When you were learning subtraction way back when, did you have to learn the names of the parts of the equation? Say you have the equation 3-1=2. The 3 is the minuend, the 1 is the subtrahend, and the 2 is, depending on where you went to school, the remainder or the difference.
Now, it’s likely been 60 years since I thought about that, but for whatever reason it’s the first thing I thought of for the prompt difference. And, when you think of it, what difference does it make? All I can think of is that it gave my arithmetic teacher something to spend a day talking about…
What’s the difference between a comma and a cat? A comma is a pause at the end of a clause, while a cat has claws at the end of its paws. That’s the cleanest joke of that sort I could think of. Trust me, you don’t want to hear the others.
I had a book once called Bennett Cerf’s Book of Riddles. The first riddle, of course, was "Who’s Bennett Cerf?" Wikipedia tells us
Bennett Alfred Cerf (May 25, 1898 – August 27, 1971) was an American publisher and co-founder of the American publishing firm Random House. Cerf was also known for his own compilations of jokes and puns, for regular personal appearances lecturing across the United States, and for his television appearances in the panel game show What’s My Line?
If you ever get a chance, watch the old episodes of What’s My Line? I think one of the game show channels runs them late at night. A contestant comes in and the panel (which usually included Mr. Cerf, Arlene Francis, Dorothy Kilgallen, and a guest celebrity) would ask "yes" or "no" questions and try to figure out what the person did for a living. There’s a YouTube channel with a bunch of episodes on it. Here’s one…
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