Thursday, August 27, 2009

Mother In Law Sues Daughter in Law Over Jokes

I've heard plenty of mother in law complaints, but the latest news story about mother in law jokes ought to get a prize. A stand up comedy performer is half Swedish and half African American. She has a Hindu first name and was raised Roman Catholic. She married a Jewish guy and converted to Judaism. She was very good at using her personal background in her comedy routine. Until last week, when she was sued by her own mother in law for unspecified damages for defamation because she was using her mother in law's name. The New York Post reports as follows on this odd story.

"In one of her shticks, Croonquist jokes that Ruth Zafrin told another son to "hide her pocketbook" the first time she met her daughter-in-law.

Zafrin's mom -- along with his sister, Shelley Edelman and her husband, Neil -- sued Croonquist for defamation in Monmouth County, NJ, federal court, seeking unspecified damages.

Zafrin yesterday said Ruth and Shelley "never even picked up the phone" to voice their displeasure to Croonquist before filing the lawsuit.

"Getting a lawyer, frankly, was outrageous," Zafrin said. 'Why would you sue your brother -- who is a lawyer?"

He responded by putting three lawyers from his own firm on the case for his wife."

Whatever Croonquist might have said, I can't think of a better way to mess up domestic tranquility than to sue your own daughter in law. And while she's at it, what better way to get laughs than to have a lawyer and a mother in law in the same joke? When this case is finished, Croonquist is going to have some great material.

I've heard a few good mother in law jokes over the years.

What is the difference between a mother in law and a vulture? A vulture waits until you're dead till he eats your heart out.

What is the difference between a mother in law and a terrorist? You can negotiate with a terrorist.

A woman is complaining to her husband.

"Admit it! You don't like my family at all !

"That's not true." The husband answered. "I like your mother in law much better than mine."

I used to have a good time joking with my in laws. With a northerner marrying a southerner, there was plenty of opportunity for humour.

I once was changing my son's diaper when my mother in law (who is from down south) was visiting. I called out to my wife "I'm cleaning the south side of this northern boy."

Another time my mother in law called on my wife's birthday. I told her I was taking my ex fiance out to dinner.

There is a lot of opportunity for humour in marriage. The same things you can fight about are the same things you can laugh about. This lawsuit is a family fight. It doesn't belong in a courtroom. I hope it is wrapped up in time for the high holidays.

I included a classic 50's song which seems relevant to this news item

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