Humour by Rehana Munir: Other people's children – Hindustan Times

Humour by Rehana Munir: Other people’s children – Hindustan Times

Humour by Rehana Munir: Other people’s children. As the parenting support staff, there’s plenty to give and receive. You don’t really have to be a parent to …
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Last hurrah for Coventry adult panto legend Joe Lawless – CoventryLive

Coventry’s Joe Lawless, known locally as ‘Joe the Barber’ is putting on his final show in September Subscribe today to get the latest Coventry headlines straight to your inbox with our free email updates A Coventry panto legend will be directing his final ever show next month after 20 years in the business. Joe Lawless, known locally as 'Joe the Barber' is well known in the city for putting on adult pantomimes. Described as a night for adults to enjoy their inner child, Joe has put on shows such as Jack & His Stalk, One Jump Too Many and Mutiny On The Kit Kat. It is the final curtain call for Joe, who has been writing adult pantos in Coventry since 1997. He is known as Joe the Barber because he ran a hugely popular barber shop, The Clip Joint, for nearly 35 years. As reported in our Coventry newsletter, Joe retired in 2020 after cutting the hair of generations of families at his shop in Tile Hill. He has always written local adult pantos, and his last ever show, 'A Handful of Nuts' will run at the Rialto Plaza in Coundon this September. But what actually is an adult panto, and why has Joe decided to call time on his famed performances? He told CoventryLive: “I felt I had another panto still in me, and I wanted to share it, and what's been great is over the years, I've got people that do like my sense of humour, it's only a cross between Benny Hill, Tommy Cooper, Carry On Films and of course Mrs Brown because I'm Irish. “I was born over in Ireland and came over to Coventry when I was four. My mum's always had a great sense of humour.” A Handful of Nuts has been cancelled twice due to Covid, but will be going ahead with the original cast and crew “raring to go”. A lover of all things Christmas, Joe is well known in the Coventry community for dressing as Santa Claus every year in his shop and visiting the children on the wards at Birmingham Children's Hospital. Describing how he got into the panto world, Joe said: “It started in about 1997, anything Christmassy I'm up for, it was at a local pub and it was that bad it was good. “I turned to Max and said I could do better than this and she's regretted saying ever since why don't you have a go, and that's how Jack and His Stalk came about.” The show, A Handful of Nuts, is described as a “a naughty but nice adult comedy musical pantomime which follows central character Isla Blige on her fight to save her beloved woods from greedy frackers. Will the frackers win? Or will the Woods be lost forever? There is only one way to find out….” Joe went on: “If the show's half as good as the rehearsals its going to be brilliant because we have such a good laugh. “Why I say adult panto, is that I find if adults go out without the children, then they can become children. “By saying only adults, adults can just be themselves, inhibitions can go. It's not really adult because really there's nothing in it that an 11-year-old wouldn't know. With this being his final ever show, Joe plans to use his free time to train as a crew member on a narrow boat, enjoy doing more fishing and see more shows at the local theatre. “I feel like it's letting go of a baby or you've just had puppies and you've let them go, it's my final gift shall we say.” James Penny from the Rialto Plaza said: “We are beyond excited to be hosting his panto for this year. Let's be honest we all need a big laugh right now. Joe's adult pantos are always enjoyed in the city, you'll never experience a night like this! “It's just joyous to be planning a fun event for the region. I've had a look at Joe's script and his humour will bring some much-needed cheer to Coventry. It's hilarious and I think audiences will just love it!”
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Elements of surprise – TimesLIVE

Much has been written about what sets humans apart from other animals. A lot of theories have been disproved – elephants understand death; cats have a sense of humour – but if there is one thing that is uniquely human, it is our capacity to be surprised at things that keep happening and are pretty much entirely predictable. We should not be surprised when politicians turn out to be corrupt, yet we always are – and maybe this says something admirable about us. Even stranger, however, is our reaction to the weather…
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