5 Jokes To Make Your Kids Go NOOOOOO! #TBT

Noooooo!!Ideally, a good parental joke should be so short, you can get most of it out before the kids have time to recognize it and shout you down or stick their fingers in their ears and go la la la la la.

Failing that, it should have such a recognizable lead-in that the remainder of the joke plays — or, better yet, attempts to play — itself out in their heads.

You know your joke has rooted itself in their DNA when they ask you to coach them in the joke, or call you and ask you to tell the joke to someone with them, or you hear them telling the joke to someone else.

Here are my top five:

  1. There were two peanuts walking down the road and one was assaulted. (a salted)
  2. A toothless termite walked into a saloon and asked, “Where’s the bar tender?” (bartender)
  3. A three-legged dog walked into a bar and said, “I’m a-lookin’ fer the man who shot my paw.”
  4. How many legs would a dog have if you called his tail a leg? Four: calling his tail a leg doesn’t make it one. (This one is also good for making a point about rationalization.)
  5. As I was going to St. Ives, I met a man with seven wives. Each wife had seven sacks. Each sack had seven cats. Each cat had seven kits. Kits, cats, sacks, and wives, how many were going to St. Ives? One. As I was going to St. Ives….

#4, of course, is successful if the child chimes in with you on the second half of the set-up. Then you don’t even have to bother telling the rest.

#5 has taken root when you get stopped as soon as you say, “As I was going to St. Ives,” then, after the briefest pause, a child sighs and says, “Well, go on and finish it,” and you can tell they’re trying to memorize it without your catching on.

Being a parental unit can be so rewarding, and in so many incorrect ways.

A WRITING PROMPT FOR YOU: An adult remembers a joke specific to an adult from their childhood.



I was born in Louisville, Kentucky, but now live in the woods in southern Indiana. Though I only write fiction, I love to read non-fiction. The more I learn about this world, the more fantastic I see it is.

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One thought on “5 Jokes To Make Your Kids Go NOOOOOO! #TBT

  1. Dan

    June 4, 2015 at 8:13am

    We used to play the Wee Sing tapes in the car for our daughter and “As I was going to St Ives, was on a favorite tape. As soon as I read “As I was” I started hearing it in my head. Thanks for the memory job.

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  2. Jane

    June 4, 2015 at 9:20am

    #3 made me laugh aloud.

    This post could only have been written by a real parent.
    And a good one.

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  3. Pat Garcia

    June 4, 2015 at 11:19am

    Hi Marian,
    I enjoyed your jokes. I laughed hardest on the one with the dog with three legs walking in and saying I’m looking for the man who shot my paw. That was a good one and I’m remembering it to tell at a fun occasion.

    Patricia at Everything Must Change

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  4. Pierre Laberge

    June 5, 2015 at 12:41am

    It is said that Lincoln, invented #4 at a lawyer’s convention. But he used a cow in his story.

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  5. Val Rainey

    August 24, 2015 at 7:13pm

    Really cute little jokes.
    I found you through Pat Garcia’s twitter page.

    Permalink  ⋅ Reply
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