Tag Archives: polar express

How to totally own an argument with your 6-year-old over a knock-knock joke

(Moon 7 Media)

Hilton Head Monthly — I should first make clear that the two 6-year-olds in the backseat are totally on a sugar high, having recently enjoyed a five-hour “Polar Express” event at the Savannah Roundhouse Museum that featured hot chocolate, icing-loaded cookies and other substances that cause flash floods of cellular-level disobedience to go coursing through the circulatory systems of the average first-grader.

But the fact is that we have been arguing for like 10 minutes about why the word “orange” is required to make the knock-knock joke “Orange you glad you’re not a banana” funny. It’s the most ridiculous argument ever, mostly because I’m right, and yet I feel like I’m standing in the middle of a desolate street in a 1954 pod-people movie screaming “WHY WON’T ANYONE LISTEN TO ME?”

(If you do not know this joke, here’s how it goes: Knock knock. Who’s there? Banana. Banana who? Knock knock. Who’s there? Banana. Banana who? Knock knock. Who’s there? Orange. Orange who? Orange you glad I didn’t say banana? Right. My son is now substituting “apple” and “raspberry” and “turkey,” for some reason.)

If you’ve ever spent time around 6-year-olds with recent access to tubs full of sprinkles, you know what I mean when I say: Children of a certain age bracket — the one my son is in — temporarily subscribe to an especially twisted form of comedy, a shapeless, Andy Kaufman-like system of setups, punchlines and lengthy improvs that bears zero resemblance to any other humor structure on Earth. Yeah — even British. Allow me to demonstrate.

The boy: “Knock knock.”

Me: “Who’s there?”

The boy: “Chicken.”

Me: “Chicken who?”

The boy: “Chicken who ran up the bridge and jumped off of it and got wet when he hit the DUCK IN THE HEAD (15 seconds of hysterical, respiration-threatening laughter).”



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The kids talk all crazy these days, but whatevs


PICTURED: T.I., who can get you whatever you like, especially if you would like a huge chain.

GateHouse —  In my actual job I am surrounded frequently by children, and by “children” I mean “people who are younger than me,” a group that includes everyone in their twenties and has for years. These children I enjoy having around, because they keep me informed about things that are youthful and trendy, such as:

  • The appeal of a mysterious celebrity named “T.I.” (Evidently, he can get them whatever they like);
  • What to do when I am Facebook Friended by someone I do not particularly like (do nothing, apparently they can’t tell, unless they count their friend totals, which is pathetic);
  • And why anyone in the world would be remotely interested in “Grey’s Anatomy,” a show populated by mopey 43-year-olds whose life lessons are learned exclusively to the sounds of the world’s wussiest music.

We have a symbiotic relationship, the children and me: They are amused at a distance by my gray hair and young child, whom I believe they regard as a bizarre window into a mysterious Future World they think isn’t coming nearly as fast as it is. I, in turn, am energized by their lifeforce, which I sort of draw off of like some sort of parasitic vampire. An old, gray vampire, who can sing “Hot Chocolate” from “The Polar Express” on demand.

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