Judge John Hodgman Episode 240: Hockey Dockey Christmas


Dramatic sneezing, toothpaste storage in the shower, ugly Christmas plates, and British vs. American PCs. Judge Hodgman and Bailiff Jesse clear out the docket!

JUDGE JOHN HODGMAN IS AT SF SKETCHFEST next month! Get your tickets for our show in San Francisco on Friday January 8th. They're going fast! Plus, submit your Bay-Area based disputes to us at www.maximumfun.org/jjho. You NEED NOT have tickets to the show in order to submit a dispute, but you should be able to be present if selected.



It wasn't about loud sneezing, it was about siblings

I'd like to offer a bit of context I think The Honorable Judge Hodgeman missed in the loud sneezing decision. As the judge mentions often, he was an only child and his own children are only a few years apart and from what I gather, both still relatively young.

As someone who has children who are very far apart in age, 18, the oldest, and four, the youngest, and myself having siblings 10 and 15 years my junior, I picked up on a subtext in the young woman's complaint that wasn't addressed. Much older siblings find their much younger counterparts VERY annoying and can be, in retaliation, excessively cruel and that can take the form of monstrous pendantry.

The older sister was obviously trying to enjoin your respectable podcast in the bullying of her younger sister. She ignores the fact that her parents managed to raise her with awareness of sneezing etiquette and there is no reason to assume they would fail to do the same for the younger sister.

I do not disagree with your judgement in the slightest, I just expected a qualifier at the end that said something about understanding the context of their age and trusting her parents to raise her younger sister as well as they raised her. I don't think a decree on high from a fake internet court to be wielded by an unkind older sister against a child still in the process of learning is the sort of, "gentle and affectionate" rearing you championed.

former cruel sibling

New Title for the Show

"I don't see a world in which that's a real problem."
That just about sums up everything that gets discussed on the show, right?
I kid because I love.


Thanks for sending me down the YouTube rabbit hole that is Numberwang. I would totally watch that if it were a real show.

Considering the fact that

Considering the fact that there are numerous articles and advice that ask people to not let the water run as they brush their teeth, it seems rather wasteful to take it a step further and have the shower running while you do so. (Unless, of course, the lady in question is wildly skilled and shampoos/etc with one hand while brushing with the other.)

That aside, I have a question of practicality. One should brush their teeth more than once a day. If the toothpaste is in the shower, does she stand in the shower to brush her teeth at night or after meals, artfully dodging the deluge of water that comes out as she rinses her toothbrush? Is she an obsessive clean freak who showers every time she has to brush her teeth? As practical as it might seem to include brushing in her morning shower ritual, keeping the toothpaste in the shower seems impractical for every other time of day.

As for him, he should just get his own toothpaste and keep it right where he wants it.

I could not believe that the

I could not believe that the issue of water squandering didn't come up, at least from Jesse, living in drought-challenged CA. She likely wastes dozens of gallons of water a week standing there brushing in the shower. And it's hot water too, so she is paying more to brush her teeth! This verdict should be tossed based on her failure to be a responsible citizen.

What about the other time?

I really thought the judge was going to bring up the issue of what she does any other time she brushes her teeth. Having everything in the shower seems inconvenient when you are going to brush your teeth any other time during the day.
Brushing in the shower might work for her, but there's a reason most people don't do it. I think there is a grossness and safety issue involved. Think about it, there is nothing else in the shower you would put in your mouth. Even the remote risk of getting shampoo on my toothbrush is enough to make me never consider doing it. I think the judge underestimates the unpleasant effects of swallowing shampoo,

Sneezin' & Showerin'

Sneezes are so involuntary that you can break bones in your face by stifling one. Maybe you can control the intensity, but do you want to risk broken facial bones?

I'm a raucous laugher and a raucous sneezer. Loud sneezes don't have to be grosser than quiet ones. They might instead be a way to entertain or awaken others. We have personal sneeze styles for a reason, therefore I say sneeze so as to reveal your true self. If you can't be yourself when fate, or an airborne irritant, impels you to sneeze, when can you?

On toothpaste in the shower: A dental hygienist with whom I share a neuro-atypicality once advised me to floss in the shower. Modern dentistry recognizes the shower as an appropriate location for tooth & gum care.

-- Yasha in Seattle

Yasha, you're the best.

Thank you for the flossing tip. Keep on a-laughin' and a-sneezin' raucously!

wikipedia podcast

Bailiff Jesse/Owner of Maximum Fun network Jesse Thorn,

Just so you know, one of the shows on your network features a segment extremely similar to what you were describing in this week's episode- a podcast that's just reading the funny bits of different wikipedia pages. The show is Baby Geniuses, and the segment (which is about 1/4-1/3 of the total running time of the episodes) is called Wiki of the Week. I'm surprised you didn't mention that, or perhaps you were not aware. Anyhow, Merry Christmas!

wiki of the week

Hey so you guys know Baby Geniuses already has a Wiki Of The Week segment, right?