CLOSE

Nine Holiday Gifts That Send a Message

Ever received a gift and wondered what it meant? Here are some of those gifts deciphered for your convenience.

Freudian Slippers may keep your feet toasty warm, but they also say, "Maybe you need psychiatric help." Other potential uses: "It's time to get off the couch." Or simply just "Love, Mom."

435_laundryrug.jpg
The Laundry Rug is so convenient, especially since your clothes are already on their way to the floor. Clearly, someone's trying to tell you, "I'm tired of picking up after you."

435_catvomitsign.jpg
The Cat Vomit Warning Sign can only mean one thing: "I have problems with your cat." This generally stems from stepping on a hairball in the middle of the night.

435_tattoomaker.jpg
What child wouldn't be excited to find the GR8 TaT2 Maker under the tree on Christmas morning? The message is clear, "We have high hopes for your future, kid."
435_handgrenade.jpg
Nothing says "Get out of bed!" like this Hand Grenade Alarm Clock. Warning: Not the best travel alarm for frequent flyers.

435_dogtagimage.jpg
Location Earth Dog Tags ensure that the recipient will be able to find his way home after aliens abduct him. It could mean, "You are out of this world!" or it could mean someone has you on a very long leash.

10catlady.jpg

Crazy Cat Lady Action Figure is a playset for the real world. Santa Claus brought this because, "Maybe it's time you left the house."

350nothin.jpg

No hidden messages with the gift of Nothing. "This shows how much you mean to me."
435_bodybag.jpg
A Body Bag garment bag could be a thoughtful gift to protect your clothing, or it could mean, "You're Next."

Of course, every one of these gifts could also be saying, "I have a sense of humor and I really hope you have one, too!"

nextArticle.image_alt|e
Getty Images
arrow
entertainment
Watch 18 Minutes of Julia Louis-Dreyfus Seinfeld Bloopers
Getty Images
Getty Images

Sometimes you just need to settle in and watch professional actors cracking up, over and over. That's what we have for you today.

In the two videos below, we get a total of 18 minutes of Seinfeld bloopers, specifically focused on Julia Louis-Dreyfus. When Louis-Dreyfus cracks up, Seinfeld can't help but make it worse, goading her. It's delightful.

Sample quote (during an extended break):

Seinfeld: "We won an Emmy, you know."

Louis-Dreyfus: "Yeah, but I didn't."

Her individual Seinfeld Emmy arrived in 1996; the show started winning in 1992. But in September 2017, Louis-Dreyfus—who turns 57 years old today—set a couple of Emmy records when she won her sixth award for playing Selina Meyer on Veep.

nextArticle.image_alt|e
iStock
arrow
fun
The Funniest Word in the English Language? 'Booty,' According to New Survey
iStock
iStock

Some words, regardless of their meaning, are simply more chuckle-worthy than others. To determine which expressions in the English language are truly the most comical, Smithsonian reports that psychologists at the University of Warwick in the UK conducted a survey in which they asked people to rate the “humor value” of a sampling of chosen words. They recently published their findings in the journal Behavior Research Methods.

The researchers selected nearly 5000 words, and then used Amazon’s online crowdsourcing tool Mechanical Turk to ask more than 800 individuals to rank the humor value of 211 randomly chosen words from the list, on a scale from 1 (humorless) to 5 (humorous). Likely not surprising to anyone with younger siblings, the funniest word ended up being “booty,” with an average ranking of 4.32. In descending order, the remaining top 12 words—which all received a score of 3.9 or higher—were “tit,” “booby,” “hooter,” “nitwit,” “twit,” “waddle,” “tinkle,” “bebop,” “egghead,” “ass,” and “twerp.”

Why these words are so funny remains fuzzy. But when they analyzed their findings according to age and gender, the researchers did find that sexually suggestive words like “orgy” and “bondage” tended to tickle the funny bones of men, as did the words “birthmark,” “brand,” “chauffeur,” “doze,” “buzzard,” “czar,” “weld,” “prod,” “corn,” and “raccoon.”

Meanwhile, women tended to laugh at the words “giggle,” “beast,” “circus,” “grand,” “juju,” “humbug,” “slicker,” “sweat,” “ennui,” “holder,” “momma,” and “sod.” As for people under the age of 32, they were amused by “goatee,” “joint,” and “gangster,” while older participants liked “squint,” “jingle,” “burlesque,” and “pong.” Across the board, all parties were least amused by words like “rape,” “torture,” and “torment.”

Although humor is complex and dependent on elements like syntax and delivery, the study's researchers say that breaking comedy down to single-word units could demystify its essence.

“The research initially came about as a result of our curiosity,” said Tomas Engelthaler, the study’s lead author, in a press release. “We were wondering if certain words are perceived as funnier, even when read on their own. It turns out that indeed is the case. Humor is an everyday aspects of our lives and we hope this publicly available dataset allows future researchers to better understand its foundations.”

[h/t Smithsonian]

SECTIONS

arrow
LIVE SMARTER
More from mental floss studios