Don't laugh at the Germans: for you, Tommy, ze joke iss over!!

Reply Mon 6 Oct, 2008 03:43 am
Telegraph uses Germany's fiscal woes as an excuse to run a separate front page story pandering cheaply to readers' prejudices about the country. Frankfurt, it reveals, is to get a museum dedicated to the national sense of humour, a phenomenon the paper claims has "so far remained largely unknown to the international public":


Online report at the Telegraph

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Walter Hinteler
Reply Mon 6 Oct, 2008 03:43 am
@Walter Hinteler,

An old but highly informative Guardian article by the comedian Stewart Lee, who argues that the Germans do have a sense of humour - it's just different to the English:
Lost in translation
Our attitude to the Germans and their supposed lack of a sense of humour is best understood through the example of the joke known to comedy professionals such as myself as The German Child. It goes like this. An English couple have a child. After the birth, medical tests reveal that the child is normal, apart from the fact that it is German. This, however, should not be a problem. There is nothing to worry about. As the child grows older, it dresses in lederhosen and has a pudding bowl haircut, but all its basic functions develop normally. It can walk, eat, sleep, read and so on, but for some reason the German child never speaks. The concerned parents take it to the doctor, who reassures them that as the German child is perfectly developed in all other areas, there is nothing to worry about and that he is sure the speech faculty will eventually blossom. Years pass. The German child enters its teens, and still it is not speaking, though in all other respects it is fully functional. The German child's mother is especially distressed by this, but attempts to conceal her sadness. One day she makes the German child, who is now 17 years old and still silent, a bowl of tomato soup, and takes it through to him in the parlour where he is listening to a wind-up gramophone record player. Soon, the German child appears in the kitchen and suddenly declares, "Mother. This soup is a little tepid." The German child's mother is astonished. "All these years," she exclaims, "we assumed you could not speak. And yet all along it appears you could. Why? Why did you never say anything before?" "Because, mother," answers the German child, "up until now, everything has been satisfactory."

The implication of this fabulous joke is that the Germans are ruthlessly rational, and this assumption leaves us little room to imagine them finding time to be playful. But be assured, the German sense of humour not only exists, it actually flourishes, albeit in a form we are ill-equipped to recognise.

Walter Hinteler
Reply Mon 6 Oct, 2008 03:43 am
@Walter Hinteler,

The museum

http://i38.tinypic.com/34t8qjc.jpg http://i35.tinypic.com/vwu6oi.jpg

Caricatura Museum homepage - no humour: it's in German only and a department of the Frankfurt Historical Museum.

Photos courtesy of the caricatura muscum association

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Reply Mon 6 Oct, 2008 04:17 am
Who said the Germans have no sense of humour?

Knock, knock.
Who's there?
The police. I'm afraid there's been an accident. Your husband is in

A man walks into a bar.
He is an alcoholic whose drink problem is destroying his family.

Did you hear about the blonde who jumped out off a bridge?
She was clinically depressed because of her terribly
low self-esteem.

What do you call a cat with no tail?
A manx cat.

Why do undertakers wear ties?
Because their profession is very serious, and it is important that their
appearance has a degree of gravitas.

How many electricians does it take to change a light bulb?

Why do women fake orgasms?
Because they want to give men the impression that they have climaxed.

Why are there no aspirin in the jungle?
Because it would not be financially viable to attempt to sell
pharmaceuticals in the largely unpopulated rainforest.

Doctor, I've broken my leg.
I'm afraid it is a very bad break. You will never walk again.

There's an Englishman, an Irishman and a Scotsman and they are all
trapped in a jail cell.
Eventually they all starved to death.

Did you hear about the Irishman found under a shop?
He was killed and buried there. It was gang-related.

What's the difference between a rottwieller and a poodle?
There are many differences. They are two totally different breeds of

What do you get if you cross a horse and a donkey?
A mule.
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Reply Mon 6 Oct, 2008 05:41 am
@Walter Hinteler,
Isnt German Humor , the same as 'Irish Cuisine" or "Somalian democracy"?
Reply Mon 6 Oct, 2008 05:44 am
Good for you, Walter. It appears a bit big of a building for housing German humor, but I suppose that will just give it plenty of room to move about.

I too had often wondered about German humor. Hingehead has made me aware that it DOES exist in a larger quatity than imagined.

Thank you for allowing me to inflict third degree burns to my legs and chest from spewing hot coffee.

You are both delightful.
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Walter Hinteler
Reply Mon 6 Oct, 2008 06:00 am
farmerman wrote:

Isnt German Humor , the same as 'Irish Cuisine" or "Somalian democracy"?
Yes, until we exported it together with the local ne'er-do-wells to the New World.
But before, we brainwashed those poor persons: they thought afterwards, they were from the Netherlands and called themselves Pennsylvanian Dutch ...
Reply Mon 6 Oct, 2008 06:09 am
@Walter Hinteler,
See, now thats low, you are making fun of speech impediments that are congenital defects among the PA "Deitsch".
Thats just wrong Walter, Im surprised at you.
Walter Hinteler
Reply Mon 6 Oct, 2008 06:13 am
Well, I've donated the little humour I'd got to the museum already, farmerman (they needed it urgently). So I'm actually even lower than before (we had Irish Stew for lunch, btw).
Reply Mon 6 Oct, 2008 08:28 am
@Walter Hinteler,
Tough to chew, was it?
0 Replies
Reply Mon 6 Oct, 2008 10:28 pm
@Walter Hinteler,
I agree. The Germans have a terrific sense of humor. When I was in Germany, I showed some people a picture allegedly showing Hitler's grave outside of his bunker and they all laughed.
Mr Stillwater
Reply Tue 7 Oct, 2008 12:12 am
and they all laughed.

With relief. With relief. Don't want any ugly rumours that the bastard's been snap-frozen for a later generation.

German humour exists - I have two examples from my cousin when I visited the nation (sign at Frankfurt Airport "Genocide-free for over 50 years!"):

First one requires the knowledge that a traffic jam is also called a 'snake' (schlange in German);
What's the difference between a Traffik-Schlange and a real one?
The arsehole is found at the end of the real snake!

The German Republic was interested in the progress of mental health reforms in the states. Saxony budgeted for 500 new hospital beds, Berlin opened a brand new hospital and Bavaria had added a 17 foot high fence around itself.
(the joke being that most everyone else considers them somewhat mad)
Walter Hinteler
Reply Tue 7 Oct, 2008 12:25 am
@Mr Stillwater,
Yes, still waters run deep.
0 Replies
Reply Tue 7 Oct, 2008 12:36 am
@Walter Hinteler,
Oh, you really shouldn't eat Irish stew, Walter Hinteler. Don't you know, it causes men to lose hair and become bald!
Reply Tue 7 Oct, 2008 04:24 am
Synron is hinting about his personal heritage.
Walter Hinteler
Reply Tue 7 Oct, 2008 04:57 am
Might be. But it's exactly why and how all males in our family lost their hair. Since generations ...
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Reply Tue 7 Oct, 2008 05:16 am

Germany's famous comedian, Willy Millowitsch. He appeared in Chevy Chase's "European Vacation" as Fritz.
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