Monty Python's the taxation of 'thingy' (...)

Wondering how to confuse your audience? A lesson in presentation skills from Monthy Python.

Published in Videos - 22 April 2016

Monthy Python strikes again, with the most confusing presentation opening ever.

Why is John Cleese’s Tax Collector character so hard to understand, even for his English-speaking colleagues? Because he starts out speaking in acryonyms and then uses big, complicated complex words to say something simple: we need something new to tax.

So remember, say it simply.

But the sketch gets even funnier when English modesty gets in the way. One of Cleese’s colleagues suggests taxing ‘thingy’, a fairly simple word that’s a euphemism!

So next time you find yourself trying to convince your colleagues to adopt a tax on sexual activity, remember, just say it simply.

Lexicon for Tax on Thingy sketch:

  1. If you get the nub of my gist >> if you know what I mean
  2. If I may put my head on the chopping block so that you can kick it around a bit >> if I can offer an idea, Python-speak that mocks the English habit of self-denigration
  3. Poopoos >> ‘caca’ or ‘number two’
  4. Number one >> pipi
  5. You should put a tax on all the people who stand in water >> says the man in the following scene who is, well, standing in water.

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