Standing in the lunch line at "American Table" cafe:
Me: "There are a lot of funny stories I want to share, but they fall into the 'you had to be there' category."
Me: "Perhaps it's just about context. If a great writer described all the context, effectively transporting the reader there, the story should be just as funny."
Dan: "No. Let's say a cocky guy is strutting down the street, and slips on a banana peel. If you were watching it, that would be really funny. But if I tell it to you afterwards, it's not."
Me: "Then it's about managing expectations. If you're not expecting anything to happen, the surprise makes it funny."
Me: "So I just need to lower expectations first, by telling a lot of pointless stories."
Dan: "Well, you've got that part down!"
As an example of one such story...
Standing on a street corner in San Francisco, at 10pm. A taxi drives by with a huge ad on top of it, with "ORACLE" in red letters on a white background.
Tom: "Do these Oracle ads actually work?"
LG: "I could sure use some enterprise databases right about now."