What the World Needs Now Are Jokes, Sweet Jokes …

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One of the best laughs I’ve enjoyed in a very long time was with my favorite 5- and 7-year olds during a sleepover last weekend. We had a “movie night” complete with what the 5-year-old calls “movie tables” (TV trays) that held popcorn and ice cream sandwiches. We three were decked out in our jammies with pillows and thin summer blankets, snuggled up on the couch to watch the DVD “Happy Feet”.

“Happy Feet” is about Mumble the penguin (played by Elijah Wood), who doesn’t fit in with the other penguins because he can’t sing, and to find a mate, each penguin needs a heart song. But Mumble can tap dance, which of course saves the day for the penguins in the end. For little kids, it’s a sweet story about a penguin who overcomes feeling like a misfit, but for older kids and adults, the subplots touch on immigration, pollution and the damage humans have done to the oceans and its creatures. Those parts weren’t so funny.

Some of the best lines are delivered by Ramon, one of the Amigo penguins, played by Robin Williams.

Mumble: [to the leopard seal] See you fatty!

[the Amigos suddenly stop walking and slowly turn toward Mumble]

Ramon: That’s cool! “See you fatty!”

[Amigos laugh]

Ramon: Did it take you a while to come up with that one? Alright, way to go tall guy.

Rinaldo: [reaching up to high-five Mumble] Gimme fin! Gimme fin!

Trust me. It’s funny. You had to be there.

This is a movie my grandkids have watched alone at my house before, quietly, as I puttered around and did my thing. Movies can be such wonderful babysitters. Thank you, Mr. Disney.

This time, I sat down with both kids and discovered a whole other kind of experience.

The kids understood many of the jokes (there’s the requisite potty humor and a small degree of harmless sexual innuendo), and when they did, they laughed, and nearly every time, they then looked quickly to me to see if I was laughing, too. This made me laugh, which made the kids laugh that much harder. I’m sure to my neighbors taking an evening stroll by my house, the unbridled hysteria emanating from my living room must have sounded like a whole lot of something going on. There was; the unrestrained laughter between two grandkids and their Noni. No cell phone, no other adults competing for my attention, and nothing more important in the world at that moment than those kids, a funny movie and an excuse to laugh our heads off.

I thought back to the times when the kids watched the movie alone while I was busy doing something else, and in retrospect, they hadn’t laughed out loud much. And I know that if I’d watched it alone (which I wouldn’t), I may have chuckled, but I wouldn’t have laughed out loud, either. Together, our combined laughter was an infectious bonding experience:

The next morning, the first words out of their mouths (after, “what’s for breakfast”?) were about how hard we laughed at the movie, and how much fun it was, which set the kids into reciting their favorite lines.

“Kiss this!”

I know there may be times when I sorely need to plug in a movie as a distraction for my favorite little people when it’s imperative to get something done, but if I can at all manage it, from now on, if they’re watching a movie, I’m going to stop everything, get out the movie tables, make some movie snacks and welcome the opportunity for laughter.

With that in mind, considering the fact that everyone doesn’t have access to children to watch movies with, and considering that we all need a laugh now, more than ever, I’ve created this column for us today.

I’ll start, and I hope you’ll participate by sharing your favorite jokes in the comments section. (Use your best judgement, please, and we will all make Barbara Rice very happy.)

Also, this is also a good time to try our first-ever pun-off competition, a suggestion by reader Candace Corbin. I’ve never been very punny, but I admire those who have it down to a fine art form (ex-husband No. 1 comes to mind). If you’re one of those gifted punster people, show us what you’ve got in the comments section.

These first two jokes come from my favorite 7-year-old, who shared it at a recent family dinner:

Q: What do you get if you remove the eye from a fish?
A: Fsssh

Q: How do you tell a snowman from a snow woman?
A: Snowballs. 

My favorite 5-year-old thought she had the joke pattern figured out, and told her version of her brother’s snowball joke during a Skype call to Uncle Joe this week.

Q: How do you tell a snowman from a snow woman? 
A: Snow boobs. 

Moving along …

Q: What do you get if you cross a parrot with a shark?
A: A bird that will talk your ear off.

Q: What do you get when you cross a porcupine and a turtle?
A: A slowpoke

Onto some of my favorite adult jokes…

Q: What do you get when you cross a penis with a potato?
A: A dictator. 

Q: What do you get when you cross a pickle with a deer? 
A: A dildo.

I have a few more, but they are too nasty. I already shared my favorite erotic/kinky joke a few weeks back, but if you missed it:

Q: What’s the difference between erotic and kinky?
A: Erotic uses a feather. Kinky uses the whole chicken.

OK, now it’s your turn. It this works out, we’ll do it again.

More laughter.

Less of the other stuff, please.

Doni Chamberlain
Independent online journalist Doni Chamberlain founded what’s now known as anewscafe.com in 2007 with her son, Joe Domke. Chamberlain is an award-winning newspaper opinion columnist, feature and food writer recognized by the Associated Press, the California Newspaper Publishers Association and E.W. Scripps. She lives in Redding, California.
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70 Responses

  1. Avatar Tim says:

    Mahatma Gandhi, who usually walked barefoot, had impressive calluses on his feet. He also ate very little which made him rather frail. And his odd diet gave him bad breath.

    This made him what? A super callused fragile mystic plagued with halitosis

  2. Avatar Beverly Stafford says:

    I know only one joke. Really, that’s it, just one. Barbara? Doni? Is this acceptable?

    We’ve all heard what great lovers Irish men are. The secret is their foreplay which is, “Brace yerself, Kathryn Mary.”

  3. Jim Dowling Jim Dowling says:

    Serious? The whole chicken?

  4. Yes, yes, yes! To enjoying these fleeting moments with grandchildren. I am keenly aware that right now the most important thing going on in my life is savoring time with my three granddaughters. Last night we danced at Mosquito Serenade – it was a billion degrees and there was sweat dripping from our faces. But I know that I only get a few years of “dance with me, Meemer!” By gosh, I will dance. And laugh. Yes. This is what goes into the memory banks.

    My all-time favorite riddle (I STILL chuckle when I tell it. I’m a doofus like that – my grown-up kids roll their eyes.)

    How many ears does Davy Crockett have?
    Three: His left ear, his right ear and his Wild Front Ear.

    • You’ve nailed it about grandchildren. I can totally picture you at the Mosquito Serenade. (You win the Meemer prize in my book; not just attending it, but getting up and dancing in that heat.)

      Love your joke. You made me laugh out loud.

      p.s. Erin, maybe this isn’t the place for this but you were the main character in my dream the other night … a nightmare, actually. You’d shown up at my house for a pasta-making class. You said you were early, but it didn’t matter because I’d completely forgotten about it. You were so chill and understanding, and I’m racing around, realizing I had 7 other women coming to my house in 30 minutes. My house was a mess, I was a mess, I had no snacks for you ladies, and was out of eggs and flour, the only two ingredients needed to make pasta. But you just smiled, and were absolutely nonplussed by my chaos.

      I woke up appreciating you so much for being understanding. Thanks, Erin! Even in my dreams you’re awesome.

      • That’s hysterical. I love it. I wonder if it was the same night I dreamed I showed up to an important gig without sound equipment or guitars? 🙂 Glad to find that my dream-self offered up some chill – made my day. Thanks.

  5. Avatar Jim Bremer says:

    I’ll cheat and share this one I just saw on FB.
    Make sure your Viagra says Made in America because you don’t want Russians meddling in your erections.

  6. Barbara Rice Barbara Rice says:

    A cat died and went to heaven. God said, “You’ve been a good cat. You can have anything you want.”
    The cat said, “All my life I had to sleep on hard floors. I would like a big fluffy pillow to sleep on.” Poof! A giant pillow appears and the cat happily curls up on it.

    A few days later, six mice die and go to heaven. God says, “You’ve been good mice. You can have anything you want.” One of the mice says, “We’ve been chased by crazy women with brooms. We would like roller skates so we can get away.” Poof! Six sets of tiny roller skates appear and the mice put them on and skate away.

    A few days after that, God stops by to see how the cat is doing. “Oh, I just love it here,” the cat says. “My new pillow is so soft and warm. Everyone is so nice to me. And those meals on wheels are just delicious!”

  7. A good friend of mine handed me an unusual gift right before he passed away.

    What the hell am I supposed to do with an EpiPen?

  8. Deb Deb says:

    Kid joke:

    Q: Where do Generals keep their Armies?
    A: In their Sleevies!

  9. Avatar Michelle T. says:

    Ok, this is one of my favorite jokes ever.

    So I went to a zoo recently. They only had one animal, a dog. It was a Shih Tzu.

  10. Avatar Candace says:

    The furniture store keeps calling me back but all I wanted was one night stand.

  11. Avatar Erin says:

    Q: How do you catch a squirrel?
    A: Climb a tree and act like a nut.

    Q: Where do pirates keep their buccaneers?
    A: Under their buccanhats.

    None of us have the time for me to delve into my dad’s collection of puns 🙂

  12. Avatar Candace says:

    A dyslexic man walks into a bra

  13. Hal Johnson Hal Johnson says:

    My bride told me this one. Hm.

    A husband and wife, both newly retired, sat chatting after finishing breakfast.

    Him: “Y’know, the doctor says that I could live to be 100, but since I retired, sometimes I think about dying.”
    Her: “Well, honey, I suppose that’s only natural. We’re done with our careers. Sometimes I think about dying, too.”
    Him: “If I died first, do you think you would remarry?”
    Her: “Well, I would miss you terribly, but I’ve enjoyed being married, so if it felt right, I suppose I would remarry.”

    The husband is a little taken aback, despite thinking he was ready for her answer.

    Him: “Well, if you remarried, would you stay in this house with your new husband?”
    Her: “Well, we’ve put a lot of time and money into getting this house the way we want it. I love this house, and selling it would be like losing you again. So, yes, I suppose we would stay in this house.”
    Him: “So if you remarried, and you stayed in this house, would he sleep in our bed?”
    Her: “Well, honey, we just bought this bed, and we spent a lot of money on it. I’ve never had a bed that was so comfortable. So, yes, I suppose I would keep the bed.”

    The husband, try as he might, can no longer hide his growing agitation.

    Him: “Okay, so if you remarried, and you stayed in this house, and you kept sleeping in our bed, would he use MY DAMN GOLF CLUBS?”

    Her: “Oh honey, goodness gracious no. He’s left handed.”

  14. Avatar Tim says:

    Why did police take a 3 year-old into custody?

    He was resisting a rest.

  15. Reminded me of a very happy time, I also watched Happy Feet with some of my grands and great grands. It is a very delightful movie!

  16. Two cannibals are eating a clown, one says, “Does this taste funny to you?”

  17. A mystic dwarf escapes from a jail. The police were on the lookout for a small medium at large.

  18. If life gives you melons, you’re probably dyslexic.

  19. Avatar Eleanor says:

    I bought my friend an elephant for her room.
    She said :”Thanks”.
    I said : “Don’t mention it.”

  20. Avatar Eleanor says:

    So what if I don’t know what Armageddon means? It’s not the end of the world!

  21. Avatar Liz says:

    Two little brothers arguing:

    first little brother: “You, you NAMES!!!”
    second little brother with tears crying: “Mommy, Mommy, he called me “NAMES”!!!!

    (true little nephew story)

  22. Barbara Rice Barbara Rice says:

    A Buddhist walks up to a hot dog vendor and says, “Make me one with everything.”
    The vendor gives him the hot dog and the Buddhist says, “Hey, where’s my change?” And the vendor says…
    “Change comes from within.”

  23. Steve Towers Steve Towers says:

    Some conservatives insist that violent video games and movies are the root cause of school violence, but I think their logic is all wrong. I watch tons of online porn, and I never go out and get laid.

  24. Steve Towers Steve Towers says:

    “The Frog Joke” is my all-time favorite shaggy-dog story, and Norm McDonald draws it out gloriously.


    • Avatar Candace says:

      Love that! Also, Eddie Izzard’s “Cake or Death”


      • Avatar Candace says:

        Whoops! Sorry guys! Adult language disclaimer for Eddie Izzard video! I forgot about that before I posted. My bad.

    • Dang. Netflix blocked it. 🙁

    • Steve, Netflix removed your version, but here’s the text:

      A frog walks into a bank to get a loan…

      He goes up to the lady behind the counter, and noticing her name tag, the frog says, “Hi, Mrs. Whack. I’d like to take out a loan.”

      She says “Well I don’t know. We don’t normally give out loans to frogs.”

      The frog says “Well, I want a loan.”

      She says “alright, well what’s your first name?”


      Laughing, the woman says “No way. You’re not Kermit the Frog.”

      “No, I’m not. But I’m named after him,” says the frog.

      “And your last name?”


      “What, like Mick Jagger?”

      “Yes,” says the frog. “He’s my father actually.”

      “Alright, well do you have any collateral?”

      The frog says “No. All I have is this.”

      The frog hands her a tiny little ceramic pink elephant.

      She says “What on earth am I supposed to do with this?” Concerned, she goes back to check with the manager.

      The manager says “What is it, Patty? Can’t you see I’m busy?”

      She tells him “Listen. A frog is out there right now. His name is Kermit and he claims that his father is Mick Jagger. He asked to take out a loan, and when I asked him for some collateral, he handed me this little elephant thing.”

      “Give me that,” says the manager.

      He puts on his glasses and looks at it closely. “What… I, uh… hmm…”

      “I know what this is! This is a knick knack, Patty Whack! Give the frog a loan! His old man’s a Rolling Stone!”

  25. Avatar Candace says:

    badda bing badda boom

  26. Avatar Hollis Pickett says:

    Seriously…..you are so right………….just kidding!

  27. Avatar Joanne Lobeski Snyder says:

    A string walks into a bar with a few friends and orders a beer. The bartender says, “I’m sorry, but we don’t serve strings here.”

    The string goes back to his table. He ties himself in a loop and messes up the top of his hair. He walks back up to the bar and orders a beer.

    The bartender squints at him and says, “Hey, aren’t you a string?”

    The string says, “Nope, I’m a frayed knot.”

  28. Avatar Joanne Lobeski Snyder says:

    OH my gosh! Thank you for the laughs.

  29. Two hunters are out in the woods when one of them collapses. He doesn’t seem to be breathing and his eyes are glazed. The other man pulls out his cell phone and calls emergency services. He gasps to the operator, “My friend is dead! What can I do?” The operator in a calm, soothing voice replies, “Take it easy. I can help. First, let’s make sure he’s dead.” There is a silence, then a shot is heard.

    Back on the phone, the hunter says, “OK, now what?”

  30. A woman gets on a bus with her baby. The bus driver says: “That’s the ugliest baby that I’ve ever seen.” The woman goes to the rear of the bus and sits down, fuming. She says to a man next to her, “That driver just insulted me!” The man says, “You go right up there and tell him off! Go ahead, I’ll hold your monkey for you.”

  31. Knock knock.

    Who’s there?

    A little old lady.

    A little old lady who?

    All this time, I had no idea you could yodel.

  32. What’s the difference between a hippo and a zippo?
    One is really heavy and the other is a little lighter.

  33. What do you do with chemists when they die?


    Time flies like an arrow…
    Fruit flies like a banana!


    My dad unfortunately passed away when we couldn’t remember his blood type…
    His last words to us were, “Be positive!”

  34. Avatar George says:

    The whole chicken huh!? So now we know why that chicken crossed the road.

  35. Avatar Totally serious says:

    A man walks into a bar.
    He says, “Hey, who put that bar there?”

    A man goes to a psychiatrist wearing nothing but Saran Wrap.
    The psychiatrists says, “I can clearly see you’re nuts!”

    • Mistress of the Mix Mistress of the Mix says:

      Hey, that’s my husband’s ONLY joke! (The psychiatrist one.) Here’s one that always takes a moment for people to get:

      A toothless termite walks into a bar, and says, “Hey, where’s the bar tender?”

  36. Avatar Joanne Lobeski Snyder says:

    What do you get when you cross a Collie with a cantaloupe?
    A melancholy baby.

    What do you get with you cross the Atlantic with the Titanic?
    About half way.

  37. Adrienne Jacoby Adrienne Jacoby says:

    I missed this whole diatribe . . . . must have been while I was out of communication with anewscafe (before Joe worked his magic).
    I, personally LOVE shaggy dog stories that revolve around songs (go figure). Yes, the Kermit one is going in my collection.
    One day Dale Evens gave Roy Rogers a brand new pair of hand tooled, hand rubbed hand stitched cowboy boots for his birthday.Roy LOVED those boots. He put them on and wore them around the ranch that day. When he came in for lunch, as is the custom, he took off his boots and left them by the back door. During lunch, they looked up to see a big ol’ mountain lion just chewing the heck out of Roy’s boots.
    So, Roy looks at Dale and said, “Day-ule, this afternoon Ah’m goona get me a bobcat!”
    So after lunch Roy saddled up Trigger he rode up the driveway and out amonst the booo-shes and trees and shurrrbs and disappeared off into the hills. .
    Well, Dale, she watched all afternoon and finally,’long ’bout sundown she sees a lone rider coming in from the hills. Sure ’nuff. . . there’s a big ol’ carcass slung right across the saddlehorn. So Dale, she runs out the front door, down across the porch, out through the trees and shrubs and right up to Roy and says,
    “Pardon me Roy, is that the cat that chewed your new shoes!” . . . . okay, it helps if you can sing it to the tune of Chattanooga Choo Choo.