A Fair-weather Flower

Q: What kind of flowers are great friends?
A: Rose buds!

Explanation: Roses are one of the best known flowers.  As a rose grows, in the spring you will notice buds.  Rose buds are little bumps on the stem of a rose from which the flowers will appear.  Yes, roses are beautiful! (Be careful of the thorns, though.)

Friends are, well, you know what friends are.  There are many synonyms for the word friend.  One of those synonyms is bud, short for buddy.  Your bud is your pal, is your friend, is your bestie, is your bff.  You get the idea.

This joke is funny because it plays with the word bud: a baby flower and a friend.

If you would like to see a rose bloom from a bud to a flower, watch this:

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Maybe a Snack Later On

Q: Why did the two 4s decide to skip dinner?
A: Because they already 8.

Explanation: Told to me by a 6th grader, this one made me laugh!  It is rather absurd and it really makes no sense…so let me try to explain it.

If someone invites you to eat, you might say, “No, thank you,” if you have just eaten.  Or you might say, “I’ll go with you, but I am not hungry.  I already ate.”  I already ate sounds just like I already eight.

Of course if there are two 4s together, you can add them up and they total eight (4 + 4 = 8).

This joke is funny because it plays with the words ate and eight, which sound the same…and because it really doesn’t make sense.

Here are some folks who did not skip dinner.  They just had to use their imaginations!  And some of them are probably eight (years old).

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Bounce Back

Q: What’s the best season for jumping on a trampoline?
A: Spring time!

Explanation: The northern hemisphere is about a third of the way through the season of spring.  Of course summer will come after spring, and then fall and winter.  Spring is a beautiful time of year as the trees bud and bloom, the flowers are reborn, and the days get longer. (Actually, days do not really get longer than 24 hours, but the amount of sunlight during the day increases.)

A trampoline is a piece of equipment that has a strong fabric attached to a frame with springs; the springs make you bounce up and down.  Springs are coils of wire that can get longer when stretched, and then pull back into its original form.  You might find a spring used to close a screen door, to make the tip of a pen come out or go in, or to make a mattress more  comfortable.

This joke is funny because it plays with the word spring: A season of the year and a coiled piece of metal.  Springtime is different from spring time, too.  If you play on a trampoline, you will enjoy your time bouncing because of the springs.

Here are some amazing trampoline athletes (thanks to the springs):

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Live and Let Live

Q: Why are cats good at video games?
A: Because they have nine lives!

Explanation: Many video games let you have another chance to keep going if you make a really bad mistake, maybe even getting your character killed.  (Other games do not give you another life in the same game, and you have to start over.)  I am reminded of the classic video game Pac-Man where you would get three lives.  It also reminds me of the pre-video game era when people played pinball, and you had to score the maximum number of points with a limited number of balls.

Cats are known as curious explorers who get themselves into difficult situations.  Because of their instincts, including the ability to land on their feet (usually), cats survive (usually).  Therefore, in English speaking countries cats are said to have nine lives.  (Here is an interesting article about the nine lives of cats.)

This joke is funny because it combines the the lives you get while playing video games with the saying, “cats have nine lives.”

Here is a cat who survived-

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Let the Light In

Q: Did you hear about the cross-eyed teacher?
A: He couldn’t control his pupils!

Explanation: Someone whose eyes do not line up with each other, whose eyes do not look in the same direction, suffers from a medical condition called strabismus.  In that situation, people cannot make their eyes look in the same direction.  In non-medical terms, people whose eyes look in different directions may be called cross-eyed.  The term cross-eyed can be used disrespectfully or can be used as a description.  If you look down your nose, you are crossing your eyes.  In your eyes, pupils are the center part of the eye, the black circle in the middle of the eyes that lets the light in.

Pupil is also another word for student.  You might say, “After the pupils sat down at their desks, the teacher began the class.”  Pupils is not a common term in the United States; I do not know if other English speaking countries us it.

This joke is funny because the word pupil has more than one meaning: the center part of the eye, and a student in a class.

There is a band from the Philippines called Pupil and they have a song titled 20/20-

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Copy That

Q: What is the difference between a cat that got xeroxed and a cat that imitates its owner?
A: One is a cat copy and the other is a copycat!

Explanation: Sometimes in English, brand names become verbs or nouns.  For most people, all facial tissue is Kleenex, all internet searches are Googling, and all bandages are Band-Aids.  (The term for this is anthimeria.)  So, when you xerox something, you make a copy, a photocopy, because Xerox is a brand name of copiers.

A copycat is a person who copies what you do. The word is used most frequently by children.  You may also hear the phrase copycat crime for a criminal who imitates another criminal.

This joke is funny because it plays with the words copy and cat.  I love cats but I don’t think I want a copy of one.  It would be fun, though, if a cat copied what I did!

Here are some cats acting like humans-

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Do you see what I see?

Q: Why did the computer get new glasses?
A: To improve his web sight!

Explanation: Every few years, it seems, I need to get new reading glasses that are just a bit stronger. The 20-20 vision of my youth has become more like the impressionist works of Monet.  When people want to improver their vision, their eyesight, they often get new glasses.

Computers, of course, do not use glasses.  They do, however show us websites through the internet.

This joke is funny because website (lowercase, one word) sounds the same as web sight.  I wonder if Spiderman has good web sight?

Watch and listen here to find out how lenses for glasses are made—

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My Main Squeeze

Q: How did the orange get into the crowded restaurant?
A: He squeezed his way in!

Explanation: As COVID cases wane, more and more people are heading out to restaurants.  In the case of this joke, even the orange goes into a restaurant.

If a restaurant is crowded, that means that there are many, many people and, most likely, no empty tables.  To fit into a crowded space you may need to squeeze yourself into that space.  Think of trying to squeeze one more person into a full elevator, or trying to squeeze a pillow into a full suitcase.  Yes, to squeeze into is an idiom meaning that you add more to a crowded space.  When planning, you can squeeze another appointment into a crowded calendar.

Squeezing something also means that you press it together, most often with your fingers or your hand.  In order to make orange juice, you have to squeeze the orange until the juice comes out.

This joke is funny because it plays with the meanings of squeeze: adding something to a crowded space, or pressing something together.  I hope that orange didn’t get too squeezed in that restaurant or all its juice would come out! By the way, being someone’s main squeeze means being their boyfriend or girlfriend.

Being pushy can be annoying to other people.  Speaking of annoying, here is an annoying orange–

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Not This Week Either

Explanation: While I truly believe that learning can always continue, I also believe that reflection is vital in the learning process.  This week I am reflecting on ideas of war and peace, and praying for an end to all aggression, especially in Ukraine.  And Ukraine is not the only place in the world experiencing war, violence, and attacks this week.

People throughout the world are showing their support for the people of Ukraine, including many in Russia.  Let us support efforts towards peace, and work for peace in our homes, cities, countries, and the world.

It didn’t seem like a good week to Explain the Joke.

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Roger Willco

Q: Can listening to the radio be an addiction?
A: Depends on the frequency!

Explanation: Today is World Radio Day, so a radio joke seemed appropriate!

An addiction is an activity that you do over and over because something about it feels good to your brain.  Most addictions are bad for your health, such as an addiction to smoking, or alcoholism.  When you do something many times you do it frequently, often.

When you listen to the radio, you tune into a certain frequency, that is, a specific wavelength so you can hear the station.  The radio frequency spectrum is very big and is distributed to a lot of different users including, TV, radio, aircraft, and amateurs.

This joke is funny because it plays with the word frequency, meaning how often you do something, or the wavelength of your radio station.  By the way, AM and FM radio are only part of the spectrum but they are very important.  “Radio continues one of the most trusted and accessible media in the world, according to different international reports,” UNESCO.

Watch here to learn more about the invention of radio-

And check out this map of world radio stations: https://worldradiomap.com/ 

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