Joan, my mother-in-law pulled a fast one on me this week. The best part of the joke was how long it took me to get it.
When Joan called she sounded very excited. She said that she was eating breakfast – toast with peanut butter and blackberry jam. She had just swallowed her last bite when she saw that she was on the news! Imagine that – she was on the news! The newscaster was talking and the ticker at the bottom of the screen said that all the blackberries went down. She then started to laugh.
I was quiet for a few moments and said “I don’t get it.”
She said “Didn’t you hear about the blackberries? They all went down. I had just swallowed my last bite of blackberry jam – they all went down!” She started laughing again.
I hesitated again as my mind was racing about what could have killed all the blackberries across the planet, the implications of the ecological collapse, and what might happen next. I said “They did? No I didn’t know that.”
“Really?” Joan asked “You don’t have a Blackberry?”
That was when I got it. We both laughed when we realized one of the funniest parts of the joke was how slow I was on the uptake. This is not unlike the following fractured cliché.
Fractured Cliché: Not the brightest tool in the shed
Correct Cliché: Not the sharpest tool in the shed
Thanks for a great laugh, Joanie!
May the farce be with you.