Thursday, April 12, 2007

Genuine Knock Knock Jokes As Told By Genuine Children

"Knock knock."
"Who's there?"
"Orange."*
"Orange who?"
"Knock knock."
"Who's there?"
"Orange."
"Orange who?"
"Knock knock."
"Who's there?"
"Banana."
"Banana who?"
"Um..."
Knock jokes are kind of weird; it takes kids a while to get a handle on them. Maybe we could work up a sort of Piagetian developmental humor model enumerating key milestones of comedic sophistication:
Stage One – Fart Sounds
Stage Two – Nonsensical Knock Knock Jokes
Stage Three – Sensical Knock Knock Jokes
Stage Four – Scathing Sarcasm
Or something like that—it's a work in progress.

* This is when I knew we were in trouble.

7 comments:

  1. Do you have a fart machine? It's a great learning tool and wonderful at cocktail parties.

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  2. Hey, I still make that same mistake when telling that particular knock knock joke...

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  3. Someday, Fungi, someday.

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  4. Schecky came home with a new knock knock joke yesterday. Seems they kick it up a notch in 3rd grade...

    Knock Knock

    Who's there?

    Something Wildly Inappropriate

    Something Wildly Inappropriate Who?
    (said with trepidation)


    .... long pause.....

    Ummm, Mommy? I'm supposed to slap you really hard now....

    --------------------

    I thanked him for telling me, instead of slapping me. And went on to explain that slapping your mom was indeed wildly inappropriate. And that such an act would force me to send him to his room until he was dead....

    But the part of me that isn't forced to wear the "try to be a good parent hat" thought that this would be pretty funny if I saw it happen. To someone else....

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  5. New concept: knock-knock joke mashups.

    "Knock knock."
    "Who's there?"
    "Banana."
    "Banana who?"
    "Knock knock."
    "Who's there?"
    "Banana."
    "Banana who?"
    "Knock knock."
    "Who's--"
    "Moo!"

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  6. Actually the "Knock knock." "Who's there?" "Interrupting cow." "Interup--" "Moo!" joke is pretty much the only knock knock joke Louise actually knows and tells correctly. She happily repeates it over and over. It is, after all, one of the best jokes in the whole wide world.

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  7. Amazing how accurately my own children corroborate your theories. One additional twist I have observed is the insertion of fart sounds within jokes and songs in order to render them nonsensical: "twinkle twinkle little (fart sound), how I wonder what you (fart sound). up above the (fart sound) so (fart sound), like a diamond in the (fart sound), etc., followed by peals of laughter. then repeated at least 4 more times, with exactly the same result each time.
    I think there are probably a few more stages in between stages two and three of your Piagetian model: let's not forget the ceaseless, unfunny, and supremely annoying verbatim quotation of comedic skits and scenes from films, accompanied by scary, forced laughter.

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