A joke is a short story or short series of words spoken or communicated with the intent of being laughed at or found humorous by the listener or reader. This sort of "joke" is not the same as a practical joke.

Laughter, the intended human reaction to jokes, is healthy, uses the stomach muscles, and releases endorphins, natural happiness-inducing chemicals, into the bloodstream. Daily laughter is recommended to every human being. Jokes have been the subject of serious academic study, a notable example being Sigmund Freud's "Jokes and Their Relationship to the Unconscious".

See also: Internet humor, Lightbulb joke, insult, Knock knock joke

Table of contents
1 Types of jokes
2 Other Examples of Jokes
3 External links

Types of jokes

Blonde jokes

Blonde jokes are jokes about people, generally women, who have blonde hair and are assumed not to be very smart. These jokes are generally considered to be derogatory, but are usually taken with good humor. They are usually variants on traditional ethnic jokes.

Sexist jokes

A sexist joke is one that expresses the sexist belief that one gender or sex is somehow superior to the other.


;How do you fix a woman's watch?

You don't. There's a clock on the oven!

;Why does a man have a hole in the end of his penis?
To get oxygen to his brain!

Ethnic jokes

An ethnic joke relies for humorous effect on stereotypes about particular ethnicities, often those from different (neighbour) nations or minorities. For example Finns tell jokes about Swedes and Gypsies. Sometimes they are considered in good taste, meant to poke fun at about another culture, while other times they are considered offensive or racist. Sometimes the difference between the two judgements is in the nature of the joke itself, and sometimes the difference is in the perception of those hearing it.

In an attempt to preserve the humor of ethnic jokes without their derogatory nature, on rare occasions such jokes are told with the word ethnic or some variant in place of the nationality of the subject. For example: "Two ethnics are out duck hunting. They hunt and hunt and hunt and still have not killed one duck. Finally, ethnic #1 says to ethnic #2: 'Maybe we'd do better if we threw the dog up higher.' " Another twist is letting people of that same target group enjoy a monopoly on telling jokes about themselves.


  • An old gypsy goes to his local council and says, "My wife has become ill, and we need to come off the road. Can we have a council house?"

  • A Somali stole a magic bottle from a bazaar. He opened the bottle and a spirit came out. The spirit promised two wishes to man who got him free. Somali thought a moment and answered: "First, I'd like to be fully white, and second I'd want to go inside a white women." The Somali was turned into a tampon.

See also Newfie.

Playing the dozens

Playing the dozens is one slang term for the verbal game played by African-American men in which they take turns telling one-line jokes to each other that insult their mother or another family member. The object of the game is to tell the best joke, usually after each person has been given twelve tries.


Your Mama is so fat...

  • when I said it was chilly outside, she grabbed a spoon and ran out the door!
  • when she hauls ass, she needs help!
  • when she wears a red dress, people yell "hey, Kool-aid!"
  • her favorite food is seconds!
  • when she goes to the zoo, elephants throw HER peanuts!
  • when she jumps into the air, she gets stuck!

Your Mama is so old...
  • when God said "let there be light", she flipped the switch!

Your sister is so ugly...
  • that when she was born the doctor slapped your mother!''

Your brother is so stupid...
  • that he was fired from the M & Ms factory for throwing away all the Ws!''

Political jokes

Political jokes tell about politicians and heads of states.


  • A child, an honest politician, and Santa Claus all spot a $20 bill on the ground. Who picks it up? The child, since the other two are imaginary.

  • Bush approved of a new method of testing ready-to-eat meat for the potentially lethal Listeria bacteria found in factories. According to the legislation, ready-to-eat meat will have to pass standardized tests as part of Bush's "leave no hot dog behind" campaign.

See also: You have two cows

Why did the chicken cross the road?

;Why did the chicken cross the road?

To get to the other side.

This is a highly popular joke, with many alternate punchlines, and variants where "chicken" is substituted for something else. An example of a variant joke is:

;Why did the tachyon cross the road?

Because it was on the other side.

Profession-targeted jokes

These target the perceived flaws of people in certain trades. Lawyer jokes are traditionally popular in the United States.

Italians trade jokes about the Carabinieri national police force, and this fact is rather good-humouredly acknowledged even in the force's own website, probably because the Carabinieri know that, jokes aside, they do enjoy a high degree of respect. Carabinieri are factually known to be occasionally willing tell a few such jokes themselves. It is also known that they have a small office in Rome devoted to tracking, developing and collecting jokes (but this is a joke).


  • Our officers, eager to keep their patrol cars clean, will capsize it at the end of every shift in order to empty the ashtray. [Adapted from the official Carabinieri website].

Other Examples of Jokes

External links