Saturday, February 5, 2005

Karen's Joke File #2: The Brick (The Rooster Was Better)

I forgot to mention a couple of things last night.  One is that I've used that first joke as a metaphor for the way the airlines gradually cut travel agency commissions to nothing, without regard to whether we could still fly without them. I've also told it to a critical thinking instructor as an example of a fallacy.

The other thing I forgot to mention is that some of these jokes, though not the airplane one, came from a friend of my dad's many years ago.  I remember him standing at the Speakman camp, telling us joke after joke as Steve and I tried to guess where the joke was going.  At one point, Steve started to tell Dad's friend about the rooster that lived across the street from us in Manlius. (The farmer who had sold most of his land to the developer that built our house still lived across the street with his chickens).  Steve mentioned that sometimes the rooster would wake him up, or even keep him up at night. 

We waited for the punchline. None was forthcoming.

"And?" we finally prompted.

"Nothing.  Just that the rooster keeps waking me up."

That's when we realized that Steve hadn't been telling a joke, and Steve realized that we thought he had been.  In the face of any unsuccessful or painful jokes for the rest of that summer and several summers to come, my brother would say "The rooster was better."

Ready? Here comes the next joke.  It's one of the ones that my dad's friend told, almost 40 years ago. Perhaps you'll think that the rooster was better than this one, too.

The wall
Joke #2.  The Brick

A man decided to build a small brick wall behind his little house in the city.  He planned and measured, graded and plumbed, and eventually started building. Toward the end of the project, he decided that he wanted one more row on top of his wall, bringing it from four feet, two inches tall to five feet tall.  For that he would need exactly 15 more bricks.

He went down to the building supply place, but the distributor had changed the packaging since he'd bought the rest of his bricks.  Now they only came in packs of four.

"But I only need 15 bricks, not 16,"  he explained to the clerk, and then to the store manager. "Why should I pay for a brick I don't need?"

"I'm sorry, sir, but we're not allowed to break up the packaging."

"But you're the manager."

"Yes, but I have to answer to Corporate, and we don't have the facilities to sell single bricks."

not just another brick in the wallSo the man lost his argument, and with much grumbling brought home the 16 bricks.  He measured and mixed the mortar, and started laying the bricks. Sure enough, when he was all done, he was standing in front of his finished wall with a single leftover brick in his hand.  He was so annoyed that he threw the brick into the air with all his might.

Tomorrow: The Prison Jokes.  And later tonight, I will have a new JW installment as usual.  And no, the serial doesn't end this week, either.



cneinhorn said...

huh?  did it land on his head?  or into the wall and break it?  hmmm?  LOL...maybe the joke is there is no joke!


ryanagi said...

Hmm. Could be the cold medicine...but I don't get it. LOL