Missing You

Q: Why did the bat miss the school bus?
A: He hung around too long!

Explanation: First of all, let’s be clear: Bats don’t go to school.  Although, bats might make their home in the attic of a school or any building if there is a way to get inside.

In this joke, when you miss the school bus, it means that you arrived too late to take the bus.  There are other meanings of miss the bus: If you really liked taking the bus and you no longer take it, you might miss the bus, just like you might miss someone who is not with you; if you were trying to hit the bus with a snowball (don’t do this!), you could miss the bus when you throw the snowball and the snowball does not hit the bus.

To hang around means that you spend time with people, maybe talking, maybe not doing much of anything.  If you hang around too long, that means that you are spending too much time at a place and you will be late for whatever comes next.  Bats, of course, hang upside down when they sleep.  That is, they grab a branch from a tree, or something else, with their feet, and they hang with their heads toward the ground (the opposite of standing on your feet).

This joke is funny because it plays with the words hang (hung in the past), like a bat sleeping, and hang around, like spending time not doing much of anything.

Here is a short video about bats landing upside down:

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Muckety Muck

Q: What did the dirt say to the rain?
A: If you keep this up, my name is going to be mud!

Explanation: Today is the equinox: The autumnal equinox in the southern hemisphere, and the vernal equinox in the northern hemisphere.  The equinox marks a change in the seasons when the sun’s direct rays cross the equator.

Now, back to the joke!  Dirt is another name for soil.  Dirt can be dry and dusty (if it has not received any water), moist (if it has received some water), or muddy (if it has received a lot of water).  This can happen in houseplants or outside.  If you don’t water your houseplants, the soil will dry out and the plant will die; if you water them too much, the soil will become muddy and the plant will die.  Mud is dirt mixed with water.

My name is mud is an idiom that means you have a bad reputation.  If your name is mud, your reputation is bad, and you are known for something negative.  The original saying comes from the name of Dr. Samuel Mudd; he was the doctor who treated John Wilkes Booth after Booth killed Abraham Lincoln.

This joke is funny because dirt is actually called mud when it gets wet, so it’s name will be mud, not dirt.

Names are important.  Here are some thoughts about remembering people’s names-

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That’s Rich!

Q: Why did the farmer bury all his money?
A: To make the soil rich!

Explanation: In the northern hemisphere, spring is right around the corner, and that means planting season.  Farmers want to have really good soil (dirt) to plant their seeds.  The seeds will sprout and grow in good, rich soil much better than in poor soil, soil that lacks the necessary nutrients to feed the seeds/plants.  Rich soil means good dirt for the growing of plants and trees.

When people have a lot of money, we say that they are rich.  Now, there are a lot of ways that people can be rich: rich in happiness, rich in love, rich in friendships…  However, the main meaning of rich is rich with money.

This joke is funny because it plays with the ideas of rich (lots of money), and rich soil.  By the way, burying your money in the dirt will not make your soil rich; it will just destroy your money.  If you have extra money, there are many wonderful charities that work to make the world a better place; they would be happy to partner with you to make the world a bit better.

If you have a space for gardening, here are a few tips to make your soil great, and it’s not by burying money.

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In Like a Lion

Q: Why did the lion spit out the clown after trying to eat him?
A: It tasted funny!

Explanation: OK, another joke from a circus.

Did you ever taste something that wasn’t quite right?  Maybe it tasted bad because it turned sour, like spoiled milk, or rotten like a bad apple.  If you taste something that has a bad taste, we say that it tasted funny.  To taste funny means that it tastes bad, and you shouldn’t eat it.  Most people will spit out bad food; hopefully they do it carefully into a napkin, or perhaps into the trash.

Clowns are characters that are supposed to be funny and make us laugh, although many people are scared of clowns.  At a circus, clowns come in to make people laugh, often between other performances that need time to set up or take down.

This joke is funny because it plays with the idea of funny clowns tasting funny.  A person who tells jokes cannot taste funny. And of course it is not funny at all if you are the clown getting eaten by a lion.

Speaking of lions, have you heard the phrase “in like a lion and out like a lamb?”   Here is a bit of March weather history for you…

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Q: Did you hear about the fire at the circus?
A: Yeah–It was intense!!

Explanation: I love the circus! Two of my favorite circus’ are La Tarumba in Lima, Peru, and Circus Juventus in St. Paul, MN.  Traditionally, a circus would move from place to place, carrying everything with it, including a tent where they would perform.

Intense means extreme or very very strong.  You can have intense feelings for something (or someone), like when you really, really like a certain brand of chocolate.  A situation can be intense, like when people are arguing loudly.  A fire can be intense if it is really big and produces a lot of heat.

This joke is funny because “intense” sounds exactly like “in tents.”  In the joke, the fire happened in circus tents and it was intense.

Here is Cirque du Soleil taking down and setting up their circus tent.  It’s pretty intense!

Thank you J. L. for the joke!

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The Graveyard’s Edge

Q: Why is there a fence around the cemetery?
A: Because people are dying to get in!

Explanation: A cemetery is a graveyard, a place where dead people are buried.  If you are looking for some famous cemeteries, you might check out this link from Fordor’s.  Most cemeteries that I know of have a fence going around the outside of the cemetery.  I am not sure why, exactly, but perhaps the fence shows where the boundaries of the graveyard are.

“Dying to do something” is an idiom that means that you really want to do something.  If I say that I am dying to eat churros in Madrid, it means that I really want to try them when I travel to Madrid.

This joke is funny because it plays with the meaning of “dying to:”  the literal meaning that people are actually losing their lives (we all will die!) and will go to the graveyard, and the figurative meaning that people are dying to get into the cemetery (they really want to get in).  Most people do not want to get into a cemetery; most people do not want to die.

Suicide, though, is not funny.  If you are considering suicide, please, please, please reach out to those who are near you and ask for help.  There are people who love you, even in the darkest moments.  For right now, read this amazing, saving poem.

If you are looking for an odd and wonderful book to read, I would highly recommend The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman.  It takes a while to get into the book, but it is worth the effort.  Here is chapter 1:

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It’s a Virtue

Q: When do doctors get mad?
A: When they lose their patients! (patience)

Explanation: Patients are the people who go to see a doctor.  When you go to the doctor, you are a patient (noun).

Patience (notice the spelling difference) is the ability to wait without getting upset, the ability to explain something without getting upset, the ability to endure a difficult situation calmly.  Getting mad quickly is the opposite of patience.  Road rage is the opposite of patience.  You probably know people who are the opposite of patient (adjective).

This joke is funny because both words sound the same.  A doctor who has patients who decide to not see him or her, might lose his or her patience, that is, get upset when fewer people make appointments.

I found this joke after listening to the previous joke’s song, Patience by Guns ‘n Roses.  Here is another way to think of patience:

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Beacon of Light

Q: How many musicians does it take to change a lightbulb?
A: A-one, a-two, a-one, two, three, four!

Explanation: There are many, many jokes that start ask, “How many ________ does it take to change a lightbulb?  You can do a search of “lightbulb jokes” and see more.  Most lightbulb jokes make fun of someone.  By the way, when I search, I see both light bulb (two words) and lightbulb (one compound word).  When I looked for which is correct, I found this.

This joke is funny because, well, lightbulb jokes are funny.  This one in particular is funny because many musicians start off their songs with the 1, 2, 3, 4 count.

Here is a song that starts with a 1, 2, 3, 4 count to begin.  If you are patient, you will hear it–

Q.E.P.D./R.I.P. Chris

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Q: What does a computer do when it is tired?
A: It crashes!

Explanation: Did your computer ever stop working (freeze) or turn itself off when you wanted to use it?  If it did, you can say your computer crashed.  Computer crashes are frustrating because you cannot get your work done, and sometimes you lose the work you finished most recently, unless you saved it.  Thankfully, they do not happen too often.

The word crash has other meanings.  If someone is tired, a person might say, “I’m going to go crash.”  This means that the person will go to bed and sleep.  Or you could say, “I crashed lat night at 8:30 because I was so tired.”

This joke is funny because it plays with two meanings of the word crash: A computer not working, and someone going to bed.

Here are two songs about another meaning of the word crash:

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It’s About Time

Q: Where can you go to practice math on New Year’s Eve?
A: Times Square!

Explanation: Happy New Year!  It’s 2023 which means that Explain the Joke is celebrating 10 years of explaining jokes in English.

To get better at math, people often people often practice addition (+) or subtraction (-) problems; then they work on multiplication (x) and division (÷), and all the way through calculus and beyond.  Practicing multiplication is also known as practicing your times tables.  You can say what is seven times nine (7 x 9), or you can can say what is seven multiplied by nine.  They mean the same thing, times or multiplied by.

Times Square is an area in New York City.  One of the things Times Square is known for is its party on New Year’s Eve.  During that party, many people gather in Times Square and watch on TV to see the ball drop; when the ball gets to the bottom, the new year starts.  (By the way, to drop the ball is an idiom that means to make a mistake.)

This joke is funny because it plays with the ideas of times (multiplication) and Times Square.

If you would like to see the ball drop to mark the beginning of 2023, take a look here:

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