Knock, knock

“Tell a joke, mommy,” S said, as she and I lounged in the backyard one sunny afternoon. “Uh …” I said, because nobody has asked me to tell them a joke in a long time. All of a sudden I had the same anxiety I had in high school when one of the “cool kids” introduced me to someone and said, “She’s really funny. Say something funny, Juliana.” Gulp.

My kids are naturally gifted when it comes to spontaneous, physical comedy bits. They get this from their father.

My kids are naturally gifted when it comes to spontaneous, physical comedy bits. They get this from their father.

I blame S’s sudden interest in jokes on a joke book that her brother A took out from the school library (for two weeks in a row, unfortunately). For those two weeks I was hearing the same TERRIBLE jokes over and over and over again. (A: “What did the frog order from the fast food restaurant, Mommy?” Me: “I don’t know, what?” A: “A side of flies and a diet croak!” Me: “Ha … ha … huunngh” (curls into fetal position).

So now S wants a joke. I scour the dustiest part of my brain, the “childhood jokes” part …

“Um … Knock, knock!”
“… and then what?” She says.
“No, no … You have to say, ‘Who’s there?’”
“Who’s there.”
“Banana”
“Why?”
“No, now you say, ‘Banana Who?’”
“Who?”
“No, you say, ‘Banana, who?’”
“Banana who?”
“Knock, Knock.”
“Knock Knock?”
“No, you say, “Who’s there,” remember?”
“Oh. Who’s there?”
“Banana.”
“Oh! It’s a banana!”
“No, you say, ‘Banana who?'”
“Who!”
“No, Banana who?”
“Oh, Banana who?”
“Knock knock?”
“It’s a cialis5mg-online banana! I know that!”
“But you still say, ‘Who’s there?'”
“Oh, who’s there?”
“Banana.”
“Banana!”
“No … ‘banana who?'”
“Banana who!”
“Knock knock”
“Who?”
“You say, who’s there?”
“It’s a banana?”
“You have to say, ‘who’s there?'”
“Who’s there?”
“Orange.”
“What?”
“Now you say, ‘Orange who?'”
“Orange who?”
“… Orange you glad I didn’t say Banana!?”

And so, as unceremoniously and awkwardly as it began, my sad little joke came to a bitter end. But instead of the laughter I was expecting she gave me a blank look followed by a sad smile and a sympathetic chuckle, as if to say, “Oh, mother … that was terrible.”

What I should have said was, “A side of flies and a diet croak,” because in my house—in the 3-6 age demographic, at least—that punchline kills. 

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2 thoughts on “Knock, knock

  1. Leanne

    In my house, “your butt” is the punchline to every joke, and sometimes it’s not even me telling the joke…

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