MAIN STREET by Roger Allen, publisher

Roger Allen, publisher. “Rockford is the Humor Capital of the World”

Annual Humor Banquet

As you all know, or should, the Squire’s annual Humor Banquet has come and gone. YOU WEREN’T THERE. Shame on you.

The Squire always holds its humor banquet at noon the Saturday before April Fools Day. Location: the sidewalk of The Corner Bar at Main and Courtland streets in Rockford. The rules: bring jokes to share and buy your own hotdog.

Okay, so I wasn’t at this year’s banquet, either, but I have a good excuse (don’t know about YOU).

Loaded with jokes, I stepped into the garage at 11:00. My car’s flat tire made me grab the bike. However, before even getting to the corner, I hit the neighborhood porcupine. The porcupine gave me a dirty look and waddled off, leaving me with two flat bike tires.

So: back to the house, on foot, wheeling the bike; called the flat tire fixer guys.

I was standing in the driveway next to their truck when a passing skateboarder clipped me in the ankle. I suffered only a damaged sock but the skateboarder lost his balance and landed smack on that same accident-prone porcupine.

While I cussed out the porcupine and chased him up his tree, the flat tire guys called an ambulance for the skateboarder, who was unreasonably frantic about some quills sticking out of his backside.

While waiting for the ambulance, the skateboarder called his lawyer. The lawyer arrived while I was still in the tree pursuing the porcupine. I saw him taking notes about the tree and the porcupine being on MY property. The ambulance arrived and took away the skateboarder.

Still determined to make it to the Humor Banquet on time, I headed off in a sprint down the street toward The Corner Bar. When I stepped on the left-behind skateboard, I knew it was a lost cause.

My next-door neighbor, Ken Platt, bandaged my injured hand while I tried to ignore the mean-spirited snorts and chortles of the porcupine up there in the tree.

It was disappointing to miss my most fun event the year. I attach a few jokes I tried to bring with me to the banquet:

Historical note

A busload of tourists arrives at Runnymede. They gather around the guide, who says, “This is the spot where the barons forced King John to sign the Magna Carta.”

“When did that happen?” asks a fellow at the front of the crowd.

“1215,” answers the guide.

The man looks at his watch and says, “Darn! Just missed it by a half hour!”

Kitchen note

Two confirmed bachelors sat talking. Their conversation drifted from sports to cooking.

“I got a cookbook once,” said the first, “but I could never do anything with it.”

“Too much fancy cooking in it, huh?” asked the second.

“You said it. Every one of the recipes began the same way: Take a clean dish and…”

Procrastinator’s note

I believe that if anything is worth doing, it would have been done already.

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The Squire has been Rockford’s free weekly newspaper since 1871. Our loyal readership includes over fifteen thousand homes in the Rockford area, including the affluent Lakes area of Lake Bella Vista, Bostwick Lake and Silver Lake; Belmont, Blythefield, as well as Algoma, Courtland, Cannon and Plainfield Townships. The Squire is distributed through the U.S. Post Office every Thursday. We also deliver to in-town businesses and homes with paper carriers and news stands in our grocery stores and over thirty local shops.