(jokes crossing languages)
Last Sunday night I was watching TV with my host family and we were watching a show about people of 2009. There was a guest and he told a few jokes. I was actually able to understand and laugh at some of them (a little delayed maybe but still).
“Oma, warum strickst du so schnell?“
“Ich will fertig vor das Wolle Kugel ist alle!”
“Grandma, why are you knitting so fast?”
“I want to finish before the ball of wool runs out!”
I made a discovery last month; Germans don’t have knock-knock jokes. My friend Clara was over for a sleepover and she asked me about jokes in Canada, so I told her one that I knew in English, and she told me some in German. Unfortunately, though, some of the humour is lost when one has to explain a joke. Then I asked her about knock-knock jokes, and if they have them in German. As they don’t I tried explaining them to her and tried out the well known “Boo who? Don’t cry it’s only a joke” on her. She clearly didn’t see what was funny about it so I tried another one on her and it went something like this:
Kammy: Knock knock.
Clara: Ummm, who’s there?
Clara: *Confused look* Boo who?
Kammy:*Mirrors confused look*
Then it dawned on me that I had told her directly to say, “Boo who?” in the previous joke and she thought that was the line for every joke. No wonder she didn’t get it. I explained through laughter the mistake and we both laughed until we cried at our failing attempts of trying to make each other understand the other’s language’s jokes.