure for rabbis. Charles Darwin was a naturalist who wrote the Organ of the Species. Madman Curie discovered radio. And Karl Marx became one of the Marx brothers.
33. The First World War, caused by the assignation of the Arch-Duck by an anahist, ushered in a new error in the anals of human history.


Anonymous said...

Louis Pasteur discovered a cure for rabbis. If only! Reading these reinforced my claim that I would have no patience to be a teacher and have to read what students routinely turn in.

Anonymous said...

ROFL. Should have an advisory on top: do not read while at work.

>>Abraham Lincoln became America's greatest Precedent. <<

Well, for Obama at least, that's 100% true.

nmf #7 said...

LOL. You can't make these things up. You just can't.

Anonymous said...

These were just perfect for the dismal day it is turning out to be. The person in the cubicle next to me heard me laughing out loud and came to see what could be so funny. Then there were two of us laughing. Half my office has logged on to get a dose of laughter. Thanks!!!

Knitter of shiny things said...

When I originally found this posted on my friend's blog I was sick with something (I forget what) and laughing hurt, and yet I could not stop laughing when I read it then.

So I agree with Lon that you should probably put the warning up. I feel bad for anyone who chances upon this while studying in a library.

Anonymous said...

Sooooo funny!!! Agree there should be a warning to read where laughing is not against the rules.

Ookamikun said...

This is most likely an urban legend.
Check your sources.

ProfK said...

Snopes does not say it is an urban legend, only that a few of the lines have appeared elsewhere. Many were compiled by Richard Lederer, who states emphatically that he did not make them up. The English Teachers Network routinely publishes listings of student bloopers sent in by its membership. The bloopers on this posting were from the 2000 GSCE exam and can be seen on the ETNI website

As to why some of the lines appear in a few places? Students as well as adults may have seen them somewhere and used them as their answers.

Ookamikun said...

Compare them, you'll see that quiet a few are identical.

Anonymous said...

Aw come on Moshe. They're funny no matter how they got here.

Ookamikun said...

They may be funny but not necessarily true and for sure not from the 2000 GCSE exam. I've seen some of these myself in different emails.

Anonymous said...

Moshe, you get many emails that give you the source for what they are sending you? Even where there is a source do you go and check it? Have you seen the GCSE exam itself? Would the students taking that exam give the source for their answers? Maybe the Prof is right that the students on that exam heard the lines somewhere and thought they were true. Maybe the original source is different from the exam. But if someone put them on the exam then doesn't the exam also become a source for the lines?

I can't believe we are arguing about whether these lines are true or not or whether they really came from the exam or not. In this case does it really matter?

Ookamikun said...

Here's another hilarious though absolutely not true story.
Read the story right above "sightings", not the one at beginning of the page.

MusingMaidel said...

Hi. Recently stumbled onto your blog. I really needed this laugh. Thanks.

Funny as it is, it still doesn't beat what happened when I was in 11th grade. We were learning earth science, and one of the girls asked why we don't fall off the planet. Before the teacher had a chance to answer, another girl interjected - Don't be stupid - we live on the inside of the earth! I still haven't figured out if she was just being facetious, or if she really didn't know. I hope it's the former.