My five-year-old son likes to tell me a joke every night at bedtime. Now, he's been doing this for about six months now, so, without any new jokes coming into the rotation, so you'd think we'd both be bored with it, right?
Ah, but you didn't count on the power of joke mutation! The L'il Swoggler (LS for short) started off with the usual "Why did the chicken cross the road?" -- an old standby, always popular. But, whenever I give him an answer, his punchline changes. As with everybody else's kids, it doesn't make much sense, but it changes.
These days, it goes something like this:
LS: Daddy, why did the cow cross the road?
GBH: I don't know, why?
LS: To get to the cow-cow!
LS: Wait, Daddy! What about the second joke?
LS: Why did the cow cross the road?
GBH: Because it was tired?
LS: No, silly -- to get to the mauw-mauw!
He gets the timing of a punchline -- he sells it the right way, and all that -- but he doesn't seem to have realized that a punchline is supposed to do things like make sense or even contain recognizable words.
And he goes to kindergarten in a month and a half -- who knows what that will do to his sense of humor...
Listening to: Tom Waits - Lucinda / Ain't Goin' Down To The Well [Live]