2020 was a tough year for America. And for many Americans. Communities Digital News lost Robert “Peabod” Taylor. I met Bob at the base of a Mayan Pyramid on a travel trip. And I instantly liked him.
Bob was a gifted travel writer for more than three decades. Following a career as an award winning sports producer/anchor, Taylor’s media production business produced marketing presentations for Switzerland Tourism, Rail Europe, the Finnish Tourist Board, Japan Railways Group, the Swedish Travel & Tourism Council and the Swiss Travel System among others. Bob loved to take other travelers to explore the world he lived through his Magellean Travel Club.
Bob’s first passion was baseball, and he played for a bit. Even becoming a part of sandlot history (The 50th anniversary of baseball’s longest uninterrupted game). Bob often relied on baseball for a memory or analogy. Or just a reminder to keep breathing with humor. Living with ALS with baseball legend’s Yogi Berra’s point of view was a column that took a positive look at life. It was Yogi Berra that said “It’s tough to make predictions, especially about the future.”
Bob’s wanted to become a member of the Traveler’s Century Club, traveling to 100 countries. I know he came close before he began his battle against amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). Bob wrote about his diagnosis and Living with ALS in 2016. He continued traveling and writing about it as long as he could. When he could no longer travel, he traveled through his memories, sharing his favorite places with us.
I loved receiving his articles but also dreaded them. They often left me in tears, not of pity, but of amazement at how Bob chose to live his life, even as he knew it was slipping away. He could make you laugh, then cry, with the twist of a word.
Through his remarkable talent, I knew he felt bittersweet about Christmas in 2019 and that he loved his wife, GiGi, often giving her public words of thanks as she tirelessly took care of Bob. His Grandchildren were his joys, as were his children. William and his love of firetrucks took center state in one column. (Living with ALS: Superheroes Gigi, William and Charlotte’s Firefighters)
Bob was there, filing, often multiple times a week. Travel, pop culture, ALS, politics, sports, and his life, which was always interesting and often surprising.
I can think of no better way to remember my friend than to remember one of my favorite columns that he wrote in January of 2019. Bob lived with hope. Not for a cure, but for more time.
So in Bob “Peabod” Taylors memory, let’s have a laugh. He would like that.
Political Cartoons by Al Goodwyn for Creators Syndicate
CHARLOTTE, NC: Happy New Year! They say that ALS is no laughing matter, but the truth is that laughter is often the best medicine. With that in mind, here’s a personal selection of some of my favorite bad jokes to start the year off right.
Some come from my childhood, others from the children of my children. Either way, they ought to bring a little humor into your lives.
And these jokes are good for the whole family to share and enjoy.
Now laugh. Or at least chuckle.
When do cows go to sleep?
When it’s pasture bedtime.
What’s the oddest thing that happens with a hypochondriac support group?
Members call in sick, but they all show up for the meeting.
After Adam stayed out late a few nights, Eve became suspicious.
“You’re running around with another woman—admit it!” she screamed.
“What other woman?” Adam shouted. “You’re the only one for me!” That night, Adam was awakened by Eve poking him in the chest.
“What are you doing?”
“Counting your ribs.”
Snake 1: Are we poisonous?
Snake 2: I don’t know. Why?
Snake 1: I just bit my lip.
How did Louis XIV feel after completing the Palace of Versailles?
My ancestors wandered lost in the wilderness for 40 years because even in biblical times, men would not stop to ask for directions.
What yearbook superlative was Robert E. Lee given at graduation?
Most likely to secede.
A Frenchman walks into a library and asks for a book on warfare.
The librarian replies, “You’ll only lose it.”
What did the green grape say to the purple grape?
The police are called to an apartment and find a woman standing over a lifeless man, holding a bent and twisted five-iron.
The detective asks, “Is that your husband?”
“Yes,” replies the woman.
“Did you hit him with the golf club?”
“I did,” she sobs.
“How many times did you hit him?”
“I don’t know,” she replies. “Five, six, maybe seven times. Oh look, just put me down for five.”
You’re riding a horse at full speed while being chased by a lion and there’s a giraffe in the way in front of you. How will you escape this highly dangerous situation?
Get off the carousel.
A husband texts his wife one bitterly cold winter morning:
His wife texts back, “Pour lukewarm water over it.”
Five minutes later he answers: “Computer completely messed up now.”
Late one night, Norm’s doorbell rang. When he answered the door, he found a six-foot-tall cockroach standing in front of him. The bug grabbed Norm by the collar, punched him in the eye, threw him across the living room and then ran off.
The next day, Norm went to his doctor to have his bruised eye examined.
“Ah, yes,” the doctor said. “There’s a nasty bug going around.”
A distraught senior citizen dialed her doctor’s office. “Is it true,” she asked, “that the medication you prescribed has to be taken for the rest of my life?”
“Yes, I’m afraid so,” said the doctor.”
After a long moment of silence, the woman replied, “I’m wondering, then, just how serious my condition is because this prescription is marked ‘No Refills.’”
Fresh out of gift ideas, a man buys his mother-in-law a large plot in an expensive cemetery. On her next birthday, he buys her nothing, so she phones him, furious.
“What are you complaining about?” he fires back. “You still haven’t used the present I gave you last year.”
The burial service for the elderly woman climaxed with a massive clap of thunder, followed by a bolt of lightning, accompanied by even more thunder.
“Well,” said her husband to the pastor, “she’s there.”
Comic Sans, Helvetica, and Times New Roman walk into a bar.
“Get out!” shouts the barman. “We don’t serve your type here!
An amnesiac walks into a bar.
He walks up to a beautiful blonde and says, “So, do I come here often?”
A neutron walks into a bar.
“How much for a beer?” the neutron asks.
“For you?” says the bartender. “No charge.”
A panda walks into a bar.
He gobbles some beer nuts, then pulls out a pistol, fires it in the air, and heads for the door.
“Hey!” shouts the bartender, but the panda yells back,
“I’m a panda. Google me!”
Sure enough, the definition of a panda:
“A tree-climbing mammal with distinct black-and-white coloring. Eats shoots and leaves.”
A cowboy walks into a bar.
His hat is made of brown wrapping paper.
His shirt and vest are made of waxed paper.
And his chaps, pants, and boots are made of tissue paper.
Pretty soon they arrest him for rustling.
Now my favorite bar joke:
A Roman walks into a bar, holds up two fingers and says, “Five beers, please!”
Finally, for all my ALS friends who share my affliction without being able to use their arms, here’s this:
While cleaning out the garage, I found an old protest sign that read, “DISARM TODAY!”
On the other side, it said, “DAT ARM TOMORROW.”