A woman in California was attacked by a bear but fought it off with her laptop computer. She said the bear ran away terrified when she showed it President Trump’s Twitter feed.
How I wrote it:
This news item caught my eye because it’s easy to understand and has a couple of promising handles.
To write the joke, I used my Punch Line Maker #3, asking this question about the topic: “How did she use her laptop computer to fight off the bear?”
To answer that question, I brainstormed associations of the handle “laptop computer,” one of which is “things on a computer.” That has the sub-association “scary things on a computer,” one of which I thought my audience would agree is President Trump’s Twitter feed. That sub-association was surprising and funny enough that I made it my punch line.
To minimize the chance that I’d divide my audience, I left it vague why most people would think that President Trump’s tweets are scary. I just assumed that most people would accept that there’s something terrifying about them.
I left out of the topic the fact that the woman actually hit the bear with her laptop. “Fought it off” allows my topic to be true while also being logically consistent with my punch line.
I included the word “terrified” in the angle, instead of just writing something like, “She said the bear ran away when she showed it President Trump’s Twitter feed.” My Joke Maximizer #4 is “Make everything clear,” and that joke wouldn’t clearly state why the tweets made the bear run away.