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Trike Daily Humor

Postmodern Zen Koans

“If you see a Buddha in the road, ask which gender pronouns they prefer and then kill them.”

By Elisa Abatsis
Postmodern Zen Koans
Illustration by Mike Taylor

If you see a Buddha in the road, ask which gender pronouns they prefer and then kill them.

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One day Atticus lay down in the snow, and called out, “Help me up! Help me up!” His mother came and gave him some cold-pressed juice. Atticus got up and went away because that’s how unschooling works.

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What is your original personal brand before you were born?

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If a minimalist curates a 10-item fall capsule wardrobe but doesn’t blog the experience and doesn’t count her Acne Pistol Boots as one of the 10 items, has she really edited her closet?

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A conceptual sculptor asked Tobias when he was weighing some flax at Whole Foods, “What is Buddha?” Tobias said: “Flax helped me lose three pounds. It’s also my daughter’s name.”

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If a performance artist self-flagellates at MoMa while it’s closed and there are no guards or cameras there, does it still leave a laceration in the shape of a pentagram?

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As the roof was leaking, a yoga instructor told two students to bring something to catch the water. One brought the landlord, the other a bucket with ice. The first was severely reprimanded, the second highly retweeted.

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What is the sound of a pop star rapping?

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A MFA student asked her professor, “How does an enlightened one return to the ordinary world?” The professor reminded her that he was only an adjunct but alerted her to the fact that Starbucks does offer health insurance to part-time employees.

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Read more about Zen koans on Tricycle:


“Postmodern Zen Koans” originally appeared in McSweeney’s, and is reprinted by permission


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