Taking a shot at joke-writing

I like to think of myself as a humorist (somebody has to do it). I deal in the long form, incessantly bemoaning an obscure point until hopefully I think of some type of amusing payoff.

Humor writing is far different from joke writing, which is the short form. Because of its emphasis on brevity, I think joke writing is much harder, and have never felt very comfortable tackling it.

But today, I thought I’d give it a shot. I don’t necessarily promise quality here, so be forewarned. Please proceed with caution.

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So a preacher, a rabbi and a priest die, and find themselves at the Heavenly Gates to meet St. Peter.

“I appreciate the diversity you’re showing me,” St. Peter tells them. “But I think these days, there should also be an imam here.”

“But we thought that was a separate heaven,” said the preacher.

“All three of us are of the Judeo-Christian ethic, and didn’t think we’d need to be accompanied by someone of the Muslim faith,” said the rabbi.

“No,” said St. Peter. “The heaven of Islam is the same as the heaven for you.”

“So, remind me,” said the priest. “How many virgins is that again?’

+++

A dog walks into a bar and orders a gin and tonic.

“I’m not sure I can serve you,” says the bartender. “Are you 21?”

“Don’t be ridiculous,” says the dog. “Dogs rarely live to be that age.”

“Are you at least 21 in dog years?” the bartender asks.

“It’s not as easy to calculate as you’ve heard,” the dog responds. “I was born two years ago but after just one year of maturation, we’re able to reproduce. So I’d say I’m well past legal age.”

“I’m sorry,” says the bartender. “I’ve always heard it was one dog year equals seven human years, so that makes you only 14. I can’t give you a gin and tonic.”

“But I’m really thirsty,” says the dog. “Can you at least show me the way to the toilet?”

+++

Why did the chicken cross the road?

The question implies that the chicken had a reason for crossing the road, and that’s an irrational application of anthropomorphism, the attribution of human characteristics to non-human entities. Either the chicken passed over the roadway for the merely random reason that if he was to walk at all, he had to walk in some direction. Or, more likely, he spotted a grain of corn or other seed on the opposite shoulder and was headed that way so he could provide himself a measure of sustenance.

As members of the bird family, chickens have very good vision, and could easily spot a kernel of corn across the street.

Most people don’t realize that.

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A traveling salesman shows up at a farmer’s house and asks if he can’t rent a room for the night. The farmer responds that the only spare bed is in his daughter’s room. She’s home from college, where she’s majoring in etymology, the study of words. But as long as the salesman promises there’s no hanky-panky, the farmer will let him share the room with her.

In the middle of the night, the salesman awakes to find the daughter hovering above him, about to give him a kiss.

“What’s the meaning of this?” stammers the salesman.

“‘This’ is a grammatical word used to indicate somebody or something already mentioned or identified or something understood by both the speaker and the hearer,” responds the daughter.

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Me: I have a knock-knock joke, but you have to start it.

You: Ok, knock-knock.

Me: Who’s there?

You: ?!?!?!?!?!?

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The little moron shows up at his middle school guidance counselor’s office, and says he’s concerned he won’t be able to go to high school next year because he doesn’t have a ladder.

“Don’t call yourself a ‘moron,'” the counselor chides the young man. “You have learning and other developmental disabilities, possibly related to an attention deficit disorder and/or a chemical imbalance in your brain that predisposes you to hyperactivity.”

“Huh?” asks the little moron. “I have no idea what any of that means.”

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What do you get when you cross Glenn Beck and Newt Gingrich?

A creative and compelling argument about how homosexuality represents a hallowed feature of the American experience.

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A lawyer appears in court completely disheveled. His pants leg is torn, he’s missing a shoe, and there’s a large bruise on his right cheek.

“What happened to you?” the judge demanded.

“I tripped on a banana skin out in the hallway and fell,” the attorney responded.

“That’s no excuse for showing up in my courtroom is such an awful state,” the judge answers. “I’m throwing out your case.”

“That’s too bad,” the lawyer says. “I hate to lose on appeal.”

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How many husbands does it take to screw in a lightbulb?

Five.

One to select a bulb with the wrong wattage.

One to improperly unscrew the bowl from the ceiling.

One to pick an energy-efficient light when it’s obvious that brighter lumination is needed for reading at that particular location.

One to stand on a chair instead of using a perfectly good stepladder.

And one to suggest “why don’t I just blow a hole in the damn ceiling with my shotgun and we’ll call it a skylight?”

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Your momma is so old, so fat and so ugly that it would be a disgrace to make fun of her condition.

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5 Responses to “Taking a shot at joke-writing”

  1. neuroaster Says:

    Q: Why did the president of the National Rifle Association cross the road?

    A: He was chicken-hunting 🙂

    Q: Why did the animal-rights-activist cross the road?

    A: He had to jump in front of the moving-vehicle that was about to run over the chicken 🙂

    Q: Why did Colonel Sanders cross the road?

    A: He had a craving for roadkill 🙂

    Q: Why did the Jehovah’s Witness cross the road?

    A: He had to give the chicken a copy of The Watchtower, quick, before the Latter-Day-Saint at the other side of the road had a chance to give the chicken a copy of The Book of Mormon ! ! !

    Q: Why did the behaviorist cross the road?

    A: All we know is that the chicken appears to be an incentive 🙂

  2. Stentorphone Says:

    “Either the chicken passed over the roadway for the merely random reason that if he was to walk at all, he had to walk in some direction.”

    Ummm, Davis, I know you didn’t grow up on a farm (unless it was a funny farm…), but chickens are female. Males are referred to as roosters.

    I imagine you’ll be hearing from Mother Hen on this one fairly soon, so-heads up!

  3. Ministry Fox Says:

    My favourite is the priest one, but they all have a touch of Davis W about them.

  4. jedwardswright Says:

    Mother Hen here, with thanks to Mr/Ms Stentorphone for clearing up the chicken/rooster gender issue. Honestly, can you imagine the insuing kerfuffle should Mother Hen refer to Mr. W as a woman?
    One further note on that subject: chickens do not have balls, therefore the term “chicken balls,” like the term “chicken fingers,” is completely ridiculous! (Excuse Mother Hen for a moment as she accesses her smelling salts. The very idea of chickens as human food! Nasty!)
    No, Mother would prefer at this point to take exception to the “a chicken crossing the road” statement as “an irrational application of anthropomorphism.” Next Mr. W will be telling us that that dogs can’t talk and cows do not have feelings!
    Clearly, Mr. W has not been paying proper attention to his correspondance, or he would know that he is personally in contact with a chicken who types.
    Miffed,
    Mother Hen

  5. jedwardswright Says:

    Mother Hen here, with thanks to Mr/Ms Stentorphone for clearing up the chicken/rooster gender issue. Honestly, can you imagine the insuing kerfuffle should Mother Hen refer to Mr. W as a woman?
    One further note on that subject: chickens do not have balls, therefore the term “chicken balls,” like the term “chicken fingers,” is completely ridiculous! (Excuse Mother Hen for a moment as she accesses her smelling salts. The very idea of chickens as human food! Nasty!)
    No, Mother would prefer at this point to take exception to the “a chicken crossing the road” statement as “an irrational application of anthropomorphism.” Next Mr. W will be telling us that that dogs can’t talk and cows do not have feelings!
    Clearly, Mr. W has not been paying proper attention to his correspondance, or he would know that he is personally in contact with a chicken who types.
    Miffed,
    Mother Hen
    http://motherhensnest.wordpress.com

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