LAUGH LINES : Punchlines

Cirque du O.J.: "Johnnie Cochran quoted Abraham Lincoln. He couldn't quote George Washington. After all, he said, 'I cannot tell a lie.' " (Jay Leno)

* "Johnnie's closing sermon was so persuasive that he's been granted tax-exempt status." (Brad Halpern)

* "Which Gospels did Cochran quote? Matthew, John, Luke and Mark Fuhrman." (Tony Peyser)

* "After listening to Cochran's inflammatory remarks, no one could ever accuse him of practicing civil law." (Steve Tatham)

* "Cochran said that O.J. is entitled to an acquittal. You know something, he's got a point. He certainly paid for one." (Leno)

* "Johnnie said he would take the jury on a 'journey towards justice.' Yeah. On the highway of hype, down the lane of lies, ending up in the alley of alibis." (Bill Williams)

* "Cochran's 'journey to justice' speech raises one key question: Can the jury trust the travel agent?" (Stan Kaplan)


In the news: Cutler Daily Scoop, on the first anniversary of the "contract with America": "One question: Has this contract paid off as well as the one Newt signed with Rupert Murdoch?"

Peyser, on Gov. Pete pulling out of the 1996 presidential race: "Wilson said that he will decide next week what other candidate he'll ask his supporter to back."

Comedy writer Bob Mills, on the passage of Rep. Sonny Bono's first bill: "Even Democrats concede that Sonny now has a real voice in Congress, even though it's still off-key."

Comedy writer Alan Ray, on Dan Quayle being in charge of GOP fund raising: "Republicans see this as a key strategy. They know you should always start any sales pitch with a joke."

Ray, on Ross Perot starting his own party: "He criticizes those without direction, vision and focus. But enough about his barber."

Comedy writer Jerry Perisho, on the new $100 bill: "Officials are keeping some features quiet. On the back, if you look closely at the White House, you'll see Bill Clinton climbing out a window."

Comic Jenny Church, on Disney planning a live-action film of Mr. Magoo: "The studio wants to cast the ultimate bumbling old man with no vision, but Jesse Helms wants to see a script first."

Comic Argus Hamilton, on a judge ordering Woody Allen to pay Mia Farrow's lawyers $1 million and denying him child custody: "The judge also warned him that if he didn't start making his movies funny again, he's going to jail."


Rhoda Chapman of Venice invited her niece's family to spend the night in her two-bedroom home. As they entered the house, Steven, 5, asked where his room was. When Chapman said he'd be sleeping on an air mattress, he asked to see it. As she opened the door to a storage area to show him, Steven immediately asked:

"I'm going to sleep in the closet?"

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