Laryngitis, about the only thing with the power, has rendered me speechless. Like many other things, it has also brought memories of one of Daddy’s favorite jokes.

A customer comes into the ice cream shop and requests a cone of ice cream. The girl behind the counter rasps, “What would you like? We have chocolate, vanilla, and Karo pecan.”

The customer asks, “Do you have laryngitis?”

“No,” the girl answers, “Just chocolate, vanilla, and Karo pecan.”

We heard the joke every time we got laryngitis growing up. I heard it the most often since I end every illness with a round. In fact, Daddy used to say if I broke my toe, the last part of the healing would be a case of laryngitis. But he didn’t just save the gag for us.

Once he was traveling back with a friend to the seminary when he was recovering from a bout of his own. The friend sympathized with his losing his voice, which was equally as painful to him as it is to me, and Daddy told him the yarn.

His friend remarked that Daddy made jokes about everything and he fully expected him to rise up and tell a few at his own funeral.* The friend finished with the proverb, “A merry heart doeth good like a medicine.”

Daddy retorted, “Are you calling me a pill?”

*Daddy didn’t rise up and tell jokes at his funeral, but those who came to the visitation brought their favorites from his collection to share.