Knock-knock jokes hold a special fascination for preschoolers, probably because it’s their first try at the kind of humor that will evolve, inevitably, into middle-school fart jokes. It’s not as easy as it looks, though. Practice makes perfect in knock-knock land.
The basics: Tim’s come to see me with a mild case of poison oak. His mom encourages Tim to tell me his new joke. I’m game. I like knock-knock jokes, especially as told by four year-olds.
Tim (eyes wide, big grin): “Knock-knock.”
Me: “Who’s there?”
Tim (leans forward, hand cupped to mouth, whispers): “You’re supposed to say banana.”
Me: “Okay, let’s try it again.”
Tim (points at me): “Orange you banana, banana? That’s what!”
A brief pause, while the mangled punch line sinks in, then the three of us dissolve in a fit of giggles.
Tim, finally: “That’s a good one, isn’t it?”
It’s a great one.