Everyone has heard about the Nobel prize, and that a lot of people take it very seriously, especially within the fields it's awarded to. But academia celebrates it's funny solutions to problems too, the Ig Nobel prize.
The most funny thing about this prize is that the winners are genuinely happy to receive it, because some of the smartest people in the world has come together and read one of your works. It may not be equally impressive as the real deal, but the vast majority of recipients are genuinely happy to receive it. Fifteen minutes of fame is better than none, even amongst researchers.
On the other hand, it can also sting badly. Here is what scientists being sarcastic have to say about the banking system in September 2010:
ECONOMICS PRIZE: The executives and directors of Goldman Sachs, AIG, Lehman Brothers, Bear Stearns, Merrill Lynch, and Magnetar for creating and promoting new ways to invest money — ways that maximize financial gain and minimize financial risk for the world economy, or for a portion thereof.