Comic Keith Nelson, on allegations Congressman Dan Rostenkowski paid ghost employees who did little or no work: "Replied Rostenkowski: 'It's the Post Office. What's your point?' "

And from David Letterman: "Congressman Rostenkowski, Mr. John Gotti. Mr. John Gotti, Congressman Rostenkowski. Hope you boys hit it off."


Short takes: The FBI recently raided the headquarters of a white supremacist group. Agents found the usual racist symbols, says comic Argus Hamilton: "Swastikas, rebel flags and menus from Denny's."

Comedy writer Tony Peyser, on President Clinton easing trade sanctions against China: "He reasoned that although China hadn't made any improvements in human rights, it did agree to make Kung Pao Chicken with 50% less fat."

Jay Leno says that when Darryl Strawberry went to Dodger Stadium to clean out his locker, he found that the DEA had already beaten him to it.

Ernie Kreiling of Indian Wells likes the TV series "Frasier," particularly this line from Niles Crane, Frasier's brother and also a psychiatrist:

"Lawyers are my favorite patients. They have great medical plans and they never get well."


Uncle! Laugh Lines has received at least a dozen submissions with four variations of this joke:

A man moves from his old neighborhood and returns 20 years later. He checks out his old haunts and visits his old house, where he finds a jacket he had left behind. Inside the coat is a stub for shoes that he had left for the shoemaker to repair.

He goes to the shop and, sure enough, the same shoemaker is still there. He hands the stub to the shoemaker, who goes to the back of the shop for a minute, then returns and says:

"They'll be ready Thursday."


Pet watch: The Barney craze is out of control, says comic Ed Markey: "Now they're coming out with a line of Barney cosmetics. The manufacturer is already coming under fire because it's been testing the products on stuffed animals."

Leno, on news that Barney is being made into a movie: "How many people would be happier if Barney was made into a belt or shoes instead?"

Comic Bruce Bellingham says game-show host Bob Barker "might be the first animal rights activist to be sued for heavy petting."

Guy Halferty of Hesperia tells about the veterinarian and taxidermist who went into partnership: "Their slogan: Either way, you get your dog back."


Reader Beverly Rose of Ojai tells of the time her son Jeff, then 3, climbed into her father's lap:

"Grandpa," he wondered, "how come you have so much hair in your nose but none on your head?"

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